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Old 1st September 2004, 10:44 PM   #1
dvdwmth is offline dvdwmth  Canada
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Default P.A. style speakers

At a wedding I just attended there was a small (for a P.A. at least) pair of self powered yorkville speakers that had been rented for the after service festivities. They were 150 watts each with an apx 12 inch driver and a horn. I was asked if I could build something that would sound similar.

I think what was particulairly appealing to the person who made the request was the powerful sound, and full, punchy bass.

Can someone suggest a project that might have a similar sound to these speakers. I dont care if it uses horns but I suspect that those drivers are responsible for the character.

I will use bridged IC chips for amplification as documented on National Semiconductors site (dont remember the exact chip off hand)

These are likely to be used in a basement party room kind of environment
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Old 1st September 2004, 11:05 PM   #2
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Last year I built a powered monitor/pa speaker for my daughter-in-law (she plays in the church band). I used a salvaged 12" woofer and a horn tweeter sourced from pe (I think this is the one)

I powered it with one of those Alesis bi-amp modules from Apex Jr.

The box construction was basically a clone of similar units. It sounds pretty good, for what it is. I have some pics lying around somewhere if you are interested.

/Dave
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Old 1st September 2004, 11:13 PM   #3
Variac is offline Variac  United States
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I got some of those Alesis modules too, but haven't used them.
My plan was also to use them for a PA/ party system.
They really aren't powerful enough for a true PA system, but for loud music, or strategic reinforcement of acoustic instruments the will prob be OK. They cross over at 1500 hz which is about right for 2 way 12 or 15" pro drivers w/ 1" horns

Yorkville is known around here because they make some speakers with "Unity Horns" These horns incorporate mid range cone drivers and a compression driver in one horn. If the ones you heard were these, they are supposed to be great, but the measurements of all parts of the horn are crucial so you either have to buy them or have one to measure!
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Old 2nd September 2004, 03:45 AM   #4
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You can buy pleanty of 12/15" + horn setups cheaply enough, that it's probably not worth your time to build them unless you're determined to do so. Check PE and other Prosound as they'll have some devent cheap 'party' boxes. That way you can listen first and pick some that sound OK to your ears. Then if you really want them to be active, and you can't find any that are, add a small plate amp.
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Old 2nd September 2004, 06:19 PM   #5
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Old 2nd September 2004, 07:28 PM   #6
Sjef is offline Sjef  Netherlands
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I see a couple of different topics at the moment about PA speakers and in all the topics there seems to be a little misunderstanding about PA drivers.

As a sound engineer I work a lot with PA systems and the differences between are huge. Many people seem to think that PA has only got to do with going loud and that it is bad anyway so a couple of cheap drivers would be good enough. WRONG WRONG WRONG.

Making a good PA speaker is as hard or even harder as making a good hifi speaker. You wouldn't use a $5,- tweeter in your home system would you ? So don't think that it's good enough for PA then, it's even worse. People always refer to PA as being something bad. I can tell you that there are PA systems out there wich outperform a lot of so called High End systems with ease. Don't put them al in the same leage, it's really the same as saying that all hif systems sound like crap when you have only heard a $50,- all in one combo.

I can understand why someone want's something like the sound of the PA speakers he has heard. They might have one thing that many home hifi is lacking, namely Dynamics. Trying to copy it would be as difficult as copying a commercial hifi speaker.

Please stay away from those cheap boom boom party boxes, they are no good and might make you think that PA is bad in general.
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Old 2nd September 2004, 08:06 PM   #7
OMNIFEX is offline OMNIFEX  Jamaica
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Quote:
As a sound engineer I work a lot with PA systems and the differences between are huge. Many people seem to think that PA has only got to do with going loud and that it is bad anyway so a couple of cheap drivers would be good enough. WRONG WRONG WRONG.

Making a good PA speaker is as hard or even harder as making a good hifi speaker. You wouldn't use a $5,- tweeter in your home system would you ? So don't think that it's good enough for PA then, it's even worse. People always refer to PA as being something bad. I can tell you that there are PA systems out there wich outperform a lot of so called High End systems with ease. Don't put them al in the same leage, it's really the same as saying that all hif systems sound like crap when you have only heard a $50,- all in one combo.

Good Show!


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Old 2nd September 2004, 10:37 PM   #8
Variac is offline Variac  United States
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Quote:
they are no good and might make you think that PA is bad in general.
I'm sure you are right, that a good PA speaker is hard to design.
And the Yorkvilles are prob prety good, and to expect something made by someone without a clue and with crummy drivers to embody the things he liked about the Yokville is unrealistic.

BUT, People are subjected all the time to apallingly crappy PA equipment. Who could blame them for thinking "I can throw anything together and it will sound better than this" -And they'd be right!!!
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Old 3rd September 2004, 12:45 AM   #9
dvdwmth is offline dvdwmth  Canada
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Thanks for the input everyone.

Quote:
Originally posted by Sjef


I can understand why someone want's something like the sound of the PA speakers he has heard. They might have one thing that many home hifi is lacking, namely Dynamics.


thats about right.


I think I need to clarify a couple of things.

I dont want to design anything, because I dont have the experience or the equipment. As I stated before, Im looking for an existing project. Perhaps there isn't one quite like this in which case I'm hoping to find something with a similar sound.

Also, I agree that there are decent PA speakers around for a reasonable price, some probably sound decent too, but they aint pretty. I want the insides with a pretty face to boot. So this is why I want to build something. Besides, its fun and educational.

I managed to find a schematic of the amp (these were self powered) on yorkvilles website. It appears that these use RCF drivers, which are fairly pricey.

Thanks for the link to your site Bill but that would be overkill in this case.

Anyway, its really a type of sound I'm looking for as opposed to a literal copy. Some of the Adire stuff looks like it might be going in the right direction but I haven't heard any of them.

Thanks for your input.
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Old 3rd September 2004, 01:00 AM   #10
Variac is offline Variac  United States
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The Adire is what is often recommended for requests like yours. I wonder how we missed it! There are 2 models one with 10" one with 12" The price is good too!! I'd say go for 'em

The Pispeakers would also be contenders.

Both use Eminence drivers (at least the cheaper Pi's)

Another cool thing about the Adire is that they have an 18" woofer that you can use with the 10" model if later you want to really go crazy. The setup is called the Hurricane I believe, but the big woofers are a steep upgrade- about $300 ea.
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