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torclausen 25th June 2012 01:00 AM

PA's run on a generator
I need help with a bicycle stereo design. Can someone tell me if this could work?

Two Behringer B210D active 10" PA speakers

One 12" active home subwoofer

run on a 1000 watt new honda generator.

I've been reading about people running pa's and folks have hesitancy using smaller Generators. But aren't these new hondas wonderful and steady and safe?

We can borrow one to test with. We want the thing to run for 9 hours. Batteries would get quite heavy...

Any advise is welcomed...



Einric 25th June 2012 01:40 AM

Add up all the wattage of the active devices and double it.

That should give you plenty of power for running what you need at reasonable levels.

I have seen plenty mobile DJ's run thousands of watts off of dual alternators in a van running a huge 120V inverter.
A Honda portable generator is not very different, you just need to make sure you have enough reserve wattage for headroom.
Most generators get the best fuel hourage at between 65% & 85% rated load.

Be careful with the generator specs, pay attention to the Peak Wattage and Running Wattage.
If the generator output power is noisy then you may want to look into a line conditioner to clean it up.

geraldfryjr 25th June 2012 01:53 AM

Be especially carefull that the output voltage as correct.
And the frequency as well.
I saw a guys vintage tube amp go up in smoke at a show once because the Voltage Was Too High !!!

I know this because I measured it my self.

The venue had every thing running off of a generator and luckily it didn't hurt my P.A. or any other equipment.
But unfortunately there was one unlucky and very unhappy guitar player as he said that he had just got the thing.
So we quickly shut it down and found some extension cords and ran off of real power from the grid and the show went on without a hitch.

Not to mention it sounded much better without the generator running in the background.

I didn't have any way to check the frequency that day, But if it is to low that can burn up a transformer as well !!!

jer :)

wg_ski 25th June 2012 02:16 AM

I don't know if they changed it recently, but on the 5000W Honda the neutral was FLOATING on the 120/240 4-prong twistlock. Everything worked ok plugged in to the regular outlets with a bunch of extension cords, but not off ths distro.

torclausen 25th June 2012 05:02 AM

The behringer says 200 watts. Do you think its really that much? I am somewhat confused about how an amp is rated. Perhaps if I had the 200x2 of the behringers and another 200 watt sub, I'd be fine with a 1000 watt generator.

Einric, What does a line conditioner look like, is it the same as a ground loop isolator? Do you know of a good one?

Thanks everyone. I'm feeling more confident that this will work.

geraldfryjr 25th June 2012 06:52 AM

You must consider the efficiency of an amplifier as well!
Typically it can be from 65% to 80%.
So for a worst case situation your 200 watt amplifier could use as much as 300 watts of power.
Especially if it is run near its maximum output continuously.

jer :)

djQUAN 25th June 2012 07:13 AM

how loud are you going to play it? I'm not sure if the home sub can keep up with the PA speakers.

torclausen 25th June 2012 08:00 AM

Am I wrong to think that I can get some bass from 200 watts? Maybe I should dedicate more to the sub.

What would others do for the lightest, most efficient sub? I've seen PA subs that are molded ABS. Does anyone make a 300 watt lightweight sub that is good? I think of home subs because craigslist is always filled with them.


Einric 25th June 2012 01:35 PM

A line conditioner similar to this would be nice.
Other brands like Panamax are a better product but they are much more expensive.

Top Shelf 25th June 2012 04:51 PM

I checked my genny when I first started using it, with a DMM that has the clamp for measuring amperage(A/C). Had to make a special 1 foot cord with male and female ends and unjacketed cable so the three conductors could be measured individually. Its good to check the amp draw off of line power just to be sure your genny is going to supply enough current. Definitely check the frequency ,and voltage sag while under full load.

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