quick guide needed for a new venue install

here is the jist of the story
my nephew inherited an old building and he is a band manager ,he used to do a lot of studio recording and have asked a few friends to help him but they don't know what to set up for a small live sound space ,so he asked me as his mommy will pay for the costs and i am dragged in this because she feels like sonny will be ripped off.
the space has around 12 ft ceilings with wooden rafters,room size is about 70 x 30 ft
the ceiling is a bit higher around the planned stage area(15 ft)
his idea is to have a very high quality sound system fairly full range and mommy is willing to spend a bit(75k to 100k) so son can have a new career as a club owner
i can help a bit with the interior and some speaker choice so any turnkey ideas welcome
p.s he feels like he wants a vintage tonal sound
so please recommend
foh speakers(i love multi cells )
subs
amps
stage mixer (maybe a 5 pc band)
sound board maybe 8 channels(they would like to do some live recording streaming)
snakes
monitors
mikes
lighting
wireless options etc
any help appreciated
thankx
my background is engineer and i did lots of live sound in the eighties and some studio mastering experience
 
This is a huge project IMO, and goes well beyond which sound equipment to choose.

If I was going to drop any money on a venue like this, I'd want to see business plans, projected sales, profit margins etc. Someone that goes into a venture without that side of things in place WILL lose the money, probably within a year.


I'd allocate a good chunk of the budget to room acoustics. Absorption at the back of the stage, and then a combination of absorption and diffusion throughout. The best PA system in the world will sound terrible in a bad room.

I'd also make sure the electrical supply is future-proof. One venue I did a lot of work at had a 240v 125A 3-phase outlet at the back of the stage, which went to a 9x 32A distro. There was a separate supply for the main PA system. Needless to say, we never ran out of stage power, even when the lampies went crazy.

With that out of the way, some equipment recommendations:

- Mics: Sennheiser e9 series. IMO, it's all good stuff and a clear step up from the usual Shure mics. There's a reason I settled on those mics for my own sound business.

- Mixing desk. Whatever your in-house engineer is happy with. Most band engineers (assuming you're hosting other bands) will want something digital. An M32 is probably worth a look, and you'll need the stagebox. I like the QSC TouchMix mixers, but they're what I'm used to. Most engineers have used an X32, and the M32 is a more solid bit of kit.

- You might want to consider a mixing desk for the monitor engineer, too.

- Stage monitors - 12" 2-ways, preferably coaxial. Six of those, maybe more. Don't cheap out here - what the band hears is very important. Monitors are needed to keep the band on time & pitch. Get a compact sub to keep the drummers happy.

- FOH should be whatever suits the room. A venue this size does not need or want a line array system. Don't buy one. Check out Danley for some good stuff. An older point-source system (Nexo Alpha, EAW KF range) might be worth a look, since you might be able to buy a turnkey system from a nearby PA company.

- Amps should be whatever the manufacturer specifies for your PA system. I like Powersoft amps, but others are available. Make sure they have a warranty, and buy a spare. That way, if an amp goes down, you can move a few cables across and be up and running in minutes.

- Lighting depends on the sort of events you're hosting. For DJs, you need strobes, moving heads, maybe blinders, etc etc. Live bands can be fine with pars. Make sure you budget for a lighting desk & engineer if you want to do it properly.



There's also other stuff to consider, such as the layout of the venue. Will there be a bar? If so, you want the PA system set up so that there's much less SPL at the bar. That way, people can order drinks, which is where most of the money comes from.

Chris
 

kipman725

Member
Paid Member
2007-06-10 12:41 pm
Warrington
To make an educated comment we would need to know the layout of the space and what type of events you intend to put on. Avoid line arrays. If you want to run vintage/older gear you need to be proficient and have the time to maintain it. Your budget isn't that much if you want to buy big brands and have to buy everything new.
 
I actually know somebody in the UK who build vintage high power soundsystems with tube amps. His name is Paul Axis, and in the UK and the rest of Europe, he is very known in the reggae scene with his Axis Valv-A-Tron soundsystem, wich is a custom build full vintage tube amp driven soundsystem that plays old reggae. But he does build for others also. He has a few predesigned systems that he builds on order, and works sometimes on full custom stuff also (speakers, amps, preamps, ...). I was a few years ago at a festival where he played and did overpower a 40kW modern (line array) system with his 3kW system.

Your rooms is in metric 9x20m, so i think that a stereo setup of his predesigned system (one or 2 towers on each side) could fill your room aquedate. It's only 200w for each tower, but it goes very loud. Maybe talk to him and see if he can do something for you. He's surely one of the best in Europe for building full tube high power systems. The system he did build seen in the picture (1 tube phono stage, one dub preamp/mixer/crossover, 2 100w tube amps and a top and bass speaker) was recently sold for 8500£ + transport.

Paul Axis | Facebook
axissounduk1 at hotmail dot com
 

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And if you don't want tubes (wich i can undestand because it's not easy nor cheap to maintain), you can replace those with class AB amps with mosfets as amplifing device and a linear power supply. That is how high power amps were untill class D came availeble in high power in the 80's. And using dual concentric and horn subwoofers is indeed a good id like some suggest above. Altec Lansing, older JBL and older Turbosound are those top brands to look at then if you ask me (to buy or to clone).

But i would avoid class D, line arrays and dsp. Those give the modern sound that you don't want. The least disturbing of those 3 would be class D amps for a vintage sound.
 
For mics, i would stay dynamic for a vintage sound, no condensors but for the drum overhead. Shure, Senheiser, EV, ... are brands to look at. An exception on this is for jazz singers, they can benefit for a condensor or a ribbon mic but in most cases something like a dynamic Senheiser MD441 does the trick also. I'm a former soundengineer (before my back killed that carreer) and when used right, dynamics are mostly better live than condensors or ribbons in my opinion, even in a studio that is often the case.
 
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Your budget isn't that much if you want to buy big brands and have to buy everything new.
There are a pair of Nexo Alpha in Irvine TX on ebay for $3000. Buyer beware, inspect before purchase. I listen to speakers on site with a CD player, portable 800W amp. Pay cash.
Too loud for my music room; I won't be bidding against you.
 
thanks for the quick response guys,ray i will reach out to simon 7000 and see what happens
as for the business side i have a friend who owns 4 bars/small clubs in the new york area and he will be helping with his staff on a lot of issues (for a fee of course) he has been in business for 35 years.
chris 661 your general take on the equipment you presented is a great start and very useful to get my noggin going,its already helping me,the building will have 900 amps of juice available.
waxx i actually heard some paul axis systems around 6 years ago and really liked the sound ,it reminded me of my old days with loads of sins.
of course i want tubes ,i refuse to top to concerts now because of awful line arrays and really cheesy processing ,class d amps maybe maybe for sub usage.
i will post more info next week as i know more as for the music genare it will be literally everything
 
Class D amps can sound really good, but they have to be well-designed and implemented.

FWIW, I'd try to go with a modern FOH system. Custom-built cabinets for vintage looks, sure, but modern drivers and amplifiers.
You can EQ it to sound "vintage" if that's what you really want, but most visiting engineers will want a flat system to work with.

Chris
 
Did you say 75-100k for the sound system only????

Get a professional! Not an install sound company/person, preferrably someone from the live sound industry with 2-3 decades of experience in touring and/or resident live sound engineering. If an old school touch is wanted, you need an old school guy. But dont go over the top eccentric old school, use up to date gear esp. For mixers, processing, mics, etc.....
 
Class D amps can sound really good, but they have to be well-designed and implemented.

FWIW, I'd try to go with a modern FOH system. Custom-built cabinets for vintage looks, sure, but modern drivers and amplifiers.
You can EQ it to sound "vintage" if that's what you really want, but most visiting engineers will want a flat system to work with.

Chris
Yes, because you want the PA to be accurate and relatively neutral. If you want a "vintage sound" then hire acts that sound that way.
In the world of PA, "vintage" sounding is something we tolerated back in the day but as soon as something better came along we were happy to leave the "vintage" behind!


At minimum just get a good used 850 rig (as "vintage" as I'll ever recommend -as long as it comes with modern processing) and an X32(or M32). That should be able to leave you enough money for stage gear and basic lighting. As a venue you are better off buying to suit artist riders, saves on the arguments and makes booking easier.


Might even be easier at first just to hire/lease a whole package from a sound company, at least until you figure out what the business really needs. That way you can try out different solutions until you get it right.