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Thread: New "Guitar Amp"

  1. #1
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    Oct 2006
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    New "Guitar Amp"

    I don't use a regular guitar amp on stage. Instead, I use an amp modeler (currently a POD XT Live) that can emulate a lot of different amps, and I run the modeler directly into the PA system. As a result, my guitar sound is dependent on having a good PA system. My main band (The Donohoe & Grimes Project) has been using a pair of QSC K10 powered PA speakers for the past year or so. The K10s are awesome speakers. They have 1000 watts of bi-amped power built into each speaker, powering a 10" speaker for the lows and mids and a high-efficiency horn for the high end. All in a compact 35 pound package. They have very flat, clean response. In the past, we have set up the K10s behind the band so we can hear what we're playing and singing. Although this lets us hear the mix well, we can run into feedback problems by having speakers pointing directly at the vocal microphones. To lessen the problem, we cut back some of the high frequencies in the vocal EQ. Unfortunately, this can muddy up the vocals to some extent.

    As I said, the K10s are great, but QSC makes an even better powered speaker...the K12. It's essentially the same as the K10 but with a bigger (12") speaker. The K12 has better bass response and more general headroom than the K10.

    Since my guitar only sounds as good as the PA, I took it upon myself to improve my guitar sound by picking up a pair of barely used K12s on eBay. Last night was the inaugural gig for the new K12s, and everyone loved them. Not only did it improve the sound of my electric guitar, but all the other instruments -- and the vocals -- also sounded better overall. As a bonus, we now have the old K10s available to use as wedge monitors in front of the band, so we can put the K12s in front of the band (where PA speakers really should be) and we don't have to tweak the vocal EQ to compensate for feedback. The net result is that the vocals are a lot clearer and cleaner for the audience, and we can hear ourselves better onstage.

    http://qsc.com/products/loudspeakers/k_series/K12/
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  2. #2
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    Nice! need to get to ABQ sometime and hear that setup!
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  3. #3
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    Cool, but I couldn't find the sound/video clip of you guys jammin away with 'em on that link you provided ............................

    1000 watts aughta do ya right nice
    The perception of perfection is perfectly clear to everyone else

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brent Dowell View Post
    Nice! need to get to ABQ sometime and hear that setup!
    C'mon down! We've got gigs booked into next April so far.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Cook View Post
    ...1000 watts aughta do ya right nice
    That's 1000 watts per side. Plus another 2000 total watts for our monitors. The beauty of it is that we're running the volume somewhere between 2 and 3 on a scale of 10, so it's very clean sound. We're not a loud band, but these speakers are capable of being very loud.

    I find it interesting that back in the '80s we toured with rack of about 1100 watts of power amps driving huge quad-amped stacks on either side of the stage, wedge monitors with 12" drivers. We couldn't fit the whole rig into my Chevy van. (We also had a 1 ton cargo van.) And the system was worth tens of thousands of dollars. Now, for about two grand, we have 4000 watts of power with better specs and cleaner sound, and it all fits easily in the back of my little Lexus SUV. Granted, the current system doesn't have the low-end subwoofers that the big rig did, but those could be added for another $1500 or so, and still fit in my Lexus.

    And yes, we plan to get some more videos of us playing live, although most of the audio portion of the videos will likely be recorded directly from the mixer and not from the speakers. We have two Zoom portable reorders, so we'll set one up out in the room and the other will be a direct board mix. Then by combining the two sound sources, we can get a clear mix that still has some "live" ambiance from the room itself.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
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  5. #5
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    Hey! We've got a pair of those (not sure which size, I'm thinking smaller, maybe the K8) at church. They are very versatile. Both line in and Mic in. We use them up front hooked up to the main sound board. But we can also just grab one and pull it off to the atrium and plug in a mic for a small gathering. They even take RCA in if you want to hook up a DVD or something like that.
    There's usually more than one way to do it...
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brent Dowell View Post
    Nice! need to get to ABQ sometime and hear that setup!
    Let's go!
    Your Respiratory Therapist wears Combat boots

  7. #7
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    Wouldn't practicing be cheaper?



    (sorry...couldn't resist!)
    Got Wood?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Art Mulder View Post
    Hey! We've got a pair of those (not sure which size, I'm thinking smaller, maybe the K8) at church. They are very versatile. Both line in and Mic in. We use them up front hooked up to the main sound board. But we can also just grab one and pull it off to the atrium and plug in a mic for a small gathering. They even take RCA in if you want to hook up a DVD or something like that.
    Very versatile indeed. I took one to a birthday party last weekend for the host to use to plug her iPhone into for background music. Beats the pants off your average Bluetooth speaker. And Saturday I'm taking a single one to use as my onstage guitar amp when I go sit in with a friend's band. I'll use the K12 to hear myself, and we can run a line out from it into the main mixing board for the Front Of House mix.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  9. #9
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    Jul 2009
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    We have a set of the QSC KW122s , they are very nice. A nice thing about the wood cabinets on the kw series is if the cabinets get beat up you can take them apart and repair/repaint them.

  10. #10
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    Good point, Dave. I just looked up the specs on the KW series expecting the wood enclosures to be quite a bit heavier, but the KW12s are only 8 pounds heavier than the K12s.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

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