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Can The Stagesource System Really Replace My "old School" Rig?


Best Answer brianj402002 , 01 October 2013 - 02:50 PM

Well..I can honestly answer my own question now of "Can The Stagesource System Really Replace My "old School" Rig?" It has! Without a doubt! I am completely satisfied with this gear...more than satisfied actually...

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#1 brianj402002

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 02:24 PM

Hi all...new to the forum. I am in the market for a new PA Rig. Getting tired of lugging 18" subs and 150 pound mains...plus the back breaking amp racks.

I came across this gear at a local shop and was intrigued.

 

Now...being "old school," I've never had much faith in small powered gear. I've heard a lot of them....unimpressed. I've seen some videos of the stagesource system...but exactly what am I hearing? Hard to judge the size of the room, amount of people in the audience, etc.

 

I play in a 4 piece country/rock band and I am wondering if this gear will be suitable for rooms up to 500 capacity? Please help!

 

 


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#2 dboomer

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 04:06 PM

I am wondering if this gear will be suitable for rooms up to 500 capacity?

 

Well everybody has a little different expectation of just exactly what this means.  What gear are you now sucessfully doing 500 people with?

 

One of the big advantages with the DreamStage system is that you are directly avoiding a lot of problems that others systems add to your overall mix with the self-operating features of the system (unless you already have a lot of processing gear and a very skilled operator running it). This can greatly affect system "effectiveness" without the need for so much "loudness".   By connecting the speakers all up using Line 6 link you are optimizing gain structure, which can be off by 10-16 dB in most common systems where all the gear is set up at the "unity/zero" markings.  People that have systems set up like this aren't getting all the performance they have paid for. 

 

So in some sense you you wont need a system as large as you might otherwise think to be able to do a great job or thinking about it the other you may not believe that so much usable output can come from such a system.  

 

There is also a secret weapon included in the system.  There is a preset for the L/R output called "Loud PA".  By engaging this preset you can get your average level way up compared to other systems that might have the same numbers of similar speakers and amplifier power.  This preset can easily make youre sound perform like double the system you though you had.



#3 brianj402002

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 04:38 PM

Excellent information dboomer. I guess what my question boils down to is...can 2 little 12" woofers compare to let's say a couple of yorkville ls801's? Maybe it's apples and oranges. I really don't know or maybe I just don't understand the technology behind the stage source system. A wee bit of "too good to be true" is at play in my mind. Lol. I wish I could hear the system and make my decision based on that.

I have been reading up on the M20d. There is no doubt in my mind that it will replace a couple of cases worth of rack gear as well as free up a lot of time and frustration. So it's not so much the brains of the operation..or even the sound quality...I'm sure it's amazing....I'm looking for information on whether or not this system can ...for a lack of better terminology...kick lollipop. Lol

I would really like some input from some people who actually use this system in venues like I have described. I appreciate the information from dboomer. It helps with understanding some of the technical aspects...i would really appreciate some real world opinions on what I can expect from this gear.
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#4 brianj402002

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 04:56 PM

Ok. I really didnt type lollipop. Hahaha. Really....
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#5 Digital-sound

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 09:06 PM

I often think about a smaller system as well. I also use yorkville. I went from 2 - 801p's and 2 - e152's down to a couple of nx720s's and nx55p's. the sound was good, but limited to smaller rooms. As soon as I got to 200 people plus, or outdoors, I could never get that "big" sound I had with the big gear. I went back to the big stuff. 2 - ls801p's and 2 - ef500p's now. I love the sound. I use a driverack PA+ and have tuned things pretty good for the rooms we play in. Outside is great too. Love it. But it is damn heavy stuff to lug around. I have a 3 gig weekend coming up, and I will feel it. Even though I have set up both sides of the front end on a cart, and set up is quick, it is still heavy.

And I cycle back to looking at small stuff. I am told the yorkville paraline system is great. But to really compare, it seems I am looking at almost $14000CAD. That would give 2 - 2x12 subs on each sides (4x12/side) and two of the tops per side which each contain 4 - 6" speakers. I heard this system outside and it sounded great. Wasnt a huge area, but I am confident it would do what I need. But, lots to haul still....but lighter. And, it ain't gonna happen. Way more than I have to spend right now.

The L3S's seem like they may do the job. Not quite as much power as the 801's, but much more than my previous small system attempt. I think 2 L3S's (1 per side) and 2 L3T's (1 per side) should be a fine set up? My concern is vocals. I was always advised to go with a 2" exit from the horn. I imagine crossover has a lot to do with it too? I get lost in that part. But I do know the speakers I had with 1" exit don't compare with the 2" exits I have now on the horns of my EF500's.

I like technology, and I would love to hear some more from people who use these speakers. I am also in a country rock band, and would hate to lose the great bottom we have now. The whole sound is great (big thanks to the M20D as well which I love).
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#6 RonMarton

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 01:23 AM

...Maybe it's apples and oranges...


To my mind, that phrase really sums it up quite well, guys.

...can 2 little 12" woofers compare to let's say a couple of yorkville LS801's?...


In some venues, the Yorkville horn-loaded systems' ability to effectively include the floor on which they stand as part of their reinforcement design may indeed allow them to "throw a##-kicking thump" a bit further than an L3s,

...HOWEVER...

I really feel that the additional control afforded by the L6 Link system (as alluded to by Don Boomer) is but one of the StageScape features that is far more likely to actually yield SUPERIOR results in the majority of such crowded and/or large venues.

As Don's already implied, "thump" is but one of the ingredients for sonic success, so I'd suggest it's worth considering just four others, (from among several) ...not only as features that are yet to be simultaneously offered in any other sub of comparable price, but also as being absolutely vital to the derivation of "the right sound" when we're actually touring in the "real world":
  • Biamplification for more headroom and control of each speaker,
  • Instant switching between easily identified "types" of sub output for "tailoring" to different venues and rigs,
  • Flatter response to a lower bass roll-off point arising from having no limitation arising from horn resonances and
  • The "clean loudness per pound" or "clean loudness to size" ratio that often allows optimal placement which would simply not be feasible with bulkier boxes, regardless of manufacture.
In considering my observations, it may be helpful for you to know that I have neither affiliation with, nor particular loyalty to, Line 6, Yorkville or any other manufacturer or supplier, that "Line 6 Expert" tag notwithstanding.
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#7 brianj402002

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 02:20 AM

This is great info guys..I guess the only true way to find out what this system is capable of is to test drive it or manage to find a band who is using it and go for a beer (or 12). Thanks everyone...keep the comments coming...I think we are really starting to get some good information here on what we can and can't expect this system to do. Not much out there on the web as of yet in real life reviews.


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#8 antonioctd

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 02:41 AM

Whenever I see this kind of thread I start wondering what kind of gigs cover bands do around the world...

I get by with the m20d and 2 electro-voice ELX12p for most of my pub gigs.
For slightly bigger rooms I add an yamaha 18'' sub.
That's it.

And I mic everything and get a nice sound that people can enjoy and, more importantly, don't have ear damage by attending my show!

Whenever the event is bigger and requires a real PA it is usually provided by a sound company. This is paid by whoever hire us.
On those occasions I'll be very happy to carry beer instead of the PA :rolleyes: B)

Now, by the way people talk in live sound forums, they appear to always play big venues and provide the sound themselves? Really?
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#9 brianj402002

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 03:11 AM

Hi antonioctd. Thanks for the comments. I think it all depends on the venue. I have played shows to 50 people and I have played shows to 30 000. The bar scene that I am playing now is very demanding. They pay you next to nothing but expect large venue sound. A lot of the venues supply a crappy a$$ PA with a bar tender twisting the dials....not for me thanks. When I have my own gear...and I'm running my own sound...I know we sound good. When I did play the large venues..of course we had no choice but to put up with the sound crew that were hired..(usually they were "musicians" who would rather run sound...and make you sound the way they want.. :wacko: ) That's out of your control.

 

A "big" venue to me now is a 500 capacity room. Quite manageble on your own with the right gear.

 

I hear ya on the beer thing..lol.. B)


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#10 antonioctd

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 07:15 AM

Hi antonioctd. Thanks for the comments. I think it all depends on the venue. I have played shows to 50 people and I have played shows to 30 000. The bar scene that I am playing now is very demanding. They pay you next to nothing but expect large venue sound. A lot of the venues supply a crappy a$$ PA with a bar tender twisting the dials....not for me thanks. When I have my own gear...and I'm running my own sound...I know we sound good. When I did play the large venues..of course we had no choice but to put up with the sound crew that were hired..(usually they were "musicians" who would rather run sound...and make you sound the way they want.. :wacko: ) That's out of your control.

 

A "big" venue to me now is a 500 capacity room. Quite manageble on your own with the right gear.

 

I hear ya on the beer thing..lol.. B)

 

I stopped playing a lot in pubs exactly for that reason. If they want a professional band it costs money.

There are plenty of kids playing for beer and gas money. They don't sound like any of my bands and my price is obviously higher.

 

On big venues or outdoor events that have a sound company I don't mind not having control. Its their job to do the sound, not mine. 

Of course that if I see that their are not doing their job right I can be a real pain in the a** and I don't say the sound check is done if I don't like the sound  -_- 

 

But I prefer much more when I don't have to deal with the sound and can focus on playing!

 

There were times when we were asked to play big venues or outdoor large events and provide sound.

On that case we just contact our favorite sound company, ask for their price and add that to our final price! 

There are 2 sound companies that I really like to work with. I fact that is my favorite situation, the contractor pays for the show and for the sound and we get to chose the sound company  B)  

 

Any way, that's the sole reason I've invested in the M20d, It allows me to focus a lot more in the playing on small events where I have to do sound. 

I should add that this little wonder mixer does that job amazingly well!

Where before was an attention split of 50% sound, 50% playing, now it must be like 80% playing and 20% sound! Amazing  :wub:

 


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#11 dboomer

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 07:35 AM

Excellent information dboomer. I guess what my question boils down to is...can 2 little 12" woofers compare to let's say a couple of yorkville ls801's?


They are comparable at one to one ... But not two for one. Double 12's is roughly the same cone area as a single 18", but smaller speakers will be "tighter" sounding without as much "hangover".

#12 brianj402002

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 07:37 AM

Very well explained dboomer. That makes a lot of sense. Thanks
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#13 brianj402002

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 07:50 AM

Thanks antonioctd...I guess I'm just a control freak...hahaha...I just never really had much luck with getting any sound company give us what we wanted...mostly no bottom or top end and nothing but attitude.. :angry: ..

 

I am completly sold on the m20d...love the reviews and the information I have read so far...I just need to be sure of the rest of the system...I'm getting there... ;)

 
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#14 dboomer

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 10:20 AM

So let me tell you a little more about what that means.

 

While the components of the system (M20d mixer & StageScape speakers) are all high quality pieces by themselves you get some extra system enhancement when you connect it all up together via L6 link.  The system becomes "self-aware" of all connected components.  This is a feature usually only found with very expensive network connected systems  (AVB - Dante, etc.)

 

This allows all pieces to work together to their full potential without wasting any available resources.  This is very rare because in a system unless you have someone calibrate the complete system by making measurements and adding pads where necessary.  Most systems (even full pro systems) are only partially calibrated and therefore you cannot get the full potential dynamic range from the system.  You end up wasting that which you have paid for.  Think of driving a car that needs a tune-up.  It probably gets you there, but it wastes gas and driving may not be as smooth, etc.  Even if you put the engine on a test stand and dial it in  it won't matter much when you drop it back into a car unless the transmission, gear ratio, etc., etc. is correct.  People sometimes forget that a sound system is a "system" and system performance is what is crucial, not the performance of any one piece.

 

Having a calibrated system means that what you see on the output meters of the mixer is where the entire system is currently.  I have seen over the years numerous times where a customer says " hey the lights were in the green on my mixer, why did I burn out my speakers"?  Well the simple answer is that while the mixer may have been operating in its "cruising range" you really have no way of knowing where the speaker system is operating.  Clip limiters on your amplifiers protect your amps but likely don't do much for the speakers.  But the other big (but likely hidden) benefit is that you likely always have the range that you would expect from any adjustments you need to make.  The controls actually work!

 

Long and short of it is that you end up with a full optimized system that consistently monitors itself and re-adjusts itself as needed so you can get your money's worth out of it as opposed to many systems i see that aren't even getting half of their money's worth out of it.  Nothing worse than getting distortion well before you should have on not getting full power or not getting full clarity and articulation.



#15 eukieb

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 11:59 AM

D Boomer,
Can you tell me exactly where to find the " Loud PA" preset? . I have looked in the presets where I saw Small PA, Lounge Music, etc, but can't seem to find the Loud PA.
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#16 RonMarton

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 12:30 PM

...I just never really had much luck with getting any sound company give us what we wanted...mostly no bottom or top end and nothing but attitude.. :angry:


I am very sad to report that I've often had very similar experiences with (supposedly) professional audio contractors whose operators seem to have forgotten that they themselves do not provide the "show" in "showbusiness", ...as without performers giving performances, those selfsame "sound companies" are, in fact, "out of business". :( :wacko:
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#17 Digital-sound

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 01:33 PM

Whenever I see this kind of thread I start wondering what kind of gigs cover bands do around the world... 

 

I get by with the m20d and 2 electro-voice ELX12p for most of my pub gigs.

For slightly bigger rooms I add an yamaha 18'' sub.

That's it. 

 

And I mic everything and get a nice sound that people can enjoy and, more importantly, don't have ear damage by attending my show!

 

Whenever the event is bigger and requires a real PA it is usually provided by a sound company. This is paid by whoever hire us. 

On those occasions I'll be very happy to carry beer instead of the PA  :rolleyes:  B)

 

Now, by the way people talk in live sound forums, they appear to always play big venues and provide the sound themselves? Really?  

 

We play rooms from 100-400.  And for the most part, use the same PA for it all.  an 18" sub on each side with a 15" top on each side.  As I described above.  We will drop an 18" sub when the space just doesn't allow it...which is rare.   As you mention, antonioctd, we can also "get by" with just the tops.  It will sound great to most.  But it doesn't do it for me.  I like a big sound.  A "full", quality sound.  I really enjoy playing music, and I enjoy it FAR more, when I know we are sounding great.  We have never been asked to turn down, and we play country/rock/top40.  We got lots of compliments when all we had was a couple of old, no name 15"'s on top, and no sub.  But, we now get even more compliments on our sound.  I know we get a nice sound from just a pair of tops, but I also know it doesn't compare to what we get with a couple of subs.

 

We also got great sound with a pair of 15" subs and 12" mains.  But again, we limited fast in a bigger room, where we needed a bigger sound.  Again, no one complained, and they danced all night.  But it can be better.

 

I think the Line 6 speakers will do us well.  A pair of 12" speakers/side should be good.  I more questioned the tops, but when I see the bigger names using them, then the technology must be there.  Now, I have to try and sell my Yorkville set up first though!  AGAIN!  Ha!  I love this hobby....at least it pays for itself....mostly!

 

I may wait a year to see what happens next.


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#18 brianj402002

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 01:54 PM

Well put Digital-sound. I would never sacrifice the sound to save my back. Not that I disagree with antonioctd....everyone is different and he possibly does obtain a great sound. Could be a different type of venue. Playin country/rock/top40 to a crowd of rowdy drunks...demands earth moving sound. This is my main concern with the stagesource system...Will I get the that earth moving sound???


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#19 eukieb

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 03:05 PM

I am wondering if this gear will be suitable for rooms up to 500 capacity?
 
Well everybody has a little different expectation of just exactly what this means.  What gear are you now sucessfully doing 500 people with?
 
One of the big advantages with the DreamStage system is that you are directly avoiding a lot of problems that others systems add to your overall mix with the self-operating features of the system (unless you already have a lot of processing gear and a very skilled operator running it). This can greatly affect system "effectiveness" without the need for so much "loudness".   By connecting the speakers all up using Line 6 link you are optimizing gain structure, which can be off by 10-16 dB in most common systems where all the gear is set up at the "unity/zero" markings.  People that have systems set up like this aren't getting all the performance they have paid for. 
 
So in some sense you you wont need a system as large as you might otherwise think to be able to do a great job or thinking about it the other you may not believe that so much usable output can come from such a system.  
 
There is also a secret weapon included in the system.  There is a preset for the L/R output called "Loud PA".  By engaging this preset you can get your average level way up compared to other systems that might have the same numbers of similar speakers and amplifier power.  This preset can easily make youre sound perform like double the system you though you had.


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#20 eukieb

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Posted 06 August 2013 - 03:06 PM

Where can I find the " Loud PA " that you refer to?
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