Live Sound & PA
Speaker systems and amplifiers, the core components of any public address system, function or events company rig, mobile Dj setup or nightclub and bar installation.
From a battery powered portable unit, through the home and hobby users, right up to semi and fully professional level rigs for high power performances, the sound system and equipment market is just vast, and because of this the manufacturers can be very specific in its targeting of customers and their requirements which means as a buyer you are now literally spoiled for choice with products available to suit any and all situations.
With the market embracing class D digital amplification, the active speaker is arguably now the go to choice at virtually all budgets, with powered singular systems becoming the norm for fitness room, hosting events and speeches, and having a multitude of onboard features such as wireless microphones , usb/sd mp3 and bluetooth audio players meaning they are completely self sufficient, with the addition of built in rechargeable battery power to some models meaning they are ultra convenient and completely mobile, solving many location issues where running mains power isn't practical.
Performance based stereo rigs are also now designed with portability in mind, with the use of resin materials bringing cabinet weight down and allowing the inclusion of strong feet and carry handles to be moulded instead of screwed on. Powerful modern design amplifiers, either built right into the speakers or as a separate unit will provide all the guts your setup needs to give you the high volume and sound quality that's expected from a pro outfit. Systems can be tailored specifically for usage, so you get exactly the quality and performance you hoped for.
A mobile Dj for instance may be looking for a room shaking system that has large amounts of bass available and retains its top end at high volume. This is totally different to the sort of requirements coming from a rock and pop band playing the pub circuit, and their needs are different again to those that a solo singer or acoustic duo may have. It's all very specific, and it's these parameters, and more importantly sharing these requirements with the equipment specialist advising you that will ensure you get the correct setup. Larger pro mobile or installation systems offer a range of active and passive set ups, including purpose built subwoofer units, twin woofer 4 way speaker systems, going right up into arena sound territory with the latest in miniature and full size line array style speaker banks which have become increasingly affordable in the last few years. So the major limiting factor is in any live PA situation is going to be overall budget, and the practicality of your intended usage. You may love the look of a huge speaker bank, who doesn’t ?! , but it's obviously not going to suit one mobile Dj and his transit van, so head has to win over heart when it comes to choosing your new equipment, alongside your performance requirements.
Not all live sound is big on size though, and for shop, restaurant and other public installations, there are many discreet yet powerful systems available for both indoor and outdoor use, from the industry standard 100v line level systems that make fitting, expansion and location nice and easy, to fully weatherproof garden speakers in various disguised designs, and sealed units for installation in swimming pools and for building announcement systems. For the home or studio user, there are professional active and passive monitors, hi-fi speakers in bookshelf and floor stand designs, or multi speaker packages for surround sound and home cinema use, and a suitable range of stereo and multichannel amplifiers and receivers to compliment them.
From the smallest battery powered bluetooth speaker, karaoke machine and party system for the casual home user, up to the large professional rigs for serious mobile usage and installation purposes, the newer technologies and construction techniques used in all modern sound equipment means you can be confident in whatever you choose. Obviously a larger more powerful system will inevitably sound superior to a much lower cost setup, but you can be sure that whatever budget level you are looking at, your chosen equipment will give you both the reliability and enjoyment in use that it's capable of.