Need help with PA systems setup...


New member
Hi softies, I wonder if you guys could help me solve this confusion..

I'm helping a friend to look out for PA system for indoor live band performances. The place is not really small, about 5000 square feet, but the stage is rather small.

So what setup is the most appropriate in this situation?

Cos I'm quite confused about the Subwoofer thingy. Do I need the instrument amps if I have an active subwoofer?

Do i need to get the power amp and D.I box as well?Cos I'm not really sure of the function.

What's the difference between pre amp and power amp?
Basically this is what I have in mind for the setup;
- Speakers
- Mixer
- Monitors
- Mics-vocals and instruments,
- Guitar amps
- Bass amps
- Drumset

Please help me. Your response will be deeply appreciated.
Thanks all!
hi audiog33k

welcome to SOFT!

to understand your situation better, could you tell us more about the venue?

1. is the place meant to play loud music? as opposed to cafe/relax music?
2. is the place squarish or circle or odd shape?
3. how high is the celling?
4. what is the budget?

Sub-woofer are speakers that are designed to handle low frequencies.

Instrument amps are useful for the musicians' monitoring.

Power Amp is the amplifier that powers your main PA speakers (there are active speakers with built-in amp)

DI are for converting line level signal from instrument amp to mic level signal for the mixer.
Hi soft, thanks for the reply.

The place is more suitables for relax music, with high ceilings and the space is squarish. Budget is quite tight right now but maybe just a standard quality for a start.

So, it's a must to have subwoofer?active or passive?

I assume we don't have to buy monitors as the instrument amps will be made for musician's monitoring.

That means, i should get a speaker that has a built-in amp ie. power amp?

What about the pre-amp?It wouldn't be necessary if i have a mixer board?

I'm still confused about the D.I box.

Hope you could help me.Thanks again.
depending on your budget, you can choose similar product that does the job.

since the venue is for relax music, the sound level do not need to be too loud. meaning no need big big Front of House(FOH) speakers. you might like to check out Mackie SRM450 or even the smaller SRM350 and add the sub-woofer SWA1501. these are all Active Speakers meaning they do not need additional amp.

you might need to have some fill-in speakers placed at the coners opposite the stage to even out the loudness in the room.

you see, the people sitting closer to the stage will hear sound from the guitar amp, bass amp and direct drum sound. using a not-too-big instrument amp will be good. might want to get a drum shield to minimise the direct drum sound spilling into the audience.

oh, you need snake cable (multicore cable) and junction box too! this will help you keep the cable neat and tidy.

Well said, thanks again.

By the way, i've searched the mackie active speaker and subwoofer in swee lee website.However i found that only mackie has the built-in amp and it's pricey.

What if i choose other active speaker, without built-amp?What else should i need then?

Is there any cheap rental services around?

Thanks again soft.Really appreciate your kindness.
was also searching bout DI after u asked that question...

and i found this webby:

go through some links there to get a better picture of it... basically, u need a DI to connect line-outs or guitar-outs to the mixer to drive it properly and to reduce a load of problem of interference and treble loss through long cables...

if u're using high impedence mics, u need a DI box too... but most dynamic mics are low impedence...

i'm not sure bout this but i think high impedence signals are those which have higher voltages and are a bit louder. low impedence have lower voltages and are a lil softer...

i think some DI boxes allow u to have 2 of those kinds of signals going out at the same time so u can connect the low impedence one to mixers and the high impedence ones to on stage monitors...
you can contact mike from mikemann studios to help u out with that.. he's pretty good with aall this stuff..