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FDP Forum / Miscellaneous and Non-Fender Topics / Sound system for playback of looper and YT backing tracks

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Therealfrogman

Fibi Figallily

is a silly name.....
Jun 5th, 2017 12:13 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I know this may be a no brainer but I am going to ask anyway. I have a real crappy set of pc speakers and a horrible subwoofer that sux using to practice with the looper and tracks. What I want is something I can create on my looper and have that loop go out to a stereo amp with a set of speakers, I am thinking an A/B switch for the looper (i do not need stereo for the looper playback) I just want to be able to turn things up a little to jam with.

Can I just plug the computer speaker connection to a small household type amp and figure out how to get the looper output converted down to to an input on it? A powered set of speakers sounds like the solution but the prices seem pretty high. Maybe there is a set out there that you guys use that isn't in the high dollar catagory.

Peegoo
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Jun 5th, 2017 03:55 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

A small powered mixer with a minimum of two channels would work great. That way you can use conventional (unpowered) speakers.

Another simple option would be a Roland keyboard amp. Their current line (and those from the last 10 years or so) have multiple channels with discrete volume controls for each. I had a KC-60 that I ran a drum machine through. It was only 40 watts, but it was LOUD and it sounded great.

Either one of the above options would be a great deal on the used market. Check GC's used gear online to see what's available. Also check local music shops that sell used gear.

Example Roland KC-series amp: the KC-60...still in production!

Peegoo
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Jun 5th, 2017 03:58 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Here's an ideal powered mixer for what you want to do. It's got mic AND line inputs on each channel strip.

Peavey box-top mixer.

Tony Wright
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Stillwater, OK

I never met a calorie I didn't like.
Jun 6th, 2017 06:24 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I work at an event center...we do conferences, weddings, employee training, concerts...all that stuff.

We have lots of people come in with a PowerPoint presentation for their specific needs...some ask us for projector and screen...we tend to suggest they simply plug into our flat screens in the classrooms.

Some need a larger audience and for those, we plug into the PA in the larger multi purpose rooms. It works just fine.

Peegoo's suggestions are right on the money. You can send your audio signal directly out of the computer into the audio amp of your choice. The signal is not picky...NOT UNTIL YOU HAVE A "LONG" SIGNAL PATH.

It is just like sending an acoustic electric guitar signal to the mixer...short cables are less likely to suffer from interference and 60 cycle hum, ground loop, bad wiring in the building...and external electric motor noise (fans, blenders, neon or florescent lighting, refrigerator motors, etc). So, if you need to have more than 10-15ft of cable, consider a DI box. Since you are running a stereo signal out of the computer, you might consider using two budget DI rather than a more expensive stereo DI.

A device such as the powered mixer that Pegoo suggested could simply take the left and right signal into "TWO" separate cannels, where each is treated as a mono thus allowing you to just use one passive speaker cabinet.

You have a passive mixer and powered speaker? Works the same. Put the left in one channel and the right into another channel...

IF your passive mixer has one of the "stereo channels" where there are two 1/4 inputs or even two RCA inputs, feel free to use that.

AND....using a passive mixer means you could put that in a signal path to your normal guitar amp.

WARNING...since vocals and other instruments will be going into your guitar amp...using the internal effects of your guitar amp will affect the vocals and drums and keyboards and other sound as well. This would be a good time for you to simply put your guitar into one of the channels on the mixer as well...you can put your pedals in that "guitar-into-mixer-into-guitar amp" signal path thusly:
"guitar-into-pedals-into-mixer-into-guitar amp"

Now the mixer below assumes you need one channel for your vocal mic; a second channel for your guitar; and still leaves a stereo channel (actually a mono channel with a left and right signal input).

I picked this mixer by simply going to Musician's Friend, clicking on Live Sound-Unpowered Mixer and then ranking the mixers by "lowest price to highest price" and selected the first one that had the minimum requirements. You can use ANY unpowered mixer in this application. The difference will probably be the type of input connectors and such.

For my iPad, I use a "wye cable" with a 3.5mm "T/R/S" male plug. The other end of the cable has two 1/4 T/S male plugs. Thus I can plug into one OR two normal channels on a mixer depending on whether I need "true" stereo with one side turned up more than the other. (RARELY EVER HAPPENS...and typically I set my PAN or BALANCE control at "12 o'clock" so both signals go equally into Left and Right out of the mixer and into my amplification. (Typically a powered speaker for rehearsal at home.)

So, depending on your needs and budget...a cheap unpowered mixer or a powered mixer with a passive speaker or a keyboard amp that has its own internal "mixer" that accepts multiple inputs with controls on each.

We do a lot of "computer to PA" so I know this works. Think about it...we just did two dance studio recitals with over 700 in attendance (one had four nights of performances to make sure every mom and dad and extended family could attend..paid for by the client...and they sold their own tickets, we simply present our invoice at the end.) We used the computer to DI to unpowered mixer route.

WORKS JUST FINE!!!

(I hate to admit that Pegoo was right...)

FDP Sponsor Musician's Friend link

DrKev
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Paris, France

It's just a guitar, not rocket science.
Jun 6th, 2017 06:50 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I do exactly what you want with my Yamaha THR amp. You can connect the computer via USB or via mini jack. Guitar sounds are great, amo presets are editable, and it takes pedals well. The THR5 is the smallest and cheapest but somewhat less configurable than one of the THR10 models.

lusn
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Chicago

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Jun 6th, 2017 12:31 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

" (I hate to admit Peegoo was right...)"

I hope you are kidding, PG is in the top 3 most resourced entities on this page.

Therealfrogman

Fibi Figallily

is a silly name.....
Jun 6th, 2017 01:35 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

"" (I hate to admit Peegoo was right...)"

I hope you are kidding, PG is in the top 3 most resourced entities on this page. "

Is there anything Peegoo is not helpful with?

Anyway, thank you all! I will read through this stuff, my guitar fetish has really cut into my cash flow so I need to go as cheap as possible.




Peegoo
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double-cross to bear
Jun 6th, 2017 02:27 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I have learned a TON of stuff here myself--I do appreciate Tony's detailed analysis of all things Sound Reinforcement.

Rock on, brothers!

Peegoo
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double-cross to bear
Jun 6th, 2017 05:21 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Holy cow, this little Carvin box-top is a

SCREAMIN' deal at $279.

Tony Wright
Contributing Member
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Stillwater, OK

I never met a calorie I didn't like.
Jun 6th, 2017 08:41 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Just for the record...I really have a great respect for Peegoo. I enjoy his humor and I bow to his knowledge in all things.

Sorry if my lame attempt at humor makes you uncomfortable.

Deep

Kathmandu, Nepal.

Jun 7th, 2017 03:57 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Get the Yamaha THR10!

Therealfrogman

Fibi Figallily

is a silly name.....
Jun 7th, 2017 03:15 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Found a deal on a Peavey PVi4B for $40 and bought it, looks to be in pretty mint condition so now I have something to keep my anxiety up :-)

Rob Jai

Calif Cap City

"Jai" pronounced "J"
Jun 7th, 2017 04:40 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

The Yamaha THR amps are cool as a practice amp, but would it be loud enough for performance applications? In a quiet setting where nothing else but your playing is going on maybe, but in a room with a lot of background noise, people talking etc. I tend to think it would not be able to be cranked loud enough to cut through. I could be wrong.

Tony Wright
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Stillwater, OK

I never met a calorie I didn't like.
Jun 7th, 2017 06:06 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I looked at the PVi4B owner's manual and it appears the powered mixer has both powered output to drive a passive 8 Ohm speaker (or two) AND it has an unpowered Line Out on the back of the powered mixer.

Thus you can drive a passive speaker, a powered speaker (via Line Out) AND you can also send an Unpowered signal into your current guitar amp via the same Line Out just as I suggested in the previous post where I suggested the Mackie Mix5.

That $40 powered mixer (assuming everything functions, which I am sure you have already checked) was a BARGAIN!!!! Well done.

You could run a one man show with that device...or you could bring a friend, both of you run thru the four channels and then plug in your choice of playback units including a drum machine or mp3 or CD player or iPad into the RCA inputs on the back, using the front "tape" control and the internal controls on whatever "outside source" and put on a two man show.

GREAT tool to keep. If you get in a band where the bass player has to hock his bass amp head, you could loan him the PVi4B at gigs to get thru the next payday. (I pick on bass players because I are one.)

Seriously, that powered mixer can replace a guitar, keyboard or bass amp in a crisis at a gig, so...as I said...GREAT tool to keep.

Pat yourself on the back!

Peegoo
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Jun 7th, 2017 07:35 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

SCORE!

Run a guitar or bass modeler into the high-Z input on that boxtop mixer and you'll have a totally giggable rig that will sound killer.

Nice find!

DrKev
Contributing Member
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Paris, France

It's just a guitar, not rocket science.
Jun 8th, 2017 12:17 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

@Rob Jai: I have a practiced with a quiet drummer and the THR amp. Not ideal but just about doable.

Therealfrogman

Fibi Figallily

is a silly name.....
Jun 8th, 2017 10:22 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

So I found a what looks like one half of a PA sound system speaker that has both 1/4 jack and stereo speaker clips, its 8 ohms and is made by Digital Audio, the rating is 10-400 watts.

Ideally I would just have one speaker (this cabinet is about waist high and has a 12", 4" mid and a horn) the horn part of this is what I am not sure about. It is not something I can take back if I dont like it so what do you guys think?

Again, you guys are an amazing and incredible resource to say the least. Somehow I snuck an Epi Casino in here last without my wife asking me anything.... walked right by her carrying the case too ;-)


jhawkr
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Wichita, KS USA

It's all gravy from here on...
Jun 8th, 2017 10:30 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I use this right here into two EV 15"/Horn 2-way speakers. Does a fine job!

Rack

Peegoo
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Jun 8th, 2017 04:35 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

That speaker should sound great. It may be a good idea to place it on the floor like a monitor wedge, pointed up at an angle toward the ceiling.

I suggest this because if the cabinet is at ear level, that horn tweeter may be too intense for you.

Some three-way cabs have an L-pad (volume control) on the tweeter to help prevent that eyeball-popping treble.

Tony Wright
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Stillwater, OK

I never met a calorie I didn't like.
Jun 9th, 2017 06:35 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I am unfamiliar with "Digital Audio" brand speakers and did not find them in a Yahoo search, a search of eBay and a search of Musician's Friend.

Your description gives me one "minor" area of concern. Often, I have noticed that many "crossover" speakers that are used for home stereo, entertainment centers and small PA speakers will come equipped with "stereo clips".

To me, "stereo clips" suggests two of the spring loaded clamps that will hold a bare end wire. That is very rarely used in PA systems and live sound situations. My experience has been that those cabinets built to "crossover" both applications, "MAY" (or may not) have lesser quality speakers and/or other components.

However, the specifications of 400 Watts suggests that this cabinet was built to handle some power and with the mid range and high frequency speaker/horn also suggests that it was intended to support "full range" of the frequency spectrum.

Your PVi4B produces about 100 Watts at 8 Ohms, so it should not damage the speaker unless you turn it too high and clip the signal.

Since your plan is to use the equipment for home rehearsals, that should not be a significant concern. I am not discouraging you from the speaker, I am sharing information that will let you consider the possible limitations that this set "might" have.

Keep in mind that even if you did purchase this equipment and discovered you dislike the sound quality or damaged a speaker...every component in a speaker cabinet can be replaced (individually or all at once) with easy to obtain products.

If this speaker is available for you to "try out" at the seller's location (within driving distance) I suggest a simple "try it before you buy it". I would take both guitar and your digital music source (iPhone, notepad, etc).

EDIT TO ADD....
Be sure to take the Peavey PVi4B to power the Digital Audio speaker. (end edit)

BEFORE YOU GO...try the set up thru your guitar amp using a speaker cable out of the line out into your guitar amp to give you a reference for that sound quality to compare to the sound quality of the Digital Audio speaker you are considering.

No "speaker cable"? For no longer (or louder) than your "try it before you buy it" exercise...you could use a guitar cable. I DO NOT SUGGEST THIS FOR DAILY USE. But for a short duration "experiment" it should get you buy. NOTE: A guitar cable is NOT designed to carry a powered signal such as one from an amplifier to a speaker cabinet. They are prone to pick up interference due to the construction.

Speaker cable has two conductors normally made with multi-strand copper wire.

Instrument cable normally has a single wire conductor surrounded by a braided loom ground.

Peegoo's comments about a horn/tweeter near your ear is a concern as well. Laying it horizontal should help with the proximity of the horn/tweeter. A short 2x4 or 4x4 block should help prop it at an angle.

In the end...IGNORE ALL THE ADVICE! Or at least keep it in the back of your mind.

THE REAL TEST? USE YOUR EARS.

"If it sounds good, it IS good." At least for the "try it before you buy it".

You can pick up (or make your own) speaker cable at some point in the future. EDIT TO ADD: "In the very near future..." If you should discover that the 12 inch speaker has "issues" in the future...go buy one online or from a local source. You need advice for that purchase? Just ask, we all have opinions...and the only one that matters is YOURS.

You will make the right choice for YOU. You seem to be doing just fine thus far.

(This message was last edited by Tony Wright at 11:58 PM, Jun 9th, 2017)

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FDP Forum / Miscellaneous and Non-Fender Topics / Sound system for playback of looper and YT backing tracks




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