Jump to content


Please note: You can easily log in to MPN using your Facebook account!

Electric straight into PA


LiveMusic

Recommended Posts



  • Replies 21
  • Created
  • Last Reply
Originally posted by LiveMusic:

I plug my acoustic into the PA with no amp and all is well. What about an electric? Sounds like a dumb question but as is often the case, I just don't know. I mean, I guess it'll work but how well?

It will work. However, most electric guitars sound anemic through the PA. Most acoustic pick-up systems have pre-amps which boost the signal. Your electric will probably sound better if you have a distortion box, or some other pre-amp type pedal in line before the PA. You don't have to have the pedal set to distort. It will just give some life to your signal.

Vinny Cervoni

vcbluzman@hotmail.com

www.bluzberrypi.com

www.42ndstband.com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What kind of sound are you going for?

 

Guitar pickups don't have enough output to drive a board direct, your acoustic has a built in pre-amp (hence the battery). An electric with active pickups may be better. For a clean electric tone, it probably won't "feel" as responsive as a guitar amp. You will need to crank the input buffer on the PA, and the impedence will affect your sound.

 

Better if you use a direct box, or rackmount type pre-amp or a Pod-type thing, you will have options, because that will drive you up to "line" level.

 

Another consideration is that you will lose control of your stage volume, and be at the mercy of the monitor system.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Impedance missmatch bogs down the pickups. But with any sort of a pramp in line, you should be okay. I'd still use a direct box if the PA head was more than 20 feet away.

 

Now, why would you want to do this? Unless you are using a pod or something.... because the amp is a big part of the sound. Some little road shows do it to keep down the amount of equpiment that they have to shlep. But if the sound is really, really important to you, you might consider a smallish amp instead.

 

Also, unless the system has multiple monitor mixes, that means that your signal has to be in every monitor mix. I won't put up with that on stage. I hate having instruments in my monitors unless I really -need- them.

 

Bill

Bill

"I believe that entertainment can aspire to be art, and can become art, but if you set out to make art you're an idiot."

 

Steve Martin

 

Show business: we're all here because we're not all there.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

With your Carvin PA the electric will work as long as you don't have the dB cut swicth on. That being said, it ain't gonna sound all that great though you might run into a DI box first.

Of course, the effects on that PA are not designed for electric guitar either so they won't sound very good so you'll need pedals.

 

Our Joint

 

"When you come slam bang up against trouble, it never looks half as bad if you face up to it." The Duke...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Typically, iof you are using an electric guitar through a PA, the easiest way to sound somewhat like a real rig is to use a guitar multifex with speaker simulation curves, etc. The multifex serves as impedance buffer/DI, and provides a better gain structure, as well as effects and maybe even amp modeling (which is another level of sophistication beyond cabinet simulation).
.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by daklander:

With your Carvin PA the electric will work as long as you don't have the dB cut swicth on. That being said, it ain't gonna sound all that great though you might run into a DI box first.

Of course, the effects on that PA are not designed for electric guitar either so they won't sound very good so you'll need pedals.

In lieu of what you said (box / pedals)... is there any decent very cheap, SMALL amp?

 

Reason I am asking this I want to know if it will even work. I was thinking of shopping for a CHEAP used electric, like a used Squire. Sometimes, someone sits in and I only have acoustic. Plus, I might move towards backing tracks and I could eventually play electric on some songs.

 

Problem is, I literally am running out of room hauling all this crap around in a Ford Taurus. If there is any way I can pull it off, I'll buy one of those Bose pole systems. This 12-channel Carvin and 15" speakers... there is definite value in "compact" like the Bose. Of course, it's moot till I get the dough but that's what I'd like to have.

 

I got a friend coming down next week who offered to "back me" in some way. He can't play a lick but likes being part of "something." I'm trying to figure out what all to get if he offers to do it for real.

> > > [ Live! ] < < <

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by LiveMusic:

...In lieu of what you said (box / pedals)... is there any decent very cheap, SMALL amp? ...

Sounds like you are in search of a Roland Cube 15 . About $100 street price if I'm not mistaken. Small, inexpensive and very versatile. You can even use the headphone output to drive your PA system. This way you could take advantage of the amp modeling circuitry this thing has and drive a larger room.

 

Cosmo has one. Maybe he can comment.

Mudcat's music on Soundclick

 

"Work hard. Rock hard. Eat hard. Sleep hard. Grow big. Wear glasses if you need 'em."-The Webb Wilder Credo-

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by LiveMusic:

In lieu of what you said (box / pedals)... is there any decent very cheap, SMALL amp?

 

I got a friend coming down next week who offered to "back me" in some way. He can't play a lick but likes being part of "something." .[/QB]

Well, I've mentioned the Vox Brian May model amp. It has a direct out, I think. (I could go look.... maybe later....) Weighs nothing, about the size of a cigar box, but about 5 inches deep. Costs about $150.

 

He wants to be a part of something? How about a part of the guys who pay for their own gear? Otherwise, I'll bet that there are any number of players who would like to sit in who know how to play.

 

Bill

"I believe that entertainment can aspire to be art, and can become art, but if you set out to make art you're an idiot."

 

Steve Martin

 

Show business: we're all here because we're not all there.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Will an electric guitar work through the P.A? Well, my trio practices through a mixing board with Roland electronic drums. My bassist and myself are plugged into Line 6 pods and we both use lots of pedals. I've got a VOX wah>Boss Tu2 tuner>ZOOM 707II Guitar multi-effects(with built in tuner)>Ibanez TS9 Tubescreamer>MXR Phase 90>ZOOM 508 Delay(which also has a tuner). We monitor useing headphones and we don't annoy the neighbors in the 100 unit townhome complex where we rehearse. We tape ourselves and it always comes out sounding pretty good. I'm sure it would sound just as good if we were plugged into a P.A. system like that but we would still need earphones. The headphones we use are bulky Sony's and so far we've never tried it like that but I'm sure it would work.
Don't sell anything. Just keep it all. Let it pile up and see it grow tall. Up thru the roof and into the sky. More is always better so pile it sky high.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

You can plug an electric straight into a PA, but I suspect you'll never be happy with it. I've had to do it once or twice (when asked to sit in with a group for a couple songs). The tone was really thin, and it was a total PITA trying to hear myself - they didn't have a good monitor system, so most of my sound was coming through the main speakers (which were in front of me :rolleyes: ). The idea of using some sort of pre-amp (pedal, or whatever) will help the tone, but it's still going to be a strange experience to play that way.

 

Something like the Cube might be good for what you want, or, I've been told by people whose opinions I trust that the Vox AD15VT Valvetronix is quite good. It's pretty small, and not very expensive. I've never played it myself, so give it shot to see if it might work for you.

May all your thoughts be random!

- Neil

www.McFaddenArts.com

www.MikesGarageRocks.com

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

About a couple of years ago the leadership at my church decided to have all the amplified instruments (guitars, bass, and keyboards) routed directly into the PA system instead of using amplifiers. The guitar players on the praise and worship team were a little slow to accept this change, but over time they came around, as the music has actually sounded better, and louder, since the changeover. The electric and acoustic guitars and electric bass are all run through Line 6 POD amp modelers and from the PODs into the sound system (I'm not sure what brand the sound system is, but I do know that it's pretty near state-of-the-art and comes with a very powerful preamp), and the team's guitar players have found the PODs very much to their liking. One of those guitar players is an awesomely gifted musician by the name of Jeff Pardi, whose solo and improvisational style can best be compared to that of Jeff Beck. I'm on the team myself as part of the choir--someday, who knows, I'll end up playing guitar on the team. The team's musical style, by the way, is contemporary (this ain't your grandma's church music!), and some of the material that we've been presenting lately has actually bordered on hard-edge rock.

Robert J. ("Bob") Welch III

 

"If you were the only person who ever lived, God still would have sent Jesus His only Son to die on the cross for YOU, because that is how much HE LOVES YOU!"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Some more "small/cheap" options:

 

- SansAmp pedal - $99

- J-Station modeler - $99

- Yamaha MagicStomp - $199

- Line6 Pod 2.0 - $199

 

Any of these could work "ok" direct into a PA... I know there are other "low cost" modelers as well... just haven't tried them.

 

guitplayer

I'm still "guitplayer"!

Check out my music if you like...

 

http://www.michaelsaulnier.com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I didn't read all of the replies... but yeah. From what I read, they're on the ball.

 

Plugging it (passive electric pickups - active is better) into the desk will work, but the signal will be very low, and you'll need to crank the gain - that means cranking the noisefloor, and yucky noise with your signal.

 

A D.I. box (or Direct Injection box - commonly known as a Direct Input box) will boost your signal from instrument level to line level - or mic level if you have a box with the option. Then into the desk its a breeze.

 

Electrics sound pretty crappy without an amp to give it colour though. If you're going to do that, get a POD, or something like that - or a pedal of some kind, then go into the DI, then the desk. its ALWAYS a good idea to DI an instrument not miced, although some things (like the pod, I believe) come out at line level anyway. so yeah.

 

Most (should be all) venues / PA rigs will have a DI box. Just ask the engineer.

"Money, Bitchez and Cheese!"

 

http://www.playspoon.com/nollykin/files/voxline.gif

 

"I never thought about it, and I never stopped to feel -

But I didn't want you telling me just what to think was real.

 

And as simple as it comes, I only wanted to express-

...But with expression comes regret - and I don't want you hating me."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

First, the answer to your question...

 

Yes, with a D.I. you can plug directly into a PA but... you wouldn't want to. Yeachhh!!

 

Besides the impedance mismatch (corrected by the D.I.), the reason guitar amps are still sold (rather than every guitar player running through a PA) is because the inherent limitations of guitar amps and guitar speakers became part of what makes a great guitar sound. Guitar speakers, in particular, are very limited in frequency range compared to hi-fi or PA speakers. The result pairs well with the signal output from a set of high impedance guitar pickups into the pre-amp and amplification circuits in a guitar amp.

 

Now using a POD, et. al. is a whole different story. They are designed to model the timbre of a guitar amp for recording or amplification through a PA. They do a respectable job, but it's not the same. But for your purposes any one of them will work admirably, Duke

 

Originally posted by Nollykin:

...A D.I. box (or Direct Injection box - commonly known as a Direct Input box) will boost your signal from instrument level to line level - or mic level if you have a box with the option. Then into the desk its a breeze...

Typically, Nolly, a D.I. does not[/i] convert instrument level to line level. Most D.I.'s (and certainly all passive D.I.'s) simply transform high impedance inputs to low impedance outputs. This does increase the apparent signal level, but not anywhere near line level. It will reduce the amount of additional input gain necessary to bring the input to line level. There are a few D.I.'s that act as bump boxes, which are set to increase a -10dBv level to +4dBv but you rarely see them. Straight bump boxes are available as well. These are designed to interface consumer CD players, VHS audio, etc. with high end professional audio gear.

It's easiest to find me on Facebook. Neil Bergman

 

Soundclick

fntstcsnd

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by fantasticsound:

Typically, Nolly, a D.I. does not[/i] convert instrument level to line level. Most D.I.'s (and certainly all passive D.I.'s) simply transform high impedance inputs to low impedance outputs. This does increase the apparent signal level, but not anywhere near line level. It will reduce the amount of additional input gain necessary to bring the input to line level.

Interesting. According to all I've been taught, and the ones I have used (Albeit active D.I boxes that have required phantom power) certainly got very close to line. But then, I never measured it. And it's been a while since I actually read up on them, so you're probably correct. I'm aware of the fact that it balances the output and impedence levels, but I was under the impression that most boosted to a line level signal?

 

Again. Probably wrong.

"Money, Bitchez and Cheese!"

 

http://www.playspoon.com/nollykin/files/voxline.gif

 

"I never thought about it, and I never stopped to feel -

But I didn't want you telling me just what to think was real.

 

And as simple as it comes, I only wanted to express-

...But with expression comes regret - and I don't want you hating me."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Countryman! or any DI or preamp. If you're not in a high volume situation, use a mic. Sounds way better. Electric in the PA? Talk about tone drain, however it may work somewhat with a Tech21 Sansamp.
Down like a dollar comin up against a yen, doin pretty good for the shape I'm in
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The band that I was in was run by a guy who has been playing live shows 5 nights a week for the past 42 years. When I joined his band, he insisted that I could not use an amplifier on stage. All guitars were run through effects pedals or effects units and then directly into the board.

 

The end result was amazing (once we got used to it). No guitar volume battles on stage! The monitor outputs were the same as the stack outputs only no drums and less vocals. Basically, it was like playing in a studio. You could here were you were in the mix. You could blend yourself into the sound or hit the strings harder and stand out a bit. It was great.

 

Now the guy that ran the band was a mixing genius so the sound he got from our guitars was amazing. I have never personally tried to do it so I'm not sure how hard it would be. I can tell you that it can be done and it sounds great. I highly recomend it. I can't stand playing in a band now where there are Amps on stage. All I can hear is myslef and a muted version of everyone else.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by bpark@prorec.com:

Impedance missmatch bogs down the pickups. But with any sort of a pramp in line, you should be okay. I'd still use a direct box if the PA head was more than 20 feet away.

 

Now, why would you want to do this? Unless you are using a pod or something.... because the amp is a big part of the sound. Some little road shows do it to keep down the amount of equpiment that they have to shlep. But if the sound is really, really important to you, you might consider a smallish amp instead.

 

Also, unless the system has multiple monitor mixes, that means that your signal has to be in every monitor mix. I won't put up with that on stage. I hate having instruments in my monitors unless I really -need- them.

 

Bill

Bill

Ooops Edited because I hit enter before I could type anything.

 

There is a young band that does benefits and some biker gigs with us. The guitar player walks up with his pod and guitar and goes straight to the board (our board). He gets a GREAT tone, he can carry his whole rig in one hand, and our bass player aka the soundman loves it. If there is any way you can try it before you buy it, you may be surprised!

Once I thought I saw you, in a crowded, hazy, bar........

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by A String:

The band that I was in was run by a guy who has been playing live shows 5 nights a week for the past 42 years. When I joined his band, he insisted that I could not use an amplifier on stage. All guitars were run through effects pedals or effects units and then directly into the board.

 

The end result was amazing (once we got used to it). No guitar volume battles on stage! The monitor outputs were the same as the stack outputs only no drums and less vocals. Basically, it was like playing in a studio. You could here were you were in the mix. You could blend yourself into the sound or hit the strings harder and stand out a bit. It was great.

 

Now the guy that ran the band was a mixing genius so the sound he got from our guitars was amazing. I have never personally tried to do it so I'm not sure how hard it would be. I can tell you that it can be done and it sounds great. I highly recomend it. I can't stand playing in a band now where there are Amps on stage. All I can hear is myslef and a muted version of everyone else.

Well said, A String! Pretty much the main reason my church decided to run amplified instruments directly into the sound system is so that everyone on the platform (stage) could more clearly hear themselves AND each other, and also to improve the clarity of what everyone in the congregation (audience) hears, and it has pretty much worked out that way. Not to say that there has ever been any guitar volume battles at my church, but anyhow! :D

Robert J. ("Bob") Welch III

 

"If you were the only person who ever lived, God still would have sent Jesus His only Son to die on the cross for YOU, because that is how much HE LOVES YOU!"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by The Lone Chicken:

Originally posted by A String:

The band that I was in was run by a guy who has been playing live shows 5 nights a week for the past 42 years. When I joined his band, he insisted that I could not use an amplifier on stage. All guitars were run through effects pedals or effects units and then directly into the board.

 

The end result was amazing (once we got used to it). No guitar volume battles on stage! The monitor outputs were the same as the stack outputs only no drums and less vocals. Basically, it was like playing in a studio. You could here were you were in the mix. You could blend yourself into the sound or hit the strings harder and stand out a bit. It was great.

 

Now the guy that ran the band was a mixing genius so the sound he got from our guitars was amazing. I have never personally tried to do it so I'm not sure how hard it would be. I can tell you that it can be done and it sounds great. I highly recomend it. I can't stand playing in a band now where there are Amps on stage. All I can hear is myslef and a muted version of everyone else.

Well said, A String! Pretty much the main reason my church decided to run amplified instruments directly into the sound system is so that everyone on the platform (stage) could more clearly hear themselves AND each other, and also to improve the clarity of what everyone in the congregation (audience) hears, and it has pretty much worked out that way. Not to say that there has ever been any guitar volume battles at my church, but anyhow! :D
Yup. Once you get used to it, it's hard to go back to the other way. For those of you opposed to the idea; like BriBaby said, "Give it a try, you may be surprised".
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...