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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » F/X » » Best School Assembly Sound System? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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chris mcbrien
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Chicago
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Hi everyone!
I'm in the market to improve my sound. I have a MIPRO with battery pack and stand. It's ok but not the "surround" sound I want. Have any ideas? Also, I've got Vern the Bird, and have been using ....I'm so embarassed!... a Boom Box to do the voice with! The sound is actually not that bad, it's a big "boom box". At the same time, I hate the look of something like that on stage. Is there an economical and easy-to-pack system out there that any of you would recommend that would allow me to use my wireless headset (I have one of those nice, thin mics) and my mipro as well as getting Vern on a speaker...without it all being on the MIPRO?
Chris
kenscott
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I use the Fender Passport 150... a lot of discussion in the FX section of the Café.

Ken
Dennis Michael
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Southern, NJ
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For most the boom box is fine and works well with Vern the Bird as well as the Vanishing Bandana.

However, I agree with Ken. If one can afford the Fender Passport 150, it is a good system. Our SAM club has use this one for the past 5 years and I too have the same as well as the powerful 250.
Dennis Michael
magic4u02
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Eternal Order
Philadelphia, PA
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I will second the Fender Passport 150 system. I use it all the time and I have not found the need for the 250. For most schools I have done in the past, the 150 has put out quite enough hi-quality sound without a problem at all.

I also am now running my entire show from an iPod that is set with a playlist that is my entire show line-up. This is new for me, but it patches in nicely to the Fender system and I do not have to carry CD's or switch cd's in the show.

If you are working very large events and large auditoriums, then the 250 might be a better option for you.

Kyle
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wizardofsorts
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Chicago, IL
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I don't own a passport (I hope to get one soon)but I've been told to make sure it is the PD-150 or 250. The "D" is the "deluxe" model and uses Bose technology. I've been told by multiple sources that the sound of the D model is much better then the standard model.
Edd
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magic4u02
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Philadelphia, PA
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I have the D model and it works wonderfully. The sound quality is top notch and the Fender passort series of systems are just a breaze to carry, set-up and take down. I went from a time of 30-45 mins to run and set up sound for my theater show to now being able to do it all in under 10-15 mins tops. It just is that simple and easy to use and takes up less space.

My biggest conquest this off season has been for me to get rid of my boom box and my cases of cd's and get a set-up where I can now run my entire show, customize it to any songs and voice overs I want and never have to bring a sounf system, boom box or my cd cases again. I have done this so far with my iPod hooked into the fender and using a remote I can control it with. It has been wonderful for me so far.

Kyle
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Mr. Phil
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Hi Chris, not only being a full time magician I also have a degree in tech theatre and currently the Stage Mgr.& Tech Dir. at Magic Island in Houston, TX so here is my 2 cents worth. I whole heatly beleive in seperate components. Now don't freak out it's not the complicated. You have your speakers, power amp, eq, and a sound board. Depending on your venue will depend on how much power you amp will need and the power rating of your speakers.
Here is way. The Fender is a good system but if it breaks down so does your whole system. In a componet system if one item goes out, you take that one item in for repair and they (repair people) will let you use or rent you a one until your's is fixed. Understand? The rest of the system still works.
The sound quailty out of this type of system is better and you have much more control over your total sound, mic, music etc. If you want some more 2 cents let me know.
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magic4u02
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Philadelphia, PA
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I had a system like described above and it worked great for me. I just did not liek the fact that it just took up way too much space and a lot of time for me to set everything up. I wanted something more compact and could set upo easily no matter where I was at or what situation I was in. For me, the Fender system gave me what I was searching for and has paid itself off ten-fold.

Certainly this is just my own humble opinion. If you want a system that can give you top sound and that you can customize etc., then maybe the system described above is for you. It is really based upon your own needs and wants.

I just love what I am using now and it has served me quite well.

Kyle
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Tod Todson
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Kyle,

In using your iPod, do you have each song in a seperate Playlist, or all of them in one Playlist? I'm sure you've seen the posts on creating pauses. Another option is to create a 30 minute pause (more then you'll ever need) and place this "song" in between each of the other ones.

Tod
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The Great Smartini
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Kyle,

I am currently using the cd player route but am starting to look at upgrading for this year. I noticed that you use an Ipod...do you need the regular one or can you use the mini which I think holds either 1,000 or 1,500 songs? Also, how has the remote for the Ipod worked out (it sounds positive). Finally, what is the price range for your Fender system and (i'm assuming) wireless mike. Thanks for your help with this it is much appreciated. I always read your posts on topics of interest with great care because I respect your opinion. All the best!

jeff
Parson Smith
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I use a Passport 150 and it doeas a great job.
With an auto battery jumpstart, it can be used outside.
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magic4u02
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Tod,

I constuct each show as it's own playlist. I then place all the songs, voice ovbers, pre-show and post show music all in the exact order that they will be done in the show. This way all I have to do is go to the right playlist and my entire show is set for me to go. I then use a remote to stop and then go to the next track on the playlist. It makes it very simple and efficient and with a remote... I do not need to have the puases placed in as a song.

I currently am just using a mini. Althgough one would think it would not hold much, I have in it over 75 songs and I have not oput a dent in the total memory it can hold. Since I am using this ONLY for my shows and stage performances, this should do plenty well for me.

Also, becuase I have the mini, I can also use the mini boombox speaker set up for my b-day shows. This is a small speaker system that has a docking station built in so my mini iPod goes right into it.

A Passport 150 goes for around $500-$600 depending upon where you get it at. Look around for the best buy you can. It has worked wonders for me and my stage shows. It comes with a very strong and reliable wired mic that goes into the back of the unit. I also got speaker stands and a speaker stand case to carry everything in. This works out best for me since I do a lot of festival gigs.

Hope this helps.

Kyle
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sspanks
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Atlanta GA
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Has anybody heard of this... Florida Magic PAS767 portable PA system.
Would this be okay for smaller kids shows? Anybody used this unit?

Thanks,
-stephen
-stephen
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chris mcbrien
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Chicago
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Wow, you guys are great!
I just got back from my Grandma's funeral last night about 6 hours away ( I left the day before, right after I posted this, actually). Lots of great advice to think about. I totally like the idea of convienence (I think we all do!), at the same time the idea of seperate components is good, too, for a few reasons mentioned by Phil as well as my own. I'm going to look into both and see what I end up feeling good about. Thanks very much, all of you!
Chris
glodmagic
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For school shows we use a Fender Passport PD150 (sometimes we use a PD250)
http://www.fenderaudio.com/gear/gear.php?partno=0692005003

an iPod,
http://www.apple.com/ipod/

and a StageCue controller
http://www.leskini.com/stagecue/intro_pro.htm
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magic4u02
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Philadelphia, PA
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Great links there Glod. I have everything except for the last item you mentioned. I am looking into it and reading up on it. It sounds great. I have the Fender and the iPod and so far I have loved both of them and use them every chance I can get.

Kyle
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James Adamson
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Deatsville - Holtville - Slapout, AL
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In my opinion as I am part-owner of a Pro-Sound Company, the Componet route is the "Best" way to go as suggested by Mr. Phil. The only difference I would suggest would be to use a Digital Signal Processor (DSP) which converts the analog signal out of the mixer and converts it to digital. Graphic EQ's, Parametrics, Notch Filters, Compressor and other such are built into one unit.

The componet route will cost more generally and it is not as portable.

We are a MIPRO rep and I highly recommend their wireless microphones!

If portablity is want you want then Fender, Yahama, and others make varies portable systems, some more portable than others (Fender very portable, size of speaker could be a issue).

Also a word of note if you have extra money spend it on good speakers.

Again, this is my opinion, but the main thing is to buy what you need and want you to get out of the system.
Be remembered for performing what looks like MAGIC, not skill.
magic4u02
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Philadelphia, PA
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James,

Nothing personal at all mind you. I just wonder that most magician's do not know that much about sound to warrant them getting a full fledged system in parts like you have suggested. I think it would possibly be too confusing for them to understand.

If the magician knows sound as much as you surely do, and if they are an expert like yourself, then I think going that route only makes perfect and logical sense.

However, if the magician does not know much about sound and wants a good quality system that is easy to carry, easy to set up and easy to run and provides quality sound, then perhaps they may find themselves going in a different direction.

As a sound expert, what would be your advice to a magician who wants good sound, wants to carry light and set up quickly but does not know much about sound? What systems would you reccomend? I look forward to your ideas. =)

Kyle
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MarkTripp
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Well, I use the same set up (fender and ipod), as Kyle. Also I have a 50 watt pyle pro in my lefler table that I use for small schools, the larger for bigger schools. My wireless mic is the only thing seperate from the system.

I do school shows almost 5 days a week for the entire school year.

IF the school has a good system, I plug into theirs. If not I set up mine.

I have had NO problems with the Fender, nothing has broken, etc.

If you are going to worry about breaking things, or them breaking down, then get a radio shack system. There is a radio shack in EVERY town and they can fix or replace as your warrenty says.

For me, I find what I have to be perfect, and only regrett that Pyle Pro doesn't make pa's anymore and I can't get more of the little systems.
todd75
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For me, I use a ANCHOR LIBERTY system and boy does it rock! I actually just bought it and the sound is by far the best I have ever heard out of any system. Of course the price is way up there as well but you are going to pay for quality. The thing I like best about it is the fact that it can be run on battery instead of being plugged in, if you want. I paid right at $900.00 for it but it was well worth the investement.
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