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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The little darlings » » sound systems for small parties? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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p.b.jones
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Milford Haven. Pembrokeshire wales U.K.
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HI,
I know that I am going against the general
opinion here. But I do not use a sound system for parties of less than 35 children.

I used to as all the books say do it. However, I found that the children tend to become noisier when I did use a mike for a small crowd. I think that it is better to lower your voice for a noisy crowd. this forces them to keep quiet or miss what is happening. I have never suffered any form of voice strain (though I am naturally Gobby). does anyone else work like this?
Phillip
Cheshire Cat
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Wilmslow, UK
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Hello Phillip,

You work in the same climate as us. Don't you find in winter especially your voice can easily develop a 'frog' - especially after a hot houseparty, and those Club and Company Christmas parties with smokers - they destroy my voice! As en ex. muso. I was always quite knowledgeable about amps and after many years I just use the LANEY brand. They are not dear, last for over a decade without problems and not too heavy. Keyboard practice combos are ideal for small parties - about 15 watts - and we have larger (40/50 watts) that will even fill a huge club say on Halloween night with 120 kids and parents. Feedback? Keep the amp. to one side, preferably slightly in front of your performance line (procedure marks) - never behind you. Smile
Peter Marucci
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P.B., that's is exactly how I work.
In fact, I find it a very rare venue where I have to bring my own sound system, although I do have one.
Under about 100 people and you shouldn't need one.
More than that and the venue should be such that they have a good one there.
But the bottom line is still: Find out beforehand!
p.b.jones
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Milford Haven. Pembrokeshire wales U.K.
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Hi Ace parties,
I normally find that the parties you speak of
Club and christmas parties tend to have more than 35 children so I do use the amp I have a phillips studio 2 (over 20 years old now)
I plug my mini disc into this for games ext and with puting it on a speaker stand I have worked for 500 with no problems. I agree about the feed back I always have the unit in front and to the side (which is why I questioned andrews built into the table aprouch I thought it unusal to work behined a table so thought feed back might be a problem for him) The other thing I have found is when buying a radio mic reciever it pays to buy one with a balanced output as this alows much higher volumes before feedback than an unbalanced and less backround hiss. mine has both balanced and unbalanced.
phillip
Andy Wonder
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Auckland, New Zealand
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Those car speakers in my table/box are for the music only. My typical show is in peoples living rooms with 10-15 kids. I don't use a voice amplification system for those parties. I must admit every so often I get a really noisy party where I wish I had one. I have been meaning to buy a new one for some time now. I want to get a system that runs totally on batteries. It will allow me to perform outside under the shade of a tree during summer. It will also give me more flexibility it choosing a spot to set up in other venues. Sometimes the only corner with a power socket happens to be next to the toilet.
I used to take a portable stereo with me that needed to be plugged in. Moving to the battery powered box I have now has made life so much easier.
What type of microphones do you guys recommend? I want to find one of those headset types like Madonna wears.
Andy Wonder, Auckland, New Zealand
Dennis Michael
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Southern, NJ
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These are similar questions I asked Ken Scott. Hopefully he responds, because he uses the ShowTeck on his birthday parties.

I have a Radio Shack 20 Amp PA System. I also have A Feder 25O Heavy System, but not for birthday parties.

All small shows I have a loud voice.
Dennis Michael
kenscott
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WOW! You guys have topics I love to talk and learn about!!!

Sound systems WHERE TO BIGIN?? First I use one in every YES EVERY. Birtdhays I use a small battery system called the fender passport P10W. Plus I use my Showtek. In my shows I use a heasd set mike that is called DPA. This is a very thin headset mic that does not have a HUGE sponge ball on the end. The reason I use a sound system in every show is I think the music is such a BIG part of my show. If anyone is interested I have tons of INFO on my Birthday Dough Video.

I like using a mic even in birthday parties because you get their attention alot easier and they think you are a big Star. Think about it most of the kids you will see , you are the biggest Star they are going to have in their house or talking with them. The mic also shuts talking parents up,( which I don't have a problem with and that is a whole different topic).

Sound sytems do yourself a favor and buy yourself a nicer one instead of a cheap sounding one. You will be happy you did later. Adding music and miking up ads alot to your image and it comes accross that you are veryprofessinal. Most guys dont use it so be different and use it your show.

Best,
Ken
PS Just performed at a magic convention and Jeff McBride was the Headline act. I was merely a warm up. If you have ever seen his act you will see why music is so important. It is not just for the larger shows or theaters.
flourish dude
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from ? But I know where I am going!
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I found a karaoke machine at a flea market for 20.00 They work great and run off of AC or DC power. They also have an input jack for a CD player other wise just use the tapes but a CD can work VIA remote so you don't have to go over and shut it off.
Nothing of the same will bring any change, take action today!
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Jewls
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Michigan-USA
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I use the Apollo PA6000 it's wireless AC/DC it has served me well for many years. It has a built in cassette player, I also plug my personal CD player in. For under $1000.00
I can also run two wireless and 3 wired mics if needed. I can still make one trip in the house!
push one button and I am on. It's great for outdoor events as well!
http://www.grant-ent.com/apollo/PA6000
Smile
danryb
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I use a yamaha monitor speaker (model no. ms60s) 80W. I purchased this a few years after i had the smaller model.
I do not go to a show without it but don't always have to use it. I use a speaker for anything over 20 people. I use the speaker together with my cordless "madona" and from experience (I have been through a ton of different makes) don't be tempted by anything less than "shure". Top notch proffesional equipment for proffesionals i can assure you. I purchased the yamaha about 4 years ago, it's quite heavy but offers the best sound for up to a couple hundred people plus has the advantage of being able to hook up two mics and a disc/tape player and have complete control over the volume of each component seperately (soft music/loud mic and vic-versa).
I agree with P.B - lowering your voice is good for audience control but only once in a while. I couldn't hold the audience for 45 mins like that, they would probably fall asleep. And in any case it is possible to lower your voice with a mic too.
Mike Robbins
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Anchorage, Alaska
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Quote:
On 2002-11-17 18:58, kenscott wrote:
Birtdhays I use a small battery system called the fender passport P10W. Plus I use my Showtek. In my shows I use a heasd set mike that is called DPA.


I just got my DPA and used it in my first show. I love it! Unobtrusive, but with great sound quality.

Does the P10W have input for mini CD's? How many input's does it have? I use the Majiloon system and currently for birthdays and smaller stuff I use a boom box. It doesn't look as good and the P10W sounds pretty nice.

Thanks!

Mike
The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.
Shakespeare
kenscott
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P10w
has one input for your music. I onl;y use this in BD parties if I do other parties outside someone house I use a anchor explorer.

But yes the p10w has one imput for your music.

Yea the DPA is the best they look and feel great.

Ken
Mike Robbins
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Anchorage, Alaska
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Just got my Passport P10W in today. Don't think I'll be using the DPA headset with it. Talk about feedback!

The wireless mic that came with it works fine, although when placed in a holder around my neck fades out like all the other wireless mics do.

I'll need to get an adapter for my mini CD to hook into the line input.

Mike
The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.
Shakespeare
Peter Marucci
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Flourish dude,
For those occasions when I need a sound system and the venue doesn't have one, that is exactly what I use: A karaoke system that I got at Radio Shack.
Purists will argue that the sound lack the required number of "giga-warbles", or whatever the current buzzword might be.
So what?
It works for me and has for several years.
Remember the KISS principle: Keep It Simple, Stupid.
If you're doing a proper show, you've got enough to think about without having to worry about a complicated sound system.
p.b.jones
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Milford Haven. Pembrokeshire wales U.K.
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HI Peter,
the Studio 2 system that I use is just that a Karaoke machine (but it was not called that when I bought it 20 years ago) it is a great machine.
Phillip
Payne
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Seattle
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Since I use no music in my shows I have little use for a sound system and would never think of using one in a party situation as I have never been in a living room that was large enough to warrant using one. Your voice is an acoustic instrument and sounds so much better and natural without mechanical amplifacation. People today rarely hear performers without the aid of microphones and I think thats rather sad. I will only use a mike when the acoustics are really bad or the audience is over a couple of hundred people.
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
Mike Robbins
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Anchorage, Alaska
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I agree with Payne in principle. If it were just my voice I was worried about, I'd prefer not using a mic. However, a lot of my act involves the interaction with volunteers and I can't count on them being able to project their voices.

Mike
The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.
Shakespeare
p.b.jones
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Milford Haven. Pembrokeshire wales U.K.
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Hi,
I have to say that I dissagree with the Payne principle. fine no mike for a small audience, but for larger audiences I think it is essential. I agree that people rarely here perfomers without a mike which in my mind is another reason to use one. I think it was Tommy Cooper (I could be wrong) who said " I went to see ******* at the theatre he did not use a microphone. but rather progected his voice and I was sitting right at the very back and do you know.... I could not hear a bloody word!"
Phillip
Dennis Michael
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Southern, NJ
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Parents are rude when it comes to a magic performance at birthday parties, even more so if they had been drinking.

There are ways to get them involved, however, a sound system can overcome their voices. Then there is that magic word you can get all the kids to say, real loud, "Shhhhhhhhhhhhhhh" that works for a while.
Dennis Michael
magibrad
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Canada
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See now...for us magicians who dont have the money for a sound system its a little tougher. The car speakers in the box are a great idea...it wouldn't be tough to adapt those to be a mic system i doubt..depending on the type of speakers.

But anyway...I always use my voice. Until i have enough for a real sound system, my vocal box is my mic. I found that i can project my voice well in all places except outside. Thats tougher to do.

Anyway...I am saving for a stereo that has a mic jack on it. It has a total of something like 200 watts...and a cd player, which suit my purposes fine. Added with a $30 heatset mic (lol...like the one madonna wears) it works great. I rented the system one weekend..and have been in love ever since.

But the only drawback to lacking a mic system is I lose my voice every time i do a show. Oh well...only 4 more shows before i get a new system i guess.

-Brad
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