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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » F/X » » Fender Passport Sound System (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Joseph_Then
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I am considering to purchase Fender Passport Sound System.

Has anyone used this before and how do you find it?
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Joseph Then

Singapore Ventriloquist
chmara
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Tucson, AZ
1890 Posts

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Hauling around Renkus-Heinz Heinz Horns (90 Lbs Each) 1500 Watts of Power + mixer and recorders (120Lbs on wheels) Speaker Stands and Sandbags to anchor them firmly in place -- for a 250 seat or less show is a thing of the past for me. (Still have to do it for 500 or more seats -- but what the heck. )

BUT BEWARE THE BARGAIN. Make sure you get the PD series (I use the 250 as my shows usually are banquets and cocktail parties of 150-200 people,) The old P series sound SUX - and is maybe worth a little less than its discounted price.!!!! The newer PD series speakers were designed by Bose and have a rich full sound, can carry voice and music without without scratch or boom. Put stands with the speakers (for lift) and they still sound great. The older P series speaker system sounds like your old grammar school principal-to-classroom announcement system by comparison.

Weighing in at about 80 lbs with padded cover and built in wireless--it is easy to maneuver. BUT DO NOT get the useless luggage carrier they supply for extra bucks. . You can get injured with it instead of a rock-n-roller. Better yet -- have a neighborhood kid build you a mover out of a skateboard.,

Their wireless mike is older VHF un-encoded and could be a problem if you travel to places with nearby TV towers or a fire station across the street. Only had this happen once in 18 months though -- and I had another wireless rig to plug into the open channels. Set my Wireless Wizardry Stuff right into it.

As far as talking over the music and having the music dip automatically under the voice -- the feature is not quite ready for the fast comments and transitions of a magician, rather than those of a lecturer. And I have found no one specific setting on it works in all rooms -- so leave fiddle time if this is important..

The input and mixing system are much more than adequate -- and you do not have to fiddle with trims and filters as I do on my Mackies to get the room working well. PD 250 comes with 2 wired mikes -- which I use on stands for volunteers. I retain the wireless portable for me. If you are doing a lot of outdoors, I have had nothing but good reports about their battery option -- but have not used it myself.

In all -- my PD 250 gets a THREE THUMBS UP.
Gregg (C. H. Mara) Chmara

Commercial Operations, LLC

Tucson, AZ



C. H. Mara Illusion & Psychic Entertainments
glodmagic
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USA
501 Posts

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Passport PD150 and PD250= My favorite System!

I HAVE OWNED AND HAVE USED THE FOLLOWING:
Anchor Explorer (nice sound - rugged)
Anchor Liberty (rugged took lots of my abuse)
Anchor AN1000 and AN100 (I use these at Birthdays)
Carvin Stagemate 400 (good value but different animal)
SoundTech AL10R (Great rich sound but heavy wood cabinet)
JBL EON 15 G2 (powerful but ugh..)
Kustom Profile (klunky pack - sound disappointing - sold right away)
Peavey Escort (OK but no comparison - used only 3 shows)
and more (most are gone on EBay now)

As you can tell I am obsessice compulsive on buying audio. My wife will kick me out of the house if I keep this up.

I agree with everything Gregg says above. The Wireless receiver OPTION although being VHF works great for me, is internal (no wires hanging) and you can always plug in any UHF system to the unit which is what other systems generally force you to do anyway. With the wireless neatly inside I use the Battery Pack they sell to operate this unit outside. Others have to kluge a battery to run the wireless system but the Passport has it all contained. That battery is AMAZING and runs my system for hours outside at full 250 Watt volume!

The PD is a HUGE difference from the older P series so when people make comparison responses make sure we are talking apples to apples.

I use the PD150 and the PD250 on a regular basis depending on venue and audience size.

If you are on a tight budget the Carvin Stagemate S400 was a good alternative for me but is a different animal.
Remember ANY of your posts here can be Googled by your customers and Clients. Just entering your name in Google can bring up your negative comments that stay for years!
Regan
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I own the Passport PD250 System also. I agree with what has been said already. I love mine. I am a singer/guitarist and I use it in smaller venues. I don't have the wireless option in mine.

Gregg, does the cover and wireless add that much weight?

I am hoping to get the battery pack soon. I have a large sound system and a medium sized system, but I love the simplicity of the Fender Passport.

I have been wanting to try out a Carvin Stagemate because they are so light and portable.
Glodmagic, you are obviously experienced with sound systems, what don't you like about the Stagemate?
I have a Carvin Mixer for my mid-sized system and some Carvin moniter speakers. My former bass player used Carvin amps and my band had some Carvin power amps and speakers. Their prices are hard to beat and their products have been good.

Regan
Mister Mystery
Joseph_Then
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I intend to get PD250 but can it cover as large as 500 people indoor?
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Joseph Then

Singapore Ventriloquist
glodmagic
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No question that Carvin products are excellent in value and sound great. I used my Stagemate a lot. I recommend it for the price but not a fair comparison. I am not comparing quality here (NOT comparing a Ford to Mercedes) I am comparing TYPE of unit (Carvin is a nice car and Passport is an SUV).

The (PD model) Passport is loaded with features including an awesome digital feedback remover. You can actually walk in front of them without feedback (going for a volunteer, etc). The BOSE quality in the PD series is superior. It is a true stereo for your preshow music and the setup is FAST as it unlatches and all the cords and mic are in a compartment.

The internal wireless adds virtually no added weight. It weighs less than a microphone.

500 people? The PD250 can do that with room to spare.

Don't write off the PD150. It has become my favorite because of size-weight. My wife/assistant can carry it in with one hand with no problem yet it opens to a sweet 2 speaker system. It is great for Banquet rooms.
Remember ANY of your posts here can be Googled by your customers and Clients. Just entering your name in Google can bring up your negative comments that stay for years!
Michael Messing
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Knoxville, TN
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Regan, the Carvin StageMate is not a lightweight PA! It's relatively heavy because of the sealed lead acid battery it runs off of. I would estimate that my StageMate, which has two lead acid batteries installed, weighs about 42 lbs.

As Walter (Glod) mentioned above, the StageMate is made for a different circumstance than a Passport system. It's battery-powered so it can be used at a picnic without needing and extension cord. (The Passport systems can also run off a battery system but that's an expensive addition. About $200-$250 if I remember correctly.)

The StageMate is extremely convenient but doesn't cover all circumstances. I use a pair of JBL Eon G2 10 powered speakers for my larger shows. The StageMate is for smaller shows and outdoor performances where electricity is hard to get to.
jkvand
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Johnstown, PA
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Based on the reviews I read at the Magic Café, I purchased a Fender PD150 about 6 months ago, and I LOVE IT! It works like a charm for everything I have needed to use it for. You won't be sorry if you get this one - the sound quality and portability make it a great package for the traveling performer. Regarding the weight, my PD150 weighs 36 pounds. I bought the speaker stands and microphone stands, which come in a separate carry bag and weigh about 20 pounds or so. I can carry both from my car to the performing venue in one trip. I also purchased that DC/DC converter kit, which cost me about $50 on ebay, and I use a 12V car battery that cost me about $30 at WalMart. Fender does sell a 12V battery in a hard plastic carry case, but it typically goes for $109-$129, and the hard shell case just wasn't worth that much to me, so I went with the car battery and it has served me very well. I highly recommend this sound system to you! And, thanks to all of you other reviewers out there (glodmagic, Magicmikey, et al) who helped me with my decision a few months back!
Chuck Lyons
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Channahon, IL
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I have the passport 250 and it will cover 500 people. I love it and make sure you get the speaker stands too.
I bought mine from Puppet Productions I believe it was 599.00 on sale. I bought the speaker stands latter on the internet for arround $99.00 I beleive. It is a fantastic system.
Lou Hilario
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I have been using the Fender Passport PD250 for the past two years now and it works well for me. I use a Sennheisser Evolution 100 wireless headset with it and it is very clear. I also use a mini disc and a CD player with it.
What I like the most is its portability. I also made a detachable tray to fit on the handle top si I could place the wireless mic receiver, MD and CD player on the tray.
Magic, Illusions, Juggling, Puppet & Parrot Show ^0^
http://www.louhilario.net
kenscott
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I use the PD150 and it covers 500 kids in Elem schools . I see no reason it would not cover 500 people. I have never had to turn it all the way up as well.

Ken
Andy Wonder
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I have the P250 but wish I had purchased the PD150 instead. It has more than enough power for any show I am going to be doing. On the down size is is too heavy. I remove the speakers to carry it around to save my bank.
Andy Wonder, Auckland, New Zealand
Regan
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Andy, I would like to have something smaller for certain venues also.

Magicmikey, I think 42# is better than 55# of the Passport. It looks compact and easier to load, carry, and set-up also.

How much did the extra battery cost? Can it run on AC power too?

Regan
Mister Mystery
Michael Messing
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Regan,

An extra battery for the StageMate runs $39.99 if you buy it from Carvin. (You could probably purchase it for less from a Batteries Plus store.)

The StageMate will run on AC, as well. The cool part is that it charges the battery at the same time as you use it if you have it plugged in!

Michael
chmara
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Tucson, AZ
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Work with your dealer to see if getting BOTH the PD 150 & 250 will earn you a discount. Then -- if you really need to blast those 500 people -- or have an odd ropom (maybe I am the only one who gets them) you can slave the 150 to the 250 or vice-versa. Still lighter and better than a Mackie slave system -- with more versatility for magicians. (I I were still in music I might pop for the full Mackie system -- but I went into magic so I could remain poor.)
Gregg (C. H. Mara) Chmara

Commercial Operations, LLC

Tucson, AZ



C. H. Mara Illusion & Psychic Entertainments
Joseph_Then
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Thanks for all the reply. You guys make me very tempted to buy it right now.

But will have to budget it and will get it before the school holidays.

I will add my own reviews about the system when I try it out.
-----



Joseph Then

Singapore Ventriloquist
paulajayne
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London England
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Hi

I use a PD150 and with shure 1710 mixer have had myself a solo singer and a small group through it at the same time. The Bose drivers give it a good full range sound.

Paula
Paula Jay - Magic to Remember -
---------------------------------
I once wrote a book on elephants, I think paper would have been better.
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Dario
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I own one and is highly recomended. I have perfomed with it even on the street for 200-300 persons.
Practical and very good sound quality.
Perhaps a little big and heavy...
It would be a great adition some little wheels for carry it better

Darío
Regan
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Hey Dario,

That is a "wheel" good idea!

Regan
Mister Mystery
Bobcape
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Rapid City, SD
470 Posts

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I have rented the Peavey Escort 2000 numerous times and I really like it. Can anyone that has used both systems compare the Peavey Escort 2000 with the Fender Passport PD150. I plan on buying one in the next few days. Thanks you very much.

Bob
Be Amazed! + Enjoy The Magic!
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