LarryR
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B1/B2 bass module and PackLite

Hello,

We are a mostly acoustic band, recently adding an electric bass, occasional electric guitar, and a cajon that we mic to try and get more bass. However we don't seem to be getting sufficient bass for the bass guitar and cajon, and the bass we do get is not traveling very far in crowded noisy environments and/or large rooms. Plus with one L1, we are having trouble getting over the noise in densely crowded bars. We are using an L1 Model 2 with a B2 bass. We have access to another L1 with 2 B1s. Would it be better to use both L1 units (with B2 on one side and B1s on the other), or use one L1 unit, but add the two B1s along with the B2? How can PackLight help us in this scenario? Unfortunately, we sometimes don't have enough room for two L1s on either side.

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ST - Pro
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Re: B1/B2 bass module and PackLite

Hi Larry,

Thanks for the great questions.

Larry posted:

Hello,

We are a mostly acoustic band, recently adding an electric bass, occasional electric guitar, and a cajon that we mic to try and get more bass.

Who are the performers and what do they play/sing?

Example:

Joe sings lead vocal (Shure Beta 58A) and plays acoustic guitar (Taylor)

Mary sings lead vocal (Shure SM58) and plays acoustic guitar (Gibson)

Bob plays bass (Fender Jazz Bass) with a Bass Preamp connected to the ToneMatch mixer

Alice sings backup vocals (Shure SM58) and plays electric guitar through a Fender Blues Jr, mic'd with a Shure SM57

Chuck plays Cajon. We mic the Cajon with a Shure SM57

What kind of mixer(s) do you have?

However we don't seem to be getting sufficient bass for the bass guitar and cajon, and the bass we do get is not traveling very far in crowded noisy environments and/or large rooms.

Plus with one L1, we are having trouble getting over the noise in densely crowded bars. We are using an L1 Model 2 with a B2 bass.

We have access to another L1 with 2 B1s. Would it be better to use both L1 units (with B2 on one side and B1s on the other)

Yes.

, or use one L1 unit, but add the two B1s along with the B2?

No, this won't help in crowded noisy environments.

How can PackLight help us in this scenario?

It will help with support for the Bass and Cajon - but only in situations where you don't have room for two L1 systems.

Unfortunately, we sometimes don't have enough room for two L1s on either side.

If you have room for a single L1 with a B2 plus Packlite and two B1s, you probably have room for two L1s.  The difference in floor space is only 18 inches x 26 inches because of the way the bass modules sit between the legs of the power stands.

Do you perform with the L1 systems behind the band?

ST

Rockerduck
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Re: B1/B2 bass module and PackLite

I'd get a Powered 15 inch speaker. It will carry the acoustic bass much, much better and nowadays they aren't more than 30lbs. in weight.

LarryR
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Re: B1/B2 bass module and PackLite

We are using T8S mixer with appropriate pre-sets and good gain staging. All 8 channels plus aux input. We have to run sound ourselves. In quieter situations we are always happy, but in high noise we don't feel like we are getting it out there. We have wireless transmitters on guitars so we can venture out to hear how things sound. When we bring the bass up to a good level at 50ft, then its overwhelming in the performance area. 

Who are the performers and what do they play/sing?

Player 1: lead singer with ND767 mic.  Martin Acoustic with preamp, Telecaster through Sansamp to T8S aux input.

Player 2: Lead singer with Sen 935e. Martin acoustic with preamp.

Bass Player: Fender P-Bass straight into T8S with P-bass preset

Percussionist: Two Cajons, each miced with SM58s, and backgrounding singing with SM58. 

More often than not, we are forced to play up against a wall, with L1(s) to the side, sometimes slightly ahead if we are trying to maximize volume. 

Sounds like we need to use two L1s more often. 

 

LarryR
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Re: B1/B2 bass module and PackLite

Thanks for the input Donald. I wouldn't know how to go about that as far as getting crossovers right and balancing volume with the other Bose bass units. 

ST - Pro
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Re: B1/B2 bass module and PackLite

Hi Larry,

Thanks for all the great information.

Larry posted:

We are using T8S mixer with appropriate pre-sets and good gain staging.

Checking in - are you running the latest firmware on your T8S?

T4S/T8S Firmware Update Instructions



All 8 channels plus aux input. We have to run sound ourselves.

I can relate.

In quieter situations we are always happy, but in high noise we don't feel like we are getting it out there. We have wireless transmitters on guitars so we can venture out to hear how things sound. When we bring the bass up to a good level at 50ft, then its overwhelming in the performance area. 

Some ideas:

  • Move the bass modules (B2 and B1s) away from the stage area. Use longer NL4 (4-conductor) cables.
  • Use two L1 systems and separate the bass modules (B2 on one side, B1s [together] on the other side). 
    • In some applications we want to bundle all the bass modules together. Because you find the bass overwhelming on the stage, we want to keep the bass from each L1 separated.   If you separate the signals from the Bass and percussionist (see below), there should greater clarity in the low frequencies.
    • Experiment with the distance between the bass modules. The most effective distance will vary from room to room because there will be interaction with the walls.

Who are the performers and what do they play/sing?

Thanks for telling us about your band.  I have played in bands with similar compositions.



Player 1: lead singer with ND767 mic.  Martin Acoustic with preamp, Telecaster through Sansamp to T8S aux input.

Player 2: Lead singer with Sen 935e. Martin acoustic with preamp.

Bass Player: Fender P-Bass straight into T8S with P-bass preset

Percussionist: Two Cajons, each miced with SM58s, and backgrounding singing with SM58. 

Suggestions:

Use both L1 systems

If possible, set up the L1 systems behind the band for the smaller venues

Pan each sound source so that it is heard through only one L1, the closest one.  For example:

Player 1 PAN Hard LEFT:
Lead singer with ND767 mic.  Martin Acoustic with preamp, Telecaster through Sansamp to T8S aux input.

Player 2 PAN Hard RIGHT:
Lead singer with Sen 935e. Martin acoustic with preamp.

Bass Player PAN Hard LEFT:
Fender P-Bass straight into T8S with P-bass preset

Percussionist PAN Hard RIGHT:
Two Cajons, each miced with SM58s, and backgrounding singing with SM58. 

This assumes that Player 1 is closer to the LEFT 1 and Player 2 is closer to the RIGHT L1.

This will give you greater gain-before-feedback, better intelligibility, benefits of the Cocktail Party Effect, and separate the bass load on the power stands and bass modules (by separating the Bass from the Percussion).

When you get into larger spaces, you may want to move the L1 systems to the sides and closer to the front of the stage area. If you turn the L1 systems inward, you may still be able to hear yourselves well enough for monitoring.

More often than not, we are forced to play up against a wall, with L1(s) to the side, sometimes slightly ahead if we are trying to maximize volume. 

I understand. If there's any flexibility in the room layout, I negotiate for stage depth versus width. But sometimes you have deal with the hand that's dealt.

Sounds like we need to use two L1s more often. 

Yes. Using two gives you more options.

It can be difficult to come up with a strategy for more bass out in the audience because perception of bass is so highly dependent on the room acoustics.

Your thoughts?

ST

LarryR
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Re: B1/B2 bass module and PackLite

Thanks ST. These are excellent suggestions! We will work with bass module placement. We have used the cocktail effect with vocals, guitars and bass, but I had not thought about panning bass to one side a percussion to the other. We had been leaving percussion panned up the middle. I can see how that would help. I am guessing the bass player should go to the B2? There will be instances where we will only have one L1. In those cases, can stacking the B1s over the B2 help in any way...either to accentuate the bass or make the system louder? I assume a Packlite would be needed in that case? 

While this may be somewhat off topic, I have been wondering if for larger, high noise gigs, we should try a conventional PA (12" mains and sub) up front, and then use the L1(s) behind us for monitors, and to fill out the sound. What do you think?

Thanks again for your help!

ST - Pro
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Re: B1/B2 bass module and PackLite

Hi Larry,

Larry posted:

Thanks ST. These are excellent suggestions! We will work with bass module placement. We have used the cocktail effect with vocals, guitars and bass, but I had not thought about panning bass to one side a percussion to the other. We had been leaving percussion panned up the middle. I can see how that would help. I am guessing the bass player should go to the B2?

Try it both ways:
Bass player to B2 and Percussion to B1s

Bass player to B1s and Percussion to B2

Even though the B2 can be noticeably louder* than two B1s, I find the B1s are more articulate.

There will be instances where we will only have one L1. In those cases, can stacking the B1s over the B2 help in any way

Stack the B1s beside the B2. Don't put the B1s on top of the B2. They will walk off.

...either to accentuate the bass or make the system louder?

Yes, you will get more bass.

I assume a Packlite would be needed in that case? 

Yes - but you can find out what it will sound like without investing any more money.  Use the second L1 power stand (without the Cylindrical Radiator®) to drive the B1s.  Set the B2 switch* to + (plus).

Approach A

First L1 Model II Power Stand 

  • Connect B2 to Bass Output
  • Connect Bass Line Out to second L1 Model II Power Stand Analog Input. Use a balanced cable


Second L1 Model II Power Stand 

  • Set Analog Input trim so you get a solid green light. If you see solid red, turn it down.
  • Connect B1s to Bass Output


Note: There will be a difference if you do it this way.

Approach B

First L1 Model II Power Stand 

  • Connect B1s to Bass Output
  • Connect Bass Line Out to second L1 Model II Power Stand Analog Input. Use a balanced cable


Second L1 Model II Power Stand 

  • Set Analog Input trim so you get a solid green light. If you see solid red, turn it down.
  • Connect B2 to Bass Output


Approach A gives you the B2 EQ for all Bass Modules and a little more volume.

Approach B gives you the B1 EQ for all Bass Modules and will probably not be as loud.

While this may be somewhat off topic, I have been wondering if for larger, high noise gigs, we should try a conventional PA (12" mains and sub) up front, and then use the L1(s) behind us for monitors, and to fill out the sound. What do you think?

Yes. This is how L1 users are adding F1 systems for larger gigs. (F1 Model 812 plus F1 Subwoofer).

It's nice to do things this way because you can keep the same settings for the L1 systems whether or not you use the F1s.

Thanks again for your help!

Anytime!

ST





* B2 Bass Level Switch

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LarryR
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Re: B1/B2 bass module and PackLite

Thanks for these options! I will give it a try. We do have situations where a second L1 tower can't be used because it would block a door or be right next to a table.

I am still not sure when a Packlite might be helpful and how it would be used. I see it mentioned mostly as being used with multiple B1s. Would it help get more headroom than one of the alternatives mentioned above?

ST - Pro
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Re: B1/B2 bass module and PackLite

Hi Larry,

I'm sorry, I should have been clearer.

Larry posted:

Thanks for these options! I will give it a try. We do have situations where a second L1 tower can't be used because it would block a door or be right next to a table.

I suggested using the second L1 Model II Power Stand without the Cylindrical Radiator® so you can get an idea of what an A1 Packlite will do for you.  You can use the A1 Packlite instead of the second L1 Model II Power Stand in the two approaches (A and B) I described above.


I am still not sure when a Packlite might be helpful and how it would be used. I see it mentioned mostly as being used with multiple B1s. Would it help get more headroom than one of the alternatives mentioned above?

The A1 Packlite will give you similar performance to the alternatives mentioned above.

All good?

ST