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View Full Version : Looking for Powered Speaker/Monitors for home use & small parties...



Finnish_Fox
04-19-2012, 05:45 PM
I need some more sound but not terribly familiar with the which brands are good, etc. Looking for a 12"-15" pair of powered monitors/speakers, trying to find some for $500-600 for the pair. (Be nice to have more powerful monitors and would like to provide sound for a backyard.)

JBL Eons
Mackie Thumps ($300 for the 15" new)
RCF 312a - (cannot find used right now)
Yamaha

Anything else I should be considering? Any opinions on these?

BillESC
04-19-2012, 06:14 PM
Forget the Thumps as they'll run out of gas quickly.

With your budget, American Audio's new Sense12's are $ 500.00 a pair and the Sense15's are $ 600.00 a pair.

Al Poulin
04-19-2012, 07:38 PM
Forget the Thumps as they'll run out of gas quickly.

With your budget, American Audio's new Sense12's are $ 500.00 a pair and the Sense15's are $ 600.00 a pair.


Bill, are you actually recommending American Audio speakers? :eek:

Al

SummitAudioDJ
04-19-2012, 08:03 PM
If you want great quality sound just buy a single RCF 312A. It will easlily handle your backyard. If you don't need anything super loud, can sacrafice sound quality and want a pair you can try the M-Audio GSR-12's for $300/pair. Hell you could get 4 of them within your budget.

Here is a link to a review thread of both the GSR 12's and GSR 10's. http://www.djforums.com/forums/showthread.php?4888-M-Audio-GSR-10-Review Read through the thread for links on where to buy. Ebay has the best deal at $300 shipped or $350 shipped with stands and cables.

SummitAudioDJ
04-19-2012, 08:07 PM
Forget the Thumps as they'll run out of gas quickly.

With your budget, American Audio's new Sense12's are $ 500.00 a pair and the Sense15's are $ 600.00 a pair.


Aren't the sense series passive?

Al Poulin
04-19-2012, 08:53 PM
Aren't the sense series passive?

They do look all passive. Doesn't make much SENSE. :D

Al Poulin
04-19-2012, 08:56 PM
Mackie Thump 15s or Samson Auro D415s would be fine for a back yard and actually sound very good while providing nice bottom end as well. These are somewhat limited output wise, but for back yards and even smaller wedding type gigs, either will do just fine.


Al

wave180
04-19-2012, 10:27 PM
You might want to check the Alto Truesonic series too.

bumpyjonas
04-19-2012, 10:44 PM
Save up to increase your budget and go with the RCF 's best price point, and overall sound quality.

Finnish_Fox
04-19-2012, 11:28 PM
Forget the Thumps as they'll run out of gas quickly.

With your budget, American Audio's new Sense12's are $ 500.00 a pair and the Sense15's are $ 600.00 a pair.

Willing to go used... just need to know what to look for.

Finnish_Fox
04-19-2012, 11:31 PM
Currently, home monitoring and backyard parties. Perhaps some small bar, lounges in the future. Sounds like the RCFs are what I'm looking for.

No one likes the JBL Eons?

Rody Dubbelman
04-20-2012, 07:22 AM
I've used the Eon 515's several times, was my first soundsystem. I really liked using them, lightweight and impressive soundpressure. The bass was also quite strong on the 515's.
Later on I sold the 515's and bought the QSC KW153. Great sound, but very very heavy. Now I'm using the QSC K10 with the K-sub. Small, portable soundsystem, with a small footprint. The sound of the K10 is really great. For small party's, up to 50/60 people, I use the K10 stand-alone.

BillESC
04-20-2012, 10:22 AM
My mistake, the Sense series is passive.

ampnation
04-20-2012, 05:32 PM
If size, weight and sound quality are most important, I would get a single rcf art312a and a small mixer with 2 line/Mic inputs + a stereo rca input. Peavey PV series or soundcraft notepad series for the mixer. The mixer will sum to mono safely.

Or if substantial bass trumps size, weight and sound quality, consider a used B52 Matrix 1000 v2.

Also consider whether you will be wanting to upgrade. The RCF would be the clear choice to expand upon.

Finnish_Fox
04-20-2012, 06:56 PM
If size, weight and sound quality are most important, I would get a single rcf art312a and a small mixer with 2 line/Mic inputs + a stereo rca input. Peavey PV series or soundcraft notepad series for the mixer. The mixer will sum to mono safely.

Cheers... but at that point, I'd rather just save for 2.


Or if substantial bass trumps size, weight and sound quality, consider a used B52 Matrix 1000 v2.

Fairly large, isn' it?


Also consider whether you will be wanting to upgrade. The RCF would be the clear choice to expand upon.

This is a big consideration.

Finnish_Fox
04-20-2012, 07:01 PM
http://losangeles.craigslist.org/sgv/msg/2952885384.html

What about these?

Finnish_Fox
04-20-2012, 07:15 PM
Or these?

http://losangeles.craigslist.org/sgv/msg/2962642213.html

Finnish_Fox
04-20-2012, 07:34 PM
Are the RCFs XLR only? Says the inputs are xlr/jack - is jack = line?

A review on amazon mentioned the 315 lacks on.

Oh, any reason the 312 is preferred over the 315?

SummitAudioDJ
04-20-2012, 08:33 PM
Are the RCFs XLR only? Says the inputs are xlr/jack - is jack = line?

A review on amazon mentioned the 315 lacks on.

Oh, any reason the 312 is preferred over the 315?


The 315a lacks bass response since it uses the same size box as the 312A and the woofer doesn't have enough room to breathe properly. Ultimately I would buy one RCF 312A for now and buy a second if you feel the need later. They are incredibly loud and great sounding speakers for the price.

ampnation
04-20-2012, 09:51 PM
http://losangeles.craigslist.org/sgv/msg/2952885384.html

What about these?

S115V or S115IV (basically same speaker, one has speakon, the other doesn't.) Are heavy, fairly muddy, carpeted passive speakers - need to add an amp and preferably a DSP unit to those - but they're pretty sturdy and one of the best known speakers out there. Truthfully, I think the design is really starting to show its age and the price differential when buying new between these and a pair of ART312A's is so small esp. after adding an amp, it becomes a no brainer for those buying new. The only reason resale on them hasn't dropped more right now is that there aren't a ton of the better value powered speakers on the used market yet.


Or these?

http://losangeles.craigslist.org/sgv/msg/2962642213.html

Excellent performers when they're not broken down. Mackie has had some significant quality problems on the HD line. I wouldn't buy without a comprehensive aftermarket warranty like GC's pro coverage.


Are the RCFs XLR only? Says the inputs are xlr/jack - is jack = line?

A review on amazon mentioned the 315 lacks on.

Oh, any reason the 312 is preferred over the 315?

Yes @ XLR only. Someone already covered why the 315 isn't preferred. A rare RCF blunder IMO.

darkksyde
04-21-2012, 11:00 AM
I'd recommend spending a bit more and buying something that would last you a lot longer.

I just recently bought 2 JBL PRX612M's and loving them so far. So much improvement from my previously owned Audioline speakers.

Finnish_Fox
04-23-2012, 07:34 PM
Yes @ XLR only. Someone already covered why the 315 isn't preferred. A rare RCF blunder IMO.

The photo of the back makes its look like there is a 1/4" input or output above the XLRs... what is that?

Finnish_Fox
04-23-2012, 07:37 PM
Any body recommend/not recommend Alto? Someone sent me this:

http://ventura.craigslist.org/msg/2935379843.html

ampnation
04-23-2012, 08:05 PM
The photo of the back makes its look like there is a 1/4" input or output above the XLRs... what is that?

I may have been mistaken. All I see are photos with the 1/4" jack you mention and the spec sheet does mention unbalanced input plus saying plug/XLR on input. It doesn't have RCA's though and single input only. You wouldn't use both the 1/4" and the XLR like the K series which have dual combo 1/4"/XLR jacks plus stereo RCA jacks. (the RCA here can actually be used in addition to the combo jacks but mixes with the B channel without its own level control.) I guess the photos I had looked at before on the ART3 series were dark and the 1/4" jack didn't show up so well.

Also, it is worth noting that the ART3 series has more than one iteration. The current being the MKIII. Previous versions before the price drop had more robust I/O sections on them. When buying used you might run into these others.


Any body recommend/not recommend Alto? Someone sent me this:

http://ventura.craigslist.org/msg/2935379843.html

I haven't seen anyone recommend the Alto whose opinion I respect and I've seen at least one dis them. They might be okay for certain applications but not at their current pricing -- not really sure. I've only seen them (@GC) not heard them.

Finnish_Fox
04-23-2012, 08:11 PM
I may have been mistaken. All I see are photos with the 1/4" jack you mention and the spec sheet does mention unbalanced input plus saying plug/XLR on input. It doesn't have RCA's though and single input only. You wouldn't use both the 1/4" and the XLR like the K series which have dual combo 1/4"/XLR jacks plus stereo RCA jacks. (the RCA here can actually be used in addition to the combo jacks but mixes with the B channel without its own level control.) I guess the photos I had looked at before on the ART3 series were dark and the 1/4" jack didn't show up so well.

What do you mean by K-series?


Also, it is worth noting that the ART3 series has more than one iteration. The current being the MKIII. Previous versions before the price drop had more robust I/O sections on them. When buying used you might run into these others.

Cheers... not seeing any used at the moment.


I haven't seen anyone recommend the Alto whose opinion I respect and I've seen at least one dis them. They might be okay for certain applications but not at their current pricing -- not really sure. I've only seen them (@GC) not heard them.

Cheers again - they look decent spec wise but you don't listen to a piece of paper. Leaning toward the 312s.

ampnation
04-23-2012, 08:20 PM
What do you mean by K-series?



The QSC K8, K10 and K12 which all have identical mixer sections which they share with the KW series tops.

Finnish_Fox
04-23-2012, 09:18 PM
Are QSC's nicer than RCFs?

akela
04-23-2012, 09:30 PM
That's arbitrary. After hearing both, I happen to have a preference for the RCFs, but that is just me.
Are QSC's nicer than RCFs?

Al Poulin
04-23-2012, 09:57 PM
Are QSC's nicer than RCFs?

RCF makes the better sounding speaker IMO (the high frequency drivers are truly excellent), but QSC has a better mixer section and warranty. The difference is not night and day though, both RCF Art and QSC K speakers sound very good, offer plenty of output and to be honest most people would be happy with either... The RCF 312A was simply a better value for a long time but now the prices seem to be going back up.

As for the 1/4'' input, the 1st generation 3 series did have both XLR and 1/4'' as well as different EQ settings and remote capability. When generation 2 came out, these features were removed and replaced with a simple XLR in and out. Now the MKIII version has a completely different amplifier module (digital and 400 watts) and now you have a choice of flat or music setting and it looks like some components that were neodymium, have been switched back to ferrite due to the rising cost of neo. This does increase weight a little BUT the new lighter digital amps kind of balance that out.

Al

Finnish_Fox
04-23-2012, 10:04 PM
That's arbitrary. After hearing both, I happen to have a preference for the RCFs, but that is just me.

I guess I should've asked what the reputation is - I imagine both are nice speakers? The QSCs are a bit much.

Finnish_Fox
04-23-2012, 10:05 PM
RCF makes the better sounding speaker IMO (the high frequency drivers are truly excellent), but QSC has a better mixer section and warranty. The difference is not night and day though, both RCF Art and QSC K speakers sound very good, offer plenty of output and to be honest most people would be happy with either... The RCF 312A was simply a better value for a long time but now the prices seem to be going back up.

As for the 1/4'' input, the 1st generation 3 series did have both XLR and 1/4'' as well as different EQ settings and remote capability. When generation 2 came out, these features were removed and replaced with a simple XLR in and out. Now the MKIII version has a completely different amplifier module (digital and 400 watts) and now you have a choice of flat or music setting and it looks like some components that were neodymium, have been switched back to ferrite due to the rising cost of neo. This does increase weight a little BUT the new lighter digital amps kind of balance that out.

Al

Seriously considering the 312s...

Looks like these might not be MKIIIs? http://www.amazon.com/RCF-312a-Active-2-Way-Speaker/dp/B005MYF2FW

Actually, having a hard time finding the 400w one.

Al Poulin
04-23-2012, 10:30 PM
Seriously considering the 312s...

Looks like these might not be MKIIIs? http://www.amazon.com/RCF-312a-Active-2-Way-Speaker/dp/B005MYF2FW

Actually, having a hard time finding the 400w one.

Don't worry about finding the 400 watt ones. I'd rather have the 350 watt ones that use the more traditional amplifiers. RCF has had some problems with the Digipro amps...

Al

audiopyle
04-23-2012, 11:26 PM
AFAIK the first shipment of MarkIII ART3 series will arrive in the US in mid-May. They will have Digipro amp modules with both XLR & 1/4" input jacks. The cabinets will be black instead of grey. If anyone wants to preorder some email or message me.

Finnish_Fox
04-23-2012, 11:55 PM
Don't worry about finding the 400 watt ones. I'd rather have the 350 watt ones that use the more traditional amplifiers. RCF has had some problems with the Digipro amps...

Al

So does the MKII or whatever have the line input?

EDIT - the MKIIs are XLR only. The MK3's appear to have the line. Sort of a pain, but not a deal breaker.

akela
04-24-2012, 01:21 AM
I guess I should've asked what the reputation is - I imagine both are nice speakers? The QSCs are a bit much.

Yeah. Both are great speakers but I just happen to have a preference for the RCFs. The reason is that bang-for-buck, the RCFs offer a bit more. And in my opinion, sound more natural.

ampnation
04-24-2012, 02:06 AM
If I were doing DJ work only and not live sound too, and I were buying right now, I'd probably go with the RCF over the K10's I already own, not because I don't like the K10 better, but because the price difference is too much to ignore.

DJJDGator
04-24-2012, 08:40 AM
what is the price going to be for the rcf mark III?

rsn62
04-24-2012, 03:33 PM
I have seen the k12's for $650 shipped so I dont see a huge price difference against the art 312a.

CQE DJs
04-24-2012, 04:52 PM
AFAIK the first shipment of MarkIII ART3 series will arrive in the US in mid-May. They will have Digipro amp modules with both XLR & 1/4" input jacks. The cabinets will be black instead of grey. If anyone wants to preorder some email or message me.

Mike - Just out of curiosity, if I decide to get another 312 (to add to the 3 I bought from you), would you be able to get me the same one I have MK2 and the full grill?

audiopyle
04-24-2012, 05:19 PM
Mike - Just out of curiosity, if I decide to get another 312 (to add to the 3 I bought from you), would you be able to get me the same one I have MK2 and the full grill?

I'm out of them and RCF USA is out of them. If you can find a new or used one somewhere I can get a grill for you.

ampnation
04-24-2012, 05:48 PM
I have seen the k12's for $650 shipped so I dont see a huge price difference against the art 312a.

At around $425 to $500, that's up to $450 and at least $250 difference for a pair. If you don't need what the K's have to offer, that can be significant enough. It could allow for an upgrade on another piece of equipment. In the long run, you're right though. When you consider how much use they get, and how the features could make a difference, that could easily pay for itself.

Another point. Not sure where I saw it, but I heard the price on K-series were going up, so even if the RCF's go up, I think there's still a differential and when you're running a business, a 20-25% price difference can be a determining factor if both products are capable to do the job asked of them.

Finnish_Fox
04-24-2012, 06:52 PM
I have seen the k12's for $650 shipped so I dont see a huge price difference against the art 312a.

Seeing $700+ minimum on a quick search. Can get the 312's for under $500 a piece on Amazon - $400 difference is a lot, IMO.

bostontech
04-25-2012, 03:00 PM
I have seen the k12's for $650 shipped so I dont see a huge price difference against the art 312a.

That's a great price. I haven't seen them that low unless it was open box.