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Keyboard Amp vs Monitor vs mini PA system
Old 6th February 2013
  #31
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GZsound's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
I have no idea how the Behringer unit sounds. I stopped buying Behringer products a long time ago.

However, as has been said, any small powered monitor is going to be light on bass. Normally in monitors, that's a good thing.
Old 6th February 2013 | Show parent
  #32
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The B was quite a bit less expensive to buy than the Mackie SRM150 at the time.

Been trying to lighten up and so I recently drilled the right side of the keyboard stand to accept a mic holder. The B will mount on the left side of the keyboard. That will do away with two floor mic stands.
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Old 7th February 2013 | Show parent
  #33
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2manyrocks ➑️
The B was quite a bit less expensive to buy than the Mackie SRM150 at the time.

Been trying to lighten up and so I recently drilled the right side of the keyboard stand to accept a mic holder. The B will mount on the left side of the keyboard. That will do away with two floor mic stands.
I mounted everything to my keyboard stand. Vocal mic on a gooseneck that folded out of the way, sax mic on one leg and monitor holder on the other leg. No mic stands needed and no additional space needed.
Old 18th February 2013 | Show parent
  #34
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by dickiefunk ➑️
I'm in a similar situation and am looking for a cheapish pa speaker to be used as a keyboard amp and wedge monitor.

I have been leaning towards the Alto TS112a as these have had very favorable user reviews and look to be excellent value for money at Β£219 each in the UK.

Alto Professional - TRUESONIC Series > TS112A

I've not heard one personally yet but hope to do so within the next week or so. I'll be comparing it to a Roland KC350 keyboard combo.
Just figured I'd give an update : I bought and returned the Alto TS115a. Like you I saw many positive reviews and also listened to the comparison with JBL on youtube. I really wanted to like it at that price point. However, when I took it to practice and put my keyboard through it, it just sounded off. The midrange lacked definition and the high end was a little "honky". Bottom line, it just wasn't pleasant to listen to. Maybe its good for prerecorded music, as it seems to be most popular with DJs.

I got a chance to try a Behringer B115D, although I know Behringer is a dirty word. Our lead singer got one for vocal monitoring. It sounds surprisingly decent for $299, plus it was 15 percent off for presidents day. He got the 2 year pro coverage warranty at GC. So if it craps out (seems to be the main complaint with Behr), they will replace or repair it.

That is really tempting for me right now. I wasn't blown away or anything, but nothing jumped out at me as sounding bad (the faults were immediately clear, or rather not clear, with the Alto). I'd say the B115D is a little bass heavy, but it has definition. Also that could be cause it was the 15" rather than the 12"? Maybe I need a 12"? We have a bass player so I don't want to step on his toes, but I do want decent bass.

Right now I'm between that and getting a ELX15P or ELX12P "open box". The price is considerably higher, but I'm just wondering if they are a big enough upgrade in sound to warrant that jump.

If it sounds full, rich and clear...essentially if its a night and day difference between the Behrs and the EVs, then it is worth spending the money to me. But if the difference isn't huge, then I'd rather spend the least I can for something palatable (B115D), and then buy something even more expensive than those EVs later on down the line. If I spend more than 400 Im looking to get many years of use out of them before wanting to upgrade.

Anybody use the ELX series? Is it flexible enough for keyboard amp, personal monitor, and stage monitor roles? Or is the coverage too narrow?

Thanks guys!
Old 18th February 2013 | Show parent
  #35
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🎧 10 years
Interesting. I bought an Alto TS112a a few days ago. I did a quick shootout with my Roland KC350 and preferred the Alto!
Old 18th February 2013 | Show parent
  #36
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Could be the difference in 12" v. 15" has something to do with the differences in experience in the last two posts.

I googled the ELX series trying to see if there was anything useful to compare to the new ZLX line. Could be worth doing that for yourself as I don't think I should restate someone else's experience as my own.
Old 18th February 2013
  #37
Gear Head
 
🎧 10 years
What kind of sounds do you use? If it is mainly Rhodes and organ, plug your keyboard into a guitar amp, it's killer!! For strings and piano, I' m not sure tho…
Old 18th February 2013 | Show parent
  #38
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by friseruse ➑️
What kind of sounds do you use? If it is mainly Rhodes and organ, plug your keyboard into a guitar amp, it's killer!! For strings and piano, I' m not sure tho…
I play Acoustic Piano, EP (mostly Wurly but some Rhodes and some Clav), Organ. I'd be curious to hear that, at least for the EPs and Organ. I go out of an mbox-mini2 from a laptop for my sounds, can I just plug straight into the guitar amp? Would that be ok for the amp or would I need to put something in between?

Even so I think I'll still need to get a powered speaker for the piano sounds.
Old 19th February 2013 | Show parent
  #39
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2manyrocks ➑️
Could be the difference in 12" v. 15" has something to do with the differences in experience in the last two posts.

I googled the ELX series trying to see if there was anything useful to compare to the new ZLX line. Could be worth doing that for yourself as I don't think I should restate someone else's experience as my own.
I've done some of that myself, but as the ZLX line isn't out yet there are only the manufacturers specs to go on. I did see a lot of positive reviews and experiences using the ELX for keyboards, especially on the nord forum.

I found a store demo of the ELX112P at $409. Pulled the trigger on it a few minutes ago! Got it for $389!

I'll report back when it arrives and I try it out for myself!
Old 21st February 2013
  #40
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🎧 5 years
You made the right move. I have been using the same ev for 2yrs and it works great. Replaced an EON G2 with it. Only downside is very fragile paint and the G2 had 3inputs. Elx is Much more accurate sound for piano etc
Old 21st February 2013
  #41
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🎧 10 years
ZLX should be available some time in April. $399 for a 12" lightweight system -- if that sounds good, it will be a really killer keyboard amp.
Old 26th February 2013 | Show parent
  #42
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🎧 5 years
I wouldnt go any less than ELX. I have pushed it hard at times with Marshal stacks

Quote:
Originally Posted by ksandvik ➑️
ZLX should be available some time in April. $399 for a 12" lightweight system -- if that sounds good, it will be a really killer keyboard amp.
Old 26th February 2013 | Show parent
  #43
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by tINY ➑️

Those bigger Roland KC amps are nice. Sound good for keys and the stereo mix set you get with two units is nice for backline balancing.



-tINY

My keyboard player had a couple different Roland keyboard amps over the years. To me, they didn't sound very good. Originally, a KC-150, which was mostly useless if playing with a band of any real volume. And then a 550, which was OK at moderate volumes but still horrible headroom... seemed to break up quite easily when pushed at all. Perhaps the 880 is a more capable animal, but there are certainly far better options for the $$$.

I finally convinced him to try a powered monitor. After much research, we chose a JBL EON 515XT when they first came out. The difference between that and the Roland stuff wasn't even funny... leagues beyond in pretty much every way (except # of inputs... he picked up a Tascam LM8-ST to handle input of multiple keyboards)... and half the weight.

I was amazed at how well the XT holds up... even on synth patches with heavy low end at a decent volume. Very, very impressive. Excellent clarity and balance for the form factor, IMO. I was never much of JBL fan, but they definitely did something right with those.
---
c
Old 26th February 2013
  #44
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🎧 15 years

You are right, at over 100dB (103dB in stereo), the Rolands probably are out of their league.

The speaker you mention outpaces the mains that the OP mentioned.

Get your hearing checked - extended exposure to loud stages like that takes it's toll quickly.



-tINY

Old 26th February 2013
  #45
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🎧 10 years
I just picked up the QSC K12. I wanted to buy something cheaper, but....I demoed some cheaper speakers (Alto) up against the K12 in the store. That was all it took. The K12 blew the alto away. Not even in the same league.
Old 27th February 2013 | Show parent
  #46
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🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by tINY ➑️
Get your hearing checked - extended exposure to loud stages like that takes it's toll quickly.

-tINY

I use in-ears at mild volumes, or musicians ear plugs otherwise ;-)

Now, the rest of the band, (other than the drummer), not too concerned with avoiding high SPL's. I guess you could say my advice/warnings fall on deaf ears.
---
c
Old 27th February 2013
  #47
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🎧 5 years
Got the ELX and tried it out. Love how it sounds! Its the best I've heard my samples/vst instruments. I finally felt like I was hearing in rehearsal the tone that I hear at home through my headphones.

The only issue I had was that the grill seemed to vibrate audibly at certain lower frequencies when played loud. At least that is what it seemed like to me. When I pressed on the grill (not too hard of course) the vibrating "zzz" sound decreased. I'd never hear it in the band mix, and its fairly subtle alone as well, but I'd still like to solve it.

Any ideas? Do you think its a defect? Or maybe I should just try and tighten the screws a bit? I have rehearsal tomorrow maybe I'll take the grill off and see if it still happens so I know for sure what the cause is.

Despite that little issue, I'm happy I went with the ELX and not something cheaper like the Behringer or the Alto.
Old 27th February 2013
  #48
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🎧 15 years

You'll need to brace the grill or replace it with speaker cloth of some kind to tame the buzzzzz...z....zz..




-tINY

Old 27th February 2013
  #49
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The buzz might be the reason it was a store demo. I suspect some of the on line demos are customer returns. So you want to run down the cause of the problem before any return period expires.
Old 28th February 2013 | Show parent
  #50
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tommy-boy ➑️
KB300s are great amps. Good sound and they are rugged. I still have mine.
Ditto that.
I have a KB 300 and a KB/A 300. Good God they are heavy to lug, but it's always worth it. They have a line-out and pre-amp out in the rear (usually use the pre-amp). Those 2 amps are hated by most sound men, heck the whole freakin' band wants to plug in and blast away. Nice stereo too....but seriously though, as a monitor, they work well (KB300 can remove rear wheels), but a lot of sound mixers really really don't like to see me coming in with those things, so one is it most of the time, because they just want to take over. Yeah, I'm one of those types.
Old 28th February 2013 | Show parent
  #51
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Any reason to prefer the KB versus the KB/A? Or really the same? I see them around from time to time-just not sure if one is mo betta...
Old 28th February 2013
  #52
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🎧 5 years
Well, I took the BW out of the KB300 and put it into the KB/A 300...(had a Scorpion) even the BW name tag screwed off to transfer over. The KB/A is slightly shorter, but a wider cabinet overall and has sliders for the equalizers. It's basically a KB300 updated for the early 90's. One other thing I noticed (KB/A) was that the horn tweeter is much improved and shifted to the corner, like a Roland KC series...but huge) and it had insulation with a port in the back. (Of course I've put insulation into the older KB300.) Power is the exact same specs (if I recall correctly) and the weight is about the same. KB/A just looks more current because it is. But I swear, that old KB300 even with a heart transplant to the Scorpion, still is the king. The "A" stand for acoustic, and is overall "shinier"...that's it.
Finally, maintenance is fairly easy. Just rip it apart and clean. Most components are "plug and play", but the only trouble I have ever had is a common "short", which I have fixed by taking it apart and pulling out the chassis and tightening and cleaning the 1/4" plugs (from the back of the plug). It's really pretty easy if you've never done it.
I paid $300.00 ea for both of them, one off of Craigslist and the other at my local music shop. They do show up from time to time, and locally, if folks are selling them, they either don't know what they have, or are downsizing and don't care because I'm never getting rid of mine, that's for sure.
Old 28th February 2013 | Show parent
  #53
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2manyrocks ➑️
The buzz might be the reason it was a store demo. I suspect some of the on line demos are customer returns. So you want to run down the cause of the problem before any return period expires.

I was able to troubleshoot it today and it seems that it is defective. I took off the grill (its supposed to be removable so it won't void any warranties or anything) and the buzz continued. I pressed down a bit between the woofer and the tweeter (after trying other places) and the buzz disappeared. Maybe the wood has a slight crack or something, I don't know. I am well within the return period, so I am definitely going to return. Hopefully I'll just get a replacement since it was defective on arrival, but I don't know how they handle store demo returns.

I really hope I can get it resolved quickly. I don't want to go back to sharing a monitor and struggling to hear myself...
Old 1st March 2013
  #54
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1 Review written
🎧 15 years

If they won't take it back - just drill a hole where the buzz is and fill it with a small nut/bolt with fender washers on eash side.

It may be from loose hardware on the woofer or tweeter too. Tighten them down...



-tINY

Old 1st March 2013
  #55
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Thanks JestaJX10. I appreciate your taking time to explain the differences to me.
Old 1st March 2013 | Show parent
  #56
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🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by tINY ➑️

If they won't take it back - just drill a hole where the buzz is and fill it with a small nut/bolt with fender washers on eash side.

It may be from loose hardware on the woofer or tweeter too. Tighten them down...



-tINY

Thanks for the tip! Fortunately they (Proaudiostar) are taking it back and sending me a replacement. Prepaid UPS slip for the return shipping too.
Old 1st March 2013
  #57
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🎧 5 years
Also as a side note/question:

I am going out of my Mbox through a Passive DI box and then directly into the ELX which then gets fed to the mixer through a "Link out." Do I need that DI box? I don't notice any hum without it.
Old 5th March 2013
  #58
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🎧 5 years
I use two of the older gray 10" Eons in stereo and they work great. They are plenty loud and the piano sounds balanced through the mid range. I also have a pair of the Eon g2 15's but the 10's sound better.
Old 5th March 2013
  #59
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🎧 10 years
Love my Roland kc 550 but its a heavy ****er

Sent from my HTC6435LVW
Old 21st April 2013
  #60
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🎧 5 years
This has been a fascinating thread. I'm in the market for a new keyboard amp too and am somewhat confused by all the options. I have been gigging with my Technics P50 keyboard for about 8 years and originally bought a Behringer KEYBOARD AMP/PA SYSTEM KX1200 because it was cheap, had plenty of power and a good mellow, clear and undistorted sound. But the standard of manufacture was terrible and many of the controls became noisy when adjusting on the fly, the fan packed its bags and eventually the unit developed a loud buzz before giving up the ghost altogether. An engineering friend then had it in pieces and was disgusted at the shoddy workmanship that went in to the Behringer.

For health reasons I did not want to have another heavy combo so bought a Mackie SRM 150; an amazing machine - very, very light and tiny and, when new, sounded better than the big Behringer. But it was not to last. As much as I love the thing for its usefulness, the sound it makes has deteriorated massively - all sorts of buzzes and unwanted noises have developed and yesterday it gave a loud 'pop' and stopped working.

So I'm in a mind to replace the Mackie with a bigger unit or a small P.A. system. But I really don't want the problem of placing two speakers (though I'd like stereo) and messing with speaker cables and a separate amp or a separate powered mixer. I don't want to turn up at a blues jam and have to spend a long time messing about with a complicated or ostentatious set-up.

So I'm hoping to find a good combo - better than (or stronger than) either of the two I've owned. I can't afford the wonderful Motion Sound KBR3D Keyboard Amplifier (they cost Β£1,800 in the UK ( Motion Sound KBR3D Keyboard Amplifier at zZounds ) but quite fancy the Alto Kick12 ( Alto Professional - KICK Series > KICK12 ) But, Alto products are so keenly priced I'm worried they are made as badly as the Behringer. So, does anyone have any views or experience concerning Alto products in general or the Kick12 or Kick15 in particular?

best wishes all.
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