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Author Topic: What Amp Would You Use?  (Read 1616 times)
Danny K
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« on: February 10, 2013, 01:31:04 PM »

What amp would you use?
   If you practice with a choir, a little more than an hour, 1 day a week and
play in the Sanctuary, 2 services, for a total of 45 minutes, 1 day of the month
   With 2 unplugged rhythm guitars (that have Mahogany B&S), about 15 singers.

And you are playing intros, melodies, finger pick the rhythm and play the conclusion.
With a guitar with Rosewood back & sides.




What amp would you use?   (battery powered or not)
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« Reply #1 on: February 10, 2013, 02:45:23 PM »

How big is the sanctuary?

How far away is the person farthest from you who must be able to hear you?

Do you have a pickup in your guitar?
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ducktrapper
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« Reply #2 on: February 10, 2013, 03:46:41 PM »

I would look into a small PA, the new Fender Passport for instance. Much better than an "acoustic amp" in my opinion. 
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Barefoot Rob
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« Reply #3 on: February 10, 2013, 03:51:51 PM »

Ducks got it,a small portable would cover you out. +1
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L07 Shooting Star
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« Reply #4 on: February 10, 2013, 05:51:35 PM »

Agree with the portable PA option over an amp.  Another brand to investigate is Yorkville Sound.  Their Micromix series powered mixer/amps are very nice and reasonably priced.  They have a selection of passive speakers, the YX series, that sound good and are not too expensive.  I recently rented the smallest of the Micromix mixers (2 X 90 watts) and paired it with 2 YX10 (10 inch - 150 W) speakers for an office party and it sounded very good.  There were two of us with acoustic guitars with pickups in them, and we each had a mic for vocals.  The room was at least 5000 sq. feet and we only needed to crank the volume about half-way up.  For a worship situation, I would think you would want something with a bit more power and maybe 12" or 15" speakers.
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« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2013, 02:20:32 AM »

Danny--My recommendation for the venue you describe would be a Roland AC33.  It is small, light, AC/DC powered, and great tone with more than ample volume for what you describe.  Additionally it has two separate channels, one of which also has an XLR connection.  I own one and it always amazes people at what such a small package can do.  Check it out.
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« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2013, 03:31:13 AM »

Danny,

Are there any other instruments being played? Piano? Drums (acoustic or electronic)? Bass?

I've played in the worship band at 3-4 different churches and not one altar/platform area had an arrangement that worked well for amplified guitar ... of course, the grand piano and acoustic drum kit could be heard all over, as could the choir, stringed instruments, winds - but the guitar was always swallowed up by the other instruments and voices ... whether it was the layout - the choir at the back of the platform or to the sides almost always had the guitar out in front of them - or that the piano and drums are more omnidirectional compared to the guitar/amp which is more directional.

My amp was invariably pointed at the congregation, in front of the choir, so they really couldn't hear it and often I could not either. So I resorted to a tilt-back amp stand which helped some - but still I heard my amp/guitar moreso over the house PA system than through my own amp. Typically, the sound guy took a line/preamp out of the back of my amp to the house system - often through a line transformer (Shure A95UF type HI to LO) via XLR cable to the house board. Problem with that was, my amp line/preamp out was before the FX section so it was a dry signal over the house system. As I recall, it was a Crate CA60D amp ... no longer have it.

I eventually bought a Carvin Stagemate system, which is a pole mount self-contained battery-backed system with extension speaker. It sounds pretty well but is a pain to set up and rather long-of-tooth these days. At the time I bought it, Bose had not yet come out with their L1 System.

I don't gig any more and plan to unload my Stagemate system eventually, but if ever I were to start gigging again, I'd most likely go with the Bose L1 Compact system, for it's portability, sound dispersion and unobtrusive appearance. I like that it gets the speakers up off the ground which would make my guitar sound more omnidiretional.

One thing that occurs to me about amplifying acoustic guitars in a sanctuary, is what makes it necessary has more to do with the arrangement of the stage and volume of the other instruments - it's difficult to compete with a grand piano, drums, etc ... yet I've seen several orchestral performances featuring my old classical guitar teacher, out front, and he could be heard without difficulty in front of a full orchestra. In the same way my churches choir director rearranged the choir seating, putting the basses in the front, the tenors in the next, the altos and sopranos in back - because the higher voices are more easily heard - I wonder if some simple rearrangement of the band might make your guitar playing more easily heard?

I always had a dispute with my church about equipment - they really should provide the sound amplification ... so many of the W&P band members burned out over time for not only having to buy their own amps, but having to lug them in and out of the sanctuary several times a week (practice and service). In my old church, the only reason they had to be torn down and put away, is because the contemporary service preceded the traditional service where some of the attendees were upset by the presence of a guitar on stage.

Ideally, IF  your guitar had a pickup, you don't need an amp, just a preamp/impedance matching box (Baggs Para DI type) to plug your guitar into and go to the house PA system. Hopefully, the sound guy knows something about EQ and the board has some reverb to enhance your sound.

Just my $1.25 worth ... hope that's OK ...
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Danny K
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« Reply #7 on: February 11, 2013, 06:47:18 AM »

    The choir I am in has 2 unplugged rhythm guitars (that have Mahogany Back & Sides), about 15 singers, and my LV-03RE.   We play both services, one Sunday of the month.  And sometime we play at other places.
                         (my guess is the sanctuary is about 36 feet Wide x 70 feet long x 32 feet high)

   The Acoustics of our Sanctuary building are fantastic!  The unplugged rhythm guitars are well heard.  I am playing a rosewood guitar, so it needs a little amplification to have the volume wanted (only a pinch louder than the rhythm).

   When I started in this choir I also played a guitar with mahogany back & sides.  In 2004 I got a Larrivee LV-03RE.   When I first tried it with the choir, my sound was so buried, I could barely hear it.  So I got a Pignose 7-100, which was better than nothing, I used it for a couple years but…  I tried the other Pignose amps and not care for them.  Then I got a Roland Mobile, it sounded much better and I used it for more than a year and a half.  The power switch died and the seller repaired it for me.  That repair lasted about 9 months.   Then I was back to using the Pignose until I decided which amp to get.   Well the Pignose worked for one week and died at last weeks practice.

So far the amps I am considering are the Roland Mobile AC, the Roland AC-33 and I keep trying to find other good possible amps.

I hang/latch the amp to a camera stand.  How would be a good way to setup the AC-33, I’m not sure yet.

The negative of the Mobile AC, I’ve been told, is there is no midrange (the sound is not rich or detailed).
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Danny K
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« Reply #8 on: February 12, 2013, 05:34:24 AM »

I finally got a chance to check out the Fender Passport Mini.
It looks like it should be a consideration along with the Roland Mobile AC and the Roland AC-33.

I see that it is also battery powered.

I also noticed this has Reverb,    Does it have Chorus?

It cost about the same as the Roland Mobile AC and half the cost of the Roland AC-33.

Looks like it could be hung on my camera stand like the Mobile was.


If you could tell me more about this PA, please do.

Thanks, Dan
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carruth
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« Reply #9 on: February 12, 2013, 08:05:17 PM »

CJ is making some very good points. I have a little AER amp that I can highly recommend. Check them out.
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CJ
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« Reply #10 on: February 13, 2013, 01:27:15 AM »

Hi Danny,

You've mentioned getting your amp up off the floor on a camera tripod a couple of times.

So on a hunch I googled "pole insert for speaker cabinet" and came up with this device:

http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/SSA1375

Assuming there's no interference with the speaker, AND, there's no reverb tank in the way, you could conceivably drill out the bottom of any amp and install a pole adapter, then use a standard speaker tripod stand like this:

http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/SpeakerStd/

Or forget all that and just get a kick-back stand like this:

http://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/AmpStd/

Either solution would be more secure / strong for holding up an amp than a camera tripod.

It's not clear whether you are migrating to smaller amps for portability, the strength / limitations of your camera tripod stand, or for budget. My thinking is IF you'd be willing to install your own speaker pole adapter or use an amp stand, it potentially gives you more choices.

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