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Budget Speaker to get me going while I save for something decent


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  • Budget Speaker to get me going while I save for something decent

    OK, Demo is done, and I'm looking to sell my act to venues. So, they need to hear me, which puts me in the market for a 10 or 12 inch powered box. Funds are tight, and I"m going to have to buy on the cheap and upgrade later. Prices and availability here (Hobart, Tasmania) are not what they are in the USA and I only have 2 real choices at the moment:

    Alto TS112A - $350 Pros: Cheap, has a fan. Cons: Limited reviews available, haven't heard yet. Specs on paper are OK, but real life performance is what matters.

    EV ZLX12P - $600 Pros: It's EV, it should't be total crap. Cons: No fan and summer is coming. The horn is a bit directional

    Other options in this price bracket are Behringer, Mackie Thumps, and Samson, but I have decided against each of these options for one reason or another

    Application will be solo acoustic guitar/vocals in restaurants and bars of mostly less than 200 people. If I get a larger bar on a busy night I'll hire a pair of K12s or something, but I want to at least be covered for 95% of the gigs I am likely to get.

     I'm sure the EV ZLX is a better speaker than the Alto, but since I could almost get a pair of Altos for the price of one EV, I have to ask, is it really $250 better?? Anyone out there working with the Alto? Any ideas on what it can and can't handle?




  • #2

    Going sideways for a moment - you might consider used if you know what to look for, or are willing to ask about.

    I just saw two Yorkville E160P's for $400 CAN. I used these for my solo and small band stuff for a few years. Besides some normal speaker oddities they are fine boxes and get the job done.  I just heard a duo using these (one for FOH one for monitor) and they sounded better in the room, than the two other duos that use the Bose system. And NO I don't want to get into a Bose debate. Just saying that if you know what you are doing $400 can sound as good as thousands of dollars. Having said that, the E160P's retailed new for around $900 a piece.

    Example http://vancouver.en.craigslist.ca/rds/msg/4135592703.html


    • heath_eld
      heath_eld commented
      Editing a comment

      Used market is obviously difficult but worth a look. 

      The general advice is to stick with something that will form part of a larger system. The ZLX is without doubt the better of the 2 speakers you mention but "nearly twice the goodness"? Not really sure. Personally i use the EV ELX (got them for about A$800 each a few years ago) and i'm very happy.... BUT...


      If you can swing A$600 i'd save for a little longer and get an RCF310 (you'll get those for about $700 from factory sound in Melbourne I think). Infinitely better and will serve as a great monitor in a "better" rig. There's even been a bit of RCF going second hand on ebay in australia recently, so keep an eye out. 




  • #3

    I have two of the TS112A's and they are surprisingly good sounding.  I have not heard the ZLX's, but I would not assume that they are better than the Alto's.  Has anyone here had the chance to listen and compare the two side by side?


    Here's a review of the 15" version of the Alto:  http://forums.prosoundweb.com/index.php/topic,135512.0.html


    • madjack
      madjack commented
      Editing a comment
      I have a pair of the Altos you specified. I've not been terribly happy with their sound. For my taste, I actually prefer the Behringer B210Ds. I find the tone controls on them to be more effective for shaping the sound. I have three of them and have had no problems for the last ~6 months with them. They are slightly boomy if the bass control is up too high, but I like their sound better for vocals than the Altos. They are also considerably smaller and lighter. All three run cool, although I am not in a hot area like you. They are also very usable for monitors if looking for something to expand with. I haven't heard the ZLX, but I have compared the Behringer with Ev ZX1 passive cab; the ZX1 has tighter but less bottom end.

  • #4

    Here is a comparison to the ELX112P. http://forum.fractalaudio.com/amps-cabs/49889-alto-ts112a-vs-ev-elx112p.html

    The wheel is an extension of the foot


  • #5

    You mentioned hiring K12's for larger gigs, so I assume K's are available. If so, for solo acoustic gigs, I'd recommend considering the K10's. One of these will work for just about anything you described, and don't assume the low end is lacking because of the 10"...it's definitely fine for acoustic guitar.

    At any rate, regarding your current choices, can you audition them? if so, that's all you really need to do to decide whether the EV is $250 better or not.

    "If you don't know where you are going, you might wind up someplace else" - Yogi Berra, 1925-2015