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  • DJ System review and advice

    Hello friends,

     

    Just looking for advice on a plan that I have put together. My friend and I are looking at starting a DJ business  so this is what we have come up with thus far.

     

    Target budget is under $20k

     

    The breakdown at this point looks like this:

    Speaker System  $9000

    Lighting System $3600

    DJ Gear $3700

    Accessories and Misc (cases, cables, etc) $3600

     

    Speaker System we plan to get:

    QSC KW-153 x 2

    Danley TH118 x 2

    QSC PL340 x 1

    Electro-Voice DC-One x 1 (Behringer DCX2496 if we have to penny pinch)

     

    Lighting:

    Chauvet Freedom series

     

    DJ Gear:

    Numark NS7-FX

    Macbook Pro

     

    Of course there are lots of other details but I wont list everything here. These are just the highlights. As far as the KW153's I realize the Danleys are a big step up and such. We have looked at some RCF options (NX-M25A mk2) but they would push our budget up a bit. We havent ruled them out yet, just trying to see what we can do within the $20k.

     

    ANyway please let me know what you think. If we are completely offmark let me know. Call me noob or whatever I dont care, just looking for feedback (the good kind!)

     

    Thanks,

    Jared


  • #2
    I would stick with kw-118s and stick with the internal QSC processing and you will have a better matched, more convenient and likely just as good of better sounding system for less money. I would even suggest 2 of the kw-118's per side and the 153 on top all ground stacked vertically as just about ideal. Better than the Danley when considered as a complete big picture solution.

    Comment


    • Koopdaddy
      Koopdaddy commented
      Editing a comment

      agedhorse wrote:
      I would stick with kw-118s and stick with the internal QSC processing and you will have a better matched, more convenient and likely just as good of better sounding system for less money. I would even suggest 2 of the kw-118's per side and the 153 on top all ground stacked vertically as just about ideal. Better than the Danley when considered as a complete big picture solution.

      Interesting. We were looking at the Danley vs 4 of the KW181's and this is our thought process:

      1. Danley quality

      2. Two of the Danleys are physically less space then four of the QSCs

      3. Past experience with Danley

      4. Two danley's are roughly equivalent in output as four of the qsc (as told to me by dealers, friends, and other "users" of both systems). Not saying they can't be wrong, just the advice I have been given.

       

      So based on those factors we felt the Danleys were the better option. Perhaps those are minor  or mislead factors? Thanks for your input we will definitely take it into consideration.

       

      Jared


    • Miko Man
      Miko Man commented
      Editing a comment
      I recognize the attraction of "wireless" lighting, but I wouldn't personnally buy all battery-powered lighting fixtures. I assume that you will have power to the dj station and to your (self-powered) speakers, and I assume that there will be some sort of truss. Why spend the $ on batteries instead of better/more lights?

      As usual, AH beat me to the punch on mixing "active" and "passive" speaker systems.

      C.

  • #3

    I am a sound guy who also moonlights as a DJ, so let me see if I can help you.

     

    A few questions first:

    - How many people do you want to cover with your PA system?

    - How you gonna carry all this stuff?

    - What style of music do you plan to do?

    - What software are you planning on using?  That controller comes with Serato which is dandy.  I tend to use Traktor mostly.

    - Why do you think you need two power amps with your speaker choices?

     

    So, my comments:

    Speakers - your selections would be a goood option, especially the subs, but will be stupid heavy and large.  I have used 2 X KW153 over 2 X KW181 with great success for pop music DJ work indoors and out.  You will need help getting the KW153 on poles; they are quite heavy.  If you are doing EDM, make that 4 x KW181.  One of my most flexible rigs for mobile DJ is K12s over KW181s.  Light, loud, reliable.

    Lights - I love Chauvet LED stuff that is DMX capable.  Shop around.  Wireless DMX is handy.

    DJ Gear - Killer controller and good laptop.  A fast external hard drive is a must.  Have a backup laptop of some sort as well.

    The business - it is hard to make any serious $ in the DJ game unless you are in a large town and have some good connections.  I mostly DJ my own events and some local clubs, and, even then, more for fun and meeting members of the opposite sex than for $.

     

    Good luck and tell/show us what you get.

    <div class="signaturecontainer">Just call me Fader Ape.</div>

    Comment


    • Koopdaddy
      Koopdaddy commented
      Editing a comment

      dedmeet wrote:

      I am a sound guy who also moonlights as a DJ, so let me see if I can help you.

       

      A few questions first:

      - How many people do you want to cover with your PA system?

      - How you gonna carry all this stuff?

      - What style of music do you plan to do?

      - What software are you planning on using?  That controller comes with Serato which is dandy.  I tend to use Traktor mostly.

      - Why do you think you need two power amps with your speaker choices?

       

      So, my comments:

      Speakers - your selections would be a goood option, especially the subs, but will be stupid heavy and large.  I have used 2 X KW153 over 2 X KW181 with great success for pop music DJ work indoors and out.  You will need help getting the KW153 on poles; they are quite heavy.  If you are doing EDM, make that 4 x KW181.  One of my most flexible rigs for mobile DJ is K12s over KW181s.  Light, loud, reliable.

      Lights - I love Chauvet LED stuff that is DMX capable.  Shop around.  Wireless DMX is handy.

      DJ Gear - Killer controller and good laptop.  A fast external hard drive is a must.  Have a backup laptop of some sort as well.

      The business - it is hard to make any serious $ in the DJ game unless you are in a large town and have some good connections.  I mostly DJ my own events and some local clubs, and, even then, more for fun and meeting members of the opposite sex than for $.

       

      Good luck and tell/show us what you get.


      1. 200-300 is our goal right now.

      2. We have a trailer

      3. Mostly pop, some EDM

      4. My partner is the DJ. He has been doing DJ work already and just wants to grow the business. We also want to start doing live band gigs (which is where my experience comes in.) So I am not sure which software he is using at this time. 

      5. Not sure what you mean, I had only specced 1 amp for the two subs.

       

      As far as business perspective, we both have day jobs. My partner has been doing small time dj work and is wanting to take it to the next level. Since I was looking at starting a business myself we decided to join efforts. Our first goal is to upgrade the dj side of things and get that to a higher level of service and ultimately, more customers. We have decided that $20k is the initial investment between the two of us that we would like to start with and as business proves growth down the road, continue to grow as a company.

      Thanks for your insight.

       

      Jared

       


  • #4

    People judge far more with their eyes vs what they hear.   It's a sad reality.

     

    That said, with your healthy budget of ~$14k between sound+lighting, I'd look at adjusting your budget to more on the $6k side for sound...  and then $7-8k on lighting.... IE;

    Global Truss 10' "Goalie Post" Truss
    4 Chauvet Qspot360's
    2 Chauvet Eclipse Lasers
    4 to 6 basic wash fixtures
    (Freedom strips for uplighting if budget allows)
    and a basic LED drape for the front of your DJ table.

     

    Sound, on a 6k budget:
    (4) QSC KW181's
    (2) QSC KW153's
    EV DC-One or DBX Driverack 260

    Will be more than enough for a 500 person show.

    <div class="signaturecontainer"><b><font face="Tahoma">Boston Common Band - <a href="http://www.BostonCommonBand.com" target="_blank">Boston Wedding Bands</a></font></b><font face="Tahoma"><br><b><font color="DarkRed">Sound</font></b>: <font size="1">DB Tech DVA T4's with RCF TTS18a Subs | QSC Wideline GP218 Sub for Big Events | RCF TT08a &amp; RCF ART710a Monitors</font><br><b><font color="DarkRed">Rack</font></b>: <font size="1">A&amp;H QU16 | (2) Summit Audio TLA-50 Tube Compressors | QSC PLX3602 | Furman P2400AR Voltage Regulators</font><br><b><font color="DarkRed">Lighting</font></b>: <font size="1">(8) Blizzard HOTBOX's | (2) Blizzard Weather Systems | (2) Chauvet Eclipse RGB + ADJ Hypnotic RGB &amp; Royal 3D Lasers | (4) QSpot360 Moving Heads</font><br><b><a href="http://www.BostonCommonBand.com" target="_blank"><font size="1">Newport RI Wedding Bands</font></a></b></font><br><b><font color="DarkBlue">For Sale</font></b>: <font size="2"><a href="http://www.harmonycentral.com/t5/Live-Gear/FS-Rack-Gear-Tube-Compressors-and-Mackie-Quad-EQ/m-p/35983107#U35983107">Rack Gear : Tube Compressors (Live/Studio) and Mackie Quad EQ!</a></font></div>

    Comment


    • spottyaudio
      spottyaudio commented
      Editing a comment

      if you are intending to do rentals and dry hire with this, you will need a pair of cdjs and a mixer as there are still a good few djs like myself who do not use software to do the work for them.  cdj 1000 mk3 would be a very standard good option, but if you need to budget, look into the cdj 800mk2, make sure to get mk2 as mk1 does not play mp3 files, and sadly, lots of djs will walk in with mp3s.

       

      i like the danly products very much but i do have to agree that the qsc 181 subs would work just as well and give you a lot more flexibility, as well as simplicity.  i also think four of the kw subs will dig deeper for edm than the danly subs.


    • Koopdaddy
      Koopdaddy commented
      Editing a comment

      dcastar wrote:

      People judge far more with their eyes vs what they hear.   It's a sad reality.

       

      That said, with your healthy budget of ~$14k between sound+lighting, I'd look at adjusting your budget to more on the $6k side for sound...  and then $7-8k on lighting.... IE;

      Global Truss 10' "Goalie Post" Truss
      4 Chauvet Qspot360's
      2 Chauvet Eclipse Lasers
      4 to 6 basic wash fixtures
      (Freedom strips for uplighting if budget allows)
      and a basic LED drape for the front of your DJ table.

       

      Sound, on a 6k budget:
      (4) QSC KW181's
      (2) QSC KW153's
      EV DC-One or DBX Driverack 260

      Will be more than enough for a 500 person show.


      Question, why would you need a DSP for an all QSC setup? Dont they already have the dsp built in?

       

      Thanks for your suggestions. I agree about the value of good lighting. As mentioned in my previous post, I simply do not have much lighting experience. I know how DMX works but I know next to nothing about lighting theory, color balance, color mixing, scene programming, etc.

       

      Jared


  • #5
    @dedmet yes I was joking about the sonic thingymajigger.

    Both my partner and I have listened to the Prx (not the sub) and liked them but they did seen a bit more "ice pick" in the highs compared to the qsc.

    That bein said I will would like to do another round of listening before the actual purchase. We definitely Borg preferred the 835/135 models over the smaller models.

    We might end up going with a pair of the 135 and maybe the k122/k12 for smaller gigs. Haven't fully decided yet. Trying to get the best scenario for all the aspects of this.

    Jared

    Comment


    • #6
      Plus we have heard abit about hear and reliability issues with the Prx so a bit Leary to go that path.

      Comment


      • dcastar
        dcastar commented
        Editing a comment

        Seriously,  for what you're looking to do.   Just grab the QSC KWs and call it a day.   You'll be glad you did.

        KISS Method ;   Keep It Simple Stupid!!   

        :smiley-music012:


    • #7
      First gig on the new system tonight. We didn't dj it, but we provided the pa for 3 musical acts (digeridoo and gong player, female acoustic guitar an piano, and dj for an art auction event.

      They also had a "ribbon dancer" which we setup a remote k12 using a wireless transmitter.

      Overall evrything went well. Fun group to work with. Looks like we might get some repeat business with the venue owner .

      Comment


      • nchangin
        nchangin commented
        Editing a comment

        Koopdaddy wrote:
         using a wireless transmitter.


        Re wireless transmitter, I've been looking for one for quite some times that's non obtrusive (smaller) and a clean signal may I ask what model you used, cost, pros cons and distance you transmitted? Thanks!

         

         


    • #8
      We weren't contracted to provide any lighting but we brought them along just in case. Since no one brought any we asked I they wanted any. Ended up using the freedom strips and mini kintas

      Comment


      • #9
        My experience with the Danley tapped horn subs is that when doubled up they are a substantial improvement over doubled up 181's but it's because of the change in horn mouth area which does not occur with a single horn loaded sub. This greatly affects LF sensitivity and extension. 4 horn loaded subs would be a very good solution IMO.

        Understanding the whole equation regarding subs is really important.

        Comment


        • Gaffle
          Gaffle commented
          Editing a comment

          agedhorse wrote:
          My experience with the Danley tapped horn subs is that when doubled up they are a substantial improvement over doubled up 181's but it's because of the change in horn mouth area which does not occur with a single horn loaded sub. This greatly affects LF sensitivity and extension. 4 horn loaded subs would be a very good solution IMO.

          Understanding the whole equation regarding subs is really important.

          I think your scenario (doubled and quadrupled up) and increased low-frequency sensitivity applies to your traditional horn-loaded sub.  The tapped horn, from my understanding, does not gain LF response the wider the mouth area.  There are dB gains from clustering / additional boxes but not extra LF extension.  A single TH-118 or TH-115 performs just as well (respectively) as a pair; they don't sound bad solo from my experience.  One sub is all I need for certain size gigs.  When it's necessary for convenience, I just bring a pair of EV SBA750's for smaller functions.

           


      • #10
        The lf extension applies to all horn loaded subs, tapped horns do not violate this law of physics (acoustic transformer load matching).

        There are 2 different mechanisms at work with horn loading. One is different than with front loaded subs but both types gain lf extension with the addition of cabinets.

        Comment

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