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Norton666

Carvin TRX vs. JBL MRX???

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Been checking out the Carvin TRX stuff and reading all of the reviews I can on it. Does anyone on here have real world experience with the TRX and the JBL MRX stuff? Honestly, I will probably just be running a 2 way rig with subs, so the tops will be damn near full range. Is one series better than the other for this kind of setup? Sorry about all of the questions, but Im trying to do lots of homework before I dive in.

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I had a pair of Carvin TRX153 cabs for about two years, they are well built and have a decent low end to them but the horn I found pretty much unuseable. The horn in a Yamaha club series cab is 100% better sounding then the horn that Carvin is using in the TRX series cabs.

The TRX takes a LOT of EQ tweaking to get the cab to sound OK, if all you are using it for is for DJ purposes they are fine but for live vocal reproduction they just don't have it.

 

The JBL MRX series cabs sound better but I am not a fan of how there horn driver sounds in that series of cabs either.

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I love the MRX series, and the horn sounds fine to me, much smoother than lots of previous JBL products. A shorter throat throw has smoothed out some of the issues at 4-6k. Smoother than the Yam Clubs too, especially as you start to push them. The MRX are very light, nice pole mounts. I regularly put up 4 515s full range for many jobs.

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I had a pair of Carvin TRX153 cabs for about two years, they are well built and have a decent low end to them but the horn I found pretty much unuseable. The horn in a Yamaha club series cab is 100% better sounding then the horn that Carvin is using in the TRX series cabs.

.

 

Wow! really? That surprises me, but I've never heard the TRX153. I think of the Yamaha Club horn as pretty harsh, particulary when pushed.

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Wow! really? That surprises me, but I've never heard the TRX153. I think of the Yamaha Club horn as pretty harsh, particulary when pushed.

 

 

IMO the horn is much better sounding in the Yamaha, now, compaired to my RCF ART325i cabs that I currently use they are in a league all on there own as I feel the ART series cabs have the best sounding horn in there price range.

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I'm not really panning the Yamaha, but it's a $300ish box, and nothing to write home about. I would just figure the TRX, at double the cost, would be better.

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IMO the horn is much better sounding in the Yamaha, now, compaired to my RCF ART325i cabs that I currently use they are in a league all on there own as I feel the ART series cabs have the best sounding horn in there price range.

I've found that the Eminence driver gets kinda squawky when pushed pretty heard. It is pretty forgiving from my experience. They tend to hang in there a little longer when being abused a bit.

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the Yamaha horn sounds fine. I generally cut a little at 6.3k on my Yamaha cabs. I don't now that I'd expect something to sound like it's price, often that doesn't seem to work. sometimes things twice as expensive don't sound twice as good.

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Carvin vs JBL...is about as lopsided a matchup as you could come up with. My experience with Carvin gear has been that it looks alot like professional music gear - and may even advertise great specs - but when push comes to shove - it breaks early and often. The best part of Carvin is their catalog - it's pretty much downhill after that.

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Carvin vs JBL...is about as lopsided a matchup as you could come up with. My experience with Carvin gear has been that it
looks
alot like professional music gear - and may even advertise great specs - but when push comes to shove - it breaks early and often. The best part of Carvin is their catalog - it's pretty much downhill after that.

 

I couldn't agree more. I was lured by the catalog and just about everything I've bought from Carvin has never quite been as good as advertised. I did like the DCM1000 amp but I've been unimpressed with their wireless gear, speakers and bass guitars. Great catalog though. Remember the old "Super Concert System" from the catalogs in the late 70's? I've always wanted that...I'd dream of that semi pulling up and dropping off all that gear...those were the good old days.

 

Funny thing is it cost $15,000 for all that gear...and that's what I have invested in my current system of 2 subs, 2 tops, mixer, amps & FX. Pretty cool picture, isn't it?

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Carvin vs JBL...is about as lopsided a matchup as you could come up with. My experience with Carvin gear has been that it
looks
alot like professional music gear - and may even advertise great specs - but when push comes to shove - it breaks early and often. The best part of Carvin is their catalog - it's pretty much downhill after that.

 

I'm sure Carvin has some gear that is very decent...maybe very good.

 

However, all things being equal (an I'm not sure they are..I've never heard this Carvin Cab), I'd go with JBL for brand recognition, resale value, etc.

 

A quick story to underline the power of the JBL label. I have some Yorkville LS1208 subs: large, high SPL, heavy, horn loaded, quality subs. I also have 4 JBL Mpro 418 subs: small, light, moderate/high SPL, direct radiator, quality subs. One gig, I brought the Yorkville LS1208's. The place turned out to be small/tight and I had a problem maneuvering these big-boy's into place. However, the gig went fine and the Yorkies pounded (while idling along with barley a flicker on the sub amp). Anyway, on our return gig, I bring the JBL MP418's. I get two separate comments from return customers (wannabe band guys). They both say something to the effect..."Wow...you got some JBL's....you guy's sounded great before...I can't wait to hear how great It'll be with theses babies"..or something like that. You see, they had already deemed my MP418's to be an upgrade to my Yorkvilles.

 

The moral is brand recognition does count. I'm not saying by an inferior JBL JRX over a superior competitor...but if you can get an MRX cabinet for a similar price and performance to a Carvin equal....I'd get the JBL all day!

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The 153 has a horrible shaped horn on the cone mid. It was obviously built that way because it made the box design easier. I've also seen pics of some of their model runs where there was some sort of "pie-pan" deflector plate thing mounted onto the front of the cone. So Carvin must have been trying something to try and fix the poor design.

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The 153 has a horrible shaped horn on the cone mid. It was obviously built that way because it made the box design easier. I've also seen pics of some of their model runs where there was some sort of "pie-pan" deflector plate thing mounted onto the front of the cone. So Carvin must have been trying something to try and fix the poor design.

 

 

There is a deflector plate on the mids, and I never really had an issue with how the mids sounded. The horn was just never crisp enough, and if you EQ'd the horn so it was crisp you easily got tons of feedback.

Like I said earlier, if you are a DJ looking for a big & loud cab the TRX153 fits the bill perfect but for live sound it just didn't work for me.

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There is a deflector plate on the mids, and I never really had an issue with how the mids sounded. The horn was just never crisp enough, and if you EQ'd the horn so it was crisp you easily got tons of feedback.

Like I said earlier, if you are a DJ looking for a big & loud cab the TRX153 fits the bill perfect but for live sound it just didn't work for me.

The thing is, throughout their different runs, you'd see them without one on it, then with, then without. The last time I checked their site they didn't show the plate. As for the highend, that's a trait I've noticed in the past with a lot of their cabs, a lack of high end balance. Part of that, I believe might be the high crossover points they tend to use, probably to stay away from warranty costs. Maybe they pad it down a bit too for the same reason.

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Carvin vs JBL...is about as lopsided a matchup as you could come up with. My experience with Carvin gear has been that it
looks
alot like professional music gear - and may even advertise great specs - but when push comes to shove - it breaks early and often. The best part of Carvin is their catalog - it's pretty much downhill after that.

 

I am inclined to agree - especially as to the catalog. Just curious: what do you all think about Carvin being exclusively "Made in USA"? Does that make a difference? I know some lower end JBL Pro and consumer level products are made overseas, assembled in Mexico, etc. but I am not sure about the higher end products. Are they made in USA? Does that matter? Thanks, sorry I am a newbie when it comes to some of this stuff.

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In the days before the internet, before GuitarCenter, Sam Ash, and other large retailers, Carvin's direct sales business model made sense for the customer and for them. They provided an option that bypassed the mom & pop stores with huge markups on bottom feeder gear, so Carvin could provide good value for reasonable equipment. They were kind of like a mail-order Peavey.

 

They had some good innovations on guitars and bass too, better than average humbuckers and a good amount of customization without paying huge custom prices.

 

These days Carvin is only a good idea for Carvin, particularly for PA equipment. They do make a lot of good gear, but it usually isn't worth the hassle of dealing with them. The resale value for Carvin gear is terrible. Time has passed Carvin by. I haven't seen any gear from them in a long time that's a better value than what many other manufactures offer using the normal retail channels and Internet sellers. It doesn't help their credibility when they post ridiculously over inflated "retail" prices to fool customer into thinking they're getting a value price.

 

I think the vast majority of people who buy Carvin gear are satisfied with it, unless it dies. That's when it becomes a real pain to get service at a reasonable price.

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Regarding the TRX153, do a search on the LAB. AFAIK, Vinny bought his after Evan (over there) raved about his. BEFORE he fried the mid-range in ALL his TRX153s. Carvin has replaced the midrange with a different Emminence cone and can now handle the power better. A lot of people seem to like the sound AND appearance of the TRX before Evan started frying them up, including several LABsters that attended one of Evan's gigs.

 

But I don't have a horse in this race. I have Yamaha and Yorkville products currently and don't plan on changing for a long time.

 

Boomerweps

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Regarding the TRX153, do a search on the LAB. AFAIK, Vinny bought his after Evan (over there) raved about his. BEFORE he fried the mid-range in ALL his TRX153s. Carvin has replaced the midrange with a different Emminence cone and can now handle the power better. A lot of people seem to like the sound AND appearance of the TRX before Evan started frying them up, including several LABsters that attended one of Evan's gigs.


But I don't have a horse in this race. I have Yamaha and Yorkville products currently and don't plan on changing for a long time.


Boomerweps

 

 

I also never blew mine up like Evan did his, if you read any of my reviews on these cabs I always stated they sounded great with program music but need a LOT of EQ to get live vocals too sound good.

Like I said I used mine for 2-years with no mechanical issues at all and I got them too perform decent enough for my needs.

But, after I purchased a quality piece (RCF ART325i) and experianced how much easier it is to get a good cab too sound great there was no need to fuss with the TRX cabs anymore.......plus the weight difference was a huge plus.

It's too bad the TRX vocal reproduction was not better because that cab on it's own has a great sounding and punchy low end (especially on bass guitar).

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Like I said, Evan RAVED about them until he blew up the mid driver, then had to deal with Carvin from coast to coast for repairs. Had probs with them at first then finally helped him AND replaced the driver with a different one that could handle the power better. Never had a chance to work with them myself. Glad I talked my band buddy into the U15s vice the TRX153 when he insisted on buying a set of 3 ways ;>)

 

Boomerweps

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Like I said, Evan RAVED about them until he blew up the mid driver, then had to deal with Carvin from coast to coast for repairs. Had probs with them at first then finally helped him AND replaced the driver with a different one that could handle the power better. Never had a chance to work with them myself. Glad I talked my band buddy into the U15s vice the TRX153 when he insisted on buying a set of 3 ways ;>)


Boomerweps

 

The one great thing about Evan is that if you follow his postings around you get too pick up great deals on used gear when he moves onto the next best thing :)

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Remember the old "Super Concert System" from the catalogs in the late 70's? I've always wanted that...I'd dream of that semi pulling up and dropping off all that gear...those were the good old days.


Funny thing is it cost $15,000 for all that gear...and that's what I have invested in my current system of 2 subs, 2 tops, mixer, amps & FX. Pretty cool picture, isn't it?

 

 

That was back when their cabinets actually had something like JBL, GAUSS, Renkus-Heinz(horns) speakers in them.

 

Once they started having Eminence make their speakers, their cabinet designs completely changed. :cry:

 

My bass player had a pair of those 90x45 bass bins with a pair of the horns, and they were actually pretty good - but they had no kick if you tried to run a kick drum through them.

 

 

C

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