Amps, Mixer, DSP, and am I making the right decisions for my needs?

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TCarroll
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Amps, Mixer, DSP, and am I making the right decisions for my needs?

#1 Post by TCarroll »

Hello Everyone,

I've been looking to build my first BFM rig, still really in the research phase, I'll out line my goals and needs first then ask my questions as that seems to be the suggestion by most experienced member here. I have already order OT12 and T39 plans, read them both twice (I'll probably read them 2 more times before building) I've also been reading the forum lots to try and find answers but as with most new people around here I feel like I still want some specific answers and opinions.

I'm looking to start with a smaller setup for parties from 50 - 200 ish people, most likely it will normally be between 50-100 but it would be nice to have the ability to go bigger as bush parties are a big thing in my area and it would be nice to have some head room for the out doors. The system will be used exclusively for DJing with a pretty wide collection of genres. House, in all its various forms (tech, deep, tribal, jazz, melodic), some disco, some garage, some really heavy bass from time to time, techno, DnB etc. I would like if possible to be able to load the whole kit in my pick up, ideally only needing one trip to transport everything.

With that said my current plan is 2 OT12s using delta pro 12a drivers and 2 T39s using lab 12's - if I need more I can build more later is the game plan I am going with, at the same time I'll probably do my best to load these options out with the best performing drivers, and make the subs as wide as possible (obviously adhering to the plans and my space limitations) to hopefully avoid needing to build more in the future. I'd like to keep costs down and building simple, which is also part of why I'm not choosing to build bigger or more complicated cabs like tuba 45's or DR series even though based on my research they might be more suited to my needs.

I am a woodworker by trade and have a full shop to myself so I'm not really stressed about the actual build, but I do a lot of saw dust making and it can get to be a lot, working 8+ hours a day and then trying to build more things on top hence why I want to keep the building simple. I also plan to follow the plans and instructions as closely as possible and use kits from the likes of speakerhardware.com to make things as easy as possible I don't need to reinvent the wheel and all the advice here clearly states Bill is a F*ckin' magician so why change it. I do enough problem solving and plan designing in my day to day.

So my questions are as follows:

1 - Will this choice of set up be enough, primarily will T39's have enough low end for the music I want to play? A lot of the threads I have read comparing T39's and Tuba 30s indicate that Tuba's would be a better choice but will I be happy ENOUGH with Titan's (I'd probably run them V-plated maybe that would offer enough of a low end bump to not need Tuba's?). I've thought about going bigger, OT15's or DR250's and Tuba 45's or T48 but just not sure these bigger options are necessary for my needs or if I go bigger will it all fit in my truck....people never seem disappointed with BFM builds, regardless of what they build, but I'd hate to be the first!

2 -Are the drivers I am planning on using going to be the best choice, assuming I stick with those cabs? The kappalite series seems to offer similar performance but just be a light weight option???

Now I'm getting into the electronic side of things and I'd like to firstly say I've been a home audio guy for a long time, I understand the basics of hooking up amps, I've built a small pair of speakers before which are still pumping out solid sound and I'm quite happy with them. I've also helped friends set up bigger out door parties using active speakers which are pretty simple plug and play but the world of passive pro audio feels bigger and scarier and I definitely do not want to spend a bunch of money and time building this setup and then blow it up by making a stupid mistake (or any mistakes for that matter). I've found it very difficult to find the right thread with the level of knowledge I need to understand more, they either seem to be too basic or way to complicated. Bill previously posted a link to RANE's site suggesting they have all the info to get the basics however when I follow that link it is dead, I signed up for the RANE forum but it seems to only have info about their gear and equipment not the generalized knowledge I need about matching amps to speakers, setting V-limits, tweaking sound with DSP etc. Can someone please point me to a thread where I can do some reading and learning before I ask a bunch of stupid time wasting questions!

3 - In keeping with a more simple set up I saw Bill post about the Dayton Audio PPA800DSP on board amp, I have a lot of questions about this thing! Obviously it would be a bit more work to build that into the cabinets but I'm thinking it might make setup at gigs easier than hauling around a bunch of extra mixers, amps, DSPs and whatever else I need. Seeing as how they are 2 channel 200/600 W split, with my OT12 driver choice I realize I would be leaving a lot of capacity on the table if they can handle up to 500W and I'm only supplying them with 200W.
3a - in theory could this work as a stand alone unit and offer all the benefits of much more complex systems with independent amps, DSPs, mixers etc. I could run cables from my DJ mixer directly to each amp (L/R), each amp in turn powers one top and one sub....seems simple and easy in my head but worried I'm missing some steps or just don't understand the capabilities of this amp?

4 - If this amp isn't going to work as I'm hoping it will what are some budget friendly amp set ups that will help me maximize this system? Is DSP even necessary?

If you're still with me on this post thanks for reading and any support you can offer! I'm really excited to be a part of this community and looking forward to being able to get building and eventually sharing the process and joy of running some of the best sound this world has to offer!

Tyler

Bruce Weldy
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Re: Amps, Mixer, DSP, and am I making the right decisions for my needs?

#2 Post by Bruce Weldy »

TCarroll wrote: Tue Mar 07, 2023 1:09 am With that said my current plan is 2 OT12s using delta pro 12a drivers and 2 T39s using lab 12's - if I need more I can build more later is the game plan I am going with, at the same time I'll probably do my best to load these options out with the best performing drivers, and make the subs as wide as possible (obviously adhering to the plans and my space limitations) to hopefully avoid needing to build more in the future. I'd like to keep costs down and building simple, which is also part of why I'm not choosing to build bigger or more complicated cabs like tuba 45's or DR series even though based on my research they might be more suited to my needs.
T39 will not go as low as a T30 or T48, but it will be louder than the T30 and smaller than the T48. With V-Plating, it will most likely serve your needs and keep the size down. Why not go with the neo drivers to start with? The 3012LF will give the same result as a Lab 12 with less weight (and a little less cost last time I looked). The 2512 will keep the weight down for the OT12s also. Plus the OT12 is a bit back heavy, so the lighter driver helps if you are putting them on sticks.
1 - Will this choice of set up be enough, primarily will T39's have enough low end for the music I want to play? A lot of the threads I have read comparing T39's and Tuba 30s indicate that Tuba's would be a better choice but will I be happy ENOUGH with Titan's (I'd probably run them V-plated maybe that would offer enough of a low end bump to not need Tuba's?). I've thought about going bigger, OT15's or DR250's and Tuba 45's or T48 but just not sure these bigger options are necessary for my needs or if I go bigger will it all fit in my truck....people never seem disappointed with BFM builds, regardless of what they build, but I'd hate to be the first!
Absolutely no reason for a bigger top box if you are using subs. The OT12/T39 mix is a good one.
2 -Are the drivers I am planning on using going to be the best choice, assuming I stick with those cabs? The kappalite series seems to offer similar performance but just be a light weight option???
see above

3 - In keeping with a more simple set up I saw Bill post about the Dayton Audio PPA800DSP on board amp, I have a lot of questions about this thing! Obviously it would be a bit more work to build that into the cabinets but I'm thinking it might make setup at gigs easier than hauling around a bunch of extra mixers, amps, DSPs and whatever else I need. Seeing as how they are 2 channel 200/600 W split, with my OT12 driver choice I realize I would be leaving a lot of capacity on the table if they can handle up to 500W and I'm only supplying them with 200W.
That plate amp won't fit in an OT12. It will fit in a T39, but I wouldn't. I have one in a SLA Pro and it's great for that, but if you are running multiple speakers, it is cheaper and easier to just use a proper amp and a driverack. And that wattage rating is at 4ohms if I remember correctly.
3a - in theory could this work as a stand alone unit and offer all the benefits of much more complex systems with independent amps, DSPs, mixers etc. I could run cables from my DJ mixer directly to each amp (L/R), each amp in turn powers one top and one sub....seems simple and easy in my head but worried I'm missing some steps or just don't understand the capabilities of this amp?
That configuration can work, however two issues.....1. You shouldn't be splitting the subs like that - see the sub sticky.
2. That amp can't drive the sub speakers to their full potential. If you are using premium drivers and want to get the most noise for the pack space - that amp won't do it.
4 - If this amp isn't going to work as I'm hoping it will what are some budget friendly amp set ups that will help me maximize this system? Is DSP even necessary?
Yes, DSP is necessary, but not necessarily in the amp. Use a driverack. You can find 'em used all day for around 200 bucks. Cheap, dumb amps work fine. Crown xls series. QSC GX series. Several ways to go here and probably all available used.
If you're still with me on this post thanks for reading and any support you can offer! I'm really excited to be a part of this community and looking forward to being able to get building and eventually sharing the process and joy of running some of the best sound this world has to offer!
Good luck and keep asking questions as things start to take shape in your head.

6 - T39 3012LF
4 - OT12 2512
1 - T24
1 - SLA Pro
2 - XF210


"A system with a few knobs set up by someone who knows what they are doing is always better than one with a lot of knobs set up by someone who doesn't."

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Seth
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Re: Amps, Mixer, DSP, and am I making the right decisions for my needs?

#3 Post by Seth »

Hey Tyler, I'm Seth. Welcome to the forum :thumbsup:

I think your reasoning behind choosing the OT12 is solid. Good choice for your interests and goals. A pair of them should be a good place to start. Two may be all you need, or you may decide you need more as time goes on.

The T39 isn't a poor choice either. But, I'll share a little bit of my personal point of view on choosing the right BFM sub design... If it's going to be used outdoors at all, eliminate Tuba's from the list of choices. Which Titan to choose? If you're primarily going to play live music, choose the T39. If you're primarily going to play modern recorded music or you require more sensitivity than the T39 offers, choose T48. If you can't manage the size of the T48 (they're BIG), dial back and go T39.

Something you may want to take into consideration, especially for bush parties, is generator power. The cabs with the highest sensitivity will take CONSIDERABLY less power to reach any given volume. Case in point, it would take only 300 watts total for two max width 3015LF loaded T48's to match the output of two max width 3012LF loaded T39's at over 750 combined watts.

I'm with Bruce on the rest. Get yourself a dbx Driverack and a couple conventional (class D) amplifiers from one of the reputable manufacturers and you'll be all set.

T39 vs T48 (not mine)
T48-5.jpg

By the way, there's no stupid questions here. At least, not for me. Ask all you like. I'll see what I can come up with for some reading material for you about tuning and all that.

Good to have you Tyler :thumbsup:

-Seth-


P.S. Take a moment to fill in your bio. Where are ya from?
Build in process - 2 WH6, one Alpha 6a loaded, one PRV Audio 6MB250-NDY loaded

Two 2x6 shorty SLA Pro's
One T39, 16", 3012LF loaded
Tall AutoTuba, 20" wide, 2x 8" MCM 55-2421
TruckTuba, 8½" wide, 2x 8" MCM 55-2421

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Tom Smit
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Location: Sarnia, Ont. Canada

Re: Amps, Mixer, DSP, and am I making the right decisions for my needs?

#4 Post by Tom Smit »

Hi Tyler! Welcome to the forum from another Canadian.

If you have a full-size pickup, then I suggest the T48. You could stand up two behind the cab, and load the rest of the gear behind that.
TomS

TCarroll
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Re: Amps, Mixer, DSP, and am I making the right decisions for my needs?

#5 Post by TCarroll »

Hey Everyone thanks for all the info and speedy responses!

Bruce thanks for the driver suggestions, sometimes the difference between drivers seems really small but making the decision feel BIG! Also glad to know that Dayton amp won't do what I need, been looking around at some used options for amps feeling like QSC GX 5 might be my best option, seems to be the best performance to cost, might not have the head room I would like but comparing it cost wise to the GX 7 I think I'll sacrifice a bit of volume for some $ I the bank. Also good to know driver rack can be found for pretty reasonable prices used.

Seth, your point about bumping up to T48's is valid, especially when I start to think about generator power! Still not totally sure I want to go that big, the photo you shared makes the T48 look absolutely massive in comparison, but the virtual show room thread you created makes it seem much more manageable with a model for scale! I'll have to take some measurements of my truck cab to ensure they will fit standing up but they should as Tom suggests. I'll have to do some driver research on that one as well. This will probably be the biggest question for me T39's or T48's?

Would still really appreciate some info, forum posts, online resources, YouTube videos, etc on amp setup, selection and all the necessary protection settings.

Grant Bunter
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Re: Amps, Mixer, DSP, and am I making the right decisions for my needs?

#6 Post by Grant Bunter »

Hi Tyler,
Welcome to the forum from an Aussie lol.

Bruce will tell you himself he doesn't even know what Bass n Drums, Dubstep. House, Trance, Psy etc etc etc are. For once I told someone before he did :)
Bruce and I are inclined to do live music, and T39's are more than adequate for that and recorded old school rock, country, jazz etc.
If that's where you were going, I would have agreed with Bruce 100%

But you're not, so Seth and Tom's suggestion is gold here.
Go nuts, ask questions, have fun...
Built:
DR 250: x 2 melded array, 2x CD horn, March 2012 plans.
T39's: 4 x 20" KL3010LF , 2 x 28" 3012LF.
WH8: x 6 with melded array wired series/parallel.
Bunter's Audio and Lighting "like"s would be most appreciated...

Bruce Weldy
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Re: Amps, Mixer, DSP, and am I making the right decisions for my needs?

#7 Post by Bruce Weldy »

Grant Bunter wrote: Wed Mar 08, 2023 1:04 am
Bruce will tell you himself he doesn't even know what Bass n Drums, Dubstep. House, Trance, Psy etc etc etc are. For once I told someone before he did :)
Hey! I know what that is......it's weird sounding names for strange noise that people call music.

My agreement with the OP's choice of T39 was based soley on pack space as that was one of his concerns. But it he's got the room, then certianly the T48 would be the way to go with the size system he's discussing.

Oh, and don't let Grant try to fool you into thinking he's young and hip.....or is it hop? Hip Hop? Oh hell, I don't know.....think I'll go listen to some Lawrence Welk.

6 - T39 3012LF
4 - OT12 2512
1 - T24
1 - SLA Pro
2 - XF210


"A system with a few knobs set up by someone who knows what they are doing is always better than one with a lot of knobs set up by someone who doesn't."

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Seth
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Re: Amps, Mixer, DSP, and am I making the right decisions for my needs?

#8 Post by Seth »

:loler:
Glad I didn't have any coffee in my mouth when I read that!
Build in process - 2 WH6, one Alpha 6a loaded, one PRV Audio 6MB250-NDY loaded

Two 2x6 shorty SLA Pro's
One T39, 16", 3012LF loaded
Tall AutoTuba, 20" wide, 2x 8" MCM 55-2421
TruckTuba, 8½" wide, 2x 8" MCM 55-2421

jimbo7
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Re: Amps, Mixer, DSP, and am I making the right decisions for my needs?

#9 Post by jimbo7 »

3a- You could run 2 tops and 2 subs off of one amp. The tops would be daisy-chained to channel A and subs to channel B. This is of course if the amp can handle it. The music would be in mono but that doesn't matter (subs are run in mono anyway). So a simple sequence is: laptop > mixer > DSP > amp > speaker > ear
BFM builds:
XF212
T24 BP102 24"
2x SLA's 6-5" mids, 9- gt-302's
2x AT 14" MCM 55-2421
TrT 5" MCM 55-2421
AT 18" JBL GTO804
2x OT12 flat array
2x SLA Pro 2-Alpha 6's 2-Goldwoods
2x T39 24" 3012lf
Simplex 10 BP102

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