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NightmareAftershockLLC
11-23-2010, 08:10 PM
So, what kind of speakers do you all use in your haunts? Powered or non-powered?

I usually use non-powered when I was DJing, but was just wondering what you guys use!

terrormasue
11-23-2010, 09:28 PM
I have one attraction that will be inside and the other two are outside. I can see using nonpowered speakers inside but I am not sure about outside in a pretty big area. Worried about losing power over a large area,,,ie cemetery? I want the best bang for my buck. I know powered speakers and more expensive. Any suggestions? Thanks for bringing this topic up.

Sue

poison
11-23-2010, 10:01 PM
Powered Speakers for props.
And Non-Powered for Ambient tracks.

This is good source for speakers.
http://www.onlyfactorydirect.com/

These seem to fit the bill bill for most haunts.
This is in-wall mount speakers.

Theater Solutions Symphony Series 8" In Wall Speakers TSS8WAmazing Sound | Theater Solutions Symphony Series 8" In Wall Speakers are perfect for your HD home theater surround sound system or whole house audio.

Pair 8" Interlaced Glass Fiber In Wall Speakers
28-21,000 Hz Range
300 Watts RMS and 600 Watts Max
95dB Sensitivity
$124.99
Retail: $349.99
You Save 64%

OR...... FOR OUTDOOR or INDOOR....

300 Watt Indoor / Outdoor Black Speakers | Theater Solutions TS425ODB300 Watt Indoor / Outdoor Black Speaker pair fits any indoor or outdoor environment brilliantly.

New Black Weather Resistant Indoor/Outdoor Speaker Pair
150 Watts RMS per pair & 300 Watts Max per pair
Sensitivity is 90db with 80-20,000 Hz Frequency Response
$74.99
Retail: $499.99
You Save 85%

MindWerxKMG
11-24-2010, 05:04 AM
We used powered for everything including ambient sounds. We purchased ours through OnlyFactoryDirect.com as Adam mentions in his response. Great prices and service!

NightmareAftershockLLC
11-24-2010, 02:03 PM
Can any of you list specific brands you really liked? Best bang for the buck?

monsterwax
11-24-2010, 08:26 PM
I've never used powered before, so I have no opinion on that. But I can tell you to avoid getting speakers with that fake rubber cones. That stuff falls apart in the heat. Use real rubber only. They are the ones where the woofer has dark rubber rings attaching it to the speaker box, not the gray stuff with tiny air bubbles in it. It saves the company maybe $2 but will cost you your speakers the first summer in the sun OR heat. Everytime I see a used speaker with that crap, it's cracked along the outer edge (attached to the speaker). It's junk through and through.

legendsofthefog
11-25-2010, 08:41 AM
I have not looked into onlyfactorydirect.com yet, but we have used Behringer B212A (discontinued)and B212D speakers in the past, and they're the only way to fly. They have great punch and are built to last.

NightmareOnYourStreet
11-28-2010, 12:00 AM
Behringer has really made a name for themselves. the really deliver especially for the price. they sound great and the price is great. i would go powered either way. that way you can just plug an ipod or cd player straight in and have it for each individual scene or run a cable and have it for a couple scenes whatever. unpowered you have to worry about amps, mixers unless you plus straight into the amp which i would not recommend just takes up more space time and money. powered your going to have exactly the amount of power the speaker needs and you can plug it in, in that scene.

Allen H
11-28-2010, 12:22 AM
This is a great thread.
I use alot of $80 computer speaker sets (powered) thathave the subwoofer box and two other speakers. They work great and are easily concealed. Not for super loud, but great for scenes.

ETHEREAL_FX
11-28-2010, 07:07 PM
In years of designing not only haunted attractions but audio/video distribution and automation for residential and commercial clients I have a few things we go over with any of our clients. Regarding what type of speakers there are a few different choices that all have their place within a show.
1. 8ohm/4ohm: These are your most common passive speakers meaning that they require an amplifier and they are available in every configuration from $5 thrift store buys to million dollar custom installation pieces. These are readily available as are the associated amps and distribution systems and as such are great when trying to keep the initial budget down while allowing the system to grow and be replaced as needed down the road. Some folks worry greatly about long cable runs but finding a decent amp that can handle several hundred ft runs is not a problem. In most haunts <25,000ksqft 35 watts per channel should get you anywhere your trying to go and have enough power that you’ll never max out a channel.
2. 70vdc (commercial distribution): For Large haunted attractions >25,000sqft you may consider a 70vdc distribution system. The price for the amps and speakers are not much more but it allows extremely long runs (thousands of feet) and allows many speakers to be daisy chained together on a single run which can save money and labor.
3. Line level distribution (powered speakers): Powered speakers are great for locally triggered props and home haunters and I still use them in pro haunts here and there when there is a need for something special that is far from a control room and is stored on a prop controller or mp3 player. The variety of inexpensive PC speakers out there is fantastic and like Allen said, $80 can give you some real kick and it’s easy to hide. Where these system fail is in distribution. Long runs are virtually impossible and fidelity isn’t so great so if you are planning on having a huge, loud, prop that needs to be really clearly understood or controlled from a central location these are not great. In addition, if you’re looking at cost per channel, this is not the efficient way to go. Remember that when you plan an audio system saving a few bucks in infrastructure could cost you a lot in labor or added materials down the road.

www.ETHEREALFX.com (http://www.ETHEREALFX.com)

Darkangel
11-28-2010, 07:26 PM
Overkill?

Having decent speakers playing ambient music rhroughtout your show and having a powered speaker in each scene that ties into to that scene or comes from an animation is all you should need for a nice sounding haunts.

Of course you could all out and spends tens of thousands but it's probably overkill the guests are only in a scene for a few seconds and they're gone to the next...

DA

NightmareAftershockLLC
11-28-2010, 07:37 PM
I agree with both you DA and Ethereal. There is a time and a place for overkill, where you just completely annihilate every sense of the human, ergo Smell, Touch, Hearing, and vision. But mostly a few little speakers in each room should do. Depends on your angle. I was only asking what pros use, because my only major experience with this stuff is overkill amps and 8 ohm professional EV speakers I used to use whenI was djing. Is it possible, does anyone know, to use my old crown amps on these little bitty guys (speakers)?

poison
11-29-2010, 12:14 AM
Okay this has been a lot of great info from all different perspectives.

Which gets me back to my original post.

PROPS: Powered speaker (2.1 computer powered speakers) work great! Guitar amps also do the trick.

Ambient sounds: Stereo (Crown Amp, Whatever amp big or small. 40 watt minimum.)

It is not cost effective to use powered speakers if you are just running a ambient sound track with 2 to 4 speakers in a room.

I personally have set up 2 30' hallways using a couple 100 watt garage sale receivers, 4 to 5 pairs of speakers playing my Evil Whispers in one and 1000 files buzz in the other. Coming from all around you. Very effective : )

If you are trying to really crank up your ambient or speech tracks for cue lines etc. then get into higher powered amps or big powered speakers (Behringer B212A).

But for me the only time i ever needed more then 100 watts is with my thunder sound track to really crank up the dramatic affect. I used an old 350 watt receiver for that. The kind that weighs as many watts as it is : )

ETHEREAL_FX
11-29-2010, 01:52 AM
At first I thought that the speaker systems I spoke of were considered "overkill", then I thought perhaps it was just my lengthy reply. But either way, I have a train of thought I ask all pro haunters to think about. I completely agree with running a few home stereo amps throughout the show and hosting audio locally. I recommend this solution all the time for a number of reasons, and is still the best option for some situations, budgets, etc. I mention audio distribution (which can really be done on a shoe string budget) because a lot of pro-haunters don't really know how attainable it really is nor do they think about things like the audio in the show as a business decision, but if your running a pro show centralized control and content distribution means fast fixes when you have paying customers in line, quick revamping if you need to change a scene, easy start up and shut down, P.A. w/emergency over rides (required in many states), and simplified operation (you don't need to teach people how to operate a bunch of old receivers that all operate differently and are stashed all over the show). In the end it should be the goal that all haunted attractions are headed toward and if you plan properly you can add equipment as your attraction and budgets grow so you don't spend money twice. What may seem like overkill at the beginning can save boatloads in the coming years and get you a better quality show resulting in better ratings and more customers. Example: In the past I have put together a 48ch. distribution system w/ 48 x speakers that is easy to use and allows tons of growth in a road case w/ patch panels and several thousand feet of speaker wire for $3,000-$5,000 depending on features. Less than many props and this really steps your show up to PRO-grade. We are not talking concert sound quality, what this gets you is distribution, reliability, and simplicity (48ch in a haunt with 16 rooms means 3 speakers per). Large scale theme parks centralize control and content because it makes good financial sense, not because it's cool (although the fact that you can point to that killer amp rack and say "check that out" really does feel cool).

Consider the pro's and con's of any system before you choose. They all have their place, there is no correct answer, what is right for one show may not be right for another.


www.etherealfx.com (http:// www.etherealfx.com)

NightmareAftershockLLC
11-29-2010, 07:33 AM
At first I thought that the speaker systems I spoke of were considered "overkill", then I thought perhaps it was just my lengthy reply. But either way, I have a train of thought I ask all pro haunters to think about. I completely agree with running a few home stereo amps throughout the show and hosting audio locally. I recommend this solution all the time for a number of reasons, and is still the best option for some situations, budgets, etc. I mention audio distribution (which can really be done on a shoe string budget) because a lot of pro-haunters don't really know how attainable it really is nor do they think about things like the audio in the show as a business decision, but if your running a pro show centralized control and content distribution means fast fixes when you have paying customers in line, quick revamping if you need to change a scene, easy start up and shut down, P.A. w/emergency over rides (required in many states), and simplified operation (you don't need to teach people how to operate a bunch of old receivers that all operate differently and are stashed all over the show). In the end it should be the goal that all haunted attractions are headed toward and if you plan properly you can add equipment as your attraction and budgets grow so you don't spend money twice. What may seem like overkill at the beginning can save boatloads in the coming years and get you a better quality show resulting in better ratings and more customers. Example: In the past I have put together a 48ch. distribution system w/ 48 x speakers that is easy to use and allows tons of growth in a road case w/ patch panels and several thousand feet of speaker wire for $3,000-$5,000 depending on features. Less than many props and this really steps your show up to PRO-grade. We are not talking concert sound quality, what this gets you is distribution, reliability, and simplicity (48ch in a haunt with 16 rooms means 3 speakers per). Large scale theme parks centralize control and content because it makes good financial sense, not because it's cool (although the fact that you can point to that killer amp rack and say "check that out" really does feel cool).

Consider the pro's and con's of any system before you choose. They all have their place, there is no correct answer, what is right for one show may not be right for another.


www.etherealfx.com (http:// www.etherealfx.com)


I really like this reply because it is dead on. I am agreeing that spending the 5 k is an INVESTMENT. You cant buy a decent animatronic for under 4 anyways!

Now, delving more into this topic, now that we have a good idea for speakers, and what scenarios might demand certain amps, or being self-powered, what CONTROLLERS do you use to distribute the sound across different channels? I am used to mixing boards using no more than 8 channels... so now what? spend the thousands on a mixing board? or is there a simpler way? Computer control? CD decks?

ETHEREAL_FX
11-29-2010, 02:46 PM
depending on budgets and control requirements there are tons of options for audio sources. I have used, piles of small MP3 players purchased for a few dollars each all the way to the extreme of a PC based multi ch. output device. There are devices that allow up to 128 ch. out from a single PC and they are a couple of thousand but again if your looking at a large PRO-haunt that is well worth the flexibility it gives you. Most "mixing-boards" that a DJ might use for example usually do the opposite of what a haunter wants. We want a bunch of independently controllable ch. that get sent all over the show. Those mixing boards take a bunch of inputs and mix them down to 2 ch. that is moving in the wrong direction. The sticky part of this question is that there are very few industries who share similar audio needs with the haunt industry so equipment is pricey. However as I mentioned in a previous post, if you start with the distribution, and play from cheap-o mp3 players, then next year buy a PC and a 48ch. output blade you come in at under $10k and now have all the control, flexibility, and reliability that Disney has in it's parks. Proper planning can allow you to move your show in the right direction slowly and steadily if that is what you wish. I have designed and installed said systems and have always had very happy clients.

www.ETHEREALFX.com (http://www.ETHEREALFX.com)

NightmareAftershockLLC
11-29-2010, 05:02 PM
Well I plan on doing computer control if its possible.... So what programs offer the most flexibility? =)

NightmareAftershockLLC
12-05-2010, 12:06 AM
BUMP =)

Hoping Ethereal can answer this one =)

Terra
12-17-2010, 02:37 PM
Powered Speakers for props.
And Non-Powered for Ambient tracks.


OR...... FOR OUTDOOR or INDOOR....

300 Watt Indoor / Outdoor Black Speakers | Theater Solutions TS425ODB300 Watt Indoor / Outdoor Black Speaker pair fits any indoor or outdoor environment brilliantly.

New Black Weather Resistant Indoor/Outdoor Speaker Pair
150 Watts RMS per pair & 300 Watts Max per pair
Sensitivity is 90db with 80-20,000 Hz Frequency Response
$74.99
Retail: $499.99
You Save 85%

I was wondering... How are these powered? By another amp or from a prop controller?

poison
12-18-2010, 12:15 AM
These 300 Watt speakers need an amp.

poison
12-18-2010, 12:20 AM
If you are looking to hear a speaker with a little more bass. This has a 5.25 inch 8 ohm rubber surround woofer.
Consider these...
http://www.onlyfactorydirect.com/p-98-2-pair-pack-outdoor-black-omni-directional-speakers-2ts525odb.aspx
$94.99

2 pair pack Outdoor Black Omni-directional Speakers | 2TS525ODB.
200 Watts RMS per pair & 400 Watts Max per pair.

Terra
12-18-2010, 07:05 AM
If you are looking to hear a speaker with a little more bass. This has a 5.25 inch 8 ohm rubber surround woofer.
Consider these...
http://www.onlyfactorydirect.com/p-98-2-pair-pack-outdoor-black-omni-directional-speakers-2ts525odb.aspx
$94.99

2 pair pack Outdoor Black Omni-directional Speakers | 2TS525ODB.
200 Watts RMS per pair & 400 Watts Max per pair.

Thank you so much. I've been looking for two speaker needs. One for the FireFly Lightning for the front of the house and a great speaker for props. Seems like this one would be great for the props :D

Do you think that this speaker recommendation would also be good for the FireFly lightning? I was using a guitar amp. Had large sound but was flat at times and wasn't that convincing.

poison
12-18-2010, 04:02 PM
I would not use those speakers for Thunder.
You need something big for that.

Those speakers for $94.99 i suggested would be great for ambient sound tracks.

This will work fine for props it has a built in amp (powered speakers).

http://www.onlyfactorydirect.com/p-215-21-multimedia-speaker-system-computer-gaming-speakers-theater-solutions-ts211.aspx TS21
$49.99

This would work GREAT for thunder. They are powered speakers.
http://www.onlyfactorydirect.com/p-508-10-powered-speakers-stands-dj-set-1000w-pp1003aset1.aspx
$354.99

If you already have an amp for your thunder then these speakers would kick some but!
http://www.onlyfactorydirect.com/p-555-15-abs-passive-loudspeaker-set-pp15101set1.aspx
$212.99 each

I should be start working for this company! I can't believe how i keep throwing them bones : )

Terra
12-19-2010, 08:30 AM
I would not use those speakers for Thunder.
You need something big for that.

Those speakers for $94.99 i suggested would be great for ambient sound tracks.

This will work fine for props it has a built in amp (powered speakers).

http://www.onlyfactorydirect.com/p-215-21-multimedia-speaker-system-computer-gaming-speakers-theater-solutions-ts211.aspx TS21
$49.99

This would work GREAT for thunder. They are powered speakers.
http://www.onlyfactorydirect.com/p-508-10-powered-speakers-stands-dj-set-1000w-pp1003aset1.aspx
$354.99

If you already have an amp for your thunder then these speakers would kick some but!
http://www.onlyfactorydirect.com/p-555-15-abs-passive-loudspeaker-set-pp15101set1.aspx
$212.99 each

I should be start working for this company! I can't believe how i keep throwing them bones : )

Thanks so much!!!! You're awesome :)

zombietoxin
12-20-2010, 03:21 PM
For those comparing notes I've used TIC 120 speakers and really like the sound/base quality for their compact size. They can be found for around $100 per pair.

I also have some Yamaha NS-AW350's on the way that I'll let you know about. They were about $80 per pair. btw, the reviews said the 350's had better base than the 390's.

I'm going to try those from Only Factory Direct and compare- $94 for 2 pair seems like a hell of a deal. Thanks for the tip.

www.parts-express.com has some really neat goodies as well. I'm eyeing their transducers...

zombietoxin
12-20-2010, 03:31 PM
Since the topic is budet minded audio. I'm eyeing these amps for background audio sources and was wondering if anyone has experience with these?

http://cgi.ebay.com/GLI-PRO-XPA-7-4-000-WATT-DJ-POWER-AMPLIFIER-AMP-w-USB_W0QQitemZ350408649814QQcategoryZ23787QQcmdZVie wItemQQ_trksidZp4340.m263QQ_trkparmsZalgo%3DSIC%26 its%3DI%252BC%26itu%3DUCI%252BIA%252BUA%252BFICS%2 52BUFI%26otn%3D10%26pmod%3D300477427763%26ps%3D63% 26clkid%3D5791129530612446275

They are an amp AND mp3 player combined- using either USB or memory stick, and come in a variety of power levels. They are also lockable. Just wondering if they are junk.

zombietoxin
12-29-2010, 02:24 PM
So here's what I have to say about the above mentioned speakers after trying them out personally.
.
I tried TIC 120 speakers with 6.5" woofers, Yamaha ns-aw350 with 6.5" woofers and the Parts Express 2-pair speaker deal with 4" woofers. My review is based on a comparison to a typical larger non-powered speaker: MTX TP 1200, which is a 12" woofer. These guys, while not high end put out great sound and bass for the money- usually around $110 each. You're going to struggle getting a perfect thunder crack out of them, but otherwise are great and last a long time.

First, for the money its hard to not go with the parts express deal. They sound ok and for their intended use (which is not bass reproduction) they will work just fine. Bottom line is that they have very little bass, even compared to the other two with slightly bigger woofers.

Second, over all I'd have to say for a little extra money (compared to the Yamaha) the TIC sound a lot better. Still relatively no bass, but not completely lacking. I think the upper end is a little brighter than the Yamaha and the Parts Express too.

Which leaves the Yamaha. It comes a close second to the TIC and for the money maybe its a better deal. But I choose TIC as a speaker for areas that may need some bass.

Anyway, I say: Parts express for background with little to no bass requirements- cheap! And the TIC or Yamaha for other moderately heavy sound situations.

If money and size were no problem I'd say go with MTX 1200's and you would rock the house!

Terra
01-02-2011, 12:48 PM
I was looking hard at the thunder speaker suggestions. I don't have an amp so the powered speakers seem to be the way to go for me.

But two things are stopping me from buying them. Price and perhaps they could be too loud for my needs. I'm just a home haunt so I do want really good thunder sound but I may never crank up those awesome speakers you suggested so it could be a waste of money. Plus, the sound is mono coming out of the FireFly box so I was thinking of going with just one speaker to save a bit of money.

With that in mind, how about this single 10" speaker? http://www.onlyfactorydirect.com/p-502-telescoping-speaker-stand-and-10-2-way-speaker-pp1002a1set1.aspx Would it give me crisp boomy thunder for a yard haunt or should I look at something bigger, 12": http://www.onlyfactorydirect.com/p-494-12-active-speaker-stand-dj-set-600w-pp1202a1set1.aspx or even 15"?: http://www.onlyfactorydirect.com/p-512-15-powered-speaker-and-telescoping-stand-pp1503a1set1.aspx

Thanks again :)

poison
01-02-2011, 03:30 PM
I think you could get away with the 10" powered speakers as long as you get 2 and separate them for a good stereo feel.