Not only do we sell the best live sound equipment, we also have the best professional installation department you will find. From mixing consoles, power amps, microphones, lights, subs and everything in between, N-Tune Music has EVERYTHING for your band, church, school or organization to sound the best that you possibly can.
Contact us for a free consultation and we can correctly evaluate your particular sound system / video / lighting needs.
Video Projection / Lighting
Let N-Tune Music and Sound handle all of your video projection / lighting needs. We install, setup and service.
It’s important to research all of your options when buying the gear for your live sound setup, and it’s never a bad idea to get a little more power than you think you will need.
What Will You Need?
Sound systems come in all sizes, and one thing to consider is “How many inputs will you need?” What will you be running through the mixer (drums, guitars, vocals, keyboards, bass, etc.?”) Your mixer can have 4 – 32 channels or more, so it’s a good idea to plan out how many channels you will need to accomadate everything that you will need to plug into the system and to think if you will ever need more. It’s better to buy a mixer with a few more inputs, just to be safe.
We can discuss this with you as you plan your system, and can guide you in the decision making process.
No matter which mic you choose, two key factors are ruggedness and directionality, or pick up pattern (the ability to pick up a particular sound source without picking up others). For example, one microphone might have an omni directional pickup pattern, which picks up sound all around the mic capsule, while another microphone may have a cardioid response, which is more suited for picking up audio directly in front of the capsule.
Dynamic microphones are physically rugged and can handle high sound pressure sound levels, so they’re the most common choice for PA systems. They also resist noise from handling, making them popular in hand-held applications (e.g., vocalists). The tradeoff is that the sound isn’t as refined as other technologies, but live, these differences are negligible.
Dynamic microphones can be used to pickup any audio from the stage, or in the studio. They are extremely versatile. The most popular application is for amplifying a singer’s voice so that it can be heard by a crowd. There are other reasons you’d reach for a dynamic mic, such as for amplifying a guitar player’s amp, which may not be loud enough on it’s own. Dynamic microphones many times have a high SPL (sound pressure level) rating, which can handle the pressure change that, say, a kick drum makes without overloading the microphone.
By using dynamic microphones to capture every possible source, it allows the live sound engineer to have complete control over the audio levels, which in turn can even out the stereo field and provide balance in an otherwise chaotic performance. While dynamic microphones are ideal for live performances, many great records have been made using these rugged tools.
Condenser microphones are common for recording due to their excellent frequency response and ability to respond to transients (rapid changes in level, as from percussion). They’re more fragile than dynamic mics, and most models need a power supply—either from an internal battery, or from “phantom” power that can be supplied by all but the least expensive mixers (see our article here on Mixers). However, condenser mics designed for live use are getting more rugged, and with proper care, can hold up to the rigors of the road. As they’re sensitive to handling noise, they’re usually mounted on mic stands.
There are two common condenser mic types. Small-diaphragm mics are more sensitive, so they excel at reproducing transients. Large-diaphragm mics tend to give a “warmer” sound, and are often used for vocals in the studio.
Condenser microphones are perfect for studio applications, where every a high level of detail is necessary. They are the typically go to for acoustic instruments and micing elements from a distance, but this shouldn’t stop you from experimenting to find the best possible microphone for the job. On the stage, one must take care when placing the microphone in front of the audio source in order to avoid it picking up other instruments or causing feedback. The pickup pattern [link] heavily influences the mic’s ability to capture unwanted background sound, so be sure to be aware of this when choosing a condenser mic for your recordings or live performances.
Speakers / Monitors
Choosing a loudspeaker system in a very subjective matter. There are so many attributes in determining how well a loudspeaker system will sound and each person hears and perceives sound differently. It is recommended to listen to as many speaker systems as you can for long periods of time to determine what is right for you. You must also consider what speaker system will properly integrate with the electronics you plan on using them with. Room acoustics play a vital role in determining how well a system will sound in its given environment. A speaker system that may sound great in the dealer showroom may sound horrifying in your venue environment. Take the time to audition the speakers you plan on buying to determine if they are right for you. In the end it is what makes you happy and you have to be the one who can live comfortably with them happily ever after, at least until you decide it is time to upgrade again.
Visit with us to see your options and to hear each of the speaker models we sell.
How Much Amplifier Power Do I Need?
I’m playing folk music in a coffee shop. How much amplifier power do I need?
Our rock group will be playing in a 2000-seat concert hall. How many watts will we need?
I just bought some PA speakers. I want to play them as loud as they can get without blowing them up. Which amplifier should I get?
First, define your goal. Do you want to power some loudspeakers so they play as loud as possible without burning out? If so, all you need to read is the section below. Do you want to achieve a certain loudness in a certain venue? If so, skip to the section called Power vs. Application.
How much power can my speakers handle?
You can determine this by looking at the speaker’s data sheet. Look for the Nominal Impedance spec. Typically it will be 2, 4, 8 or 16 ohms. Next, look for the loudspeaker specification called Continuous Power Handling or Continuous Power Rating. It might be called IEC rating or Power capacity.
If you can prevent the power amp from clipping (by using a limiter), use a power amp that supplies 2 to 4 times the speakers continuous power rating per channel. This allows 3 to 6 dB of headroom for peaks in the audio signal. Speakers are built to handle those short-term peaks. If you cant keep the power amp from clipping (say, you have no limiter and the system is overdriven or goes into feedback) the amplifier power should equal the speakers continuous power rating. That way the speaker wont be damaged if the amp clips by overdriving its input. In this case there is no headroom for peaks, so youll have to drive the speaker at less than its full rated power if you want to avoid distortion