Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Beginners Guide to Cables

It’s not easy being a DJ. There are loads of cables from hooking up your mixer to setting up your lights. All them little holes that you don’t have a clue what they even do. Here’s our bluffers guide to all things cables so you know what you need and what does what to get the best out of your DJ setup.

Balanced / Unbalanced / Stereo / Mono
Balanced audio is a method of interconnecting audio
equipment using impedance-balanced lines. This type of connection is very important in sound recording and
production because it allows for the use of long cables while reducing susceptibility to external noise, this would be a stereo cable as two channels of signal is used. A mono cable is where one signal or channel is used, and as such, is unbalanced.
A crossover is a device used in PA systems to enhance the sound of a multiple speaker set ups.
Crossovers work by taking an audio signal and splitting up the frequencies, sending certain frequencies to the desired output (ie separating bass frequencies from highs and mids).
Crossovers we sell are available in 2 and 3-ways. A 2-way crossover separates low-pass and high-pass frequencies, whereas a 3-way crossover separates low-pass, band-pass and high-pass frequencies meaning you have more control over the overall sound of your system when using multiple speakers.
You can get active and passive crossovers, we only sell ACTIVE ones (as passive ones are built into speakers). Crossovers connect between the mixer and the amplifier. These are then adjusted by hand (or by on screen pre-sets for digital ones) for the frequencies required for each amp and speaker. 

 Examples of crossovers in use are below,
2-way crossover 3-way crossover
Power Ratings: All of the speakers on our website are rated at 8 ohms and its RMS rating (continuous rating), not its peak rating. All the speakers we sell are at least capable of running at double the RMS value, but its not advised for long All of our amps are again rated in RMS values, but this time at 4 ohms.
Matching amps and speakers can be very confusing, with different manufacturers quoting different ratings for their products, and also how they perform, as a general guide, we advise doubling the rating of the speaker RMS to get the RMS rating per channel for the amp. For example, if a customer has bought a pair of 500 watt speakers, they are 250 watt RMS each, so 250 x 2 = 500 watts RMS per channel for the amplifier. 1200 watt speakers would be 600 watts RMS each – 600 x 2 = 1200 watts per channel RMS for the amp.
There are various different ways of calculating average power needed for a PA for a venue or party, either by room size or the amount of people. The amount of people in the room is probably the best way to calculate the size of the PA needed. Always advise if customers are buying a small speaker PA package (ie and amp and two speakers) that they’d need tripods to mount the speakers on to get the sound above everybody in the room.
As a good guide, as a general rule of thumb, I would advise approximately 100 watts RMS per 10 people. This guide line works very well and
personally I have been using this guide line myself for many years without never having inadequate or excessive volumes.
Up to 50 people: 500 watts RMS
Up to 100 people: 1000 watts RMS (1k)
Up to 150 people: 1500 watts RMS (1.5k) (2 tops and 2 subs advised)
Up to 200 people: 2000 watts RMS (2k) (2 tops and 2 subs advised).