The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 All  This Thread  Reviews  Gear Database  Gear for sale     Latest  Trending
Good vocal amp needed for small band rehearsals
Old 13th July 2019
Here for the gear

Good vocal amp needed for small band rehearsals

I have a Marshall AS 50R which I use as a vocal amp during band rehearsals, with a Sure SM58 connected to the XLR input.

Our line up is
Singer/Rhythm gtr
Lead gtr
Bass gtr

When I use it the Marshall at home myself it can sound terrific, but in our rehearsal room, a medium size living room, with the other band members, who are not very cooperative about playing quietly, I literally cannot hear myself sing and have to scream into the mic.
I tilt the amp up toward my face, to no avail.

I make recordings with a hand held device, (on a stand) and I can’t hear myself on them either.
I assume when the band kicks in my ears shut down, and I am looking for a better vocal amplifier, maybe one more specifically suited to the task.

We have recorded in a rather basic local studio, I was reluctant to turn the pa up too much as the others complained I was too loud, but no matter what where or how we record, the instruments sound as though they are close up to the mic but the singers always sound as though they are in the bath in the room next door!

The bass player uses a Carlsboro Cobra 90W combo, guitarist uses an Orange 30W valve combo unit, but both point them into the room and stand with their backs to them, as though on stage. I need something to match up to that.

I don’t understand how my friend’s Orange 30 can drown out vocals from my 50W Marshall, but it does.

What should I use, within a £300 budget? I have found the Roland CM-30 recommended, but at 30 watts, will it stand up to the other guys? Also found the Behringer B205. That is rated 150 watts, but why should there be so much difference in wattage for two amps that seem to be for the same purpose?
Old 13th July 2019
Your Marshall is a solid-state acoustic guitar amp and it can't put out nearly the volume that a 30-watt tube amp can. Folks around here who actually know the specifics of how these electronics work will be able to give you better information as to why, but a 30-watt tube amp will easily drown out a solid state amp up to maybe 100 watts or so (and of course the size and number of speakers is key to how much air is pushed, as well).

There should be plenty in your price range. If I were in your shoes, I would look at an RCF active PA speaker like this one. They're great. Alternatively, the Yamaha active speakers all work well. I would look at 10" or 12" speakers, and preferably put it on a stand so it's on ear level.

It sounds like your band gets LOUD. We can talk about how musicians need to have better dynamic control all day, but in the end you can only control your own actions, so... I hope you wear earplugs.
Old 13th July 2019
Lives for gear
JBL Eon 610 on a stand and pointed at your head.

Side remark... I don’t see from your post that you are playing with real musicians. If you can’t hear the vocal, THEY can’t hear the vocal. If the band is playing songs with any meaning, good musicians will make room for the vocal to be heard, and treat the vocal as a part they play to enhance, answer, or counter. Your people seem to have an very narrow interest, mostly focused on the power and volume of what they are doing individually. The overall presentation of the song doesn’t seem to have any importance to them.
I’m not much of a drummer, but the last time I rehearsed with a band, I bought low volume cymbals and drum mufflers to allow us to practice at a volume that was balanced and comfortable.
Your picture of the guitar and bass band members frying the back of their legs with volume and highs they can’t hear until it bounces in the room... that’s a sad common practice. If they took the same amp and put it in a stage-monitor orientation in front of them, they MIGHT turn down, but at least it would lessen their volume in your ears. And they would have a much clearer idea of exactly what they are playing.

Last edited by Bushman; 13th July 2019 at 05:21 PM.. Reason: Extra word removal.
Old 13th July 2019
Here for the gear

You're right, of course, but these guys are buddies, and where I am, away from the city, you have to take what you can get to an extent.
So yes, if I want a band to play sax with or practice singing blues and r'n'b, that isn't an hours drive away, I have to take on a challenge of playing with not very refined players and getting the best I can out of it, and them!
But I do feel that powerwise we are unbalanced and want to do what I can to address that.
Old 13th July 2019
Lives for gear

I’d look at a small PA system, you should be able to get something pretty cheap if you buy used. Guitar Center usually has some good used deals.

Something like this should work nice:
Old 13th July 2019
Gear Guru

as Bushman said, the "powered speaker" is the solution if you are not going for a full PA.

but if you are the lead singer, maybe you should own a PA? In my youth, that's what made you a lead singer - not the quality of your voice, but ownership of a PA!

there are little monitors called Hot Spots made by Galaxy (and Mackie and Behringer and others make similar) that are small enough to mount on a mic stand and can be set up inches from your face if you like. One of my audio production students was an adult working sax player and he got one of those for this funk band he was in. He had similar issues hearing himself and he said it really helped.

There are splitter boxes that you can run your mic into, that provide a split - one side going on to the PA and the other side going directly to your personal monitor. So the monitor is under your control, even at a gig where there is a soundman. And of course the smartest thing to do would be to use in-ears instead of speaker blasting at your head, as you could then block out all the drums and guitars and achieve your balance at a much lower overall level to your delicate eardrums.

Of course the rest of the band still can't hear you. But it sounds like they don't mind.

yes, if I want a band to play sax with or practice singing blues
if your band is not gigging, I can understand how 'rehearsal' becomes the place where people can finally "Rock Out" after a hard week at the Day Job. The more you actually gig, the more low-volume rehearsals make sense. IMO, I actually get more done at such rehearsals, I seem to remember it better, and am less wiped out at the end.

I have a setup at home for such rehearsals where all the amps are tiny, almost "toy", amps and I have those rubber sound-off pads on the drums. We can walk through almost any song, though most would feel we are not really well, you know...
Old 4 weeks ago
Gear Addict

I use the Yamaha dbr powered speakers myself and find them pretty versatile. There’s an eq curve switch on the back that has two settings, “main/Foh” and “monitor”. I find that in a listening environment where one setting isn’t cutting through enough, the other usually helps. I use it as a vocal monitor, as a keyboard amp as a main monitor for my audio interface and phone when practicing drums along to tracks. The variety of inputs on the back with their own volume pots is great so you can have a couple sources plugged in at once without needing an actual mixer. It’s pretty light and comfortable to transport with the molded plastic handle so you can take it home with you and use for other things in between your band practices.
Old 4 weeks ago
Lives for gear
loujudson's Avatar
I suggest QSC K8 or CV8 (cheaper but still good). These things gte pretty loud and sound better to me than JBLs. I use them for live monitors, as well as small room PA speakers.
Old 4 weeks ago
Gear Head

A Behringer 208d is within your budget. It should be loud enough to match the other gear, and it'll be better for vocals than a guitar amp.

If the band says you're too loud, turn down the volume.

Don't aim it at your ears. Keep the mic c!ose to your mouth, and the gain low, to avoid feedback.

. Charles

Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.

Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Forum Jump
Forum Jump