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Battery Powered Sound Systems  (Read 4378 times)
Chris Arveson
« on: August 17, 2008, 09:50:24 pm »

Howdy all!

As I am preparing for my Christmas show in Moscow, I am re-examining my sound system. It's pretty basic, an mp3 player plugged into a Pignose Lil P.A. portable amp. This critter has the huge benefit of being fairly small, it doesn't take up too much room in my suitcase, and with all the C-cell batteries weighs a total of 6 pounds!

It seems a little heavy on the bass side, but that may not be a problem this year, I have started using Adobe Audition for my recording and mixing and am very impressed with the results so far. If I increase the highs and mid-ranges just a little bit, I should be able to compensate for the overdone bass. (fortunately I have a old-boy rock musician who is glad to give a critical ear and helpful hints in this area)

In most of the places we perform, I am able to use their stereo with a cd that I have ready. This is helpful because they can really crank that sucker up loud for everyone to hear clearly, in spite of the usually bad acoustics.

One possibility with my amp is to get another, and run a splitter out of the mp3 player. That way I can turn the two of them down a little, and get more volume with no distortion.

BUT . . . I'm always wondering if there is anything else out there. I do my googling, but there is such a useful crowd around here, someone may know things that I can't easily find. Sometimes it's just a matter of knowing enough to look for the right things.

I'm looking for volume, light weight and no cord. I don't have a Russian extension cord, and don't want to haul a heavy cord back and forth across the continents. With fuel costs and excess baggage charges, this is REALLY important now. Besides, Russian building codes don't seem to include much in the way of wall outlets, so who knows how long the cord would have to be!

If I get a second Pignose, that would take the total weight up to just under 13 pounds, so that would pretty much be my weight limit on any other system. Money is always an issue, but the other factors are the most important.

Anybody know of such a miraculous machine out there?
gompie
« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2008, 12:46:06 am »

a show in Moscow it is going to be a great expierence, I think. What kind of christmas show are you going to give there? How many places are you visiting?
Chris Arveson
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2008, 05:01:51 am »

a show in Moscow it is going to be a great expierence, I think. What kind of christmas show are you going to give there? How many places are you visiting?

The show does not have an explicit Christmas theme. It is a Russian version of Pinnochio, written by Aleksei Tolstoy. I usually start the show with a pair of the puppets introducing the show and doing a wrap-up, which will speak briefly of the wonderful gift God has given us at Christmas. Since an important event in this story is when the character, Tortila the tortoise, gives a golden key to the main character which turns out to be the "salvation" of the star and his friends, the tie-in will not be strained at all. Really, the main point of doing the show is just for providing some joy to the kids we visit.

I usually do seven performances in the orphanages that we visit. We are not the most polished of puppeteers, because I recruit my cast members from the members of the team I am traveling with. Most of them have never had any puppet experience before. Then, too, since most of them don't understand a word of Russian, they can have difficulty with the lip-synching, but after a little practice, it usually comes together pretty well.

I get twelve tons of fun out of it, and that's just for the performances! The fun of planning, constructing, etc. is gravy on top!
Billy D. Fuller
« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2008, 05:53:13 am »

I'm pretty good at searching things out.................... Is the electrical wiring or should I say the logs like they are in the USA. I found this little portable amp. that says it is the size of a gallon paint can, runs on recharble batteries. Comes with charger and can be recharge on sight.

http://www.guitarsam.com/catalog3/miniamps.htm

Is this something close to what you are looking for so I can have a idea of what I'm searching for.

Billy D.
Chris Arveson
« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2008, 06:57:24 am »

Billy,

You're a lot better than pretty good at searching things out! I will have to check these out a little, to check their power and all that, but I'm loving that there are adjustments possible to bass and treble and all that. I'm not telling you to keep searching, and I'm not telling you to stop. I never saw these Fender amps before, so I'm getting excited about what might be out there!

Thanks for the help!

Chris <><

UPDATE: The Fender Amp Can is the kind of thing I'm looking for, I think. The other two you pointed me toward would sound quiet in a closet. The Amp Can puts out 15 watts RMS, which is 50% higher than the Pignose I have. That may just be the amount of power I am looking for. The thirteen pound weight is pretty much the upper limit. I can find it online for the same price as a second Pignose, so it has a lot going for it. If there is anything else in the same class, it would be good to look at.

Thanks Again!
« Last Edit: August 18, 2008, 08:09:40 am by carveson »
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