Thursday, March 14, 2013
Balanced and Unbalanced Cables Defined
Balanced electrical signals travel along 3 wires: a positive, a negative, and a ground. The positive and negative carry the same signal, just in opposite polarity to one another. Noises that may be picked up in the cable will usually be common to each leg. As long as the destination is balanced, the receiving device will flip the signal, bringing them back into polarity. This eliminates the noise by causing it to be out of phase. This is commonly referred to as Common Mode Rejection and is the primary reason balanced cables are best for long cable runs. TRS and XLR cables are made to send balanced audio from one balanced device to another balanced device.
Unbalanced cables are much simpler than balanced. However, they can easily fall victim to noise issues. Unbalanced lines should be used in shorter lengths, ideally 25 foot and under. This will go a long way in reducing any noise that could be carried with the signal into your gear. Instruments, like guitars. and their users vow they can tell a difference in the tone the longer the cable gets.
There are six primary cable connector types in the world of Pro Audio. XLR and TRS for balanced connections; Speakon, TS, RCA, and Banana Plugs for unbalanced connections. Here is a brief overview of each:
An XLR connector has positive, negative, and ground connections. They are primarily used for balanced line-level signals and for microphone signals. These are commonly used for connecting mics to mixers and for hooking up various outputs to powered speakers.
TRS is also referred to as Tip, Ring, Sleeve. It has the same appearance as your standard 1/4″ and 1/8″ plugs. The difference is that it has an extra ring on the plug. TRS cables are two conductor plus a ground. Commonly used to connect balanced equipment and for running left and right mono signals to stereo headphones. These will also be located on Y cables for use in mixer insert jacks when the signal is sent out in one wire and comes back thru another wire.
Speakon connectors are used to carry amplified signals. They are most commonly used to connect power amplifiers to PA speakers, Monitors, and Subwoofers in studio or on stage. They have a unique locking feature that tend to make them a more attractive option than the 1/4″ TS connection. It should be noted that is recommended to never use an instrument cable to connect an amplifier to a speaker.
TS is also referred to as Tip, Sleeve. It is the universal name for specific type of 1/8″ or 1/4″ connector meant for a two conductor unbalanced operation. Only one insulator ring separates the tip and the sleeve. The tip carries the signal and the sleeve is where the ground is connected. These cables are best used as guitar or line level instrument cables.
Banana plugs are an electrical conductor made to connect audio wires (speaker wires) to the binding posts on the back of power amplifiers, speakers, or simply to a banana jack. These banana jacks are most often found at the end of a binding post receptacle on power amplifiers and some speakers.
RCA is the term most commonly used when referring to phono connectors used to connect consumer stereo gear. You will usually see CD outputs or inputs using these RCA connections. RCA connectors are also used in the digital audio world for connections such as S/PDIF, but are still a staple in the pro audio world.
Wednesday, November 07, 2012
There has been so much going on here at Seismic Audio! We have been launching new products, promoting our contests, developing new products….too much to list. We are always trying to keep you guys, our fans and friends, in the loop about everything that develops here at Seismic. Unfortunately, we do not always reach as many of you as we would like. Therefore, we plan to start doing a much better job of managing our blog and dubbing it “The Seismic Audio Experience“. We know you guys are busy and don’t have time to search the internet up and down to find the info you are looking for. We will try and create a clear link to it on our homepage to ensure you guys are always in the loop. Since it has been so long since we have posted, let us catch you up on all the exciting things happening at Seismic Audio!
We are kicking off the holiday season early and running a Review Contest for a chance to win a $500 Gift Card from Seismic Audio. Simply, write a product review on our website or Amazon and be entered for a chance to win a $500 Gift card from Seismic Audio. The more reviews you write, the more chances you have to win. Click on the link Review Contest for complete rules and Terms and Conditions!
Also, just in time for the holidays, we are rolling out the Seismic Audio Gift Certificate! It is the perfect gift idea for the musician in your life! We know how hard it can be to choose the right speaker, cable, or accessory when buying for someone. It is ideal for Christmas, birthdays, or for one of those just because occasions. You can select the amount you want the card to be good for and present it to your musician to redeem it on the Seismic Audio product of their choosing. Get one today and never have to worry again whether or not you have purchased that item they really want!
Several new products have been introduced over the last month or so. We have new Guitar Cabs, 150 foot Snake Cables, Snake Cables on a Reel, Colored Mic Screens, several new cables, and an entire line of 1/8″ and mobile type cables. We also have launched several new stands to accomodate iPhones, iPads, and other tablet and mobile devices. These can be found on our website www.seismicaudiospeakers.com. First, we would like to introduce you to a couple of the new items!
If you are looking for big cabinet sound in a small cabinet, look no further! You have found it! This cabinet gives you BIG sound in a small package! The Rift 46G cabinet delivers the sound usually associated with a much larger cabinet, without the weight of a 412 guitar or 410 bass rig. This cabinet is perfect for practicing, small gigs, and recording purposes. Here is the kicker….The Rift 46G can be used as a bass cab as well! That is right! We said it and put it in print! The Rift 46G is awesome for low volume applications as well. It delivers for both! Equipped With four Quake 6” speakers, the SA-Rift_46G can hang with bass cabs much larger while still giving you plenty of full range articulation and attack. At 250 Watts RMS, its smaller profile makes it an excellent cab for the gigging musician who doesn’t have the room for a bigger cab but doesn’t want to sacrifice their sound for the real estate.
Snake Cables on a Reel are designed to make life a little easier in any venue. This snake is road ready with 22 gauge wires and ready for everyday gigs. Reels make tear down and set up a lot smoother and faster when going from gig to gig or club to club. XLR Connectors on the returns make this snake cable fit right in with professional power amps and mixing consoles without the need for converters or couplers. Performance and convenience all rolled into one!
OTHER SEISMIC NEWS
There are many new and exciting things happening at SA! We are about ready to launch a new SA Rewards Program. This will essentially allow you to accumulate points for the products you purchase from SA! You will be able to accumulate these points and redeem them for the product of your choosing. We will have more info on this as we get closer to the launch date!
Later this month, we will be launching a new line of Guitar Speakers! These will be called the Bedrock Series. We are rather excited and proud of these speakers. We are of the opinion that they sound as good if not better than the World Class speakers that musicians covet.
Until next time, remember to visit our website and take advantage of the Coupon Codes we have going right now! Just another opportunity to save even more money! As always, we value your patronage and your feedback! Rock On!
Tuesday, May 01, 2012
“What amp do I need to power these speakers?” This is another frequently asked question we receive when customers are buying PA speakers. It can be a complicated answer. The amp must have the correct amount of power and the correct features for your PA system. Here is a guide that may help in your endeavor to find the correct power amp.
As a general rule, you should select a power amp that has a power output of 1.5 RMS that of the speaker’s RMS rating. For example, if you have an 8 ohm speaker with an RMS rating of 400 watts, then you would need an amplifier that can produce 600 watts RMS into an 8 ohm load. In the event you have a stereo pair of speakers, you would need an amp that is can produce 600 watts RMS per channel into 8 ohms.
Seismic Audio PA Speakers are high quality and can take brief peaks greater than its power rating if the amps can transfer those temporary peaks without distortion. Therefore, we recommend taking advantage of an amp with extra headroom (1.5 X the power rating). This will guarantee that only undistorted power reaches your speakers. Some amps are made to accommodate additional headroom. These particular amps cleanly reproduce those brief outputs that exceed the power rating. If you decide to go with one of these amps, just be sure that it has an output rating, at least 1.5 x the RMS rating of the speaker.
Choosing an amp with the correct power rating is essential to high quality sound. You should never run an amp when the power rating is less than the RMS of a speaker as this could cause the amp to start clipping. The speakers in a sound systems can be damaged by running an amp without the proper power rating. It will usually result in constant distortion and can even blow your speakers.
We realize that all of this information can be overwhelming. If you have any questions or concerns, you should always call the Seismic Audio Technical Department at 901-363-6030 x1. We will gladly assist you in your decision of which power amp best fits your needs.
Thursday, April 19, 2012
Why is my PA Speaker not working?
This is one of the most common questions fielded by our Technical guys during the day! Of course there are many possible reasons why, but one of the first avenues of investigation should be to check your speaker to see if you have blown it. We understand that calling in and speaking with someone in tech support can sometimes be a hassle. Therefore, we wanted to publish a quick step by step tutorial of how you can check it yourself and confirm or eliminate this as the problem.
1. These first thing you will need to do is to carefully remove the speaker from the cabinet and inspect the spider to verify that it is connected to the basket contiguously with no separation. (The spider is the suspension between the back of the cone and the basket, right above the magnet).
2. Next, you will need to place a finger and a thumb from each hand around the dust cover in the center of the cone on the front of the speaker. Press down lightly! Allow the voice coil to move down with the pressure, just a quarter of an inch or so, and then rebound with no pressure. This movement should be smooth without any noticeable interference between the moving parts. If you hear any noise other than air movement, then there is reason for concern.
3. The third and final test involves the use of a 9 volt battery. Obtain a 9 volt battery. The terminals on the 9 volt battery line up with the terminals on the back of the speaker. Touch the terminals on the battery to the terminals on the speaker. The speaker should move at least 1/8″ . If it does move without any ‘scrubbing’ noise, the speaker is good. If it does not move or does move accompanied by a ‘scrubbing’ noise, then you have a blown speaker.
This is the most effective and quickest way to tell whether or not an audio event has caused your speaker to blow. Again, it is one of the most common questions we take in the Seismic Audio Speakers tech department. We thought maybe you all would find it useful in the event you were having issues with your PA speakers. As always, we welcome you to call us and we will do anything to help you and get you the sound you want.
Wednesday, December 14, 2011
Whether you’re doing a traditional, small Nativity pageant or a large production with the whole shebang, you’ve probably got some things to address:
1. Get a volunteer: A big production is a good deal more than your usual Sunday service. Recruit a couple of extra tech volunteers to help you.
2. Test everything. Twice: Something you might not think about is that your church’s Christmas production is a live theater performance, with all of the potential for things to go wrong. Be sure you’re at each rehearsal leading up to the performance so can test your equipment, especially if you’ve purchased any new PA speakers or equipment for the production.
3. Check your cables: Do you have enough audio cables? Can everything go where it needs to go? This is a good time to pick up any extra audio cables you may be missing.
4. Do things need to be moved? Your usual Sunday setup might need to be switched around. We don’t think floor monitors were at the Nativity. You may want to consider hiding certain sound equipment in strategic locations to get a more authentic look.
5. Break it all down: After the set is struck and everything is done, hold a meeting to go over what went wrong and what went right. Did you need an extra church PA speaker or monitor? Make preparations to order any new PA system products in the new year.
6. Have fun! Christmas is a joyful time. Take time to enjoy the wonder of the season and to enjoy the fun of putting together a truly great Christmas production.
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Although I’ve been going to church my entire life and sang in many a church choir, I had no idea how important church PA speakers were to worship until I began working here.
1. Contemporary Worship Services: Congregations will only hear every note with church PA speakers. Many church buildings suffer from poor acoustics, and it is the PA speakers that ensure songs and sermons reach every pew.
2. Traditional Hymns: I grew up singing “Amazing Grace,” and little did I know that my church probably had PA speakers to make our choir heard throughout the sanctuary (though I’m not sure any amount of sound reinforcement would have made us sing on tune). In addition to PA speakers, many congregations use monitors so that the performer can hear themselves over other sounds.
3. From the pulpit: How does your pastor make each sermon sound fantastic? He has a good microphone and some fantastic PA speakers.
Because Seismic Audio Speakers are well-priced, they are more affordable for budget-conscious congregations than name-brand speakers. Best of all, they are just as good.
Thursday, October 06, 2011
October may be spooky, but don’t be afraid of 10% off sitewide! Just use code SPOOKY10. If you like to play music and like to save, these savings will make you scream! The sale ends October 31, 2011.
Save on everything: PA speakers, church PA speakers, guitar cabinets, monitors and more!
Friday, August 19, 2011
Make it a church festival to remember with great quality DJ speakers from Seismic Audio. Church festivals are always filled with sound, whether from dance music, karaoke sets and announcements. For your churches next festival get the loudest, clearest sounding PA speakers for low cost at Seismic Audio. If you’re looking for inexpensive audio equipment you’ve come to the right place. Seismic Audio has everything you need for great sounding church festival.
Keep those church members happy with great sounding PA speakers for all of your church festivals. Shop PA speakers ranging in sizes from 8″ to 15″, as well as accessories and cables. Once you choose our amazing quality PA speakers to help with your church festival, all you’ll need to provide is the perfect play list festival music. Seismic Audio offers a great selection of PA speakers, Dual Speakers, Molded Speakers and Powered speakers. If you have damaged or failing speakers, you can also find replacement speakers. Hurry up and find all the best Audio equipment. With PA speakers from Seismic Audio, you’ll have the very best church festival, guaranteed.
Add extra flair and fun to church festivals with Audio equipment from Seismic Audio.