Reader Jon Baker writes: “I’m relatively new to the digital DJing scene, and as such haven’t got my own PA system yet, although I plan on investing in one shortly.
“I tend to play predominately music which is very bass-heavy, yet only have a budget of around £350 for a pair of preferably powered PA speakers (poor student times). I usually only play gigs in small to medium sized venues. As my music is so bass-heavy, would it really sound OK on such a budget system, ie one within my price range, or should I wait considerably longer and purchase a powered sub at the same time? Any views appreciated.”
Digital DJ Tips says:
It’s true that you can get away without one. Speaker positioning is a real essential, and get this right and even with a modest PA it is possible to cover a small area – ie your dancefloor – reasonably effectively.
Bass is not very directional, so the full ‘thump’ of a sub-woofer will carry throughout a venue.
However, especially when you haven’t got much raw power to spare, having the extra warmth in the bass can make all the difference.
Bass is not very directional, so the full ‘thump’ of you sub-woofer will carry throughout a venue, then you can use your mid/top cabinets to provide the clarity and fill the sound in where it matters most (again, decent positioning will cover your dancefloor).
This way, a modest PA can actually just about suffice in situations where a two-speaker PA without the extra bass wouldn’t.
For weddings and such? Definitely not worth it. For bass-heavy music like you play? I’d instinctively say it’s worth having the sub.
Over to you: Should Jon add extra bass in the form of a powered sub, or invest in a sub-less PA and maybe add it later? Have you done one or the other? What was your experience? Please let us know in the comments.
Want to escape the bedroom and play in public - fast?
Our 1000s-selling How To Digital DJ Fast video course shows you how.
Learn to DJ Free - email course plus bonus PDF book
Sign up for our weekly email course for beginners now...
Trouble choosing a controller? Visit the web's #1 guide!
DJ Controllers: The Ultimate Buyer’s Guide 2013.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.