Top 5 Powered Speakers for Live Bands

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You could say that without the best-powered speakers, a live band may not be so alive. Everyone knows that without speakers, a live performance is basically just a few people singing to themselves with an audience staring on clueless.

The best live performances are engaging, enthralling, and enchanting. The quality of a live performance is not dependent on just the lyrics of the song, the beats or the voice of the singer, it is also dependent on the output from the speakers. To get the best output and the best audience reach, you need the best-powered speakers. But which speakers are the best-powered speakers for a live band.

In the subsequent paragraphs of this article, we examine some of the best-powered speakers for a live band, their ratings, their sensitivity, their clarity, and other important features.

 

Yamaha DBR10 700-Watt Powered Speaker

 

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Starting our list is Yamaha DBR10 700-Watt Powered Speaker. The average speaker has a sound pressure level (SPL) of 80 – 90 dB and this rating define how sensitive the speaker is. The Yamaha DBR10 has an SPL of up to 129 dB so you can expect a sensitivity far above average. At this SPL value, the Yamaha DBR10 will give you an output as loud the sound of a car horn.

This speaker can handle a maximum power of 1000 watts at an instant but can take up to 700 watts for longer periods. With this power rating and sound pressure level, the Yamaha DBR10 is loud enough to serve a room containing between 100 – 200 people.

The Yamaha DBR10 is relatively lightweight and portable. Its dimensions are as follows: 15.1 x 15.9 x 22.9 inches. This means it is about 1.2 times the size of a car battery. It also weighs about 31 pounds which is about the weight of a small car battery. So, you should only imagine carrying something about 1.2 times the size of a car battery but something weighing less.

 

The speaker’s cabinet is compact enough to preserve the quality of the bass sound. However, it is made from a durable lightweight plastic which is resistant to impact. So you have something that would not easily get damaged and you have a material that would not make you worry about it being weighty. The grille is made from steel and this offers more durability to the overall structure of the cabinet. The cabinet also has an ergonomic handle by the side which allows for easy handling and transportation.

This speaker has a tuning frequency between 55 Hz – 20 kHz (-10 dB). With the lower frequency rating of 55Hz, you get a clean and deep bass output. The higher frequency rating (20 kHz) is the maximum for treble and with this, the speaker can support the broadest range of treble in different sounds. The tolerance (-10 dB) is a bit higher than average, but this does not affect the distinction of the tones in the output too much.

The Yamaha DBR10 also features an on-board 2 channel mixer; the first channel has a combo jack for XLR & TRS input while the second channel has the XLR & TRS combo jack and an RCA jack. But it does not support Bluetooth.

Pros

  • Deep bass frequency
  • Portable and lightweight
  • High sound pressure level

Cons

  • No support for Bluetooth

Check on Amazon

 

JBL EON610 Portable 10″ 2-Way Multipurpose Self-Powered Sound Reinforcement

 

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The JBL EON610 Portable 10″ 2-Way Multipurpose Self-Powered Sound Reinforcement is a 10-inch speaker. There are 2 modifications of the EON 610 named JBL EON612 (12-inch speaker) and JBL EON15 (15-inch speaker). It has an SPL of up to 124 dB which is way above the output of the average speaker. You can expect an output even more sensitive than the sensitivity of the sound from a car horn.

The JBL EON610 can handle a peak power of 1000 watts but it runs on a continuous power of 500 watts. A combination of this power and sound pressure level makes this speaker suitable for a room containing as many as 150 people.

The JBL EON610 is portable and lightweight too. It has an approximate length of 22 inches, a width of 13 inches, and a height of 11 inches. This is roughly 1.5 times the size of the average car battery. Of course, even with it being 1.5 times the size of a car battery, it does not weigh that much at all. It weighs about 26 pounds which is less than the weight of a small car battery.

 

The cabinet of the JBL EON610 is made from materials that do not alter the bass significantly. The material also offers durability and the cabinet has 2 ergonomic handles on each side. These handles make carrying the speaker a breeze. The overall design of the cabinet is attractive and it allows easy stacking on stage.

This speaker has a frequency response between 60 Hz and 20 kHz. With the lower level frequency set at 60 Hz, the bass from the JBL EON610 is pretty deep and rich. The 20 kHz means that you get a treble output up to the maximum – no treble sound goes unnoticed. With a tolerance of -/+ 3 dB, you can expect to hear most of the tones distinctly.

It can be controlled through Bluetooth using iOS & Android Bluetooth devices. JBL EON610 has a coverage of up to 110°, it has 2 channels with XLR ¼”, and 1 XLR loop-thru. With the 2 channels, you can connect as many as 2 microphones and with the XLR loop thru you can send sounds out to other sources.

Pros

  • Can be controlled with Bluetooth devices
  • Portable and lightweight
  • High sound pressure level

Cons

  • Does not support Bluetooth streaming

Check on Amazon

 

Alto Professional TS308

 

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Next in line is the Alto Professional TS308. This powered speaker has a sound pressure level as high as 129 decibels. At this SPL, the sensitivity of the speaker is higher than the average. The speaker can go as loud as the threshold of discomfort and this is an indication of how loud the speaker can go. This sound pressure level also means that the speaker offers uncommon clarity.

Alto Professional TS308 has an amplifier that can handle up to 2000 watts at an instant but a continuous power of 1000 watts. At 2000 watts, the high-frequency unit is at 700 watts while the low frequency operates at 1300 watts. At a continuous power of 1000 watts, the high-frequency unit does 350 watts while the low frequency does 650 watts. The peak power and the continuous power of the Alto Professional TS308 is higher than that of the other 2 speakers. You can imagine the quality of sound that will be produced by a 1000-watt speaker with a maximum SPL of 129 dB – loud, crisp, and clear.

The Alto Professional TS308 is even more portable and lighter than the aforementioned speakers. It weighs 24.4 pounds; since we have been comparing the weights of the speakers with the weights of small car batteries, it weighs way less than a small car battery. The speaker has a length of 17.1 inches, a width of 9.6 inches, and a height of 10.1 inches which is about 1.2 times the size of a car battery.

 

The cabinet of the Alto Professional TS308 is designed with a durable material which makes it able to withstand long road trips and other minor impacts. It uses a propylene enclosure and although the material is light, it ensures preservation ad reinforcement of sound with no reduction in the bass. The speaker is shaped to allow easy setup on stages; it also has space with which it can be mounted on the wall and a pole. It has 2 ergonomic handles on each side that allows it to be carried easily.

The frequency response between 62 Hz and 20 kHz. This means great bass and great treble and with a tolerance of +/- 3dB, the tones are distinct. It has 2 channels with XLR ¼ inch input for microphones and lines. It also has 1 XLR link output but no support for Bluetooth.

Pros

  • High power capacity
  • Portable and lightweight
  • Loud, clear, and sensitive

Cons

  • No support for Bluetooth

Check on Amazon

 

QSC K10.2 Active 10″ Powered 2000 Watt Loudspeaker

 

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Next, we have the sleek QSC K10.2 Active 10″ Powered Loudspeaker. The QSC K10.2 Active 10″ Powered Loudspeaker is a 10-inch speaker with an SPL that peaks at 130 decibels. At this sensitivity, this powered speaker can go as loud as the threshold of comfort.

The speaker uses a class D amplifier with the capacity to handle a peak power of 2000 watts and a continuous power of 1,012 watts. A combination of an SPL of 130 dB and this power ratings can only produce clear, loud, crisp, and distinct sounds. While QSC K10.2 Active has similar peak power as the Alto Professional TS308, QSC K10.2 has a slightly higher continuous power rating. This means that, on the average, the QSC K10.2 will have a slightly better output.

This speaker measures 23 inches in length, 16 inches in width, and 17 inches in height. These dimensions are about the same as the JBL EON610 but slightly higher. The QSC K10.2 active weighs 32 pounds which is about the size of the average car battery. Relatively, this speaker is portable and not too heavy.

 

The cabinet is designed with one ergonomic hand but considering the weight, you get the feeling 2 handles may have been better. With 2 handles, two people would easily carry it together. The speaker is made to be such that it can be mounted on walls, on trusses, and it can be placed on a pole. This makes it suitable to be used in many situations. The design of the speaker gives it coverage of up to 105°. The cabinet is made from impact-resistant ABS so you can be assured it is durable.

The depth of the bass produced from the QSC K10.2 Active is even deeper than that produced from the Yamaha DBR10; it has a lower frequency range of 50 Hz. Like all other speakers examined so far, this also has a maximum frequency level of 20 kHz so you do not have to bother about hearing the trebles.

Although this speaker is not Bluetooth enabled, it has more jacks than usual. It has two XLR ¼” combo jack, two XLR loop thru, two XLR mix, and one 3.5 mm TRS jack.

Pros

  • High amplifier power capacity
  • Portable and lightweight
  • High sensitivity and clarity

Cons

  • No support for Bluetooth
  • Quite expensive

Check on Amazon

 

EV Electro-Voice ZLX-15P Powered Active 15″ 2-way DJ PA Speakers

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Last on the list is EV Electro-Voice ZLX-15P Powered Active 15″ 2-way DJ PA Speakers. At 15 inches, it has the largest speaker area on this list. It has a sound pressure level of 127 dB, so you can expect an output that is loud, clear, and audible.

It has a power rating of up to 1000 watts. At an SPL of 127 dB and with the amplifier consuming about 1000 watts, you can definitely expect quality when the speaker roars to life. This speaker can serve a room of up to 200 people.

While it is one of the smallest speakers on this list in terms of dimensions, it is the heaviest on the list. It weighs up to 37 pounds and has the following dimensions: 17 x 15 x 27 inches.

The cabinet is made from propylene which is light yet durable. While propylene is not very dense, it does little to negatively alter the bass. The speaker has one ergonomic handle and can be mounted on a pole or placed on the stage floor. The grill is made from steel coated with black power and this offers some durability to the overall structure.

 

The frequency response spans between 55 Hz – 18 kHz. While the low-level frequency offers bass as deep as that from the Yamaha DBR10, the high-level frequency does not reach the maximum of 20 kHz. However, you will still get enough treble output to satisfy you.

The speaker has an LCD display at the back for setting it up. It also has a LED light in front, which indicates when the speaker is on or off. It has two XLR/TRS combo jack, one XLR link output, and one 3.5 mm jack. It has no support for Bluetooth.

Pros

  • Portable
  • Deep bass output
  • High sensitivity and clarity

Cons

  • No support for Bluetooth
  • Quite expensive
  • Treble frequency not maximum

Check on Amazon

 

Conclusion

The features that make the best-powered speakers for a live band include the power ratings, the sound pressure level, the frequency response, and the cabinet material. The power and sound pressure level give an indication of the loudness and clarity of the output. The frequency response will indicate the quality and range of bass & treble produced by the speaker while the cabinet material usually affects only the output of the bass.

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