View Full Version : Power Voice Speakers
09-27-2003, 12:49 AM
I got a pair of PVS (Power Voice Systems) speakers; they are 18" 3-way, and are supposedly rated 450w/8ohms. They are 84 pounds heavy. I purchased them from a semi-pro audio store, i.e., they sell both consumer/home stereo and pro gear, including the big names like QSC, Crest, etc.
First question: Anyone heard these speakers or have them? (They also come with the 12" and 15" driver boxes.)
Next question: Can I change/upgrade the tweeters and the horn; if so, which brand/type would you recommend for smooth/clear sounding mids and highs?
These speakers come with a rectangular horn/lens in the middle, and an array of 4-Piezo tweeters on the top row.
The problem is that the horn and tweeters sound very-very harsh, even after eq'ing them down.
The woofer, however, sounds very good, powerful, tight and deep. In the store, they were demo'ed with the QSC PLX-3002, just one in a large room ,and you could feel the bass all over. The highs, loud but annoying.
I opened up the side of the box to take a peak inside: All the wires are very thin and the crossover box looks very flimsy and cheap. :( However, the magnet in back of the woofer is very wide and thick.
I would like to upgrade these speakers by replacing the tweeters, horn driver, wiring and crossover with better quality and sounding ones. I think by doing this, I should end up with some decent sounding speakers. Of course, nothing close to the top-line gear discussed here, but, just decent sounding, and good enough for small-medium size venues.
F.Y.I., I paid $550.00 for the pair. (Of course, the salesman insisted that they sell for $325 a piece, but he gave me famous "break" in price.)
Could you please help with suggestions as to which tweeters and horn drivers I should get, and how to go about replacing the wiring and the crossover. I need as much help and instructions, if possible, since I have never done this type of work on speakers before. (Or, should I find a speaker repair shop and let them do the work?)
Thanks for your help.
09-27-2003, 09:23 AM
Just curious .... if you didn't like the sound of the 'highs' in these cabinets, why did you buy them? You just paid for a product that you're obviously not happy with so take them back. IMHO, any cabinet that uses piezos to provide highs, throws up a bright RED FLAG that says no way will these end up in my system. Piezos are generally used in the 'cheaper, low-end' PA cabinets. At $325 per cabinet, you could've done better give or take a few bucks.
09-27-2003, 09:46 AM
Sounds like you just bought some really expensive wooden boxes.
Quick... take them back for a refund/trade if you can!!! TRY REALLY HARD TO GET SOMETHING ELSE.
If you want to spend extra money to fix brand new speakers, then you might as well trade them in for more expensive ones that work right out of the box.
And if it is too late for some reason... maybe someone will have some advice for you. But, be aware you're probably going to have to change the crossover and wiring depending on what other speakers you go for.
09-27-2003, 02:03 PM
Hi NickyB and CJ,
Good questions and comments - make sense.
Here is what happened:
I needed to get bigger/louder sounding speakers for a gig at short notice. At that time, I did not have the bucks to get high-quality speakers. I knew that I was taking a (foolish) chance, but thought I could go for them, then try to tame the highs with my Mojo EQ. Also, since the low end really sounded good, and the speakers have a nice sleek look, I went for it. So, from the biggining - at the time of purchase, I was already thinking about upgrading/changing the horn driver and tweeters. Futhermore, since I saw the speakers were demo'ed with the QSC PLX 3002 (one of the amps recommended on this Board), and the low end sounded really good, I felt I could take the chance, knowing that I will be upgrading the highs at a later time, and also since I had limited funds. I was also aware about, "you get what you pay for", but $275 for a 3-way / 18" box, presented during a crunch time and needing a quick solution, was certainly a calculated risk, which I took.
The store has a 30-days return policy, which I cannot use since I have the speakers for a longer time.
I am now stuck with these speakers, and would like to upgrade to better highs, wiring and crossover. I would greatly appreciate any help/advise
to get this done, the best/safest way, at the lowest cost, if possible.
09-27-2003, 02:06 PM
I fully agree with CJ. First priority - ask the vendor for an exchange, especially if it's been less than 30 days since your purchase and the speakers are in resaleable condition. Tell the salesperson why you want the exchange/credit. If it's been less than a month, you've been nice, the speaks are mint, and he *still* won't play ball with you, then let him know that you will be telling everyone you know about what a great shopping experience you've had.
BTW - Unless it looks like a single strand of copper in a stir straw, don't be too disturbed by the internal wiring looking thin. The internal wiring on my nice JBL speakers is thin, too. You'll find thin internal wiring in just about every cabinet. The wire is going over such a short distance from the crossover to the woofer, mid, and tweeter that you don't suffer by having a thin gauge cable for that run.
09-27-2003, 02:22 PM
Posted my reply at the same time you made your update...
Sorry to hear about the troubles. Way back when, I used resistors in series with the piezos and I think that kept them from getting ultrasonic. Don't ever expect those speakers to ever sound really good though.
Because of the shape and size of the piezo mid and the bullet tweeters, you won't find a "conventional" solution that will adequately fit your needs.
DJ ANKUR PAL
09-27-2003, 02:48 PM
I posted a REALLY long reply this morning, until an upload of an attachment froze my computer and it all went down the drain.
In summary, many different types of manufacturers use the same basic box config to make speakers. Basically, I've owned a pair of speakers probably similar to yours, TO START OFF DJING WITH.
I have since then upgraded to professional speakers over the years.
Nothing you do to those boxes will make them sound better, nothing at all. As Polar said, the tweeters and horn are ONLY used in these crap boxes, which means you won't be able to take them out and put in a better sounding tweeter or horn.
As for speaker woofers, sure there are really good ones on the market, and you can get a great one, but putting it in a crapbox would only be foolish since you won't be taking full advantage of a good speaker. I mean say you buy a good woofer, you put it in the box. It won't be used to it's maximum potential, just because speaker boxes have to have certain dimensions to make best use of a woofer. The speaker boxes you are speaking of, simply aren't constructed to make the best use of woofers, OTHER than the ones provided in the box itself when you bought it. Also, you'll need a better internal crossover, and at the same time you'll have a hard time replacing tweeters and the horn as noted above.
They're really not worth spending any more money or time on.
Use them for mediocre gigs, and make sure you don't blow them by pushing too much bass or power into them (they are after all, crapboxes, and they will blow). I've had a pair of dual 15's for maybe 2-3 years, and I can totally relate to any problem or question you may have regarding your box. Feel free to PM me.
But dont waste your time and energy, and money, on trying to make these things sound better.
I've seen those Single 10" or 12" speakers that are professional, sound a helluva lot better and outperform your 18" 3 way box and my dual 15's.
Save up, and buy the real thing.
09-27-2003, 04:23 PM
Too bad you're past the 30 days.
That Resistor idea sounds pretty good...
Also, since it's past the 30 days, you may still be able to get MOST of your money out of a trade. It seems like every local dealer around here is willing to trade for newer equipment. It means you'll need to come up with some $$$, but you'll get what you want.
There are plenty of great posts on Professional brand speakers. Believe me, you'll have the biggest smile on your face when you buy a set that sounds good without any modification. Search the Gear Board for lots of great recommendations on speakers.
If you paid $275/speaker, maybe they'll give you $200/speaker in trade towards one of the pro speakers they carry. For that matter, you may be able to trade them at any music store in your area--not just the one you bought them from.
For $550/pair you should've been able to buy 15" speakers that are fantastic for up to 250-300 people parties/weddings from ANY of the PRO speaker companies. And for a little more money, you can get even better/bigger speakers that will handle even more power, or get a set of 18" subs to add to your 15" mains.
Good luck, I hope it works out for you! 8)
09-27-2003, 05:54 PM
Thanks guys for your feedback/help.
I will go back to the store to see if I can workout some type of trade-in deal, when I get the extra cash for something better. If not possible, I'll just hold on to them for small parties, as suggested, and try adjusting the settings on my Mojo EQ (which is a great EQ by the way) to smooth-out the highs, as much as possible.
(I do recall the day of the purchase, I was feeling pressured by the short notice of the gig - and wanting to do my best for everything to turn-out perfect, as I did not want to let down the person who recommended me. I was tense, had headache all day, and obviously made the wrong decision as a result. I should have just used my one and only old set - which consists of the Community CSX-35 small two-way, and the MTX PWRS15 sub. Usually, I keep my "cool" and try to make commonsense decisions - within my limits. Don't know if anyone else felt this type of pressure, and same tense experience before.)
BTW, the party turned out O.K., I think. No one complained about the ear-piercing highs. Maybe because there was a lot of speeches and jokes been told, and the dance music part was at the end, which was only 2-hours at the most. It was a birthday party, middle-age group,
folks were friendly and all in a good mood. I also got a tip at the end, so perhaps, it was not all that bad as I felt it was.
I was just on the phone with a friend, while writing this response, and he suggested replacing the horn driver and the tweeters with Selenium model, which he said is smooth sounding. Any thoughts on this?
Thanks again for all your help.
DJ ANKUR PAL
09-27-2003, 07:01 PM
I think a few things:
1. Don't go taking gigs when you need to purchase gear just for them.
2. If your highs were ear piercing, then I don't know what type of EQing you did.
3. How many times can I say this? Don't bother wasting your time trying to make your speakers sound better.
It seems that no matter what we suggest, you're stuck on the idea of replacing the units that came with the speakers, to something better. Why didn't you just save the money and purchase better speakers? So if "upgrading" these boxes of yours will make you happy, then go for it, but so far you've already wasted like $500, I don't see why you're wasting more.
09-28-2003, 06:57 PM
To help you with your problem I think you need to give us more info. First off you have a mid horn and then 3 piezo.
Can you post a picture of the cabinet from the front?
What is the size in inches of the mid horn?
Does it have a screw on driver or bolt on?
What does the crossover look like?
Does it have choke and two capacitors or is it a little more involved?
How much are you willing to spend to get the mid-high response and smoothness you desire?
09-28-2003, 11:56 PM
Can you say YAMAHA S-115IV's at $529 per pair and they'll handle 500w. Up on a pair of stands they'd do wonders for your system.
Just a suggestion. If you want to tame the highs in those cabinet, disconnect the piezos and get yourself an outboard horn that can sit atop those cabinets. Many companies make them. It'll do for a while but you've made one faux-paux and I sincerely hope you can get out of it.
09-29-2003, 12:44 AM
i hate to be so blunt, but....
what everybody is trying to say is:
You're screwed. That was a dumb move buying speakers like that. All you can do now is sell them as soon as possible and get REAL professional speakers.
Live and Learn!
09-29-2003, 01:48 AM
Thanks for your feedback.
At the moment, I do not have a scanner or digital camera to send a picture, and cannot locate the speaker on the Internet.
The description you requested is:
. 23 1/2" W. (front), sloped down to 17" W. (rear).
. 33 3/4" H.
. 16 1/2" D.
. 84 lbs.
. Crossover: Small plastic plate, with a bunch of wounded bronze wires
(choke?), two capacitors - one labeled "10W75RJ", the other, "20W25RJ".
One wire going to the woofer, one wire to the mid-range horn - coming
from the 20W25RJ, and , a group of wires to an array of 4-tweeters -
coming from the 10W75RJ.
. The neck of the mid-range driver is threaded.
. The rear has both, bare-wire and 1/4" plug speaker wire connectors.
Regarding how much I am willing to spend, well, based on the feedback, I realize that I made a bad decision. Therefore, if there is a "cheapest" way to upgrade (without throwing too much good/hard-earned money into a "bad" choice, I'll appreciate your suggestion. Otherwise, I am stuck with them
until I can do better/sell them.
The outboard horn is a good suggestion. (Will I need to change the
crossover to do this, i.e., from 3 to 2-way, or just disconnect all the tweeters?)
And, the Yamaha price you quoted is certainly a sweet deal. But, I do not think the price quoted was available. I checked "PSSL" and they are selling for $320 each, unless there is another dealer sale/special which I am not aware of.
Thanks for your help.
You are right. In hindsight, I feel stupid for been overtaken by my feelings of pressure, and making a really bad decision.
Thanks ALL for your help/feedback.
09-29-2003, 02:21 AM
the yamahas are $250 each, at your local guitar center, OR
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