Reply To: passive v active speakers for gigging band

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gilly
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MJC
I am not asking the ‘wrong’ question, but it sure looks like I’m asking some wrong ‘answerers’ …
Knowing what ballpark power (in watts) will be required for pub type venues (as opposed to a large concert hall type venue) gets us started and narrows down what size PA’s to begin looking at.
After that, yes I agree, you need to look at other various parameters to arrive at a suitable system.
The same goes for my job as an electrical design engineer, If we are looking at sizing/selecting an electrical sump pump for a certain size room, you might know from experience that you will need around a 1000W motor. This is the mechanical output power you require. Now there are various types of motors from different manufacturers that have different efficiencies and therefore higher or lower electrical input power which will determine the size of switchgear you then have to install and eventually you would then narrow your search down to getting the correct pump and switchgear for your particular application. But you need to start somewhere.
Same sort of thing with the PA system.

Have a look at suggested power ratings offered by a leading PA systems manufacturer, posed from very similar question : How much power do I need ?
I suppose they are wrong too…..

Total amplifier power required in various applications
• Folk music in a coffee shop with 50 seats: 25 to 250 W
• Folk music in a medium-size auditorium, club or house of worship with 150 to 250 seats: 95 to 250 W
• Folk music at a small outdoor festival (50 feet from speaker to audience): 250 W
• Pop or jazz music in a medium-size auditorium. club or house of worship with 150 to 250 seats: 250 to 750 W
• Pop or jazz music in a 2000-seat concert hall: 400 to 1,200 W
• Rock music in a medium-size auditorium, club or house of worship with 150 to 250 seats: At least 1,500 W
• Rock music at a small outdoor festival (50 feet from speaker to audience): At least 1,000 to 3,000 W
• Rock or heavy metal music in a stadium, arena or ampitheater (100 to 300 feet from speaker to audience): At least 4,000 to 15,000 W

Peace ……