Considering the cost of the Bose PAS -- as opposed to cheaper alternatives, let's say -- how long might it take to get my money back? I work full-time in another field, but I have always wanted to break into at least a semi-professional singing career. But it seems that there are so many costs involved to move from being just a singer with a guitar on his back to one who has the whole setup.
I have the possibility to take 2-3 months to explore the music performance field. I can afford the equipment. I have a "great voice", a wide repertoire, and lots of musical experience.
All things being equal, will the Bose PAS give me the boost I need to get started? Will I be able to generate immediate income? What could I expect from such an investment?
I'm not a professional musician; I play for hobby interests only, so am in no position to offer you advice on whether the Bose L1 will improve your chances of making it in the music business. But I suspect there is more going on besides what equipment you happen to be using because there are many popular musical acts doing very well while not using the L1, etc.
However, I believe that using an L1 should certainly help your situation by getting you off on the right foot and seeing to it that some of those nuisance problems (feeback, muddy sound, etc) that seem to come with some other sound systems, do not rear their ugly heads in the first place.
Also, because of its simplicity it looks cleaner and more professional on stage (in my opinion, anyway). And if nothing else you can spend some of the time you would otherwise spend unpacking and packing whatever other sound equipment you would have used, convincing those curious audience members that your superior sound really is only coming from the L1! This is always fun!
I was one of those group of people who used other sound gear before switching to an L1, and now wished I would have simply gone out and purchased the L1 as my first sound system.
As I said I am not a professional musician, but if I had any aspirations to be one you can be sure that part of my strategy would be to see to it that I was starting off using the best equipment I could afford, which is the approach I took even while approaching this from a hobbyist point of view... and I realize now that I made a mistake by not starting off with the L1.
We seem to aspire to own the best instruments to suit whatever kind of music we play, and we do our level best to come as close as possible to owning the instrument(s) of our dreams. Why not also the best sound system for our requirments? The L1 is not as expensive as some high-end musical intstruments many of us own and, since you have already indicated that you can afford the equipment I think you probably ought to get an L1 and save yourself the hassle of upgrading to one later on, which you probably would do eventually, etc.
I guess I'll chime in here ...
The L1 system (what's a PAS??) will deliver a very even, clear soundfield. More than any other speaker availble on the market today.
But all it does is fill the room with whatever you give it. So, the real question here is how will your music fit in the venues you try to get hired at and what's the competition like in your area?
I can speak for my band and say we raised our rates twice and still have more gigs than we can handle and it's not becuase we are "talented". I think it's because we have a good time playing and we sound good.
You'll find plenty of examples where folks have raised thier rates once going to the L1 speaker and you'll find plenty who have not. I think there is real value for patrons (using the L1) but it is a function more of your local market as far as what the market will accept for rates.
Does that make sense? I think if you're going to "go for it" go for it 100% and then you'll never wonder ... "what if I HAD purchased the L1". The eBay prices for used L1's is remarkably high. A $2000 single-bass system is selling, on average for $1700 plus $100 in shipping. Crazy good resale value!
I hope that helped you with your plight. Remember, I'm a biased Bose guy who can't imagine why anyone would play live without an L1.
Stuart and Steve,
Thanks, your points are well taken. I can see that the L1 has a high resale value -- but I wouldn't expect to give up and resell it. As for the professional musician part, I suppose I take things too seriously. But I do need some kind of strategy if I'm going to take some time off my tech job to develop the music. (I find it hard to work my 50 hours a week shift work and get much done creatively.)
I suppose if I look at a possible return of investment over 3-6 months (12 months?), then it makes sense. At least I wouldn't miss opportunities simply because I DON'T have the equipment. You're right -- may as well go for the best.
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With the L1 you'll certainly maximize your time available for creativity, due to its quick and simple setup.
I'm with you dbrowng1. Hard to find time to practice and sing and write. In my case, I have a high ranking public safety job but the real issue here is time. My kids are grown and I'm trying to mix all of this in between grandchildren, a full-time job and cutting the grass. But I keep on pushing and whenever I play a gig where I connect, then it's all worth it. So the money I spend (and I spend too much) on all of this equipment and instruments isn't tracked in cash. I track it in, "Oh my God, I loved your songs. Did you really write that?" etc... I've got a strong hunch that the same rush we get is the same for Dylan, Jagger and the others. They do manage to get a few more listeners than me and I'm guessing a couple of more bucks. That's right...I just remembered...I'm not in it for the money! But I do take tips.
I do play and sing full time and I have for now for 7+ years. I switched to the Bose system in January of 2005. (I always thought it was called a PAS, Personalized Amplification System and L1 was the name of the speaker column itself, just as B1 is the name for the base cube. Is that incorrect?)
Here are just a couple of advantages that I have found using my Bose:
1) Because it sounds good for everyone (the system, not necessarily me ) without being too loud for anyone, people are much more apt to enoy the show, thus, I have more people asking me for business cards and booking shows.
2) For the same reason as above, I am selling more CD's!
3) Because load in, set-up, sound check and load out are so easy and because I can hear myself so well and perform with much less vocal strain, I find myself willing and able to take many more gigs. Doing two shows in one day is not near the hassle that it was.
4) The Bose system is so much more compact, I was able to trade in a small SUV for a sedan and I am now getting 30 mpg vs. low 20's with my old car/old sound system.
5) I am willing and can easily set the system up and home to practice, try new gear, etc.
There are so many things involved (at least for me, my music and my lifestyle) that had nothing to do with the cost of the Bose vs. my other system. I had a great sound system: EAW mains, Mackie board, in-ear monitors, but everything weighed a ton, it took me several trips in and out of each venue, people would give me evil looks when I'd put a huge speaker on a stand right by their table, sound checks took a long time.
I hope that helps a bit. There are even more reasons I could list. I have owned so much PA gear and played through countless systems. Get the Bose. As my grandma always said "buy expensive and cry once!"
I love it! I heard this saying a while ago as "buy the good stuff and cry once." I'd forgotten all about that quip. I'm going to have to remember it for my next guitar purchase.
|Market Representative, Western USA|
You are correct, open-road-matt, in that the model number of the L1 is also the trademarked name of the "system". Personalized Amplification System is also a trademarked name. We use "L1" for its brevity - "Personalized Amplification System" can be a mouthful. :-)
We do not use the three letter acronym you mention as it is already trademarked by another audio company.
Here is a simple approach:
Another approach to this is to assume that you will have to have some kind of system (Bose or other). Maybe we need only consider the incremental cost. If the L1 is say (worst case), twice as expensive as the nearest alternative then the difference is $100 a month.
If having the L1 gets you one more gig per month will this be worth having incurred the extra cost?
While this may seem an odd way to look at things, I doubt that it is any stranger than looking at the power to weight ratio.
But seriously, you don't really want to run the System with only one section of the L1. You won't harm the system but you will not be experiencing most of the benefit.
This message has been edited. Last edited by: ST,
Thanks for the proposed business model. It will help me with my budgeting and planning, and help me to justify the expense. If the truth be known, I have been spending several hundred euros a month on leisure travel. I could simply look at the L1 purchase as a different way to treat myself. And I could tell myself that so long as I get $200 per month for my performances, the equipment will pay for itself in only 10 months. I suppose it is the one-time outlay that gives me pause.
I guess if I get the equipment, I won't have any more excuses for not getting out there and booking gigs. No more „I would sing professionally if only I had the equipment.“
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