Sonic Audio Visual, based in Cape Town, were the first installers in South Africa to get our hands on the new MP series processing and amplifiers from QSC. These form the backbone of their recently release Business Music Solutions range. We installed these at the newly launched Tigers Milk Restuarant in Durbanville Cape Town. So here are my first impressions of the gear…
QSC MP-M80 Music and Paging mixer: This processor fills one unit of the rack, but packs a serious collection of features into this slick looking box. It is a fixed architecture processor, so you don’t need to go on a course to figure it out. The rear of the unit we installed had 8 balanced ins on Euroblock connectors and a further 8 line ins via RCA connectors. The inputs are all mono-summed, but you can configure stereo pairs in the software should you wish to run a stereo setup. There are 8 outputs – once again on Euroblock connectors. Once cool accessory in the box is the premade patch cables to link this unit to the MP-A80V amplifier – very nice touch and speeds up the install. Between the ins and the outs this unit has all the standard things you would expect to see such parametric EQ, graphic EQ, compression, limiting and speaker presets for the QSC range. Some cool additional features are the Loudness function that boosts bass and treble at low volumes and the Automatic Gain control. The features can be tweaked to your liking but are extremely valuable in a restuarant context where you want great sounding music at a range of volumes and often the tracks being played are all over the place in terms of average volume.
Other useful options are scenes and schedulers that can be used to manually or automatically change a group of parameters – such as muting the system at the end of the night or setting up the DJ with different parameters to the background music.
Another interesting tool that we didn’t use in this project is the built in 16 track mixer, along with built in EFX. Could see this being a useful tool in small House of Worship contexts.
Now the software to program this baby is super flexible – MP-M Install can run on your PC, tablet (iOS and Android) and even your phone. The phone is a bit small, but super helpful for a quick tweak on site. Once you have got your head around the workflow it is quick and easy to setup. There are a few small bugs and a small wish list of tweaks that I would love to see in future software updates, but as we basically got this unit before it was even meant to be shipping to Africa these were minor and forgivable 🙂
Controlling the device again is really easy. Just install MP- Manage on your device and the admin can control who can do what very easily. Perfect for the hospitality industry! Setup was really easy. I just connected to a dedicated router and the rest was easy!
So how does it sound? It sounds excellent – clean, transparent and balanced at all volumes thanks to the built in tools.
On to the amp…. QSC MP-A80V: This 8 channel amp also only needs one unit of rack space. It has got to be one of the most flexible amps I have ever used. FlexAmp Technology allows each pair of amplifier channels to deliver up to 400 W total power, in any ratio. Yes! – so you can run a 100w pair of tops on one channel and 300w sub on the adjacent channel. on top of that each channel can output in to 8ohm/4ohm or 100v loads individually switchable. there is also a switchable 80 Hz high-pass filter on each output channel. So for small to medium size projects with a mix of speaker types and loads this amp is a dream. At this Tigers Milk install we ran a mix of 4ohm loads, 100v circuits and used the flexible power output to run 12in subs. Super easy and this amp also sound great! Tops were clear and clean and the subs were well controlled at all volumes.
For more pics of the install see Sonic AV Facebook page facebook.com/SonicAudioVisual For more detailed prodcut info check out https://www.qsc.com/systems/solutions/business-music/
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