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View Full Version : BSS Omnidrives Vs DBX Driverack



jblbgw_man
10-30-2008, 09:53 PM
Is anybody using BSS Omni drives, either FDS-334T or FDS-336T? I would be interested in your opinions. Does anybody have any direct experience with comparisons with the DBX Drive Racks Vs the BSS Omin drives...... many thanks, OR is one better off going down the DEQX road.

scott fitlin
10-30-2008, 10:04 PM
I have a 366t, and I used it the year before this past summer, and THOUGHT it prettygood, ONCE you get it dialed in for your system. Then I returned to Analog crossovers, and havent been able to get into that BSS again. This last summer, I DID try the BSS twice, first time I had it in for 2 days, and then took it out, the second time i put it in, 5 minutes later I was taking it out. Its a good unit, takes time to tweak it to get optimum results, BUT I find IT a BIT bright. Widget had put it the best, sounds like the way a TV looks if you have the contrast up too high.

I have heard the DBX units, to my ears, these sound voiced to be a bit warmer, and they have entry level, middle ground, and their flagship unit.

DEQX, as far as DSP processing goes everyone seems to say this is the BEST.

I have heard Dolby Lake and Lake and DEQX were part of each other. The Pros love Lake. I think Lake does sound good, if set up properly, but I still prefer analog over this!

This is what I got to give! Hope it helps.

Are you interested in a BSS 366t?

jblbgw_man
10-30-2008, 11:16 PM
This is what I got to give! Hope it helps.

Are you interested in a BSS 366t?
Thanks for your time to comment Scotty, I love the BSS analog gear over the DBX analog stuff but was'nt sure about the digital domain gear. I was talking to the OZ BSS/DBX distributor and they told me DBX have rationalised their product range and now only have available the 260 and the 4800, the price variation is huge between the 2 models. I am just wondering if the digital path is more trouble than it's worth.:blink: I suppose I was hoping for something that would "auto" correct for room anomalies without adding phase distortions in the eq process but this may be a big ask. The thing I did like about the Omnidrive was that it will interface to SMAART Live software ...... :cheers:

scott fitlin
10-30-2008, 11:43 PM
Thanks for your time to comment Scotty, I love the BSS analog gear over the DBX analog stuff but was'nt sure about the digital domain gear. I was talking to the OZ BSS/DBX distributor and they told me DBX have rationalised their product range and now only have available the 260 and the 4800, the price variation is huge between the 2 models. I am just wondering if the digital path is more trouble than it's worth.:blink: I suppose I was hoping for something that would "auto" correct for room anomalies without adding phase distortions in the eq process but this may be a big ask. The thing I did like about the Omnidrive was that it will interface to SMAART Live software ...... :cheers:Yeah, and i realized after i posted DBX is down to 2 models. Although the DBX website still lists several models.

The 4800 is The Flagship DBX unit.

With the 366t, and the correct mic, it will auto time align, and EQ, etc. It has SO many functions and features, its mind boggling. +/- 15DB input gain, +/-15DB output gain. You can do 6,12,18,24,36,48 or WHISEWORKS filters, Bessl, Butterworth or Linkwitz-Riley shapes, Paranmetric EQing, Bell or Shelving filters, Time alignment, phase alignment, polarity adjut, compression, and limiting. 2 way + mono sum subwoofer out, 3 way, 4 way, it is an INTERESTING UNIT, all the others are too. The one thing about auto alignment, though, is pretty much every pro I know, says they do it better, than what they get from auto correct features. And maybe not so much that the auto setup, or auto correct features aren't accurate as much as someone sets up a sound to their taste?

Is it worth it to go down the digital path? Hard to say yes or no! 1 year ago, I would have said NO, 100%. Today, I say I dont know your system, your room, or your TASTE! It might be. I can tell you that while the BSS 366t is CLEAN, and very feature laden, it is not as warm sounding as analog crossovers. BUT, and this is a big BUT, what I didnt like about it through MY speakers MAY, in fact have MUCH to do with MY speakers, NOT the processor. Lets say you have cone mids, not 2in comp driver on horns as I have, now all of a sudden, what sounds BRIGHT to me, sounds GREAT to you, ya know?

I know digital is getting better all the time, and not like WELL does it sound like something yet? More like YO this shit is getting gooood!

The least expensive DBX is really an entrylevel product, not saying it's bad, but it is entrylevel. So, IF you have a better than decent system at your home, it may not be good enough for you.

The DBX-4800, yes, COSTLY!

DEQX, VERY COSTLY, but, they ALL LIKE this one! But your going to pay.....

I at one time, I might have suggested to buy the DBX 260, as ITS CHEAP, BUT digital unlike analog, if you dont get good, you also dont get good sound, whereas analog, less costly units sounded OK, you knew you can and will get better when finances allow, but it was OK sounding. With DSP you buy cheap, and you GET the same thing in return, THIS IS MY OPINION. And my experience with DSP. Some swear by the Behringer, i've heard small systems with them, don't quite hear what they say they hear, BUT who am I to judge, I don't have to live with their system! Analog you could do economically and get good results, DSP you either do IT or you DON'T! As I see it.

Of course, at some point, we will have DSP that sounds good at all pricepoints, I just don't think we are quite at that point yet.

Thats about the size of it! From my point of veiw.

Oldmics
10-31-2008, 03:59 PM
Whats your application?

How much money do you have to spend on a speaker processer?

IMHO-the BSS wins hand down between your lower cost choices you have specified.

Now if you want to discuss pure sonics go down the DEQX path (are they still supported since Lake went away ? ) or with an XTA.

Oldmics

diamondsouled
11-01-2008, 02:50 PM
Interesting thread.

Makes me think back on how digital has changed over time. Remember back in the early 80's the sound of the original algorithm synths and drum machines? Remember how impressed you were when the first digital sampling units came out? And then there is the DA AD converters going from 16 bits up to 48-96 and now even higher.

Was a time when I really didn't like digital effects/processors all that much except maybe for the convenience. Now when I use the new Waves digital processors I go like: "Oh, wow!". Imagine what it will be like when the next generation ICs come out using light instead of electrons for processing! Then there will be some OP amps that are really transparent and uncolored.:blah:

Lar

Tim Rinkerman
11-05-2008, 09:10 AM
We have used and sold both units here....the DBX definately has its own sound...what comes out does not sound like what goes in. Ths Omnidrives are tremendously versatile,sound good, and are the most prone to failure. 2 years is the most we have gotten out of one before the power supply fails...no question, it will fail. Out of some 200 we installed, we have replaced or repaired 185 of them. The old analog BSS stuff was pretty nice, like the FDS 360 crossovers, otherwise, Better Bring Spares....

boputnam
11-05-2008, 09:27 AM
I guess I better chime in. I run into all varieties of these, all the time, in adverse conditions (limited time before downbeat to de-program some stupidity that has crept into the settings by visiting band engineers (and/or lazy house engineers who have done similar or not remedied the infraction...).


The thing I did like about the Omnidrive was that it will interface to SMAART Live software ...... :cheers:That is fancy (and I like it too!), but not necessary. The front display is plenty accessible and functional.


IMHO-the BSS wins hand down between your lower cost choices you have specified.+100 points.


Now if you want to discuss pure sonics go down the DEQX path (are they still supported since Lake went away ? ) or with an XTA.Bonus +100 points on the xta. But, back on topic...


We have used and sold both units here....the DBX definately has its own sound...what comes out does not sound like what goes in. Man, I LOVE that quote. A beaut!


The Omnidrives are tremendously versatile, sound good, and are the most prone to failure. 2 years is the most we have gotten out of one before the power supply fails...no question, it will fail. Out of some 200 we installed, we have replaced or repaired 185 of them. ....I have not personally experienced this. But, since I don't own one, maybe I missed the "Oh, damn!" night.

The dbx Driverack only has a GEQ. That is a severe limitation and big differentiator. But, while the BSS have PEQ's, there are a limited number available. If you use too many on the outputs, there will be few (if any) left for the inputs. That sucks, but relates to the processing power required to handle all those instructions sets (read: filters). It is easy enough to work around, and you should have a separate outboard GEQ in any case for quick, and room-related filters.

I was also left with the impression that the dbx is less flexible as far as I/O configurations, but that may not be valid or correct.

Overall, I'm with Oldmics - BSS are the hands-down winner of the two you mention. That's why I almost always carry a spare xta DP448 (http://www.xta.uk.com/products-series4.html) with me to every walk-in I do... ;)

johnaec
11-05-2008, 10:30 AM
The dbx Driverack only has a GEQ. That is a severe limitation and big differentiator.Edit: DING!! (smaller than gasket) :scold: At least the DR260, (and I believe the DRPA series), give you the choice between GEQ or 9-band *full* parametric. I'd have to check, though, in that I believe at any given point where you can use EQ you have to select between one or the other, (they can still be intermixed at the same time - just not the same place). I may even be wrong on that count, it's been so long since I've played with that area. I do plan on having the DR260 fired up over the weekend - I'll take a look.

BTW - the DR260 is so much more flexible than the DRPA, (including computer interface and routing flexibility), that there's almost no comparison.

Surely, I'd love to have access to the level stuff you guys get to use, but us "homegrown" budget band types at least get to play with some fun stuff, even if it isn't always state of the art. And the learning experiences have been invaluable!

John

Andyoz
11-05-2008, 11:30 AM
I wouldn't use the DRPA. The 260 is OK but anyless less definitely has "it's own sound" as stated above.

better still, get hold of a rebadged XTA unit, i.e. Turbosound, etc. get the "unlock" code to free up some serious processing on the cheap.

boputnam
11-05-2008, 01:01 PM
GONGG!! :scold: At least the DR260, (and I believe the DRPA series), give you the choice between GEQ or 9-band *full* parametric. I'd have to check, though, in that I believe at any given point where you can use EQ you have to select between one or the other, (they can still be intermixed at the same time - just not the same place). I may even be wrong on that count, it's been so long since I've played with that area. I do plan on having the DR260 fired up over the weekend - I'll take a look.Don't blow a gasket, John... The older units did not offer the choice - actually they did, but I think the PEQ's were limited to only maybe 2 filters. Like I said, no choice. The 260 certainly does have the option as does the PA. But, these are inferior to BSS Omnidrives, for sure.

johnaec
11-05-2008, 01:40 PM
'Wasn't blowing a gasket, just correcting a blanket statement...

John

allen mueller
11-05-2008, 06:23 PM
When I was messing around with DSP's in my system, my favorite ended up being the Yamaha SP2060. They can be bought new for less than BSS units you are looking at. I found the sound quality to be very close to a good analog crossover (I had a Marchand XM26 at the time). I've also messed around with the dbx PA, 260 and the BSS 336, and 366T. I'd agree with Tim that the dbx has its own sound, and with Scott that the BSS is a bit bright.

Now I'm back to a much more simple analog route and thats what I prefer, but the Yamaha was my favorite when I had a DSP.

http://www.yamahaproaudio.com/products/processors/sp2060/index.html

Allen

scott fitlin
11-05-2008, 06:31 PM
I know alot of guys using the DBX entry level units, my biggest problem with it was its input front end. JUST not sturdy enough, and too easy to overdrive, makes a crackling sound.

As I said with DSP you EITHER DO IT OR YOU DON'T!

Tim Rinkerman
11-05-2008, 07:53 PM
Please accept my humblest apologies to the group...I had a senior moment and replaced "Soundweb" with "Omnidrive" for the day. The Omnidrives are good sounding units, for live, however, to me the processing speed gets in the way. The Soundweb processors are the most guaranteed to fail device I have ever dealt with. We are at almost 90% failure rate, and still climbing.
Bo,
You agree with me DBX stuff has its own "sound"?
JBL BGW guy,
Great choice! My favorite "3 letter company" combination of all time!

I dare somebody to start a thread listing every "three letter" audio device company in the last thirty years...:blink:

scott fitlin
11-05-2008, 08:06 PM
I dare somebody to start a thread listing every "three letter" audio device company in the last thirty years...:blink:

TAD
DBX
DAS
API
EAW
BGW
MXR
BSS
XTA
BMS


Just a few to start with, :rotfl:

Andyoz
11-06-2008, 01:20 AM
As I said with DSP you EITHER DO IT OR YOU DON'T!

Or just buy some of the old analgue gear people are virtually giving away on eBay as they jump on the DSP bandwagon. :D

jblbgw_man
11-06-2008, 06:44 PM
Thanks for your detailed responses guys, BSS is my preference over DBX coz I was put off by the DBX 223 Xovers years ago, they are way too harsh sounding for my liking and I did'nt think much of their VCA's in earlier gear either compared to Aphex's stuff. :barf:I don't have the $$ for a DEQX so I will have to strike that off my list. I have only used the BSS FDS360's and they have a good clean sound with a nice detailed top end. Their analog design craps all over the DBX stuff IMHO, Burr Brown OP series chips throughout and matched resistor networks on the same substrate on the differential inputs and outputs for temp stability and tracking tells me that the designers know their stuff and went the extra mile with the design of the FDS360's ... I think this is generally typical of BSS stuff from what I hear.

Thanks Tim for clarifying the failures between the Omnidrives and the Soundweb.

Mike Caldwell
11-07-2008, 06:31 AM
A word of caution if you should try a DBX Drive Rack model ( would not be my choice though) they will produce a very nasty output spike one powering down and some what on powering up, make sure you take note of you power up sequence and power down sequence. The DBX 260 does not produce the power spike and has internal jumpers for input and out levels if they need to be changed.

Mike Caldwell

boputnam
11-07-2008, 07:16 AM
...(smaller than gasket)... Now that's funny! Nice edit, John - gave me a hella good laugh... :applaud:

btw, we're in Sebastopol next weekend. I hear the hall pretty much sucks. Oh goody... :biting:

johnaec
11-07-2008, 01:09 PM
btw, we're in Sebastopol next weekend.Where and what night? 'Might have a chance to get out, but right now it's really a day-by-day thing...

John

boputnam
11-07-2008, 01:39 PM
The Community Center, Saturday. Weird. There's all sorta halls around the northbay and this one they use and have to drag a PA into...

johnaec
11-07-2008, 02:36 PM
The Community Center, Saturday. Weird. There's all sorta halls around the northbay and this one they use and have to drag a PA into...Saturday the 15th? If so, maybe, but we're having a long-planned jam session with some old friends tomorrow, the 8th.

I thought you might be playing this little "word of mouth place" outside Sebastopol that caters to the underground - 'not sure if it's still even running...

John

short_circutz
01-30-2009, 11:37 PM
Yeah, and i realized after i posted DBX is down to 2 models.

There are more than 2 models available.



The dbx Driverack only has a GEQ.

It has parametrics on the outputs.


I was also left with the impression that the dbx is less flexible as far as I/O configurations, but that may not be valid or correct.

I/O configs/routing are not able to be user configured on the Driverack PA, but are available on the Driverack 260.


Edit: DING!! (smaller than gasket) :scold: At least the DR260, (and I believe the DRPA series), give you the choice between GEQ or 9-band *full* parametric.
DRPA has only graphic available on the i/p, and only parametric available on o/p's.

BTW - the DR260 is so much more flexible than the DRPA, (including computer interface and routing flexibility), that there's almost no comparison.
The 260 also has better limiting with its Peakstop Plus limiters over the DRPA.


Don't blow a gasket, John... The older units did not offer the choice - actually they did, but I think the PEQ's were limited to only maybe 2 filters. Like I said, no choice. The 260 certainly does have the option as does the PA. But, these are inferior to BSS Omnidrives, for sure.Depending on crossover configuration in the DRPA, there are 2 to 3 PEQ filters on each output.


I know alot of guys using the DBX entry level units, my biggest problem with it was its input front end. JUST not sturdy enough, and too easy to overdrive, makes a crackling sound.
Never had the issue with my DRPA.


A word of caution if you should try a DBX Drive Rack model ( would not be my choice though) they will produce a very nasty output spike one powering down and some what on powering up, make sure you take note of you power up sequence and power down sequence. The DBX 260 does not produce the power spike and has internal jumpers for input and out levels if they need to be changed.

Mike Caldwell
Only the DRPA has the turn-on/turn-off o/p spike issue. Generally, anyone who uses one should have a small UPS in the rack with it to allow you to be able to keep it powered up for a short period pf time in case of accidental or other forms of A/C loss.

The rest of the Driverack models don't have this issue and why DBX has not corrected it is beyond me.

boputnam
02-02-2009, 02:38 PM
The dbx Driverack only has a GEQ.

It has parametrics on the outputs.
Yeah, that was my point.

Typically, I try to not edit the output filters because those are intended to be application / box specific. "Live" edits are typically made to the input stage, and John is right - one can specify either GEQ (28 band) or PEQ (9 band) for the input stage in the DR260 EQ setup.

Serum
02-04-2009, 09:39 AM
does the drivrack 260 knows an auto-delay and phase adjustment with the use of the microphone or is it 'just' to setup the eq? I know there are two sorts of callibrations you can choose from?

I know the omnidrive has an auto allignment function which can correct both phase and delay. pretty neat feature IMO..

boputnam
02-04-2009, 12:59 PM
Far as I know, the DR260 has no "auto" delay. I presume the cabinet / system presets have imbedded delays, specific to the preset. Otherwise, the delay (on both inputs and outputs) is set manually.

Mike Caldwell
02-04-2009, 01:34 PM
There is no auto delay on the 260, as for the auto EQ I would not really trust that to be your final EQ setting. The auto EQ always tries to achieve a flat response by applying lots of boost at the frequency extremes. That can very bad if your system low end cabinet is only really good down to say 40hz or so. Lots of amp head room lost and potential over excursion of the woofers.

lgvenable
12-26-2009, 04:38 PM
I've been listening with interest. As a more than casual less than professional user of the dBX dr260; I found it very easy to use to eq my subs , once I acquired the RTA-M mic the setup of both my DIY 2445 & my sr4719 was easy and gave great results fast.

Maybe others can hear better than me (no doubt), but the setup was exceptionally easy; and the use of the windows GUI was pretty straight-forward; especially for someone who has learned most of the details on setting up a system by osmosis (or so it feels sometime).;)

caladois
04-23-2010, 01:52 AM
I am nearly going on a digital XTA pocessor. Did anyone had experience with ? It will replace my old M553ex.

JBl crossover is good, but I always have problems to adjust precisely the gain and frequencies. Bloody pots !!!

lgvenable
04-23-2010, 09:06 PM
and has no pots, comes preloaded with a lot of JBL speaker profiles too. It was reasonably easy to setup, even for an old fart like me.

http://www.audioheritage.org/vbulletin/showthread.php?5392-DRIVERACK-or-Not-driverack

boputnam
04-26-2010, 09:58 AM
I am nearly going on a digital XTA pocessor. Did anyone had experience with ? I have a few, and have used nearly all in the DP-series. I have worked them both on the face, and thru AudioCore software on my laptop.

xta's are great sounding, fabulously powerful units. I never tour without one, even if we are using installs the entire run. I route my xta into the signal path, bypassing all the Omnidrives/minidrives and Driveracks I encounter.

If you get one, try and use the AudioCore software - it provides excellent graphical representation of your chosen band passes and applied fliters, shown with gains, and without.

avouts
10-04-2011, 05:09 PM
I'm owner of two DBX PA two EV DX38 and two XTA DP226 . If you have the money
then go for XTA !