L1 Model II

Let's talk about the L1® Portable Line Array Systems

Using proprietary Bose® technology, L1 systems combine  PA and monitors into a single, highly portable unit. The  loudspeaker can be positioned behind or to the side —and you hear what the audience hears.

Highly portable PA and monitor combined for solo performers, DJs and general-purpose use. Fixed vertical control with 180° horizontal coverage Reduced vulnerability to feedback.

Three systems to choose from (Compact, Model 1S, Model II)
Two passive bass module options (B1 or B2)
Consistent coverage and tonal balance, portability and easy setup.

I own 2 L1 compacts and am interested in using them in stereo.  I need to determine which mixer to secure.  I’ve considered both the Behringer xr12 and Bose T8S.  Could you share the strengths/weaknesses or both?  Or share a different recommendation.  The cost is a factor.  Thanks much.

Original Post

The XR12 is much cheaper.

Are you familiar with digital mixers?  There IS a learning curve involved and of course you would need a pad to run the XR12.

There is a rich choice of 6 channel mixers in the $250-$400 range that are mostly rather intuitive analogue versions that don't have to depend upon a reliable wifi connection to run.  I've seen friends of mine at gigs struggle to get the connection between their XR18 and their pad working. 

But I DO use a Touchmix 16 at most of my gigs.  The advantages with a digital mixer like that is built in effects and scene storage (I play with at least 3 different "bands"), it's easier to record gigs and it IS great to be able to walk around behind the line to mix monitors and then out front to mix the house sound with a pad.

I have a band with 3 guitars and three mikes.  I use one or two L1 compacts depending on the size of the gig.  I have a Behringer and it served us well for a long time but it takes a lot of practice to set it up with sound that comes across well to the audience.  Then when you go to set up in a different area, or even the same area if someone bumped or touched the controls, you start from scratch.  The T8s is a dream come true with the presets which get you so close to perfect sound, then you put that in memory for that channel and all I need to do is bump a couple of buttons and I am good to go.  I might tweak the gain or volume but that is about it and people find it hard to believe the sound is so good

Depends on how much you might feel the need to adjust your mixer. If you do a lot of different setups where scenes are important, or you want to quickly dial in a mix setting for various setups, you're pretty much bought into a digital mixer. Within that, do you need wireless? Real knobs? iPad capability? Record capability (and standalone or PC/Mac required to record)? Lots of options out there, and honestly, most are cheaper than the Tonematch. 

If you normally play with the same band setup and need effects but not necessarily scenes/presets, no wireless needed and want real knobs and faders (and are on a budget), analog mixers are still very popular and appropriate. I've used both digital and analog mixers with my pair of L1 Compacts for different reasons.

  • Traveling Southern Gospel Vocal Group - normally we use a Presonus StudioLive and a QSC K-series rig (main PA and monitors), but they wanted to try my Bose L1's with an Allen and Heath Qu-PAC. That worked out real well as we could locate all the equipment on stage or in the performance area (corner with a piano), plug everything in without needing an audio snake and I could mix with an iPad out front (as the sound guy). If I wasn't available, they could put the iPad on a music stand and control all functions as needed. 
  • Acoustic Band - my own band owns the L1 Compacts that my Gospel group tried out, and we use an analog Soundcraft Signature MTK mixer. We don't change a lot of our settings on the mixer, other than reverb/echo effects settings, and that takes about as much time as a digital mixer. It's also all physical knobs so it's easy for any of us to reach over and adjust levels as needed. All my guitar changes are on my guitar pedalboard. So, there's not a whole lot of reason to use digital, especially since this thing can even multitrack record (the "MTK" in the mixer name means it can record multitrack to a connected PC/Mac or Laptop), so it's kind of the best of both worlds.

 

I do like digital mixers, as I regularly use Allen and Heath GLD's, various QU flavors and Presonus StudioLives but I will say among them that I prefer a real set of faders and knobs even if I mix on an iPad remotely. You can't beat having that as a backup. A fellow band had the Soundcraft UI mixer (wireless only, no surface controls) and, while they liked it, they had too many problems with it losing connection when playing out, and sometimes it even rebooted mid-use. They ended up going back to their Mackie ProFX12 mixer, which works great for them. If you end up getting a digital mixer, go for real knobs and faders. In this high traffic Wi-Fi world, not having a backup to an iPad control is just inviting disaster. And if you really don't need the advantages of digital, save some money and go analog, absolutely nothing wrong with that.

Hope this helps,
Jeff

Another gentle warning -- keep your digital mixer out of the direct sun.

My Touchmix 16's display screen went entirely dark when the headliners were setting up the last time I mixed a major sound gig because it had been in the direct sun for too long (about an hour).  Luckily, my iPad connection was still operative and I mixed them using that.

I don't know of ANY digital mixers that don't have "hidden" levels of control that must be operated using the display to drill down through them.  Only analog mixers put all of the controls where the eye can easily see them and the hand can manipulate them.

Yamaha mg10XU for 10 channels.  Very reasonable price, compact and simple to use.  It will do the job for 2 L1's.

Digital mixer takes a while to learn and have way too much stuffs.  It's nice and has a lot of features that I don't care to learn.  

Best of luck.  Cheers.

Hi, pjlloyd2.

Welcome to the Bose Portable PA Community. I'm glad you joined us.

pjlloyd2 posted:

I own 2 L1 compacts and am interested in using them in stereo.  

Please tell us about your application.

  • Where you use your two L1 Compacts
  • How many inputs you will have
    • Microphones
    • Instruments
  • You mentioned stereo
    • Do you have stereo music or video sources?
    • What are they?
  • The size of the area where the audience be
  • What people will be doing while you are performing
  • Do you (or the system operator) have experience with running live sound?

I need to determine which mixer to secure.  I’ve considered both the Behringer xr12 and Bose T8S.  Could you share the strengths/weaknesses or both?  Or share a different recommendation.  The cost is a factor.  Thanks much.

One thing that distinguishes the T8S from other mixers is the Bose ToneMatch Presets. Please check out this article. It describes what the ToneMatch Presets do

ToneMatch

Please give us the information requested above and we can help you to talk about mixers in the context of your situation.

Thanks,

ST

  • Where you use your two L1 Compacts
  • How many inputs you will have
    • Microphones
    • Instruments
  • You mentioned stereo
    • Do you have stereo music or video
    • sources?
    • What are they?
  • The size of the area where the audience be
  • What people will be doing while you are performing
  • Do you (or the system operator) have experience with running live sound?   

  • It is used mostly in church or banquet/dinner affairs.
  • I typically use 2 microphones.  On occasion I’ll use 3.
  • I use stereo tracks.  I play keyboards.  Mostly a Nord with a Roland Bk-m7.  On occasion I’ll do a keytar.
  • Mostly it’s stereo music.  I have used it for video.
  • The size of the area varies.
  • The audience is in a concert setting or following a meal.
  • i have some experience with running live sound.  Almost no experience doing digital sound.

Behringer XR12 if you are happy to learn how to drive a digital, tablet controlled mixer (I use it for duo gigs and open mics and a Mackie DL1608 or Berry X32 Compact and Rack as the gigs get bigger). Love them all but they aren't for everybody. If analogue is your thing then the aforementioned Yamaha seems to get a lot of love but my fave small (and medium) analogue desks are the Allan & Heath Zed series.

Hi, pjlloyd2.

pjlloyd2 posted:
  • Where you use your two L1 Compacts
  • How many inputs you will have
    • Microphones
    • Instruments
  • You mentioned stereo
    • Do you have stereo music or video
    • sources?
    • What are they?
  • The size of the area where the audience be
  • What people will be doing while you are performing
  • Do you (or the system operator) have experience with running live sound?

Thanks for the information you provided.

A big factor is whether or not you need or want to run stereo and for that question - the size of the audience area matters - a lot.

In an intimate setting, depending on the layout of the room, and placement of the stage

  • Most of the audience is in front of the L1 Compacts
  • In a rectangular space, (e.g., 30 x 30 feet or 10 x 10 meters)


You might be able to recreate a stereo image for most of the listeners. The listeners on the sides of the room may hear predominantly the L1 Compact closest to them (not stereo).

If you can tell us about the size (rough dimensions would help), and stage placement then we can talk more meaningfully about stereo.

If the room is larger than say 1000 square feet, there's a chance the stereo imaging would be lost for most of the audience and you may want to place the L1 Compacts asymmetrically For example: If the audience space is deeper than wide, you might put one L1 Compact on or near the stage, one farther into the audience area. You wouldn't run a stereo setup in the traditional sense.

Please tell us more about the spaces where you'll be performing.



  • It is used mostly in church or banquet/dinner affairs.
  • I typically use 2 microphones.  On occasion I’ll use 3.

Is this predominantly spoken word or singing?

What make/model are the microphones?



  • I use stereo tracks.  I play keyboards.  Mostly a Nord with a Roland Bk-m7.  On occasion I’ll do a keytar.

Got it, and Keytar - fun!

Is this mainly you as the only instrumentalist with others on vocals or will you have a variety of musical instruments? What kinds of instruments? Will the complement on stage vary much from week to week or within an event?

  • Mostly it’s stereo music.  I have used it for video.
  • The size of the area varies.
  • The audience is in a concert setting or following a meal.
  • i have some experience with running live sound.  Almost no experience doing digital sound.

If you are used to running live sound with an analog mixer with built-in or external compressors, effects units, and multiband EQ, a digital mixer is another a way to do all of those things and likely more with routing and effects. I don't want to trivialize using a digital mixer with a virtual (screen-based) user interface but a lot of it is about putting all the functionality of a rack full of external gear into a single device. (Like I did with this paragraph).

If you have a simple stage setup that doesn't change much from event to event or have changes within an event (different groups of performers) then almost any mixer with enough channels, basic EQ, and simple effects will do.

If there are lots of changes, then let's talk about those because there are more things to consider.

ST

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