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Versatile Performers: Compact Line Arrays

A Real World Gear look at models with a relatively small footprint yet capable of delivering significant output...

Compact line arrays are those we’ve defined as having low-frequency drivers measuring 8.5 inches and smaller.

Array modules in this genre offer a relatively small footprint in terms of size, weight and cost, yet they are capable of delivering significant output. They’re conveniently portable due to the size/weight factor, and are suitable for a range of fixed installations as well.

Compact arrays present a scalable solution – the addition of more loudspeakers easily expands coverage capabilities, and at an affordable level. For dynamic full-range music presentation, arrays are usually accompanied by at least one subwoofer, many of them designed to fit seamlessly within a flown array structure.

Many manufacturers also engineer array modules of various sizes to work together. Most commonly, we see compact modules at the bottom of larger arrays to supply front fill reinforcement at concerts, festivals and other large-scale events, and they can also be placed on the stage lip to provide low-profile near fill.

Another application is side fill in tandem with larger main arrays. An ever-expanding selection of line array tools can only serve to enhance the craft. The challenge is knowing what’s available and being able to quickly differentiate them, at least from a specification standpoint.

And that’s the point of Real World Gear – take our Photo Gallery Tour for a look at a wide range of options from around the industry

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