EV’S NEW X-LINE X2 DEBUTS AT PORT FAIRY
Report: Preshan John
A folk festival is a nightmare draw for a new PA’s inauguration. There’s something about a combination of acoustic instruments — guitars, drums, percussion, banjos, mandolins, fiddles — that instantly and unforgivingly reveals a system’s character. Melbourne production company Powa Productions was a key supplier at Port Fairy Folk Festival for its 40th anniversary this year, and took the chance to put its newly acquired Electro-Voice X-Line X2 two-way mid/high line array system and X12 subwoofer to the test on the main stage.
Powa Productions has had a long relationship with EV that started when AC/DC toured Australia in 1998. Pat Kearney, Production Manager, recalled beginning their “connection with EV via AC/DC. One of the partners in the company was a sound engineer for AC/DC so we grew with AC/DC tours in the late 1990s and the 2000s. It presented a really valuable product. We’ve moved forward into the line array ranges as EV has released them.
“The X2 package is a really great system, and a great step forward in EV’s voicing. It’s continued the work it started with XLC/XLD/XLE and taken it one step further to help create some consistency across its package purchases. As EV investors, or as a touring engineer, you know that as you go from one gig or town to the next, your system is going to sound the same. Plus, you’ve got that same consistency as you go from one cabinet size to the next.
“I feel like the X2 has got great dynamic range — it’s got more dynamic range than its predecessors. It feels more like a return to the XF and XN X-Array, which I really loved. It has great presence and truth through the midrange and feels more responsive to your mix.”
The X12, a dual-18 sub, is one of the highest powered subs on the market at 4000W continuous and 16,000W peak. EV has put in the hard yards in its new anechoic chamber fine-tuning the voicing of the subs. “It’s a very clean tone, and everyone likes the punchiness of it,” said Kearney. “There’s much less of the woofiness that we hear across other brands.”
For production and rental companies, ease of rigging is almost as important as a PA’s sound. The ability to fly the X-Line arrays quickly, easily, and safely, is one of its greatest assets. EV has taken a new approach designing the rigging method for X1 and X2. They both use the same rigging system, although you wouldn’t do combination hangs of the two. Kearney: “It’s an interlocked system — you don’t have any pins to lose or any bits to get bent. It’s very easy coming out of the carts. You fly your first half of the cart, spin it, pick up the next cart, fly it straight as a flat hang and put your degrees in as you go up. Minimum fuss and nice and quick, both in and out. There’s a lot less juggling than with other products when you’re trying to get things into carts, especially on uneven ground.”
The X-Line rig didn’t quite break a sweat at Port Fairy, but Powa Productions has plenty more gigs lined up for the system that’ll see it flex some muscle.
Kearney: “I’m really looking forward to putting the PA out next summer on the Red Hot Summer Tour. It’s a great rock ’n’ roll event that has audience sizes up to 5000 people in states all across Australia. We’ll see some sites with throws of 80m, some with 100m, with varying shapes and sizes. The event itself is a great one for the PA because you know it’ll be light, it’ll be quick. We can get in and out really quick and have a great, consistent-sounding PA.”
Size: 12-inch LF woofer/dual three-inch HF compression drivers
Coverage: 90° Horizontal
Frequency Response: 52Hz – 19kHz
Size: Dual 18-inch
Frequency Response: 33 – 200Hz
Powa Productions: www.powa.com.au
WATCH THE VIDEO
Powa Productions’ Pat Kearney gives the lowdown on EV’s X-Line X2 inbetween sets at Port Fairy.