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Old 05-05-2018, 05:57 PM
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Methos1979 Methos1979 is offline
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Default Bose S1 Pro, Boss VE-8, battery power = traveling light

And now for the final test of the Bose S1 Pro/Boss VE-8 combo for the ultimate in traveling light and fast setup - tomorrow's acoustic brunch will feature just the Bose S1, the Boss VE-8 (both under battery power), the Martin 000-18GE Custom, one mic, two cords, Xvive U2 wireless, a strap and a capo. Set list is on my phone.

I tested the system today in the backyard - slick. Photos come in next post and update on live performance tomorrow but not expecting any issues. I will say it's nice to be traveling so light. Everything fits in the Gator Pro-Go gig bag (minus the S1, of course) so just carrying two things. Setup time is under 5 minutes.

Update - post gig!

I figured I'd update the all battery/no external power up here rather than down below in a follow-up post to make it easier for those coming in for the first time! We used the 'ultra-light' setup today for our bi-weekly Acoustic Brunch and although it was a shortened gig due to a family issue cropping up, the gear was a huge success.

The first thing we did was arrive much later than usual. We normally get there a full half our in advance to unpack everything, get everything plugged in and turned on and tweaked before going live. Today we got there less than 10 minutes before the hour. Right out of the gate we ran into an issue in that our normal playing area was in disarray from the previous day's events. Yesterday was comic-book day so our normal bench that sits behind us (where we place our S1) was moved to another area and still had a ton of comic books on it. So instead we just grabbed a high bar stool/chair from the bar and used that.

This ended up being really cool because it placed the S1 a good foot higher. We have run the S1 in several locations at this venue and we have found that having it sit directly behind us, vertically and angled up is the best position. We hear it perfectly (obviously) and the sound is thrown just right, up and over the bar which sits right in front of us. For those that have followed my many threads on the S1 we have found that we much prefer either the S1 sitting vertically angled up (as opposed to sitting flat) or up on a stand. Setup of everything could not have been easier or faster. Even after moving the comic book-laden bench out of the way (along with a couple boxes that were on it), moving the bar chair over, placing the S1 on it, put the VE-8 on the floor, run two chords to it (one from the mic, the other to the S1), plug in the wireless Xvive U2, turn the units on and we were ready to play at 9:57.

Everything sounded GREAT. Not that that was surprising since we had used this setup before just not with AC power. It definitely sounded better today but only because of the slightly elevated positioning of the S1 on the higher chair. We could both hear everything crystal clear and we got a lot of compliments from patrons and workers at the cafe. I did bring my Cablephyle bag with extra cords (just in case) but that stayed in the car's trunk. Better safe than sorry. But boy, oh boy, let me tell you, when it comes to a simplified setup, what we did today was perfect. I pretty much plan to go this route from now on - even when power is readily available. Why wouldn't I? I just wish my Mooer Ocean Machine pedal ran on batteries. But even on occasions when I use that, that's just one thing I'll need to plug in.

The S1 continues to impress and I'm extremely happy with the Boss VE-8. Someone remarked in a post below about a lack of EQ on the VE-8. The Boss does have EQ. You press two buttons and it goes into EQ mode and then you've got low, high and mid EQ with tweakable mid sweeps, low-pass and other options. Some have remarked this is 'too hard' to remember and you need to make sure you have your manual with you but I have not found this to be the case.

Besides, I've now got the VE-8 dialed in to a T for both guitars so I never have to mess with it anyway. Any final minor tweaks are accomplished on the S1 high and low and even then that is mostly just cutting the low to fight off any tubbiness or flubbiness when the volume gets high. The S1 gains detent at the halfway mark and indeed the volume seems to be the best there. It's a slow rise until about the fourth notch then from four to five (halfway) the volume increases dramatically until the detent and from there on it increases incrementally.

I have set the guitar and mic preamp gains on the VE-8 so that the individual volumes on it are down around 30% and with the S1 at the full halfway detent that gives a very full, relatively loud volume that is clean, crisp and clear. If I need more I'll dial up the volume on the VE-8 as needed but so far this has not been necessary except for when I did the outside test and I wanted to see how loud I could get it to go. But for the average small to medium venue my current setup seems to be just right. Patrons, workers, and most importantly - the owner - have been extremely happy with the sound levels.

At this point I have pretty much covered everything I can think of and I don't know what else I can report about this setup. It works for us. If we were playing louder and/or larger venues where we needed more power than we might need more. I don't see that happening for us anytime soon though as the venues we play are all about the same size and type. I was planning on grabbing a QSC k8.2 for this but at this point I think I'm just going to ride it out until I find myself running into this issue.

Again, for us it's a matter of the type of music we play - mellow to mid-tempo acoustic covers and originals - and the fact that it's just me on guitar and her on vocals. I think we have found the perfect PA and mixer/preamp/effect pedal combo. I couldn't be happier with the tone but I'm over the moon with the fast and easy setup and super-light and easy portability.
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Last edited by Methos1979; 05-06-2018 at 03:46 PM.
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Old 05-05-2018, 05:58 PM
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Photos, as promised!

All of this...



Fits in this:



This is the AA rechargeables I went with:

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Old 05-05-2018, 06:59 PM
Chriscom Chriscom is offline
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Can't wait for the report! Thanks for the photo.

(I gather there's a mic stand where you're headed.)

Have a great gig!
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Old 05-05-2018, 08:16 PM
lkingston lkingston is offline
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Default Bose S1 Pro, Boss VE-8, battery power = traveling light

Following this with great interest since I am on a similar journey.

Last edited by lkingston; 05-05-2018 at 09:11 PM.
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Old 05-06-2018, 06:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chriscom View Post
Can't wait for the report! Thanks for the photo.

(I gather there's a mic stand where you're headed.)

Have a great gig!
No mic stand - the wife hates them. She much prefers to hold her mic. Sometimes when we're traveling 'heavy' I'll bring one for the few songs I sing but since there's just a couple of those I forgo them when we're traveling 'light'.
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Old 05-06-2018, 10:03 AM
larryjoh814 larryjoh814 is offline
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Methos, you are my hero. Last weekend I played the S1 at La Costa Coffee Roasting, and I really liked the sound with the unit placed on the floor to my side, tilted back.
I tried placing it on a counter next to me, but I found it harder for me to hear and it seemed a bit tinny, whereas on the floor it filled the room. Time to leave the speaker stand at home!
Your journey is fascinating to watch, from your guitar acquisitions to sound reinforcement.
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Old 05-06-2018, 12:39 PM
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Compact is good but where do you do EQ? I'm not seeing it on the Boss unit.
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Old 05-06-2018, 01:07 PM
Chriscom Chriscom is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spook View Post
Compact is good but where do you do EQ? I'm not seeing it on the Boss unit.
The Bose S1 has Bass and Treble (and reverb) on its two combo XLR/quarter-inch channels. (A third mini-plug input for smartphone input and the like does not.)

The Boss VE-8 does have EQ but it's buried in menu/dial reassignments and I can't remember if the OP is one of those brave enough to venture on that quest. On the guitar side, at least, the "Acoustic Enhance" dial and its equally simple "Shape" button that colors the sound in four different modes gives you significant, easy tweaking.
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Old 05-06-2018, 03:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spook View Post
Compact is good but where do you do EQ? I'm not seeing it on the Boss unit.
Yes, like Chriscom stated, the VE-8's EQ is 'buried' (a bad term) in the settings. you basically have to press two buttons to put it in EQ mode and that turns the buttons on the guitar side for guitar EQ and the vocal section of vocal EQ. Highs, mids, lows, low cut, mid freq, mid Q, input sensitivity and noise suppression. Some have stated that they find it too hard to remember. I have found that is not the case for me. And anyway, now that I have the settings on the VE-8 dialed in and sounding great, I have yet to need to change it at a venue anyway. Any final and minor tweaks are easily accomplished on the S1.

Update for today's live use all on battery is up on the top post - enjoy!
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Old 05-08-2018, 05:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by larryjoh814 View Post
Methos, you are my hero. Last weekend I played the S1 at La Costa Coffee Roasting, and I really liked the sound with the unit placed on the floor to my side, tilted back.
I tried placing it on a counter next to me, but I found it harder for me to hear and it seemed a bit tinny, whereas on the floor it filled the room. Time to leave the speaker stand at home!
Your journey is fascinating to watch, from your guitar acquisitions to sound reinforcement.
Lol - thanks, Larry! I have tried the S1 sitting vertically flat and I find I prefer it tilted back. I played around with it outside again today (again with battery power only) and found that the difference in the 'auto-EQ' between the two positions is that sitting flat there is much more low end. When tilted back the lows are dialed back significantly. It makes you wonder how they came up with the various differences.

I was looking in the manual the other day (for battery installation tips which - btw - were NOT present!) and was looking at their interpretations of the different dispersal patterns. They don't go much into what exactly the differences are (which tones are changed) between the different positions but they at least give the various sound dispersion patterns.

So far I like tilted back (vertically) best but up on a chair or table. I have yet to run into a place where I can place it on the floor where it's not obstructed significantly by a bar or patrons. After that I prefer on a stand and then sitting flat but elevated, again on a chair or bar. Last, I prefer on it's side tilted back (like a monitor). I only tried this once on the floor and as with any time I sat it on the floor in any position, it was just too bass-heavy for my tastes, at least in my living room.

For those following the various Bose S1 threads I'm going to post a screen capture of the Bose sound dispersion patterns based on positioning in the next post (as I have to do it from my phone). Note that the S1 makes automatic EQ changes as well as whatever changes are made internally to affect the various positions.
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Old 05-08-2018, 05:38 PM
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As promised, here's the screen capture.

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Old 05-08-2018, 06:25 PM
Chriscom Chriscom is offline
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First of all many thanks Methos for posting that detailed review, it's a tremendous help and I was dying to see how it turned out. I am seriously considering adding the S1 as a smaller-venue companion to my L1 Compact.

I, too, love living AC-cable free even when plugs are available, an option available to me since like you I have a pretty simple setup.

(The reason I asked about the mic stand is that I use a mic stand while playing guitar, and I found a telescoping stand that along with the VE-8, the mic, a small guitar stand, a tray/cupholder attachment and all the cables I need fit into a Pelican 1555 case. That's everything I need sans guitar and sound system--and my main semi-regular gig has the sound system.)

On the VE-8, some people just get along better with menus than others. You may not feel the EQ is buried but I sure do--the last thing I want to think about in the trenches is recalling button sequences and reassigned dial values when all I want to do is cut highs, mids or lows. I just want to see it and do it.

So much so that I'm probably going to sell my T1 Tonematch now that I've test run a Yamaha MG10XU. They both produce great sound but one is easier on my brain.

My approach is also colored by the unreliability of my VE-8. I love it, but soon after buying it, used from a seemingly reputable source, some of the features went wacky and in particular I couldn't consistently get the harmonizer to work properly. Long story short, I had it diagnosed by a certified repair center and they verified the unit was faulty, but also long story short I had to send it back to the online vendor I bought it from, and after some runaround they sent a "new" unit to me. I think they sent the original unit back.

Since I have to periodically factory reset my VE-8 to get everything to work, I'm not going to invest time in tweaking EQ.

Sorry for the digression; I think this is an unusual VE-8 experience. Mucho thanks for your report.
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Old 05-08-2018, 06:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chriscom View Post
On the VE-8, some people just get along better with menus than others. You may not feel the EQ is buried but I sure do--the last thing I want to think about in the trenches is recalling button sequences and reassigned dial values when all I want to do is cut highs, mids or lows. I just want to see it and do it.

So much so that I'm probably going to sell my T1 Tonematch now that I've test run a Yamaha MG10XU. They both produce great sound but one is easier on my brain.

My approach is also colored by the unreliability of my VE-8. I love it, but soon after buying it, used from a seemingly reputable source, some of the features went wacky and in particular I couldn't consistently get the harmonizer to work properly. Long story short, I had it diagnosed by a certified repair center and they verified the unit was faulty, but also long story short I had to send it back to the online vendor I bought it from, and after some runaround they sent a "new" unit to me. I think they sent the original unit back.

Since I have to periodically factory reset my VE-8 to get everything to work, I'm not going to invest time in tweaking EQ.

Sorry for the digression; I think this is an unusual VE-8 experience. Mucho thanks for your report.
No need to apologize for the digression - I believe all points of view are ultimately helpful. I was using a small mixer before going to the VE-8 and it worked great. But it necessitated the need for three additional pedals, four if I elected to incorporate a looper (which I do not).

We have not been pleased with the harmonizer either. We were using the TC Helicon G-XT prior (sparingly) and felt it did a much better job. With the VE-8 you need to be right on top of the mic to hear the harmonies. So if you come off the mic at all (like you need to do when singing louder passages) you seem to lose the harmonies. I'm not sure if this is by design or defect but we haven't cared enough to investigate.

Then there is the looper. Great addition but since we current do not do any looping its basically something there I don't need. Funny that my Mooer Ocean Machine also has a built-in looper so when running full bore setup I have two loopers, neither of which I use or need. But maybe someday, right?

I can certainly understand and appreciate people not wanting to 'delve into menus' for on-the-fly EQ'ing. But I just wanted everyone reading these reviews to know that for me at least, once I've got the EQ set (done at home) I've had no need to make changes at any venue. Any changes needed are done on the S1, most times just being some dialing out of the lows.

But if I did need to do more then it's simply a press of two buttons into EQ mode then the low, mids and highs are right there on three separate dials. I find I prefer this much more than the more in-depth menu system of something like the Play Acoustic. At least it's knobs and not menus on the VE-8!

Anyway, I'm glad that people are getting use from these reviews. The original one I did with the video still gets a lot of feedback from people all over the web/world! I'm getting people commenting weekly thanking me for the effort. I've directed more than a few over here for more feedback.
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Last edited by Methos1979; 05-08-2018 at 06:58 PM.
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Old 05-08-2018, 08:25 PM
Chriscom Chriscom is offline
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We have not been pleased with the [VE-8] harmonizer either.

I have to admit that although I like the harmonizer overall, a tiny bit goes a long way--the more I listen to it, the more processed and fakey it sounds. Just a scent will do. I may investigate other ones. But man the Acoustic Resonance feature salvages the sound of the dreaded Fishman Sonitone in my GPRS1. And the Chorus feature adds variety--I use it for some simple instrumentals. When I play with my keyboards/vocalist duo partner there is usually enough variety + our harmonies going on so I can just bring my Boss AD-2 which is just Acoustic Resonance + notch in a much smaller package.

As for EQ'ing, yeah I'm really glad you mentioned all of that because lots of folks don't know the VE-8 can do all that. Until fairly recently that included me.
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Last edited by Chriscom; 05-08-2018 at 08:30 PM.
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Old 05-09-2018, 12:08 AM
rockabilly69 rockabilly69 is offline
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how long of a show can you do at your typical volume with just the batteries?
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