If you’re even a remotely picky audiophile—and let’s face it, guitarists are absolutely as picky as they come—then chances are you own at least a few pieces of gear by Bose.
Whether it’s home theater systems, noise canceling headphones or a PA system for a singer/songwriter, Bose is a true champion of the discerning ear: they actually have a 70,000 square foot building in Framingham, Massachusetts that gets a minimum budget of $100 million annually just for audio research and development!
Though Bose is probably most famous for their home theater systems, wave radios, and high-end luxury car stereos, since the 1970′s Bose has also dedicated a portion of its research budget to developing sound amplification for performing musicians.
In the area of audio equipment, one of the most game-changing product lines Bose has introduced has been the L1 family of PA systems—now in their second generation of production.
Bose and Live Music: The L1 PA System, Bass Module and T1
The L1 PA system was first introduced as a system that re-thinks the sound quality and physical characteristics of the typical club PA system. The L1 is intended to do a few awesome things for live musicians that other PA’s just don’t.
First, it can shape a musician’s tone from an onboard module, similar to that of a modern effects processor. Secondly, its design is intended to broadcast sound in a multidirectional fashion that fills up a room evenly without dead spots. And finally, it takes the bulk out of a traditional PA—the unit consists of a linear speaker tower roughly 6-7 feet high and a separate bass module similar in size to that of a common home theatre system.
Not only that, but the L1 is designed to be able to add to itself in any arrangements live musicians might need. For example, a singer with an acoustic guitar can easily fill up a decent sized room with a single L1 and a bass module, while a DJ might want a single L1 and two bass modules. A full band might want separate L1s for the bass player, guitarists and singer. Also, you don’t need a road crew to set it up. A single guitar player could easily carry an entire L1 system on his/her shoulder in the included duffle bag-like case with the bass module in the other hand.
Setting up an L1 in a 200-person theatre, we found there to be no dead spots and minimal sound fluctuation as we walked across the scape of the theatre, likely due to the multidirectional positioning of the speakers within the tower.
And get this, in addition to sounding amazing, pointing a microphone directly at the system yielded absolutely zero feedback until placed about an inch away from one of the speakers…try that with your PA system!
Check out this video from the people at Bose for more information: