Question about DBX Driverack-Pa Eq/Speaker Control System System

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We have a dbx Driverack PA unit with a Crown CDi1000 amp in our church. Recently, we starting having problems with the output to our main speakers dropping out. We found (by accident) that if we unplugged a microphone while it was hot, causing a "pop" in the system, the sound came back. Any ideas?

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Check the speaker wires coming out of your amp. Chances are you have a problem with a speaker wire and this is just a coincidence. I say this because the same thing happened to me during a live show and I about had a heart attack. We lost the front of house for about 15 minutes while I tried to troubleshoot the Driverack, the board, and everything but the speakers and speaker wires. The cables were a recent purchase and were premium grade with light wear so I mistakenly ruled them out. It was intermittant so it took me a while to figure out. Now I understand that that's the weakest link in the chain and from now on I start there and work backward through the chain (that is, if all sound is cutting out).

Do you use banana plugs (two metal pegs sticking out of a plastic rectagle) coming out of the back of your amp? There are little screws inside the holes on the back of the banana plugs. Those can vibrate loose, especially if they're just factory tight. Get a little standard screwdriver and tighten them down. That will probably solve your problem.

Okay, wait a minute -- could be one more thing. You mention that the loud popping can be heard. Do you have any gates turned on? Most compressors have gates. Check your compressors to see if you have your gates turned up too high. A gate set too high would allow the loud pop to go through to the PA but would cut off everything low to mid-volume.

I guess you can see that I don't think it's a problem with the Driverack. I don't work for dbx or anything, I just think these other things are far more likely than a problem with the unit.


Posted on Feb 06, 2010

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