The underdog - quality install loudspeakers
We do a lot of what we call “small to mid-sized installs” – to us this means all sorts of venues from shops and commercial premises, to live performances, churches and everything in between. Usually when we say this we’re talking about venues with a capacity from 100 up to somewhere around 1000 people.
For installs like this it’s sometimes hard to find loudspeaker solutions that deliver on the highest sound quality standards without breaking the bank in the way that some of the top brand name offerings can. Also, if a particular solution offers a “platform” (amps, processing and speakers that must be used together) rather than simply a range of interchangeable products, this can prove a huge budgetary issue as the quality platforms more often than not cost big money!
So… on to our dark horse… The RCF C Series
Although the C stands for compact I think that’s a slight push, I mean they’re small considering what they can do but nowadays when you use a word like “compact” it conjures up something seriously small. Despite that one tiny pedantic criticism they are extremely smart looking, neat and tidy boxes with an obviously impressive build quality. Simple, well made black boxes with a quality grille finish and rotatable badge that helps them look at home pretty much anywhere.
So how do they sound?
Great, and very unlike most loudspeaker offerings I’ve experienced from RCF.
My major criticism of other RCF speakers is their “aggressive” sound. Now, this is one of the great things about RCF in a live environment, on tour or in a packed music venue, when you really need the upper, mid and high frequencies to cut through the room noise. But in install applications this can be a problem, they just tend to sound a bit harsh. But not the C series.
The C series sound very relaxed and smooth even when reaching the upper end of what they can output. Lovely full sound and great detail. The fact that there’s so many models with different dispersion characteristics is a big win too. There’s always a full range speaker to meet requirements.
The final win here is price
The range starts at around £720 for a single 8” loudspeaker and peaks at £1,680 for the big 15” model… And those prices include VAT. Now though that may sound like a pretty big sum to many of you it really isn’t when you consider the reliability, quality and simply great sound you’re getting for that money. Easily up there with speakers costing way over those figures. On top of that, these are professional installer products. What that means is that installers like us get an OK trade discount and that enables us to offer the consumer deals rather than getting locked into price wars with big online, soulless retailers.