I play in a small local band in my city - mainly Latin and pop rock music. We would like to perform in a quiet street corner somewhere around town. I predict about 20-30 listeners standing around at any given time, about 3-4 meters away from the band.

How much and what type of amplification would you recommend for the following setup?

  • Electric Bass (obviously needs an amp)
  • Acoustic Guitar
  • Vocals
  • Saxophone player
  • Cajón player (with a cymbal or foot shaker)

Please try to keep the budget as low as possible.

  • Specific recommendations for equipment are off topic, so your concerns about budget aren't relevant here. I don't know if we have enough info to answer this. How many singers? How loud are the vocals? Is there singing and sax playing at the same time? Have you all played without amps before at practice? Does it sound ok? Commented Aug 20, 2016 at 18:39
  • Powered from batteries or mains electricity? Commented Aug 21, 2016 at 18:11
  • We can plug into the main power grid Commented Aug 21, 2016 at 18:13

2 Answers 2


The main question I see here is "Acoustical Guitar". Steel string rhythm guitar is likely to work fine without amp, half-acoustic obviously not, finger-picking style and/or Nylon strings are likely to drown easily.

Once you have more than the bass guitar (which does not really compete much with the other instruments' frequency ranges) amped, it's likely that you'll be better off also amping the voice since otherwise the "blend" in the common frequency range will fall apart between amped/non-amped.


Street corners are noisy especially if there are cars & traffic nearby. My guess is that acoustic guitar and voice will have a hard time keeping up and so would really benefit from some amplification.

Small portable line arrays like the Bose L1, Fishman Solo, JBL Eon one, Turbosound Inspire, etc. work quite well in this type of application, but they may not qualify as "budget". You can go cheaper but you will have to give up on sound quality, convenience, etc.

  • Actually we have a location that is really quiet, so outside noises won't be a problem. The location has 2 concrete walls and a roof, so acoustics are OK. Commented Aug 21, 2016 at 18:16

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