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Sound Equipment Hire & Audio Solutions

PA stands for “public address”. A PA system is a speaker system powerful enough to address the public at events, concerts, conferences, ceremonies, etc. 


There are many different formats of PA systems ranging from portable pairs of powered speakers to larger sound systems with multiple speakers arranged in stacks. The size and format of a PA system is customisable, and speakers and components can be added and removed as necessary. 


Here’s everything you need to know about hiring a PA system.



What is a PA audio system?

PA systems are speaker systems designed for public use. There’s no real formal definition – a PA system can be any speaker system sufficient for producing loud audio. 


Some PA systems contain two simple powered speakers, which is probably the smallest system available, whereas others contain multiple speakers arranged in stacks with separate amplifiers and a mixing desk. 


There are many types of PA systems – there’s no single format.



What’s included in a PA system?

A PA system contains multiple components, such as:


  • Speakers, which can either be full-range or two-way speakers, tops, or subs. 
  • Amplifiers for powering passive speakers. Some PA speakers are active and don’t require external amplification. 
  • Mixing desks, which are required for multi-speaker setups. 
  • Processors, limiters and other accessories, which may be required for more complex setups.


PA systems may require mixing desks

PA systems may require mixing desks



A PA system contains everything you need to run audio at an event. But, of course, the exact specifications of the setup and what’s included depend on the event in question.


Example 1: Small party or wedding event

This event is a small party or wedding event with around 50 people. For an event this size, the PA might feature: 


  • Two to four full-range speakers like the Audiotechnik Q7
  • Small console or mixing desk
  • Playback (e.g. DJ decks) and/or mics, if required 
  • One to two monitor speakers, if there are to be performers on stage (e.g. a DJ)
  • Stands, cables and hardware

Example 2: Medium-sized music event

This event is a small music event for 50 to 100 people with live music. For an event this size, the PA might include:


  • Four to eight full-range speakers with two subs like the Audiotechnik Q-Sub
  • Two to eight monitor speakers 
  • Medium-sized mixing desks like the Yamaha LS9-32
  • Stage box
  • Playback (e.g. DJ decks) and/or mics
  • Stands, cables and hardware


What to know if you’re hiring your first PA system

PA systems come in many different shapes and sizes. There’s no one-size-fits-all option. 


If you’re unsure about what you need for your event, Chaps PA will listen to your event size, requirements, attendance, performances, etc, and come up with an appropriate package. 



Different events require different PA speaker systems


For example, a small party will require a different system than a bass-heavy DJ night! Getting the system right is crucial to the event – if the system is too quiet, the audio won’t be audible or have the impact required. 


On the flip side, if the system is too big, the audio might be too loud for the event.



How to figure out the requirements for your PA system

If you’re looking to hire a PA system, you’ll mainly need to consider how many speakers you need. 


Most small-to-medium-sized events of 50 people or so require just two full-range speakers. From there, you’re probably looking at four or more speakers with a mixture of full-range speakers and subs. Larger events might benefit from elevated line array speakers. 


As a rule of thumb, we recommend the following wattage systems for different events:


  • Wedding or birthday with 25 to 50 people – 1000w
  • Wedding or birthday with 50 to 100 people – 2500w 
  • Wedding or birthday with 100 to 200 people – 3500w
  • Music event with 100 people – 3000w 
  • Music event with 200 people or more – 5000w+


It’s worth noting that it’s not just speakers that you need for a PA – there are also mixing desks, playback devices and other components to consider. This varies from event to event. 


For example, a conference might require a simple mic setup, whereas a music event with a live band will require multiple mics, monitor speakers, and a mixing desk. 


Ultimately, the answer is that it depends!


That’s why it’s important to work with a PA hire provider that really knows their stuff, like Chaps PA!



How much it costs to hire a PA system 

The cost of hiring a PA system varies depending on the specification of the system. Chaps PA has a full price list here


With our reasonable day rates of £30 for full-range professional speakers like the Audiotechnik Q7 and Q10 and £75 for the compact Yamaha LS9-16, it’s possible to assemble a powerful PA system for just £250 or so, including cables and hardware. 


You can add playback devices like DJ decks and a mixer for just £150, and mics start at a very reasonable £5 per day. 


All in all, Chaps PA delivers professional audio equipment at a very reasonable rate for both small and large events. Contact us for an exact quote on what you need. 



Chaps PA hire packages

You can find details of our PA hire packages here.

Here’s a rundown of the packages we offer:


  • Party sound equipment hire: Affordable party packages, from £200. 
  • Small conference sound hire: For small conferences in conference halls, with mics, from £500. 
  • Medium conference hire: For public address to hundreds of people in large open spaces. Price on request. 
  • Live band audio hire package: Live music events have different requirements. Costs range from approximately £700 for everything, including speakers (front of house and monitors), mics, mixing desks, stage boxes, cables and accessories. Includes sound engineering costs. 
  • We also offer large live band and touring packages which draw upon our very best components and hardware. Price on request. 


If you’re looking to hire a PA sound system, contact Chaps PA, and we’ll gladly assist you!

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