Keyboard Amp Vs PA (Which One to Choose)

In the world of musical instruments and components, getting confused is really easy. There are a lot of things to understand before getting anything. Just like that,

getting confused between PA and keyboard amplifiers is very common.

So, which one should you choose between keyboard amp vs pa. 

The main differences between a keyboard amp and pa size, power, and price. If you’re planning to use it in the house, an amplifier is perfect. But for a larger crowd, PA systems are great. But amplifiers are portable and easy to use. Where a PA system outputs better quality sound. 

There is more information to consider when you are in the market for a PA or amplifier. So why don’t you jump into the article!! 

Brief Comparison

Both the keyboard amplifier and the PA system are for outputting audio signals. But there are some key differences between a PA system and an amplifier. 

There is a huge difference between keyboard and guitar amp as well.

Source: rollingstone.com

In the table below, we have mentioned the key differences between amps and PA. so, for a glance, you can check them out.

Factors Keyboard Amplifier PA System
Operating Voltage Level20-400 watts20-400 watts 
PortabilityEasily portable Slightly difficult
Made Out ofWood, Metal and PlasticWood, Metal and Plastic
Output QualityAdequate or Better Than Keyboard SpeakersBetter Than Keyboard Amps and Speakers
Ease of UseReally Easy, Just Plug and PlayHave to Hook up a Lot of Different Parts
Shapes Wedge ShapedRectangular Shaped
FeaturesLess Versatile More Versatile 
Price$200-$1000 $300-$2000

These are some of the major elements of PA and keyboard amps. Even though there are some similarities between PA and amps, there are differences as well. 

In the next segment, we have given a detailed description of each element. So read along. 

Extended Comparison

Now that you know all the key differences, let’s talk about them in detail. What sets amplifiers and PA systems apart?

Operating Voltage

There are a lot of different types and sizes of amplifiers. Keyboard amplifier speakers can be found from 20 watts to 400 watts or more.

If you are looking forward to using your amplifier at home, 20-watts to below 100-watt amplifiers are perfect. Amplifiers which are above 100 watts can be too powerful for the home. If you are playing for a crowd, large amplifiers come in really handy.

Peaks and RMS are important things to notice when getting an amplifier. Peak is referred to as the peak wattage the amplifier can go up to. But that doesn’t mean the amplifier will always function on that watt level.

RMS means root mean square. This indicates the level of wattage at the amplifier can function at a constant rate. But manufacturers of amplifiers don’t market the amplifiers showing the RMS. 

A 200-watt RMS can have a 600-watt peak. So look at the RMS, because using the amplifier at the peak wattage can damage the amplifier.

On the other hand, we have PA systems. The fun fact is, that amplifiers are part of the PA system. You can use the same amplifier in the PA system as well. So check the operating voltage of the amplifier when you get the PA system as well. 

There are differences between acoustic amp and portable PA

Here in the voltage game, it is a draw between the PA and amps. Since PA systems use the same amps you would normally use. 

Portability

Transportability is a major issue when it comes to deciding on PA and amplifiers. Amplifiers are easy to transport. An amplifier is the only thing you need to carry alongside your keyboard. 

Also, there are different sizes of amplifiers in the market. You can get yourself a portable one to carry. And have a good or bigger amplifier in the house.

But on the other hand, PA systems are not that portable. A PA system consists of a lot of parts and components. You even have to carry an amplifier too. 

Other parts of the PA system consisting of a keyboard, speakers, mixers, cables, and mics. Although, if you are using active speakers, you don’t need to get an amp. 

Active speakers have amplifiers inside them. But it’s never a good idea to mix passive and active speakers. Such as jamming 4 and 2 ohm speakers. The best keyboard speakers in the market can also make a huge impact on your music experience.

If you fancy, you can also try external speakers for the keyboard.

So in this case, the amplifier wins.

Source: musiccritic.com

Build Material

Musicians love their instruments. But that doesn’t mean they don’t use it. So the instruments and other components need to be made out of strong materials. 

Amplifiers are made with wood. In some places, you will find metal shields over the amplifiers, like in the corner. But the mainframe of the amplifier is made out of wood. Amplifiers are meant to be transportable. 

On the other side, PA systems are made with similar materials. PA system is a sum of a few parts. Parts such as the keyboard, amplifiers, speakers, cables, and mics. And same as the amps, these are made with similar materials. 

It is a draw between the PA system and amplifiers here as well. 

Output Quality

The output quality depends on the type of amplifier you are using. There are a lot of great-sounding amplifiers on the market. But not all are the best sounding. 

If you are looking for keyboard amps to buy, check out the below once. There are a lot of amps in the market, but not all are the best. 

These are some of the best amps in the budget for your keyboard. Though there are other best keyboard amps for live performance.

But, amps can be really powerful, but a PA system gives you better control. A PA system has more power and options for you. It gives you the ability to mix and match the music. The mixers will give you more control over the sound output. 

So, a PA system is a clear winner here. 

Ease of Use

When it comes to how easy it is to use a system amplifier is the clear winner. Amplifiers are compact and just plug-and-play devices.

You just need some cables to connect the mic and your keyboard and you are good to go. Amplifiers can even connect multiple devices. 

On the other hand, you might need some instructions to set up a PA system. It is harder to set up a full PA system. Since the PA system consists of a lot of components, it can seem difficult to what goes where.

Here the amplifier is a clear winner. 

Feature 

Features come to a great play when it’s about musical instruments. But more features mean more complexity.

Amplifiers are easy to understand but pack fewer features. Although there are amplifiers that have a lot of features.

The PA system has a lot of features that can be hard to understand. But a PA system will give you full control of the sounds if you set up the PA system appropriately. 

Source: sweetwater.com

You can use a separate mixer that has different channels. Or you can get an amplifier that has a mixer built into them. Though, getting a separate mixer can be better. There are a lot of good mixers for a PA system.

Here, the PA system is a great winner. 

That’s everything about the differences and similarities of PA systems and amplifiers. 

Final Verdict

Now let’s decide which one is the best fit for you. The purchase of a PA system or an amplifier depends on what you are buying it for.

Amplifiers are great for use at home or in small places. Amplifiers are easy to carry and take with you on a long trip. Amplifiers are also cheap in comparison to a PA system. 

On the other hand, a PA system outputs high-quality sounds and has more versatility. Although the PA system consists of a lot of parts and components. It’s not easy to carry a PA system with you. PA systems are also expensive. 

But you can buy a PA system over a period of time. Where you can either buy an expensive or cheap amplifier. 

Also, depends on how much flexibility and usage you want. The PA system will give you more control. Where amplifiers are easy to use. 

FAQs

What are the Studio Monitors?

Studio monitors are used by professionals. Monitors output a flat sound with a wide range of frequencies. You can use monitors as speakers for your keyboard or Piano Amplifier. Monitors are powered by stand-alone amplifiers. 

Can I Use a HiFi Speaker System for the Speakers?

Using your HiFi speakers in a PA system is easily possible. HiFi speakers can output a wide range of sound. Make sure the speakers have the necessary plugins to connect to the keyboard or amplifier. 

What to Look for When Buying a Keyboard Amplifier?

Make sure the amplifier’s sound satisfies you. Figure out what you want to use the amplifier off. Or where you want to use it. See how portable the amplifier is, also the types of outputs and inputs it has. 

Endnote

That’s everything you need to know about keyboard amp vs pa. The main differences are size, power, and price.

Make sure you know what you want, on that basis figure out which one to get. 

Happy jamming!!

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