Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Fender Passport Portable Sound System Review

Fender Passport Review: PD-150 v. PD-250

I'm a big fan of the Fender Passport portable sound systems. Several years ago, I purchased a Passport Deluxe PD-250 system (pictured in grey). I recently bought the smaller Passport Deluxe PD-150 system (pictured in black), and have the PD-250 for sale.

Since I own both, I wanted to point out some of the major differences between the two systems (PD-250 v. PD-150):
  • Inputs: 6 channels v. 4
  • Watts: 250w v. 150w
  • Monitor outputs: 2 v. 0
  • Weight: 55 lbs. v. 28 lbs.
Beyond those major features, the two systems are virtually identical. Both have a docking connector for Passport wireless receiver, extraordinary feedback rejection, mic / cable storage compartment with latching lid, and Vocal Input Priority (background music level is automatically lowered when someone speaks into the microphone).

For me, the decision to keep the PD-150 came down to one single factor: weight. Let's face it, I'm no Hercules. While I can carry the PD-250 around with one arm, it is difficult to get in and out of my trunk. Plus I hate showing up at a corporate gig straining to carry in my sound system.

Fender also makes an even smaller PD-80. In my opinion, the PD-150 will server you better in a wider variety of situations than the PD-80, and the weight isn't really an issue. Go ahead and get the PD-150 if you can afford it.

My favorite feature of the PD-250 is that all of the cables and mics fit into a built-in storage compartment. So it is truly an all-in-one system. You just stick it in your trunk and go.

Much to my disappointment, everything does not fit into PD-150 storage compartment. You can put some combination of the power cord, two speaker cables, microphone, and microphone cable into the storage compartment - but not all of them. That means I have to remember to carry a separate bag. It's not the end of the World, but the large storage compartment was one of my favorite features of the PD-250.

I'm a little sad to see the PD-250 go, but I'm excited about breaking in the new PD-150. If you are a professional comedian or solo acoustic performer, I highly recommend either of these Fender Passport Portable Sound Systems.

Carrying your own system to gigs ensures that you will have quality sound. It's a small price to pay to guarantee that you will always sound your best!

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