BC-X

Overview

BC-X Rig & Round Top ThroneAVAILABLE EXCLUSIVELY THROUGH OUR ONLINE SHOP

The BC-X features identical build quality to our flagship BC2, BC2rm and Gigster systems. It has around 75-80% of the power and performance of its bigger brothers, but with features simplified even further than the Gigster to help achieve a substantially lower retail price. The BC-X is a very tidy package with much reduced size, and a dedicated 13” /33 cms all-vinyl round throne top. The BC-X engine measures only 8” x 7.5” x 4” (20 cms x 19 cms x 10 cms).

Don’t be deceived by its diminutive size! The BC-X can pack a serious punch if needed.

Available in both 115 volt (North America and Japan) and 240 volt models.

The BC-X is a silent bass drum monitoring system which allows you to feel, hear and experience your bass drum (and other sound sources if required) like you never felt or heard them before. It consists of our brand new and unique TT1 Precision Devices transducer, built into our own Patented throne top, and uses bone conduction to deliver powerful, precise and nuanced reproduction without sound.

The BC-X will give you great connectivity to your drum kit whilst playing and recording.

Although at Porter & Davies we designed the new BC-X with the semi-pro working musician in mind, it is also a fabulous tool for the touring professional due to it being ultra-compact, with both the engine and throne top fitting into the single bespoke All-In-One Hardcase (optional extra).

It is literally designed as a ‘plug in and play’ system and is astounding with both acoustic & electronic drums.

At Porter & Davies we have used our expertise to maintain product integrity without compromising on quality. Keen to bring a value product to the market at a smart price, we have simplified the packaging, stripped away the non essential features, and brought to the market the ultimate streamlined form of the Gigster.

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Details

BC-X RigThe BC-X has the same build quality as the BC2 and Gigster and many of the same components. Here are the differences:

  • The BC-X has no integral flightcase. However, like the Gigster it is completely encased in its own steel ‘exoskeleton’, and has tough rubberised ‘bumper’ end corner pieces and a sturdy ‘roll bar’ protective carrying handle.
  • The BC-X is not voltage switchable, so there are two models: A 115 volt unit for North America and Japan, and a 240 volt model for most other countries. The 240 volt model either comes with a UK or EU style plug.
  • The BC-X has no phantom power selector. However, a condenser mic (such as a Shure Beta 91) will work perfectly if the output from the BC-X is fed to a desk with phantom power supply (as is the norm).
  • The BC-X has a combined single mic/line input socket. The mic input is via an XLR lead, whilst the line input is via standard 1/4″ jack.
  • The BC-X is a two unit system:
    • The dedicated round all-vinyl throne top which is notably smaller than our regular BC2 and Gigster thrones (only 13″ / 33 cms across). The BC-X throne top contains a brand new dedicated TT1 tactile transducer made exclusively for us by top UK company Precision Devices. Please note that the BC-X is only available with a round throne top.
    • The BC-X ‘Engine’ which contains all of the electronics: – Amp, preamp, inputs and outputs, protection circuitry, and volume and tone controls. All this in a box that measures only 8” x 7” x 4” (20 x 19 x 10 cms).
  • BC-X and BC2 ComparisonThe BC-X is an amplified Tactile Generator Monitor System which transmits the full bass drum signal and sound (or any other drum) physically up through the drum stool. This signal is registered mainly through bone conduction (see the Theory page), and the result is far more sophisticated than a simple ‘thump’. All of the tone and intricacies of the bass drum sound and impact are felt and heard internally.
  • The BC-X will deliver up to 75-80% of the power of the Gigster and BC2 systems.
  • If a mixing desk is being used, you can feed in (via the line input rather than the direct mic input) other sounds such as toms, overhead mics (for a full kit “picture”), and bass guitar.
  • The handmade BC-X throne top is designed to accommodate 7/8” diameter throne bases as used by Roc n Soc, DW, Gibraltar, Tama, Ludwig, Premier, Yamaha, Pearl, Custom Percussion, and others.
  • For those who like to sit low, we also supply our very own extra-low throne base (please see the BC-X Bundles section in the Online Store).
  • Please note that BC-X throne only comes in the round style. There are no saddle or custom options. If you require backrest / pneumatic hardware enabled throne tops, these are only available as custom orders with the Gigster, BC2, TT6 models.
  • The drummer has full control over power and intensity immediately to his/her side, and the system is 100% consistent, night after night, regardless of acoustics, room size, etc.
  • The BC-X, just like the Gigster and BC2, offers unparalleled response speed (0% timing lag) and sensitivity, so will faithfully reproduce all of your playing dynamics: It will respond to long notes (beater off) as well as short notes (beater on), depending on drum dampening, tuning and playing style.
  • It will TRANSFORM your playing experience: The drummer and drum kit become ‘one’ so your groove will be stronger than ever.
  • The BC-X unit is even more compact than the already tiny Gigster, but has the same efficient use of power: It needs under 130W to drive is as opposed to around 1200W required by a well known competitor.
  • Pros who swear by the BC2 and Gigster are now also using the BC-X for international gigs, where the tiny and light BC-X rig can tuck away inside a suitcase, or ‘thrown’ into the aircraft hold in the dedicated all-in-one Hardcase.
  • Here is the BIG advantage for fully amplified gigs where IEMs (In Ear Monitors) are NOT used: No bass drum(s) thumping through big monitor subs to pollute the stage sound. – The kit can be miked up more ambiently, and the sound engineer hasn’t got to roll all the heavy bottom off the other mics. The toms can now breathe properly and sound huge.
  • If you use IEMs, the BC-X completes the sonic experience by providing the physicality of the bottom end which otherwise cannot be replicated.
  • If you don’t use IEMs, never again will you struggle to feel and hear your bass drum or compromise your technique, sound and timing by hammering away fruitlessly.
  • The BC-X is simply UNBELIEVABLE with MIDI kits: Real power, real presence, and you’ll lose that disconnected feeling. The ENTIRE electronic kit feeds into the unit (if chosen to do so) and therefore you don’t just get the bass drum, but the entire kit. Even snare rolls are felt and heard.
  • BC-X Rig & Bass DrumCheaper tour/stage spec: No subs required for the drummer.
  • Whereas most wedges don’t cut it for the bass drum, they are fine for bass guitar (and of course all the other instruments and voices). The bass guitar sound can now come through your monitor crystal clear without having to compete with the bass drum. Volume levels will drop without any power compromise.

Spec

BC-X by Porter & Davies ‘Engine’:

BC-X SpecDimensions:
20cm x 19cm x 10cm (8″ x 7″ x 4″) inc rubber bumpers

Weight:
3.00 Kg

Cables supplied as standard:
2M power cable – fixed (variable: UK / EU / USA)
2M Speakon NL4 throne link cable. Twin Axial, 140 x 0.15mm, OFC.

Power requirement:
230vAC (115vAC [USA etc] )
130W peak

Self-selecting combination XLR/JACK input:

Plug in an XLR for:
Mic in: 600 ohm electronically balanced P2 hot XLRF

Plug in a JACK for:
Line in: 10K ohm unbalanced tip: hot

Mic out: Hardwired parallel to mic in. XLRM balanced P2 hot

Line out: Hardwired parallel to line in. XLRM unbalanced P2 hot

Input gain:

Mic gain 0dB to +60dB infinitely variable

Line gain -20dB to +10dB infinitely variable

Signal Present indicator led, green: -30dB
Signal Peak indicator led, yellow: 0dB
Signal Limit indicator led, red: +12dB
Max output: 130W RMS / 4ohm 0.05%THD 20hz-18khz +/- 2dB.

BC-X by Porter & Davies Throne top:

Round Throne Top:
33cm across x 15cm deep
Weight: 4.00 Kg

Connection between Engine and Throne:
Speakon NL4 to Speakon NL4 : (supplied)

Instructions

The Porter & Davies BC-X (Patented) is available in two models: A 115 volt version for North America and Japan, and a 240 volt version for most other countries. The 240 volt model comes with either a UK or EU plug.

The BC-X comes with the following:

  • BC-X Engine (either USA 115 volts, GB 240 volts or EU 240 volts)
  • Throne top (13” / 33cm round all vinyl only). Mounted inside the throne is a Porter & Davies TT1 Tactile Transducer, made exclusively for us by legendary British speaker builders, Precision Devices Ltd.
  • Speakon NL4 connector cable.

You will also need the following, as they are NOT supplied with the BC-X.

  • The throne base is NOT included, but our thrones will accommodate 7/8″ diameter throne bases as used by Gibraltar, Roc N Soc, Yamaha, DW, Tama, Pearl, Ludwig, Premier, Custom Percussion, and others.
  • If you like to sit low, we recommend our own extra-low throne base.
  • Bass drum microphone and connecting XLR cable.
  • Mic stand or Kelly Shu internal bass drum mount (highly recommended). If you wish to connect some e-kits to the BC-X (via the line input) you will need a regular jack to jack cable.

Basic set-up:

Put the throne and engine in position.

Plug in the bass drum mic XLR lead or a feed from the monitor board/desk to the dual purpose input socket. Select Line Input mode by using a 1/4” jack lead or convert an XLR cable with an adaptor (not provided), then plug in the throne via the supplied Speakon NL4 connector lead, and the power lead. Please see the section below for detailed instructions on using the Line input.

Turn the large ‘Master Level’ knob fully of (anti-clockwise). Switch the power on.

Play the bass drum at your max power and adjust the ‘Input Gain’ knob until the green and yellow LEDs are showing a strong signal. Back of a little if the red ‘Peak’ lights up [at this stage you will feel nothing through the throne]. This sets the basic input level for your playing style, drum, and whatever microphone you are using. You may need to set this near maximum (depending on the mic, its sensitivity and position) and how hard you play.

Gradually turn the Master Volume to your desired setting.

Avoid setting of the larger red ‘Clip’ warning light as this means you are overdriving the unit.

Instructions:

There are two ways to connect the bass drum microphone to the BC-X system:

  • Directly via the ‘Mic’ XLR input.
  • Via the ‘Line’ jack input from a mixing desk / board, either with a 1/4” jack cable or with an XLR cable using a 1/4” jack converter cable into the dual purpose input socket.

‘Mic’ input:

This is the most simple and efective method. The BC-X Engine is equipped with an internal hardwired passive microphone signal splitter, which means that the signal from the microphone is unafected by the controls on the Engine. The signal will go through to the PA perfectly even if the Engine is unplugged. The sound techs do their thing, and the drummer controls his/her precise desired setting. We recommend that sound techs are instructed to use the ‘Mic’ Output as if it were the actual microphone XLR socket.

The BC-X is equally happy with both dynamic and condenser microphones.

To use a condenser rather than a dynamic mic, you will need to be connected to a desk/board which can feed it the required 48v phantom power.

‘Line’ input:

The ‘Line’ 1/4” jack input has a number of applications:

  • It will also take a feed from a monitor desk/board where you can then apply EQ and gating if required.
  • The Line input will also allow other signals to be routed through the BC-X (bass guitar, snare, toms for instance).
  • It will allow the connection of electronic drum kits to the BC-X system. The BC-X Line socket accepts both balanced and unbalanced inputs.

Tips & Suggestions:

A very important point is that posture has a great deal of infuence on how the BC-X performs. You will get so much more power from the system with a good posture than from a curved sitting position.

The BC-X reproduces the sound of your drum with remarkable accuracy.

A badly tuned drum with old heads will not give you the same impact and tone as a well tuned drum. You get back what you put in.

Bass drum size is irrelevant. You will get similar levels of power from an 18 x 14 or a 24 x 18 if they are set up well.

Microphone positioning will afect the response of the BC-X in the same way as it alters the out-front or studio sound. A great all-round position (for maximum power and impact) is approximately 4 inches (10 cms) away from the beater impact point, and at a slight angle. Having the mic deep inside the drum will also greatly reduce external sounds (such as a loud bass guitar) from entering the BC-X.

If you have a very loud stage, some gating of the bass drum mic will remove the stage sound from being picked up by the BC-X.

A dampened drum will give you a very direct thump, whereas if your bass drum is very boomy, this length of note will be transferred back to you via the throne. TIP: If you like a long open sound but want a more direct ‘kick’ sensation in your throne, try placing the mic (or a separate one) outside on the batter side of the bass drum nice and close to where the beater strikes.

If you play with both ‘beater on’ and ‘beater of’, the BC-X will faithfully reproduce the diferent efects of these techniques (depending on bass drum set up, of course).

Try the BC-X in the recording studio: It is an astounding recording aid. You may wish to use a separate mic, especially if the recording mic is way outside the drum.

Driving the BC-X from the monitor desk/board:

  • Assign a separate output to send a mix to the engine, in the same way as you would for a wedge/monitor sub (this will most likely be an XLR going into a female XLR to male 1/4” jack converter cable)
  • Set the master output of this aux at 0dB (most masters are infnity to +6dB or more). This output needs to be nice and hot, because the BC-X Engine has its own volume control, unlike a wedge or sub power amp, which is always set at full volume.
  • Mix in appropriate levels of drums, bass, keyboards, or whatever you want to monitor through the BC-X system.

Output EQ:

  • Most monitor desk/board outputs have assignable EQs. You can enhance the effect of the BC-X signal with a little EQ.
  • For the bass drum, we recommend setting the HP flter (or a tight shelving EQ) to around 40Hz (depending on personal preference), as you don’t get any focussed efect in the seat from frequencies below this, but they will draw a lot of power (which will make the ‘clip’ LED light earlier)
  • For more thump, the area around 80Hz is very potent, and the frequencies up to around 160Hz are all felt physically.
  • Set a very narrow band (High ‘Q’) 6db peak and sweep the frequency between 70-100Hz until you find your personal chest cavity resonance (the bass drum ‘hit’ sensation). You will now find you can reduce the master volume and retain the best effect from the unit.
  • These settings also work wonders with any other signal fed into the BC-X, i.e. toms, snare, bass guitar etc.

Please remember that at Porter & Davies we are always here to help, so PLEASE contact us if you have any questions.

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