PA systems have been around for many years. As long as people need to be heard by large crowds, PA systems will exist. They are frequently seen in school auditoriums, small bars, churches or even for public meetings in open areas. They are also referred to as sound reinforcement systems. The difference between the two is not very clear. Sound reinforcement systems are mostly used for live music performances while PA systems, as per definition, are used to address an auditorium. From a technical perspective, there is not much of a difference between the two. A PA system can also be used as a sound reinforcement system in certain conditions if it is powerful enough.
Even if PA systems may look like regular sound systems with a microphone, they cannot be used to listen to music. The speakers used are specially chosen for wide distribution of sound and the bass is not very loud. For a regular person, an affordable small venue PA system should be fine. The ones that need a system for a large hall will have to spend much more money. The extra price comes from the amplification of the speakers and the drivers themselves.
Best PA Systems in 2023
For our list, we picked 10 different PA systems that are suitable for small venues. This means that they are affordable and very easy to setup. To keep things short let’s jump right into our list of the top 10 best PA systems in 2023.
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10. Fender Passport Conference PA System
Fender is probably the most popular brand when it comes to guitars but they also make rather decent speakers. Their Passport conference PA system is an ideal pick for small to medium-sized audiences. As the name states it is meant to be used for conferencing. It has a 175-watt speaker system with a five channel mixer and mic input. The system does not include a microphone. It does, however, have an interesting design that allows the user to attach the speakers to the mixer so that it is easier to carry.
9. Pyle PPHP1049KT Powered Bluetooth PA Active Loudspeaker with Microphone
Pyle PPHP1049KT is a great little system for the ones that need an indoor PA speaker. It is a self-powered system with 15-inch subwoofers and a built-in amplifier. The speakers have a peak power of 1000 watts. It has a clamp system that allows for both speakers to be connected so that they are easier to move around. The system can also be used to listen to music and it does not include a microphone. It can read audio files from a USB drive and it supports playback over Bluetooth.
8. Pyle PWMA1090UI Wireless and Portable PA Speaker Sound System
Pyle PWMA1090UI is a great PA speaker sound system for the ones that have a limited budget. It is quite powerful for such a small system and it is more than suitable for a medium-sized room. The peak power of the speakers is 800 watts and has a built-in battery that offers about 3 hours of playback. For the kit, a remote has been included. As a bonus, it comes with a Lavalier headset and a wireless microphone.
7. Pyle PWMA170 Dual Channel 400 Watt Wireless PA System
The Pyle PWMA170 is one of the more affordable devices on our list that offers decent quality without having a steep price tag. It looks like a classic amplifier and it offers plenty of features. It has a microphone input, guitar input and plenty of audio controls for the main channel. The speaker has a peak power of 400 watts which is not that much but it does include a small remote and even a wireless microphone.
6. Rockville RPG122K Dual PA Powered Speakers System
Rockville RPG122K comes as a complete PA system that has a wide range of applications. It is quite loud as it offers 250 watts RMS. The speakers have a built-in amplifier and include a microphone. In terms of features, the system has a built-in FM radio, SD card reader, and a wireless remote. The kit is not very expensive and it is very easy to set up. It includes all the required cables and two speaker stands.
5. LyxPro SPA-8 Compact 8″ Portable PA System
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LyxPro SPA-8 is a portable PA system with a single yet powerful speaker. The system offers 100 watts RMS which is good enough for a single speaker and should be loud enough for a small to medium room. It was designed for indoor use and comes with a few extra features. The system has an SD card reader, USB input, Bluetooth support, and a built-in equalizer. Unlike other systems, it does not include a microphone but it supports multiple types as it has XLR input, AUX, and RCA.
4. Pyle PWMA200 Compact & Wireless Microphone PA Speaker System
Pyle PWMA200 offers great value for the money. It is one of the most inexpensive PA systems on our list and comes with everything needed. The kit includes a small portable speaker with rechargeable batteries, a microphone, and a wireless receiver for the microphone. It also supports a regularly wired microphone and it includes a charger for the speaker. The system is not very loud but it should be good enough for small audiences.
3. Pyle Pro PWMA50B 50 Watts Portable Waist-Band Portable PA System
Pyle Pro PWMA50B is one of the most compact products on our list. It was designed to be portable and affordable. It comes with a complete kit that includes the speaker, a small headset, and a strap. The speaker is battery-powered and can be recharged. The microphone quality is decent and the small speaker is loud but not very loud. According to the manufacturers, the speaker has a projection range of up to ½ mile and can be fully charged in about 6 hours.
2. Hisonic HS120B Lithium Battery Rechargeable & Portable PA System
Hisonic HS120B manages to be a rather reliable portable PA system. It is surprisingly powerful for its size and can run for several hours on a single charge. It is a 40-watt speaker system with a wireless microphone system and sound controls on the top. The model is quite inexpensive but delivers great sound quality and it is quite loud. It includes a one-year warranty and works straight out of the box. The only thing that needs to be done is to charge the device.
1. ION Audio Tailgater iPA77 Portable Bluetooth PA Speaker with Mic
ION Audio Tailgater iPA77 is a great pick for the ones that do not want to spend a lot of money. It is inexpensive and well-made. The model is battery-powered and supports audio over Bluetooth. According to the manufacturers, the speaker has a built-in battery that offers playback for up to 50 hours. It has an FM radio, auxiliary inputs and it includes a microphone. The speaker also works as a power bank and can charge any smartphone or mobile device.
Picking a Decent PA Speaker System
There is no general rule when it comes to picking a decent PA system. They are different based on the quality of the drivers, the amp, and the microphone included. Also depending on their power, they might be suitable for certain audience sizes. To keep things simple we have highlighted below the most important aspects.
- Power: The power of a PA system determines how loud it can be. There is no point in getting something like a 1000-watt system for a small room and a 50-watt system will not be enough for a large audience.
- Features: For a regular person, a PA system is not something that is used on a daily basis. If it has extra features it may serve other purposes as well. Some models have a built-in radio or they can play mp3 files from an SD card. There are many more features to choose from.
- Included accessories: Not all PA systems include a microphone or a remote. These things are nice to have or they can be purchased separately in most cases with the exception of the remote.
- Battery powered or not? Battery-powered models use less powerful speakers and tend to be cheaper. It depends on how loud the PA system needs to be. A very powerful system will never be powered by a rechargeable battery.