Smoko #3

Solar power: I do love solar power. It’s good stuff. It runs our fridge, lights, washing machine, computer, TV and all that stuff with a minimum of fossil fuels involved. But it has limits, detrimental to my well being and in need of resolving.

Bass: I do love bass. In Brisbane, I own half of a 12kW, bass heavy, UK style reggae sound system along with Champion Sound director and Dubwise Productions producer Chris Jay (look up  We use it for running events and parties.  It has limits too, but mostly imposed by authorities rather than technicalities…police don’t love a bassline.

Solar vs Bass: Our entire solar system is only about 2kW and so would be flat out (and probably incapable of) running even a 6th of that sound system for any amount of time – the batteries would be flat in minutes. (Monkey Marc I believe owns a solar powered sound system (for events), but I assume he has $100k worth of batteries backing it up).  And herein lies the problem.  With not enough power, how am I to get some bass ina the place?  I don’t have an answer yet (comments/suggestions?), but what I do finally have is a record player.  Since April I have not had one and my records have been staring at me, through the cupboard door, with hurt and sulky expressions.  So today we found one in a 2nd hand shop.  It is probably a 1960s model and has 2 tinny arse speakers hard wired into it – nary an output socket in sight – but for $45 we figured it was worth it.  And it is, but barely.  Got to hear some music, and did rejoice, but boy was it tinny.  It’s obviously a high-end 1960’s player: it has separate bass and treble knobs and everything…but I don’t think they’re actually connected to anything. Sly and Robbie sounded like a string quartet, though if I turned the bass right up and treble right down the bass violin got a bit of an echo to it that perhaps in the 60s would bring the coppers running, but out here just makes the kookaburras laugh.

Anyway, it’s a bit of a come down from 12kW to 20w, and I know some people who may read this will be laughing at me.  But I figure the solar can handle 100w or so (mostly plenty for home use), so we’ll be on the lookout for an amp and another record player (one with phono leads) down the track…and maybe a big fat 20kva generator for musical emergencies.

One of my sound systems
My other sound system


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