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Review

Turbosound IP2000 Powered Column PA System

Issue #47

Assembling the iP2000 is a simple task as both the lower and upper column modules are equipped with four hefty metal pins that locate them securely in their respective positions.
Bob Thomas

Pros:

Great sound
Simple to set up and operate
Bluetooth remote control and audio streaming
High-quality construction
Good value for money
3-year warranty

Cons:

None

Turbosound iNSPIRE iP2000 Powered Column Loudspeaker

Still can't decide which of the ubiquitous 'PA on a stick' systems to buy? Bob Thomas takes a look at a contender from one of the most respected names in the audio business - Turbosound.

The Turbosound name has been a fixture in the UK pro-audio industry since the company was founded in 1978. Over the years, Turbosound has built up a stellar reputation for its live sound touring products, picking up Queen’s Awards for Export Achievement (in both 1987 and 1997) and for Innovation (in 2012). As with many of the UK’s pioneering pro-audio companies, Turbosound has passed into foreign ownership, first to Italy’s Proel in 2007 and subsequently (in 2012) to the Music group of companies (think Behringer - Ed), where it joined two other iconic UK pro-audio brands – Midas and Klark Teknik.

Designed and engineered in England, the Inspire iP2000 is Turbosound’s take on the 'skinny modular column and sub' form factor that has become extremely popular for applications requiring the use of compact, high-quality, portable PA and music playback systems. The iP 2000’s birch plywood sub features a 12” high-excursion low-frequency driver, whilst its two-module aluminium column carries sixteen 2.75” neodymium drivers and a horn-loaded 1” super tweeter. The system is configured as a four-way - three power amplifiers (utilising Klark Teknik’s Class D technology) are housed in the sub and deliver a maximum total of 1000W across the sub and the two modules via an electronic crossover, with the super tweeter in the upper module being crossed over passively.


Assembling the iP2000 is a simple task as both the lower and upper column modules are equipped with four hefty metal pins that locate them securely in their respective positions. Integral multi-way connectors take care of the electrical connections between the sub and the two column modules. Once everything is together, the iP2000 stands at just under 2.1m tall and weighs in at a total of 30.7kg.

Analogue inputs to the iP2000 arrive via two TRS/XLR combination connectors (Input A and Input B) at +4dBu, which means that you’ll need a mixing console or suitable preamplifier to drive it. Two corresponding XLR outputs (Link A and Link B) output direct copies of their corresponding input signals. Inputs A and B can be mixed together internally using the iP2000’s onboard 3-channel digital mixer, but that mix cannot be routed to either of the Link outputs.

The third input to the iP2000’s onboard mixer comes via the unit’s Bluetooth connection, which allows you to play a stereo audio stream from a suitable Bluetooth-enabled iPad, iPhone, Android or Windows device. Turbosound also provide a free app (available from the Apple Store) that allows full remote control of all the functions of a single or stereo pair of iP Series loudspeakers from an iOS device.

With a single iP2000 system, the Bluetooth stream is summed to mono, however, if you have a pair of iP2000, these can be linked together using Bluetooth. The first system that you connect your Bluetooth player to becomes the Master. The second (Slave) system is then linked to the Master, at which point the Master reproduces the left channel of the stereo signal and the Slave carries the right channel.

The onboard digital mixer is part of the Klark Teknik DSP system that controls the iP2000’s audio performance, setting the operational mode (Music, Live, Speech and Club), the relative input levels, EQ, placement compensation (Corner, Wall or Floor), subwoofer level and basic Setup functions. The DSP also provides dynamic equalisation and sophisticated limiting to ensure optimum performance and to protect the system from being driven into distortion. The DSP also incorporates Klark Teknik’s proprietary Spatial Sound Technology (SST) that takes advantage of the timing difference between sound waves reaching your left and right ears, to help to create a wide, well-defined soundfield in the room.

In use, the Turbosound iP2000 is an impressive performer, delivering a powerful, clean, highly-detailed performance with instrumental, vocal, speech and CD/Bluetooth sources. The DSP system’s LCD screen, rotary encoder, four switches and a simple menu structure make up a simple and effective user interface that enables the user to navigate easily and quickly around it.

Dispersion is well-controlled, and the quoted 120° in the horizontal plane gives a good overall coverage and throw. The iP2000’s overall 38Hz-20kHz performance is extremely impressive – a solid, powerful, well-delineated bass crosses over into a detailed, slightly forward midrange and a clear, crisp high-frequency response that is enhanced by the presence of the horn-loaded super-tweeter. The DSP presets can really help to match the system to the room and the application, giving the user a very good platform to work from.

The Bluetooth streaming worked without a hitch or glitch, as did the Turbo Control remote control app. The app screens, like the onboard LCD user interface, are clear and simple to navigate and operate.

With a single iP2000 system, the Bluetooth stream is summed to mono, however, if you have a pair of iP2000, these can be linked together using Bluetooth. The first system that you connect your Bluetooth player to becomes the Master. The second (Slave) system is then linked to the Master, at which point the Master reproduces the left channel of the stereo signal and the Slave carries the right channel.

The onboard digital mixer is part of the Klark Teknik DSP system that controls the iP2000’s audio performance, setting the operational mode (Music, Live, Speech and Club), the relative input levels, EQ, placement compensation (Corner, Wall or Floor), subwoofer level and basic Setup functions. The DSP also provides dynamic equalisation and sophisticated limiting to ensure optimum performance and to protect the system from being driven into distortion. The DSP also incorporates Klark Teknik’s proprietary Spatial Sound Technology (SST) that takes advantage of the timing difference between sound waves reaching your left and right ears, to help to create a wide, well-defined soundfield in the room.

In use, the Turbosound iP2000 is an impressive performer, delivering a powerful, clean, highly-detailed performance with instrumental, vocal, speech and CD/Bluetooth sources. The DSP system’s LCD screen, rotary encoder, four switches and a simple menu structure make up a simple and effective user interface that enables the user to navigate easily and quickly around it.

Dispersion is well-controlled, and the quoted 120° in the horizontal plane gives a good overall coverage and throw. The iP2000’s overall 38Hz-20kHz performance is extremely impressive – a solid, powerful, well-delineated bass crosses over into a detailed, slightly forward midrange and a clear, crisp high-frequency response that is enhanced by the presence of the horn-loaded super-tweeter. The DSP presets can really help to match the system to the room and the application, giving the user a very good platform to work from.

The Bluetooth streaming worked without a hitch or glitch, as did the Turbo Control remote control app. The app screens, like the onboard LCD user interface, are clear and simple to navigate and operate.

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Wolf Hoffmann

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