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This article was originally published in issue #63
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The VRE-8A’s highly-portable moulded enclosure can be simply placed on a desk or table top, mounted on a stand using the integral 35mm top-hat socket or placed on the floor if you’re looking for a small, unobtrusive floor monitor.
Excellent audio quality.
Incredible low cost.
None at this price point.
90W Class D Amplifier
8″ HH Designed Woofer & 1″ Compression Driver
2 channel mixer with Channel gain, Aux in, Mix out and Master Volume
Billed as the ideal compact and portable loudspeaker loaded with essential features. The HH Electronics VRE-8A offers 90 watts of high-performance Class D amplification and an impressive SPL of up to 111dB making it potentially the ideal solution for conference address or instrument amplification. Bob Thomas and Nick Jennison tell us more.
HH is a British brand with a long history. Initially famous for its solid-state guitar, bass and PA amplifiers, it later branched out into PA systems and power amplifiers. HH equipment had a reputation for great sound and great reliability, and you’ll still find a lot of vintage HH gear out there, still working night after night.
One of the latest products to bear the HH name is the Vector VRE-8A Active Speaker System, whose neat and petite lightweight cabinet carries a 90W power amplifier that drives an 8” bass woofer and a 1” compression treble tweeter. Its compact size makes the VRE-8A ideal for smaller situations, and it is flexible enough to cope with classrooms, seminars, presentations, bars and more intimate music venues where high levels of sound reinforcement are not required. The VRE-8A’s highly-portable moulded enclosure can be simply placed on a desk or table top, mounted on a stand using the integral 35mm top-hat socket or placed on the floor if you’re looking for a small, unobtrusive floor monitor,
To enable the VRE-8A to cope with the widest possible variety of users, HH have equipped it with a simple onboard mixer which is augmented by a media player that can replay audio from either an SD card, a USB “stick” or via Bluetooth from a suitably-equipped mobile phone, MP3 player or computer. If your playback device doesn’t have Bluetooth, an Aux In minijack socket allows you to connect a headphone or line output to the VRE-8A using a stereo minijack-minijack lead.
The mixer features a balanced XLR microphone channel (without phantom power), a jack-equipped instrument channel that runs at line level – the keyboard, drum machine or active guitar version of line level, that is – and both are equipped with level controls, but neither have any EQ facilities. There is no level control for the media player or the Aux In minijack, so you’ll have to balance the mixer’s master volume control against the channel level controls to get the balance between, say, backing tracks for a USB drive and your voice and guitar in Channels 1 & 2.
As a small PA speaker, the VRE-8A sounds very good and performs extremely well for its price point. A pair of VRE-8A would make a pretty decent PA for a small gig such as a restaurant where you don’t want something that will drown out the diners’ conversation. The mixer and media player are easy to operate and even someone without a lot of technical knowledge could have it up and running without too much trouble. The HH VRE-8A has a lot to offer its intended users, including good value-for-money, and should definitely be on your audition list if you’re looking for a compact active loudspeaker system at its price point.