Power Requirements

If we’re providing our own sound system for a small venue (e.g, bar or patio), then our complete set-up can usually run off of a single AC wall outlet, provided that the outlet is capable of providing 15 amps of current at 120V with no risk of tripping a circuit breaker.  If this is not  the case, then power should ideally be provided from two or more outlets on at least two separate circuit breakers. The outlet(s) must be located within a 30 foot radius of the back edge of the stage area.  Otherwise, the client is responsible for ensuring the availability of a heavy duty extension cord(s) long enough  to bring power to within 30 feet of the back edge of the stage.

If we are bringing in a pro sound company, which is very likely for weddings and/or larger or outdoor venues, then power requirements is usually greater than indicated above. Occasionally, the sound engineer will want to tap directly into the power panel and use his own breakers.   Unless otherwise informed, please assume the following:

  • At least one dedicated 15A circuit for the band instruments and lights;
  • Two dedicated 15A circuits (or equivalent) for the sound system, especially in larger venues requiring more volume.

Important note: The power requirements described here assume that the circuits being used by the band are not shared with other significant electrical loads! Especially electrical cooking, heating, or major lighting equipment draws large amounts of power. If you plug these into the same circuits used by the band, there’s a good chance the circuit breaker will trip right in the middle of the performance, and there will be an unplanned and awkward intermission.

The Sundogs are not responsible for interruptions of the performance due to tripped circuit breakers!

Warning:  To avoid hazard of electrical shock to performers, all outlets must be properly grounded and have standard three-prong receptacles.  Any evidence that outlets are not properly grounded (e.g., even mild shocks from instruments or microphone stands) will be grounds for discontinuing the performance. If the Sundogs are performing outdoors where there is any threat of significant moisture (e.g., damp grass) or rain, then the outlets made available must be equipment with GFI breakers. Most outdoor outlets are on GFIs. When in doubt, it is possible to use extension cords with built-in GFI breakers – please discuss with the band whether these might be needed.

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