TC group gets bought out by MUSIC group – What this means for your next PA system

By Tyler M. Bryant

Before you read this, check out the article (I’m just restating the comment I left there).

As someone who is familiar with a range of Bugera amps, Behringer Soundsystems, and TC-Helion live-performance equipment, I am quite interested to see the implications of this acquisition.

TC-Helion makes what I believe are hands down the highest quality, industry standard Harmonizer and Auto-Tune pedals for live performance. However, their brand is known as anything BUT cost effective for those of us with non-corporate budgets. The amazing, unparalleled vocal effects (which are computed to harmonize diatonically all voices to instruments, which are in turn all run through the system) are aspirational purchases for most bands and musicians without national followings or lucrative record deals.

However, I am QUITE familiar with Behringer live sound systems. I can tell from experience that this brand IS known for being cost-effective (any of their P.A. packages will inevitably be cheaper to any similar-spec competitor). However, with being known as cost-effective comes the risk of being perceived as “cheap” by consumers, and the fact that many of their mixing board components are known to just burn out or frequently clip validates this preconception for many consumers. Behringer puts a lot of bells as whistles on their mixers with low price points to entice small-time musicians and DJs. I do personally feel that those augmentations only add so much legitimate value to the product if it isn’t of the highest quality.

This acquisition is really interesting to me because the inevitable result, in my mind, is going to be PA systems with auto-tune and harmonizers. Interestingly, I really don’t know what to expect in terms of quality. On the one hand, TC-Helion makes extremely useful and valuable digital effects processors that I think no musician would dare to call “cheap.” On the other hand, Behringer seems to often under-deliver on the digital effects that come with their sound systems (a disappointment coming from the same company that apparently makes the sexy sounding Bugera amplifier brand). Hopefully, they companies can streamline their technologies effectively.

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