Bose L1 Model 2 vs F1 system with 812 speaker and F1 subwoofer

Hello! I own the L1M2 and I am thinking about buying the F1 system!

I've been using the Bose L1 Model 2 for over a decade now. It's pretty unbeatable for most solo acoustic shows (me singing while playing an acoustic guitar). I've also used it as the main PA for some full band shows (loud enough in front of us that we didn't need monitors), depending on the layout of the place. What I've found with the L1M2 is that it puts out a very even coverage of sound, but it doesn't really push much air. In other words, I'll usually use a regular 12" or 15" speaker if the place I'm playing at needs sound to go further and through a decent amount of people... For example, if a bar runs the length of a place, and I'm on one end of the bar trying to get the sound to reach the other end through almost a "hallway" of people either sitting at the bar or standing in the area behind people at the bar. Or, if we're outside a ways away from the building, and need to get the sound to reach into the building through the open doors facing us. I've heard pretty good things about the F1 system with the 812 speaker on top & the F1 subwoofer on the bottom. My guess is that it would push more air than the L1M2, which would be really good for certain outdoor band shows where I think the L1M2 struggles. And if need be, I could always use the L1M2 on stage for both a monitor and to cover the area between the F1 system speakers that would be on opposite sides of the stage. 

I never bought a B1 bass module for my L1M2... Instead, I've always used a passive 15" Peavey speaker, and it works well. I'm wondering if the B2 module would give me more bass. I don't need more bass for my solo shows, but sometimes my speaker just barely keeps up with what I want/need for the bass guitar & the kick drum when using the L1M2 as the PA for the full band. Is the B2 strong enough to handle a decent amount of bass for the bass guitar & kick?

Lastly, is there a rough estimate guide to how many people the L1M2, and the F1 systems can each handle for an event - for both indoor & outdoor? I've heard that the F1 system (two 812's & two F1's) can do 300-500 people, but I've also heard some people say that they wouldn't attempt crowds over 300 with them. I feel like 500 might be possible/fine if you put the 812's up high on trips to shoot a lot of the mids & highs above the tops of the crowd's heads, with the bottom of the speaker pushed in the J position to stop hit those in front. Unless you're higher up on a stage above the audience, then you wouldn't need the troops, just the built in rack. 


Country: USA 



Hi Super Michael,

Welcome to the forum! Thanks for joining us.

Both systems should easily cater for audiences of 500 people. A key difference between the F1 812 and L1 Model II systems is the F1's flexible speaker array which can be changed to suit the venue and give you more control over where sound is projected. When the array position is changed, the loudspeaker’s internal EQ also changes accordingly.

This article gives some information on the difference between the B1 and B2 bass modules. I can't comment as to the performance of the Peavey subwoofer, but you'll likely find the F1 offers a bit more heft in the low end compared to the L1 Model I & B1/B2 combo. 

Hope this helps!

Hi, i have a similar situation sometimes.

I have had my 2 L1mk2's with B2's for 11 years and gigged a lot with them.

I use them for world/devotional music up to 400 people. Not with trad drum kits.


I also have Yamaha DXR 15's and subs for up 500 people for kit/bass/guitar bands.


I just did the sound for 800 people (world music) using Martin audio CDDlive 15's as tops and Yamaha DXS 18 XLF's as subs with the L1's as rear speakers behind the audience to gently reinforce the sound. 

The Martin CDDlive 15's are another level, so is the price £3200 per box!! They have 110 degree dispersion. SO much headroom. And they do sound sweeter than the Yamaha DXR's.


Back to your scenario. (EDIT, a Bose F1 812 could be better than my idea below of a DZR10,12 or15)

I love the 2 L1mk2's. But there is no way they can cater for 800 people, I should say here i use them as FOH. 

I want the spread of 180 degrees as our events often set the stage up along the long wall of a rectangle, better for crowd performer intimacy. 

I have been thinking of adding to the L1's, a good quality 10,12 or 15 inch speaker to throw further. Like a Yamaha DZR 10,12,15. These are very powerful and have a clean sound.

So, setting up the L1 tower right behind the DZR.

My only concern is interference patterns from the 2 different speakers.

If this isn't an issue i think this will save me from having to spend 1000's on a whole new system. 

If i was gigging every weekend to make it worth while i would be tempted in a whole new system, but with CV19 the work load is low.

The DZR10's are £750. My friend who has a pro function band raves about them.

He says they are way better than the DXR15's. We both have them and for the price the DXR's are amazing.

So, what do you think?

L1's to spread the sound nice and wide, and of course the silky sound we all love, plus the forward power and longer throw of a quality 10,12,15 inch DZR?