Mackie DRM Speaker Review
Travis here from Hollywood DJ and yes I was at NAMM 2019 and got to hear these killer Mackie speakers in person. I’m an audio engineer and I work at Hollywood DJ so… got to attend the private screening of these new speakers!
The DRM Series are the new high-end concert speakers from Mackie. A huge step up from the SRM series and BST series, really a whole different magical beast. The really cool part of this new series is the Mackie DRM12A which is a concert array style speaker!
There was a ton of hype at the show…and yeah, they kicked ass. The Mackie DRM room had 8 of the monstrous DRM18S 2000 Watt Subs and 8 of the DRM12A Speakers split in an array on each side. They also set up the freestanding Full Range units: DRM212, DRM215 and DRM315.
They cranked up the system to max and it was loud, clear and simply impressive. The pressure level in the large room was freaking crazy but it wasn’t distorting. I don’t know how Mackie did it, it just sounded great. I’m a bit of an audio snob having been a studio and live sound engineer for years and these speakers seriously impressed me.
I’m assuming the event center had pretty decent power but these speakers (apparently) really shine in poor and noisy power environments. Each unit has an advanced type of power conditioner to eliminate hum and buzz but more importantly to adapt to the available incoming power!
Yes, if you have low power these speakers will adjust so you’ll get the most out of them even if your AC power source isn’t great. That’s kind of a miracle…and something I really appreciate having set up in hundreds of clubs over the years and fought off buzzes and wondered “why the bass didn’t sound right” even though I’m running the same bass rig in a different club…yeah, power matters.
What I really want to do is try these speakers out on a commercial generator for a ski hill or concert in the park, that would be the ultimate test! If you’ve done an outdoor show using a generator with the DRM series please message us or give us a call, I want to hear your story and will get you store credit for it!
These are perfect for mid-sized venues that want great sound, period. These speakers are built right with plywood enclosures covered in a protective coating.
They feature a super flat EQ but this can be adjusted to fit your application using the onboard dashboard software. The software takes a little getting used to but all the features you want are there including EQ, Voicing Modes, Array Modes for the DRM12A, Crossover, Alignment Delay, and Amplifier Temp monitoring.
If you are thinking of using these for DJ Speakers, you will rock the house with loud clean sound in almost any venue. For a larger venue just grab another set and daisy chain em. The array design is really flexible for modular fleets if you have a dj company with many dj's. If you have a club, bar or concert venue and want killer sound the DRM series will absolutely deliver the goods. You’ll pay double for other concert array style speakers and you won’t get double the sound. Mackie delivers value, every time. I may be a little biased being a Mackie Powered Speakers fan and having personally purchased over 30k worth of Mackie gear over the years….eeek. But I do love these speakers and Mackie has a really versatile and great sounding speaker design here.
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “Overall, the Mackie DRM212 is a great speaker solution for the audio professional. While the smallest in size of the DRM Series, the DRM212 packs a punch and can deliver the goods. Reproducing crystal clear sound at high volumes with minimal distortion, the speaker can withstand high level inputs, and deliver high output without breaking a sweat.”
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “The DRM Powered Series includes Mackie’s proprietary Power Factor Correction technology that compensates for power fluxuations. I attempts a few tricks to mess with the average-at-best power conditions of the warehouse I used for testing, including running animated neon signs and turning industrial equipment with heavy draw on an off to test output and clarity of the speakers, but couldn’t crack it. Depending on the venue, your mileage may vary.”
“Mackie has a reputation for building quality, road-worthy gear at affordable prices, and the DRM Powered Series loudspeakers I evaluated didn’t deviate from this path. High headroom, large volume live sound at an incredibly affordable price is the name of the game, and I’m thoroughly impressed that a club, auditorium, or place of worship can bring professional sound to their audience for only a couple of thousand dollars. Even removing the accessible price from consideration, the Mackie DRM Powered 12a loudspeakers stood out as quality solutions to mid-sized venue audio needs.”
-Chris Loeffler at Harmony Central