Legendary rock band Journey recently completed a series of concerts with JBL Professional VTX line arrays powered by Crown Audio I-Tech HD 12000 amplifiers. The VTX system was deployed for five performances, including two with Rascal Flatts (with a system provided by Sound Image) and other dates in Lake Tahoe, Aspen and San Francisco.
According to Jim Yakabuski, Journey’s front of house engineer, the band has few stipulations when it comes to its sound. “Journey is pretty hands-off for the most part,” Yakabuski explains, “although they do ask me to keep the low end off the stage, so I try to keep the subwoofers from folding back onto the stage and keep the stage nice and clean.”
Journey’s latest tour started in June 2012, touring with Clair Global and the I5 loudspeaker system. This summer, Journey didn’t carry PA as there were many festivals and “one-off” shows, enabling Yakabuski to listen to a variety of line array technologies on the market.
“I have to say that loudspeaker technology has really come a long way the past few years,” he states. “The VTX system was definitely one of the best we used this summer and we had five great shows with it. It wasn’t a problem at all keeping the low end off the stage with VTX.”
“The VTX system has a very nice clean and crisp high end,” Yakabuski adds. “The whole midrange to high-end seemed really coherent and held together. There was also plenty of power, so we had no problems there.”
According to Yakabuski, a major advantage of VTX is how good it sounds right out of the box. “We used the JBL HiQnet Performance Manager software as well, which allowed us to take the low-end frequency response all the way down in the main V25 loudspeakers,” he says.
The five shows with the VTX system were a success. “[Clair System Engineer] David Quigley and I would like to thank [Plus 4 Marketing members] Keith Erickson and Jim Mathews, Alchemy Concert Systems [who provided the audio system in Aspen], as well as [Technical Support Lead, Tour Sound, JBL Professional] George Georgallis. They all put a lot of effort and time into making sure the system was set up properly. It makes it so much easier.”