|NORTHRIDGE, California – Demonstrating the rising global popularity of JBL VERTEC® line arrays for the world’s most challenging live-performance events, Brazil-based Gabisom Audio Equipment provided a massive VERTEC line array system at Rock in Rio, the world’s largest music festival. The first in two series of shows, Rock in Rio Lisbon featured performances by Lenny Kravitz, Bob Dylan, Bon Jovi, Metallica, Rod Stewart, and Linkin Park. The second series of shows in Madrid featured Bob Dylan, Franz Ferdinand, Chris Cornell, Neil Young, Shakira, The Police, and Amy Winehouse.
In both locations, Gabisom deployed a JBL VERTEC system with four array locations for the main (World Stage) system. A total of 120 VT4889 large-format line array elements and 60 VT4880A Ultra Long Excursion subwoofers were deployed in the main suspend arrays. The main system consisted of four arrays across the front in the normal L/R (front), LL/RR (outfill) configuration.
In a unique twist, however, each array consisted of three separate hangs: dual VERTEC VT4889 full-range hangs, separated by a VT4880A subwoofer hang in the middle. The main left and right arrays had two columns of 18 VT4889 line array elements and one column of 18 VT4880A arrayable subwoofers each. Outer LL and RR columns had two columns of 12 VT4889 elements and one column of 12 VT4880A subwoofers. Each group of the three arrays was driven by three separate signals called Band, Vocal, and Sub. This assisted in creating sound that was portrayed by system operators as effortlessly powerful and clear in a festival where the sheer size of the venues demanded something beyond the standard PA.
Peter Racy, Gabisom Audio Equipment’s Chief Engineer for Rock in Rio, explained, “The main PA was set up in a non-traditional and unusual manner, which we call ‘side-by-side.’ It was non-traditional for line array systems because of its mammoth size, and also unusual because it was intentionally designed to have a greater amount of acoustical output than usual.”
The system’s power and fidelity was confirmed by “Big Mick” Hughes, known for his high-level expectations as longtime FOH mixer for Metallica. “The VERTEC system for Rock In Rio was fantastic…it was dead powerful,” he noted. “It was perhaps the largest line array system setup I’ve ever had the pleasure of mixing this band on. The 15-inch loudspeakers in the JBL line-array rig work particularly well for the band’s guitar-based sound. We achieved spectacular results.”
Tony Szabo, System Engineer for the European leg of Bob Dylan’s tour, was another professional onsite who had a positive experience. “With Peter and Valter [Silva] in charge at front-of-house, and JBL’s new V4 DSP presets loaded in the rig, the show certainly sounded good,” he stated. “We really didn’t have to do too much EQ at all. All in all, it was a really big PA that looked good and sounded good. What more can you ask for?”
“Gabisom is a highly-experienced concert sound company with a broad and diverse inventory. Their decision to use their VERTEC line array system for such an event is a statement unto itself about VERTEC’s rider-friendly acceptability,” said David Scheirman, Vice President of Tour Sound, JBL Professional. “Rock in Rio not only marks the convergence of some of the most talented performing artists in the world, but it’s also a gathering of some of the industry’s most accomplished and knowledgeable live sound professionals. JBL is honored to see our speaker system products selected for this demanding, high-profile application.”
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