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Author Topic: VRX 932 over VRX 918 - Harsh?  (Read 911 times)

frank kayser

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VRX 932 over VRX 918 - Harsh?
« on: June 01, 2019, 10:49:53 pm »

Hi Folks,
Today I did the BE thing on the smallest of three stages equipped with one VRX 932 over VRX 918 per side.  They had my old friend, A&H MixWiz stageside.  Dumb it down, as there was no full-time fader-pusher assigned to the stage.  After not mixing on one for many years, it still responded like a good friend.


Even before my band was up, the tops seemed quite harsh, and not particularly clear or clean.  When my band was up, I was able to get a decent mix and cleaned up the vocals a bit.  The harshness continued, though somewhat mitigated.  Call it my error.


After the band, I went to the mid-size stage, with two VRX 932 over two VRX 918 per side.  Console was a  Yammy CL5 for the house, with a very experienced engineer, mixing a band I know well.  Separate monitor engineer on what may have been the same console. Those tops also sounded quite sawtooth-like.   Not overly bright, just not smooth at all. Jagged.


Does my assessment square with anyone else's experience with these tops?
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David Sturzenbecher

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Re: VRX 932 over VRX 918 - Harsh?
« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2019, 11:15:34 pm »

Hi Folks,
Today I did the BE thing on the smallest of three stages equipped with one VRX 932 over VRX 918 per side.  They had my old friend, A&H MixWiz stageside.  Dumb it down, as there was no full-time fader-pusher assigned to the stage.  After not mixing on one for many years, it still responded like a good friend.


Even before my band was up, the tops seemed quite harsh, and not particularly clear or clean.  When my band was up, I was able to get a decent mix and cleaned up the vocals a bit.  The harshness continued, though somewhat mitigated.  Call it my error.


After the band, I went to the mid-size stage, with two VRX 932 over two VRX 918 per side.  Console was a  Yammy CL5 for the house, with a very experienced engineer, mixing a band I know well.  Separate monitor engineer on what may have been the same console. Those tops also sounded quite sawtooth-like.   Not overly bright, just not smooth at all. Jagged.


Does my assessment square with anyone else's experience with these tops?

VRX leaves much to be desired?   Yeah... this record is skipping...
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frank kayser

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Re: VRX 932 over VRX 918 - Harsh?
« Reply #2 on: June 01, 2019, 11:47:30 pm »

VRX leaves much to be desired?   Yeah... this record is skipping...
Oops... Seems there has been many a comment written about the VRX series, now that I searched. 
Mea Maxima Culpa for opening old wounds... :-[
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Matthew Knischewsky

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Re: VRX 932 over VRX 918 - Harsh?
« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2019, 12:45:51 pm »

Hi Folks,
Today I did the BE thing on the smallest of three stages equipped with one VRX 932 over VRX 918 per side.  They had my old friend, A&H MixWiz stageside.  Dumb it down, as there was no full-time fader-pusher assigned to the stage.  After not mixing on one for many years, it still responded like a good friend.


Even before my band was up, the tops seemed quite harsh, and not particularly clear or clean.  When my band was up, I was able to get a decent mix and cleaned up the vocals a bit.  The harshness continued, though somewhat mitigated.  Call it my error.


After the band, I went to the mid-size stage, with two VRX 932 over two VRX 918 per side.  Console was a  Yammy CL5 for the house, with a very experienced engineer, mixing a band I know well.  Separate monitor engineer on what may have been the same console. Those tops also sounded quite sawtooth-like.   Not overly bright, just not smooth at all. Jagged.


Does my assessment square with anyone else's experience with these tops?

Frank do you know how the 932s were powered? Passive or bi-amp? These boxes do not get a lot of love around here BUT there's no reason why you can't get a decent mix happening without any special treatment -provided the components are working properly and any DSP tunings are in good taste, AND that they're used within their limitations.
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frank kayser

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Re: VRX 932 over VRX 918 - Harsh?
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2019, 04:13:08 pm »

Frank do you know how the 932s were powered? Passive or bi-amp? These boxes do not get a lot of love around here BUT there's no reason why you can't get a decent mix happening without any special treatment -provided the components are working properly and any DSP tunings are in good taste, AND that they're used within their limitations.
I noticed an amp low in the rack - two pilot lights, but did not look at what else was in the rack.  I did not look at all at the subs at all.  System on the small stage was set up as mono.  I'm *assuming* one channel both tops, using the built-in xover, and one channel both subs.  I could be very wrong.  The cabinets all looked very good, and did not appear abused at all.  Subs were on fitted matching plastic pallets.  The speakers were not being pushed hard - there was a long walkway between the rows on tents, and the stage was set up to project across the walkway, so maybe 30-40' max between speakers and the tent displays.


A fairly large regional sound co. had the contract for all three stages.  I did not see *exactly* what was on the main stage - some type of vertical "hang?" no curvature. Maybe six or eight boxes.  Avid console.  As I was not working that stage, I did not have my "sound guy" ears on or eyes open. The band was doing Airplane's "Someone to Love" so I was listening to the singer and texting to locate my contact.  Did not return to that stage.


I was in contact beforehand with the mid-sized stage operator, who also had the small stage under his management.  As I recall, he mentioned there was an issue with one of the subs - only one working.  Whatever was wrong, the double bass sounded just fine and smooth.


I did get a decent mix, and the band kept quite a number of folks standing in the hot sun listening - so I'll claim a decent mix and overall sound.  However, I found the speakers sounded rough; not smooth.  As I said, I'll claim that fault, as I was at the controls.


It was when I heard similar rasping noise from the mid-sized stage, with 2x per side,  completely unaware of how the system was powered.  I would have assumed to hear better product than what I came up with, as a much superior console, and a more experienced operator was running this setup.  Still raspy, razzy.  Not an ice-pick-in-the-forehead sound, more like a buzzsaw, maybe at the crossover.  I'm not sure anyone, other than someone listening critically, would have noticed.


Folks seem to like them because their customers like them, and they seem to produce lots of income for the company.  Not many claim first choice as something they personally like to listen to.  I'm guessing JBL hit an uneasy sweet spot.


frank
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Paul G. OBrien

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Re: VRX 932 over VRX 918 - Harsh?
« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2019, 09:52:37 pm »

Still raspy, razzy.  Not an ice-pick-in-the-forehead sound, more like a buzzsaw, maybe at the crossover.  I'm not sure anyone, other than someone listening critically, would have noticed.

Yep that is the characteristic VRX sound and it doesn't seem to matter if it's the passive or powered version. I don't know what JBL did to make them sound that way but none of the other small format CC arrays that I have heard sound like it.. they're all much smoother, but I bet the JBL system is more common out in the wild.
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Dave Guilford

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Re: VRX 932 over VRX 918 - Harsh?
« Reply #6 on: June 02, 2019, 11:49:53 pm »

Yep that is the characteristic VRX sound and it doesn't seem to matter if it's the passive or powered version. I don't know what JBL did to make them sound that way but none of the other small format CC arrays that I have heard sound like it.. they're all much smoother, but I bet the JBL system is more common out in the wild.

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Tim McCulloch

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Re: VRX 932 over VRX 918 - Harsh?
« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2019, 01:38:40 am »

Yep that is the characteristic VRX sound and it doesn't seem to matter if it's the passive or powered version. I don't know what JBL did to make them sound that way but none of the other small format CC arrays that I have heard sound like it.. they're all much smoother, but I bet the JBL system is more common out in the wild.

The "ice pick in the forehead" (Frank Zappa) was a JBL sonic signature for 50 years.  It's not present in their newer HF drivers.  Color me "un-sad". ;)
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John Halliburton

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Re: VRX 932 over VRX 918 - Harsh?
« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2019, 09:49:23 am »

The "ice pick in the forehead" (Frank Zappa) was a JBL sonic signature for 50 years.  It's not present in their newer HF drivers.  Color me "un-sad". ;)

VRX is on my "least favorite top" list.  More like a rapid fire nail gun aimed at your head.


John
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Matt Vivlamore

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Re: VRX 932 over VRX 918 - Harsh?
« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2019, 02:30:28 pm »

If bet the harshness is coming from using the wrong HF selection switch.

The VRX rig has been around for almost 15 years, there is alot of Love & Hate with this rig.  Out of the box without the proper DSP settings, itís less than desirable; but throw some basic Harmon DSP settings and the rig smooths out.

I have started working at a brand new venue with a brand new VRX rig, which is being processed by BSS and powered with Crown.  Each show its slowly getting better, couple tweaks here and a couple tweaks there.
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