How to add volume to PA

We recently got booked at a larger outdoor venue. We’ve never played in the environment before and we think we might need more volume. Right now, we use two JBL 610 speakers for our PA. (We’ve played in an indoor space with large enough for three full sized basketball courts with no problem, but outside is different.)
We have a guitar that goes direct through a Line 6 helix. My bass am is 800 watts. I use the volume from the cabs as well as the DI. Our drums are miked.
My question (finally): if we want more volume, would it be better to add subs to the 610s, get additional speakers, or buy larger speakers and stick with just two?


I wish I had a good answer for you here.
This would be a good question for a sound engineer forum / PA forum.
Anyone out there do lots of live outdoor PA gigs?

I’ve had this handled for me in my touring career, and the rigs were always different.

If you have a chance to check out the venue or any shows there before you play, that would be ideal - get a chance to see what’s happening there.
Or ask the venue what they usually run / who they hire for sound when they need to hire someone.
I bet you could find some good info there.

If other bands are playing you could also share one big sound system solution?

We do have some sound expertise on this forum… @DaveT might be able to help out on this :slightly_smiling_face:

It’s also important what shape your audience footprint is. Loudspeakers have a throw pattern like a flashlight beam and different speakers make different patterns. How wide is the first row and how far away from the stage is it. How wide is the last row and how far away from the stage is it.

That 610 gets pretty friggin loud. The way to get it to throw farther is to mount it higher up. You can turn it up louder to throw to the back row without blasting out the front row.

If you need a larger rig and like JBL the VRX line array has a nice wide coverage pattern, more than 110 degrees horizontally, and has the ability to throw farther because it is a line array source. The volume level drops off half as fast as you get farther away.


That 610 has a horizontal coverage angle of 110 degrees and vertical 60 degrees. If that doesn’t throw to the back row, I think you are definitely in VRX array territory.

You could consider the VRX918 sub to use with what you have if the 610s can throw far enough.

If you give me the audience shape info I can tell you how high you have to get the 610 in the air and how loud it will be for the front and back rows.


They say this cat @DaveT is a bad mutha-shut-yo-mouth


Oh, yeah.

If anyone is still following this, we were out at a festival today that had the perfect sound system for anything larger than what a VRX stack would handle. Cabinets high up. 3 stacked Nexo line array modules. To get longer throws, more can get stacked up. They stacked two pretty good sized subs in the center.


Thank you, everyone. We’ve visited the venue a few times when they’ve had music, and everyone uses what they use in the indoor venues they play.

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