Recently, we had a chance to sit down for a virtual chat with one of our good friends, Victor Chavez from JMaz lighting. If you didn’t see that video, you can check it out here. The subject? The highly-anticipated and long-awaited JMaz Versa Flex Bar. We first got a sneak peek back at DJ Expo 2021, but now the finalized version is ready to go. Here at The DJs Guru, we think it’s a game-changer, and in this JMaz Versa Flex Bar review, we’ve got all the details on this awesome new light.
What is the JMaz Versa Flex Bar?
Lightbars aren’t a new concept, and JMaz knew that. In fact, Victor came right out and said “we didn’t want a light that was dated.” Instead, JMaz wanted a bar that would be adaptable and flexible for years to come. In its base configuration, the bar has RGB perimeter lights, cool-white strobe SMDs, and warm-white inner LED beams. Additionally, on the outer edge are a pair of compact 25W moving heads with a color and gobo wheel.
But what makes the bar “flex” are the many different ways this light can be used. The included mounting bracket can be mounted in either side of the bar. Want to mount the bar with the heads facing down? No sweat. Need to set a unit on a table or stage with the heads facing up? Simply switch the bracket around or remove it. JMaz also offers a clamp attachment to allow for hanging the bar from trussing. Keep in mind that JMaz doesn’t include a pole for mounting the unit. However, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing – not every DJ needs a separate stand, so we don’t see a need to pass that cost on to everyone.
JMaz Versa Flex Bar Review – The Heads
Moving heads attached to multi-effect lights have always suffered from being a little weak. The moving heads on the Versa Flex Bar, however, don’t seem to have this issue in the slightest. The beams appear strong and easily stand out, even in an illuminated room. Within each head is a color wheel with 8 colors + white. While they come stock with a single lens, JMaz is going to offer a 3-facet prism as well for even more customization options.
The included remote has a LOT of functionality – much more than any we’ve seen included with other lights. For example, instead of cycling through presets with a single button, the remote has 12 numerical buttons to quickly access your favorite program. Want to completely black out the light? Just hit the “stop” button. You can jump right back into the same program as well by simply hitting the “play” button.
Each of the different components of the Versa Flex Bar can be activated individually. The button labeled “heads” will turn on the moving heads. The button labeled “cool” activates the SMDs. And again, each different lighting component has 12 presets accessed via the numerical buttons. The dimmer button on the remote allows DJs to program some nuance into their light show. So many DJs simply turn on their lights the whole night at the same brightness. There’s no variety, no flavor. Now, DJs can dim their lighting for a cocktail hour or dinner without blinding guests.
JMaz obviously spent time choosing and programming the built-in shows. They even went so far as to make sure that whenever the moving heads turn on they automatically go to white. This avoids the heads activating in a different color that may clash with your current scene. Thoughtful design like this makes it evident that the folks at JMaz are in tune with their customers.
In a little surprise for viewers of the live stream, Victor revealed the awesome new case for the Versa Flex Bar. After all, if you’re dropping a decent chunk of change on a new light it’s worth protecting, isn’t it? Made of durable foam with a smooth, sturdy zipper, the case is perfectly molded for the whole bar. There are dedicated spots for the moving heads and even space for cables and accessories. Speaking of cables, the light comes with a 10-foot (not the usual 3 or 6) power cable that will reach all the way to the floor. Altogether, the light and case weigh about 39 lbs, which is definitely manageable.
JMaz Versa Flex Bar Review – In Use
So how can a DJ get started using the JMaz Versa Flex Bar right away? The easiest route is to just hit “auto” on the remote. Now, the light will automatically enter program 1 for the warm, cool, and RGB LEDs along with the moving heads. The auto functionality even extends to any additional JMaz pars or effect lights attached to the Versa Flex Bar.
The colors on the Versa Flex Bar are also worth mentioning. JMaz didn’t settle for the same color tones that every other manufacturer uses. Instead, they wanted to create unique, vibrant hues that stood out from other light fixtures. The warm and cool white LEDs can be useful for DJ applications but also are handy in many other situations. We often find ourselves doing lighting for other groups and events where having warm and cool white lights are much more important than colors.
In the end, what’s most refreshing about the Versa Flex Bar, however, is that it’s what DJs want right now. Instead of including effects and lights that DJs don’t need, the Versa Flex Bar has the types of high-impact, modern lighting styles that DJs of all styles and skill levels will find useful. It’s versatile, well-built, and easy to use. The remote offers an insane amount of control and the case is tailor-made for protecting the light. All-in-all, we think JMaz has knocked this one out of the park.