A new phased array inspection scheme, called Technique to Image using Virtual Array Sources (TIVAS), is proposed to image defects at deeper locations with good lateral resolution. An array of virtual focal spots using electronic beam forming and the expanded aperture through electronic linear scanning was employed to achieve significant increase in the focal depths, with improved SNR, when compared to single element array imaging or the conventional phased array focusing technique. The image reconstruction was performed using the well known synthetic focusing approach. In this paper, the role of the depth of focus and the focal spot size on the performance of TIVAS were studied semi-analytically and through FDTD simulations. It was observed smaller virtual focal spot size provides improved lateral resolution and there is an optimum depth of focus for the smallest focal spot size achievable for a array transducer. Experiments were carried out to validate these findings. © 2011 American Institute of Physics.