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Author Topic: Wireless XLR Transmitters  (Read 2084 times)

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Offline JD

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Wireless XLR Transmitters
« on: June 10, 2013, 09:52:21 AM »
Over the weekend I had a guy from a local TV station plug a wireless transmitter into my patchbox to send a board feed to his video camera that was placed about 30' away. It was a small aluminium box about 4" long and about 1 1/2" square with a short cable with an XLR plug on it. It was powered by a standard 9v battery. I forget the manufacturer's name, but do recall it was made in the USA.

I got to thinking about them and it seems they would be great for doing a soundboard matrix enabling you to keep you mics in the sweet spot of the room/venue and not having to run cabling for your board feed. Or even for just taking a board feed and being able to keep you and your gear out of the way of the FOH.

Anyone ever look into or use these? Curious on the sound quality? Battery life? Workable distance?
The box he used was only one channel (which was ok being it was a mono board feed), so I'm guessing you would need two, operating on different frequencies, to get a stereo signal?

If the quality is there, it seems there might be some potential for using these for what we do.

Mics: DPA 4022, 4060; Nevaton MC51, MCE400; Gefell sms2000, m20, m21, m27
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Offline RichT

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Re: Wireless XLR Transmitters
« Reply #1 on: June 10, 2013, 10:38:32 AM »
For this kind of stuff it's way more effort than it's worth, they can be good quality, but you *really* have to pay for them if they are and you'll still have some quality loss (except on the super expensive sennheiser 9000 system).  I'd expect it was probably a Lectrosonics transmitter (or maybe zaxcom)- Sennheiser, Sony and some specialist companies like Audio Developments and Micron make them too.  You'll also need to check on which frequencies FOH are using and co-ordinate so that you're not causing them any problems.

Something which might work for you though are these little E-MU pipeline boxes (http://www.creative.com/emu/products/product.aspx?pid=18609), they're stereo line level and will transmit up to 48kHz lossless over 2.4GHz, so it's out of the way of the FOH radios- they also may be discontinued now (they're also really cheap, I picked up a set of 2 for £75), but I think another company was looking at releasing something similar last year. On the other hand the range isn't great and they can be prone to breakup, especially if they're moving.  The internal li-ion batteries are a bit of a pain as you have to plug the units in to recharge, but they last about 4 hours.  They don't have any locking connectors either

Offline JD

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Re: Wireless XLR Transmitters
« Reply #2 on: June 10, 2013, 11:04:56 AM »
I'm thinking it may have been a Letrosonic transmitter he was using. I have been looking at their product line and WOW!!! you are not kidding about the cost of these things. Too bad, if they were cheaper they might have proven to be quite handy to have in the gear bag. Oh well.  :-\
Mics: DPA 4022, 4060; Nevaton MC51, MCE400; Gefell sms2000, m20, m21, m27
Pres: DPA MMA6000; Grace V2; Portico 5012; Sonosax SX-M2
Recorders: Edirol R09hr, Sound Devices 722

Offline DigiGal

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Re: Wireless XLR Transmitters
« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2013, 01:53:27 PM »
Lectrosonics systems are nice and yes expensive.  However, for best sound quality and reliability it's generally better to use a cable whenever possible.
Mics: AKG CK91/CK94/CK98/SE300 | Shure VP88 | Senn ME66/K6/K6RD Cables: Gotham GAC-4/1 "StarQuad" w/Neutrik EMC | Gotham GAC-2pair w/AKG MK90/3 connectors | DigiGal AES>S/PDIF cable Preamp: SoundDevices MixPre-D Recorder: Marantz PMD 661 Edit: 27" 3.4GHz QuadCore i7 iMac | OS X High Sierra 10.13.6 | Wave Editor | xACT  | Transmission | Final Cut Pro X                                                            

Offline TSNéa

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Re: Wireless XLR Transmitters
« Reply #4 on: June 12, 2013, 03:42:08 AM »
It was a small aluminium box about 4" long and about 1 1/2" square with a short cable with an XLR plug on it. It was powered by a standard 9v battery. I forget the manufacturer's name, but do recall it was made in the USA.
You could see some at B&H: search for "wireless transmitter" then filter with "plug-in"; I think only Lectrosonics are made in USA. Very expensive... but very "pro".
A lot of useful information on this site run for sound professionals (movies and TV):
http://jwsoundgroup.net/
http://jwsoundgroup.net/index.php?/forum/16-equipment/

Anyone ever look into or use these? Curious on the sound quality? Battery life? Workable distance?
Years ago, I used a Sennheiser SK Series IIRC in a video documentary: we wanted to "follow" a man walking in a huge demonstration and we put a lav and a transmitter on him. Well, it was not a criticalmusic show but the sound was very nice in quality at 50 m, maybe more, without drop out. The two Senn boxes (transmitter and receiver) were more expensive than my car... I had a used but decent car!  ;)

kirk97132

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Re: Wireless XLR Transmitters
« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2013, 11:55:05 AM »
FWIW, I work in a performing Arts Center and we ran frequency scanners in order to set up our wireless microphones, wireless intercom headsets, wireless routers for soundboard and light board.  Even after doing this our wirless intercom headsets will have issues every so often.  And the distance does not matter, I have been within 10 feet of the headset transmitter and had it give me a lost signal msg.  For an indise venue, where a band could be running wireless, mics, DI's IEM's and the house could be running wifi, and wireless routers on digital sound and lightboards, you should be sure the frequency you plan on using does not have traffic on it already or run the risk of having dropouts, crosstalk or just plain not working.  the airwaves are more crowded that you think.  Outdoors can be better but there are other things to deal with.  Had a buddy doing a large outdoor festival in  a waterfront park.  Then as part of the event,the Coast Guard and Navy docked some ships.  All his wireless just went away, gone.  He had to go to wired on everything.  Microwave dishes for TV transmitting, Live TV crews, Cell phone towers....All the stuff we use has adjustable frequencies so we can move if we run into issues.  And of course, that adds to the cost.  I think Shure makes a transmitter receiver combo  that accepts line level signal. Plus the ones already mentioned.  If you want quality be ready to pay for it. 

 

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