Next week in Las Vegas, thousands of systems integrators and audiovisual consultants will converge upon the Las Vegas Convention Center for Infocomm 2014. We at Revolabs are proud to have a booth at Infocomm once again, but this year, we are even more excited because our Senior Project Manager, Holger Stoltze, will be presenting a special session called “Wireless Versus Wired Microphones — Successful Conferencing for Every Setting” on June 19 from 2:30-4:30. (Session ID IS056)
In the old days, the choice of wireless versus wired microphone was a fairly simple one because the wireless technologies of yester-year were simply not as reliable or as intelligible as wired microphones. Early wireless microphones cost a lot more per channel, and the compression needed to overcome the interference would often color the sound in a negative way. Therefore systems integrators would usually start their designs with wired microphones, and they would only swap those wired microphones for wireless when they were forced to (say, by a missing floorbox under a conference table, or multi-purpose rooms with so called “flexible furniture”). Each of the old VHF and UHF wireless microphones that were added to a system also created a risk point, a point of possible failure, because those wireless microphones were utilizing the same broadcast frequencies as television and radio stations. Endless AA and 9Volt batteries were kept on hand, and good technicians knew to change those batteries every two hours of use, or else…
Nowadays, the batteries in wireless microphones tend to be rechargeable, and they last a lot longer than they used to (much like mobile phone batteries). A typical wireless microphone can run at least 8 hours on one charge. The frequency spectrums are also much more regulated these days. Some manufacturers including Revolabs have developed microphones that use the unlicensed DECT band. Some wireless microphones will automatically hop to an open channel when they detect interference. By using new spectrums, channel hopping, and digital signal processing, the wireless microphones of today require a lot less compression, so the sound quality has improved dramatically; and almost all wireless microphones come with a “low battery” warning light!
Still, the typical AV consultant or system integrator has to help the client choose between wireless and wired microphones, as each still has its own pros and cons. The biggest difference is that wireless microphones will always require some kind of battery, which will need to be charged, and/or changed periodically. Wireless microphones will always be correctly “in phase”, whereas wired microphones could be accidentally wired “out of phase”. If the microphones are wired, and the microphone wires are not in a metal conduit, they may be prone to noise from lights or power wires. Wired microphones are more secure and less prone to theft, or accidental loss, yet more prone to damage by students.
In his presentation at Infocomm, Revolabs’ Holger Stoltze will delve deeper into this discussion, identifying all the pros and cons, the benefits and challenges of using wired microphones versus wireless. And don’t assume that his presentation will be one-sided just because Revolabs has been known for wireless microphones. We promise you that the presentation will be balanced and informative.
Seats are limited, so please sign up by following these steps:
Open a web browser like Chrome or Firefox and go to http://www.infocommshow.org/
Click the navigation button named "Conferences And Education" then "Session Search"
Search for Holger's session using "Holger" or "Wireless"
Locate session IS056 and click the name of the session: Wireless Versus Wired Microphones — Successful Conferencing for Every Setting
Add the session to your cart/schedule and checkout