Electro-Voice BPU2 RE Problems

Robert F Jarvis

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 8, 2017
Location
Sebring, FL, USA
We bought 16 EV BPU2's plus headsets about a year ago. I only joined the theatre about 7 months ago but since then have seen some really odd things with these. 1st off when being told how to use them was told to put a rubber band around the battery and then shut the lid! They did this because mics were showing intermittent drop outs during shows and they thought the battery was not making good contact. I pointed out the fallacy of binding a battery down when the contacts were on top. This plus several packs falling apart stopped that practice only to come back from vacation tp find every unit now had a folded up masking tape 'pad' in the bottom to force the batteries onto the contacts! Before a show we now have to exert considerable pressure to mount the battery and of course - you've guessed it the packs are showing more and more bending where the front and back clip together.
I can't believe that units like this, at their expense and said to be used by so many TV Stations and Theaters could possibly require such padding.

I believed the dropouts were caused by the UHF antennas being mounted 100' from the stage and BOTH Antennae's were vertically polarized. I rotated by 90' (For a horizontal component) and before I left did not hear any drops outs. But! As said came back this extra padding. We have a very strong person in control here and I am anxious to see if/what experiences others have had with the units.

While I am at it does every one who uses EV RE97-2Tx headsets (two ear hooks and neck cradle) have to plaster actors with tape to keep them on? Again it seems a lot of trouble to go to but otherwise the darn things just fall off.
 

FMEng

Well-Known Member
Fight Leukemia
Joined
Mar 31, 2008
Location
Tacoma, WA
Maybe EV is harkening back to their Telex heritage with the same designer or jigs. Our church has some Telex packs that lose contact with certain brands of 9V battery. Consumer Duracells, Energizers, and Panasonics make reliable contact. Duracell Procells don't because the dimensions are slightly off.

You'd think that standards and testing would prevent this, but it isn't unheard of. Marantz Professional made the PMD660 field recorder in which Duracell AA batteries did not fit because the tip of the positive terminal was too fat. Energizers worked fine in them.

We've also got a Telex handheld that is seldom used. It always needs a spritz of DeoxIT on the contacts before it'll work reliably. Limited use means the plating on the contacts don't get burnished, and forms some invisible oxidation on the surface. They look perfectly shiny but its as though they have insulation on them.
 
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Aaron Becker

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2016
Location
US - East Coast
How do they know the dropouts are a result of power loss? Does it take 2-3 seconds to come back, has anyone observed a pack losing power or is this all based on assumptions? 100' shouldn't cause issues with antennas, but I've seen it before. Are the antennas paddles or omni 1/2 (or worse, 1/4) waves? I would resolve one problem (symptom) at a time. Can you try putting two packs on an actor during a show and have one with a backup/extra receiver located at stage location with dedicated antennas, to isolate the issue?

Many years ago I dealt with some lovely Audio Technica systems that were installed with some poor practices, combined with their age and poor engineering to begin with, that required relocating the antennas and changing antenna types. I never considered it was a power/battery issue - so I'm curious why the venue has chosen this as their culprit.
 

Robert F Jarvis

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 8, 2017
Location
Sebring, FL, USA
How do they know the dropouts are a result of power loss? Does it take 2-3 seconds to come back, has anyone observed a pack losing power or is this all based on assumptions? 100' shouldn't cause issues with antennas, but I've seen it before. Are the antennas paddles or omni 1/2 (or worse, 1/4) waves? I would resolve one problem (symptom) at a time. Can you try putting two packs on an actor during a show and have one with a backup/extra receiver located at stage location with dedicated antennas, to isolate the issue?

Many years ago I dealt with some lovely Audio Technica systems that were installed with some poor practices, combined with their age and poor engineering to begin with, that required relocating the antennas and changing antenna types. I never considered it was a power/battery issue - so I'm curious why the venue has chosen this as their culprit.

The antennas are paddles and the installation instructions specifically note they should be at 90deg (For horizontal and vertical polarization - important at in UHF). The x2 packs sounds like a good idea but in the last two shows I haven't observed any drop outs - is it because of the new antenna orientation or that wretched padding against the batteries, I don't know! Suppose I could re-orientate one antenna and run around the stage looking for drop outs - but chances of finding them are slim as these were low incident events. Be interesting when we move to 700MH (still on 600).
What I am really after here is anyone with specific EV transmitter pack experience.
Oh, I forgot to add "Do other techs tape headsets to performers" or maybe I should create a separate thread.
 

Aaron Becker

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 27, 2016
Location
US - East Coast
Be interesting when we move to 700MH (still on 600).
Errrmmm.... 700 Mhz became off limits for wireless mics several years ago (for USA users, which your profile indicates you're in FL)... Much of the 600 Mhz actual range is still available for use to end users currently... depending on which range of the 600 your equipment is actually in.

I've never used EV wireless, so I'll have to drop out of the conversation since you are really after EV-specific problems only. Best of luck.
 

Silicon_Knight

Active Member
Joined
Jul 20, 2015
Location
TX
At the risk of making overly basic troubleshooting suggestions, has anyone observed the receiver during a dropout? This should help identify whether the transmitter is losing power, the receiver is losing connectivity, or the audio signal is dropping while the RF is good. Additionally, has any frequency coordination been accomplished? This could be interference with other equipment, or with 16 channels, it could be Imod?

(BTW, I tried desigining 16x RE-2s in WWB in Sebring, FL and couldn't get more than 12-13 to be completely green in the tool).
 

Silicon_Knight

Active Member
Joined
Jul 20, 2015
Location
TX
The antennas are paddles and the installation instructions specifically note they should be at 90deg (For horizontal and vertical polarization - important at in UHF).
Oh, I forgot to add "Do other techs tape headsets to performers" or maybe I should create a separate thread.
It depends on the actor and the mic. I've run some shows with 20 mics and no tape (headsets), and I've run shows where every mic is taped (mixture of halo and headsets).
 

Silicon_Knight

Active Member
Joined
Jul 20, 2015
Location
TX
We bought 16 EV BPU2's plus headsets about a year ago.
I just looked up the RE-2 receiver, and it looks like (although the receiver is tunable in 25kHz steps) the recommended channel spacing is ~650kHz, which greatly limits the number of simultaneous mics that can be operated in the same venue. When this is combined with potential Intermod issues, you may be beyond the capacity of a single band.

Edit: fixing spelling
 
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