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New wirless system - missing anything?

Discussion in 'Sound, Music, and Intercom' started by krhodus, Nov 18, 2006.

  1. krhodus

    krhodus Member

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    Location:
    Dublin, OH
    We just ordered on Thursday a completely new wireless system. We got:
    3- Shure ULXS Receiver / Basepack Transmitter Kits
    3- Shure ULXS Receiver / Basepack Transmitter / Wireless SM58 Kits
    2- Antenna Distributors (UA844)
    6- Countryman B6 Lavs
    1- 10' XLR Snake
    1- 6U Gator case

    This system is replacing our old VHF Shure SC setup (6 receivers, 6 basepacks, 1 wireless 58)

    Is there anything you guys recommend we also need to get in addition to this? I know we are going to most likely replace the antennas with 1/2 wave. Is it possible to use the 1/2 wave antennas that are on our Shure UC antenna dist on this rig just until we get new antennas?

    Thanks!
    Kevin
     
  2. CHScrew

    CHScrew Active Member

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    Location:
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    Thats cool. I wish we got new stuff.
     
  3. mbenonis

    mbenonis Wireless Guy Administrator

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    Occupation:
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    It isn't possible to use the half-wave antennas from the Shure SC series because they're the wrong size - I doubt it would help your reception, and it might even make it worse. I would just use the quarter wave whips until you order half-wave whips for your antenna distro. Be sure the antennas are mounted on the antenna distro's front, and position them such that they have 90 degrees between them (i.e., they create a 'V'). Also make sure the rack is placed in the line of sight to the microphones. This will help to minimize dropouts.

    I'm not sure if you've done this yet, but you'll need to pick six frequencies for these units to operate on. Don't just use the ones that pop up when you turn it on for the first time! Shure's Wireless Frequency Finder offers a great starting point, but if you still receive interference you'll need to manually coordinate your frequencies with any other radio equipment in the area (this includes walkie-talkies, other wireless microphone systems, TV stations, and the like).

    http://www.shure.com/ProAudio/TechLibrary/WirelessFrequencyFinder/index.htm

    Let us know if you have any question!

    Mike
     
  4. krhodus

    krhodus Member

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    Location:
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    The antennas I have are on a Shure UC antenna dist (and therefor UHF). Would those work?
     
  5. mbenonis

    mbenonis Wireless Guy Administrator

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    If the SC's are a UHF system, it may be possible to use your existing antennas, if the SC frequencies are in the same frequency band as the ULX frequencies. If they are in the same frequency band, go ahead and use them; you should have no problems. If not, you can try using them and see if they work - however, there's a good chance that reception will only be as good as the quarter-wave whips that your ULX systems will come with. I'm going to assume that if you have UHF SC units that the antennas have BNC connectors, but it's possible that they have PL-259 connectors (the bigger ones). In that case, you'll need a BNC to PL-259 connector to connect them up.
     
  6. SHARYNF

    SHARYNF Well-Known Member

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    Something to consider, IF you have a snake or series of xlr cables from stage to FOH, you can reduce a lot of problems by placing the wireless just off stage. For some reason people think that the need to place the receivers at the foh position, but many people place them much closer to stage

    Sharyn
     
  7. Chris15

    Chris15 CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    Now I am nothing like an expert, but I thought that the Shure UC series had little to do with the SC series... UC was one down from the top of the line in Shure range prior to them introducing the UHF-R series I thought. Now I have no idea whether that influences the suitability of antennas, but it is a UHF system so that does improve its chances of compatability...
     
  8. krhodus

    krhodus Member

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    Location:
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    Correct. We currently have (not counting the new setup) 2 independent setups. One is an older (we have no idea how old but are guessing around 10-14 years old) VHF SC series rig. The othere is a newer (about 4-6 years old) UHF UC series rig. Each rig has its own antenna distributor. The VHF SC uses the larger connection, and the antennas are fed up to our catwalk. The UHF UC has 2x 1/2 wavelenght antennas on the front of the antenna distributor.
    Here is a picture if it helps:
    [​IMG]
    The UC is on the top. The SC's antennas feed thru the white panel on the wall.
     
  9. JSFox

    JSFox Active Member

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    You can place your ant's on or near the stage, but unless you have a man'd monitor world to put them in, keep the receivers where you can see them. You need to be able to adj gain on the mics, monitor xmission and batt levels, and troubleshoot problems. Keep the receivers where you can see them.
     
  10. mbenonis

    mbenonis Wireless Guy Administrator

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    That makes a lot more sense. Someone please remind me not to post late at night. :)

    Like I said above, using the UC's antennas on the new systems all hinges on what frequency band your UC's use. We also need to know whether you ordered your ULX systems in the M1 or J1 bands. Can you post this information please?

    By the way, you will need to coordinate your frequencies if you plan to use the UC's and ULX's at the same time. I can give you more details on how to do this if you plan on using both.
     
  11. SHARYNF

    SHARYNF Well-Known Member

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    Certainly a valid view point, I would offer the alternative

    Levels should be controlled via the trim/levels on the mixer, not on the wireless, so this function should be coming from the foh position, and you should not be adjusting levels on the wireless receiver.
    In most cases you have no way to monitor the levels of the battery from the receive, but if you do have a person on the stage that person can when and if belt packs are switched can check and make sure battery levels are correct.

    Most of the time if you have a problem you need to be by the transmitter and the receiver to correct the problem, say for instance someone switched the frequency on one end of the chain. Attempting to do this from FOH is extremely difficult unless you have someone on stage, in which case having it all there makes it easier, and if you don't have someone in stage attempting to fix it via a talk back mic or a headset, split over the distance from the stage is diffucult.

    Different approaches, but for some the experience would tend to put receiver and transmitter close at hand



    Sharyn
     
  12. mbenonis

    mbenonis Wireless Guy Administrator

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    Personally, I tend to prefer having the receivers next to me at FOH because I can quickly glance at them and diagnose problems that might occur. However, I've also never had an A2 who could diagnose the problems by him/herself. If I had such a person, I would most likely have placed the receivers on stage, closer to the transmitters and the A2.

    As far as levels go, IMO the levels on the mics get set once to accommodate the dynamic range of the person using the mic, and then all further gain adjustments get made at the preamp.

    FWIW, the Shure ULX offer a three bar battery meter on the receiver.
     
  13. SHARYNF

    SHARYNF Well-Known Member

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    Again, like I said there are different methods. My experience has been more distance related and I have found that having the trans and reciev close on stage has dramatically reduced the problems. I agree having the A2 on stage is a big help, but again, in my experience, getting that person there can be a lifesaver, it is great to diagnose the problem from foh but racing back to stage etc to fix the problem can be difficult or you are trying to train someone on the fly on stage to fix the problem you have diagnosed.

    I'm used to new batteries each performance so that is rarely the issue, Mic problems, cable problems, frequency problems turning off the pack problem etc is typically what I run into and so we typically need to have someone on stage that can under direction fix the problem.

    Anyway, two approaches, personal preference and what sort of failures each has experienced.
    Part of it also comes down to staff available. Here with the focus on a school environment, it tend to look at more labor intensive solutions to get as many people involved and so that they learn. In a pro setup, it depends on budget and staffing.

    I do think that again in a school environment getting an a2 and having them be the on stage person, have them responsible for those functions makes for a rewarding very educational experience for them. It is easy to default to , I am the only one who can diagnose these problems, and if the setup constantly reinforces that it becomes self fulfilling. I think even at the high school level having a person on stage, on an intercom, who the experienced person at foh can communicate with, and step them thru the problem diag solution, can work pretty well.

    Personally I find a program where you start the person out observing, then operating, then diagnosing and finally designing can work really well, so often what I find is that there is a tendancy to have too much of a experience level between the top person and the next in line.

    Sharyn
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2006

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