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Old April 12th, 2008, 07:10 PM   #1
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Can you give an NAB report on new Samson Wireless

I was just told by a dealer that Samson is coming out with a new miniature wireless transmitter and receiver that is frequency agile, compatible with new standards and usable in both the U.S. and Europe legally.

Among other things, this system is supposed to replace the now (or soon to be) discontinued UM (such as the UM32) and AM such as the miniature AM1.
Here is a photo of the Airline Micro miniature receiver that now only is capable of a single frequency. The new system would replace this, with a matching transmitter, but it would have many frequencies available:
http://www.samsontech.com/products/p...=141&brandID=1

Here is a press release from Samson:
http://www.samsontech.com/main/misc....D=19&brandID=1

Here is a page that seems to show some of the components of the new Airline synth series:
http://www.sonicstate.com/news/shownews.cfm?newsid=6055

I am looking for transmitter similar in size to to the Lectro SM, but that would be legal in europe, and would be less expensive should it be taken by security or stolen.

A very small receiver that would work on the XH-A1 on a Merlin would also be great.

The new Samson seems to be perfect. If anyone gets info on it at NAB, please post about it.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Generally this is what I'm looking for:
1. Tiny transmitter that can go in a small cloth bag on the waist band of a dancer's rehearsal shorts.
2. Able to accept a tiny lavalier that would be taped to the inside of the dancer's t-shirt or similar top. Could also be used on a woman on a leotard, but this should not be a problem.
2. Quality good enough for random dialog between a dancer, a partner and a coach during rehearsal.
3. Range -- within a a rehearsal hall, or in a theater--no more than about 30 yards probably.
4. Perfect signal (as would be gotten from the Lectro) not necessary only pieces of recording used. Obviously, the unit has to be mostly reliable.
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Old April 12th, 2008, 07:51 PM   #2
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Two observatons.

First, The RADIO halls at NAB (where wireless mic companies used to be featured) have been relative ghost towns getting sparser and sparser year by year.

Second, you'll find that nearly everyone here with longtime experience has pretty strong reservations with any gear stamped Samson, (or for that matter, NADY)

It's not that they don't function properly, they do. It's more that both of these lines have historically been focused toward the beginner/hobyist. That doesn't make them bad. Beginners need gear too. And to the extent they proform their jobs adequately, it's good that people have a choice.

But hidden bills of substantially lower price are often paid in consistency and durability.

Again, I don't own or operate units from either brand - but the durability question would be a HUGE red flag for me in regards to your stated use.

Micing a dancer would put the unit in constant motion - sustaining shakes and bumps - as well as heat and perspiration. And any less than stellar build quality - from PCB connections, to wire terminations - would be under a LOT of potential strain in this use.

Perhaps these manufacturers have "grown up" and their build quality is now equal to other quality manufacturers - I don't know about that.

I just know that an inexpensive mic system is NO LONGER inexpensive if you have to repair it frequently or replace it before a reasonable working life.

So tread carefully.

Everyone knows the good/fast/cheap PICK TWO concept.

In wireless mics, it would probably be good/reliable/cheap.

YMMV.
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Old April 13th, 2008, 02:37 AM   #3
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Bill,
I appreciate your concerns and do realize the points you make.

The new Samson may or may not be what I need. However, the existing miniature Samson would be perfect if it wasn't only one frequency. So I have hopes for the new one.

I am not looking for long term durability, though I know people who have used the current Samson models on network TV shows in the U.S.

The only options I have seen for what I need are

1. the Lectrsonics SM or SMa (single battery model) and it is a bit heavier than I would like.

2. The Sennheiser model that is used a lot in New york, but it is way too heavy.

Both these systems are over $2000 used and over $3000 new. And I believe both are illegal in Europe (I'm not sure about the Sennheiser, but it is really too heavy.)

I know that people go on location in Europe and use Lectros, but there are two problems: a) the power is too high (max allowed is 50mw I believe and the Lectro is 100ms), and the Lectros are not made in frequency ranges legal for visitors in the countries I will be shooting in.

Another problem is that I've got enough trouble watching other equipment that I would prefer not to have to obsess over a $3000 mic system -- especially one that could be taken at the border.

To rent a Lectro or Sennheiser would cost much more than buying the Samson, using it two or three times, and throwing it in the trash. So, if it works at all, it could be what I'm looking for.

I am not aware of any other system in this size range. Also, Samson receivers, being plastic and all, have been much lighter in weight than others, and for this prarticular project, that would also be helpful.

I have two quality wireless systems already, but not right for what I need now. I'm hoping the new Samson might be right.

If all else fails, I will use a Lectro, but I would rather not.
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Old April 13th, 2008, 01:22 PM   #4
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[QUOTE=Jack Walker;859183]Bill,
I appreciate your concerns and do realize the points you make.



OK,

In your specific circumstances your plans make a lot of sense.

I can see it would be great to find a small, concealable, decent wireless rig for the kinds of uses you're considering.

I'll be at NAB tomorrow through Thursday - I'll try to add the Radio hall to my plans - where I'm sure the Samson people will be showing this.

If you purchase this system, please come back and let us all know how the units work.
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Old April 13th, 2008, 05:24 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Davis View Post
OK,

In your specific circumstances your plans make a lot of sense.

I can see it would be great to find a small, concealable, decent wireless rig for the kinds of uses you're considering.

I'll be at NAB tomorrow through Thursday - I'll try to add the Radio hall to my plans - where I'm sure the Samson people will be showing this.

If you purchase this system, please come back and let us all know how the units work.
Great! and absolutely I will report back if I do get the new Samson (if it is what I think it is).

I had been planning to go to NAB myself, but unfortunately, conflicts came up.
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Old April 15th, 2008, 01:04 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Jack Walker View Post
Great! and absolutely I will report back if I do get the new Samson (if it is what I think it is).

I had been planning to go to NAB myself, but unfortunately, conflicts came up.
Jack,

Sorry, but bad news from the show floor.

I stopped by the Samson booth yesterday and saw the wireless transmitter you mentioned. It actually looks pretty impressive. It's small, light and isn't going to be particularly expensive.

However, there's no matching RECEIVER at this time. They were showing the transmitter paired with a quarter-rack-space AC/wall wart receiver - but right now, Samson does NOT have a portable receiver option that matches the new transmitter.

So right now this system isn't designed for on the road field recording.

I did talk with their national sales VP and when told him about your desire for a "semi-disposable" rig, he noted that they do have a bunch of older stock in their "videographer-friendly" low cost transmitter/receiver stuff and he'd be happy to sell you sat a deep discount - but it's probably the "prosumer" stuff and I don't know if you're interested in that. If you are drop me a line and I'll give you his contact info.
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Old April 15th, 2008, 02:19 PM   #7
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Bill,
Thank you for the report. The transmitter looks encourging. Sorry there isn't a receiver at this point. I will send you an email as you suggest. Thank you!
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