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Old June 17th, 2004, 06:42 AM   #16
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I posted a link above to reference frequency "islands" in your city... while you're at the Lectrosonics site you should read up on wireless technology and what makes systems different from one another. If you want a free education on wireless... It'll take you less then an hour to read everything they have on their site... and within 10 minutes you'll know more about what makes a wireless system perform well or not so well.

Of course there's no beating your own real-world experience or the experience of professionals in your area... but people tend to claim that whatever system they're using is the best one for you. Myself included.

That's why I suggest you read the info on wireless on the Lectrosonics site. That will give you a handle on the truly meaningful specs of a wireless system and perhaps you can make a more educated decision.

If you peruse the archives you'll find that the Sennheiser systems have a lot of happy owners... I haven't read so much about the Sony... but that test link was interesting... although unscientific in that it didn't verify equal battery power and frequencies.

If you spend close to $500 on a wireless system you shouldn't have ANY dropouts or pops when you're within 40' of the receiver... unless you have a frequency conflict. (Which can come from a lot of sources.)
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Old June 17th, 2004, 08:12 AM   #17
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The AT-U100 is rated a 50mW max output power.

http://www.audiotechnica.com/guide/wireless/u100.html

A conservative 30 mW nominal output power is what they admit to.
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Old June 17th, 2004, 08:14 AM   #18
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Matt offers good advice. Educating yourself is always worth the investiment if you have the time.

I would add that reading only one manufacturer's information will lead you to beive (as Matt says) that their system is the best, so don't limit your reading to just Lectrosonsics. Other manufacturers sites have additional information that will either confirm, deny, or otherwise fill in missing information.

Shure, Audio Technica, Sennheiser, AKG, Zaxcom, etc. all have good wireless systems and information.

And a professional audio dealer will help you cut through the marketing hype and mis-information provide by some manufacturers.
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Old June 17th, 2004, 08:23 AM   #19
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Marty, 10 to 15 mW is what AT *admits* to, to my
understanding. Don't make me have to whip out
the PDF on you, now....: - )
(AT marketing department pushes it to the limit with
this system to try to get sales.)
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Old June 17th, 2004, 08:38 AM   #20
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Shoot, I was going to order anohter one today and it looks like the $100 gift certificate at B&H is now only $50!!

You snooze you lose I guess. Anyone know where I can get a great deal on another Sony UWP-C1?

Murph
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Old June 17th, 2004, 09:35 AM   #21
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Alright, you got me there. However, Ouput power is far from the most important spec of a wireless system.I have heard superior performace from a system with under 5mW.

I would still go with the AT or Senn over the Sony for the following specs (all in the pdf's):

S/N & Deviation
Sony - 60dB @+/-5kHz deviation
Senn 100-G2- 110dB @ +/-48kHz
AT - 107dB @ +/-30kHz deviation
(deviation is the rf bandwidth the audio uses. Wide bandwidth deviation has a lower noise factor)
(S/N caveat - The S/N figures quoted by all wireless maunfacturers except one use gated noise figures.)

Input level
Sony - mic input only
AT - mic or line level input
Senn - mic or line level

Distortion
Sony - Not even specified
AT - less than 1%
Senn - less than 0.9%

Marty
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Old June 21st, 2004, 10:00 PM   #22
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I picked up fresh batch of batteries from my local Home Depot the same day that I performed the test. However, I did change out the Sennheiser batteries in both the transmitter and the receiver after I noticed the drop outs in the first first test I ran. I also changed them out again when I ran the final test. Note also that the batteries I used at the wedding were but brand new too.

On the Frequencies issue:

I went through all of the channels and frequencies on the Sennheiser - trying to see if it was simply an interference issue. However, nothing I tried changed the results. As long as I was in straight line of site with the Sennheiser it was fine. It was when I started turning around in a circle and getting out of the line of site that it had problems.

Regards,
Kevin

<<<-- Originally posted by Matt Gettemeier : I think the Sony looks like an excellent choice, but just to keep it fair I listened to those tests and read the page they're listed on and the guy never mentions frequencies or batteries... I'm sure he used 100% fresh batteries for his tests, don't ya' think?

Just so you know when a 9v battery gets drained down to about 7.5v it begins to adversely affect your wireless system... I have a bin of 9v batteries that I give to my friends as "almost new" because I only run fresh batteries in the wireless. That couple bucks will save you a headache sooner or later. When I listened to the tests I thought the Sennheiser sounded like one of my sets when it needs fresher batteries...

Also the point about frequencies is crucial... there can be RFI that interferes with one wireless set and not another... depending on frequency.

You can check the frequency blocks in your area by going to the Lectosonics site:

CLICK HERE TO SEE IT! -->>>
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Old June 21st, 2004, 10:28 PM   #23
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Hi Kevin,

When you say you "went through all of the channels and frequencies on the Sennheiser", do you mean you tried each channel and they all gave the same result, or did you do something different?

Did you go through the channels on the receiver while looking at the RF indicator with the transmitters turned off? Did you see any indication of other traffic on those channels? And (I have to ask) do you know that the band this system is on has channels not used by local broadcasters?

Finally, when you compared the two systems, I'll assume that both transmitters were on. Were the frequencies selected so as not to interfere with each other by way of intermodulation?
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Old June 21st, 2004, 10:42 PM   #24
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Yes I went through all of the channels and frequencies. It obviously took some serious time.

Yes, I looked at the RF indicators - nothing indicated that I had any kind of interference on any combination I tried. Yet when I ran the test as soon as I went out of direct sight it would start dropping out.

Finally, when I tested only one system was on at a time. I didn't want to run the chance of them interfering with each other. And yes, I removed the batteries from the units that were not currently being tested.

I also tested other - a bit more professional - wireless systems that evening. The Sennheiser was the only one that I had a problem with. With the other professional units I was able to walk out the front door and up the street without a dropout. ;o)

Kevin

<<<-- Originally posted by Marty Atias : Hi Kevin,

When you say you "went through all of the channels and frequencies on the Sennheiser", do you mean you tried each channel and they all gave the same result, or did you do something different?

Did you go through the channels on the receiver while looking at the RF indicator with the transmitters turned off? Did you see any indication of other traffic on those channels? And (I have to ask) do you know that the band this system is on has channels not used by local broadcasters?

Finally, when you compared the two systems, I'll assume that both transmitters were on. Were the frequencies selected so as not to interfere with each other by way of intermodulation? -->>>
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Old June 21st, 2004, 10:47 PM   #25
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Welcome to the forum Kevin! I hope you didn't read my post in the wrong light... I was simply pointing out possibilities. Personally I always appreciate anyone who takes the time to put helpful stuff on the net.

A friend of mine recently began browsing these forums and he said he can't believe how little video there is to see from a video forum!

Over the past winter a lot of guys (including myself) went on a quest for better sound and we put a ton of it up for everyone to listen. You can hear a lot of those clips as they're hosted HERE!

Anyway, I've been tempted to post a little wireless test but so far I declined 'cause there are so many variables that can ruin your wireless feed on-set. If you guys want to see/hear what an old Lectro VHF set can do I'll be happy to post a clip. Just for sh*ts and grins I left my house and drove into the next cul-de-sac over and you can hear my truck radio and every whisper from me all the way until I'm about 200+ feet away... then when I get within 200' again (on the next street over) you can hear me clear as a bell from inside my truck...

I would expect ANY $500 or so wireless to be able to yield nearly perfect audio within your house... no matter where you go inside of it.

One time previously I read a post from a guy who said he gets some drop-outs with a Sennheiser 100 system beyond 40'... I hope that experience is rare. 150+ feet is nothing for me...

I bought both of my systems used for around $500 each.
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Old June 21st, 2004, 11:03 PM   #26
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Thanks Matt!

I agree that posting something like this has to be taken with a big grain of salt. However, I too have become frustrated with the lack of sound compressions out there on the Net. Sound is such a subjective thing. Plus, me being an old musician and everything, I've learned to take Mfgs specs with a big grain of salt. That is why I test equipment and let the results speak for themselves.

BTW, you can't imagine the kinds of emails I've received regarding that test. Some people get so defensive and have such a strong opinion about their equipment. However, when you ask them if they've compared it with any other Mfgs systems like I did then their response is always no. ;o)

I'll check out that link now.

Thaks again!
Kevin
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Old June 22nd, 2004, 12:03 AM   #27
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Kevin,

Thanks for filling in the information. It sounds like to covered all the bases and did a good test. Please don't get me wrong though, I'm not being defensive, I'm beign thorough. I am a professional audio engineer with 30 years xperience in broadcasting and recording. On these forums, I read so many highly opinionated posts from some very uninformed but well meaning folks that when I see something as involved as a wireless comparison test, I am naturally skeptical.

I have heard good and bad reports about all these systems. I have used the A-T U-100 and and been pleased, and I just sold 2 of them to a news production company in Wahsington D.C. I have used Sony's and been disappointed with their noise floor. I have not yet tried the G2's

Comparing wireless systems at this price range is like debating whether one frozen dinner is closer to real food than another. All have some resemblance, but the question is "which is the better imitation?" If you have reasonable expectations, and take care to select your frequencies, I think any of the models we have discussed should give reasonable results.

As for specs, they are only guidelines because they can be skewed to read better than they really are. In view of that, the poor specs posted on the Sony unit are pretty dismal, and I don't trust Sony to be any more "honest" with their specs than anyone else.

One question no one seems to be asking is about repairs. I know where to send a Sennheiser or an Audio Technica. I know I can call them and speak to the service manager. Not so with Sony.
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Old June 22nd, 2004, 12:09 AM   #28
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Marty,

No problem here. We are all just trying to find the best solution for an affordable price. Sound is such a subjective thing too, which makes it that much harder.

Kevin
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Old June 22nd, 2004, 06:59 AM   #29
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In the past I've been quick to blurt out an endorsement for Lectro and I realize I've been dropping not-so-subtle hints in this thread... but with the last couple posts Marty I've really had to hold back! Now with your last addition regarding repairs I have to add that Lectro is made right here in the USA and if you need a repair you'll get the industry's best service and FAST turn-around from the guys in New Mexico.

As far as the previously mentioned specs issue goes, Lectro's specs, performance, and construction are the reason that they're the most commonly used brand of wireless in the news and entertainment industry. Really you'd have to go to a digital Zaxcom for an upgrade.

All of the above is why I offer my humble opinion that some readers seeking wireless in the $500-$700 range consider a USED Lectro system.
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Old June 22nd, 2004, 08:40 AM   #30
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<<<BTW, you can't imagine the kinds of emails I've received regarding that test. Some people get so defensive and have such a strong opinion about their equipment. However, when you ask them if they've compared it with any other Mfgs systems like I did then their response is always no. ;o)>>>

You've touched on a very important thing in audio IMO and that is
it can be difficult to judge how good your audio is until listen to side by
side with another source.

When judging audio quality between two sources such as mic preamps,
(called A-B listening) most people will pick the louder audio as sounding best.

It can also very difficult to accurately judge a single source without anything to
compare it against. So your (for example only) Sennheiser ME66 may
sound great to you, until you check it against the 416. That sounds great
until you test it against the Schoeps MK41.

A six years ago one of the first music videos I shot took myself and
the musician around a historic theme park using things like the carousel
and riverboat as sets. They had an old steam power locomotive that we
did a couple of passes on. Later in post I got a hold of some sound track
CDs that had a bunch of train clips on them. I listened back and thought
they sounded ok . . . probably good enough to start using. That is until
I put the train audio recorded on my XL1 camera mic up in the speakers.
The XL1 mic (not known for stellar quality) made the
"pro sound track" CD sound like
CRAP!!! My jaw hit the floor at the difference in quality and how badly
I was fooled without anything to compare it against.
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