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Old October 2nd, 2006, 08:00 PM   #1
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Wireless Lav advice...

Hey all...I'm thinking about buying a wireless mic system (mostly for weddings).

I'm wondering whether there is such a thing as a wireless system that has an XLR jack on the bodypack, so I can (for example) hook my spare shotgun up to the bodypack in certain situations instead of a clip-on lav. Also, is there such a thing as an omni-lav, that I could clip onto the pastor, for example, and still hear the bride/groom?

My price range is about $200-300 or so, which is too low for the Sennheiser kits. I've seen some kits by AKG that seem more geared towards music, but the reviews seem good.

Any advice would be appreciated. If it makes any difference, I'd be hooking the receiver into a mixing board (which has 1/4" as well as XLR inputs), along with my sennheiser shotgun.

Additionally, is there a model that would allow me to buy another bodypack at some point when I have more funds?

Thanks!!

Jeremiah
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Old October 3rd, 2006, 05:14 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeremiah Rickert
Hey all...I'm thinking about buying a wireless mic system (mostly for weddings).

I'm wondering whether there is such a thing as a wireless system that has an XLR jack on the bodypack, so I can (for example) hook my spare shotgun up to the bodypack in certain situations instead of a clip-on lav. Also, is there such a thing as an omni-lav, that I could clip onto the pastor, for example, and still hear the bride/groom?

My price range is about $200-300 or so, which is too low for the Sennheiser kits. I've seen some kits by AKG that seem more geared towards music, but the reviews seem good.

Any advice would be appreciated. If it makes any difference, I'd be hooking the receiver into a mixing board (which has 1/4" as well as XLR inputs), along with my sennheiser shotgun.

Additionally, is there a model that would allow me to buy another bodypack at some point when I have more funds?

Thanks!!

Jeremiah
You can get lavs made up with an XLR connector and a breakaway a little ways up the cable from it. To use it wired to the mixer or camera you leave the XLR on. To use it with a wireless transmitter, you separate the cable at the breakaway connector.

Lavs are come in two flavours - cardioid and omni. Different mixers have their favourites but generally speaking omnis are used for film and video while the cardioids are more used where you need to reduce the chance of feedback in live sound reinforcement situations. Using a cardioid requires the talent to have a certain discipline to avoid head movements that take them off-mic and can limit dramatic expression.

No need to worry about how to send the wireless to your mixing board. If need be any cable adapters are commonly available.

Future expansion to add additional tranmitters without also adding additional receivers isn't in the cards. While there are a couple of multichannel receivers on the market, they're way over your budget. Each transmitter you add will need to be paired with its own receiver.

Hope this helps
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Old October 4th, 2006, 05:37 AM   #3
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Do body packs have XLR jacks on them, or would I have to use a XLR to 1/8" mini plug adapter? That's more what I was wondering.

I've looked online for kits, and I've seen some from AKG that have 14 channel receivers, a single body pack, and an omni lav, for $169

There are several kits by Samson that are from below $100, to around $200 I don't know anything about the samson brand, though.

Nady's seem inexpensive, but looked kinda cheapo.

Azden's seemed overpriced, I've always thought of them as a cheaper brand, but their wireless mic kits are more than the sennheisers.

Any help narrowing down would be nice, if not, I'll just keep digging.

Thanks,
Jeremiah
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Old October 4th, 2006, 08:56 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeremiah Rickert
Do body packs have XLR jacks on them, or would I have to use a XLR to 1/8" mini plug adapter? That's more what I was wondering.

I've looked online for kits, and I've seen some from AKG that have 14 channel receivers, a single body pack, and an omni lav, for $169

There are several kits by Samson that are from below $100, to around $200 I don't know anything about the samson brand, though.

Nady's seem inexpensive, but looked kinda cheapo.

Azden's seemed overpriced, I've always thought of them as a cheaper brand, but their wireless mic kits are more than the sennheisers.

Any help narrowing down would be nice, if not, I'll just keep digging.

Thanks,
Jeremiah
They're not 14-channel receivers - they are single channel receivers that have 14 programmed operating channel selections to choose from. But they only operate on one channel at a time.

The mic connector depends on the manufacturer and model. Some use miniplugs, but there are other styles used as well. The mic power requirements are something else to consider when mating mic to bodypack.

You mentioned using a spare shotgun with the bodypack - the problem there will be if the shotgun requires phantom power or not. Most bodypacks can't supply full 48v phantom - if your mic requires it you're outa luck. But if your mic has an internal battery then an XLR to mini adapter cable will work.

Azden has a less than sterling reputation - Audio Technica, AKG, Sennheiser, Sony, Lectro are good brands to look for.
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Old October 4th, 2006, 11:13 PM   #5
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Yes...

Yes, I understood I could only use one at a time. I understand all the principals at work, I just need help narrowing down brand choices/models to fit my budget.

Thanks for the heads up on Azden. There are some AKG kits in my budget. The lower-end Sennheisers seem to start about $350 so they're a little high for me at this point. I have a sennheiser K6 shotgun (me67) which has its own power of course.

Thanks again for the reply.

Jeremiah
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Old October 5th, 2006, 05:52 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Jeremiah Rickert
Yes, I understood I could only use one at a time. I understand all the principals at work, I just need help narrowing down brand choices/models to fit my budget.

...
Just wanted to make sure you knew that having a receiver with 14 channels available did not mean you had a receiver that could simultanously tune in two different transmitters at once when you got that second bodypack.
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Old October 25th, 2006, 06:13 PM   #7
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Well...

I did lots of reading, and asked a friend who does live-theater sound...and eded up with Samson Micro 32 UHF system. After missing out on a couple Ebay auctions, I went ahead and just ate the extra money and bought a new one from B&H. At least you know you're getting brand new...and B&H backs up their products.

Thanks to those who replied.

Jeremiah
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Old October 28th, 2006, 05:14 PM   #8
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What is your experience with the wireless your bought. I have two Nady 351 sets I bought about a week ago that I am ready to toss in the trash. Anything more than about 3 feet away and the dropouts are unacceptable. I hate to spend any more money, but I also need to find a solution that will work.

For any that are considering the Nady VHF stuff my advice is to STAY away.
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Old October 28th, 2006, 05:23 PM   #9
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Samson...

The Samson set I bought is a UHF (not VHF like your Nady set). While I haven't used it in a shooting environment yet. In my house, I was able to get good sound from around corners and all across the house. But that's not a true practical test. I'm happy with it so far, though.

The book that came with the samson claims 100 meters line-of-sight for range.

Jeremiah
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Old October 30th, 2006, 05:56 PM   #10
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I just bought a Sennheiser UHF set today and it's awesome. Even with a non-diversity receiver it is excellent.
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Old October 30th, 2006, 06:05 PM   #11
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senn

Yeah, the sennheiser was out of my price range. Their stuff is top notch. I just bought one of their K6 shotguns (the me67) and was a little tapped out, hehe.

Jeremiah
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