Step 8: Wireless Microphone Brands

One of the most effective ways to get good wireless quality is to get the proper wireless system for your needs.  If you are going to install your system permanently, hire an AV consulting company to come in and do a wireless analysis.  This is the best way to determine what microphones will meet your needs, and in the long run it will save you money.  If you are using a portable setup, make sure to over-compensate for problems you may run into.

I have listed my opinion of various wireless companies below.

Name brand company, almost everyone has heard of Shure.  Their cheaper products are good for some applications.  They have somewhat decent sound quality.  Easy to use interface.  Very good digital products.
Products made very cheaply, do not hold up well to professional use.  Their analog systems are prone to wireless interference more so than some other brands.  Will not hold up for a portable system.
Bottom line:
If you are on a budget and don't need a lot of mics, get one of their cheaper products.  Also, their digital products are very good, so if you are going digital, Shure mics might be a good way to go.  Don't buy for portable systems.

Good sound quality.  Name brand.  Reasonable price.  Very powerful.  Easy to use.  Holds up to wear and tear.  Good for portable systems.  Not bad for installed systems.
Most of their products will overpower other brands.  Don't buy if you are mixing cheaper brands.
Bottom line:
The best option in my mind.  Just don't use if you are using a Shure or cheaper mic at the same time.

Fantastic sound quality.  Name Brand.  Best wireless quality between AKG and Shure.  Easy to use.  Holds up to wear and tear.  Great for all systems.
Bottom line:
If you have the money get Sennheisers.

Lectrosonic (thanks to jakdedert for reminding me about this one):
Fantastic sound quality.  Name Brand.  Considered to have the best quality of any company.  Easy to use.  Holds up to wear and tear.  Great for any system.
Pricey.  Probably the most expensive mic out there.
Bottom line:
These mics are mostly used in video production and for productions with an unlimited budget.  If you can afford a Lectrosonic, then there is no doubt that it is the right mic for you.

Audio Technica:
Good mic.  Nice user interface.  Better wireless quality than Shure.  Holds up to professional use.  Decent price.
Not as good sound quality as Shure.
Bottom line:
Not a bad mic for those who are on a budget.

Line 6:
Decent digital systems for the money.
Not as good as Shure for the digital.
Bottom line:
Good entry level digital system.

Terrible wireless mics.
Bottom line:
Don't buy nadys wireless products.

You get lots of mics
Very prone to frequency crowding, and there's nothing you can do about it since they are fixed frequency.  Terrible sound quality.
Bottom line:
OK if you don't expect to use all the mics at once and are on an extreme budget.

There are other brands out there, but these are the ones you will see most often.  If you have a question about a specific brand, please feel free to ask me.
<p>Hi, I work for a low budget church and suddenly find myself responsible for a sound system I do not completely understand yet. One of our handheld wireless mics suddenly sounds &quot;tinny&quot;, like there is no bass in people's voices. I don't know if this is a setting on the transmitter (nobody has touched it or changed it) Or if something has &quot;blown out&quot; in the mic and we just need to replace it. Looking it up I see that will cost us $250 to replace it and we have to be careful with money but I would also like to figure it out myself, because if we call in the sound technicians it will cost us more.</p>
<p>Hi there, i've been given a field recording which seem to have audio glitches on it. the glitches are not a click but a short burst of noise, like someone rub or brushes against the mic. According to the recordist, nothing of that sort happen. Do you have an idea where it comes from? Could it be that the frequencies on the wireless system are relatively close to another?</p>
Hi <br>I have an issue with the microphone set that is pictured above. The other day I was running the sound board for church. While I was running this only the clip on mics were being used. I look down to see if the next speaker has a turned their mic on for the next part. I then realize that the hand-held mic has a one dot on the signal bar. I thought &quot;Strange what is causing this&quot; because normally it would show all dots for the best strength. I go get the hand-held mic which was put away and I notice that it was off. This was really weird. We turned the receiver for that mic off and then back on and it seems to be fine. You seem to be the only person who would know this so far in all my searching for the issue. Do you think this might be interference with the other mics or is it showing its weaknesses since we have had it for ten years? <br>
Good information. <br>We have the same AKG handheld as pictured above and the battery won't stay in place. Even with the battery cover on, the battery keeps popping out, which turns the mic off. Any suggestions? <br>Thanks!
have you worked with capture before? its giving me major difficulty
I have not worked with them before; but what are they doing?
i am using Shure wireless microphones and 1/4 isnt even getting any signal. do you have any possible ideas for me to try and get it to work?
Does the XLR connection work? Sometimes there is a switch on the back to switch between the XLR output and the 1/4in connection (this helps reduce noise on parallel outputs). What model Shure is it? If I know the model I can probably figure it out easier. It is possible that the wiring inside the receiver is damaged or loose. Shure is decent about covering their products... if it isn't a simple matter of a switch, you might want to give them a call to see if they will cover the repair. If the XLR connection works, they will not repair it for free, and you need a 1/4 in connection; then you could get an XLR to 1/4 in adapter. Unfortunately just from what you are telling me, I'm guessing that it is a wiring issue inside of the receiver. If you are comfortable with soldering, you could open the receiver up (careful... this will void your warranty!), and re-solder the connection on the 1/4 in plug, but other than that (or sending it to Shure or an authorized repair center), I don't know of a fix other than checking for a switch on the back, and possibly checking in the menus incase there is an option to switch between XLR and 1/4 in... but I've only seen it in the menus a few times. <br> <br>Good luck! :)
Hey -you've ripped off other peoples images and expect other people to respect you copyright??<br> <a href="http://www.batronix.com/versand/spektrumanalysator/Rigol-DSA1030.html" rel="nofollow">http://www.batronix.com/versand/spektrumanalysator/Rigol-DSA1030.html</a><br> <a href="http://www.technopraxis.org/2010/02/will-churches-be-excluded-from-wireless.html" rel="nofollow">http://www.technopraxis.org/2010/02/will-churches-be-excluded-from-wireless.html</a><br> <a href="http://playthisthing.com/game-taxonomy/static" rel="nofollow">http://playthisthing.com/game-taxonomy/static</a><br> <a href="http://dallaspenn.com/weblog/?p=4633" rel="nofollow">http://dallaspenn.com/weblog/?p=4633</a>
In response to your links:<br>First link: Got the picture somewhere else, since I can't read the language this is written in, I removed the picture just to be safe and will put another one in it's place shortly. Thank you for bringing this to my attention.<br>Second link: Stock photo, that site probably got it from the same place I did.<br>Third link: Didn't get it from that site, again I got mine from a stock photo site, and it's a picture of static. You really can't pin it down to a specific site.<br>Fourth link: Again, a stock photo. They probably got it from the same place I did.<br><br>I saw copyrights on the websites you listed, but not on the pictures. More than likely, they get them from the same stock photo sites that I use.<br><br>I specifically state that I do not claim copyright to the images, however, as far as I know I have the right to use them. If there is any question about that right, I remove the images right away.<br><br>Also, for some reason your comment did not show up in my comments section... I seem to remember that happening before on one of my ibles as well. Do you have any idea why that is, or should I report that as a bug?<br><br>Thanks again for bringing these to my attention... I do take copyright very seriously. Unless I believe I have the right to use an image or anything, I will not use it.<br><br>-thegeeke
This guy did this to me too, there was no copyright on the website ....and no comment appeared on my profile.
Ya... and it's weird... your comment just showed up on my profile, along with his. Just today! I wonder if there is something going on with the instructables website, or if there is some way he is hiding the comments. Also, he never responds to your reply! (At least he never has with this instructable, or my other instructable he posted something similar about!)<br><br>Now I will give him this:<br>I can't say one way or another if the first link he put on there has copyright on it, so I'm glad he let me know about that, but other than that he seems to be WAY too obsessed with the pictures. If you look at his profile, all his comments are about pictures!<br><br>Thanks for telling me, I was wondering if it was just me. :)
I'm afraid that that people like this will just get worse now that Google lets you drag images into its search bar.
Probably. The problem is that many sites will use stock photos, (and probably get them from the same place that I do), and put copyright on the page. They're not copyrighting the photos, but rather the page itself.
Most of the information is good, but you shortchange Shure pretty badly, and don't even mention the # 1 brand of RF mics used in most motion picture and video productions; Lectrosonics. The more expensive (and I do mean expensive...a couple of thousand bucks for a complete setup with one lavaliere transmitter/mic and one handheld unit), Shure systems equal any Sennheiser system. They are mainstays of the wireless world for presentations and other live productions. The Lectrosonic units are even pricier, but are nearly bulletproof.
You are correct, I did forget to include Lectrosonic. I don't use their products that much because they are so expensive (of course, that shouldn't be be an excuse... Some of those cheaper brands I've only used once...) I will be adding it in the next time I'm on a real computer.<br><br>I have to disagree with you about Shure. I've used most of their products, but I use the ULX series quite a bit. I've had nothing but problems with all of their analog products, especially with the ULX. I've spent hours on the phone with Shure to be sure it wasn't anything was doing wrong, of course none of their reps know anything, so they never resolved anything. Now I will admit that their digital products are good (I did mention that), but the reason Shure became popular is that at one time they were cheaper specs to specs than Sennheiser and AKG. I personally own the AKG WMS450 systems, and when I use it in conjunction with the newest ULX systems, it always performs better, and sometimes overpowers the Shures even though I've run intermodulation calculations. (And the WMS450 is significantly cheaper than the Shures!<br><br>I realize there are people who will stand by their Shure mics until the end, but I'm sorry. My personal experience with them has shown them to be unreliable.<br><br>Thank you for your input, and reminding me about Lectrosonic. I am currently working on another instructable about purchasing audio equipment. I plan to publish it in a week to a month. I am reviewing as many companies as I can remember at the end, but I'm not limiting myself to just mics... Would you mind if I sent you a link once I have it published so you can look it over and tell me if I forgot any companies? Thanks again! :)

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Bio: I am an AV and IT guy... I have been involved with sound and lighting since I was 7 yrs old. I currently do Information ... More »
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