Buying Guide for Wireless Microphones

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Buying Guide for Wireless Microphones

For performers and presenters who require freedom of movement onstage, a wireless microphone is an ideal solution. In addition to permitting a full range of movement, this type of microphone allows users to utilise a convenient hands and cable-free presentation in live sound applications. Many theatres, for example, give each individual performer his or her own microphone for the widest audio coverage. Wireless microphones enable the actors to perform without the concern of cables or power. There are a number of designs that suit many different applications. Along with varying features for each type, wireless microphones use different transmitters and receivers based on whether the device is analogue or digital. Set-up is also a consideration for potential buyers since one model may involve a more complex set-up than another.

Wireless microphones can be purchased from electronic stores, sound equipment vendors, individual sellers, and online retailers. A large number of microphones can also be found at a lower cost from private sellers on auction sites like eBay. Buyers should look for the wireless microphone that best matches their needs after considering the different types and designs available.

Defining Wireless Microphones

Wireless microphones allow speakers, performers, and other users to bring audio clarity to the stage or public platform without the need for cables. Two components in a wireless system make this possible: a transmitter and a receiver. The transmitter stays close to those onstage, generally within the microphone itself, and carries the audio. The receiver is close to the sound mixing position and picks up the audio broadcast from the transmitter. When properly designed with quality components, a wireless microphone system provides users with similar or even better audio quality as a traditional wired system, minus the inconvenience of the cables.

Wireless Microphone Designs

Just as with traditional microphones, there are different types of wireless microphones each designed for specific applications. This is why it is important for shoppers to consider what the microphone is intended for in order to obtain the correct type for the application. Wireless microphones are made for specialised tasks, such as speech, vocals, or instruments. No matter what the performance, there is a wireless microphone that can accompany it. Here are just a few of the wireless microphone designs available:

Design

Features

Clip-on

Optimised for instruments

Microphone clips directly to instrument

Musician wears body pack transmitter

Handheld

Ideal for vocalists and speakers

Transmitter built into microphone handle

Is the most widely available wireless microphone

Headworn

Completely hands-free

Transmitter worn via body pack

Good solution for active onstage performers (dancers, instructors, etc.)

Instrument

Optimised for instruments

Transmitter connects directly to instrument

Wireless receiver

Lavalier/ Lapel

Great for speakers and hands-free enthusiasts

Clips onto clothing

Body pack transmitter

Wireless receiver

Buyers may require one or all of these systems, depending on the application. The first step to determining which designs best serve the buyer's intentions is to decide on the onstage goals. Once this is accomplished, shoppers can match up the right microphone accordingly.

Clip-On

A clip-on wireless microphone is a popular solution for brass, woodwind, and percussionists. Unlike the lavalier microphone listed below, this design is optimised for instruments instead of vocals. The microphone in this system is clipped to the instrument. The instrument player wears the transmitter in one of several types of body packs that attach to their clothing or skin.

Handheld

Handheld wireless microphones are the most commonly seen wireless microphone. They are ideal for vocalists, speakers, and performers who prefer to hold the microphone but do not want to be hindered by cables. It is also incredibly useful for situations in which multiple speakers pass the microphone back and forth. Because there are no cables, this can be a clean look for small or crowded stages.

The transmitter is built into the handle of the microphone so the system only contains two elements: the microphone and the receiver. Handheld microphones are more widely available than other designs since they tend to be used in more applications. Many manufacturers produce both traditional and wireless versions of their most popular microphones.

Headworn

Utilising a body pack transmitter and a wireless receiver, the headworn wireless microphone is the ideal hands-free device. The biggest advantage to this design is that the quality of the audio remains the same no matter which way the wearer turns his or her head. Since the microphone is close to the speaker's mouth, feedback and gain levels are decreased. For these reasons, it is popular amongst singer-dancers, vocalist drummers, fitness instructors, dance leaders, and other active stage participants. Depending on personal preference and the action being performed onstage, there are several varieties available for buyers: one ear, two ear, visible, and invisible.

Instrument

Due to their active onstage performances, guitar and bass players were amongst the first musicians to take advantage of wireless microphones. Manufacturers quickly responded and developed the instrument wireless microphone, which is optimised for instrument audio. This wireless microphone has two elements for simplified use. These include a belt pack transmitter that is plugged directly into the instrument and a wireless receiver.

Lavalier/ Lapel

The lavalier wireless microphone is a commonly used device amongst public speakers, presenters, worship leaders, onstage actors, and performers who prefer hands-free microphones. This fashionable microphone design contains a clip that enables the wearer to hook it onto a piece of clothing. Men and business women often clip it to the lapels of their shirts, hence it is also known as a lapel microphone. Once the microphone is clipped to a piece of clothing, it is connected to a body pack transmitter, which then broadcasts to a wireless receiver. Some manufacturers produce completely wireless versions but the most common does have one wire that connects the transmitter to the microphone and is usually worn under the clothing. Lavalier microphones can be a cost-effective option. They do tend to change in volume if the wearer turns his or her head and are prone to feedback.

Wireless Microphone Frequencies

Wireless microphones operate on one of three frequency bands. These are UHF, VHF, and 2.4GHz. UHF is utilised by professional microphone systems and does not get much interference from other frequencies. It generally has selectable channels to reduce the amount of possible interference.

Out of all three options, the VHF band has the fewest available frequencies. It usually does not have selectable channels, so checking for possible interfering stations before a VHF microphone is purchased is important.

The 2.4GHz frequency is commonly integrated with mobile phones and other wireless devices. It has the lowest chance of interference since high power signals do not use it. There are many selectable frequencies available with the 2.4GHz option. This makes it ideal for multiple microphone applications.

How to Buy Wireless Microphones on eBay

Once you choose the best device to fulfil your goals, you can begin your search on an online marketplace like eBay. eBay has a wide variety of sellers and a high number of listings for wireless microphones. Shoppers can find items easily using the search box and category refinement options. Entering keywords into the search box is the fastest way to find what you are looking for. For example, to see listings for condenser microphones, enter "condenser wireless microphone" in the search field. You can enter any keywords you choose, even specific microphone brands or models. If the search results provide you with too many listings or not quite what you want, you can refine your search three different ways. Input additional keywords, click on specific category options, or choose one of the organisational options to sort results by price, condition, and more.

Once you find a product you like, read the item's description before you decide to purchase it. The description gives information about the microphone's condition, whether it is new or used, and what is included in the purchase. You may also find pictures from the seller and shipping information, including shipping costs. Note that sellers provide their accepted forms of payment in the item's listing so that you can be ready to pay for the item as soon as you commit to it. Contact the seller directly with questions or concerns about the microphone.

Conclusion

Wireless microphones are a convenient way to give musicians and speakers the convenience of no cables when in public arenas and for live sound applications. Some designs also enable hands-free usage, a benefit to dancers and other performers requiring freedom of movement onstage.

Prospective buyers should begin their search by deciding which wireless microphone design best suits their needs. This can be determined by considering what application is intended for the microphone. Once that is decided, the choice between a handheld, clip-on, headset, and other microphone designs can be determined. Even so, buyers should consider the advantages and disadvantages of specific transmitters and receivers.

Wireless microphones can be purchased from electronic stores, sound equipment vendors, individual sellers, and online retailers such as those on eBay. With eBay, buyers can shop from a wide variety of private and commercial sellers, compare prices, research the best microphones, and find the best deals. Whether buyers intend to buy used or new wireless microphones, both can be found in abundance from online and traditional marketplaces for almost any intended application.

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