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The best wireless boom system today


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The Axient system is really good  ---  the serous drawback to the system for our use is power consumption and no small, bag friendly receivers.

Whenever Shure can get the power consumption down and come out with a viable non-rackmount receiver, I think they will really be a contender.

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Yeah, I am really impressed by some of their demos - unfortunately the rumours about that they wanted to enter film and tv market staled and was followed by rumours that they didn't want to focus on that.  So who knows when we will see bag friendly offerings from them. Maybe it will be a while till we see big live events again, so who knows how things will turn.

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When I work on or around big live shows, esp multiactor Broadway kinds of things (when we were doing those) often the choice of wireless was Sennheiser, mostly SK5000 series stuff.  I have no experience with that model for wireless boom, does anyone use them for that?  Sennheiser wireless seem to be common in our business but the ones I see are all the lower-end G3 type stuff.

 

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2 hours ago, Erob said:

For those of you running an MM1, what’s your preferred power solution? Do the AA battery’s normally last a good amount of time or do you rig some external source to it? 

When I ran that we used eneloop pro AAs and changed at lunch. We ran it into a UM400a w/ ipower lithium. Never worried about batt on either.

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Shure probably won't make an RX that fits in a bag in this decade. Yes the Axient stuff sounds excellent but still has a 3MS delay. The delay is in the AD>DA. From what I was told, this wasn't enough of an issue with the current consumers. Shure still always has a place in my kit. 

 

Syncing the frequencies between the rack RX and the TX's on the Shure Axient system is a dream...

 

Funny how they used the Shure UR5 RX chassis for all Axient RX's.

 

My next investment will be a Sony wireless system. 

 

 

 

39 minutes ago, Trey LaCroix said:

When I ran that we used eneloop pro AAs and changed at lunch.

Same here, but with MAHA's. 

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3 hours ago, Erob said:

For those of you running an MM1, what’s your preferred power solution? Do the AA battery’s normally last a good amount of time or do you rig some external source to it? 

 

Two lithium AAs last about three days if you’re powering down during down time. 

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49 minutes ago, Dalton Patterson said:

Yes the Axient stuff sounds excellent but still has a 3MS delay. The delay is in the AD>DA.

 

Axient only has a 2ms delay when in standard mode. Goes to 2.9ms when in high density mode. Don’t see what the problem is here considering lectro digital hybrid is 3ms.

 

I’ve demoed the high end Sony system and it sounds excellent and it’s has a superslot compatible receiver now. I’m demoing the Shure Axient tomorrow. 

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10 hours ago, Patrick Farrell said:

If you're looking for the best, have a look at Shure Axient with the new AD3 plug-on.

The day Shure brings out a SuperSlot Quad RX they'll be taking our industry by storm, seems Shure Axient is already gaining traction with some of the cart based guys.

2 hours ago, Trey LaCroix said:

When I ran that we used eneloop pro AAs and changed at lunch. We ran it into a UM400a w/ ipower lithium. Never worried about batt on either.

Same here, using eneloops. Although the MM1 can accept external 12V Hirose power, I've never ever used that, as the internal AA batteries (plus one swap per day) is easily sufficient. 

 

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On 9/1/2020 at 4:52 PM, Mattias Larsen said:

unfortunately the rumours about that they wanted to enter film and tv market staled and was followed by rumours that they didn't want to focus on that

They have entered our market and plan to stick around. The new plug-on was a direct response to our market. They've also heard our requests for a portable receiver...

But in the meantime, I know several mixers that are happy with the rackmount receivers on their carts.

 

20 hours ago, Dalton Patterson said:

Shure probably won't make an RX that fits in a bag in this decade. Yes the Axient stuff sounds excellent but still has a 3MS delay. The delay is in the AD>DA. From what I was told, this wasn't enough of an issue with the current consumers. Shure still always has a place in my kit. 

Gonna be a short decade then. And as mentioned above, the latency is less than Lectro and definitely not a problem. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 9/1/2020 at 9:45 PM, IronFilm said:

The day Shure brings out a SuperSlot Quad RX they'll be taking our industry by storm, seems Shure Axient is already gaining traction with some of the cart based guys.

Same here, using eneloops. Although the MM1 can accept external 12V Hirose power, I've never ever used that, as the internal AA batteries (plus one swap per day) is easily sufficient. 

 

While I think Shure Axient is amazing and has witnessed it does miracles...  without on Transmitter recording it is just another basic wireless system.

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3 hours ago, RadoStefanov said:

While I think Shure Axient is amazing and has witnessed it does miracles...  without on Transmitter recording it is just another basic wireless system.


For me personally, I don’t much need tx recording. I used a Zax boom for several years and have never needed (or particularly wanted) it. 
What I consider most important above all is how they sound. What does the preamp sound like, how loud is the combined self-noise and what does the data compression sound like. Latency is not among my major concerns, but range comes in after sound. 
Among all digital transmitters I‘ve heard to date, not one excited me. Not one sounded definitively better, than a good analog or digital hybrid. 
So in my opinion, unless they sound better, it’ll jusz be another basic wireless system

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"Best" is a very subjective measure, but I can tell you what I am using with fantastic results....

The Lectrosonics DPR plug on is pretty phenomenal. 

 

FULL DISCLOSURE -- I have been Beta Testing the DPR for several months -- I'm not paid by Lectro, and I have the freedom to post my real world opinions and results. I don't get to keep the gear, and if I want it I have to send back the betya unit and buy my own at full retail.. so there ya go..

 

 

I have plugged it in and listened (side by side A/B style) with the A10 (analog) and a direct copper XLR line into the board.

I then had a couple of friends who are known to have very good ears, be highly attuned to quality gear, and who will give a no nonsense answer, come and spend a day listening to the rig. (Chris Harris and Scott Beatty) Both of these guys are well used to the Lectro brand, but use different gear on their own rigs -- Scott uses Zaxcom, Chris uses the A10 on his boom.

 

The universal consensus was that the DPR, the A10, and the hardline were indistinguishable in anything short of a test lab setting. We did not have the chance to listen to a Zax comparison.

 

Tests were done with music at high and low volume, normal speaking volumes, loud speaking volumes, yelling, and ambient noise. 

No lab settings, just a Midas M32r console, a DPR with D2 and Dante, an A10 TX/RX in analog mode, and a hardline plugged directly into the Midas preamps.
Mics were DPA 4017 and 4018, both plugged into the B preamp. also a set of MKH 50's.
The only oddball item was for the A10. We used the provided cable from the mixer that we borrowed the rig from, which has been modified to deal with unwanted RF noise.

 

Overall impressions were that the DPR has what could be called a zero noise floor. I didn't put a meter on it, so you people who are lab rats, please don't kill me just yet. We just used our ears and the meters and went to work. Because well...the ears tell the tale. and it's dead feckn' quiet.... Dead. Feckn' Quiet.

 

With the DPR I can adjust my overall gain structure lower because there is no discernible STN to overcome, and that results in what is effectively a higher useable dynamic range.
Ranges from a whisper to a scream could be dialed in at a perfectly useable level without having to frantically reach for a fader or gain pot.

 

Audio quality is as pristine as anyone would expect from Lectro, and the digital signal is solid as a rock.

Range is as good as one would expect with any Lectro gear and is on par with the hybrid HMa - The significant part is that DPR runs at 50mw Digital and the HMa runs at 100mw Hybrid

 

Now -- on the set -- This is where it really matters. I have used the DPR on 3 commercials, a movie, 2 tv shows, and several docu-style corporate gigs (yes, even during covid) 

The DPR has been as perfect as any piece of Lectro gear I have ever owned.

Battery life is a solid 6.5 hrs with AA Lithium, signal stability is as it should be, durability is good enough to hit a concrete floor without damage, and the sonic quality is pristine.

 

I don't know if it is the one for you ... but I'll say that you owe it to yourself to take a test drive.

 

Hope this helps --

 

 

Cujo

 

 


 

 

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It is a shame Cojo did not test the Zaxcom Boom wireless products. The two units we offer ZMT phantom and the TRX743 offer features that others do not. The best system for Boom will of course sound great and with neverclip there is no Compressor or limiter distortion on our TRX743. We have been selling 100 percent digital wireless with like a hard wire performance for the last 18 years. It is also the only unit to support AES42 (super cmit) mics transmitting both audio channels at the same time. It also directly supports 2 channel transmission with 5 pin xlr stereo mics. We also support internal recording while transmitting at the same time. Time code is received wirelessly with no need to ever jam with a cable. Remote control is from a very usable distance of up to 500 feet. Our boom products can also remotely replay in sync with any number of bodypack transmitters allowing remixing and re-record of lost audio due to dropouts if there is any interference that blocks transmission . There is no need to remove memory cards to recover audio from the transmitter. Lastly any digital wireless can have great transmission reliability on a boom pole where it is up the air with line of site to the receivers. Zaxcom wireless offers multiple modulations to get the signals to the receiver in harsh reflective environments while resisting interference from cellphones and walkies.  The system is exceptional with body worn transmitters where good reception on digital wireless systems can be difficult to achieve. All of these things make our system unique and powerful for any professional sound mixer. 

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