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FCC License

Jeff Wexler

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Nope! One Low Power Broadcast Auxiliary License will cover:

76.00000 - 88.00000 MHz (up to 50mW)

174.00000 - 216.00000 MHz (up to 50mW. Note: ALL Comtek in 216MHz is NOT covered by this license, and is in a band we are NOT supposed to use! When enough of us have licenses, we can negotiate with ComTek.)

470.00000 - 698.00000 MHz (up to 250Mw. All American Lectro freqs.)

Nationwide usage, including Alaska, Hawaii, and all US Territories, for EIGHT years


WooHoo, I just got my acceptance from the FCC, Call Sign WQRB617 !!!!  I did it myself with the help of bill Rucks video on TrewAudio's website and this forum!  However I got a few questions, my expiration date is 12-01-13! this year!!! i thought i would be good for eight years, did I do something wrong? 


Also what now, what can I do to help keep our respective spectrum as is? 


Thanks friends


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This is hard to understand but as far as the FCC is concerned you need to license the number of transmitters IN USE.  Transmitters on the shelf not in use do not count.  Also the owner of the transmitter is not the issue, is the USER of the transmitter.  Rented transmitters need to be used by a licensed person.


Also, a license if for a band of frequencies.  The exact frequency of the transmitter is not licensed as long as it is within the band that is on the license.


I normally apply for the low band VHF frequencies 54-72 and 76-88 MHz, the high band VHF frequencies 174-216 MHz, and the UHF band 494-608 and 614-698 MHz.


Note that the band 608-614 MHz is not available because it is reserved world wide for astronomical research.


In most major areas there are UHF TV channels that are allocated to Part 90 Land Mobile and are not available for Broadcast Auxiliary Low Power use.  Those channels are mostly used by Public Safety.


An application that I tried to work around limitations was recently granted so I now have a template to license the entire UHF TV band from 470-698 MHz (except for 608-614 MHz).   Since that worked I will now use that template for all new applications.


Bill Ruck

San Francisco

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I participated in several frequency coordination meetings at the NAB.  The main topic for these meetings was who was going to be gored in the near future.


First, no user of any radio frequency spectrum is sacred.  The Department of Defense may lose some of their spectrum.


Second, I was told that the FCC considers intermittent use of radio spectrum by wireless microphones to be spectrum inefficient.  The FCC has been snowed by the wireless broadband industry.


Third, if large users like the NFL are getting blown off by the FCC then the typical production audio guy has less standing.


If you are not involved in NFL games you might be interested that a "typical" NFL game uses several hundred UHF frequencies; Monday Night (and the other big televised games) use about twice that; and the Super Bowl used 2,500 frequencies!


Holding a license may not hold off the wireless tsunami; holding a license at least makes the FCC count you as a user.


Note that all new licenses are including this Condition:


Fixed BAS and Low Power Auxiliary Stations in the UHF TV band are licensed on a secondary basis to existing -and future- primary operations and cannot cause harmful interference to primary operations not claim protection from harmful interference from primary operations.  In accordance with the spectrum provisions of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 ("the Spectrum Act"), broadcast TV channel assignments could be reorganized and some UHF TV spectrum (470-698 MHz) could be allocated for flexible use and assigned by competitive bidding.  These future assignments to primary licenses could require all existing and future BAS and Low Power Auxiliary stations to stop existing secondary operations and/or to change frequencies or bands at their own expense.


Translation of FCC-speak:


"flexible use" is broadband


"competitive bidding" is selling off public spectrum to balance the budget


For most people this is well beyond their interest and not on their radar.  But if one is making a living with wireless microphones and/or wireless IFB and camera links, be afraid.  Be REALLY afraid.


Bill Ruck

San Francisco

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" The Department of Defense may lose some of their spectrum. "

well, at least "supposedly" ... but in reality, they take and use whatever they want!


" a "typical" NFL game uses several hundred UHF frequencies; Monday Night (and the other big televised games) use about twice that; and the Super Bowl used 2,500 frequencies! "

thus my lack of sympathy for those who claim, or worry that they cannot find several usable frequencies in each and every block.

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Just got my license after submitting in early January. 


I had to amend my license because I put in multiple locations, each for every frequency range.  The proper way is to put in one location and then multiple frequencies as "add frequencies".  I used a combination of emission designators, including 180KF3E and 200KF3E.  In lectrosonics specifications for its SMQV, it clearly lists the emission designator for that unit, 180KF3E.  For all other transmitters, usually the emission designator was not indicated and I went with the default 200KF3E.  I'm sure if you call the {hat}, you could find that information out. 


My license is good till the end of 2014 and I live in the San Francisco bay area.  Might be a good gauge for those licensing up in the area. 


Take care all!


Paul Dorough


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  • 5 weeks later...

What we've been waiting for...


Under Bill's guidance, Laurence Abrams has created a step-by-step, fairly goof-proof, on-line application process (oh it is magnificent!).




Takes about an hour, but you can start and stop. When done, hit the submit button and it goes directly to the FCC. When accepted, they notify you via email, pay the $145 fee on-line, and the license comes in the mail a month or two later.


The General Membership of IATSE Local 695 has decided that this issue is SO important, that it has made this process available to anyone - not just 695 members. Yeah...FREE!


BTW - Renewal.  License renewal is done by zones. If the renewal date in your zone is in two years, so be it. Next time around your license will be good for the full term.


White space registration: Register your home, shop and studio as "in use" 24/7. Though it is impossible to register all hit and miss locations, do your best to register at least 24 hours ahead. Look for mobile apps to come.


Look for a general announcement from Jeff on this topic.


Why get a license? Bottom line, the FCC acknowledges our existence and importance in the entertainment industry. Part 74 has rules specific to us, and when we become a group of hundreds of licensed users, we will have a good voice.


Take care...

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hi everyone:


I just received my license the other day (with the help of Bill Ruck, who was essential... thanks again, Bill)... effective 6-11-2013, expires 8-1-2013. I may have the record for the shortest effective license issued... anyone else gotten one with a shorter effective time?



BG (WQRL413)


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  • 3 weeks later...

If you've been looking at the step-by-step guide we created for those filling out the FCC part 74 application, your feedback and suggestions would be appreciated. Let us know what you think and tell us if you've submitted the app. Again, the guide (and other related info) is at http://www.695.com/fcc/how-to-get-a-license.

The guide was very helpful. I'm waiting for my license now.


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  • 3 weeks later...

You might try contacting the ARRL, they would be able to help you contact a local examiner and local radio clubs in your area. That person or persons could have knowledge in local classes. The Y, a local community college, the Red Cross, a local radio club all come to mind. Back when I got my license a couple of hams offered classes that met each week at the local Red Cross office.


David (been haming now for 45 years)

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  • 1 month later...

Thanks David, I'm looking for specifically classes and examiners. Finding it hard to track people down in my area, so considering online course or traveling to find an in person one. 


Couple places to try:






You can also practice the exam (all levels) here:



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  • 2 weeks later...

" H.R.2911 (visit link), sponsored by Illinois congressman Bobby Rush and introduced into the House of Representatives on August 1, 2013. This straightforward bill has two main aspects to safeguard the continued viability of wireless microphones. "


good news / bad news...


" If your organization makes significant use of wireless microphones and similar devices, obtaining Part 74 licenses will give you priority over unlicensed users for the particular spectrum and location. If a dispute arises, having the license allows you to keep operating and the interferer will need to change frequencies and/or stop operating..."


"the bill would expand the legitimate, licensed-use categories for wireless mics and similar devices beyond the original TV broadcast and motion picture production applications, as specified in the 1970’s-era FCC Part 74 regulations, to include shows, events, and other common uses. Ten new user categories are proposed within the bill: arenas, convention centers, amusement parks, educational facilities, houses of worship, lodging facilities, museums, outdoor venues, recording studios, and theatres.  "



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Received my license last week.  Thank you to 695 for their excellent tutorial which helped me tremendously when doing the application myself.  Thanks to everyone who is part of this discussion as well, I have been following this closely for several years now, and this discussion is a big part of why I have to chosen to become active in the debate and get licensed.

Call Sign:  WQSC710


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Thank you to 695 for their excellent tutorial which helped me tremendously when doing the application myself.


Love to hear that.  Just a reminder for U.S. wireless users who still don't have a Part 74 FCC license...


- Here is a helpful explanation of WHY you should get a Part 74 license:



- Here is detailed information about HOW to get the Part 74 license:


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  • 4 weeks later...

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