Don Boomer from Line 6 was kind enough to send a few wireless units to the Road Test. I received a pair of handheld mics, and a pair of lavalier mics.
First, a bit about the systems. They work on the 2.4GHz band, so they can be used all over the world. The systems have 12 channels to pick from, but in some instances, more than 12 can be used in the same building. (more on that later)
Don told me that they are looking at using some different frequency ranges so more than 12 systems can be used on the same stage.
The mics have a stated 300 feet / 100 meter range. I did an experiment with a lav unit and found it will transmit a lot farther than that, but for my uses, a few hundred feet is more than enough.
These use 24 bit digital conversion , so there is no companding, transmit 10Hz-20kHz, and the dynamic range is stated as 115dB.
There are also some remote antenna options available from Line 6.
The mics come well packed in a box with foam. Sorry about the pics, they are from my phone.http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e97/soundguyCraig/line%206/Line6boxinside.jpg
Inside the box are the transmitter in case, the receiver, 2 antennas, the power supply, the rack mounting hardware, a plastic joiner bar (for hooking up 2 units in 1 rack space), remote antenna jacks for the rack panel, and the instructions.
A quick bit about the instructions. There are only a FEW pages to read! Very simple units to use.
Lets start with the receiver. The unit is well built with a solid felling metal body. The front has a power switch, a button for setup, and a button to exit the setup screen. There is a select knob that you can turn and access the various options. The center of the front has a screen that shows what channel you are on, and the transmitter name, antenna diversity strength, as well as the menus.,
3 bar graphs are on the left side, one for audio, one for battery power, and one for RF.There is also a MUTE light.http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e97/soundguyCraig/line%206/Line6rackmount.jpg
The picture shows the 2 rack ears for mounting as single unit.
The rear of the receiver has 2 antenna inputs, 2 antenna OUTPUTS for loopthrough, XLR balanced and 1/4" unbalanced outputs and the DC power jack for the wall wart.http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e97/soundguyCraig/line%206/Line6receiverrear.jpg
The slots on the tops and sides of the unit allows you to use the plastic joiner bar and couple the units together. 2 units can fit in 1 rack space, and they can also be joined top to bottom.
The mics come in a nice padded case. They would offer good protection if you store the mics in a rack drawer or mic box.http://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e97/soundguyCraig/line%206/Line6miccase.jpghttp://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e97/soundguyCraig/line%206/Line6miccaseinside.jpghttp://i37.photobucket.com/albums/e97/soundguyCraig/line%206/Line6lavcase.jpg
The handheld mic is well build and feels good in my hand. It comes with a nice mic clip. The mic head can be removed and any Shure style head can be screwed on, (including the ones from Heil). The mic uses 2 AA batteries, and has a nice secure battery compartment in the base. On the side of the mic there is a small screen that can display the mic name, and chan number. Recessed mute (also power) and select switches are under the screen. There is a lock button inside the mic by the battery compartment that will lock out the menus as well as the power switch. A great feature as I hate people flipping the power and mute switches on wireless after I hand it to them.
The handheld (and the lav) can run in 2 power modes. The lo mode helps conserve battery life, and can help when using multiple systems near each other (more on that later)
The handheld mic features MIC MODELING technology. The mics are based on an SM58, Beta58, Senn E835, AT4100, Audix 0M5, and one called the L6 which they based on a few favorite features of different mics.
The lav transmitter is built like a tank! It uses the same TA4F connector that Shure uses on its lav systems. The body has a screen, select and value buttons. Pressing both buttons acts as the lock. On the end of the transmitter are a power switch and mute button, as well as battery and power lights.
The belt clip can be loosened and turned in any direction for ease of mounting. This is a nice feature! Also, the battery compartment has a great secure lock.
The lav mic has a sturdy tie clip and a small windscreen.
First impressions: The receivers are well built and I like the fact that the company designed them so you don't have to buy additional parts to mount them together. I also love the antenna looping feature.
The handheld mic has a great battery compartment. The lav transmitter is the most rugged belt pack I have ever seen, and I love the lockout feature on both mics.
Now the fun part! I tested the gear at my shop and had it up and running in no time. The units are very easy to program.
The handheld sounds good and the mic modeling definitely changes the sound, but not having most of the models of mics at my disposal, I cannot say one way or another if they all sound like the models they were based on. Handling noise is minimal, and the sound quality is excellent.
The beltpack was just as easy to program and I noticed that when you turned the pack on or off there were no thumps through the system.
The lav microphone that is included in the set is not in the same league as the rest of the components. Its an OK mic, but not one I would pick on its own. Like many tiny lav mics, it has handling noise, but this mic seems to have more than I would like.
No problem, as I already have a large supply of lav mics with TA4s, so I just swapped the mic out and used some Shures to test the lav transmitter. With the new mics, audio quality was excellent.
I took the mics out to a few gigs. The first was a small speech gig outdoors with a local politician. I used a handheld on her, and used one as the podium mic. With the receivers at FOH, I turned the transmitters on HI Power and had no problems.
The next gig was a standard corporate general session with breakouts. I used the mics in the breakout rooms that were next to each other. Here is where these mics shine. In one room I had a lav on LO power, and the receiver placed next to stage right on chan 1. In the NEXT ROOM, I set up a lav on LO power with the receiver placed stage left (furthest point away from the receiver next door) and also placed that on CHAN 1.
They both worked! With only about 100' and an airwall between the receivers, I could have used them both on the same channel if I wanted to. So, yes, there are only 12 channels available, but in some situations like on a second festival stage a few hundred feet away, or breakout rooms, you can use more than 12 units on the gig if you put the transmitters on LO power.
* Easy To Use
* Receivers very sturdy and can be joined together
* Antenna Loop Through feature
* Rack mounting hardware included
* Mic modeling can come in handy
* Lav Transmitter built like a tank!
* Uses TA4 connectors for lavs
* On one stage, no more than 12 units an be used
* Lavalier mic has handling noise
* I dislike wall warts
Overall, I think these mics are a winner. Even though I hate wall warts, the ones included are small and lightweight. These mics have made my "BUY LIST"!
To read the replies to the above post on the archived forum, click this linkhttp://srforums.prosoundweb.com/index.php/m/586054/47/#msg_586054