Strother Bullins on Audio-Technica System 10 Pro

2.4GHz wireless system offers modern appeal
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Budget-conscious audio pros, venues, and discriminating DIY musicians can benefit greatly from the 2.4GHz technology now available in many wireless systems. It’s the most user-friendly range of wireless transducer technology (probably ever); it’s irresistibly affordable; and it sounds great. The 24-bit/48 kHz ATW-1312 package from A-T ($1,089 list)—a dual-channel bodypack/handheld system—is an ideal example of 2.4GHz’s modern appeal.

A System 10 PRO rig is comprised of a half rack-mount chassis with two receiver unit slots. Via Ethernet, each rig’s receivers can also be mounted remotely, up to 300ft. away from the chassis—a considerable savings in applications where normally an antenna distributor must be employed. Five System 10 PRO chassis can be linked via RJ12 cabling for a total of 10 channels per system.

System 10 PRO features include the LCD Dual System Display with RF signal level, system ID, transmitter battery level, and system link status for both channels. Its Frequency Diversity feature utilizes dual auto-selected frequencies per channel. Time Diversity uses multiple time slots per channel to avoid multipath interference; and Space Diversity is accomplished via two antennas per transmitter and receiver. Each System 10 PRO rack-mount system includes an ATWRC13 receiver chassis, one or two ATW-RU13 receiver units, one or two AT8690 receiver-unit mounting brackets, one RJ12 cable, two rack-mounting brackets, one joining plate, one AC adaptor, and one or two ATW-T1001 UniPak bodypack and/or ATW-T1002 handheld transmitters. Our ATW-1312 review unit features two receivers, one bodypack, and one handheld.

The ATW-1312 system is incredibly easy to use. Handheld-wise, the ATW-T1002 is a solid, good-sounding microphone with a multifunction, A-T logoed “press/hold” style button on its end for intuitive channel selection, on/off, and mute switching. Its mid-body positioned LED window offers a bright-blue number indicating channel plus green and red lights for “on” and “mute” indicators, respectively.

In a variety of venues and applications—metropolitan club/venue, house of worship, outdoor and residential/rehearsal—the System 10 PRO performed well, whether via handheld or bodypack. Vocalists specifically commented on the clear, open sound of the ATW-T1002 handheld and appreciated its simple design, feel, and overall build quality, the latter proven by one or two impromptu concrete floor drops.

When pushing the far limits of its range (with both receivers in the chassis), the System 10 PRO never “broke up,” rather signal level temporarily sagged in just a few spots; this only happened in arguably unrealistic performance scenarios: walking outside of a rock-walled house of worship and into an adjacent concrete building, for example. Considering that the system’s dual ATW-RU13 can be remote-mounted up to 600ft. away from each other (with the chassis in the middle), the System 10 PRO provides more than ample available range to work with for most every application.

I’ve been sold on the license-free/2.4GHz wireless concept since my review of Line 6’s early wireless systems years ago. Today, these systems are proven and just keep getting better and better. A-T’s System 10 PRO is a solid, flexible, and scalable wireless investment that I will enthusiastically recommend.

Strother Bullins is NewBay Media’s reviews editor, AV/Pro Audio Group, active musician, recordist, and club-level sound reinforcement wrangler. sbullins@nbmedia.com

PRODUCT SUMMARY

COMPANY: Audio-Technica | audio-technica.com
PRODUCT: Audio-Technica System 10 PRO 2.4 GHz Wireless System
PROS: User-friendly and intuitive; clean and open sound
CONS: Limited to 10 channels per system
APPLICATIONS: Small-to-medium club/venue, house of worship, outdoor and residential/rehearsal.
PRICE (LIST): $1,089

SPECIFICATIONS

OVERALL SYSTEM SPECIFICATIONS

• Operating Frequencies: 2.4GHz ISM band
• Dynamic Range: >109dB (A-weighted), typical
• Total Harmonic Distortion: <0.05% typical
• Operating Range: 200ft. (open-range environment with no interfering signals)
• Frequency Response: 20Hz to 20kHz (depending on mic type)

RECEIVER SPECIFICATIONS

• Receiving System: Diversity
• Output Connectors: Remote Receiver Connector, RJ45; Link Connector, RJ12
• Dimensions: 8.26” x1.73”x 6.67”
• Net Weight: 33.2oz.
• Accessories Included: Power supply, AC adapter, link cable, rack-mount adapters, joining plate, rubber feet

BODY PACK TRANSMITTER SPECIFICATIONS

• RF Power Output: 10mW
• Spurious Emissions: Following federal and national regulations
• Input Connections: Four-pin locking connector
• Batteries: Two 1.5V AA (not included)
• Battery Life: >7 hours (alkaline)
• Dimensions: 2.76” x4.21”x 0.98”
• Net Weight: 3.5oz. (without batteries)

HANDHELD TRANSMITTERS SPECIFICATIONS

• RF Power Output: 10mW
• Spurious Emissions: Following federal and national regulations
• Batteries: Two 1.5V AA (not included)
• Battery Life: >7 hours (alkaline)
• Dimensions: 10.03” long, 1.97” diameter
• Net Weight: 9.9oz. (without batteries)
• Accessory Included: AT8456a Quiet-Flex stand clamp

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