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Conference Mics and Systems Tech Showcase

The conference systems and microphones we focus on here, many also known as discussion systems, include the latest features for quick setup, reliable performance, and simple operation by non-techies.

Conference Microphones Tech Showcase

Oct 31, 2011 1:00 PM,
by Bennett Liles

AKG CS 5 conference system

In deliberative bodies such as legislatures and other assemblies, the topics can be intense and the dialogue critical. The discussion must be heard clearly and accomplished without technical glitches. The conference systems and microphones we focus on here, many also known as discussion systems, include the latest features for quick setup, reliable performance, and simple operation by non-techies. Many of the systems include chairman and delegate stations, inputs for media playback and teleconferencing, as well as outputs for sound reinforcement and translation.

The CS 5 conference system from AKG is anchored on the CS 5 BU with all stations connected to it via a closed-circuit Ethernet configuration. The base unit also drives the CS 5 IRT1 and CS 5 IRT2 infrared radiators, which provide up to seven selectable language channels to the system’s CS 5 IRR7 infrared receivers. Users can have up to 64 separate channels assignable to the delegate, chairperson, or interpreter stations. Larger systems can be set up to include control from a central computer using the CS 5 PC control software and up to 5000 participant and interpreter units can work together. The CS 5 BU central unit can also act as an interface to external devices including mixers, wireless microphones, recording devices, CD players, and other equipment.

Apex Electronics Apex145

Apex Electronics created the Apex145 dynamic tabletop gooseneck microphone for conferences, forums, broadcast applications, and emergency communications where fixed mounting is not practical. The microphone, its flexible 18in. gooseneck, and its die-cast weighted base are all integrated. The unit features a built-in switch that toggles on and off with silent operation. The moving coil dynamic element exhibits a cardioid pickup pattern with a frequency response from 100Hz to 12kHz and a sensitivity of -75dB +/-3dB. The unit’s total weight is 55oz., just enough to anchor well on a tabletop and still be easy to move around as needed.

Using ultra-wideband pulse technology in the 6GHz RF range, the Audio-TechnicaSpectraPulse system offers two microphone schemes for conferencing. The system consists of one or two drm141 digital receiver modules, as many as two aci707 audio control interfaces, and up to 14 mtu101 or mtu201 microphone transmitter units. The mtu201 desk stand transmitter can be fitted with a variety of Audio-Technica Engineered Sound gooseneck microphones. The third transmitter option is the mtu301 bodypack transmitter for greater mobility. Frequency setup consists of simply setting the frequency with a switch on each transmitter unit. For added security in this wireless conferencing system Audio-Technica offers an optional encryption package that meets the AES Level 3 128-bit encryption standard. Audio response is from 100Hz to 12kHz with a sampling rate of 24kHz and 16-bit AD/DA converters. The interconnection between the digital receiver module/antenna array and the audio control interface is made with a single shielded Cat-5 cable.

Audix MicroPod

For easy placement and a variety of gooseneck lengths, the MicroPod series from Audix includes the M1250B condenser microphone and a choice of a 6in., 12in., or 18in. gooseneck. There is also a shotgun version (the MicroPod6S) that features the high-output M1255B condenser microphone along with the 6in. gooseneck. These can be used with the optional ATS-10 table stand for conference and discussion systems. There is also a choice of cardioid or hyper-cardioid pickup patterns. The microphones, running on 18-52V phantom power, provide a frequency response from 15Hz to 19kHz. The table stand includes a lighted on/off switch. Each model may also be placed on a standard mic stand when used with the DClip mic stand adapter.

Azden 6-Channel IR conference system

The IRR-106 receiver is at the center of the Azden6-Channel IR conference system with individual volume controls on each channel and the capability to use as many as four IRD-66 or IRD-36 external IR sensors for coverage in large rooms. The unit is run with an external power supply and can be rackmounted. Among the microphone models that can be used in the system are the IRC-51 chairman’s tabletop microphone featuring its own on/off button and a mute button for the IR-56 participant microphones.

Beyerdynamic MCW-D 50

Beyerdynamic introduced the MCW-D 50 conferencing system with 128-bit encrypted wireless transmission and rechargeable battery operation on the microphone units. These consist of the MCW-D 531delegate and MCW-D 533 chairman Revoluto microphone units along with the MCW-D 521 delegate and MCW-D 523 chairman gooseneck mics. The system is anchored on the MCW-D 50 digital discussion control unit with direct sequence spread spectrum modulation in the 2.4Ghz band. Each control unit can allocate channels for up to seven delegate and two chairman mics simultaneously while using an integrated splitter/combiner for diversity RF reception. It can be operated by a PC on a network or by RS-232 while running a Windows-based control application.



Conference Microphones Tech Showcase

Oct 31, 2011 1:00 PM,
by Bennett Liles

Bosch Communications CCS 900 Ultro discussion system

The CCS 900 Ultro discussion system from Bosch Communications can handle conferences with up to 50 microphone stations, one or more of which can be chairman units. The control unit supplies power to the mic stations, coordinates microphone unit operation, provides audio inputs and outputs to the system, and includes an MP3 recorder to record discussions and play them back to the delegates. The recording is done on a removable SD card and when the card is almost full, the CCS-CU control unit provides an audible beep and flashing LED to indicate it is card change time. Each delegate unit includes a microphone and integral speaker and the wiring loops through these stations from the control unit. Each chairman unit additionally has a priority button, a possible-to-speak indication, and programmable chime tone activation.

CAD Audio/Astatic 2800VP

The 2800VP from CAD Audio/Astatic is the podium version of the continuously variable pattern condenser microphone system using remote polar control through a digital signal platform. This capability eliminates the need for changing microphone capsules. A dual conductor shielded cable is connected between the microphone and the DSP unit to enable the remote pattern control, which is done through a PC application connected to the DSP unit via Ethernet. Included is the MB-18, an 18in. matte black flexible gooseneck mic with TA3F and XLRM-type audio connectors along with a 24in. XLRF-to-Phoenix cable. The VP systems have been engineered to resist interference from cell phones, two-way radio devices, and lighting controllers. The mic has a frequency response of 40Hz to 20kHz with a sensitivity figure of -29dBV.

Clockaudio C31E-RF Halo

Clockaudio designed the C31E-RF Halo microphones in a choice of shaft lengths for conference systems, broadcast, house of worship, and paging system applications. This line of microphones shares immunity to RF artifacts, an LED ring to indicate the microphone is on in conferencing, and a flexible gooseneck shaft. The condenser microphone provides a cardioid pattern and operates on 9V-48V phantom power. Current draw is 30mA, and the mic is rated for 125dB SPL. The microphone comes with a 5-pin XLR connector as standard, but it is also available with a 3-pin XLR. The normal finish is satin black, but other colors are available.

Electro-Voice PolarChoice Satellite

The PolarChoice Satellite free-standing, multi-pattern microphone from Electro-Voice can fit Telex and Electro-Voice bodypack transmitters inside its base to make it a wireless desk conferencing mic. The base includes a mute switch that can be programmed for latching on/off or momentary push-to-mute. A blue LED on the top of the base is an indicator for the active mic status. Four selectable polar patterns suit any acoustic environment, and the gooseneck is available in 5in., 12in., or 18in. length. The polar pattern and mute operation switches are located on the bottom of the mic base along with a switchable high-pass filter to reduce noise from mechanical vibration.

JTS Professional ST-850

For dealing with any last-minute changes in the wired or wireless plan, JTS Professional offers the ST-850 microphone, which can work in either mode. Compatible with transmitters such as the PT-900B, PT-850B, PT-920B (G), PT-950B, and PT-990B, the mic can also connect to a wired system directly on the base through a 3-pin XLR. The mute switch on the base works in either wired or wireless mode, and the gooseneck is slightly more than 1ft. long with a flexible bottom half. The back electret condenser mic provides a hypercardioid pattern with a frequency response from 50Hz to 18kHz.

Milab VM-44

The VM-44 gooseneck condenser microphone from Milab has an integral cable over 9ft. long with a preamp built into the XLR connector assembly. It provides a cardioid pattern with interchangeable omnidirectional and supercardioid capsules along with a switchable -12dB pre-attenuation feature. The microphone operates on 12V-52V phantom power and has a 20Hz-20kHz frequency response with a maximum SPL of 148dB. The flexible gooseneck is 4.7in. long. The unit comes in a black finish. Accessories include windscreen, base, and separate phantom power supply.

Peavey PM 18S

For permanent mounting scenarios, Peavey offers the PM 18S condenser gooseneck with dual flex tubing in either a black or white finish. The microphone has a cardioid pickup pattern for best gain before feedback and includes a collet-type mounting flange with mechanical isolation system. It also has an LED power indicator and operates on a 9V-52V phantom power source.




Conference Microphones Tech Showcase

Oct 31, 2011 1:00 PM,
by Bennett Liles

Revolabs FLX conference phone system

Designed for small to mid-size conference rooms, the RevolabsFLX conference phone system has several interchangeable components to enable setup to suit a variety of acoustic environments. The system operates digitally in the 1.9GHz ISM band with an encrypted signal and is available with two or four microphones along with VoIP or analog phone interfaces. With the speaker on a conference table, lapel or tabletop microphones can transmit in any combination. The dialer can also be used as a conventional phone for private conversations at any time during a conference. System audio frequency response is 80Hz to 11kHz, and the FLX can be used as the audio interface for a videoconferencing system.

Samson Technologies CM20P

For conference venues in which permanent microphone positioning may be required along with quick and easy removal, the CM20P fixed charge condenser microphone can be an asset with its directly connecting base and built-in XLR connector. Samson Technologies equipped it with a selectable 100Hz high-pass filter and a 20in. gooseneck featuring a rigid center area and flexible upper and lower sections. The mic is operated on 9V-52V phantom power while offering a 60Hz to 16kHz frequency response, and it comes in a matte black finish. Accessories include a two-stage rippled windscreen, FMS1 standard flange mount for podiums, and SMS1 shock mount.

Sanken CUS-101B

The CUS-101B gooseneck condenser microphone from Sanken can be used in a conference setting with its cardioid pickup pattern exhibiting 20dB attenuation at 180 degrees off-axis. The microphone also has a 20Hz high-pass filter to reduce any mechanical rumble from table vibration. The overall frequency response is 50Hz to 10kHz, and the unit operates on 48V phantom power. The mic has a male XLR connector, which fits into the included TS-101HGN stand base. The mic stem is available in 5in., 9.5in., and 11.8in. lengths. The WM-101 urethane windscreen is available in seven colors contained in a single package.

Sennheiser ADN CU1

For controlling up to 40 connected chairperson and delegate units, Sennheiser offers the ADN CU1 digital discussion central unit. It is controllable through a directly connected keyboard, screen, and mouse using the Conference Manager software application. Or it can be set up with a menu on the front panel. Alternatively, a central media control system can be connected via the Ethernet port on the rear panel. The unit supplies 52.8VDC power and control data through a proprietary network bus to control the discussion units. The ADN C1 chairperson unit features a supercardioid gooseneck microphone with a DSP limiter and twin speaker system in the base. The ADN D1 delegate unit has the same external design along with twin RJ-45 terminals for system connection.

Shure MX405, MX410, MX415

The Microflex line of modular gooseneck microphones from Shure consists of the MX405, MX410, and MX415; these provide gooseneck lengths of 5in., 10in., and 15in. respectively. Available in cardioid and super-cardioid polar patterns, the standard models feature a bi-color status indicator while the R models have a single-color light ring. The base for the desktop models has a programmable mute switch. Base models include both wired and wireless options, and the wireless models are compatible with SLX4 and SLX4L receivers. Dependant on the base option, there is also a logic input/output for remote LED and mute control.

Sony designed the ECM530 tabletop condenser microphone for conferences and lectures with two-way powering on either AA batteries or external 14V-48V phantom power. The 3.5in. diameter stand base firmly anchors the microphone while the gooseneck extends from 12 7/8in. to 17 3/8in. The microphone provides a frequency response of 70Hz to 18kHz and a maximum SPL of 126dB. It comes in a matte black finish with a 6ft. cable terminated with an XLR connector.

Taiden HCS-8318ACE/20

The HCS-8318ACE/20 paperless multimedia congress terminal from Taiden features a 10in. high-resolution 1024×600 LCD touchpanel and an integrated 3-megapixel camera to provide speech, vote, simultaneous interpretation, sign-in, conference documents management, speech text guidance, office documents reader and editor, documents recognition, meeting record, desktop sharing, delegate information, and conference agenda display. It can also take pictures and provide videoconferencing. Similar in appearance to the delegate unit, the chairman unit adds a microphone priority button that switches off all delegate mics. The unit includes a small two-way loudspeaker that mutes automatically when the microphone is on along with a built-in IC card reader and fingerprint identification module.



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