Sennheiser EW112PG3A Wireless Kit with EK 100 G3 Diversity Receiver Frequency Band A (Range: 516-558 MHZ) Review
(More customer reviews)With the exodus from 700 mhz due to the FCC reallocation, Shure and Sennheiser are improving their next generation (this is a 3rd gen which arrived May-Jun 2010) systems to have more coverage and features. Here are the highlights:
0- if you are looking for the cardioid pickup pattern version of this mic - the wireless parts are the same - you can read this review to get that info then click here to get the 172 microphone specifics (sennheiser just changes out the microphone) Sennheiser ew 112-p G3 Omni Lavalier Microphone Wireless System, CH B
1 - Mic Attenuator - programmable 0 to -60dB in 3db steps covers a 1 million:1 range of input signals. That's more than the range from a guitar to line level.
2 - frequencies - bands preprogrammed or user defined - plug in your clear channels to 25 khz
3 - output Attenunator - programmable from +12 dBm line level to - 36 dBm by 6db steps (mic level to line level out)
4 - output for 3.5mm TRS or 3 pin XLR male both included
5 - "hidden" diversity antenna is the shield in the receiver output cable (in case you wonder where the 2nd antenna is! - graph shows which antenna is used.
6 - cooperation with FCC in issuing new digital TV frequencies guarantees in 42 Mhz to find at least one 6 Mhz block of *FREE* space somewhere, and sennheiser supports this on their website to find your free space by zipcode.
7 - mic and output cables both feature screwdown locks on the transmitter box to prevent tug-out
8 - IR downlink sends receiver programming of clear channels to transmitter without user intervention.
9 - professional designed audio compander ensures exceptional "wired" sound quality performance
10 - compatible with rackmount versions of the receiver as well, and can co-exist with IEM wireless systems or 300 series ethernet connected to ensure zero interferance.
11 - tx has 30 mW output over entire battery range thanks to internal dc/dc converter and was designed to run from 2.4VDC rather than 3.0VDCI've used the G2 and G3 - they are cross compatible with each other and the G1 (which lacked a pilot tone, so you must turn off pilot on the receiver to use with G1 transmitters - thats the only reason you would ever disable the pilot tone) Note however that each series has had a wider range of frequencies, so compatibility is from a newer receiver to older transmitter over all old transmitter frequencies.
The receiver also includes a clip on hotshoe mount (with no contacts) to mount it to most cameras
Altogether this is a great mono system, use 2 for stereo. The azden cam-3 AZDEN CAM-3 On-Camcorder Mini Audio Mixer gives you a 3-in 1-out stereo mixer that fits on your recorder to handle 2 mono and 1 stereo source (I have a review there - I never go recording without the cam3)
The Sennheiser has a nice advantage over the Shure UHF-R ($1999) system - it operates off 2.4 V from nimh cells and using the sanyo 2700 mah sets you can get 16 hours of use Sanyo 2,700 mAh AA NiMH Rechargeable Batteries (4-Pack). Shure insists on alkaline 1.5 V cells for full runtime. Both the sennheiser receiver and transmitter use 2AAs each and even have a pc board trace so the batteries are put in the same way - not one forward, one backward as you would think with most radios.
This is an exceptionally flexible wireless vocal / instrument system with wired quality sound. You won't regret the flexibility of pro quality equipment. By using standard 3.5 mm TRS jacks you can plug other audio sources into the transmitter for handheld mics or other devices. Sometimes it is the fastest way to get a 3.5 mm signal matched to an XLR input which is why I keep 2 sets of these in my camera bag.
If you have questions for someone who has logged hours of use on both the shure and sennheiser systems, my email is in my profile. I also use the senn EW300G3 systems which are one notch better than this - last I checked they were not camera mountable for the receiver, but the 1/2 rack receiver did include the ability to do ALOT more, for example it has LAN connectivity to find a good channel, the lavalier or handheld mic sends digital data to the receiver subaudible to tell you the microphone pattern depending what head you have screwed onto the handheld mic and the battery level of the speaker's microphone so you are not caught offguard when they are running low (the backlit display turns from orange to red to alert you of any errors also on the 300 series, but its meant for installed applications rather than portable applications) - that's where the letter P comes from in EW112PG3 - the P in PG3 means the receiver is portable as is the transmitter and this is a lavalier version - they make handheld microphones with portable receivers also in the 100 series. The 300 series is better if you have multiple microphones running at the same time since you can put 2 half rack receivers next to each other on a rackmount system and get a well organized wireless mic console. The lan connections duplicate all the functions on the front panel on your pc which can reconfigure the systems for different scenes in a play for example - the 300 is one step up from the 100 which is a really good entry point. For permanent installs consider the EW300G3 series of computer (ethernet) controlled receivers from professional audio suppliers.
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Sennheiser EW112PG3A Wireless Kit with EK 100 G3 Diversity Receiver Frequency Band A (Range: 516-558 MHZ)