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#2474892 - 02/28/13 06:17 AM Wireless PA snake?
Strategery Offline
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Registered: 02/24/07
Posts: 3232
Loc: Georgia USA
Hi folks,

This may not be the right forum, but with the ever changing technology, I have a question sparked by a recent GC trip the other day.

I saw some new Wireless speakers there.
They sounded good in the store but not sure of the quality.

So this got me to wondering....
Is there a Wireless PA snake in the works?

I did a google search and found where a guy started working on one back in 1976 and applied for a patent.
WOW...that far back?
Still...there is not one for sale and I wonder how feasible such a product is.
Could there be one in the future, eliminating those cumbersome 100+ footers that we all have to roll out and set up on stage and at the mixer.

I was thinking...with todays' digital technology...that one may be coming in the near future.
Kind of like a Mac...FACE TIME between Stage and Mix. rawk

Randy


Edited by Strategery (02/28/13 06:20 AM)
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#2474929 - 02/28/13 08:42 AM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: Strategery]
Winston Psmith Offline
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Registered: 02/15/10
Posts: 1918
Loc: Inside the Beltway
I think the issue is less about the available technology, than available bandwidth. The expanding market for smartphones, tablets, and wi-fi game controllers is the issue.

I worked in a guitar store for some years, and and around 2007/8?, we got a notice that the U.S. gov't was taking back certain frequency bands that had previously been available for wireless mics & guitars, the result being that we had a big, expensive pile of soon-to-be-useless wireless packs. I'm sure they're still turning up at yard sales and thrift stores. . . .
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#2474930 - 02/28/13 08:50 AM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: Winston Psmith]
Larryz Offline
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Registered: 06/23/08
Posts: 5411
Loc: Hwy 49, California
http://www.ezprogear.com/index.php/v2go-uhf-847u-4-channel-handheld-wireless-microphone.html <---- couldn't you just use wireless mic's? This system has a 24 mic 6 set system available. You would probably just need to come up with instrument vs vocal mic's but it should be possible... idk

ps. it has a 300 foot operating range and up to 64 frequencies, you would think that the FCC would give a pass to transmitting and receiving systems with such a short operating range as we are still selling and using them, to include ear monitor systems. Kind of like outlawing cordless telephones...


Edited by Larryz (02/28/13 09:01 AM)
Edit Reason: ps

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#2474931 - 02/28/13 08:53 AM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: Winston Psmith]
Fusker Offline
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Registered: 04/20/09
Posts: 1178
Loc: Moscow, Idaho
Wireless is the dream, but providing a solution to dethrone the "single wired" snake seems far fetched to me at his point in time. I mean, at a certain point, everything going into the snake on stage involves a wire at some point.

This type of Wireless is the more likely path, but again, everyone in a band needs to be on board with having an ipad with this scenario. Basically each person having a local station sending a signal to the board wirelessly, so no snake needed, is possible...but the level of investment needed by all members makes using a snake a far more realistic solution.


Edited by Fusker (02/28/13 11:19 AM)
Edit Reason: English enhancement
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#2474948 - 02/28/13 09:43 AM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: Fusker]
CEB Offline
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Registered: 06/03/09
Posts: 6656
Originally Posted By: Winston Psmith
I think the issue is less about the available technology, than available bandwidth. The expanding market for smartphones, tablets, and wi-fi game controllers is the issue.
.....


This. Everything will need it's own channel so does everything require it's own little transceiver? Our typical PA setup has 6 vocal inputs, 2 channel for my keys, one for bass, one acoustic guitar, 2 electric guitars, 5 monitor sends, FOH sends, and Way too many drums mics. We are talking probably 26-30 channels. So just like what Fusker says you are talking about 30 wires.


Edited by CEB (02/28/13 09:45 AM)
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#2474995 - 02/28/13 12:03 PM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: CEB]
Larryz Offline
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Registered: 06/23/08
Posts: 5411
Loc: Hwy 49, California
I still think my wireless mic(s) idea would work. You have 6 four channel receivers at the 24 channel mixing board 100' in out front. 2 four channel receivers handle 8 vocal mics going into the board. 2 four channel receivers handle 8 instrument mics (ie. guitar amps, bass amp, keyboard amp, acoustic and wind instruments) and the 2 remaining receivers gives you 8 more mics for your drums and any other leftovers...there would be no need for snake wires. Since you have 64 frequencies you could leave one unused space between each mic channel...You could test the theory with just the 4 mic setup for $399 (see above) and if it doesn't work send it back. I don't know how well they would work as instrument and amp mic's but that could be part of the research.

I have never liked wireless mics as they seem to always have had problems and wired systems seem to avoid them (ie. feedback, volume, tone, balance and others when combined with wired mics, etc.) but that's the old days talk'en and they probably have the bugs worked out as you see so many of them on stage everyday now. It would be fun to fool around with it if I really needed to.

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#2475028 - 02/28/13 01:35 PM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: Strategery]
Scott Fraser Offline
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Registered: 03/20/05
Posts: 3912
Loc: Los Angeles
As someone in the PA system profession I can tell you that you really do not want 24 or 32 channels of wireless for a club gig. The technology certainly exists now, & has been in place for quite some time. Broadway musicals routinely run that many wireless channels, however, they have a crew of people who do nothing but wrangle radio channels, change batteries & keep track of which cast member has which transmitter in which costume throughout the course of a given show. And they rely on systems vastly more expensive than anybody here would want to spend, along with a computer dedicated to searching for clear channels in any given venue. You don't want it.

What you want is to leave all the audio on stage, & run the system mix control data down a single cat5 ethernet cable, so the FOH mixer is not handling audio but sending control data to the brain on stage. This is not only the future, it is the present. That's how I mixed last night's Laurie Anderson & Kronos Quartet gig at the Perth Festival in Western Australia, & it's how more & more serious concert installations are done. It will trickle down to the club & bar gig level pretty soon.
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#2475047 - 02/28/13 02:55 PM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: Scott Fraser]
Larryz Offline
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Registered: 06/23/08
Posts: 5411
Loc: Hwy 49, California
Nope, I can't stand relying on batteries and you would have to change 24 of them before each show or take your chances. Hard wire has it's advantages for us little club muffins. I don't trust the batteries in my pedals and never use them. I have to have a power supply. I can go a long time on guitar batteries, at least 30 hours. I like the concept of sending control data to the brain on stage, when you're in the big time...

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#2475062 - 02/28/13 05:20 PM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: Larryz]
Strategery Offline
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Registered: 02/24/07
Posts: 3232
Loc: Georgia USA
I am agreeing with most everything being said here and I for sure understand the problems a wireless snake would involve because I am usually the sound man because I've always owned my own PA system through the years.

@ Scott...I think I am more on your way of thinking.
I was thinking more of still having your typical setup on stage with everyone wired into the snake receptacle, having it powered into a 110v outlet, and then somehow transmitted to a single receiver that is still plugged into each individual channel on the mixer like normal.
Maybe a ROUTER kind of deal...still, would have to have the bandwidth.
Maybe Captain Kirk would have used a line of sight laser beam to transmit it. wink

I know this is pie in the sky...just thinking out loud.
Damn it...I wish I had the technical smarts to figure this one out and retire. rawk

Randy
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#2475089 - 02/28/13 07:50 PM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: Strategery]
picker Offline
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#2475121 - 03/01/13 05:31 AM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: picker]
Winston Psmith Offline
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Registered: 02/15/10
Posts: 1918
Loc: Inside the Beltway
Just looked at the Mackie in Picker's post, and while the controller is wireless, it still sounds like a conventional mixer otherwise. The copy talks about the sound engineer being able to control the mix from anywhere in the venue, via the iPad, but there's no indication that the audio connections are wireless, if I'm understanding it correctly.

BTW, having read Scott's post, I feel much more kindly towards the legion of audio and MIDI cables I've accumulated.


Edited by Winston Psmith (03/01/13 05:35 AM)
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#2475177 - 03/01/13 08:59 AM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: Winston Psmith]
Fusker Offline
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Registered: 04/20/09
Posts: 1178
Loc: Moscow, Idaho
It's what I linked in my post too. Basically, it allows every band member with an ipad to control their own monitor mix (among other things)remotely...I believe it supports up to 10 devices, if memory serves me correctly.

So taking things another step, it's not hard to envision the potential of each band member having a station on stage they plug into, that then connects to the master board wirelessly.

Maybe one day, but as of now, I'll stick with a $400 snake and the wire hassle.


Edited by Fusker (03/01/13 09:02 AM)
Edit Reason: English enhancement
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#2475180 - 03/01/13 09:09 AM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: Fusker]
Winston Psmith Offline
Platinum Member

Registered: 02/15/10
Posts: 1918
Loc: Inside the Beltway
Originally Posted By: Fusker
Basically, it allows every band member with an ipad to control their own monitor mix (among other things)remotely...I believe it supports up to 10 devices, if memory serves me correctly.


A soundman's worst nightmare - "More ME!" with wireless controllers. Hm, there's got to be a video game in there somewhere.

"Coming soon to X-Box! BOARD WARS! Control the mix! Crush the lead vocals! Dunk the drums! It's all about YOU!!!"
_________________________
"Monsters are real, and Ghosts are real too. They live inside us, and sometimes, they win." Stephen King

http://4-4-2music.bandcamp.com/album/figures-of-speech

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#2475237 - 03/01/13 12:18 PM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: Fusker]
CEB Offline
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Registered: 06/03/09
Posts: 6656
Originally Posted By: Fusker
It's what I linked in my post too. Basically, it allows every band member with an ipad to control their own monitor mix (among other things)remotely...I believe it supports up to 10 devices, if memory serves me correctly.
...


That is a great idea, especially for IEMs.
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#2475254 - 03/01/13 12:56 PM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: Winston Psmith]
Larryz Offline
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Registered: 06/23/08
Posts: 5411
Loc: Hwy 49, California
Originally Posted By: Winston Psmith
Originally Posted By: Fusker
Basically, it allows every band member with an ipad to control their own monitor mix (among other things)remotely...I believe it supports up to 10 devices, if memory serves me correctly.


A soundman's worst nightmare - "More ME!" with wireless controllers. Hm, there's got to be a video game in there somewhere.

"Coming soon to X-Box! BOARD WARS! Control the mix! Crush the lead vocals! Dunk the drums! It's all about YOU!!!"



+1 Winston...you have to keep all those little greedy fingers away from the mixer. On the otherhand it doesn't matter what they do with their monitors as long as they don't screw up the stage volume using a Marshal stack for a monitor. Musicians should be able to craft their own sound and send it to the board. The final out to the mains is going to be controlled by the soundman and if your sending signal is a bunch of mush, your mic isn't going out to the audience until you correct it, even though you think you sound like Elvis on you IEM. We all have to just get along. When I run the sound, I keep other fingers off of the board. Just tell me what you want and I'll make the adjustments. My harp player wants more verb, I give him as much as he needs. My acoustic with no tone or volume controls wants more volume, bass and less treble, I give him what he needs. People like to come up and twist knobs when you're not looking and that's a no no, as those are my expensive speakers not theirs...Ipad or other monitor amp sends can be controlled like anyother mic, DI or mic'ed amp IMHO.

With wireless mic's, Ipads, IEM's and guitars, the days of wires all over the stage are slowly going bye bye on big venues...and on smaller clubs, the snakes and cords will be around awhile longer (and are still much appreciated)...


Edited by Larryz (03/01/13 12:59 PM)
Edit Reason: sp

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#2475620 - 03/03/13 03:35 PM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: Larryz]
Strategery Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 02/24/07
Posts: 3232
Loc: Georgia USA
Great comments.

How about something like this as a basic idea?

http://tinyurl.com/cfsw5vc

One more....of course at its basic and just to show concept.
But somewhere down the road, could line of sight laser carry enough individual audio data to make this happen....or would pot smoke disrupt this idea? wink rawk


http://tinyurl.com/benvgbt


Edited by Strategery (03/03/13 04:02 PM)
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#2475691 - 03/04/13 08:04 AM Re: Wireless PA snake? [Re: Strategery]
Larryz Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 06/23/08
Posts: 5411
Loc: Hwy 49, California
There are laser optics being used for data and telecommunitcations which I'm sure will cut through the fog...but why bother when we have radio, computers, Ipad, wifi, cell phones, etc., that have all the wireless transmitting and receiving technology available to us already? I guess the laser optics could replace Scott's ethernet cable which has replaced the snake... cool

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