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Thursday 29th November 2012

Channel 38 For Microphones Jan 2013 - How It Affects You!

As a result of the switchover from analogue to digital TV transmission, access to Channel 69 will be phased out completely by the end of 2012. From 1st January 2013, access to Channel 69 will permanently cease and if you use wireless microphone & in-ear monitoring (IEM) systems you will need to use Channel 38 with a license or a restricted Channel 70 unlicensed.

After the DSO the 800 MHz frequency band will no longer be used for TV broadcast. Ofcom is clearing the 800 MHz band for TV Channels 61-69. TV Channel 69 (854-862 MHz) is currently being used by DJ wireless microphones and in-ear monitoring systems.

TV Channel 38 (606-614MHz) is the official replacement for TV Channel 69 (854-862 MHz) and has been made available nationwide. It will be the only licensed, shared channel available for wireless microphone & IEM users from 1st January 2013.

It is required by law in the UK to be in possession of a license to legally operate radio microphones or IEM's, unless you are using the de-regulated spectrum between 863-865 MHz. You can contact JFMG for more detailed licensing information.

De-regulated, license-free spectrum (863-865 MHz, Channel 70) remains untouched by the DSO. You can carry on using it beyond the 2012 DSO but, it is free and there is very little spectrum available. This limits the number of wireless systems that can be used simultaneously.

Channel 38 is the best option for professional users who need to operate a large number of wireless mic systems and IEM's together either indoors or outdoors. It is the only reliable option for hire, event companies and large scale installations.

Channel 70 is a viable choice for small, low key venues and amateur radio mic users. Due to the limitations discussed, the limited spectrum available will normally only allow the use of no more than four systems depending on location.

For professional fixed and live environments where equipment will only be used in one location, we recommend using the coordinated channel spectrums outside Channel 38. A fixed site license for the event or venue is needed.