Wireless microphones are becoming increasingly common; in last week’s blog post we spoke about the difference between UHF and VHF. This week we are talking about the usage of channel 38 and channel 70 for wireless microphone systems.  

Over the past few years, many performers, DJ’s and venues have been concerned over the lack of available operating frequencies; and many microphone brands developed digital wireless microphone systems.

In January 2013 the government initiated a digital TV switchover that enabled every home in the UK to receive a digital TV signal through their aerial. By implementing this plan, it meant that all analogue transmissions were stopped completely allowing the government more broadcasting space, and using the available transmission frequencies for other use. However these available transmission frequencies meant that frequency bands available to wireless microphones had to be changed so that they were in line with those used in the rest of Europe.  For example the channel 61-69, previously used for TV channels and wireless microphones has been cleared so that it can be used for 4G broadband services.

Anyone who that tuned their systems between the frequencies of 790Mhz- 862Mhz are now running illegally. Around 80% of wireless mic systems once operated in this band and now it legally cannot be used anymore.

Wireless microphones operate in WiFi transmission frequencies and they are immune to the common sources of interference such as mobile phone towers. Now two bands have been freed for use by wireless systems. These are channel 70 and channel 38.

Channel 70 operates between 863-865 MHz and is available to be used by the public without a need for a licence; however it is limited to four wireless systems within the same space as there is a limited bandwidth to work within. As it is a free channel it could potentially become crowded alongside this it is adjacent to the mobile phone frequency range and you may encounter interference.

Channel 38 operates between 864-865MHz and can be used with more than four wireless systems; it is often used at larger events however it does require an annual license to be legally used. As it is a shared band anyone is entitled to buy this licence and is most suited to professionals, gigging bands any musician or DJ that tours in different venues.   The user can get professional systems with many more microphones working together at the same time within the wider bandwidth range.  Without a licence this channel is illegal to use, currently an average yearly cost of buying a license for using Channel 38 is around £75.

View our full range of wireless microphones online.