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Wireless with rear-mounted antennas in a rack:

Discussion in 'Live Sound [BG]' started by O.j. Malm, Jul 5, 2014.

  1. O.j. Malm

    O.j. Malm

    Jul 1, 2014
    I'm considering getting a wireless, and I'm concerned whether the antennas will work properly when the unit is mounted inside a deep rack. They are going to be pretty deep inside.
  2. Hi.

    Very little experience about wireless systems for instruments/IEM and none on the digital ones, but all that I've used for handhelds have had the antennas on the outside of the rack.

    Depending on the frequency and the quality of the cable, You'll lose a few dB on every connector/connection, but why not mount the antennas on the front vent panel you are going to install anyway.

  3. O.j. Malm

    O.j. Malm

    Jul 1, 2014
    What do you mean by that?
  4. Hi.

    If the unit is a pro one, the antennas are removable.

    N and BNC connectors were the "standards" in the UHF and VHF days.
    Nowadays, I don't have a clue what is "standard", but the antennas should be removable with a some kind of industrial connector anyway.
    Most companies have extension cords and sockets as an option for the antennas so no need for the extra DIY dB loss.

    You buy a set with panel mounts, and mount them on the ends of the vent/fan panel between the M6 and the wireless.


    You mount the antenna panel onto the back rails of the rack if the looks are important.

  5. ArtechnikA

    ArtechnikA I endorsed a check once... Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 24, 2013
  6. lasalle69

    lasalle69 "Buy The Ticket, Take The Ride"-H.S.T.

    Nov 21, 2007
    Somerset, MA
    1404560816241. Had the same issue running multiple A/T mics in my H.S. theatre. Audio Technica sells rear panel mount ext. Kits. Cheaper way to go is just buy the bnc connectors, the correct wire. and build the extensions then drill a blank rack plate, mount on back of rack and voila-no interference or weak signal. You can find kits online for @ $30.
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2014
  7. My Senn G300 is rear mounted and though it came with cables etc to rack mount the antenna I never bothered and I don't believe it ever mattered.
  8. monkeyland

    monkeyland Supporting Member

    Jul 1, 2008
    Ft Myers, Florida
    Endorsing artist: Curt Mangan Strings, JH Audio
    I would say that like most things, it depends. I think that in the case of a typical bass players rack it should not matter. It can be very dependent on the environment and what other kinds of interference or obstacles are present near by.

    This rack, installed in a church sanctuary, contains 4 channels of Shure ULX wireless. Previously it was fitted with an analog mixer and the antenna for the wireless was inside of the rack. So quite literally the wireless signal had to fight its way through a metal box on it's way to the receivers. It worked fine that way for years even though it is definitely not a recommended configuration. When the mixer was changed and the associated computer gear was added the church started to experience dropouts on all channels. In this case extension cables were added to get the antenna out of the box and there have been no problems since.

  9. Geri O

    Geri O Supporting Member

    Sep 6, 2013
    Florence, MS
    Just give it a try as it is now. If you have problems, follow the advice listed above on an external antenna panel. Distance from your rack will be the biggest factor. And only you can determine that. Me, personally, I would do the rack panel, if my receiver and transmitter stayed in my rack, but they don't, so this isn't a concern for me (yet).

    And if the connectors are properly installed on the cable, there's next to no loss at all. I know that loss figure is out there, but years ago, we measured the RF signal through several connections and the loss was nearly nothing. There's many other factors to be concerned about with RF transmission of any kind, mostly crowded airwaves and obstructions, over the connector factor (again, as long as the connections are properly built). Having said all of that, it is a good rule to start with.

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