Updated: Jan 13, 2020
By now, most people have heard about the changes to the legal frequency band for wireless systems in the US. By now most people should have made arrangements to prepare for these changes. In case you don't know, wireless systems and devices that operate in the UHF band between 608-698 MHz, will no longer be a legal range in the United States. The legal range is now 470-608 MHz. Why do I say "now" and not by the year 2020, which is what it's supposed to be? Well, the law permits the winner of the auction, T-Mobile to begin testing and deploying systems in their newly purchased frequency band. T-mobile has begun tests in some rural areas in the mid-west, and has plans to begin testing in metro areas like NYC, in early 2018.
If you haven't begun to update your wireless microphones and in-ear monitors to the new frequency range, you will soon be experiencing RF interference, without any recourse or solution. Many manufacturers are providing customers with rebates to purchase "legal" units, when trading in the older "non-legal" units. Additionally, some are developing systems that operate in other legal (probably crowded) bands, such as VHF, 900MHz, and 2.4GHz.
Another issue of concern related to these changes is, TV stations that are currently operating in the 600MHz band are also required to move to the legal range. This means that the chances of interference from TV stations will increase. And since they have the legal right and the transmitting power to overwhelm a small organization, it goes without saying, that you will have to find a clear frequency/channel to operate on.
This writing is a bit simplified, but the issue may be much more complicated. Without fully understanding what's involved, trying to replace your wireless systems can be an expensive mistake. Mickella Solutions is staying informed about these changes so that we can assist our clients with their wireless needs. If you need further assistance, please don't hesitate to contact us. We are here to help!
And, unlike Drake's mixtape, it's not too late, if you're now reading this ;-).