Corporate AV conferencing often happens in spaces that look beautiful but sound terrible. Companies spend huge budgets on lighting, seating, and projection, but for people on the other end of a videoconference, none of that matters if it sounds like the first trans-Atlantic telephone call.
Often, the solution has been to place microphones on the meeting table, preferably within arm’s reach of every participant. But table microphones—even wireless ones—can detract from the look of the room and clutter the table. Overhead microphones sometimes work successfully with careful attention to room acoustics but were reserved for expensive custom installations. Early array microphones showed some promise, but they hovered awkwardly over the table and required lots of configuration and setup time.
With the MXA910 Ceiling Array Microphone, Shure figured out how to make a great-sounding AV conferencing microphone invisible.
Meet the MXA910 Ceiling Array Microphone
The MXA910 is part of the new Microflex® Advance™ system. It goes on the ceiling, out of the way and pretty much out of sight. Unlike conventional microphones, its pickup is completely adjustable. You can aim it where you want it without physically changing the microphone’s orientation. You don’t need to touch it at all, in fact.
The MXA910 connects to your audio conferencing processor, videoconferencing codec, or PC-based videoconferencing software. It gives you the great performance you need without interfering with the visual aesthetic of the room.
The secret is the combination of state-of-the-art array microphone technology with the Shure IntelliMix® DSP Suite. IntelliMix is a robust set of signal processing tools—Steerable Coverage™, Automatic Mixing, Echo Reduction, and Equalization—that offer an unprecedented level of control.
What’s an Array Microphone?
An array microphone consists of multiple mic elements arranged in a specific pattern and combined together electronically. The type, number, and layout of the mic elements plays a critical role in achieving the desired behavior from the array. And it turns out that the DSP needs to do quite a bit more than just sum all of the microphone signals together and manipulate the phase, which is what most array microphones do.
With the right microphones in the right arrangement and the right signal processing, sound quality improves dramatically. For starters, you can achieve a much narrower polar pattern than is possible with a conventional microphone (even a shotgun type). This allows the mic to pick up the sound of a participant seated farther away without room noise overwhelming the participant’s voice. Voices in all areas of the conference space sound clear, natural, and intelligible.
The width and placement of the so-called “pickup lobe” are also adjustable so you can easily match the microphone’s coverage to the layout and seating arrangement of the room. Need a narrow pickup lobe focused on the CEO’s seat? No problem. Want a wide lobe to cover multiple talkers? Can do.
Browser-based Audio Control & Automatic Mixing
What really makes the MXA910 special is that it is so easy to operate.
Instead of specifying angles and distances from the mic to the person talking, in the browser-based software, you adjust a pickup lobe by dragging it on a screen. No trigonometry required. We call this Steerable Coverage™. You can point the lobe at a specific location and accurately see the area that will be covered. There’s also an Auto-Configuration feature during setup that will aim the lobe at a person talking.
The MXA910 can provide up to eight pickup lobes at a time, and they can each have different widths and be pointed in different directions. So, one MXA910 mounted above a meeting table can have pickup lobes pointed at every seating position, or you can use one lobe to cover multiple seats—whatever works for your space.
With eight pickup lobes, you get eight audio outputs that you can connect to an audio processor. Plus, there’s a ninth output channel for the built-in IntelliMix automatic mixer. When someone speaks, it selects the best pickup lobe for them. The IntelliMix output eliminates the need for a mixer, and is ideal for connecting to videoconferencing hardware that only has one audio input.
IntelliMix also has a built-in echo reduction feature that reduces acoustic echo by preventing far end participants from activating local microphone channels. It’s very effective as a front end to codecs with only a single channel acoustic echo canceler. There’s a parametric equalizer for each audio channel, too, which is handy for filtering out room noise or compensating for acoustic anomalies.
Two More Benefits: Discreet Design & Dante™
The MXA910 connects to other AV hardware using the Dante digital audio networking protocol, so there’s no tangle of cables accompanying all the technology in this array mic. Dante delivers pristine digital audio and standard Power over Ethernet over one Ethernet cable. The Dante protocol lets audio co-exist with other traffic on the network without slowing it down, so you can use your existing network to connect components in the same room or to distribute audio throughout your facility. (If you need to connect to a device that does not use Dante, we have Dante-to-analog audio interfaces, too.)
Fitting flush into a standard ceiling tile grid, the MXA910 is completely discreet and unassuming. It comes in two sizes (2 feet by 2 feet, and 60 cm by 60 cm), and it’s even paintable to match the room décor.
Ceilings are sometimes not ideal spaces, though. First, it can get really dusty up there, so the MXA910 has an IP5X dust-resistant rating per IEC 60529. Sometimes suspended ceiling grids vibrate, so the MXA910 has internal mechanical isolation. If the space above the ceiling tiles is used for air distribution, the included FyreWrap® fire protective wrap system satisfies UL 2043 requirements and qualifies the MXA910 as Suitable for Air Handling Spaces. And in rooms that don’t have a drop ceiling, you can attach the MXA910 to a standard VESA mount (like a projector) or hang it with wires.
If you want great AV conferencing audio that’s invisible and easy to configure, then the MXA910 is for you.
- QuickSmartDSP features best-in-class processing, EV’s signature single-knob user interface, and intuitive menu navigation via LCD.
- Cardioid Control Technology allows output to be steered towards the audience with up to 35 dB reduction on stage when multiple subs are deployed.
- High-efficiency 1300 W Class D power amplifier delivers up to 134 dB peak SPL on the EKX-18SP utilizing high-sensitivity transducers designed and engineered by EV.
- Intelligent thermal management with a variable-speed fan controlled by multiple onboard sensors, ensuring superior performance and reliability in demanding environmental conditions.
- Two XLR outputs for easy system expansion to additional loudspeakers or subwoofers. Large slot ports for low distortion and excellent bass extension. Metal grille reinforcement bar (two on the 18SP). M20
Source: JBL Professional – YouTube
The Acclaimed Concert Club Series Advances to Mark V
Once again, with professional features, excellent sonic performance and great value, Club Series loudspeakers deliver premium quality night after night.
Club V Series Brochure [English] PDF [714KB]
Developed and manufactured in the United States, the Concert Club series speakers have earned acclaim around the world. The new Mark V series represents a complete redesign of the previous Concert Club IV lineup, introducing three front-of-house models, three subwoofers, and three monitor models. While maintaining the superb portability and ease of placement that characterized previous generations, as well as the same design concept and stunning sound, the Mark V series represents a new level of performance overall. Club V loudspeakers with the C prefix are finished with a heavy-duty elastomer spray coating. Designed as an installation alternative to the carpeted S versions, they are an excellent match for any décor. The finish is very tough, and can be repainted to match any interior. The steel grilles are foam-lined with acoustically transparent material to provide a more unobtrusive appearance.
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- The new ETX Powered Loudspeakers family builds upon the industry-leading innovation and 85-year heritage of Electro-Voice audio engineering to offer the most advanced professional portable powered loudspeakers available today.
- A versatile high-end choice for live entertainment venues, rental companies, pro musicians and DJs, and installed sound, the ETX Powered Loudspeakers family features three two-way models (10-inch, 12-inch and 15-inch, all with a precision HF titanium compression driver), a three-way model (15-inch with a 6.5-inch MF driver and a precision HF titanium compression driver) and two subs (15-inch and 18-inch drivers).
- Positioned above the ZLX and Live X families respectively, ETX Powered Loudspeakers complete a trio of recent EV portable loudspeaker offerings—each of which was designed to bring best-in-class performance to its price point.
- Inside each low-profile, tour-grade wood enclosure are a host of unique new features that set ETX Powered Loudspeakers apart, combining intelligent technology and innovative industrial design for spectacular results across all applications. EV-engineered high-efficiency transducers and high-powered Class-D amplifiers, Signal Synchronized Transducers (SST) waveguide design and smart FIR-Drive DSP all work together to provide peerless EV sound quality and precise coverage at the highest SPLs.
15-inch LF SMX woofer1.25-inch HF titanium compression driver2000 W Class-D power amplifier with integrated FIR-Drive DSP135 dB peak SPL
15-inch LF SMX woofer6.5-inch MF driver1.25-inch HF titanium compression driver2000 W Class-D power amplifier with integrated FIR-Drive DSP136 dB peak SPL
Everything You Need to Be HeardGet legendary sound quality with the EON208P all-in-one portable PA system, complete with an 8-channel mixer and Bluetooth audio. With a convenient suitcase-style design, the EON208P makes it easy to get great sound for performances, meetings and events. The 8-channel detachable mixer provides professional connections for mics, instruments and line-level sources, while the 8” two-way stereo speakers deliver best-in-class audience coverage. Bluetooth connectivity also allows you to stream audio from your mobile device. With 300 watts, you’ll have more than enough volume to be heard. Plus, the compact and lightweight form factor means you can carry the entire system with one hand.PERFORMANCELegendary JBL audio quality and versatile operation make it the most sophisticated, easy-to-use
portable PA.BLUETOOTHThe detachable 8-channel mixer features professional I/O, thoughtfully designed controls and Bluetooth audio for
One of the most common decisions facing musicians is the choice between a wired andwireless microphone. Owning a mic at all is a big step for a musician, and having to choose between a wired and wireless solution can be daunting.
While the simplicity of wired can be an advantage, a wireless microphone can benefit active performers. At the end of the day, though, personal preference should determine your choice.
Here are some factors to consider if you’re on the fence and not sure what you might prefer.
Context Is Key, Always
Do you like to move around a lot onstage?
Do you play an instrument that keeps you stationary, like drums or keys?
Are you comfortable with having multiple technology components to your microphone?
Are you lacking in grace, like me, and worried about tripping over mic cables?
These performance contexts are as important to consider as polar pattern, cost, dynamic vs. condenser, and other factors. The more you think about the physical part of stage performance, the closer you will get to choosing the solution that suits you.
The Microphone Cable: A Possible Burden
Do you just want eliminate the microphone cable? I ask because for some people, a Yes!response is reason enough to go wireless.
A wireless mic provides more freedom onstage as well as the ability to interact uniquely with the performance environment. If you’re an energetic performer who likes to move around the stage, the feeling of being unbound from a microphone cable can be freeing and exhilarating. On top of that, going wireless eliminates the fear of damaging or disconnecting a cable during a performance. (As someone who has been to his fair share of punk shows, I’ve seen many XLR cables bite the dust.)
If you’re worried about wireless systems being too complex, it’s important to note that Shure systems are proven to have exceptional audio quality, ease of use, and reliability. There is no need to be concerned about losing the legendary sound that people are used to hearing with wired mics. Also, many of our systems are designed for musicians who run their own sound, so you don’t have to be a sound engineer to use them with confidence. For more information about choosing a specific wireless system, check out this helpful Shure webinar on the subject.
The Microphone Cable: A Possible Lifesaver
Many performers and sound engineers prefer wired microphones because of the ease of use and simplicity a wired connection provides. Wired mic users never have to deal with frequency selection or battery life. If there’s a mic problem during a performance, troubleshooting is straightforward because there are fewer things that can go wrong. It can be addressed immediately with a new XLR cable or a review of the signal path.
For anyone who doesn’t want to carry around or worry about troubleshooting multiple pieces of microphone technology, regardless of how user-friendly they are, a wired mic can be the way to go. In most cases, all you need is the microphone because the venue will have an XLR cable ready for you. This simplicity is a big upside to going with a wired solution. Plus, if you’re stationary when you perform, then the freedom of movement that wireless provides isn’t a factor for you.
Personal Preference Shouldn’t Be Overlooked
Personal preference can be the deciding factor in choosing a solution. When it comes to investing into your craft, there are always going to be frustrating moments of indecision. If you have performed in front of audiences already, you’ll have a better sense of what you prefer and why. Sometimes that’s all you need to know in order to make the right mic choice for yourself.
Despite the fact that I occasionally stumble over cables, I chose a wired BETA 58A® because I like the way my voice sounds through it, and it fits my needs as a commuting musician with limited backpack space. Also, since I play an instrument while singing, I like having the microphone stationary on a stand all the time. I don’t need to move around the stage. My wired mic works for me both practically and aesthetically, which is what I hope for you whichever way you go.