You wanna go pro, so you gotta have pro gear, right? If you’re paying any attention to what the pro players are using, you’re absolutely going to see them using wireless. Wireless what? Wireless everything of course! Microphones, guitars, pedalboards, the list goes on. So you would probably think that your first stop on the way to having a pro rig would be to pick up a wireless unit right? Well I made this quick list so you can gauge whether and not it’s right for you. Wireless is a very useful thing, but if bought and used improperly you may be asking for trouble. Keeping that in mind, remember this list isn’t a “pro and con” of wireless but a reference before you purchase.

  1. What are you using it for and what is your average distance from the audio input?

    1. This is the first and foremost question you need to ask yourself before you buy wireless. If you are a working at a House of Worship then wireless is always a good idea. It allows you to interact with your audience and move freely through the space. Most Worship centers are fairly large, making a wireless solution the cheapest and easiest way to go. If you’re in a touring band, you need to accurately gauge your gigs. If you mainly play local bar gigs, wireless might not be the best bet. If you play larger venues and have a good sound guy who can keep an eye on it, wireless can work out very nicely for you.

  2. How many units do you need?

    1. Wireless airspace isn’t limitless and it’s easy for wireless units to “crosstalk” between each other if their frequencies aren't set correctly. If you only have one or two units, it’s pretty easy to set and forget them. Once you have more than 4 units however, you need to plan and make sure that your units will gel together. Failing to account for this can potentially ruin your whole set-up before it’s even on!

  3. Are you buying wireless Instrument and Microphone packs?

    1. While the technology is the same, the function is a bit different. Wireless microphones need to have their receivers live at the mixing board, so it can be tough to use them without a soundman to fix any problems. Wireless guitar units usually plug right into your amp, meaning easy set up for a single guitar player, but problems can arise if you need to fix problems on stage.

  4. How much money do you have to invest?

    1. I’ll be blunt: Wireless units cost money. For lightweight units for small gigs and churches, expect to pay around the $300-$500 range. Most “Pro” units are going to start around the $700 range, but give you far more in the way of frequency options and range. A true tour ready, flawless professional unit is going to start somewhere in the $2000 range, so if you’re lucky enough to be playing shows that require that level of performance, be prepared to pony up. Your wallet will hate you, but your sound (and audience) will love you.