SI Asia revisits the Microflex Wireless Microphone System with Shure’s Singapore distributor, Electronics & Engineering Pte Ltd. Versatility and scalability combined with precision audio reproduction ensures that the system can be seamlessly installed in diverse room settings across a wide variety of market segments, including corporate, academic, government and financial environments. 

What is the key concept behind Microflex Wireless System?

The key concept behind the Microflex Wireless (MXW) microphone system is to provide a complete wireless audio solution for elite AV conferencing environments. It combines the industry-trusted audio quality of Microflex wired microphones with digital wireless technology that enables high channel counts, intelligent automation and interference avoidance. Modern, low profile designs blend into diverse AV applications, and networked components offer an unprecedented degree of flexibility in system set-up, monitoring, management and control. Microflex Wireless Systems are suitable for a wide array of market segments and applications, from corporations and financial institutions, to academic and government buildings.

How does the Microflex Wireless fit in an integrated system?

Systems integrators and consultants typically serve their clients’ AV needs by designing and/or installing comprehensive systems from the ground up, or by adding new components to existing systems as their customers’ requirements expand. Wireless microphone systems are usually expected to integrate with video conferencing and teleconferencing products, digital signal processors such as automixers and echo-cancellers, and room sound reinforcement systems. With Microflex Wireless this kind of system integration can easily be achieved via the MXW Audio Network Interface, which converts Dante digital networked audio from MXW to per-channel analog audio output for connectivity to any existing or newly installed third party equipment.

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The term ‘wireless’ makes users sometimes nervous-reliability being one of the main considerations. How does Microflex Wirelss resolve this issue to the extent of giving confidence to the users?

The Microflex Wireless system utilizes Automated Frequency Coordination technology which actively scans the available spectrum and coordinates clean, compatible frequencies for every microphone channel. While in use, systems automatically move away from unexpected interference. In case of security concerns due to potential eavesdropping, Microflex Wireless delivers additional peace of mind as audio transmission is protected by AES-256 encryption, a well-recognized industry standard in United States which is also used in top government applications.

How many transceivers are required for a set-up and for how many microphones does it cater for?

The system offers Boundary, Gooseneck, Handheld, and Bodypack transceiver form factors and further includes an Access Point Transceiver, Networked Charging Station, and Audio Network Interface, all available in either 4- or 8- channel configurations. Gigabit Ethernet Connectivity allows to expand the Microflex Wireless System to any scale or number of microphones, which makes it the ideal solution for enterprise-wide implementations, where audio systems span rooms, floors, entire buildings or even campuses. Within a given room or spectrum, the 4- or 8- channel systems can easily be combined to support configurations of up to 40 or more compatible channels (region dependent). Strategic placement of Access Point Transceivers and adjustable power limits further allow to significantly increase the number of channels and microphones that can be used in any environment or setup.

There is a control software – what aspects can you control or monitor through the software and does the software work on any operating system?

The software is a browser-based control interface that works with Internet Explorer, Safari, Firefox, and Chrome. It offers comprehensive remote monitoring and control of all settings and status parameters (e.g. RF spectrum scanning, RF meter, audio meter, rechargeable battery status, microphone mute/unmute status, channel names, and many more) over the web, a corporate network or an AV local area network.

What installation advantages does it bring to the Installer?

Microflex Wireless is extremely easy to install. Its wall/ceiling-mountable wireless Access Point Transceiver connects to the system over single Ethernet cable (PoE compatible), which means that installers have a lot less cabling to handle. It further comes with a paintable cover that allows discreet placement in boardrooms and conference rooms where low visibility is preferred. The access point transceiver is also plenum-rated which allows greater installation flexibility as it meets rigorous fire safety test standards for installation above drop ceiling tiles.

The rack-mountable Audio Network Interface additionally simplifies installation by being the central point for connecting the whole MXW systems to teleconferencing and presentation AV networks, as well as to corporate networks and third party control systems.

What user advantages does it bring to the user?

The system offers many unique benefits for users in elite AV conferencing environments. First, it delivers premium conferencing audio for frequent and critical meetings. Its performance-tested Microflex microphone elements flawlesly capture full range audio for clear, detailed communication. Second, its encrypted wireless and automated frequency coordination technology offer a worry-free wireless audio solution. Third, MXW networked digital audio (Dante and Ethernet connectivity) is the perfect solution for campus/ enterprise-wide implementation because it connects with corporate networks using standard networking protocols, which facilitates remote management and extends the reach and efficiency of team resources. Last but not the least, the system is also compatible with third party control and automation systems (AMX, Crestron), enabling the creation of custom interfaces on touchscreen panels.

This article featured in System Integration Asia Aug-Sep Issue 2015