From all of us at Poll Sound, Welcome to 2018! As we all wish for a successful 2018, we want to be a part of that success by giving you the tools and information you need to exchange your wireless microphones to a legal frequency range and avoid any issues or potential fines due to operating in the 600 MHz band.
As many of you are aware, in April of 2017, the FCC auctioned off the 600 MHz band with T-Mobile being the largest winner. The understanding was the same for this auction as it was in March 2008, with the 700 MHz auction, that TV stations would have 36 months (approx.) to vacate to a different frequency spectrum. However, T-Mobile has no such intentions on this one. Unfortunately, time is not on our side.
When the auction was completed T-Mobile immediately announced plans to start testing its share of the radio spectrum by year’s end (2017). T-Mobile is making good on that promise, currently commencing services in more than 300 counties across the U.S. which includes counties in Utah. Once any auction winner begins testing in the 600 MHz spectrum, it becomes illegal to operate any wireless microphones, in-ear monitoring, and intercom systems in that cellular block. The fine for doing so can be more than $10,000 per day (per frequency!).
With that said, there is not an over-all need for panic! But there is a need to look sooner than later to replace your 600 MHz wireless equipment. The good news is almost all major wireless manufacturers are giving trade-in rebates on 600 MHz wireless systems. This can certainly help offset costs to switch to a legal frequency spectrum. Here are the links to the major manufacturers explaining their trade-in programs:
Sennheiser – Good for purchases made from June 14, 2017 through June 30, 2018:
Shure – Good for purchases made from April 2017 through April 30 2018:
Note: Trade-In cost is toward the system you are buying, not against what system you are trading in.
Audio-Technica - Program runs from August 15, 2017 through March 31, 2019 -
AKG – Runs through April 30, 2018:
Galaxy Audio - Purchase of a qualifying Wireless System needs to be between 08/01/17 and 12/31/18:
There are certainly other trade-in programs for other manufacturers, but this will get you started. Also, don’t forget, this applies not only to wireless microphones but to in-ear monitors, IFB, and wireless intercom systems as well.
If you have any questions regarding these or other trade-in programs please feel free to call and speak with any of our professional staff to discuss your concerns or needs. Here’s to a successful wireless 2018!
Article written by Rick Low, Poll Sound Sales Manager