Frequently Asked Questions about Shure Products and Services

 

Microphones

For: 55SH II
The Super55 uses a different capsule and doesn´t offer an on / off switch.
For: 55SH II
Yes.
For: 55SH II
The capsule used for 55SH is different to the one of the SM58.
For: BETA 57A
There are several differences between the two mics. Here are the most relevant ones: Polar pattern: Beta 57A = supercardioid; SM57 = cardioid Output level: Beta 57A is 4dB hotter than SM57 Handling noise: Beta 57A has less handling noise than the SM57 Grille: Beta 57A has a hardened grille that is very difficult to dent Frequency response: Beta 57A has extended low and high end compared to SM57
For: BETA 57A
The form factor of the mics is different. The different grilles influence the frequency response resulting in a slightly different sound reproduction in the higher frequencies. In addition, the Beta 57A grille allows a little closer placement of the microphone cartridge, which translates to higher output, more gain before feedback, and a more bass response due to proximity effect.
For: BETA 57A
Generally the Beta 57A can be used for vocal applications as well.
For: BETA 58A
The form factor of the mics is different. The different grilles influence the frequency response resulting in a slightly different sound reproduction in the higher frequencies. In addition, the Beta 57A grille allows a little closer placement of the microphone cartridge, which translates to higher output, more gain before feedback, and a more bass response due to the proximity effect.
For: BETA 58A
There are several differences between the two mics. Here are the most relevant ones: Polar pattern: Beta 58A = supercardioid; SM58 = cardioid Output level: Beta 58A is 4dB hotter than SM58 Handling noise: Beta 58A has less handling noise than the SM58 Grille: Beta 58A has a hardened grille that is very difficult to dent Frequency response: Beta 58A has extended low and high end compared to SM58
For: BETA 58A
No, there is no switch version available. You might want to have a look at the SM58SE which is an SM58 version that uses a switch.
For: BETA 58A
The Beta 58 uses a dynamic element; the Beta 87 a condenser. That’s why they sound different. It will be a matter of personal preference, not a technical choice. Auditioning both at a Shure dealer is our best advice.
For: BETA 58A
A Beta 58A head is available for all current Shure wireless microphone systems except for BLX and GLX-D.
The main difference between Beta 87A and Beta 87C is that the Beta87A uses a supercardioid polar pattern and Beta 87C uses a cardioid polar pattern.
The 87C was introduced for performers using in-ear monitors. In brief, a cardioid mic is often preferred by in-ear monitor users as it sounds more "natural" with the in-ear mix. If you use floor monitors, the BETA 87A may be a better choice as it will often provide a bit more gain before feedback than the BETA 87C. However, which model works better for you can only be decided via auditioning the mics.
The Beta 58 uses a dynamic element; the Beta 87 is a condenser. That’s why they sound different. It will be a matter of personal preference, not a technical choice. Auditioning both at a Shure dealer is our best advice.
Probably no phantom power has been applied. This is needed to make condenser microphones work.
For: MV5 , MV51 , MVL

Motiv can be used with any Mac or PC. Additionally, all iDevices that come with a lightning port can be connected to the Motiv products.

For: MV5 , MV51 , MV88 , MVL
Yes. No driver needs to be installed.
For: MV5 , MV51 , MVL

Yes.

For: PGA57
The PGA57 has a new look and switch.
For: PGA57

The PGA58 is designed for speech and vocal applications whereas the PGA57 is specifically designed to meet instrument applications.

For: PGA57
You’ll need a special soundcard that features XLR inputs or an audio interface such as the MVi or X2U. These devices allow you to bypass the computers soundcard and connect a professional microphone to your computer via USB. As they are plug and play devices you don’t need any additional drivers. Note that the MVi can also be used to make a connection to iDevices like iPads.
For: PGA57
The performance of the SM series is better, when comparing frequency response, polar response, handling noise, transient response, etc. They both pass the same drop and environmental tests.
For: PGA58
The performance of the SM series is better, when comparing frequency response, polar response, handling noise, transient response, etc. They both pass the same drop and environmental tests.
For: PGA58
The PGA58 has a new look and switch.
For: PGA58
The PGA58 is designed for speech and vocal applications whereas the PGA57 is specifically designed to meet instrument applications.
For: PGA58
You’ll need a special soundcard that features XLR inputs or an audio interface such as the MVi or X2U. These devices allow you to bypass the computers soundcard and connect a professional microphone to your computer via USB. As they are plug and play devices you don’t need any additional drivers. Note that the MVi can also be used to make a connection to iDevices like iPads.
For: SM57
The SM58 and the SM57 use the same mic element, the Unidyne III. The only difference between these two models is the grille design. The grille design does affect the high frequency response, particularly above 8,000 Hz. The SM57 grille design allows more proximity effect because the mic diaphragm can be placed closer to the sound source. Remove the ball grille from the SM58 and it will be more similar to the SM57 in its low frequency response.
For: SM57
There are several differences between the two mics. Here are the most relevant ones: Polar pattern: Beta 57A = supercardioid; SM57 = cardioid Output level: Beta 57A is 4dB hotter than SM57 Handling noise: Beta 57A has less handling noise than the SM57 Grille: Beta 57A has a hardened grille that is very difficult to dent Frequency response: Beta 57A has extended low and high end compared to SM57
For: SM57
Yes
For: SM57
Yes, SM57 is very common for studio applications.
For: SM57
Yes, it is called RK244G. Please contact our service department for further instructions.
For: SM58

There are several differences between the two mics. Here are the most relevant ones: Polar pattern: Beta 58A = supercardioid; SM58 = cardioid Output level: Beta 58A is 4dB hotter than SM58 Handling noise: Beta 58A has less handling noise than the SM58 Grille: Beta 58A has a hardened grille that is very difficult to dent Frequency response: Beta 58A has extended low and high end compared to SM58

For: SM58
The SM58 and the SM57 use the same mic element, the Unidyne III. The only difference between these two models is the grille design. The grille design does affect the high frequency response, particularly above 8,000 Hz. The SM57 grille design allows more proximity effect because the mic diaphragm can be placed closer to the sound source. Remove the ball grille from the SM58 and it will be more similar to the SM57 in its low frequency response.
For: SM58
Beta58A uses a hardened grille that is pretty difficult to dent.
For: SM58
There is a special model available that offers an on / off switch. The model is called SM58SE.
For: SM58

The SM58 wireless capsule RPW112 is available for and compatible with all Shure wireless series allowing interchangeable capsules.
Please note that BLX and GLX-D wireless series do not feature interchangeable microphone capsules. For these series the SM58 is available as an integrated microphone capsule design.

For: SM58
No, there is no model available that uses a black grille. Nevertheless, there is a black grille for SM58 available that can be placed on the SM58 instead of the silver grille. The name of the grille is RK323G.
For: SM58
You’ll need a special soundcard that features XLR inputs or an audio interface such as the MVi or X2U. These are plug and play devices and don’t need any additional drivers to be installed. Note that the MVi can also be used to make a connection to iDevices like iPads.
For: SM7B
The SM7B is a dynamic microphone. A typical dynamic mic has a lower output level than a typical condenser mic. The SM7B in particular requires the use of a preamp. When selecting a preamp for the SM7B, make sure the preamp has a minimum gain of 60 dB. Many modern mic preamps assume the mic is a condenser mic with a "hot" output level. Thus, it is common to find mic preamps or mic mixers with gains of only 40 to 50 dB.
For: SM7B
Of course you can! The SM7B has become a standard e.g. in recording studios.
For: SM7B
For the SM7B to fasten tightly to a mic stand, there must be 7 mm (3/8") of external (male) thread exposed on the mic stand. If there is a retaining ring on the mic stand thread, remove it and this will typically expose about 10 mm of male thread. Any other surface with an according thread works as well.
For: SM7B
Here are some recommendations: Grace M101 HR-MP2A by Radio Design Labs Cloudlifter Mic Activator Focusrite Scarlett 8i6
For: SM87A
The main difference is the polar pattern that is cardioid with the SM86 and supercardioid with the SM87A. Furthermore, the SM87A has a larger presence peak compared to SM86.
For: SM87A
Vocals.
For: SM87A
Probably no phantom power has been applied. This is needed to make condenser microphones work.
For: Super 55
The Super55 uses a modified version of the Beta58A cartridge.
For: Super 55
The Super55 uses a different capsule and doesn´t offer an on / off switch.
For: Super 55
No, the 55SH comes with a switch.
For: Super 55
It very much depends on the positioning of loudspeakers. SM58 uses a cardioid polar pattern and the Super55 uses a supercardioid polar pattern.
For: VP83 , VP83F
Closer is always better, because of physics and the inverse square law. A mic mounted on a camera is always a compromise. Ideally, there would be a lapel mic on the talker, or they would be less than 30 cm away regardless of the mic being used. Use your ears and monitor the audio source using headphones and set the gain appropriately based on the meters provided.
For: VP83 , VP83F
The VP83F uses on-board flash recording options. The benefit is that audio can be recorded directly in the microphone unit and doesn´t need to go through noisy preamps, e.g. DSLR cameras. Furthermore, it offers a display that provides an overview of the most relevant meters (audio and battery).
For: VP83 , VP83F
This always depends on the quality and format of the recorded audio as well as the memory space on the SD card.

Earphones

For: SE215 , SE315 , SE425 , SE535 , SE846 , KSE1500
Shure Sound Isolating Earphones block up to 37 dB of background noise depending on the used sleeves.
For: SE215 , SE315 , SE425 , SE535 , SE846 , KSE1500
Custom molds are not directly offered by Shure but there are partners in each country that offer custom molds.
For: SE215 , SE315 , SE425 , SE535 , SE846
The following models come with detachable cables: SE215, SE315, SE425, SE535 and SE846. For these models cables are sold separately and therefore can be replaced.
For: SE215 , SE315 , SE425 , SE535 , SE846
Yes. Please contact our service department.
For: SE215 , SE315 , SE425 , SE535 , SE846

SE112: Uses one dynamic driver and does not feature detachable cable

SE215: Uses one dynamic driver and comes with detachable cable and ergonomic earphones housing SE315: Uses one balanced armature driver and comes with detachable cable and ergonomic earphones housing

SE425: Uses two balanced armature drivers and comes with detachable cable and ergonomic earphones housing

SE535: Uses three balanced armature drivers and comes with detachable cable and ergonomic earphones housing

SE846: Uses four balanced armature drivers including subwoofer performance, detachable cable, ergonomic earphones housing and detachable nozzle

For: SE215 , SE315 , SE425 , SE535 , SE846
Just pull the earphones from the cable. Even if there seems to be some resistance, earphones don´t break.
For: SE215 , SE315 , SE425 , SE535 , SE846

The SE215, SE315, SE425, SE535 and SE846 earphones use a cable which is resistant against sweat. These earphones have been designed to resist conditions on stage, which includes a lot of sweat.

For: SE215 , SE315 , SE425 , SE535 , SE846 , KSE1500
Shure earphones are based on the sound isolating principle.
For: SE215 , SE315 , SE425 , SE535 , SE846 , KSE1500
Shure earphones furnish a cleaning tool. Use the wire loop of this tool to remove wax/debris build-up if you recognize any change in the overall output level. Make sure that you hold the earphone with the nozzle pointed downward while cleaning as it is desired to have the wax fall out of the nozzle, not accumulate in the center of the nozzle. When inserting the wire loop into the nozzle, the wire loop tip should rest against the edge of the damper; the side of the loop should rest against the side wall of the nozzle. Keep the wire loop tip against the edge of the damper/filter. Scrape the loop around the side wall while pulling it outwards to remove the wax. Do not press the loop deeper into the nozzle as this might puncture the damper/filter. Such damage will allow wax/debris to get into the transducer section of the earphone. Eventually, the audio signal will diminish or stop completely. At this point, the earphones must be sent to Shure Service/Repair.
For: SE215 , SE315 , SE425 , SE535 , SE846 , KSE1500
Try to figure out if the defect comes from one of the earbuds or a connector. As soon as you may have diagnosed the point of failure, get in touch with your local Shure service center.
For: SE215 , SE315 , SE425 , SE535 , SE846 , KSE1500
Try to clean the earphones using the furnished cleaning tool. If the sound does not improve, please get in touch with your local Shure service center.
For: SE215 , SE315 , SE425 , SE535 , SE846
SE112: One SE215: One SE315: One SE425: Two SE535: Three SE846: Four

Headphones

Generally you need to differentiate in terms of ear cup design: - Closed back-headphones: SRH240A, SRH440, SRH550DJ, SRH750DJ, SRH840, SRH940, SRH1540 Open-back headphones: SRH1440, SRH1840 - Models with detachable cable: SRH440, SRH750DJ, SRH840, SRH940, SRH1440, SRH1540, SRH1840 Other than that, the models differ in terms of sound signature and built quality.
Models with detachable cable: SRH440 SRH840 SRH940 SRH1440 SRH1540 SRH1840
Yes, there are generally different cable types: - HPACA1: This is the furnished cable of the SRH440, SRH750DJ, SRH840 and SRH940 - HPASCA1: This is an alternative straight cable for the SRH440, SRH750DJ, SRH840 and SRH940 - HPASCA2: Replacement cable of the SRH1440 and SRH1840 - HPASCA3: Replacement cable of the SRH1540

Wireless Microphone Lines

The 2.4 GHz range that is used with GLX-D systems is usable globally without any need for registration. There is no UHF TV band used for BLX that can be used all over Europe and in many countries you need to register the systems.
No.

Two words; spectral efficiency. Demand for wireless microphones increases year on year, while at the same time, the amount of clear spectrum available is shrinking. More mics in less space means it's going to get crowded pretty quickly, and the amount of radio 'space' each channel takes up needs to be reduced to keep up with demand. Wireless spectrum, after all, is a finite resource; there is only so much to go around. If the demand for wireless products across the board continues to increase at the current pace, all users will need to be more spectrally efficient (including consumer goods).

It's a bit like lanes on a motorway. Previously we had, say 8 lanes, and only 3 big-ass trucks needed to run simultaneously; not much traffic and plenty of space. Now we have 4 lanes and we're trying to run 20 trucks side by side; there's not a lot of space. Using efficient digital systems, it'd be like running 20 super-narrow trucks in the same 4 lanes; a solution that will actually work.

Radio microphones are used at a large number of events where sensitive information is shared. Without encryption, it's possible to receive the signal from a radio microphone on a separate receiver tuned to the same frequency and with a similar modulation scheme (digital or analogue as appropriate).

As unlikely as it many may be that anyone would spy and try to steal sensitive information, it unfortunately does happen in the interests of gaining a competitive advantage.

Analogue radio microphones cannot be encrypted. Digital data can be encrypted using the AES-256 standard so that the transmitter sends the encrypted data rather than the unencrypted source data. Now, if a digital receiver is tuned to the same frequency, but doesn't know the encryption key, no audio will be recovered; your sensitive information remains safe.

A digital radio microphone system refers specifically to the RF modulation scheme. In the receiver this is converted into an analogue audio signal for connection to an analogue desk or a guitar amplifier.

There are an increasing number of applications where keeping the audio in the digital domain has advantages. Shure have teamed with Audinate to use the Dante Digital Audio Network Protocol. Only our ULX-D dual and quad receiver systems have this capability. The audio from these receivers can be streamed via a network to other Dante receivers. (While confusing at first, the ULX-D wireless receiver becomes a Dante transmitter…). Remember that there are specific network requirements in order to do this; primarily a low-latency gigabit network with Quality of Service features engaged. Learn more at the following link: https://www.audinate.com/resources/networks-switches

Yes. As well as being green and good for the environment, the lithium ion rechargeable cells will save you money and simplify your inventory – cutting out last-minute trips to purchase AA batteries just before your gig (yep, we've all been there. Why are batteries SOOO expensive?!).

Here's a cost comparison of one transmitter that uses fresh batteries once a day, and is used 4 times per week. Prices of AA batteries were from the website.

It's clear that although the upfront cost for the rechargeable cell is greater, the cost savings kick in around the 1 year mark.

Ah, the age-old analogue vs digital question that is always laced with subjectivity. For wireless mics though, it's more objective.

On the whole, digital radio microphones will have more low end, top end and arguably sound more clear than analogue. This is due to a couple of reasons. Analogue systems are bound by the constraints of FM modulation which extends to highs around 15,000 Hz. Audio above this frequency is considered hard to hear at best, but it is noticeably missed when not present. This is especially true on bodypacks used for electric guitar where there will be more high-frequency content. The frequency response of digital systems such as ULX-D and QLX-D is 20Hz-20kHz, which results in a very full sound.

The other thing is, digital systems are not subject to noise picked up while being transmitted. In a digital transmitter, the first process applied to the incoming audio is the Analogue to Digital conversion. Now that the audio is represented in 0's and 1's, the transmitter will use what is typically a proprietary form of digital modulation to send this data. As the data being transmitted is digital, the receiver can perfectly recover the digital ones and zeros, thus recreating a perfect reconstruction of the original analogue sound – as well as avoiding picking up noise. This process also allows the frequency response to be much wider than analogue as we are no longer bound by the limitations of FM modulation.

Digital wireless doesn't mean that it's WiFi. It refers only to the type of data being transmitted by radio.

As an example, Shure's QLX-D and ULX-D systems both use UHF spectrum in the 470-790 MHz band, whereas the GLX-D system uses 2.4 GHz (2,400 MHz) WiFi. Don't worry, though, you're not going to start picking up other peoples' facetime calls on your receiver; while coexisting with WiFi, intelligent 2.4GHz systems consider this traffic as interference and avoid it automatically.

Interference is always a concern when multiple services are sharing spectrum. Just like in our motorway example earlier, if there's more than on car on a road then a collision is possible. Our GLX-D system uses the same spectrum as WiFi (2.4 GHz), and so there is a chance of interference. To counteract this we need specialist technology that continually scans the 2.4GHz landscape to hunt out and avoid interference, leaving you with perfectly clean, interference-free audio.

For 2.4GHz based digital systems, please see above.

For UHF based digital wireless systems, you need to coordinate your system to avoid external sources or interference in the same way you would an analogue system. The factor that swings in your favour, though, is the spectral efficiency of the system; so in the instance of getting interference, you are more likely to be able to avoid it. It's because the 'footprint' of digital wireless is way smaller than analogue, giving it more space in which to operate.

Some, more advanced digital systems (such as Shure ULX-D) have frequency diversity built-in. This permits two bodypacks to be used on two channels as a pair, to mic up one presenter for example. The audio from both packs is assessed by the receiver, and at any one moment, the best quality audio is routed to the receiver's XLR and Dante outputs, so if pack one goes bad, then the good pack's audio remains on. Admittedly, as soon as there is a break in the event, you need to replace the bad frequency with a clean frequency for pack one, but as far as the audience is concerned, you had no interference.

The amount of systems you can run at any given time depends on the system you're using and the spectrum it operates in. To give you an example, a Shure GLX-D system allows you to use up to 8 systems together, but this requires the 2.4 GHz spectrum to be super clean. In normal circumstances, I would recommend using up to 4 systems together. If you need to regularly use more at once, then I'd (carefully) recommend using BLX or taking the jump to QLX-D.

Higher-end UHF based systems (such as QLX-D and ULX-D) can use up to 67 channels per frequency band. ULX-D also offers a High Density mode where up to 500 channels can be made to work together.

GLX-D has fixed antennas and so does not need Antenna Distribution. That said, please still pay attention to antenna placement;

  • Try to ensure line of sight
  • Minimise transmission distance

QLX-D and ULX-D both use UHF spectrum and providing that your distros cover the RF range that your kit operates on, you'll be fine.

The digital UHF systems have a similar range as other analogue UHF wireless microphone systems. There's no difference in the carrier frequency; the only difference is it's carrying digital information rather than analogue.

Systems operating in the 2.4 GHz band use a higher frequency to transmit audio and so will have a lower, or smaller operating range. Physics is physics.

The 2.4 GHz band is a license free part of spectrum and is available globally. It's limitations are the number of wireless microphones it can host; about 8 maximum. It's also relatively susceptible to interference as there are many other devices that use this band (mainly phones, tablets and laptops using WiFi). For this reason, we must build in features to avoid being caught out by interference (Interference Detection and Avoidance) as described in point #4.

Wireless systems operating in the UHF bands (QLX-D and ULX-D) require licencing just like any analogue radio microphone would; either a channel 38 license or a site-specific license.

It depends on the country you are located and the chosen frequency band. Please get in touch with our technical support team.
Yes.
Operating range always depends on the environment (closed rooms usually result in higher operating ranges due to many reflections around). Therefore no standard value can be given.
FP Wireless and SLX units can be mixed and are intercompatible if same the frequency bands are used.
There are two cables that ship with every FP wireless System: TA3F-to-XLR and TA3F-to-3.5 mm
For: FP Wireless , FP3
You can use them as long as they are battery powered. The FP3 doesn´t provide phantom power and therefore only dynamic microphones can be used.
No.

The GLX-D Advanced receiver is rack-mountable and features detachable antennas. This allows users to use directional antennas, helping to increase system stability in environments with other WiFi sources.

The GLX-D Advanced Frequency Manager creates a shared group of frequencies for all receivers to use and automatically assigns frequencies to each receiver. If interference occurs, the frequency manager assigns new frequencies without audible dropouts.

No. When running two channels we recommend using the UA221-RSMA antenna splitter to split the incoming antenna signal to the two receivers

No. There is only one series of transmitters. These can be used with GLX-D receivers (GLXD4 and GLXD6) as well as with GLX-D Advanced receivers (GLXD4R).

In an environment with no other WiFi devices you can run up to 11 channels. Under typical conditions (one WiFi channel is active) you can run up to 9 channels. The more WiFi channels active in an environment, the lower the max. amount of channels. Please be sure to use frequency manager.

Group A is optimized for low latency (4 ms), ideal for a channel count of 6 systems, maximum 9.

Group B has a higher stability and a higher latency (7,3 ms), ideal if you experience interference or need to run 9 to 11 systems.

If you are not using the Frequency Manager, then the GLXD4R receiver operates similar to a GLXD4 receiver. In that case, follow the guidelines and best-practices for GLX-D.

If you are using the Frequency Manager, we recommend only one GLX-D standard system.