(l-r) Al Grossniklaus and Stacey Cutshaw (NFL game day frequency coordinators), Robert Dickerson, owner of Honolulu-based Lectrosonics dealer Jim Walters Company, and Senator Mike Michael, CAS.Honolulu, HI (March 22, 2011)–Lectrosonics wireless systems were used to deliver the referee’s calls at this year’s NFL Pro Bowl in Hawaii.
“For the first time, the NFL opted to use Aloha Stadium’s wireless mic system,” explained Aloha Stadium and Pro Bowl veteran Senator Mike Michaels, CAS. The L.A.-based audio mixer and engineer was responsible for the referee’s wireless mic system. Michaels and Honolulu-based partner Robert Dickerson had responsibility not only for the wireless microphone worn by the referee, they also had to ensure the delivery of that signal throughout the stadium, including the radio and television broadcasters, the NFL statisticians, while also being responsible for the stadium’s sound reinforcement system.
“This decision resulted in our using three Lectrosonics REFUM referee transmitter systems in tandem with a fully stocked Venue receiver mainframe holding six VRS receiver modules and two Lectrosonics ALP500 shark fin antennas to aid reception,” Michaels continued. “The Lectrosonics REFUM system incorporates the REFUM transmitter and the RefSwitch muting device that can silence the transmitter’s audio without any clicks or pops. While we had two backup units available and ready on the field, we only used the one system that was originally outfitted on the referee because we encountered no issues throughout the entire game.”
Now known as the Lectrosonics Mute Switch, the RefSwitch muting device was placed on the referee’s preferred side to facilitate control over his audio output. When issuing calls, the referee signals the official score keeper/statistician, who is located in the press box over the 50-yard line. In the process, he also faces the TV cameras. The referee’s ability to mute/unmute the audio feed is critical. A Countryman EMW Omni Classic lavalier microphone was used with the REFUM transmitter system. The Venue receiver system was housed in the stadium’s audio control booth.