New York (November 6, 2008)--While November 4 proved to be a historic day as the U.S. voted Barack Obama to be its new president, another vote caused considerably less celebration within the pro audio world. The FCC adopted rules to allow white space devices to operate in the spectrum ranges of unused TV channels--"white spaces" that had traditionally been used by wireless microphones.
Many pro audio manufacturers campaigned against the adoption of such rules, and as Sennheiser's Joe Ciaudelli notes, they'll likely have to work together to some extent in order to deal with what's ahead:
"The specifics of these rules have not yet been made public. We will not know the full impact on wireless mic users until they are released. Once they are published, we will carefully review the details of the ruling and communicate what they mean for our customers.
"We were surprised that the Commission acted so quickly despite the erratic performance of white space device prototypes tested by the FCC's own engineers. However, it is encouraging that the FCC press release and each of the Commissioner's statements cite safeguards to protect wireless mics from interference. Clearly, the voice of our industry has had some impact. We hope that the rules are drafted to ensure adequate protection. Nevertheless, this ruling will pose new challenges for the pro audio industry, requiring high quality gear operated with best practices.
"We will continue to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our customers, industry groups and even our competitors to continually remind the FCC and our legislators of the necessity to maintain content production quality. U.S. news and entertainment is the best in the world and one of our highest valued exports. Wireless audio devices are essential to the high standard of TV, radio, film, and live entertainment that the global population has come to expect. Information will be released as it becomes available on our website.
Sennheiser USA Spectrum Re-Allocation