K-8 schools have lately been embracing the “A” in “AV” more, and the St. Hilary School, in Fairlawn, OH, offers an example of that, with a 32-classroom integration of 32 ATW-1301 System 10 PRO digital wireless systems from Audio-Technica. Part of a larger overall classroom audio/video/computer integration, the wireless systems included 32 ATW-1301 UniPak body-pack systems with AT831cW unidirectional lapel microphones, and two ATW-1302 handheld systems with handheld microphone/transmitters, bringing a new dimension in education audio in the form of hearing and speaking assistance. The System 10 PRO wireless were installed and integrated by MjS Electronics of Richfield, OH.
“The System 10 units make a huge difference in the clarity of the classroom sound at the school,” observed Mark Schwenning, president and director of engineering for MjS Electronics, noting that they address multiple issues in modern technology-driven pedagogy. He went on to add, “For instance, the System 10 PRO units allow the teachers to be heard clearly by all students, especially students with challenged hearing. They also help save teachers’ voices, because they can be heard easily without having to raise their voices.”
From an installation perspective, Schwenning said, “It is clearly beneficial to have a single system family of components that can be utilized throughout a campus with little or no need to do frequency coordination and planning. In fact, despite the extensive deployment of 2.4-MHz Wi-Fi throughout the school, they have experienced ‘zero interference issues’ with the System 10 PRO, and the System 10 offers a school all of the basic features that they’ll require and does so at a significantly reduced cost, which makes them a good choice for the budget-conscience educational system.”
The System 10 PRO provides many key features, such as an LED receiver display that shows RF signal level, system ID, transmitter battery level, and system link status, as well as automatic frequency selection for interference-free operation. The System 10 PRO has other advantages: two channels take up only a half rack space, allowing the installation of a second system in some of the classrooms. In this case, MjS Electronics installed an additional Audio-Technica ATW-RU13 receiver and added Audio-Technica ATW-T1002 handheld microphones to the room’s media complement. “Previously, when students had to make presentations, the teachers had given them their lapel mics to speak through, but that's not a great solution,” Schwenning explained. “Because of the compact form factor of the System 10 PRO we were able to add an additional channel so that a handheld microphone could be used in some of the classrooms, which greatly enhanced the teacher and student communication. The System 10 PRO offers K-8 schools like this a real advantage in terms of cost and performance.”
Audio-Technica’s System 10 PRO Rack-Mount Digital Wireless System provides the same interference-free operation in the 2.4 GHz range (outside TV bands) as the original System 10 wireless system but with expanded features and versatility. The half-rack chassis is equipped to house two receiver units that can be operated locally or released from the chassis and mounted remotely (up to 328 feet away) via Ethernet cable. Up to five chassis (10 receiver units) can be linked using the RJ12 cable included with each system, creating a stable, multichannel system with the simultaneous use of up to 10 channels. Like all the products in the System 10 wireless family, the PRO rack-mount features 24-bit operation, easy setup, clear, natural sound quality, and three levels of diversity assurance: frequency, time, and space. Frequency Diversity sends the signal on two dynamically allocated frequencies for interference-free communication. Time Diversity sends the signal in multiple time slots to maximize immunity to multipath interference. Space Diversity uses two antennas on each transmitter and receiver unit to maximize signal integrity. Each System 10 PRO rack-mount system includes an ATW-RC13 receiver chassis with rack-mount adapters, one or two ATW-RU13 receiver units with corresponding AT8690 receiver unit mounting brackets, a joining plate (for dual-channel systems only), one RJ12 cable, one AC adapter, and one or two ATW-T1001 UniPak® body-pack or ATW-T1002 handheld transmitters, or one of each. Both the receiver chassis and transmitters feature easy-to-read displays. These systems are also available in headworn and lavalier microphone configurations.