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SHURE WIRELESS TECHNOLOGY SELECTED FOR HOCKEY NIGHT IN CANADA

TORONTO, ON., Jan. 14, 2015—The announcement that Rogers Sportsnet had won the Canadian broadcast rights to NHL hockey, including the venerable Hockey Night in Canada, sent shock waves through the broadcast industry. With the nation’s eyes upon them, Sportsnet knew they had no room for error in delivering exceptional hockey programming right from the start.

To ensure success on the production side, Sportsnet contracted with RP Dynamics of Toronto to act as audio consultant for its new studio complex. The primary consultant on the project was Wireless and Broadcast Specialist John Christie of RP, responsible for designing and installing the systems needed to meet the network’s ambitious production goals, which required that all on-air talent be wireless. For Christie, there was no doubt that the best product choice for microphone and IFB (interruptible foldback) in-ear systems would be from Shure.

“To have all the studio talent on wireless all the time made product selection of paramount importance,” says Christie. “On a typical broadcast day, there are about 340 radio frequencies active within the facility. That leaves no room for compromise in product selection, which is why I recommended Shure Axient® for all microphone channels and PSM®1000 personal monitors for IFB systems. Both are designed to thrive in difficult and challenging RF environments.”

Shure Axient® is the only wireless product proven to detect and seamlessly switch away from interference before it can be heard. Using the system’s AXT600 Spectrum Manager for scanning and analysis, it literally keeps a “best available” list of backup frequencies active at all times for this purpose. According to the logs automatically generated by the Axient® system in the NHL Studios, there were five frequency changes deployed automatically during the first three weeks of the season, as the system smoothly prevented audible wireless problems during HNIC and other hockey broadcasts.

Another key feature of Axient® is that all transmitters can be fully remote controlled through Shure’s ShowLink® Access Point. “Not only do we have the ability to mute, sleep, and change frequencies, we can also change the transmitter’s output power and fine-tune the gain structure,” notes Christie. “As we change on-air personnel over the course of the broadcast day, that capability has proven to be incredibly powerful.”

In total, Rogers Sportsnet purchased 28 channels of Axient® wireless for its studio operations, 24 of which are bodypacks, along with five antenna distribution systems, the Spectrum Manager, and Shure AXT900 battery chargers.

As critical as its microphones are for the on-air talent, its IFB system is every bit as important. Christie notes that the PSM®1000 offers several design features that make it ideal for use in IFB applications, most notably the system’s diversity bodypack receivers, which is a huge advantage in a crowded RF area like the studios. The Shure MixMode® feature is also exceptionally broadcast-friendly.

“Using MixMode®, we can seamlessly send two separate signals from our digital intercoms, broadcasting in two channels but being heard as one. It’s almost like having an extra input,” Christie explains. “I also love that the PSM®1000 auto-detects whether the earpiece plug is mono or stereo, so the system doesn’t waste battery power trying to send two channels. It’s a small thing, but it turns out to be a big help.”

To monitor and control all the wireless traffic, each of the three control rooms is equipped with a computer running Shure Wireless Workbench® software, all networked into the main system. “I prefer Wireless Workbench to other systems because it accommodates all RF products and lets me manipulate all the Shure gear in real time,” says Christie. “That just makes life so much easier. Rather than having to take a list of frequencies over to a device and program it manually, all I do is push one button and all the devices are programmed. The advantage of having all your wireless gear working together on the same network is hard to overstate.”

“There has been a lot of interest in this project, which is only natural. Not only is it NHL hockey, but it’s Hockey Night in Canada—a national institution for 60 years. The technical challenge of creating an all-wireless studio of this size, and, in a building with so many existing RF channels, made it critical that we have the best equipment, properly deployed,” concludes John Christie of RP Dynamics. “Now, with the new season underway, we’ve proven that Shure Axient® and PSM®1000 are the right products for the job. There have literally been no wireless issues on air, and the team at Rogers Sportsnet is ecstatic. We couldn’t have asked for a better result.”

To learn more about Shure Axient®, please visit http://www.axient.net.

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About Shure Incorporated

Founded in 1925, Shure Incorporated (www.shure.com) is widely acknowledged as the world’s leading manufacturer of microphones and audio electronics. Over the years, the Company has designed and produced many high-quality professional and consumer audio products that have become legendary for performance, reliability, and value. Shure’s diverse product line includes world-class wired microphones, wireless microphone systems, in-ear personal monitoring systems, conferencing and discussion systems, networked audio systems, award-winning earphones and headphones, and top-rated phonograph cartridges. Today, Shure products are the first choice whenever audio performance is a top priority.

Shure Incorporated is headquartered in Niles, Illinois, in the United States. The Company also has regional sales and marketing headquarters in Eppingen, Germany, and Hong Kong, China, with more than 30 additional manufacturing facilities and regional sales offices throughout the Americas, EMEA, and Asia.

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WRAPPING UP BIG BAND RECORDING WITH SHURE RIBBONS

NILES, Ill., Jan. 12, 2015—Chicago engineer/producer and sound designer Freddie Breitberg has a resume that encompasses everything from classic analog recording techniques to today’s digital world across all musical genres. One constant in that journey has been Breitberg’s love for ribbon microphones. Recently, he had a big band recording with The Great Postmodern Nightmare. Because some of his collection of classic RCA ribbon mics were due for ribbon refurbishing, Breitberg decided that the time was right to try Shure’s distinctly modern ribbon microphone technology.

“Ribbon microphones are like old friends: You love them for their warmth and personality,” he says. “They have always been a key tool for me in music recording, and I’ve always had a collection of vintage ribbons to offer my clients. This project, which was actually a crowd-funded CD, gave me a great chance to explore the personalities of the Shure KSM ribbon mics.”

The sessions took place over two days of live recording at I.V. Lab Studios on Chicago’s north side. Breitberg deployed the Shure KSM313 on all the horns, while using the KSM353 as part of his Mid-Side stereo room miking arrangement and on amplifiers.

“I’ve done a lot of big band work live in the studio, and came up with a sort of horseshoe layout for the horns to take advantage of room acoustics and the figure-eight pattern of the ribbon mics,” he explains. “I spot-mic each instrument individually, and I use Mid-Side stereo miking to capture the room. It gives me both room sound and isolation.”

To capture The Great Postmodern Nightmare horns, Breitberg used a set of KSM313s, which have a unique ribbon design in that the two sides of the microphone produce distinctly different frequency responses—neutral from the front, slightly brighter from the rear. Breitberg felt the KSM313’s rear capsule was ideal for the job. “The 313 sounds fantastic on horns,” he says. “They are as warm as my vintage RCA ribbons, but with more high end. That means less EQ and less processing in mix – and that is always a good thing in recording.”

In working with a large group of identical KSM313s, Breitberg was also struck by a couple other things. “They are just wonderfully consistent from mic to mic,” he reports. “Compared to other ribbons, they have plenty of output, and their null points in the figure-eight pattern are tremendously deep, which really helps with isolation in my room scheme. The results were really compelling.”

Breitberg’s big band technique, which he calls “working in perpendiculars,” places the band in a U-shaped seating arrangement with the drums at the base. For this band, one leg of the “U” had four trumpets directly across and parallel to the drums, with the bones and saxophone sections perpendicular and directly across from one another. The rhythm section of bass, piano, and guitars was arrayed on either side of the drum kit.

Rather than the traditional distant ambient room miking technique, Breitberg places two Mid-Side stereo set-ups inside the “U.” Mid-Side stereo combines two mics, one bidirectional and one cardioid, to create a controllable, phase-cohesive stereo image. For this task, he used the Shure KSM353 with its flat, uncolored response in the side position, paired with a KSM32 cardioid condenser to capture the on-axis sound.

“I cut my teeth on orchestra and big band, and I’ve developed this technique over the years,” explains Breitberg. “It’s killer because it locks in your phase. The Mid-Side mics act more like EQ and compression as opposed to ambience—in a positive way. The matching Shure ribbons really accentuated that.”

Recording the 18-piece group live was a real test of the microphones and of Breitberg’s technique. “The first time I played back the tracks, it sounded like it was already mixed,” he says. “It produced nearly perfect phase coherency for a really natural blend, and the deep null in the figure-eight pattern gave me enough isolation to do punch-in fixes if needed,” he says. “When you think about it, to do that, recording an entire big band live, is pretty amazing.”

As a result, Fred Breitberg decided to add the KSM313 to his mic locker. In fact, he purchased 13 of them—the largest documented sale of ribbon microphones in Shure history. “These are great-sounding mics, and add so much more flexibility than a ribbon that’s identical on both sides,” he says. “They have the warmth and personality of a vintage ribbon, but with higher output and SPL handling that vintage RCAs never had. Though they’re perfect for horns and guitar amps, I’ll also be using them on strings, nylon guitars, piano, drums, and whatever else they test well on. I decided I had to have them.”

For more information on Freddie Breitberg, visit www.freddiebaudio.com. For more information on Shure KSM Ribbon Microphones, visit www.shure.com.
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About Shure Incorporated

Founded in 1925, Shure Incorporated (www.shure.com) is widely acknowledged as the world’s leading manufacturer of microphones and audio electronics. Over the years, the Company has designed and produced many high-quality professional and consumer audio products that have become legendary for performance, reliability, and value. Shure’s diverse product line includes world-class wired microphones, wireless microphone systems, in-ear personal monitoring systems, conferencing and discussion systems, networked audio systems, award-winning earphones and headphones, and top-rated phonograph cartridges. Today, Shure products are the first choice whenever audio performance is a top priority.

Shure Incorporated is headquartered in Niles, Illinois, in the United States. The Company also has regional sales and marketing headquarters in Eppingen, Germany, and Hong Kong, China, with more than 30 additional manufacturing facilities and regional sales offices throughout the Americas, EMEA, and Asia.
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Shure Unveils Model 5575LE Unidyne® Limited Edition Microphone

NILES, Ill., Dec. 1, 2014—As the world-renowned leader in microphones, Shure Incorporated has designed and manufactured many innovative products for the audio industry over the past nine decades. However, none have been more impactful or iconic than the Unidyne® microphone. In January 2014, the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) presented Shure with the Milestone Award for the Unidyne technology. Being honored with this prestigious award puts Shure in the same company as famed inventors, including Guglielmo Marconi, Nikola Tesla, Michael Faraday, and Benjamin Franklin. This honor also puts the invention of the Unidyne technology alongside landmark events such as the invention of the first computer and the Apollo Space program. To mark this achievement, and to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the development and availability of the 55 Unidyne microphone, Shure is proud to announce a new Limited Edition Unidyne model, the 5575LE Unidyne® Limited Edition Cardioid Dynamic Microphone.

A special anniversary version of the iconic 55 Unidyne cardioid dynamic microphone, the 5575LE replicates the original design, with appropriate improvements in durability and sound quality. A sublime recreation for collectors, the serialized limited edition 5575LE features the current Unidyne III cardioid element, the classic large outer grill, vintage badging, and zinc die-cast, with a silver finish desk stand. The microphone comes in an aluminum flight case with 75th anniversary logo branding, and includes two Unidyne photo prints and a certificate of authenticity, featuring a tribute from Shure Chairman Mrs. Rose L. Shure. Only 5575 pieces of this model will be available worldwide.

“The Unidyne is the most recognized microphone in the world, used by countless performers, including Elvis and Sinatra, as well as numerous contemporary artists” said Scott Sullivan, Senior Director, Global Product Management at Shure Incorporated. “The 5575LE pays homage to the beloved and classic 55 Unidyne, packaging together vintage aesthetic and performance features for collectors and performers.”

Introduced in 1939, the 55 Unidyne was swiftly adopted as the microphone of choice for broadcast, public address, recording, and two-way radios. As the popularity of the 55 grew, it found its way into many performance environments that would cement its iconic status and legacy as “the microphone that needs no name.” To the industry, the 55 Unidyne provided control of feedback and reduction of off-axis ambient sound. In the hands of popular performers and heads of state, the 55 Unidyne became recognized as a familiar cultural presence and a sign of quality. Its design has come to symbolize what many think of when they hear the word “microphone.”

The Shure 5575LE Unidyne Limited Edition Cardioid Dynamic Microphone will be available in December 2014 at a retail price of $399. To learn more, please visit www.shure.com.

About Shure Incorporated

Founded in 1925, Shure Incorporated (www.shure.com) is widely acknowledged as the world’s leading manufacturer of microphones and audio electronics. Over the years, the Company has designed and produced many high-quality professional and consumer audio products that have become legendary for performance, reliability, and value. Shure’s diverse product line includes world-class wired microphones, wireless microphone systems, in-ear personal monitoring systems, conferencing and discussion systems, networked audio systems, award-winning earphones and headphones, and top-rated phonograph cartridges. Today, Shure products are the first choice whenever audio performance is a top priority.

Shure Incorporated is headquartered in Niles, Illinois, in the United States. The Company also has regional sales and marketing headquarters in Eppingen, Germany, and Hong Kong, China, with more than 30 additional manufacturing facilities and regional sales offices throughout the Americas, EMEA, and Asia.

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Shure Announces Winter Rebates for SM Microphones and SE Earphones

NILES, Ill., Nov. 20, 2014—Shure Incorporated today announced holiday product rebates on select SM microphones and, for the first time, a rebate offer for the SE215 Sound Isolating™ Earphones and SE535 Sound Isolating™ Earphones. Customers who purchase SM57 and SM58® microphones can earn up to $60 back ($10 back on up to six individual microphone purchases). This also includes a special $30 rebate on the DMK57-52 Drum Microphone Kit. For earphone products, customers can save $10 on SE215 models and $50 on SE535 models. The promotion will kick off on Friday, Nov. 21, 2014, and run through Jan. 11, 2015.

The SM57 and SM58 have been industry standards for almost 50 years due to their unparalleled mix of audio quality and rugged dependability. The SM57 “workhorse” is highly versatile for clean reproduction of amplified and acoustic instruments. The legendary SM58 is tuned to accentuate the warmth and clarity of lead and back-up vocals.

SE Earphones feature award-winning sound isolating technology and unique sound signatures. The SE215 have a single Dynamic MicroDriver and provide detailed sound with enhanced bass, making them a great option for personal listening or professional monitoring. Featuring Triple High-Definition MicroDrivers, the SE535 uses a dedicated tweeter and dual woofers to deliver spacious sound with rich bass for a true audiophile listening experience.

“With the holiday season right around the corner, our winter SM and SE rebate offers are an opportunity to purchase the microphone you’ve been coveting or give the gift of premium earphones to a fellow music lover. You could also follow a ‘one for you, five for me’ philosophy. We promise not to tell,” said Ellen Mahon, Marketing Communications Manager at Shure. “With a variety of models and pricing options now coupled with our holiday rebates, Shure’s award-winning microphones and earphones are more accessible than ever before.”

Rebates include $10 back on an SM57-LC, SM57-X2U, SM58-LC, SM58-CN, SM58S, or SM58-X2U microphone purchase; $10 back on an SE215 purchase; and $50 back on an SE535 purchase. SE215 earphones are available in clear or translucent black, while the SE535 is available in clear, metallic bronze, or a Special Edition red color at select retailers. The DMK57-52 Drum Microphone Kit, also included in the offer, is eligible for a $30 mail-in-rebate. Rebates will be honored for up to six SE products, six SM products, and two drum kits.

For more information on Shure’s holiday promotion and how to take advantage of the current rebates, please visit the SM microphone holiday rebate website and the SE Sound Isolating Earphone rebate page.


Shure SM Microphone and SE Earphone Holiday Rebates Available Through Jan. 11, 2015

About Shure Incorporated
Founded in 1925, Shure Incorporated (www.shure.com) is widely acknowledged as the world’s leading manufacturer of microphones and audio electronics. Over the years, the Company has designed and produced many high-quality professional and consumer audio products that have become legendary for performance, reliability, and value. Shure’s diverse product line includes world-class wired microphones, wireless microphone systems, in-ear personal monitoring systems, conferencing and discussion systems, networked audio systems, award-winning earphones and headphones, and top-rated phonograph cartridges. Today, Shure products are the first choice whenever audio performance is a top priority.

Shure Incorporated is headquartered in Niles, Illinois, in the United States. The Company also has regional sales and marketing headquarters in Eppingen, Germany, and Hong Kong, China, with more than 30 additional manufacturing facilities and regional sales offices throughout the Americas, EMEA, and Asia.

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SHURE WIRELESS SYSTEMS SPARK SUCCESS AT 2014 CMA AWARDS

NILES, Ill., Nov. 19, 2014— The live ABC telecast of the 48th Annual CMA Awards from Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena was a huge success in the ratings, drawing more than 16 million viewers. The three-hour program also set standards for production, with 21 music performances captured, mixed, and broadcast by an A-list production team, who are all veterans of the demanding award show circuit.

To ensure quick transitions between acts, the production team employs as much wireless technology as possible. As is customary, a mix of the major wireless microphone brands was available to the performers, while Shure PSM® 1000 personal monitors were the exclusive choice for all performances as stage in-ear monitors.

Production mixer Mark King, a Los Angeles-based freelancer, has been providing the final broadcast mix for the past six CMA telecasts. As the person who provides the live mix of music, host microphones, and crowd noise to the network, he is acutely aware of the need for quality audio.

“We want the performers to be comfortable on stage, so the choice of vocal microphones for live performance is largely decided by the artists themselves,” he notes. “Year in and year out, the vast majority of those performers turn out to be Shure users, which is really great. From a product standpoint, Shure wireless is my preference in general. It really is a great product.”

Shure users took home a lot of major awards this year, including Entertainer of the Year for Luke Bryan, Song of the Year for Kacey Musgraves, Vocal Group of the Year for Little Big Town, and Vocal Duo of the Year for Florida Georgia Line. All performed live during the show.

Led by audio producers Tom Davis and Paul Sandweiss, the production team for this year’s CMA Awards was strictly A-list. The systems provider was ATK Audiotek, which brought in the PA system, wireless mics and in-ear systems, and backline gear, with wireless frequency coordination and system design handled by James Stoffo. The broadcast music mix in 5.1 surround was again provided by M3 (Music Mix Mobile), with Jay Vicari and John Harris at the controls. Inside the arena, the music was mixed by Rick Shimer, while Pat Baltzell handled the production mix.

Monitors for all music performances were mixed by the team of Jason Spence of Nashville’s J Sound Services and independent engineer Tom Pesa. “We had 100 percent Shure PSM 1000 in-ears again this year,” says Spence. “Tom and I had 20 channels available, and we used upwards of 60 wireless beltpacks during the show. We also had four hardwired in-ear systems, mainly for drummers. Those were powered by the Shure P6HW bodypack.”

With the diversity design of Shure’s PSM 1000 bodypacks, Spence reports no interference problems in the all-important in-ear mixes. “The PSM 1000 provides the RF performance required on hostile events such as award shows. And it doesn’t hurt that they have the cleanest sound and the widest stereo image of any IEM system. I received numerous compliments on the ear mixes again this year, and I attribute a lot of that to the sound quality and performance of the Shure PSM 1000.”

House sound mixer Rick Shimer is also a big fan of Shure wireless. “Whether they are using a classic SM58 head or the KSM9 condenser, I know I’m going to get that signature Shure sound. And RF-wise, they are solid as a rock,” he says. “It’s amazing how far we’ve come with wireless systems. They are so reliable, we don’t think twice about using them everywhere, even backing vocals, which is a huge help in terms of production and staging. We moved 21 music performances on and off of two stages during a three-hour show, and there was never a glitch.”

While Shimer loves the way advanced technology helps him as a sound engineer, it was actually a new take on an old school product that impressed at the 2014 CMAs. “This was the first year I used Shure headphones at front of house – the SRH440 –and it was a refreshing change for me. They were provided by ATK, along with the console, and they were really comfortable and sounded great.”

With the event complete, the production team scattered, knowing they would soon meet again. “We literally had the same production team this year as last at the CMAs, which really helps to create a smooth show,” says Mark King. “Those of us who specialize in live broadcast award shows love what we do, and working with great people and great products is a big part of that.”

NASHVILLE, TN - Kacey Musgraves and Loretta Lynn perform during the 48th annual CMA Awards at the Bridgestone Arena on November 5, 2014 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images)

NASHVILLE, TN – Kacey Musgraves and Loretta Lynn perform during the 48th annual CMA Awards at the Bridgestone Arena on November 5, 2014 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images)

About Shure Incorporated

Founded in 1925, Shure Incorporated (www.shure.com) is widely acknowledged as the world’s leading manufacturer of microphones and audio electronics. Over the years, the Company has designed and produced many high-quality professional and consumer audio products that have become legendary for performance, reliability, and value. Shure’s diverse product line includes world-class wired microphones, wireless microphone systems, in-ear personal monitoring systems, conferencing and discussion systems, networked audio systems, award-winning earphones and headphones, and top-rated phonograph cartridges. Today, Shure products are the first choice whenever audio performance is a top priority.

Shure Incorporated is headquartered in Niles, Illinois, in the United States. The Company also has regional sales and marketing headquarters in Eppingen, Germany, and Hong Kong, China, with more than 30 additional manufacturing facilities and regional sales offices throughout the Americas, EMEA, and Asia.

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Nashville’s New City Winery Gets Outfitted With An Abundance Of Shure Gear

NILES, Ill., Nov.12, 2014—With locations in New York City, Chicago, and Napa, City Winery, the brainchild of Michael Dorf, founder of the iconic Knitting Factory, came to Nashville with one goal—to create a space that embodies the city’s shared passions for wine and music. A unique facility, City Winery combines a fully-functioning winery with intimate concerts, food and wine classes, private events, and fine dining. With upcoming performances from JT Hodges and Rhett Miller, the City Winery team turned to Shure to outfit the new location with audio equipment for private parties, a small restaurant stage, and a larger 570-person music venue.

City Winery partnered with Tour Supply, a company well-known in the live touring industry and audio partner for the existing City Winery locations, to integrate high-quality, intuitive gear. The challenge was to identify cost-effective, yet reliable products to serve a variety of different functions. Also, while the City Winery music venue is supported by a house production manager, the restaurant, winery, and private rooms required frequency agile systems that could be operated seamlessly by restaurant staff who have very little technical audio experience.

To address the many needs of City Winery, Tour Supply selected four channels of ULX-S® Wireless Systems and PSM® 900 Personal Monitoring Systems for the music venue. The team installed three channels of Shure’s entry-level BLX Wireless Systems for the restaurant and winery areas, MX412 Gooseneck Microphones to support corporate presentations and a dash of Shure wired and wireless microphones, including Beta 58, Beta 91A, Beta 98A, SM58®, and SM57.

“City Winery has been an amazing project for our team. The combination of wine, music, and culinary arts is something that appeals to the senses, but when under one roof, it makes for a challenging audio installation,” said Lance Wascom, Tour Supply CEO. “We’ve had close to a 20-year relationship with Shure. Using Shure equipment was a no-brainer for us, as it was for Mr. Dorf and his team. Not only is the sound quality superior, but the gear comes with great support from the Shure customer service team and our local reps over at HWPco Inc.”

A month into operations, the ULX-S Wireless System has proven effective in delivering premium sound quality for music acts. Additionally, the wireless is reliable and in a compact, seek form factor, fitting for the venue layout. In regard to PSM 900, Wascom commented “it’s the best dollar for dollar investment. We trust PSM for our touring artists and the PSM 900 delivers superb audio quality for the professional musicians performing at City Winery.”

In the restaurant and winery, the BLX Wireless System—with professional quality sound, simple setup, and an intuitive interface—has been easy for employees to use. The one-touch QuickScan frequency selection, that quickly locates the best open frequency in case of interference, means that employees don’t have to be bothered with the complexities of manual scanning. Additionally, the quality construction ensures it will hold up in the high-traffic environment.

To learn more about Nashville’s first fully-operational winery and the upcoming events at City Winery, please visit www.citywinery.com/nashville. To learn more about Tour Supply, visit www.toursupply.com

For more information about Shure, please visit www.shure.com

Nashville’s new City Winery supported by an abundance of Shure gear.

Nashville’s new City Winery supported by an abundance of Shure gear.

City Winery_Image 2

Shure SM58® on stage a Nashville’s City Winery.

About Shure Incorporated

Founded in 1925, Shure Incorporated (www.shure.com) is widely acknowledged as the world’s leading manufacturer of microphones and audio electronics. Over the years, the Company has designed and produced many high-quality professional and consumer audio products that have become legendary for performance, reliability, and value.  Shure’s diverse product line includes world-class wired microphones, wireless microphone systems, in-ear personal monitoring systems, conferencing and discussion systems, networked audio systems, award-winning earphones and headphones, and top-rated phonograph cartridges. Today, Shure products are the first choice whenever audio performance is a top priority.

Shure Incorporated is headquartered in Niles, Illinois, in the United States. The Company also has regional sales and marketing headquarters in Eppingen, Germany, and Hong Kong, China, with more than 30 additional manufacturing facilities and regional sales offices throughout the Americas, EMEA, and Asia.

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Shure Wireless Dominates Telecast of 68th Tony Awards on CBS

NILES, Ill., June 17, 2014—The CBS broadcast of the 2014 Tony Awards, which aired June 8, was one of the most complex in the event’s history. From host Hugh Jackman’s sprawling, bouncing, opening number to the on-stage gathering of all winners for a closing rendition of “On Broadway,” viewers were treated to a fast-paced production that included a record 17 musical acts and a live orchestra in Radio City Music Hall.

Managing RF system design and frequency coordination for Firehouse Productions was Vinny Siniscal. “With so much real estate to cover, so many frequencies to manage and so many live bands, I specified Shure UHF-R systems again this year,” he states. “When I’m doing a live network broadcast, that’s my preference. Even though the product has been around ten years or so, I know there’s nothing else out there that I trust to be robust enough to survive in such a crowded RF environment.”

This year’s production used almost 250 channels of wireless, 64 of which were for microphones. In addition, all eight channels of in-ear monitors on the Tony stage were Shure PSM® 1000 systems. The production also used wireless intercom systems, effects cues, and ENG cameras – most notably the Steadicam following Jackman from the red carpet to the stage on the opening number. “Producers design these shows assuming that whatever wireless is required can be accommodated,” notes Siniscal. “If that means more channels in less available spectrum, then so be it. It’s our job to make it happen.”

All but eight of the wireless mics were Shure UHF-R—the only exceptions were a handful of costumes with other transmitters already sewn inside. Most of the 56 Shure channels were bodypacks, including 32 UR1M micro-packs. Twelve channels were UR2 handheld transmitters, with an SM58® capsule for Hugh Jackman and Beta 58 elements for most other artists, including Carole King, LL Cool J, and Sting’s choir. “Firehouse provided full combo systems, and, of course, we had all Shure capsules available,” says Siniscal. “At the Tony Awards, you have to be ready for anything.”

One of Siniscal’s biggest challenges this year was the creation of six separate wireless reception zones. “That was driven by the opening number,” he relates. “It started on the red carpet, which is literally outside and open to all the RF on the street. Then we had to cover the stage-level and basement-level elevator banks, plus the elevator shaft itself. Of course, we also had the usual zones for the main stage and front of house, plus the backstage zone.”

To handle the audio transition from zone to zone, Siniscal found the Shure UA874 active directional antenna to be a valuable tool. “What I love about these antennas is that the RF output is switchable from -6dB to +12dB, including unity gain,” he explains. “That’s a key feature, as it allows me to balance for different RF levels across the various zones. I can also turn each zone on and off remotely via the distribution amp.”

With a lot of advance work, three scanners, and a lot of Shure equipment, Firehouse Productions contributed flawless wireless to the telecast for the fourth consecutive year. “Doing the Tony Awards is always a big challenge, because every year, the production grows,” says Siniscal. “We had about 50 more wireless channels compared to last year, plus the outdoor coverage. That means competing with whatever is happening in Midtown – which is a lot of variables to deal with, especially for a live network broadcast. But we had a great team; we did our advance work, and had the right tools for the job. Fortunately, it went off without a hitch, and I look forward to doing it again next year.”

 

Host Hugh Jackman speaks onstage during the 68th Annual Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall on June 8, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for Tony Awards Productions)

 

 

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