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Old Sunday, November 4th, 2012, 11:53 AM
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Question FM Transmitter

Ok, so one problem that our church has is that the people in our nursery and sunday school rooms have to miss worship since you aren't able to hear worship in there. I was challenged with being able to hear worship in there. My idea after researching was to use an FM transmitter to be able to hear it in there. The people in there would just use the cd players in the rooms to listen. The problem is, I can only find small MP3 player ones that have a 10-20 ft distance. There are a few walls it has to go through and to go straight from where the tech people are, it would be around 70-80 ft. Also, I'm trying to keep it real cheap. Any suggestions? Thanks!
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Old Monday, November 5th, 2012, 05:59 AM
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First of all - as this is your first post - welcome to CMN.

I would (personally) avoid any form of FM transmitter/receiver from my experience. As you are on a budget (although you don't say what the budget is) the cheap units will invariably be problematic.

I am also a bit confused as to why the Sunday school rooms would want the service piped into them. Wouldn't that be a distraction for the teachers and kids?

We used to offer a free CD-ROM of the service to Sunday school teachers a week behind so they could "catch up" in their own time. The CD-ROMs were re-recordable so could be re-used again every few weeks. That was OK while we were offering CD-ROMS of the service for purchase to members of the congregation. We now put the services on the Web in MP3 format and all of the Sunday school teachers download them and listen to them in the car on the way to work or whilst doing the ironing (in the case of my wife).

Our nursery is clearly a different story. We just ran a speaker cable from a low-powered, 100V line amplifier located in the sound booth to a speaker in the nursery. The speaker has its own local volume control. We set the maximum volume on the amplifier in the sound booth and they can control it to the desired level locally.

This should be the cheaper (and less problematic) solution. You may be able to pick up some used or surplus equipment cheap (or even free) from a local Church or other establishment (e.g. a restaurant) that may be undergoing some refurbishment work. Just a thought.

Dave
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Old Monday, November 5th, 2012, 06:00 AM
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My suggestion would be a 70 volt (70v) system.
God Bless,
Mark
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Old Friday, November 16th, 2012, 05:21 PM
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Don't bother with those FM transmitters - the majority are designed to reach say a car aerial from inside a car. You're not going to have much luck going through walls if they're even slightly thick!

If running the associated cabling isn't an option for you (though I would stress I think that's probably the ideal solution from a technical standpoint) then you could perhaps look at hacking a radio mic or two to get the transmitter / receiver out and then run your audio over that. Not an ideal solution, but much more likely to work than an off the shelf cheap FM transmitter!
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Old Saturday, November 17th, 2012, 08:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mfausz View Post
My suggestion would be a 70 volt (70v) system.
God Bless,
Mark
If you are going to do it, do it right, and don't try to do it on your own understanding, because that often means you have barriers in your mind, based on the lack of experience.

FM transmitters are low output (legal ones you can buy on the market without a license anyway) and will not be good quality.

Do a 70V distributed system, with volume controls on the speakers or in the walls, and call it a day. These systems are not very much money. If you have an existing amplifier, chances are you can make it work with a $100 transformer coupled to the amp, some speaker wire run from that amp to your speaker locations, and $60 speakers with transformers.

Consult an experienced, local, contractor.
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Old Monday, November 19th, 2012, 05:13 PM
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I agree with everything else that was said- Run a wire. If you can't, then hire someone to do it and watch what they do.

But if it MUST be wireless, another option would be to use your cell phones. If you and people in other areas have unlimited plans, along with the ability to connect speakers to your phones..(e.g. if you have an Android or iPhone) then you can use that along with freeconferencecall.com or some other conference call provider to "broadcast" the service to the remote locations.

If your rooms are small enough, usually the built-in speakerphone is sufficient.
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Old Monday, November 19th, 2012, 08:05 PM
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+1 on all the 70V suggestions. Even paying a contractor to pull the wire and install it will be cheaper than an adequate FM based system.

We use an FM system to transmit the choir mix to iPod Nano's, and it works reasonably well. The transmitter and antenna was somewhere in the neighborhood of $1,500 I think. Maybe more. It's been over a year...
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Old Wednesday, November 21st, 2012, 07:39 PM
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I'm not sure that using a cell phone would be a particularly good approach... the compression and bandwidth limitations of telephone transmission will basically alter the quality of the audio to the point of being marginal (IMHO).

There are good FM transmission systems out there... but as has been mentioned, a license may be required for use. Decade make some very good gear.
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Old Saturday, November 24th, 2012, 09:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brent Bauman View Post
the compression and bandwidth limitations of telephone transmission will basically alter the quality of the audio to the point of being marginal
Good point! I forgot that the frequency range is between 800 to 1300 Hz.. which may be good enough for speech but everything else might pose a challenge.
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Old Sunday, November 25th, 2012, 03:06 AM
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I would implore you to run a cable. A simple 100v system would be suitable, and easily expanded down the track if you see the need to add additional breakout rooms.
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