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found this in my new house

Discussion in 'Pro Audio Equipment' started by katanaplanet, Apr 13, 2014.

  1. katanaplanet

    katanaplanet Active Member

    Found a brand new "shure beta 87" dual wireless system in one of the cabinets. Its brand new in a silver metal briefcase. There is an extra briefcase too. Contents are two mics, receiver, charger, antennas, clips, and manual.
    I am not into pro audio but high end audio is my old hobby. I dont know how much these are worth or the best place to sell it.
    Can use some help from someone with more knowledge than I have on this!!
    Thanks in advance.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. dvdhawk

    dvdhawk Well-Known Member

    I've never seen one quite like it. It doesn't look very recent. For better or worse, eBay dictates the value of older gear (even if it's new in box). If the frequency is in the 700MHz range, the transmitter and receiver are essentially worthless in the US, due to recent frequency reallocation. In which case, you might be able to sell the mic capsules and case.

    If you're outside the US, maybe someone else will recognize it, and be able to tell you what frequencies have been rendered useless in your area (if any).

    If there is a sticker somewhere on the receiver, or transmitter, that gives a model number and frequency that would help you get more productive results
     
    bigtree likes this.
  3. Boswell

    Boswell Moderator Distinguished Member

    That is (was) quite a high-end radio mic system, but appears to be fairly old. As the Hawk says, it may be illegal to use it these days because of radio frequency re-allocations. Since you don't say where you are located, I can't be any more specific than that.

    It's worth contacting Shure giving the exact model and serial numbers of the units, as they offer a re-specification service to move the radio frequencies to current legal ones for models where that is possible. Be warned that the frequency changing could cost a fair bit.

    Another alternative is to realise the sonic value of the Beta 87s and get someone to re-engineer the radio mics as wired mics. I've done this work (in the UK) on several different radio mic systems since the global frequency re-allocations, but never on a Beta 87 set.

    The third alternative is to put the radio mic system in its present form on Ebay, stating that they may not be legal to use. I can't promise you would get a huge amount for them, but if you were in the UK, I would certainly bid, with the expectation of re-working them as wired mics.
     
  4. paulears

    paulears Well-Known Member

    I've never seen this model at all - is it actually a Shure or something that looks like one? Dual receivers have always been very expensive, yet that looks to be rather simple? Maybe just not one we've seen in the UK.
     
  5. katanaplanet

    katanaplanet Active Member

    Sorry. Did not mention that I am in USA.
     
  6. katanaplanet

    katanaplanet Active Member

    It has balanced outputs in the back
     
  7. dvdhawk

    dvdhawk Well-Known Member

    It's got to have additional markings on it indicating frequency (_ _ _._ _ _ MHz).

    The transmitter markings are often inside the battery compartment, or on the end opposite the mic capsule. The receiver will at least have a sticker with the model number. (Current receiver examples being, SLX4, ULX4)

    In recent years, Shure has the mic series as the first letter(s) of the model number. Their body pack transmitters end in the number 1, handheld transmitters usually end in the number 2, receivers the number 4. So a complete handheld system, has typically been marked, [Series + Transmitter type, + Receiver type / Mic Capsule. So as a current example SLX24/Beta87A.
     
  8. katanaplanet

    katanaplanet Active Member

    few more pics. It does not have any letter after Beta 87. Frequency is 254.1 and 224.5 on the receiver and 254.1 on the microphones. I attached pic of the owners manual too.
     

    Attached Files:

  9. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Well-Known Member

    Well, it doesn't matter that it has balanced outputs on the back. Fact remains, this is likely on a frequency, in which can no longer be used. I mean ya can try? It might interfere with someone's cell phone call, Internet connection or perhaps, Police & Fire departments. The cell phone and the Internet connection, I really don't give much of a damn about. As a result, I'd still likely take my chances with it? And really, nothing is high-power enough to truly interfere even with Police & Fire. Remember, these frequencies were sold, by the US government, based upon the same thing that caused our financial collapse, not so terribly many years ago, called greed. And a lot of us don't buy into greed. So my attitude is, if it was a legitimate purchase in the USA? It would be like telling you that you now can only have 2 children and yet... you had three. You're going to have to give one up. Would ya? I don't think so? So if you spend good money on a good wireless system and suddenly the government tells you they got greedy and you shouldn't use it anymore. Are ya really going to listen to them? I wouldn't.

    I might feel differently if it involved a huge Network Television style production? Where perhaps 16 or more wireless microphones needed to be used. Then ya need a real wireless, RF, coordinator.

    The only possibilities you might face with occasional intermittent use, in different locales, is receiving those new digital data streams, on your frequencies? Remember, the same thing happened with CB radios and early wireless microphones in places like churches. Every so once in a while, some moron with an incorrectly tuned up, linear amplifier on his CB radio, would come booming through the churches PA system, the guitar amplifiers at the nightclubs, the PA systems at the bars. And it's really nasty sounding when that happens. But it has in fact happened, rather regularly, including from earlier, analog, cell phones, in recent years, making terrible noises through PA systems that aren't even using any wireless equipment. So if your receiver frequency is quiet? Ya might be fine?

    Otherwise, I really don't think it would be a good investment, just for the microphone capsules. You're paying for a sophisticated wireless system. The capsules are a mere fraction of the cost of the system. Unless they want to give it away, cheep cheep cheep, cheap cheap cheap?

    Also because it's a SHURE, they stand behind their products. They have been issuing the ability to reallocate the frequencies used on your existing system, for a nominal fee. But we are currently again in another state of RF allocation, transitioning as wireless devices and connectivity have run out of frequencies to use. They want us all to go wireless in the near future. Not all of us are there yet. And I feel I can only force people so much. A lot of folks just don't have the budgets to replace and/or upgrade what they spent good legal tender on. And I think that's a little bit like Imminent Domain? Where people are forced out of their long-term family homes to make room for the new freeway or apartment complex. But at least they're paid for their loss and displacement. I don't see the federal government offering to reimburse anybody who has spent their hard earned money on wireless microphone systems? So WTF? It's like telling you, they've just made automobiles, illegal to drive. And you're going to have to walk 3 miles to get to your near mass transit stop. Are ya really going to do what they say, without a fight? I sure as hell wouldn't. But people are wimpy and won't stand up for their rights. People don't care if they get ripped off. That's why we have so much coming in from China. And you can't buy American because there's nothing made in America anymore. There are no factories! There are no steel mills. Yup... we've gotten greener. We cleaned up the US. We are not polluting as bad as we used to. No. Instead, all of our pollution has been outsourced to China. Which is just across the pond from the West Coast of the USA.

    Being mentored by the same guy, who was also a mentor to George Massenburg, used to talk to me about how hard-nosed design Electrical Engineers, used to approach equipment designed for audio. After all, while being a tube guy himself, he was one of the Bell Laboratories engineers, when he was there, in 1948, when Shockley and the other two guys came up with the transistor. Meanwhile my mentor, Thomas M. Bray, in the next laboratory over, created the first practical application for vertical hold for television. Now these guys, they didn't mess around. Greed and budgetary concerns, weren't in there design criteria. They only cared about the betterment of audio. And so what do we have today?

    Chris has indicated that really, as he has observed, nothing much has changed, since nearly the beginning of electrical sound recording. And I fully agree with that. What our fathers and grandfathers came up with is still today, what we compare everything to, or try to emulate in software. The fact that some folks have improved upon what our forefathers came up with, amounts to nothing revolutionary. The biggest change that most of y'all are hearing is the total disembodiment of Transformers, electrolytic capacitors and negative feedback in operational amplifiers. And is that better? Or is that just different?

    A lot of us still love using our over 40-year-old design, JBL 4310/4311/4312's, 4408/4411/4412's. And choosing what kind and type of amplifier, a blues sound, we feel, complements that speaker. As opposed to drive through powered monitors. Like a Capehart/Elektraphonic stereo, in that beautiful cabinet, you stuck in your living room. Yeah baby, that was the crème de la crème for a lot of people. Total junk to me since I was just a kid. Nevertheless, millions were sold. We still get freakin' great recordings. Nothing can stop us. We're triumphant! But I switched to French horn. Another brass instrument. Is it better? Or is it just different?

    It's music we're recording. So work on your technique. It's called practice, practice, practice. Which is the oldest musician joke in the US. But that's really the only way things get better. These guys, all of them, most of them, are not playing on brand-new instruments. No. In fact, it seems that the older the instrument is? The more valuable it becomes. Don't they make them better today? Not really. They only make them differently. I've recorded plenty of cheap IBENEZ, bass guitars that sounded way better, to me, IMHO over some really snazzy and expensive Fender bass guitars. What's that mean? Probably nothing more than a bad choice of pickups? Had they left with what the instrument came with? Those Fender's, probably would have been better sounding? They probably did nothing more than screw up the wiring? But then that's how APHEX, was created. By a mistake.

    So really how your recording sounds and how successful it can become, comes down to nothing more than Dumb Luck.
    Mx. Remy Ann David
     
  10. RemyRAD

    RemyRAD Well-Known Member

    Well this is pretty funny... you posted this before I posted mine.

    "254.1(MHz) and 224.5(MHz) on the receiver and 254.1(MHz) on the microphones." Yeah... that's why they were sitting in the cabinet. They have a wireless transmitter that got broken so the receiver went into the cabin. The wireless microphone/transmitter, was never replaced.

    Then a receiver blew out, was put in the cabinet and never replaced. Then, you get a FREE transmitter! Unfortunately... everything is on the wrong frequencies to work together. Though, sending them back to SHURE, they should be able to replace the crystal controlled, frequencies, to give you a working system.

    Also, these are also not any of the frequencies that we've been talking about. Everything we've been talking about is generally between 600 & 900 Megahertz, today. Of which, these microphones are being used on UHF TV channels, that were not in use. But then again, we used to have UHF TV channels from 14, to 83, then 100, then 125. But then, those UHF frequencies started getting sold off. There are now no longer any TV channels beyond 51. And it appears that the FCC is going to back those off to I believe, 36? Maybe 37? But then the FCC did not pay them millions of dollars of compensatory fees to the TV stations that had to change frequency, change transmitters, change antennas. And now it's happening again. There are still TV channels between 37 and 51 that were formerly above 51. This will ensure the decimation of smaller company owned, independent, UHF TV stations as it becomes financially impossible.

    Plus now... the FCC is actually trying to talk competitive TV stations, in the same market, to perhaps, share the same channel? All these digital broadcasts can accommodate more than a single TV station, on a single frequency. Because AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile and all the rest, want those frequencies for themselves. This really all flies in the face of what the communication act of 1934 was all about. And only Wal-Mart will own the entire RF spectrum. This was done originally to prevent monopolies. We're going back to that.

    Though that terrible worldwide depression in the 1930s, won't happen again in 100 years. I figure, we have the next 10-15 years before history repeats itself based upon greed? And then none of this will matter LOL. People will be far more preoccupied with just surviving.

    The new spectrum allocations are in the UHF frequencies. This is a VHF system. These were the earlier frequencies that were outlawed, earlier. This is when Fire & Police, still dispatched and communicated on VHF frequencies. Today they're all up on the UHF spectrum as well. It's all digital. And though those older VHF frequencies may not be being used for fire/rescue/police, in your area, any longer? That still doesn't make them legal again. The federal law was changed. It hasn't been changed back. I got some wireless microphones I think around 174 MHz? That was the first batch of frequencies to get blown off. So this is nothing new. Though it has become something incredibly complicated, complex, requiring an actual engineer, with an actual expensive, radiofrequency usage analyzers. So you know what frequencies/channels, are in use, in your vicinity.

    So the simple to use radio mic/RF mic/wireless mic, is actually, really, not made anymore, for the average consumer. As they have been, for the past 40+ years. I mean ya have to know what you're looking at on the display of a scientific, radiographic, analyzer. Like everyone knows how to do that, right? Like everybody knows what frequency their cell phone is on, right? Not.

    The FCC didn't care that the new cellular phones in the early 1980s, were interfering with our radio, audio and video equipment. Why should we care if a couple of only 300 foot capable range, wireless microphones, we use? Just don't start complaining when you find out YOU'RE THE ONE BEING INTERFERED WITH. Because your wireless microphone transmitter isn't any good for more than 300 feet of transmitter range. And those cellular and digital transmitters that are now covering every populated area in the world proliferates. You can use your wireless microphones. You'll just never be able to pick them up again.

    Wow, I really went off on that one.
    Mx. Remy Ann David
     
  11. dvdhawk

    dvdhawk Well-Known Member

    Boswell, how would one re-purpose a capsule from an old wireless system? What do you use as the surrogate mic body?
    I have a couple AKG C535 capsules on old defunct wireless mic bodies I'd love to put back into action.
     
  12. paulears

    paulears Well-Known Member

    The front panel model number follows no Shure system I have ever seen, the rear panel has stickers rather than proper screen printing or the Shure style labels, and looking at the front - it is NOT a diversity system at all, just two non-diversity receivers in one box - just a shared enclosure. Shure have never made systems like this. The Beta 87 head has a blue band around it, and Shure never hyphenate the Beta-87 description, it is always printed Beta 87.

    Unscrew the head and see if the mic insert is a small electret element - I bet you find a big dynamic element inside.

    ..... and the final confirmation - they spelled Beta 'Beat', on the manual.

    It's a counterfeit product of something Shure themselves never made - probably costing around $40 from China.

    The product doesn't even have a proper Shure model number. If it works, the local DJ who does cheap wedding might give you something for it - but as a dodgy counterfeit, it's a pretty poor one!
     
  13. DonnyThompson

    DonnyThompson Distinguished Member

    LOL..which could go a long way towards explaining why the previous resident left it in the closet.
     
  14. paulears

    paulears Well-Known Member

    Very few Chinese produced 86's, 87's or Beta versions have a condenser element. I buy lots of Chinese products and one of my suppliers offered me a handheld SM86 for $5 including postage, as a sample. Having got quite a few of these in my own mic box, I thought it might be fun to try one. When it arrived it looked identical - but it was far too light - some kind of weird alloy. I plugged it in and thought it sounded a bit dull and pretty horrible - then I realised the phantom power was not turned on! This was when I discovered the dynamic cartridge inside. Not even a very good one! It would be interesting to see the basket windshield removed!
     
  15. katanaplanet

    katanaplanet Active Member

    Previous owners were chinese lol!!!!
     
  16. dvdhawk

    dvdhawk Well-Known Member

    You beat me to it Paul, there was something 'fishy' about it from the start - but I was willing to concede it might be an import they never sold in the states. But now, the rest of the pictures really scream knock-off. Shure takes great care ensuring uniformity of trademarks, branding, logos, etc., and certainly knows how to spell Beta. Well done.
     

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