Shure Wireless Buying Guide: Which System Is Right for Me?

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One of the most recognized names in audio, Shure has earned its wireless pedigree by providing dependable performance and high-quality wireless sound for performers, instructors, clergy, presenters, DJs, and musicians at every level. There are a variety of analog and digital systems to choose from, all available with popular Shure handheld mics or with bodypacks that can accommodate lavalier, headset, and instruments mics, as well as guitar cables.

Three things you must know if you want to go wireless: What am I doing? Where am I doing it? How many microphones will I need in the same room at once? Let's look at this system-by-system guide and find out which is right for you, starting with analog versus digital.

Basic Analog vs Basic Digital vs Advanced Digital

Basic Analog
—from $299

BLX & SLX Systems


  • High-quality compressed analog audio
  • Enable large number of microphones operating in the same room (42+)
  • Longer operating range (300')
  • Require manual adjustments in case of RF interference
  • Possible interference from TV channels
  • No latency
  • Limited selection of fixed and interchangeable Shure mic capsules

See Basic Analog Systems section.

Basic Digital
—from $349

PGX-D & GLX-D Systems


  • Clear and accurate uncompressed digital audio
  • Limited number of mics operating in the same room (4-5)
  • Shorter operating range (200')
  • Automatic RF interference detection & avoidance (with GLX-D)
  • Operate in the 2.4 GHz band (available worldwide) or 900 MHz band, free from TV-channel interference
  • Longer battery life
  • Offer a variety of recharging options
  • Ultra-low latency
  • Limited selection of fixed and interchangeable Shure mic capsules

See Basic Digital Systems section.

Advanced Digital
—from $999

QLX-D, ULX-D & Axient Digital Systems


  • Pristine digital audio clarity for uncompromising sound
  • Mission-critical reliability
  • Scalability for large mic counts (60+)
  • Longest operating range (300'+)
  • Automatic RF interference detection & avoidance
  • Automatic frequency coordination across multiple receivers via Ethernet
  • Frequency Diversity for additional interference avoidance
  • Automatic transmitter gain adjustments
  • Networked intelligent battery charging, longest battery life
  • System control and monitoring via Wireless Workbench software
  • Dante digital audio
  • Encryption for security
  • No discernable latency
  • Rugged metal construction
  • Quad and dual receivers
  • Full selection of Shure interchangeable mic capsules

See Advanced Digital Systems section.

 

Basic Analog Systems

BLX—Shure Quality at an Affordable Price for Basic Setups: $299

BLX4 and BLX88 systems are throw-it-in-your-backpack wireless mic systems with portable receivers, great for getting around quickly. The BLX88 is the two-channel version of the BLX4.

Best for: Small touring applications, classrooms, office meetings, or fitness instructors on the go. Meetings with two speakers, musician duo, or mobile DJs doing weddings using two mics.

The BLX4R system is designed to be rack-mounted for transport and on-site installations. Antennas can be positioned remotely for better reception, with a full 300-foot operating range.

Best for: Small venues, events, office presentations, small congregations, school theaters, karaoke bars, gigging musicians, training, and teaching.

The BLX analog system provides a cost-effective entry point to Shure's renowned audio quality and is available with a choice of three different receivers. Shure's Audio Reference Companding technology delivers clear sound with low noise. The system offers easy setup, intuitive operation, and dependable performance, right out of the box.

BLX System

  • Run up to 12 mics per frequency band with a maximum of 23 mics in the room at the same time
  • Manual receiver/transmitter sync
  • Transmitters with 10mW of RF power
  • 14 hours on two AA batteries
  • Battery-status LED only
  • Bodypack On/Off toggle switch operates by feel
  • Three handheld transmitter options with fixed mic capsules: PG58, Beta 58A, and the legendary SM58
  • Transmitters with plastic construction

BLX4 and BLX88 Receivers Only

  • No external antennas
  • Compact, lightweight plastic construction

BLX4R Receiver Only

  • Removable antennas
  • All-metal rackmount construction

SLX—Clear and Reliable Performance with More Mics Running at Once: $599

Best for: Installations in houses of worship, small- to midsize theaters, and other venues that demand a higher mic count for the band, actors, and congregation leaders. Corporate meetings and panels in hotels, offices, and conference spaces, touring DJs, lecturers, and musicians.

The SLX rackmount analog system also features Audio Reference Companding for clear sound and a 300-foot operating range, but offers more expanded capabilities than the BLX. Predictive Diversity reception, with more frequencies to choose from, ensures more reliable transmission. Shure's Audio Reference Companding technology delivers clearer sound with less noise. The handheld transmitters feature an interchangeable capsule design for more mic options. SLX receivers are also compatible with a variety of gooseneck and boundary mics, great for lecterns, panel discussions, or small seminars.

SLX System

  • Run up to 12 mics per frequency band with a maximum of 42 mics in the room at the same time
  • Automatic receiver/transmitter sync
  • Transmitters with 30mW of RF power for more reliability
  • Adjustable output gain on receiver
  • 8 hours on two AA batteries
  • Battery meter shows remaining run time
  • Interchangeable capsule design: Beta 58A, Beta 87A, Beta 87C, SM86, and the beloved SM58
  • Wireless MX890 gooseneck base and MX690 boundary mics
  • Transmitters with plastic construction
  • All-metal rackmount receiver

Basic Digital Systems

PGX-D—Best Reproduction of Your Sound at an Affordable Price: $349

Best for: Small venues, houses of worship, weddings, and events, on-the-go solo musicians, mobile DJs, lecturers, fitness instructors, classrooms, office meetings, and presentations.

The PGX-D digital system gives you the clarity of uncompressed digital audio, along with simple setup, intuitive operation, and dependable performance, all at a friendly price. It operates in the 900 MHz frequency band, free from signal interference caused by nearby TV, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth devices, with a maximum range of up to 200 feet.

PGX-D System

  • Run up to 5 mics in the room at the same time
  • Automatic receiver/transmitter sync
  • True digital diversity reception: Combines two discrete RF signals from both antennas for fewer dropouts
  • 10 hours on two AA batteries
  • Battery-status LED only
  • Interchangeable capsule design: PG58, Beta 58A, SM86, and the ever-popular SM58
  • Fixed external antennas
  • Lightweight plastic construction

GLX-D / GLX-D Advanced—Reliable Performance from Shure's Easiest-to-Use Wireless System: from $499 / $599

The GLX-D Advanced is the more sophisticated system of the two. It comes with the GLXD4R designed to be rack-mounted for transport and on-site installations. Removable antennas allow for improved RF performance and more mics at once.

Best for: Small-sized music venues, clubs, houses of worship, schools, gigging bands, office presentations, and small events.

The GLX-D is a portable system for peripatetic musicians and performers. Two types of receivers are available.

The GLXD4 receiver is a lightweight, streamlined receiver that's ready to travel.

Best for: Solo and small-ensemble musicians, performers in intimate settings.

The GLXD6 is a rugged receiver that mounts on and is powered by a guitar pedalboard. Includes built-in chromatic tuner.

Best for: Guitar and bass players in small- to midsize venues.

GLX-D combines digital audio clarity with automatic frequency management and intelligent rechargeability in a system that's ready to go as soon as you power it up—no setup necessary. This remarkably flexible system is available with a choice of three different receivers. It operates in the 2.4 GHz frequency band, free from signal interference caused by nearby TV, with a maximum range up to 200 feet. (For optimal results, use of the GLX-D is recommended in environments with limited Wi-Fi / 2.4 GHz traffic). The system scans continuously for open frequencies and switches seamlessly before dropouts can stall the show.

GLX-D / GLX-D Advanced Systems

  • Fully automatic setup upon powering up
  • No receiver/transmitter sync required
  • Transmitter and receiver automatically jump to new clean frequency when interference occurs
  • True digital diversity reception: Combines two discrete RF signals from both antennas for fewer dropouts
  • Adjust the transmitter's audio level remotely from the receiver
  • Bodypack On/Off toggle switch operates by feel
  • 16 hours on Shure rechargeable battery
  • Receiver's LCD screen shows transmitter's battery run time in hours and minutes.
  • Four handheld transmitter options with fixed mic capsules: Beta 58A, Beta 87A, SM86, and the revered SM58
  • Transmitters with plastic construction

GLXD4R Advanced Receiver Only

  • Run up to 11 mics in the room at the same time with Frequency Manager unit (available separately)
  • Removable antennas
  • All-metal rackmount construction

GLXD4 Receiver Only

  • Run up to 8 mics in the room at the same time
  • Fixed antennas
  • Compact, lightweight plastic construction

GLXD6 Pedalboard Receiver Only

  • Run up to 8 mics in the room at the same time
  • All-metal construction for pedalboard

Advanced Digital Systems

ULX-D / QLX-D—Clear Audio, Rock-Solid Wireless, Networked Control & Recharging: from $999 / $1,349

The ULX-D is the high-end option and includes many features specifically designed for complex applications and larger live events.

Best for: Large-scale installations in universities, convention and corporate centers, across multiple facilities, touring productions, theater, broadcast studios, multi-system houses of worship.

QLX-D is designed for applications where the requirements are less complex, but gives the user optimal results with a streamlined feature set.

Best for: Professional live events and musical stage, installations in houses of worship, schools, hotels, or medium- to large-sized conference facilities.

ULX-D and QLX-D digital systems are primarily designed for advanced users who demand rock-solid wireless performance in high-profile live and installed setups. Both systems have identical audio performance with remarkably clear and accurate 24-bit/48 kHz digital audio. They also come with powerful network and rechargeability features that make complicated setups with multiple mics much easier to manage. The ULX-D offers additional RF flexibility and Dante networking. All ULX-D and QLX-D receivers are compatible with a variety of gooseneck and boundary mics, great for lecterns, panel discussions, or seminars.

QLX-D and ULX-D Systems

  • Simultaneously run up to 60 mics per frequency band
  • Auto gain-ranging adjusts mic level to avoid clipping
  • Network Scan finds clean frequencies across multiple receivers
  • Automatic frequency coordination and interference avoidance
  • AES 256-bit encryption for secure transmission
  • Intelligent power options with dockable receivers for recharging batteries
  • Accurate battery run time monitoring in hours and minutes
  • Remote monitoring and control via Workbench software or iOS device
  • Rugged all-metal construction
  • Single-channel half-rack receiver
  • Wide selection of interchangeable microphone capsules: Beta 58A, Beta 87A, SM86, SM87A, Beta 87C, KSM8, KSM9, KSM9HS, VP68, and SM58
  • Compatible with ULX-D boundary and gooseneck transmitters/mics

ULX-D Only

  • High Density mode: Simultaneously run up to 90 mics per frequency band
  • Frequency Diversity uses two discrete bodypacks on a single person for backup
  • Dante digital audio networking
  • Antenna cascade ports for advanced antenna options
  • Additional dual- and quad-channel full-rack receivers

Battery Runtimes

  • QLX-D Battery Life: 9-hour AA batteries / 10-hour SB900A rechargeable pack
  • ULX-D Battery Life: 8-hour AA batteries / 9-hour SB900A rechargeable pack
 

Axient Digital—Pristine Audio for Mission-Critical Applications with Zero Tolerance for Failure: From $2,389 per channel

Best for: Stadiums, half-time performances, Broadway shows, large houses of worship, university campuses, convention centers, major corporate meetings, and top-tier broadcast facilities.

Axient Digital delivers top-tier wireless performance and reliability for mission-critical applications, where failure is simply not an option—period. This scalable system offers superior audio quality with AES3 support, comprehensive RF spectrum management with ShowLink, Dante network capabilities, advanced rechargeability options, and extensive control via software. Axient Digital gives engineers and talent greater confidence when performing in world-class venues with complex stage setups.

Axient Digital System

  • Ultrawide 166 MHz tuning bandwidth
  • True Digital Diversity reception combines two discrete RF signals per receiver channel
  • Simultaneously run up to 120 mics
  • High-Density mode: Up to 47 active transmitters per 6 MHz TV channel
  • Automatic frequency coordination assigns the cleanest frequencies across multiple receivers
  • Interference detection and avoidance for seamless operation
  • Ethernet networking enables real-time precision monitoring and control of your system via Workbench software or iOS device
  • Networked intelligent power-management system with reliable smart lithium-ion rechargeable batteries
  • Accurate battery run time monitoring in hours and minutes
  • Battery Life: 9-hour AA batteries / 8-hour SB900A rechargeable pack
  • Dante digital audio networking
  • Auto gain-ranging adjusts mic level to avoid clipping
  • Frequency Diversity uses two independent frequencies for backup using two discrete bodypacks or an ADX2FD Frequency Diversity handheld transmitter
  • ShowLink wireless control option for real-time remote adjustment to ADX transmitters
  • XLR analog outputs + AES3 and AES67/Dante digital outputs
  • AES 256-bit encryption for secure transmission
  • Headphone monitoring
  • Ultra-low latency
  • Antenna cascade ports
  • Ultra-Compact ADX1M Micro Bodypack Transmitter
  • Full selection of microphone capsules
  • Dual- and quad-channel full-rack receivers
  • Rugged all-metal construction
  • Wide selection of interchangeable microphone capsules: Beta 58A, Beta 87A, SM86, SM87A, Beta 87C, KSM8, KSM9, KSM9HS, VP68, and SM58

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