TWO-WAY RADIO OR INTERCOM SYSTEM?
A pair of walkie-talkie two-way radios provide a half duplex system in which only one party at a time can talk, while the other listens until it can hear an opportunity to transmit. The number of radio users on one channel are unlimited. The transmission medium (the radio signal over the air) can carry information in only one direction. This option requires the user to push to talk PTT or use voice activation VOX.
Your choice of radio frequency (VHF or UHF) may be decided by the environment the production’s working in.
UHF (Ultra High Frequency) uses short waves and is ideal for penetrating buildings or densely wooded or hilly areas. They are great for indoor use, but can also be used outdoors, and the use of a high gain antenna will increase their power.
VHF (Very High Frequency) uses longer waves and are better suited to environments where there are less obstructions. They are ideal for use on water, in open fields or in landscaped areas with few obstructions. They are also considered to have a longer range and are more popular in mountain environments.
Two-Way radios communicate radio to radio unless programmed to run through a repeater system for long distances. Frequencies (MHz) are not 100 percent private to your selected party unless unless set up on a city wide trunking system. Both these rental options are available at Wi-Com Solutions if required.
Once VHF or UHF is determined, the rental provider will determine which frequency (MHz) should be used for each channel required. This will be determined by researching what is most available in your production area.
Intercom headsets are full duplex. This system, sometimes referred to as double-duplex is a communication system that allows communication for both directions, simultaneously. This option allows the user to either push to talk or be completely hands free and communicate openly.
Intercom systems typically have less range then a two way radio, don’t allow as many users, and have limited channels. Distance between users can increase if base station is placed in middle of production.
Full duplex systems are ideal for situations that require instant, hands free communication such as live broadcast. A typical set up would be a director that needs to communicated with camera operators and event coordinators while being hands free and allowing an open conversation.
When reaching out to a rental company, they should be asking you: WHERE IS YOUR PRODUCTION LOCATION? WHAT ARE YOUR COMMUNICATION GOALS? WHAT IS THE DISTANCE BETWEEN USERS? HOW MANY USERS ARE ON SET AND HOW MANY CHANNELS DO YOU REQUIRE? WHAT OTHER FREQUENCIES ARE BEING USED ON SET SUCH AS AUDIO, DRONES, REMOTES, ECT.