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Xd-v70 Handheld - Element Rattle

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#1 branhan

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Posted 28 November 2013 - 07:35 AM

Hey folks - long time Line 6 user (PODs, mics), first time poster. I have (2) XD-V70 wireless handheld mic units installed at our church that, until recently, we've used for vocalists, but have recently relegated to "speaking only" (not singing) mics because of an issue I've noticed. About 90% of the time they sound great, but when receiving a higher input level / SPL from the singers, I hear a flutter or rattle from the element. (It is definitely element noise, not interference / static / etc.)

 

Both mics exhibit the same characteristic, so it seems to not just be an issue with one flaky capsule. We record (multitrack) our services and it is even noticeable on the recording. (I can track down a clip if need be.)

Has anyone else experienced this issue with their mics? Did I just get a bad one?

Should I experiment with different capsules? (different Line 6 options, or something else - Heil?) 

Or should I just stick them on ebay and cut my losses?

 

They're well past any kind of return or warrant period. I really want to like these mics, but at this point, I'm kind of bummed.

I even hear the rattle occasionally when someone's speaking into the mic, but it's a bit more tolerable as a speaking mic compared to singing into it. My singers are back to Shure Beta58 wireless (older PGX).

Any advice is appreciated.  


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#2 RonMarton

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Posted 28 November 2013 - 11:25 AM

...Has anyone else experienced this issue with their mics? Did I just get a bad one?

Should I experiment with different capsules? (different Line 6 options, or something else - Heil?)...

 

Well branhan...

 

I'm guessing that you may be experiencing the "over-driven capsule" problem referred to in this discussion http://line6.com/sup...ange-questions/, which also canvasses (and links to) various ways of tackling it.


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#3 branhan

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Posted 28 November 2013 - 12:35 PM

Well branhan...

 

I'm guessing that you may be experiencing the "over-driven capsule" problem referred to in this discussion http://line6.com/sup...ange-questions/, which also canvasses (and links to) various ways of tackling it.

 

Thanks Ron! (Didn't expect a reply on Thanksgiving!) :-) I just listened to that .wav of the "cupped mic" male singer, and what I am hearing is definitely not the same as what is reflected on that clip. That user was definitely experiencing "distortion" / over-drive - but this is a distinct high-pitched rattle or flutter.

The first time I ever noticed it was during a Christmas event where we were doing "winter wonderland" and we did a verse where we whistled the melody (not right on the mic, but a few inches back) - the additional air hitting the capsule from the whistling resulted in a very prominent rattle. (By comparison, I can whistle into my PGX Beta58s with no such rattle.) It's not as bad (duh) singing vs. whistling, and it's not as bad speaking vs. singing. But it's not a clip or distortion. It sounds like the element is not secure.

FWIW, I asked the opinion of a professional sound engineer during a recent installation at the church, and he said it sounded like the element was not handling the SPL. 

Also: my receivers are nowhere near any wifi routers; transmission distance is only about 30-40 feet; and I have not flashed the firmware - the mics are still exactly as they were out of the box. Am I correct that the only way to flash the firmware on my model is to connect via an XD-V75 unit? But I don't see how firmware would make a difference if the issue is indeed (as I suspect) the element...

I guess what I'm really weighing is replacing the capsules vs. just getting rid of the mics and buying some more Shures... but I am willing to explore any options that might provide a fix. I'm rather shocked that it isn't (or doesn't appear to be) a "known issue," since both my mics do it...

 

The other thing I guess I could try is, I have (2) XD-V30s in other parts of the building - I assume those mic heads would be compatible with my v70 transmitters - I could try putting the v30 heads on the v70 handsets and see if they sound the same... My Beta58 heads won't thread onto the v70 transmitters, unfortunately, so that didn't hep as a trouble-shooting step.

Thanks again!


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#4 RonMarton

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Posted 28 November 2013 - 01:17 PM

...Didn't expect a reply on Thanksgiving...

 

No turkey feast for us here in Oz, branhan ! :(   (Our closest equivalent is the 26th January "Australia Day" holiday.)

 

I reckon you're quite rightly surprised at what your capsules are doing.

 

Me too !

 

None of my five (four XD-V70, one XD-V75) exhibit anything like what you've so well described.

 

...Also: my receivers are nowhere near any wifi routers; transmission distance is only about 30-40 feet; and I have not flashed the firmware - the mics are still exactly as they were out of the box. Am I correct that the only way to flash the firmware on my model is to connect via an XD-V75 unit? But I don't see how firmware would make a difference if the issue is indeed (as I suspect) the element...

 

Spot on with all of that, IMHO.

 

I really can not see how any of those things could have a bearing on the problem in question, which (to me) sounds from your description as though it may be a diaphragm hitting its limits of travel. 

 

Other than replacing the capsules, (which would definitely "bum" me as much as it does you) ...have you tried

  1. Using the less sensitive "o5" model in the mic (to eliminate the transmitter's electronics from our "suspect" list, ...er, ...maybe)  and/or
  2. An inexpensive foam windgag, such as this http://www.bhphotovi...Windscreen.html to effect some sort of "rescue" ?

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#5 branhan

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Posted 28 November 2013 - 01:32 PM

Other than replacing the capsules, (which would definitely "bum" me as much as it does you) ...have you tried

  1. Using the less sensitive "o5" model in the mic (to eliminate the transmitter's electronics from our "suspect" list, ...er, ...maybe)  and/or
  2. An inexpensive foam windgag, such as this http://www.bhphotovi...Windscreen.html to effect some sort of "rescue" ?

 

Thanks again, Ron - I don't know why (again, duh!) I've never considered a windscreen! That may be a suitable "rescue" fix I suppose, but it seems like either a fault in my particular units (maybe they got dropped and I just don't know about it!) or a design flaw.

(And FWIW, I do realize that blowing / whistling into a mic doesn't really fall within "intended use"... if it ONLY happened when I whistled into it, I'd let it go, but because it's evident when speaking/singing as well, it's kind of a deal breaker...)

I will try the o5 model. I've always been fond of Audix mics - the OM5 used to be my road warrior vocal mic - but I've always kept it on the b58 model to match my other betas (I have 8 wired and 2 wireless).

I purchased these mics in Dec. of 2011 - not sure if that helps ID them in terms of different iterations of these mics. Maybe mine are early and later models were made better? 

I dig Heil stuff - have a PR20-UT and (2) PR30s (fantastic mics) - so I wouldn't mind trying the PR-22 capsule, although I'd miss the modeling feature a lot... :-(

While we're talking about it: any idea why I can't get my Beta58 heads to fit on my transmitters? (and vice versa) They look like they should work. 


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#6 RonMarton

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Posted 28 November 2013 - 01:49 PM

...And FWIW, I do realize that blowing / whistling into a mic doesn't really fall within "intended use"... 

 

...However, some time ago I did have an entire 32 bar solo break of jazz being whistled into one of mine, (767 model) without any such problems.

 

...I will try the o5 model. I've always been fond of Audix mics - the OM5 used to be my road warrior vocal mic...

 

My inventory of cabled mics features heaps of Audix models ! 

 

...I purchased these mics in Dec. of 2011 - not sure if that helps ID them in terms of different iterations of these mics. Maybe mine are early and later models were made better?...

 

That seems very unlikely as my four XD-V70 handhelds are of a similar vintage, albeit relatively recently upgraded to the latest firmware.

 

I dig Heil stuff...  ...so I wouldn't mind trying the PR-22 capsule, although I'd miss the modeling feature a lot... :-(

 

Me too …and me too !

 

While we're talking about it: any idea why I can't get my Beta58 heads to fit on my transmitters? (and vice versa)...

 

Beats me. I know of many folks happily using the Shure RC version on XD-V handhelds.


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#7 branhan

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Posted 28 November 2013 - 01:49 PM

If flashing the firmware would potentially make a difference, I might consider picking up a used v75 unit... But I don't want to acquire a 3rd unit that I may end up needing to offload if I can't solve the issue. 

If it IS an issue with capsule (i.e. diaphragm travel limits, which makes sense), then I have to weigh out spending $200 a pop on a PR-22 head (or whatever - and now I've got $700 ea. in them!) vs. selling them off at a loss (they were $500 new and seem to be going used for around $300...so my (2), at used prices, would only buy me (1) new Shure). 

Or if I knew a Shure head would fit (since my current ones don't leave me optimistic about compatibility), I guess I'd go for a Beta 58 head at $120 / ea.


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#8 RonMarton

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Posted 28 November 2013 - 01:53 PM

If flashing the firmware would potentially make a difference, I might consider picking up a used v75 unit...

 

I'd say no. I'd be VERY surprised to find that the firmware has anything to do with this issue.


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#9 dboomer

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 08:20 AM

I'm not sure I understand exactly what kind of noise you are hearing.  Is it mechanical?  Can you shake the mic and make it happen?  How do you have the dynamic filter set?



#10 branhan

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Posted 29 November 2013 - 10:24 PM

Ron: Okay, I messed around a little more today. Tried the o5 model: same result. Tried a v30 head on the suspect transmitter: same result. (Also - oddly - I found that I *could* get my Beta58 head to work on my v30, but not on my v70; and the Line 6 heads will not work on my Shure transmitter... but maybe that's another topic for another thread...).

dboomer: thanks for chiming in - I'll take all the help I can get. To answer your questions, no I can't reproduce the sound by shaking the mic. And I'm not sure about the dynamic filter. I will have to check. My guess is it's whatever it defaults to, as I have no recollection of changing anything.
 

Our FOH desk is a Presonus StudioLive, so I captured a few seconds of audio so you can hear what I'm hearing. This is an accurate representation of what I'm hearing out of the speakers as well. (I had to convert the .wav to .mp3 to get it under the 2MB limit, but the artifact I'm dealing with is equally present on either one.) 

Any ideas? Again: I have two identical units in the same space, and they both sound like this.

Attached Files


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#11 dboomer

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Posted 30 November 2013 - 09:43 AM

You may be hearing the dynamic filter working and should try shutting it off to be certain.

Unfortunately mp3 files aren't any help as they have all been processed so there's no way to see what's there. It would also be better with a steady known source(tone). You can email me a 10 meg file ... Dboomer@line6.com

The fact that you could not get a Shure head to work on the V70 but that it did on a V30 is troubling. That makes me suspect mechanical coupling could be the problem. Line6 capsules do not work on Shure wireless so that's not an issue.

You could try putting ink from a sharpie pen on the traces of the V70 capsule and then screwing it back on. If the pogo pins are working correctly they will scrape off the ink in a nice even circle.

#12 branhan

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 10:04 AM

You may be hearing the dynamic filter working and should try shutting it off to be certain.

The fact that you could not get a Shure head to work on the V70 but that it did on a V30 is troubling. That makes me suspect mechanical coupling could be the problem.

 

Okay, gents - several updates...Turned both Environmental filters to Off - same performance issues.

 

You'll be pleased to know I DID eventually get my Beta58 head to work on both transmitters. I tried it on the one with no luck, then got it to work on the other, so I checked the little springy pins - they (one or more) must've been pushed down on the one that wasn't accepting it. Pulled up on the tips a little and then it worked. So we can eliminate that issue (thanks!)

 

However. I had the same rattle / flutter issue with the Beta58 head as with the Line 6 head - so it's not the capsule apparently! (Which is kind of a relief, although now it seems like an even greater enigma.) I spent a good hour last night troubleshooting every possibility I could think of to get rid of that flutter, and the problem persisted. (Again, the Beta heads don't do it on the Shure PGX system.) I tried different channels, messing with the environmental filter on all settings (it was WAY worse on the "Talk" setting), different antenna configurations, etc. Could not get the issue to go away.
 

I tried powering down the two wireless routers that are in the church sanctuary, as well as all other wireless devices, and that didn't improve things either. So since we've ruled out that it's mechanical, seems like that only leaves the possibility that it's environmental...right? Or I guess it could be something on the receiver end instead of the transmitter. I'm about 30' from mic to antenna with no significant obstructions (some bodies).


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#13 branhan

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 10:09 AM

None of my five (four XD-V70, one XD-V75) exhibit anything like what you've so well described.

 

And how's this, to make matters worse...? This morning, we had a terrible time with it dropping in and out. I think I mentioned previously that I had been using it for a vocal mic, but this flutter noise was so intolerable that I switched back to my PGXs, and decided to use the V70 as a speaking mic.

 

When they were singer mics, they were on stands, and we didn't really have dropout issues - but most of the time nobody was holding them. Well, today one of the speakers using the V70 experienced constant dropout issues, and I noticed it occurred every time he grabbed the mic too near the bottom end of the transmitter or "double-fisted" it (i.e. gripped it with two hands). Any time his hand went near the bottom of the mic, it dropped out.

 

So now I *really* don't know what to think. Is this a known issue with these mics? (the dropout problem depending on handling technique) Maybe these units just aren't good for my space, for weird unknown environmental factors that I haven't been able to (and perhaps can't) pinpoint...? Bottom line: I can't justify having a mic that I have to give some a 2 minute tutorial on how to hold the mic properly to keep it from cutting in and out. Unless I can solve these issues once and for all, I think I'm going to have to abandon ship, at least in our main auditorium. 


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#14 dboomer

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 12:09 PM

It's a problem with all wireless mics. If you cover the antenna you no longer have clear line of sight and you will cut your range.

How are your antennas hooked up? Do you have the terminators installed? Are your antennas splayed? How high above head height are they? What version of firmware are you running?

#15 RonMarton

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 02:03 PM

...Any ideas? Again: I have two identical units in the same space, and they both sound like this...

 

Sorry branhan...

 

…But pretty much as Don's already said, all I can make out from your sample is what sounds like a handling "thump" at the head, with some  harshness evident in the sibilant range when "the rockets' red glare" was being patriotically proclaimed in the true spirit of Thanksgiving.  :)

 

The worst artefact to my mind was the bassy wind rumble from the lack of the urethane windshield that would be required for the poor whistling technique that started the sample. :lol:

 

(Experienced whistling performers know to aim their mic upwards and whistle "over and across the top" of their capsules, rather than directly into a mic's diaphragm.)

 

So all I can add to what's already been noted is that further attention to the pogo pins of your beta58 capsule (as Don's suggested and you've subsequently proven) may be all that's required for ongoing successful operation on your XD-V70 handhelds.

 

The fact that you could not get a Shure head to work on the V70 but that it did on a V30 is troubling. That makes me suspect mechanical coupling could be the problem. Line6 capsules do not work on Shure wireless so that's not an issue.

You could try putting ink from a sharpie pen on the traces of the V70 capsule and then screwing it back on. If the pogo pins are working correctly they will scrape off the ink in a nice even circle.

 

Dirt or oxidation on the pins of a Shure "head" could also easily be contributing to the issue at hand, so I'd try VERY CAREFULLY applying a few drops of something like this http://www.amazon.co..._pr_product_top to the base of those pogo pins.

 

My technique for doing that is to first spray the contact cleaner into its lid so as to create a tiny "puddle" of the stuff, from which I then pick up a droplet with the point of a pin in order to deposit it around the base of a given pogo pin.

 

Subsequent and repeated very gently depression of that pogo pin will then carry that minuscule amount of cleaning fluid in to where it can do its job.

 

Having done that, I then finish up by repeating the process with an equally tiny amount of a kerosene based moisture excluding lubricant, such as this http://www.amazon.co.../dp/B0083V8F7I/.

 

As for your RF dropouts, further support of this excellent checklist...

 

...If you cover the antenna you no longer have clear line of sight and you will cut your range.

How are your antennas hooked up? Do you have the terminators installed? Are your antennas splayed? How high above head height are they? What version of firmware are you running?

 

… is the fact that MY four XD-V70 handhelds (and one V75) all regularly operate at ranges of up to one hundred metres, (well over the stated maximum) ...but only when my antennae are deployed according to the guidelines stated here:

 

http://line6.com/dat...h ( Rev B ).pdf

 

 

 

 


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#16 branhan

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 05:35 PM

It's a problem with all wireless mics. If you cover the antenna you no longer have clear line of sight and you will cut your range.

How are your antennas hooked up? Do you have the terminators installed? Are your antennas splayed? How high above head height are they? What version of firmware are you running?

 

I get that wirelesses are susceptible to such issues...but my PGXs don't cut out, no matter how we hold them.

Re: antennas - one unit is chained to the other (per the manual), and that one is running up to the (2) stock rubber antennas on rack panel at the top of the rack. The two are at opposite ends of the rack (widest spread, and angled / splayed). They are about 12-15 ft. above head height depending on whether the speaker is on the platform or the floor. Not sure about my firmware - whatever came on it. I have no means to update it (i.e. it's a V70 and I don't have a V75).


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#17 RonMarton

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 05:55 PM

...Not sure about my firmware - whatever came on it...

 

OK...

 

To my mind that means you're "locked" into the option that I find the better of the two anyway, (as far as this "dropout" problem goes) being the RF1 scheme.

 

It's the one that I find myself using nearly all of the time, with rock-solid, cable-like transparency...

 

…and your antenna orientation also seems "spot on".

 

Which leaves this from Don...

 

...Do you have the terminators installed?...

 

 …and one from me...

 

Are you using the correct "microwave-type" LMR195 coax for ALL of the "daisy chain" antenna wiring with your XD-V systems that operate in the 2.4GHz band ...and most definitely NOT the type of coax that suits your Shure UHF systems ?


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#18 branhan

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 06:43 PM

Are you using the correct "microwave-type" LMR195 coax for ALL of the "daisy chain" and antenna wiring with your XD-V systems that operate in the 2.4GHz band ...and most definitely NOT the type of coax that suits your Shure UHF systems ?

Yes - sorry, thought I'd clarified - all unused antenna jacks have terminators on them.

I'm not sure about the cables - I will try to figure that out. That may well be an additional problem. I didn't even realize there was a difference between the digital and uhf worlds when it comes to antenna cabling! Ya learn something new every day! Although... I did still have the "flutter" issue even with the antennas plugged straight into the unit with no extensions. But most of my troubleshooting before our service this morning was just trying to figure out the flutter/capsule issue, not the signal dropout issue.

Please don't read too much frustration (and certainly not antagonism) into any of this. I really want to like these mics - when I get a good strong signal, they sound great. But I'm sure you can see my disappointment when what I've been using up to this point haven't given me anything like the issues I'm experiencing at present!

Thanks, both of you, for all your help. I really appreciate it.


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#19 RonMarton

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 07:17 PM

...all unused antenna jacks have terminators on them...

 

AAH…    

 

...HA ! ! !  :lol: 

 

We might just have hit on another source of your problems. Those terminators simply have a resistor inside that's connected between the centre pin and the outside contact.

 

Only ONE set must be used to "terminate" the very END of our "daisy chain", otherwise our "chain" or "RF pipe" effectively has an infinite resistance (God's own air) at it's far end, which acts like a plumber's "end cap" in causing the varying waves to be "slapped" back up the pipe, smashing our beautifully shaped waveforms into unrecognisable bits. (Digital pun intended.)

 

Putting more of those resistors higher up that "daisy chain" causes another type of equally nasty disruption, acting rather like a random "pinching" of our "RF pipe".

 

So with those "extra upstream" impedances removed...

 

(assuming the short "jumper" cables that make our XD-V "daisy chain" did come out of Line 6 XD-V boxes)

 

…and the need to clearly differentiate between our occasional antenna extenders as being "for UHF" or "for XD-V"...

 

…we may have finally "cracked it".   


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#20 branhan

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 07:42 PM

AAH…    

 

...HA ! ! !  :lol: 

 

We might just have hit on another source of your problems. Those terminators simply have a resistor inside that's connected between the centre pin and the outside contact.

 

Only ONE set must be used to "terminate" the very END of our "daisy chain", otherwise our "chain" or "RF pipe" effectively has an infinite resistance (God's own air) at it's far end, which acts like a plumber's "end cap" in causing the varying waves to be "slapped" back up the pipe, smashing our beautifully shaped waveforms into unrecognisable bits. (Digital pun intended.)

 

Putting more of those resistors higher up our "daisy chain" causes another type of disruption, acting rather like a random "pinching" of our "RF pipe".

 

So with those removed...

 

(assuming the short "jumper" cables that make our XD-V "daisy chain" did come out of Line 6 XD-V boxes)

 

…and the need to clearly differentiate between our occasional antenna extenders as being "for UHF" or "for XD-V"...

 

…we may have finally "cracked it".   

 

I have two units. The first is going "out" to the second one's "ins"; the first has terminators on it's "ins"; the second one is going "out" via the extensions (which, as I said, may be the wrong cable type - the daisy chains are the ones that came with the mics - the extensions up to the antenna strip may not be) to the antenna strip at the top of the rack. So, am I doing something wrong?  


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