SBE urges commission to mitigate wireless mic spectrum shortage

September 2, 2005

The Society of Broadcast Engineers filed comments with the FCC July 29 requesting that the majority of spectrum freed up from the surrender of certain 2GHz Mobile Satellite Spectrum be returned to broadcasters.

Specifically, the society is asking the FCC to permit 12MHz of the 40MHz surrendered to be used for Part 74 Broadcast Auxiliary Services (BAS), Subpart H, Low Power Auxiliary applications like wireless microphones and other low-power devices.

The society filed comments responding to a June 29 commission notice that Boeing, Celsat America and Iridium had surrendered all of their MSS authorizations at 2000MHz to 2200MHz and 2180MHz to 2200MHz.

More than 10 years ago, the commission transferred 35MHz of 2GHz TV BAS spectrum from broadcasters, and that “re-allocation has not yet resulted in productive use for this spectrum,” the filing said.

In the filing, the SBE pointed out that wireless mics typically were operated on unused VHF and UHF TV channels. However, 1600 allocations of second TV channels to full-service stations for DTV service, Class A TV station assignments and the loss of 108MHz of spectrum at TV channels 52 through 69 has made it “impossible” to find frequencies for wireless mic operation in major metropolitan areas. Reallocating the 12MHz spectrum as the SBE proposes would help, the filing said.

For more information, visit www.sbe.org.

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