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APWPT microphone frequency information

Current status

Wireless audio devices operate under a „Class Licence“, meaning that no special ap-provals or licence is required to operate equipment that meets the following fre-quency and power specs.

* Use of free frequencies (no approval needed) from 174 - 230 MHz, (max. e.i.r.p. 3 mW)

* Use of free frequencies (no approval needed) between 520 - 694 MHz, (max e.i.r.p. 100mW)

* Use of free frequencies (no approval needed) between 1785 - 1800 MHz, (max e.i.r.p. 100mW)

Operation on the frequencies shown above is as a secondary service, sharing with DTV transmission, on the basis that you do not operate outdoors on the same frequency as a DTV service licenced in the location, and that you operate on a “no interference – no protection” basis.

Application can be made to operate outdoors on the same frequency as a DTV service licenced in the location for special events.

Note that DTV channels are allocated on a “Block Planning” approach in Australia, with 6 consecutive channels, each 7 MHz wide, allocated to each DTV market. This means that in any location there will be at least one complete block of 42 MHz fully occupied by DTV transmission. In some locations more than 1 Block is in use – refer to for up to date information about VHF & UHF DTV frequency allocation in any area of Australia.

Approval can be requested to operate on higher power levels within these bands for defined “Special Events”.


One can download this information here: Frequencies for wireless microphones [997 KB]

Typical national spectrum use

Australian wireless microphone operations endangered by IMT companies (September 2014)
Information provided by the Australian APWPT Ambassador:

Last week Telstra switched on their new 700 MHz services in a number of areas across three states of Australia, including Sydney CBD and Adelaide CBD.
Telstra and Optus negotiated “Early Access” arrangements with the ACMA earlier this year. In August they both communicated their plans to switch on “trials” in Perth CBD, Darwin CBD, Fremantle, Mildura, Mount Isa and Griffith, during August 2014.
Without further notice to the wireless audio industry though, Telstra switched on their 700 MHz networks in Adelaide CBD, Sydney CBD, Yamba, Sarina, Esperance and Bundaberg last week. No dates have been announced yet for Telstra sites at Ulladulla, Townsville, Mt. Gambier, Murray Bridge, Tennant Creek, Roma, Red Cliffs (VIC), Narrawallee, Miles, Marble Bar, Port Hedland, Katherine, Goondiwindi, Fitzroy Crossing or Denmark (WA).
Optus have advised that they plan to switch on trials of their 700 MHz network in the next two weeks with details of exact locations yet to be forthcoming.
Telstra services are operating on 713 to 733 MHz for the phones and 768 to 788 MHz for the towers. Optus services operate on 703 to 713 for the phones and 758 to 768 MHz for the towers.
All wireless audio users are advised to carefully monitor their RF landscape to minimise the potential impact of the Telco’s early access to this spectrum.

Further information can be found at the following web sites:

1) Telstra 4G Technology Trials on the 700MHz radiofrequency band

2) Optus 4G 700 MHZ Commercial Pilot and Technical Trials

3) Digital Dividend is TODAY, not January 1, 2015

4) The Digital Dividend and changes to regulation to wireless microphone


Australian Communications and Media Authority (February 2014)

New arrangements for wireless microphones is available here.


ACMA media release on wireless microphones in the digital dividend frequencies (June 2013)

Some technical changes affecting manufacturers and importers

The Australian Communications and Media Authority recently announced changes to the frequency ranges that can be used for wireless audio transmitters. The proposals in the discussion paper are but the next step in the ACMA’s on-going support of the transition of wireless audio transmitters from the digital dividend frequencies by 31 December 2014.

A discussion paper is now available [Word | PDF] for submissions to proposed regulatory changes to address the supply of wireless audio transmitters, including wireless microphones that operate in the digital dividend frequencies (694 – 820 MHz).

The ACMA encourages all interested parties to make a submission to the paper before 9 July 2013.
Get further information at ACMA hompage


ACMA Media Release on Changes to Wireless Microphone Arrangements (May 2013)

ACMA media release 28/2013 – 13 May

New arrangements for wireless microphones

The Australian Communications and Media Authority today announced changes to frequency ranges used for wireless microphones. The changes are a key plank in supporting the transition of wireless microphones from the digital dividend band...

..The changes made are arrangements for wireless audio transmitters in the Radiocommunications (Low Interference Potential Devices) Class Licence 2000.

The changes to the class licence: mean that after 31 December 2014, wireless audio transmitters (including wireless microphones) will no longer be authorised to operate in the frequency range 694-820 MHz (the digital dividend band) introduce new arrangements supporting the use of digital wireless audio transmitters in the frequency range 520-694 MHz introduce new arrangements supporting the use of wireless audio transmitters operating in the frequency range 1790-1800 MHz. As a corollary, the ACMA will be working to update its standards’ arrangements to restrict the supply of wireless microphones that operate in the digital dividend (694-820 MHz).

‘The dialogue with the Australian Wireless Audio Group (AWAG) and its industry forum has been collaborative and iterative. I want to encourage industry to continue to engage as we transition to these new arrangements,’ Mr Chapman said.
A copy of the Radiocommunications (Low Interference Potential Devices) Class Licence 2000 is available on the ComLaw website. The ACMA website also provides a range of useful material for potentially affected users.

Get further information at ACMA hompage

Refer also: Radiocommunications (Low Interference Potential Devices) Class Licence Variation Notice 2013


(March 2012)

Australian Radiofrequency Spectrum Plan

Australian Allocation of the 700 MHz (digital dividend) and 2.5 GHz bands:
(July 2011)

In the 700 MHz band are in fokus the frequencies 703–748 and 758–803 MHz.

We found on the ACMA Homepage:

The ACMA is now in the process of allocating spectrum in the 700 MHz and 2.5 GHz bands.

The decision to allocate the 700 MHz (or digital dividend) band comes after the Australian Government directed the ACMA in July 2010 to clear 126 MHz of digital dividend spectrum (694–820 MHz) and reallocate this spectrum for new uses.

The allocation of spectrum in the 2.5 GHz band follows an extensive review undertaken by the ACMA during 2010, namely the 2.5 GHz band review. This review recommended the reallocation of 2.5 GHz band spectrum for new uses, especially wireless communications services.

The ACMA is now proceeding with the reallocation of spectrum in the 700 MHz and 2.5 GHz band with the intention of allocating both bands in a single auction process. The auction is expected to be held by the end of 2012.

Get more details here

Read also: Long-term arrangements for ENG


Status of the Digital Dividend in Australia
(22nd February 2010)

In Australia the UHF spectrum can be used for PMSE (Program Making and Special Events, wireless production tools such like wireless mics and In-Ear systems) in the range of 526 – 820 MHz. The vast majority of wireless productions take place in the range of 784 – 820 MHz.

The Australian Government has published the Digital Dividend Green Paper in January 2010 to maximise the benefit of the Digital Dividend. This paper identifies the spectrum from 694 – 820 MHz for new services.

This 126 MHz of spectrum represent 42% of the total available spectrum in the UHF range. If the plans of the Australian Government become true there will remain the spectrum 526 – 694, a total of 168 MHz.

The main activities in the UHF range are in urban centres and as boosters within the capital city areas: there are more terrestrial TV programs available than in the countryside as more customers can be contacted easily. In urban centres are the majority of cultural activities: theatres, musical, operas, clubs, bars, open airs, but also conference centres, courts and parliaments, meetings and presentations, hotels with their activities and all the TV productions, interviews etc.

All these activities until today could operate interference free as there was always enough spectrum to run all in parallel – often with sophisticated planning in order not to interfere with the primary user of the spectrum: the broadcasters.

With loss of 42% of the spectrum and the expected increasing amount of terrestrial TV activities there will not be enough spectrum left available to run all in parallel: services will have to be reduced otherwise interference noise will bother the spectators.

Impossible will be the known and appreciated detailed reporting from events of national interest such like national celebrations, political meetings, states visits, sports-championships, Olympics.
Who will make the decision which foreign reporting gets a license to use wireless and which not?

To overcome the shortage of spectrum in the UHF range a certain range has to be reserved for wireless production tools and new frequency range must be opened to secure the long term needs of this steadily growing application.

In Australia, major equipment suppliers and the Australian Music Association (which represents end user groups) have combined to form the Australian Wireless Audio Group (AWAG). Syntec, the Sennheiser representative, and Jands, the Shure representative, as part of AWAG, are heavily involved in trying to care for the interest of PMSE spectrum users, and are working with APWPT in their efforts to ensure spectrum remains available for radio microphone users.

National government address

Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy
GPO Box 2154
Canberra ACT 2601


Contact information:

Present national discussion on PMSE

The Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy have published: (May 2010)

Submissions (on Green Paper consultation) received

The Department will progressively upload the submissions received in response to the digital dividend green paper. Please refer to this page regularly for updates..

Find the submission page here (bottom of page)


The Department of Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy have published: (January 2010)

Digital Dividend Green Paper

Minister’s foreword:

Free-to-air television broadcasting services currently use radiofrequency spectrum in what is known as the Very High Frequency (VHF) and Ultra High Frequency (UHF) bands. From its beginnings in Sydney in 1956, free-to-air broadcast television has rapidly grown to become a major media distribution in Australia, providing information and entertainment in almost every Australian household.

Some 50 years later both the communications and entertainment landscapes have been transformed. As part of this, we—the users of technology—have made an array of fixed and wireless communication devices an intrinsic part of everyday personal and work life. These devices provide access to a variety of services which entertain, inform and educate us, improve the productivity of our work and business activities and connect us with one another.

We are now on the cusp of converting our free-to-air television services from analog to digital. This process begins this year and will be completed by the end of 2013. It will release a large amount of spectrum—a digital dividend—which will provide us with a once-in-a-generation opportunity to encourage the introduction of new digital services and to improve existing services.

Analog television spectrum in the UHF bands is ‘waterfront property’ because of its ability to carry signals over long distances, penetrate buildings and carry large amounts of data. This spectrum is valuable to potential purchasers, but of far greater benefit are the opportunities it can offer to all Australians by providing new services for individuals and businesses.

Internationally, analog television transmission is being phased out and countries are realising their digital dividends as part of this process. The trend overseas has been to more efficiently use that part of the spectrum designated for broadcasting services by reorganising, or ‘restacking’, these services in order to create a contiguous block of cleared spectrum. This action has expanded the number of potential uses of the cleared spectrum.

The Australian Government has decided that it too will seek to restack spectrum to maximise the digital dividend in line with major developed economies, and has agreed on a set of principles and a target digital dividend of 126 MHz.

The digital dividend can potentially be used to provide a range of new communications services including super-fast mobile broadband. The ability to have high capacity internet access in a range of locations is already proving valuable to users of 3G networks both in Australia and overseas, and this demand will only grow.

However, there is no ‘either/or’ approach in terms of free-to-air digital television and the digital dividend. The Government is committed to ensuring that the high quality free-to-air digital services that Australians enjoy will continue to be provided.

The purpose of this paper is to seek comments on a range of issues that will assist the Government in making a final decision on the size and location of the digital dividend. The Government has already commenced a productive dialogue with stakeholders on these issues, and I encourage all parties with a view to make a submission to this process.

Senator the Hon Stephen Conroy

Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy

Get the document here [256 KB]

See also

Australian Communications Authority (December 2004)


Class Licensed Services in the BSBs

Various non-broadcasting services currently operate under class licences in the BSBs. These services include, for instance, wireless audio and auditory assistance transmitters, transmitters for underground communications, biomedical telemetry transmitters, wireless microphones and satellite downlinks. It is important that such services be taken into account in any replanning of the BSBs.

Get the document here


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