How to Choose a Wireless Microphone for Public Speaking

Updated July 12, 2018

If you're conducting a presentation, lecture or any other public speaking engagement in a large conference room or convention hall, you'll need a wireless microphone to help project your voice and enable you to move freely. Here's what to look for when choosing a wireless microphone for your class or speech.

Sample a wireless handheld microphone. A transmitter box eliminates the need for constricting cable. This inexpensive system mic works well for public speaking in smaller rooms.

Select a wireless mic with a body pack. These models, commonly used by entertainers, allow presenters to move freely on the stage. Attach the battery operated pack to your waistband or collar and speak normally.

Consider a lavaliere microphone. You clip it to your lapel or other clothes. If you conduct interviews during your speaking engagement, try this option. A lavaliere microphone helps preventing the "popping" sound exacerbated by many handheld microphones. These lightweight microphones need to be placed 6 inches from your chin for best sound quality, and come with a body pack transmitter.

Look at the variations on body pack transmitter microphones. You can choose from headset mics for speakers who move around a lot and wander into the audience, or clip-on mics that can be mounted on an instrument or piece of furniture for more stationary speakers.

Study the differences between UHF and VHF microphone transmission. Microphones operating on the UHF band (similar to the higher number channels on broadcast television) share that frequency with appliances like cordless phones, so wireless mics tuned to this band tend to drop off more easily. If a wireless mic shares a frequency with the VHF (lower number broadcast television channels) the sound will be clearer when speaking.

Locate a good frequency for your system. Higher priced systems have an automatic select button that will do this for you. Otherwise, you'll need to select the clearest one by checking each available frequency through the transmission box.

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