We get this question a lot, and thankfully, we found some information from Shure that neatly summarizes the facts and confirms our suspicions about audio quality. The following article is a Tech Tep from the Shure Applications Engineering team.
Typical Applications for QLX-D - corporate events, live music, higher education campuses, houses of worship, hotels, conference centers. For a corporate installation, consider QLX-D if all the receivers are on the same floor and/or use the same Ethernet network. For live music, consider QLX-D for a small or medium-size concert hall.
Key Differences between QLX-D and ULX-D
In terms of audio quality, reliability, and RF performance, QLX-D and ULX-D are the same. The primary differences are network sophistication and RF flexibility.
Let's begin with network sophistication. If a third-party control device is used, like AMX or Crestron, then a console is employed to control projectors, lights, mixers, et al. If the control system needs to access devices across subnets, then ULX-D is required. What does "across subnets" mean? It means across multiple networks, such as two building floors - each on a separate network. QLX-D can only communicate within the same subnet, e.g., one network on one floor.
The ULX-D series offers dual and quad receivers with audio summing, Dante™ digital audio networking, and dual Ethernet ports. QLX-D does not have these features.
ULX-D receivers have a flexible user interface and panel display. Without having to consult the user guide, all parameters, like IP address, subnet mask, and gateways, can be altered. The QLX-D panel display is simplified. To change the IP address and subnet mask, a user guide is likely required. Also, with QLX-D, the communication gateway cannot be changed; this is why the control string will not communicate across subnets.
QLX-D transmitters have two RF power levels: 1mW and 10mW (milliWatt.) ULX-D transmitters have three RF power levels: 1mW, 10mW, and 20mW. The higher 20mW setting can prove useful in tough RF environments.
ULX-D offers "High-Density Mode" that is not available with QLX-D. High-Density Mode permits ULX-D to operate up to 47 channels in a 6 MHz U.S. TV channel. This Mode is useful when operating a large-scale corporate conference with a central location and numerous break-out rooms within a confined area. In this scenario, ULX-D is the ideal choice.
QLX-D: Easy to set-up and Rechargeable
QLX-D is designed for quick and easy set-up. To perform a Scan on a single receiver and find a compatible channel, the user needs only to press a button two times: MENU...ENTER...and done. This takes three seconds; the QLX-D receiver makes the RF decisions for the user.
QLX-D Network Scan allows a user to coordinate up to 60 RF channels in 15 seconds. This is useful for live performance applications as the RF environment often changes right before show time because of security personnel, TV news crews, and others who were not present during rehearsal.
A QLX-D transmitter requires two AA alkaline cells or the Shure SB900 Shure Lithium-ion Rechargeable Battery Pack. The SB900 may be charged any time as it has no "memory effect." There several charging options: 1) an eight-bay charger, 2) a single-battery USB charger, and 3) a dual docking station that will charge a QLX-D transmitter with the SB900 installed.
The SB900 charges quickly - fifteen minutes of charging provides an hour of use. One hour of charging provides five hours of operation. Three hours is required for the full charge of ten operational hours. Two AA alkaline cells give nine hours of use - a welcomed feature if the SB900 battery is in need of a charge.
Besides the longer run-time and the long-term cost savings, the SB900 has another advantage over AA cells. Using the SB900, the QLX-D receiver displays remaining run-time in hours and minutes with an accuracy window of fifteen minutes. With AA cells, there's a five-bar "fuel remaining" display.
RF Spectrum Efficiency
In the United States, the QLX-D has a 64 MHz tuning bandwidth. In that bandwidth there 67 preset compatible channels. With QLX-D, 17 channels will operate in the space of 6 MHz (one TV channel).
Encryption of the RF Signal
QLX-D offers AES-256 signal encryption. This is essential for many corporate settings and nearly all government venues. AES-256 encryption has been around for over a decade. It is the highest level of encryption available for public use. The National Institute of Standards and Technology has validated the encryption technology used in QLX-D and ULX-D.
For more information and pricing on ULX-D, please click here. For more information and pricing on QLX-D, please click here. Call us for pricing. QLX-D is less expensive that ULX-D.