Tech Tuesday – Radio Mic Frequencies in the UK
The available radio mic frequencies in the UK can be broken down into three sections:
1. License exempt frequencies – Available for all, typically used for low power equipment and can be subject to interference (not generally recommended for professionals)
2. Licensed frequencies – Shared frequencies that can be used anywhere in the UK once licensed (the license also covers anyone hiring from the licensee)
3. Co-ordinated frequencies – These are booked through the PMSE portal for specific sites available for the short or long term. They provide the best protection against interference as they are coordinated with Ofcom.
1. License Exempt Frequencies:
- 173.7MHz to 175.1MHz – VHF, you’ll typically be able to use 3 frequencies together, the transmitter power is limited to 10mW (or up to 50mW on body worn packs)
- 863MHz to 865MHz (Channel 70) – Within this range you’ll be able to use 4 frequencies and transmitter power is limited to 10mW (50mW on belt pack transmitters)
- 2.4GHz to 2.483.5GHz – Wifi band, Transmitter power 10mw. This range is used by other devices such as wireless computer networks, smart devices, Bluetooth short-range links etc.
For more info please visit Ofcom – Short Range Devices Info
2. The Licensed Frequencies – ‘Shared License Frequencies’
Below listed are the frequencies available with a license, operating in these frequencies without a license can result in a fine.
- 606 to 614MHz (Channel 38) – Since the DSO (digital switchover) in 2012 channel 38 replaced channel 69
- 823-832MHz – In April 2015 this has been added to the license frequencies
- 1.8GHZ (1785MHz -1805 MHz)* – In April 2015 this has been added to the license frequencies
*Currently not available in Northern Ireland
You will need a license to operate within these frequencies otherwise you risk receiving a fine.
Licenses cost £80 for 1 year, £155 for 2 years. If bought online, they are slightly cheaper – £75 & £135 respectively.
For more information or to apply for a UK license please visit the PMSE site.
3. The Co-ordinated Frequencies
Below listed are the frequencies available that can be coordinated with Ofcom through the Ofcom PMSE portal,
- 470-703MHz – These frequencies are shared with the TV Broadcasting on the basis that there is no impact on household TV reception.
- 960 – 1154MHz* – DME frequencies, these are shared with aeronautical radio navigation and communication systems however Ofcom have made parts available for use by low power PMSE (Programme Making and Special Events) audio with a transmission power of less than 50mW
*Co-ordinated access to spectrum is available in the following bands:
- 961 to 1015 MHz
- 1045 to 1075 MHz
- 1105 to 1154 MHz
To organise usage of these frequencies Ofcom have created the PMSE Portal.
Frequencies outside the UK
Give our friends over at Mission Control a shout. They spend their days planning frequencies for jobs all over the world!
If you are travelling to any of the country’s below, please check the APWPT link – Frequencies for wireless microphones
Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Luxembourg, Malta, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Spain, South Korea, Sweden, Switzerland, United States of America, United Arab Emirates, Ukraine, United Kingdom
For advice on the best equipment and radio mic options to suit your requirements contact our Sales team who can advise – Sales@Raycom.co.uk or 01789 777 040. We will be happy to discuss the different options available to you.
The information provided on this page is correct to the best of our knowledge at the time of writing. We accept no responsibility (including for loss or damage) for your use of the advice on our website. This page is meant as a guide only and wireless microphone users should contact Ofcom for specific advice. Further information can be found on their website www.licensing.ofcom.org.uk.