What Pastors Need to Consider: Looming RF Spectrum Changes

The Mt. Vesuvius effect relates to impending changes regarding usage of the RF spectrum. Changes that will affect wireless transmission, including wireless mics worn by vocalists and pastors. Here's what you need to know.

Karl Winkler  ·  May 4, 2017

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First let’s take a look back to better understand how to procede.

Way back in ’79… 79 AD that is, when some of our industry veterans were just getting started, Mt. Vesuvius erupted, completely destroying the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum and killing an estimated 16,000 people in the process.

No doubt you’ve read about this in history class or seen a documentary about it.

What you may not know is that Vesuvius had erupted several times before, including several larger ones such as in 1,800 BC where several bronze age settlements were wiped out. Minor eruptions happen every few decades or centuries and continue to this day.

And yet, today an estimated 3 Million people live within the potential kill radius of this dangerous volcano, despite the fact that it will have a major eruption again someday.

How is this possible? I call it the Vesuvius Effect, or “It can’t Happen to Me.” It is part of our human nature, apparently.

Replacing Worn/Obsolete Equipment

I recently received a call from an integrator looking to find a way to continue using old software with old hardware. As he described it, “the hardware still works fine, but we can’t get the software to run any more.”

This was equipment we stopped making at Lectrosonics more than 10 years ago and had supported up until a few years ago when the whole 32/64 bit transition came around. After that, it became very daunting to continue support due to the USB driver problems and other software issues.

The only way to keep this particular customer’s gear running would be to keep an old PC around running an old OS. And we all know that just recently, Windows XP was dropped from support by Microsoft.

Even still, I felt for him and his customer because this has happened to all of us: perfectly good hardware becomes obsolete when it can no longer be updated, accessed, set up, controlled, or monitored.

What I couldn’t understand, though, was why they had not budgeted for hardware upgrades on a reasonable time frame. As we all know, most hardware today runs on software, and software requires fairly constant updating for minor issues. Then, every few years, a major update is required. As pointed out above, sometimes there is a major shift or external change that causes a whole class of devices to be rendered obsolete.

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