You cannot achieve good quality vocal reproduction without a good quality microphone. I know it's tempting to use that plastic microphone that came with some game, or the one you saw at the department store for twenty dollars, but I strongly advise against using those with your home karaoke system. Besides, a good quality mic is not that expensive.
Wired vs WirelessThe professional karaoke host MUST use wireless microphones because he/she simply cannot have microphone cables strung around for the customers to trip over. Plus some singers like to stroll around the bar or club while they sing karaoke. But when you are building a home system wireless mics are totally optional for you. A descent wired mic can be purchased in the $80+ price range. No microphone offers more "bang for your buck" than the legendary Shure SM58. Wireless versions are more expensive than like quality wired mics. Wireless mics are subject to interference from various electrical sources and radio frequency traffic. If you insist on going wireless read on for some additional information on them.
UHF vs VHF Wireless MicrophonesA common concern of those shopping for a wireless system is which frequency type is best. The answer depends on your individual situation. There is no big technical advantage between UHF and VHF. The principal advantage of UHF is its broader frequency spectrum which reduces the odds of interference. UHF also is less likely to experience interference from electrical equipment. Like quality UHF microphones are typically more expensive than VHF. For home use, or other stationary applications, VHF microphones would be fine in most cases. If you need to set up in multiple locations, or heavily populated urban areas, then UHF would be the better choice.
True DiversityThe radio receiver of a true diversity system has two independent receiver sections with each having its own antenna that are spaced apart. The unit constantly monitors the receivers to select the one with the strongest signal. This makes for a very stable signal that virtually eliminates dropouts. In a home environment, especially if in a small room, you could probably get by fine without true diversity. For the professional setup true diversity is a must.
Wireless ChannelsYou might have noticed that some wireless microphones have designated channels. This simply means that the microphone transmitter has been assigned a specific frequency range. This allows for multiple microphones to be used simultaneously in the same location without interfering with each other. Keep this in mind whenever you purchase additional microphones for your system. As with most things the price of the microphone will usually determine the quality. Home users can generally get by with the less expensive models while professionals require the durability that the higher quality microphones provide. Be sure to visit the Put Your Karaoke System Together page.
Article by Richard Wise. Follow me on