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A little fussy, but otherwise good. - Until it broke
on February 26, 2015
Despite reviews, I decided to give these a chance and honestly I am impressed.
As other reviewers have noted, the batteries that come with it are complete no-names and shouldn't be trusted. That said, mine were intact and worked fine for the purposes of the test. Also, I am not sure what the target audience of a 1/4" output is, but in most cases an adapter is going to be required. Overall, I am ok with that. I ended up with a 6" corded adapter that I can attach to the tripod. This should reduce stress on my camera's microphone port.
Additionally, as other reviewers have said, the quality of these appears to be dependent on application. I tried one on two systems: A standard audio amp and a Nikon D7000. The audio amp I had to turn up the gain on the Pyle sending unit quite a bit, but after that it worked OK. I would not use the "volume" adjustment as such, think of it as gain. In that way, I was able to suss out the max gain before I started getting distortion. After that, it seemed to work pretty well.
On the D7000 I actually had quite a few problems at first. First off, the Nikon appears to have a very sensitive microphone input OR is expecting a completely un-amplified signal. In either case, I turned the microphone sensitivity in the camera from AUTO (default setting) to LOW. Then, I did the same trial and error with the Pyle "volume" knob until I got an acceptable signal without distortion. I did not get it perfect but with more time I believe I could have.
I only did a small range test and I was pretty impressed. The microphone transmitted from one side of my house (about 50-75ft) to the other without problems. This was including several plaster walls and some stairs. Individual results may vary.
The moral of this story is these are not plug and play. You are going to have to do 30+ min of sound checks before you get anything close to good results. That said, I expect this is the case with most wireless microphones... so I am not bothered. The need for an adapter is a little annoying, but the whole system (new batteries + adapter + mic) was still less than $20.
UPDATE: After sitting (off) on my desk for a couple of weeks, I fired this up again and it doesn't work. Also, apparently you can't use more than one of these at the same time. Absolute junk.