We compare some of the wireless guitar systems on offer from industry-leaders in our wireless guitar systems review.
In this blog we explore the different wireless guitar systems from leading brands including Shure, Line 6, and BOSS. Focusing on the following products, we take a deep dive into the pros and cons of going wireless and find out what each of these systems is best at:
These are all suitable systems for the gigging guitarist that have their respective benefits, and after you finish reading this blog you'll have a better idea of what will work best in your rig. Watch this video to see them in action and read on for the features and specifications of each model.
As more and more brands are offering wireless guitar systems, we decided to take an in-depth look at some of the best-loved products to determine which will best work in different kinds of setup and scenario. For a complete beginner's guide to wireless instrument systems, click here!
Why do I need a wireless guitar?
Anybody who has ever played guitar live will tell you the same thing - guitar leads can get messy. If you’re lucky enough not to trip over on stage (just as you hit the first note of your big solo, usually) you’ll still have a whole load of cable management to sort through after the show has ended.
Setting up takes longer when you have a lot of additional gear to sort through, and the idea of having a one-size-fits-all solution for your guitars seems like it would be the best thing in the world.
Using a wireless guitar system has a unique benefit when it comes to soundcheck too, as it will allow you to stand where the audience will be and make sure the sound is optimised for them as well as making sure it sounds great on stage. The products in this review all utilise a wireless guitar transmitter and receiver to leave space for you to do your thing without the fear of falling over in front of your crowd of adoring fans.
The GLXD-16 Shure wireless guitar system is one of the most complete and convenient products available to the modern guitar player. Shure has compiled the GLXD6 digital wireless pedal receiver, the GLXD1 bodypack transmitter, and the WA305 premium instrument cable into a handy package that is suitable to cover any situation that you might find yourself in.
A huge benefit to using this system is the additional tuner which is integrated into the pedal receiver. This practical innovation means that you don’t have to worry about taking up any precious extra pedalboard space with the receiver as it is designed to take the place of a tuner pedal at the start of your pedalboard line-up.
The transmitter can be trusted for up to 16 hours of continuous use, and the dedicated instrument cable has a locking thread so there is no chance anything will come disconnected. The GLXD6 receiver operates using intelligent frequency management, and with a typical range of 100 feet (and up to double that in ideal conditions), the Shure system constantly monitors for signal interruption, automatically switching frequencies so you get continuous, uninterrupted signal.
The receiver and transmitter will connect automatically, so there’s minimal set-up time, and it’s designed for both guitar and bass in a near-indestructible metal chassis. Most importantly though there is no perceptible difference in tone when using this system, making this well worth the investment if you’re planning on hitting the road for some gigs.
Line 6 Relay G10II
Featuring a compact charging dock with plug-in-and-play functionality, the Relay G10II Line 6 wireless guitar system provides up to 8 hours of completely liberated playing time - more than enough for any musician.
Also available as a standalone unit is the G10TII Transmitter. This functional piece of kit can be bought without the receiver and used with the Line 6 Spider V/V MKII 60, 120, 240, and 240HC amplifiers, as well as with Yamaha THR-II Wireless series amps. So if you’re already using one of these amps, this might be the system for you.
If you decide to buy the entire system you can expect simple charging with USB compatibility and up to 50 feet of line-of-sight range. The bright LED offers reassurance on battery status, and with both ¼” and XLR outputs you can be certain that your rig will be suited to any scenario.
Another pedalboard-friendly offering, the WL-50 BOSS wireless guitar system fits at the start of your chain and features super low-latency with a stress-free setup. The stompbox-sized receiver includes a docking port for charging the transmitter and ensuring the optimum wireless connection is utilised, whilst the DC output means that you can power the other pedals in your rig with a daisy-chain directly from the system.
The WL-50 boasts 12 hours of continuous playing time from its rechargeable battery, and with a range of up to 65 feet you can be certain that you won’t lose signal even on the largest of stages. The receiver can be powered with an optional power supply or two AA batteries, and spare WL-T transmitters are available in the event that you misplace yours.
If cable-tone is something that you’re worried about then the BOSS system has it all figured out, presenting an ingenious solution in the form of switchable cable-tone to replicate Long, Short, and Bypass settings.
When playing an instrument with passive pickups, the cable you use will affect your overall tone. This is heard as a reduction in the high-end frequencies, which is caused by the pickup's high-output impedance and its interaction with the materials used in the cable. This capacitive effect is increased with cable-length, becoming more pronounced the longer the cable is.
Most players have become used to the slight warmth that is added on to the sound of their guitar or bass, and WL-series products include integrated cable-tone simulation in order to reproduce this natural capacitive effect. This system has been tuned by BOSS to nail the perfect cable-tone simulation sound, with options based on how pronounced you want the effect to be.
If you thought that the WL-50 model from BOSS was jam-packed with features, the WL-60 has even more to offer those who are serious about taking their rig out onto the biggest of stages.
The large visual display and direct-access buttons allow for easy switching between channels and settings, whilst BOSS automatic scanning ensures that the best connection is always dialled-in and presented on the screen for you to see under stage lights. You can also keep an eye on the battery life and channel status here, with the transmitter capable of 25 hours of continuous use with 2xAA batteries.
The main selling-point of the WL-60 model is undoubtedly its large LCD screen, but this model is still blessed with all of the best features from the WL-50 model as standard, including;
- a DC output for powering other pedals
- an additional high-quality cable
- ultra-low latency
- 65ft of range
- cable-tone and bypass options
The WL-60 receiver is also capable of utilising multiple transmitters for the entire band to get hooked up with. The WL-T model transmitter will connect automatically and assign the strongest frequency to each player, allowing for flawless setup previously impossible with wireless systems.
More and more players are opting to free themselves from standard guitar cables and experience the unlimited potential of wireless instrument systems. Whether you play bass or guitar, solo or with a band, experience the freedom offered by these innovative products.
Shop a full-range of the best guitar wireless systems over at PMT online today and take the hassle out of playing live, or call us on 0151 448 2089 to speak to one of our Live Sound Experts about your needs.