Berkeley Preparatory School

Berkeley Preparatory School upgrades to Sennheiser’s EW-DX System for a consistent networked, campus-wide wireless audio solution

The client

Founded in 1960, Berkeley Preparatory School is a Pre-K through grade 12 co-educational private, Episcopal day school located in Tampa, Florida. Berkeley Prep’s philosophy encompasses a balanced curriculum of academics and arts, clubs and activities, competitive sports, and community service.


The challenge

Berkeley Preparatory School needed a fully networked solution that could be managed offsite for their 80 acres campus. Being able to manage all the spaces from a centralized hub was a key consideration in their wireless audio decision. As Berkeley Prep is situated near Tampa International Airport and a dozen digital TV transmitters in the surrounding area, frequency coordination for wireless mics can be particularly challenging. That’s why the school needed a wireless system that could handle the crowded RF spectrum.  


The results

Berkeley Prep opted for EW-DX as it offers the lowest latency on the market (1.9 milliseconds) and eliminates the need for frequency calculation thanks to its equidistant frequency spacing which does not pollute available spectrum with intermodulation.

Berkeley Preparatory School, a highly ranked Pre-K to Grade 12 day school in Tampa, has a jam-packed schedule of activities for its 1,400+ students, as well as its faculty and staff, from theater productions to chapel services, daily staff meetings in the auditorium and more, all of which require wireless audio solutions. The state-of-the-art school has long used Sennheiser G3 wireless for its audio needs, but recently Productions Technical Director Christopher Cook has been looking for a new solution to meet RF challenges, while enabling a fully networked solution across the sprawling campus. With support from Beamworks, Inc., Berkeley Prep has rolled out 40 channels of Sennheiser’s EW-DX wireless system, the newest and most robust offering from the Evolution Wireless Digital family of products.

"I started working in audio in 2000, and when you go on tour, people are picky with what brand they use. Through traveling and using different wireless systems and microphones, I found that I always got more gain out of Sennheiser vs. other wireless brands. I fell in love with Sennheiser early and kept with it.”

Christopher Cook, Productions Technical Director at Berkeley Prep

A Sound Production

The recent installation of EW-DX across Berkeley Prep’s campus was completed at a crucial make-or-break-it point. The rollout was right in time for technical week, or tech week, for the school’s highly anticipated production of Mean Girls. They were the first school in Tampa to adapt the popular musical, and the wireless system rose to the challenge, “I used 24 channels of EW-DX, and it was immediately night and day [from our previous system]. The sound quality was more natural, the intelligibility was better – they were just so clean,” says Christopher, “I didn’t change my mic technique, it was just the units. I got a lot of great comments about how natural the production sounds.”


A Future-proof and Scalable Solution 

Christopher sees that the future is bright for EW-DX on campus with opportunities to improve audio in more places, “I’m really excited to eventually merge out into the athletic fields. For now, whenever someone sings the national anthem, we bring out the EW-DX. Eventually I want each venue to have EW-DX managed through Control Cockpit. I look forward to expanding with the EW-DX line and growing with it.” Beyond the sound quality, ease of use and centrally networked setup, the EW-DX upgrade at Berkeley Prep has given Christopher a distinct return on investment that most education industry AV and IT professionals could benefit from. He explains, “Anything that takes away stress or provides you with more time back in your workday is huge. All we have as people is our time so anything to give you more of it is worth the investment.”

Learn more about EW-DX.

Learn more about the Sennheiser Control Cockpit


Berkeley Preparatory School Website