Guide to the Best Translation System for Church

Editor’s Choice

  • This system is FCC certified
  • It has double earphones, one on each ear
  • The mic picks up sound well

Best Overall

  • This system is FCC certified
  • It is easy to use
  • It works up to 50 meters in an open area

Budget-Friendly

  • This system is FCC certified
  • It offers clear audio of the interpreter
  • The carrying case doubles for storage and charging

If you are in a hurry and just want to find out what the best translation system for Church is, then I’d recommend the EXMAX ATG-100T 195-230MHz Wireless Translation System as the best one.

With the advent of technology, it is easier to communicate with anyone in any part of the country and the globe. Especially when the pandemic started, everyone adopted a new means of communicating. And yes, even the church has taken advantage of new means of communication to deliver sermons at home.

We all know that the church uses lights and sounds systems together with the projectors during Sunday service. But did you know that your church can now provide audio translations of the worship services as well? As you read through this article, you will learn about translation systems, how to use them, and so much more!

Here are the Best Translation Systems for Churches we will be reviewing:

What is a Translation System for Church?

As most churches turn to live streaming their services and sermons, there’s a big chance that some of those tuned in do not speak the same language. This is where a translation system or equipment comes in.

As the name suggests, a translation system provides live translation of the worship service to the churchgoers. Usually, a translation system needs a speaker, an interpreter, and an audience.

How Does a Church Translation System Work?

Translation systems usually have three main components—the microphone or headset microphone, which the interpreter speaks through. The transmitter enables the interpreter to broadcast the speech to the receiver. To which the audience hears the interpretation through the receiver headsets.

Different Types of Translation System for Church

There are three types of translation systems you can use at church, these are:

Assistive Listening System/Devices

Assistive Listening Devices or ALDs are accessories that a deaf person uses to hear better. It can increase the speaker’s sound volume, making it more clear. That way, the wearer doesn’t have to strain themselves trying to hear the conversation.

Simultaneous Interpretation

Simultaneous interpretation is a form of interpretation where they translate the speech live. Usually, the interpreter is only allowed a short pause to listen to the sermon. The translation is still in time with what the speaker is saying. You can see this type of translation system during Presidential speeches and large-scale lectures.

FM Transmitter for Church

An FM transmitter sends a signal to a specific frequency where it can broadcast the message sent. Which is convenient for churchgoers since there’s only one FM station they can tune into for the Sunday service.

Things to Consider in Choosing the Best Translation System for Church

Deciding what kind of translation system fits your church is not a walk in the park. There are things to consider so you will maximize the system that you’re going to purchase. Here are some of them. 

How many churchgoers need translation?

Determine how many you need to cater. Many translation systems offer up to thirty wireless receivers. That’s a lot of receivers for only ten people that need them. So before you overspend, figure out if you only need ten receivers or thirty.

How many languages need translation?

In the same situation with the receivers, there are translation systems that have two transmitters. The transmitters are what the interpreters use to deliver the translated message.

If there’s more than one language, also note how many from that group would need receivers. You can round up the total you need for the church.

Where is the interpreter/s located? 

Ideally, the interpreters should be inside a soundproof booth. However, some churches have them inside the sanctuary or in a designated room. It filters out the background noise to help the interpreter hear without strain. A soundproof booth provides a better working environment for the interpreter. Also, the translation output results in a more transparent sound to the audience.

Do I need an interpreter console?

When the speakers speak more than one language, then you would need a console. But since you will be using the translation system in a church setting, you can opt not to buy a console. Interpreter consoles are more for large business meetings and lectures.

Single or multichannel system

Single system receivers only work with one fixed frequency. If there are any problems with the signal, then you cannot change to another.

Multichannel system receivers are more flexible since you have more channels. Useful for when you need to translate more than one language and for interference.

Choosing the Best Church Translation System

You can use this as a guide when choosing the best translation system for your church.

Radiofrequency or infrared translation systems

Radiofrequency translation systems are the standard when it comes to translation devices. They are easy to use and install, and they don’t cost as much. Most churches use radiofrequency systems instead of infrared translation systems.

If you need to translate the message to more than six languages or it contains private information, that’s when you use an infrared system. Infrared systems are more expensive compared to radiofrequency systems. Because you need to determine how many channels you need and if they can fit into the designated room. The set up harder and complicated.

Analog or Digital signal

This one depends on whether you’ll be using a radio frequency system or an infrared system. Radiofrequency translation devices are often paired with analog systems. With its lower price and due to the various radio frequencies, it won’t be hard to look for a clear signal. Since we’ll use this at church, an analog system works best.

Fixed or Portable translation systems

Fixed translation systems are more common in a church setting. They offer a more extensive range and coverage, perfect for big churches. Plus, this system gives you more flexibility with circuits that provide extra functions.

Portable transmitters are helpful when there are no available power outlets. No power outlets are perfect for church events and spiritual retreats. But if that’s not the case, then opt for a fixed translation system.

Government compliance and regulations

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) conducts tests and authorizes devices that meet their standards. The purpose is to ensure that devices used in the US or Canada do not cause harmful interference. So if you want to buy a translation device, it is safe to buy them from the US or Canada.

This is not to discourage you from buying from other sellers. But to be safe, always ask the seller for the FCC id of the product you want to buy.

Interpreter console

Interpreter consoles help change the tone and volume of the outgoing channel. It can also select which input and output channels that connect to the interpreter’s mic. Having an interpreter console is best for conferences with different spoken languages.

But since the church only has one language to translate, you won’t need an interpreter console.

Single or multichannel interpretation equipment

Multichannel interpretation equipment is ideal for churches that cover more than one language. It also allows you to work with different languages at the same time through an LCD screen. Easy to navigate and more flexible with the controls.

The single interpretation equipment doesn’t offer much freedom since you can only work on one fixed frequency.

Accessories

Besides the system itself, make a list of accessories you need as well. Double-check if you have all the cables you need. Also, see if the headset has a microphone attached to it, that way, it would be easy for the interpreter to use. If you have extra money, a case for the receivers would be a good buy.

Translation booths

If it fits in the budget, get a translation booth. Having a booth can help reduce the background noise on both the incoming and outgoing sounds. It results in a better quality of work for the interpreter.

EXMAX ATG-100T 195-230MHz Wireless Translation System

The EXMAX ATG-100T 195-230MHz Wireless Translation System comes with two transmitters and 30 receivers. All components are compact and lightweight, both weighing approximately 60 grams. Each device has a built-in 900mAh rechargeable lithium battery that lasts up to 18 hours and has a lanyard to make it easy to carry.

This translation system delivers crystal-clear sound in long ranges in a barrier-free environment. Plus, this has a built-in Phase-Locked Loop technology. What PLL technology does is stabilizes, modulates, and filters the signals. This technology would result in uninterrupted and clear signs every time. They also offer 99 channels for multi-language translations and possible signal interference.

Tours in large groups and large conferences commonly use this type of translation system. So this is perfect for both indoor and outdoor church activities as well. A large number of receivers can accommodate large groups and more than one language.

Pros:

  • This system is FCC certified
  • It is easy to use
  • It works up to 50 meters in an open area
  • It comes with a 32-slot charging case
  • Each transmitter comes with a clip-on microphone
  • This has a 2-year warranty

Cons:

  • This system does not come with replaceable earbuds
  • It only has earphones instead of two

Enersound 10-Person Multichannel Translation System

Out of the five that we’ve reviewed, the Enersound 10-Person Multichannel Translation System is the only system that uses a table-top transmitter. This means that this is a fixed translation system, so this is the only system out of the five that you can’t use for outdoor activities.

This system comes with one table-top transmitter and ten receivers. Both the transmitter and receiver have LCD screens for easy navigation. It comes with its microphone, but you can change it into a lapel mic if you’re more comfortable with that. This translation system offers superb sound quality with a wide working range of 152 meters and is expandable up to 305 meters.

Pros:

  • This system is FCC certified
  • It has double earphones, one on each ear
  • The mic picks up sound well
  • It is effortless to set up

Cons:

  • This product is without a case, so it’s an extra investment
  • This system does not come with replaceable earbuds
  • You cannot use this for outdoor events
  • This has no warranty

EXMAX UHF-938 UHF Acoustic Wireless Translation System

Unlike the first system we’ve reviewed from the same brand, this only has one transmitter and 20 receivers. Yet, this model has an extended working range of 150 meters compared to the previous.

Other than that, this system has good features of its own. There are 11 channels that you can use and up to five groups that can work simultaneously. This model also has the PLL technology like the first product, so expect clear and uninterrupted frequencies. But unlike the first product, this model uses double-A batteries that can last 15 hours. 

This device is still a great system, especially for those who want to start using a translation system at church. The amount of receivers is enough to accommodate a large group for Sunday service.

Pros:

  • The transmitter comes with a clip you can attach to your belt or pocket
  • It has double earphones, one on each ear

Cons:

  • This system is not FCC certified
  • This system does not come with replaceable earbuds 
  • Double-A battery sold separately
  • This has no warranty

Retekess T130 2 Transmitter 30 Receivers Translation System

All 32 components come with a rechargeable 900mAh lithium battery and an LCD screen. The LCD screen features an indicator light for settings and operation status, so it’s easy to read. 

The Retekess T130 2 Transmitter 30 Receivers Translation System also offers a wireless and hands-free design using lanyards to carry around your neck. The aluminum alloy case is fire, moisture, and dust-proof. Plus, it doubles as a charging case!

This system has a working range of 60 meters, complete with 99 channels and up to 40 groups working. So this would be perfect for churches with large groups and more than one language that need translations.

Pros:

  • This system is FCC certified
  • It offers clear audio of the interpreter
  • The carrying case doubles for storage and charging
  • This system is perfect for outdoor church activities

Cons:

  • It only comes with one earphone instead of two
  • This system does not come with replaceable earbuds
  • The foam protection inside the case may make it hard to connect the charging cord
  • The lapel mic picks up unnecessary noise

Retekess T130 1 Transmitter 15 Receivers Translation System

Compared to the previous model from the same brand, the Retekess T130 1 Transmitter 15 Receivers Translation System has half the amount. Only this model doesn’t come with a charging case but instead has a charging dock. Other than that, this model also has LCD screens for both the transmitter and the receiver. So you can be sure that this is also as easy to use as the previous model.

This system also offers 99 channels and can operate with up to 99 groups simultaneously, and has a working distance of 50 meters. So this would be good for large groups as well, and it’s the perfect amount for churches new to these systems.

Pros:

  • There are 16 lanyards provided for each transmitter and receiver
  • It offers clear audio of the interpreter
  • Quick charging
  • This system is FCC certified

Cons:

  • There is no case included
  • This system does not come with replaceable earbuds
  • It only comes with one earphone instead of two

Conclusion

As more devices are becoming accessible and user-friendly, the church can now cater to a larger audience. With the pandemic, Sunday service live streams have reached even first-time listeners. So as we welcome new members from different cultural backgrounds, we must do our best to help them understand the preaching. One of the ways to do that is through providing live translation systems to churchgoers.

For the church to provide live translations, they would need to use a translation system. The best church translation system I’d recommend is the EXMAX ATG-100T 195-230MHz Wireless Translation System. This system is easy to use for both interpreter and the audience. 

Its portable size is lightweight for long periods of outdoor church activities. Plus, it doesn’t distract the user during Sunday services. With up to 99 channels available, interference is easy to avoid. Also, with that many channels, your church can translate to more than one language per service.

Alex Shute
AUTHOR
Alex Shute
Alex is a family man and entrepreneur based in Los Angeles. His passion is to serve the global Church and bring people of diverse backgrounds together to learn & grow. In his free time, he enjoys perfecting pour-over coffee, smoking meats, and discovering new cycling routes around Southern California.