A well-designed audio visual solution can allow your business to run smoothly and save you time and money. In contrast, a poorly designed audiovisual system can do quite the opposite. The first step for any company in successful audiovisual and video collaboration is learning what equipment you need. Below, we share our insights about what equipment you need to keep your video conferencing running smoothly.
Determine Your Meeting Space
There are essential pieces of equipment required in every quality audio visual collaboration system. However, what equipment your company needs depends on details like the size of your meeting space or the number of participants involved. If your office uses huddle rooms and conference centers, you’ll likely need different equipment than a remote office team who is meeting from their computers.
These huddle rooms are ideal for small teams of 4-5 people. Typically, a medium-sized display (55”-65”), a basic camera, and a set of speakers (potentially the speakers in the display) are enough to keep things running smoothly. Although these rooms are small and set up for fewer people, using the camera and microphone on your laptop will not suffice for your needs.
While small rooms are ideal for one-on-one meetings or small huddle groups, slightly larger spaces are suitable for 10-15 people. These rooms are set up for several video attendees to join at once. Medium rooms mean having multiple people sitting further away from the microphone.
To remedy this and ensure everyone has a positive experience, you will need a larger display or dual displays (65”-85”), and a fully integrated audio system designed to pick up sound throughout the space. You’ll also need a fully integrated Pan/Tilt/Zoom (PTZ) camera to provide higher resolution video capture of the larger area or allow for the ability to zoom in on individuals as the speaker changes during a conference.
These spaces are designed for larger meetings with more than a dozen people. Discussions of this size involve many working parts, and you don’t have time to deal with the technical difficulties that sometimes occur with these types of conferencing setups. You’ll need heavy-duty equipment and a team of specialists whose job is to ensure your tech runs smoothly.
Large workspaces should have fully integrated solutions with control systems and touch panel user interfaces to manage all of the system components. These rooms will have a minimum of dual displays (Usually 75” or larger) as well as integrated PTZ camera(s), microphones throughout the room, ceiling speakers, and multiple content source inputs throughout the room.
At AGT, we have experience with every size of video collaboration, from small huddle rooms to the largest conference room, auditoriums, and command and control centers. We can offer customized solutions for your business to keep things running smoothly. If you have questions about how we can enhance your audiovisual setup, contact our team today!
For remote teams that meet one-on-one, the camera built into your laptop may be enough to support your connection, but it’s far from the optimal choice for equipment. A stand-alone webcam is a better option, and you’ll want to choose something high-quality. For huddle rooms, you’ll want a wide-view camera that captures high-quality video and streams it without fuzziness or audio and technical issues. As the rooms grow to medium and larger spaces, a fully integrated High Definition PTZ camera is the best option.
The most important part of any meeting is the audio. Messages are not conveyed without quality audio so it is important to invest in a high-quality audio solution with microphones and speakers. Built-in computer microphones and speakers will not work in a conference room environment. Having a fully integrated audio system with balanced microphone and speaker systems ensures users receive all discussed information and ensures your conferences run smoothly improving an employee’s experience, resulting in better ideas and increased productivity. Many companies also find that it helps them appear more professional to clients and often assists them with having a positive first impression.
Your computer’s processing power matters more than you think, even with a simple one-on-one remote situation. In large-scale setups, your computer plays into an overall AV integration plan and is a necessary investment. Implementing computers with faster processors enables better video processing improving the quality of the video being seen and sent to the far side. Additionally, higher power processing allows you to quickly pull up infographics, illustrate your point, and keep your audience engaged. If you are struggling with your AV Integrations, AGT can help you find the best solutions to update your current system or rebuild the perfect AV setup.
Video Conferencing Software
You can have all the equipment in the world, use an AV integrator to design and install a setup ready for your team, but it won’t do you any good without the proper video conferencing software. There are dozens if not hundreds of video conferencing software options to choose from. Unfortunately, they aren’t all created equal, and you need one that makes your audio visual collaboration shine. There are three popular options for business video conferencing needs that we, at AGT, recommend:
Zoom is a popular video conferencing solution in the market and is used by thousands of businesses and institutions worldwide. They offer a variety of free and paid subscriptions to provide solutions for your entire team.
Another popular option is Microsoft Teams. Microsoft Teams offers capabilities besides video conferencing and easily integrates with other applications such as Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint to ensure great productivity for your entire team.
Cisco Webex is a choice for many large businesses looking to facilitate conferencing in huddle rooms in multiple locations. They offer fantastic security options to keep your video streams secure.
Video Collaboration Systems
Video collaboration systems made by companies such as Cisco and Poly incorporate much of the necessary equipment listed throughout this blog and are a wise choice for larger companies with multiple meeting spaces. They include fully integrated cameras and microphones that offer excellent audio quality for a variety of areas. The equipment in these systems is typically designed to integrate with your web conferencing software easily.
For businesses and educational institutions facilitating distance learning practices, smartboards can be an essential piece of audio visual collaboration equipment. These are large interactive displays that serve as a digital version of whiteboards. These are also handy for businesses needing to display charts, infographics, and large amounts of data.
This is the final piece of equipment on our list, but it is by no means the least important. For businesses looking to conduct large meetings, a properly sized large-format LED display or projection system is needed to provide the best image quality to users of the system to provide the highest level of interaction between parties on either end of the video call so it feels like you are in the room with them.