- Type: Article, Report or Whitepaper
- Topic: AV Industry; Best Practices; Standards
- Audience: All AV Professionals
- Publication Date: April 2016
- Language: English
Designer; General Knowledge; Installer; Networked AV Professional
When The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas hotel and casino was conceived more than a decade ago, it was meant to bring a next-generation level of luxury to The Strip. But even as it was upping the ante on luxury, The Cosmopolitan was raising the bar on audiovisual technology — a never-ending pursuit in Las Vegas, where a bigger screen or a louder sound system is always just around the corner.
You’ve heard that industry standards can have a positive impact on your business. Now read what AV professionals have to say about using standards in actual installations. "Standards are essential tools to help create exceptional user experiences," says one.
AV at sea has become as complex as on land. "Cruise lines are investing heavily in state-of-the-art sound and video systems, rigging and lighting equipment, and control and show-automation systems," says one expert. Training techs for sea duty is more important than ever.
More digital signage networks are taking advantage of 3G and 4G LTE wireless technology to deliver compelling content to new places, such as taxi cabs. Niche application or next big thing? And what about those data usage charges?
A dizzying array of new technology platforms and devices has AV integrators on their toes. "These concepts — each complex in its own right — are enriching the traditional AV environment by facilitating a deeper connection between users and the technology," says one. Read what others make of the changing landscape.
To be fair, AV professionals have understood the concept of the Internet of Things for years. But today, with IoT and the digitization of business processes changing the way the world works, opportunities for AV companies appear endless. Just make sure you secure those new devices.
"Competition is getting more diverse while at another level it’s consolidating," says the general manager of one West Coast AV integration firm. Changes in the business of AV have companies finding more ways to demonstrate their value. How does your experience compare?
With organizations embracing huddle spaces and other collaboration rooms, how do they make sure the systems they're installing don't open a door to hackers or malware? How do they know their conversations are private? Step one: Assume they aren't.
At the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show, a cadre of drones was called on to unveil Infiniti's latest crossover vehicle. The company that organized the "reveal" auditioned more than 30 drone operators for the job. You guess it: Live events are starting to catch drone fever.
Challenges and Opportunities in Wireless AV and Content Sharing, an InfoComm International whitepaper, dissects the pros and cons of using wireless communications for certain professional AV applications and explores current options in popular bands, 5 GHz and 60 GHz.General Knowledge; Installer
The executive boardroom is no longer an island unto itself. “We no longer take a room or project approach,” says one AV integrator. “It’s more of a platform approach so it crosses the entire enterprise.” With more and more collaboration technologies incorporated into boardrooms, many organizations want to ensure investments impact more than board meetings.
Times are tough for music venues, if hosting music performances is all they do. With opportunity knocking, small and mid-sized clubs offer just the right amount of space for a large variety of events (not everyone needs Madison Square Garden). And they often come with a certain amount of cachet. Go inside several such event venues.
"When more and more offices are going all wireless," says one AV professional, "I can't see how we as integrators are not going to be successful in deploying more of these wireless presentation systems on corporate LANs." Indeed, it's a real opportunity, but sometimes easier said than done. Read what experienced AV pros have to say about setting up wireless systems in the enterprise.
In October, about 90 percent of U.S households with children plan to participate in some kind of Halloween activity, according to the Haunted House Association. Yes, the Haunted House Association. And it turns out the business of scaring people hinges more on AV and automation than ever before. Read about it, if you dare.
With InfoComm India 2015 taking place this week in Mumbai, we look at the country’s dynamic market for AV products and services. In the world’s second most populous nation, where the government has launched a comprehensive initiative to modernize its digital infrastructure, it’s the corporate market that’s driving AV growth. Read the special report.
If ensuring quality of service for networked AV systems were easy, everyone would be a pro. But it's not, largely because of all the variables involved. Which is why designing AV systems for so-called QoS is such an opportunity for integrators, helping to differentiate themselves in clients' eyes. Get some pointers from this special report.
The audio, video and lighting technology that goes into a live event has come a long way in terms of sustainability. The industry has long promoted green practices as a way to strengthen client relationships, but now that products are going green, the case for more sustainable events is even stronger.
A properly integrated electrical system could be the most important element of an AV design. How do you ensure an electrical system provides consistent power to the many devices in an AV design? We dig into the nitty-gritty of InfoComm's Audiovisual Systems Performance Verification standard to offer insight.
How do you give everyone in an event space the same experience, no matter where they are? “Object-based audio lets you deliver both direct and ambient sound that’s fully immersive,” says one expert. Highly directional, 3D sound stands to reset the bar for live events. Get the lowdown.
Sonic signatures — musical tones or jingles that are the hallmark of a brand — have become a marketing staple (ask computer chipmaker Intel). But they can be tricky to execute at live events. That’s not stopping companies from trying to inject audio brands into concerts, festivals and other events. Here’s how.
You know how to verify audio performance. And you know how to ensure a video system is up to snuff. Control systems need love and attention, too. Here’s how to get started on control systems verification.
With the annual conference of the Consortium of College and University Media Centers (CCUMC) on the horizon, we asked participants from higher education how their jobs have evolved — or not. “We still have one faculty member who insists on using a VCR,” says one. Still, the convergence of AV and IT has meant big change and opportunity in higher ed. Read about it in this special report.
Bowling isn't what it used to be, but one company has a new vision. When it opened a location in New York's Times Square, Bowlmor AMF budgeted $1.3 million for audio, video and lighting. Event planners have taken notice and everyday bowlers have begun to benefit from a sound and light show that traditional nightclubs might envy.
The ability to control AV systems from a personal device, has flipped the equation of system management. The prospect of collaborating with a smartphone has meant new approaches to wireless integration. And the fact that everyone owns one of these devices and wants it to work seamlessly with whatever systems they encounter has put the user in control of AV.
With TechnoMultimedia InfoComm Mexico 2015 right around the corner, we talked to AV professionals about that country's projected $1.28 billion market for AV products and services. Clients are careful buyers, collaboration is hot, and the oil and gas industry have many in a holding pattern. Read about it in this InfoComm special report.
The pro AV industry has been providing post-install services for quite some time now. But how else is it being “servicized” in light of the Internet of Things (IoT) and other technology trends? How do AV service providers differentiate themselves? And what challenges do they face in that effort?
When it comes to video, you can’t just hang a screen on a wall and expect viewers to get the picture. The visual principles of AV design are about more than technology. Here are four things to consider when determining the perfect display environment.
While not as flashy as video or audio components, cabling is an important part of an AV system. Did you know there are 17 cable-related items you should check when verifying a system's performance? Let's start with these five.
IT executives may be much more AV-savvy than many in our industry think. And as one told us for this InfoComm International special report, “We are the people integrators are going to need to talk to.” Learn how IT executives at three major enterprises approach AV and incorporate it into their technology strategies.
Digital signage has grown well beyond airport arrival and departure screens, which heralded the widespread adoption of dynamic signage two decades ago. Now, signage can react to its environment with differing content.
How are companies like Freeman and PSAV integrating cloud-based systems into their event offerings? In many different ways. Not only can the cloud help live events companies execute better, it supports new technology features that clients expect for their audiences.
Have you ever wished you had more access to the CIO of the customers you work for? Or at least some of the IT execs who work with the CIO? What would you say about the value of AV to an enterprise technology strategy? How would you answer questions about network security and more? For the conversation to begin, AV pros need to get on the same page as CIOs. We talked to integrators to learn how they view this all-important relationship.
Even if your AV system sports an impressive amount of flash, a poorly considered design could ruin it. For example, if a display's too small or placed in an awkward position, it can detract from your message. Addressing such factors requires experience in a key component of AV design: ergonomics.
There are those in pro AV who believe drones are the next big business opportunity. The unmanned aerial devices have already taken their place in live event production. And despite the fact that the FAA is still working out rules to govern the use of drones, enterprising companies have found ways to work drones into their AV toolbox. Visit the Unmanned Systems and Drones Pavilion at InfoComm 2015 in Orlando, June 17-19.
"You'd be surprised the extent to which people have come to expect interactivity on screens at events," explains one executive whose company creates custom, interactive media. Or maybe you wouldn't be surprised. But as audiences expect to touch, gesture toward and otherwise mingle with the AV technology at live events, the next step for planners and AV companies will be turning those encounters into business intelligence.
Several years ago, rapper Tupac Shakur took to the stage. The only thing was, he’d been deceased more than 15 years and the Tupac on stage was the product of cutting-edge projection technology. For many at the time, holographic projection looked like the next big thing in live-event production, but in the years since, it’s proven a challenge to pull off the stunning effect for modern, tech-savvy audiences. What’s holding us back?
Digital signage is all grown up. In a short time, it has proven to be an effective, pervasive AV medium for communicating information, influencing behavior and showcasing brands. So how can digital signage be better? How can digital signage users ensure their solutions achieve their goals instead of just generating visual noise? "It's all about engaging the viewer and motivating them to take the action," says one expert. This InfoComm special report offers ideas.
Modern Approaches to Control Systems Design, an InfoComm International white paper, explores the ways that industry professionals today approach AV control systems in the context of enterprise AV and mobile, smart devices.
A good AV professional’s work is really never done. Before you can hand off a system to its users, you have to test it and confirm that it works as expected. This set of tips, distilled from InfoComm International’s AV System Performance Verification Guide, explains how to check five items off your video systems verification report.
It hasn’t always been for the better. As customers expect to be able to control enterprise AV systems using their personal tablets or smartphone devices, AV professionals need to make sure they manage expectations and navigate the possible hurdles to complete functionality.
Trends in consumer streaming applications bear watching by AV pros because they’re rippling out of homes and into offices, classrooms and stadiums. Consumer experiences often set workplace expectations, from accessing content on demand to viewing it on a device of choice.
What does it mean to manage AV/IT technology in an age of converged systems? How have responsibilities and skill-sets changed? And how did tech managers get where they are anyway? We asked several how they took their AV expertise and applied it to corporations, universities and more. “With users, many times they don’t understand the system or have a bad experience, which breeds fear,” says one. “I try to prevent that.”
In the third of a three-part series on unified communications and collaboration, AV professionals describe how many customers are already on the path to UCC. They just need someone to integrate their disparate systems in order to deliver on the promise of UCC and maximize the shared experience.
If sound is the stepchild to picture, then acoustics is the junior partner of sound. At least that’s how it seems sometimes. But the practice of acoustics design in spaces used for AV is more important than ever, especially as recent trends make it more challenging to communicate content effectively. Read about it in the InfoComm International® special report.
Nothing lasts forever, but the notion of a “pop-up event” has taken transience to a new level. Locations touting themselves as “venues” for abruptly-appearing, short-lived events (think streets, lots and vacant buildings), offer a number of possibilities. But that kind of impermanence has implications for AV systems. Read more.
Almo Pro A/V’s 2015 E4 AV Tour kicks off soon. According to Sam Taylor, Almo Pro A/V’s Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, the company has totally overhauled its E4 curriculum to help AV integrators tackle the newest challenges. Taylor offered some insights into the state of the pro-AV market, digital signage, content creation and more. He even opened the kimono on what the company sees as the top AV technologies for the next five years.
Chances are you know a young AV professional such as Travis Hopkins, who hails from Washington, D.C. In fact, your story of arriving in the AV industry full of passion may be a lot like his. Read this special feature about a young man’s journey to find his calling in AV and ask yourself if you can help someone like Travis become the future of our industry.
When you design an AV system, the idea is to streamline the process and ensure the system delivers on the customer’s expectations. Does your AV design go through these phases?Designer
In the second of a three-part special report on the role of AV professionals in unified communications and collaboration, we look at the challenges to effective UCC solutions and how AV pros can help solve them. From interface design to the room environment, several factors help determine whether UCC users can communicate effectively.
With Integrated Systems Europe 2015 right around the corner, we talked to AV professionals about the $17.5 billion European market for AV products and services. Which countries are growing the fastest? Which are growing the slowest? And which AV technologies and applications offer the greatest opportunities? Read about it in this InfoComm special report.
Just because you've finished installing that new audio system doesn't mean you're finished. AV systems performance verification is a critical part of AV integration because it helps ensure that what you've built is what the customer wanted. Start with these five pointers, then explore further how to verify audio system performance.
Having evicted wireless audio users from one part of the radio frequency spectrum just a few years ago, the Federal Communications Commission has plans to auction off another band -- eventually. This time, some concessions have been made to the many groups who count on wireless microphones. But will it be enough?
The first in a three-part series about unified communications and collaboration and the role AV professionals play in delivering exceptional UCC solutions. In this part, AV integrators who work in UCC discuss the skills required to succeed in this field and how UCC providers in the AV industry identify customer requirements.
InfoComm International volunteers have produced a definitive guide to integrating AV into 21st-century learning spaces. The 158-page document is free to download and includes everything from descriptions of education technologies, to design considerations for learning spaces, to best practices in project planning, budgeting, and coordination. Learn more and download this valuable resource.
How do you make sure no one can eavesdrop on your client's videoconference? How do you know hackers can't send their own content to a network of digital signs? With more AV systems on the network, it's important that AV professionals know how to protect them as if they were desktop computers or mission-critical servers. Read about the issues and the measures pros should take in this special report.
This InfoComm International whitepaper analyzes the impact that UCC is having on the AV industry and how AV professionals can play a significant role in UCC success. It outlines the business and end-user challenges of UCC solutions and how they can be overcome through the design and integration skills of AV pros.
AES67-2013, the audio protocol developed by the Audio Engineering Society, is now backed by the newly formed Media Networking Alliance. All involved have their work cut out for them as they try to forge interoperability among various developing digital audio networking technologies. But if anyone can do it, maybe the AES can.
InfoComm International is committed to standards development. As an American National Standards Institute-accredited Standards Developer, InfoComm relies on hard-working volunteers to help raise the bar on AV systems performance across the industry. As you might expect, 10-year-old initiatives change over time. Read how InfoComm’s commitment to industry standards has evolved.
The Hammerstein Ballroom, part of the famed Manhattan Center, offers the best of two worlds. Live musical acts love it; so do corporate events clients. It has an opera house feel combined with 21st-century audio, video and lighting technology. After a two-year upgrade, the versatile venue is ready for everything. Read about it in this special report.
The notion that you could deliver an exceptional AV experience without pulling cables seemed fanciful just a short time ago. But wireless AV has been around in various forms for a while now — from wireless microphones to RF-based control and transmission. In this InfoComm International special report, get tips on using current wireless technologies and take a peek at wireless AV solutions to come.
The humble house of worship is often a trailblazer in the use of audiovisual technology. From projection-mapping to large-scale LED videowalls, many of today’s modern churches are focusing on what members see in order to underscore what they hear. “We’re moving toward an environment in which we no longer have to be limited to conventional formats,” says one AV integrator. Read the special report.
Do you start your digital signage conversations with technology? Think about kicking things off with content. Experts say the best way to start is to learn what needs to be displayed and where, so you as an AV professional can recommend the best way to display it. Read the special report.
As video technology grows more sophisticated and prices continue to drop, live events professionals have engaged in a race to create bigger and better video experiences. Says one, “Once one event producer sees very large projection or LED walls, they’ll want something as big or bigger for their next event.” Read more in this InfoComm special report.
At the InfoComm AV Executive Conference, held Sept. 17-19, 2014, industry leaders were encouraged to think differently about their businesses. No AV company should be a commodity, participants were advised, and planning for the future means always communicating your relevance to customers. Read more.
Everyone from rock bands to corporate presenters wants live events to sound their best. To that end, live events professionals are taking top-of-the-line gear from studios and putting it on stage. “The spoken word isn’t just getting a touch of EQ anymore,” says one pro. Read more in this InfoComm special report.
In preparation for the InfoComm AV Executive Conference, Sept. 17-19, 2014, in Scottsdale, Ariz., featured speaker Dr. Yves Pigneur offers advice on how AV companies can communicate their vision and build excitement.
In an exclusive excerpt from his book "Paid to Think: A Leader's Toolkit for Redefining Your Future," consultant, inventor, advisor and speaker David Goldsmith previews his talk at the InfoComm AV Executive Conference, Sept. 17-19, 2014.
The buzz around concepts such as distance learning and massive open online courses (MOOCs) make it seem as if media and higher education have suddenly and serendipitously collided, like some professorial version of chocolate and peanut butter.
The advent of IPv6 addresses the rising global issue of IP address shortage. As the number of networked devices continues to grow, AV integrators might begin considering this option. Tim Kridel polls the industry about IPv6 adoption in his latest special report.
Various combinations of true laser, LED-laser and laser-phosphor emerged to target various applications, aiming to drive down the costs associated with lamp technology while improving projector brightness and eco-friendliness. Monica Heck brings a special industry report.
Event spaces that come with notable provenance, like Alcatraz, the former federal prison in San Francisco Bay, may find that their names are a feature subject to interpretation. But in the case of the TimesCenter, its distinction tends to attract exactly the kind of client it wants: corporate, upscale and occasionally whimsical. But they still expect a show, and they usually get one. Dan Daley reports.
Dan Daley reports on the progress in the area of Audio Video Bridging, a set of technical standards developed by the IEEE Audio Video Bridging Task Group, whose mission is to improve the quality of AV content streaming.
With the recent arrival of 4K players, digital signage seems to be joining the rush toward bigger and better resolutions. However, there’s a feeling in the industry that it’s too soon to talk about 4K, never mind 8K for most commodity, real-world deployments. Monica Heck provides an in-depth look.
Learn how an InfoComm member, Quince Imaging, is using book smarts and just enough equipment to transform surfaces into spellbinding 3D video experiences.
WebRTC is one of the hottest topics in pro AV, with plenty of hand-wringing about whether it will commoditize videoconferencing or grow the market by creating more endpoints that SIP and H.323 systems can connect to. Either way, it’s clear that there’s already enough customer interest that AV pros need to figure out how to support it. Tim Kridel reports.
Like peanut butter and chocolate before it, in retrospect it seems inevitable that social media and live-event AV technology would make for a cool mashup. Increasingly, we’re seeing pictures and video from Facebook, and images and comments from Twitter and Instagram leaping from users’ mobile devices onto 60-inch LCDs and 20-foot projection screens at corporate and other types of events. Dan Daley gives an in-depth look at this trend.
Barry’s interest in music, live audio, and broadcasting led him to develop skills for AV integration. He credits his work as a volunteer for a college radio station for kindling the passion for AV.
Crystal’s been an InfoComm International® member for over five years. She feels professional affiliations are a way to show that she is a knowledgeable resource for her clients and architectural partners.
Heather's been in the industry for the past 17 years. She was beginning to receive extremely technical projects and felt that she needed more training, so she turned to InfoComm. At the last year's show, she passed her CTS-D exam.
Jay's been in the AV world his entire life. His dad ran a radio station until the late '80s so he grew up in that industry. He started like most AV guys, running sound at his church and trying to fix everything in his house by "destroying" it.
Leonard went from coordinating cable pulls by electricians to learning more and more about the technology, eventually moving away from the field side of things toward project management, then system design, and now finally into the consultant role.
Nick started in electrical engineering, but his background in IT, fire alarm, security, and other systems put him on projects where he was exposed to more and more AV design.
Churches and other houses of worship are now integral parts of sales strategies for pro-audio manufacturers, some of which have dedicated personnel on their sales staffs to this market. In an industry whose profit margins have been pressured by lower-cost digital-based products and global competition, the growing need for this technology in the HOW market is a welcome one. Dan Daley reports on this trend.
Lync enables PCs, tablets and smartphones to double as both deskphones and videoconferencing endpoints. As a result, many companies are using Lync as a way to eliminate the upfront and operational costs of deskphones and specialized endpoints. That savings could free up more money for the AV budget.
InfoComm was privileged to sponsor and participate in the USA Science and Engineering Festival, held April 25-27 in Washington, D.C. Thousands of kids, parents and educators got to play with some of the latest audiovisual (AV) applications and learn more about careers and training in AV.
Abdul Riyaz has been an AV pro for eight years. He works as a Senior Design Engineer for Omnix International Dubai-UAE in their Abu Dhabi Branch. He became an AV professional through his interest in collaboration technology/solutions.
Gordon Moore, CTS®, is Vice President at Lectrosonics. Selected as InfoComm International® Educator of the Year in 2000, Moore has been active as an instructor for InfoComm International since 1991. He is a Senior Faculty Member for the InfoComm University™. He will be teaching a course titled All About Audio at InfoComm 2014. He has abundant professional and teaching experience so we asked him to share some of it with you for our anniversary.
Michael’s been interested in AV since high school, tinkering with the audio system in his friends’ cars, then his own. He worked his way up from installer to field engineer and programmer to his current position as a design engineer.
Earning a degree in mechanical engineering, Mike didn't plan to become an AV professional. However, leading the AV design charge over the course of his career, he eventually learned every AV subsystem available.
Nick’s worked in the industry for 34 years, and has been an InfoComm member since the '80s when it was known as NAVA. He believes “it is the single most important source for AV professionals to develop their understanding of the industry.”
Sarah studied music and audio technology in college. She’s been in the AV industry for seven years, working as an audiovisual technician for Columbia University before finding a place with integration at PPI.
While the a la carte model for AV has seemed to work well enough for event production, that’s not the way it works at the two signature Cipriani event locations in Manhattan, on East 42nd Street, directly across from Grand Central Station, and 55 Wall in the financial district. One of the reasons that Cipriani does as well as it does is because it’s offered as a fully equipped venue, with sound tailored to the rooms’ individual acoustical characteristics and lighting and video ready to be flipped on.
Interactivity is about much more than just adding a touch-screen or an app to a traditional signage network. Delivering a truly interactive and successful signage experience requires planning, expertise and a deliberate thought process.
In the wake of instant gratification provided by social media journalism, apps, and streamed content, Hybrid TV seems like a natural next step in the ongoing symbiosis between broadcasting and broadband systems. Combining technologies simply makes sense when you factor in bandwidth expansion and the sheer practicality of reducing the number of devices you’ve been using simultaneously. Now you will be able to see a show and tweet about it from your TV. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Metropolitan interactive, a digital, sustainable, marketing firm that employs designers, engineers, programmers, and construction personnel to create original solutions to technical challenges, has just celebrated a year of existence. We met with their CEO Jeffrey Mele to talk about professional development, integration, and innovation in the AV industry.
A training-rich touring event organized by Almo Professional A/V in partnership with InfoComm International® is poised to kick off this year’s program on March 11 in Dallas. Now in its fifth year, the E4 AV Tour exposes AV integrators, consultants, and resellers to the latest technologies and provides high-quality certification courses for free.
The American Bar Association now lists the AV/IT Infrastructure Guidelines for Courts as one of its member resources. The document describes the design guidelines for architects, AV/IT specialists, judges, court administrators, and others concerned with courthouse and courtroom construction and renovation.
HDMI has a rep for being a consumer-oriented technology, right down to the perpetual lack of a locking connector. So what does the 2.0 version, which debuted in September 2013, have for pro AV?
The largest union representing workers in the entertainment industry, IATSE, and InfoComm International® will continue to provide live event training to IATSE members.
Twelve InfoComm publications and standards have been included in an Italian collection of standards called UNI/PdR 4:2013, Audio-Video and Controls (AVC) integration services — Requirements for design, installation, configuration, calibration, programming and technical verification.
As we entered the 21st century’s teens, audio and video recordings of panel discussions, interviews on stage, and other types of events transitioned to digital files. But, what’s radically different from the old days are the array of file format choices and the ways those recordings can now be delivered to attendees after the show.
Two of PLASA's standards related to theatrical rigging safety have been revised and approved by ANSI as American National Standards: ANSI E1.21 for temporary outdoor structures and ANSI E1.4 for manual counterweight rigging systems.
What’s behind the trend is the need for increasingly costly sports venues to generate more revenue for their owners and managers. Music concerts have been a regular component in strategies to keep major-league arenas and stadiums operating when their anchor sports leagues go dark for the season, but even venues that are part of colleges and universities are also catering to large-scale events, such as graduations, to help defray costs.
The use of wireless audio systems, including wireless microphones for artistic performers and onstage announcements, and intercom systems needed to keep complex live-event productions running smoothly, has been steadily increasing as business picks up in the wake of a lengthy recession. As per Strategic Meetings Management, a sector analysis by market researcher Aberdeen Group, analysts are estimating that total U.S. spending on corporate meetings and events is expected to rise by 20 percent over the next two years, Unfortunately, it’s doing so just as wireless spectrum -- the radio frequencies used for wireless communication -- is about to undergo yet another contraction that will further restrict the wireless playing field for professional users.
You could say that the coming out party for unified communications was years ago. Still, 2013 proved eventful for collaborative technologies. From cloud services to mobile conferencing, AV professionals discovered new ways to think about the humble online meeting.
We know that estimating the cost of an AV project is hard and getting harder. What the industry needs is a comprehensive, secure, cloud-based tool that allows all types of AV professionals to research solutions and factor in the cost of labor. The new AV-iQ delivers that and more.
Now that country music’s big night has gotten even bigger, the sky — and the RF channel count — is the limit. How did the crew for this month’s Country Music Association Awards turn a cavernous hockey rink in Nashville, Tenn., into a more intimate, TV viewer-friendly venue?
Chances are you’ve got a solid grasp on CobraNet. And maybe you’ve come around to Audio Video Bridging (aka, AVB) and understand that Dante wasn’t just a major Italian poet who wrote about hades. Congratulations. For all your diligence, the Audio Engineering Society has a new networking standard you should learn.
Roll out the Halloween decorations and spooky stories! And if you’re brave enough, drop by one of this year’s increasingly sophisticated haunted houses, replete with high-end AV, intricate lighting and complex show control. In fact, you can probably visit the best of these venues long after the goblins hibernate because they’re big business.
What are these “huddle rooms” that people keep talking about? They’re not actually rooms, but rather spaces where workers can congregate and hold ad hoc meetings. More enterprises are tearing down office walls and phasing out conference rooms in favor of these huddle spaces — and they don’t work unless they include the right AV gear.
Producing quality video content for online distribution is critical to getting a message out. Actually distributing that content takes a unique set of technology chops. Video streaming may seem like an IT application, but it’s really a networked AV system. Here’s how it works.
First came Apple AirPlay, then Google Chromecast, then requests from AV users to employ such consumer devices in classrooms and conference settings. Pro-AV manufacturers have other ideas. Are they better or just different? Here’s the latest consumer vs. pro debate.
With the cost of broadcast-quality equipment dropping and the pervasiveness of broadband connections growing, it’s little wonder that everyone from houses of worship to universities and corporations are using streaming technology to get into the broadcast game. But there’s a big difference between doing it because you can and doing it well. Read how several churches are getting their messages out online. The first in a two-part report.
The European Union’s Ecodesign Directive, which aims to reduce the power consumption of a whole host of products — including AV electronics — is like the ENERGY STAR program in the United States. Only the Ecodesign Directive, unlike ENERGY STAR, is not voluntary; it’s law. The Professional Audio Manufacturers Alliance wanted to know how the regulations impacted the sale of AV gear in Europe. Does every AV product need to conform? Download PAMA’s whitepaper to find out.
What do you think of when you think of portable PA systems? Hostage negotiators? (Apparently, you’re not alone.) Think again. Today’s wireless PA systems are feature-rich, versatile and ready for deployment at live events. Did we mention they sound good, too?
How strange would it be to walk into a ballroom, see everybody swaying to the music, and not hear a note? So-called “silent shows” are gaining interest from live-event planners, and not just in music venues. Corporate, retail and education event producers are clueing into the possibilities of turning a group experience into something more personal.
Many live events and other AV professionals came into the industry through a side door. They went to a school to study graphics design, or TV production or some other specialty. There was a time these important AV technicians learned on the job, but today, is that enough to build a trained network of independent service providers?
Remember when 3D was all the rage? It isn’t so much anymore — unless you know where to look. There’s a segment of professional AV that’s come to embrace 3D technology and use it in real-world situations. What can you learn from their experience? Find out in this InfoComm International® special report.
In the run-up to InfoComm's AV Executive Conference, Sept, 10-12, 2013, revenue growth expert Everett Hill explains why a viable value proposition is key to sales.
In preparation for the InfoComm AV Executive Conference, Sept. 10-12, 2013, growth strategist and thought leader on Relationship Economics David Nour explains, among other things, that doing business differently can lead to more success than just doing business better.
Les McKeown, renowned speaker, author and advisor on accelerated business growth, previews what he will be discussing at the InfoComm AV Executive Conference, Sept. 10-12, 2013. Learn how to not only grow your business, but also scale it.
Nhat Pham, social media strategist, speaker and author, is gearing up to present at the InfoComm AV Executive Conference, Sept. 10-12, 2013. But first he shares some thoughts on which of your connections are most likely to lead to more business.
At the InfoComm 2013 show in June, 4K display was all the rage. But what could you realistically do with all those pixels? We survey AV professionals to find out how long, if ever, it will take the industry to embrace 4K.
Using IT networking to move AV content has gradually become accepted and advisable. Many have been doing it for years, but only now have their choices grown so varied. The old ways still work, but new kids on the block have a lot to offer, too.
Within a few short years, half of all employers will formally welcome employees to use their personal mobile devices on the job. It will be up to technology specialists to make sure all those devices can get on a network, join a videoconference or just beam content to a presentation system.
If you’ve enjoyed cinema sound in a movie theater (or elsewhere), you’re familiar with B-chain audio — the speakers, amplifiers and processors that make up a sound system. Today, InfoComm is working with leading thinkers from the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers, the Audio Engineering Society, and the Acoustical Society of America on standards and best practices that could improve audio well beyond the movie house.
As much as you think your AV firm can make more money and improve margins by offering managed services, no client will take you up on your offer if they don't have a need. Learn what the push for managed AV services is really all about. And hear from AV pros about what companies should consider as they embark down this potentially lucrative path.
“Unified communications is the only technology that has been ‘launching’ for 16 years.” So say the authors of this special report on UC and the “consumerization” of video collaboration technology. If you’ve never heard the term “contextual connectivity,” you should at least know that it may impact your next VTC design. Here’s why.
To many, live events and installed AV systems are like apples and oranges. So why would a rigger, for example, want to acquire the skills necessary to become a Certified Technology Specialist™? It turns out there are many reasons, and today, more live events professionals are taking the time to broaden their knowledge base.
From insurance issues to 4K displays, event safety to Google Docs, these are the trends that will influence the live events industry in the coming months and years. Will Elvis "appear" at future shows? Find out.
Today, George Mason University has a tool at its disposal that will help its various departments — and others on campus — to define objectively its high-contrast requirements: the ANSI/INFOCOMM 3M-2011 Projected Image System Contrast Ratio standard.
Cheap technology, rich content, mobility and the cloud. These are some of the trends that experts say will shape the market for digital signage solutions this year.
According to InfoComm’s 2012 Global Market Definition and Strategy Study, the healthcare market is the fastest-growing in North America. How can you crack it? One way is to offer solutions that protect speech privacy and help facilities comply with federal regulations.
During a recent, special performance, every keystroke that rock legend Elton John made on his high-tech keyboard was streamed to similarly equipped keyboards around the world.
One of the greatest benefits of AV-IT convergence is the prospect of running less wire. That’s where the prospect of running power to AV devices using network cabling comes into play. Think lower costs, easier installs and greater flexibility in positioning gear. But also keep in mind that not all Power over Ethernet is created equal.
When tragedy strikes a concert, state fair or outdoor festival, it makes headlines and sends the industry into action. After a couple years’ worth of high-profile incidents, progress is being made toward codifying various live-event safety measures into standard business practices. Read what it means to be “Storm Ready.”
At no time in the history of videoconferencing has the prospect of interoperability been this within reach.
AV pros are already familiar with hundreds of acronyms and alphanumeric designators, so what’s a few more? New sustainability standards and protocols introduced recently may prove especially significant to a portion of the industry that has attracted the attention of the green movement: events.
Do you want to mix the sound for a concert or corporate event from the balcony, even though the FOH console is on the main level? How about from the box seats, house left? No problem, there’s an app for that.
Many AV organizations identify their next generation of project managers by putting certain employees to the test and seeing how they respond. But is a trial by fire the best way to identify and develop the type of professionals you need to guide your company to better project outcomes and healthier customer relations? Probably not.
There is measurable value in using client surveys as a tool in the client relationship management toolkit. Find out how to approach the survey process.
Clients don't want pre-recession AV for their presentations. Pipes and drapes don't cut it anymore. Read what else today's meeting planners are looking for.
Does your company hold so-called “post-mortem” meetings after a project is finished? Do they tend to focus on what went wrong and who was responsible? If so, you’re probably doing it wrong.
Please don’t catch yourself saying what our project management expert once heard uttered by someone at an AV company: “Did you want it ‘done’ or ‘done done’?”
At the InfoComm 100 last month, experts offered plenty of food for thought to AV pros seeking to integrate smart buildings. From necessary skills to next-generation technology, we’ve summed up two days of insight in these important points. And answered the question, what does “big data” have to do with anything?
Even the most well-defined, cookie-cutter project experiences change. The challenge is in how you manage changes to an AV design or installation and whether it’s part of a clearly stated process.
With just days to go before the election, go behind the scenes of the presidential debates to learn how live events professionals turn two guys talking on-stage into a pitch-perfect audio experience — both for the live audience and for millions of TV viewers.
Discusses the reasons healthcare is the fastest-growing market for AV systems in North America, according to InfoComm’s latest Market Definition and Strategy Study.
When managing people, competence and behavior are often indistinguishable — and that’s a problem. Many managers automatically link the two together.
Often, when inquiring after the status of a project, people ask one or two questions: “How much is done?” and/or, “Are we on schedule and on budget?” To which the replies are invariably: “Almost done, don’t worry” and/or, “On time and on budget.”
Around 2005, as commodities and construction prices were skyrocketing, clients began clamoring for designs to be done more quickly. BIM would become the displacing and disruptive technology in the marketplace because it reduced both time to market and cost to owners.
Live events these days take many forms. Few live events, however, match the sheer sprawl and complexity of the X Games, an annual spectacle put on by sportscaster ESPN featuring action (a.k.a. extreme) sports, from skateboarding to BMX bike riding.
Here’s a question all AV companies need to ask: How do we manage the people inside our organizations — those people working within our processes, supporting the projects and operations that are part of our well-defined strategy and visible portfolio of opportunities?
Why should AV companies collect youth like it’s a precious metal? Let’s count the reasons:
I view process as simply how we do things. If you watch people and how they do something, you can measure their effectiveness (quality) and efficiency (speed and waste).
The final link in the digital signage chain is usually some sort of visual display — and sometimes an audio system — and that’s the expertise of the professional AV systems integrator
Networked digital audio has become a goal for many live-event producers, with the Holy Grail being an analog-to-digital conversion that takes place at the stage box, with the audio signal staying digital until it hits an amplifier on the way to a speaker.
After submitting a well-structured scope of work, whether in response to a request for proposals or via direct sales, an AV firm often gets good news: Your company’s proposal has been accepted (follow the advice of earlier articles in this series to see your rate of acceptance grow).
Want to get an idea of what clients and event planners will be asking for next fall? Look no further than the opening ceremonies of the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.
AV systems have become essential tools in the daily operation of almost every kind of business or institution. In the early days, when AV systems consisted primarily of standalone projectors and screens, most users were able to figure out how to operate them without much expert assistance.
The roots of the AV industry are firmly planted in the K-12 education market, dating back to the formation of the National Association of Visual Education Dealers (NAVED) in 1939.
The relationship between Austin, Texas, and the South By Southwest (SXSW) mega-event that the city has hosted for the past 25 years is becoming one of basic physics.
But if we’re looking to create an accurate estimate, we need to analyze its three characteristics: assumptions, methodology and presentation.
Working on hundreds of projects and training thousands of project managers, I’ve often wondered why so few people around me have common sense. Many times I’ve discovered their lack of common sense three-quarters of the way through a project, which is a little late.
The project management practice of developing what’s called a “work breakdown structure” got its start in the U.S. Department of Defense. Today, companies of all stripes consider it an important method for separating a project into deliverables and getting a handle on the overall scope of work.
Innovation is about the pathway to an end result. The end result is about solving problems and solving problems is inevitably about the client.
Look in any college student's room and it's a safe bet you won't find a Cisco E20 or a Polycom VVX 1500. Their absence is a major reason why it's challenging for schools to enable one-on-one and multiparty videoconferences between students and faculty.
Every lighting professional has a tale of his own epiphany about LED lighting. The concert touring business seems on-board with LED, for instance, but theatrical and corporate events appear to be lagging in their adoption. Still, the transition to LED for live events is accelerating.
A well-defined and communicated scope statement is one of the primary methods of managing a client’s often-changing expectations of what they will ultimately receive from a project.
Live events professionals descended on Washington, D.C., to chart a course for the year ahead. The inaugural InfoComm Live conference was created to spot trends, share best practices and gauge the state of the industry. What is that state?
AV professionals monitoring the iPad announcement need hear only three things about the new product: 4G, HD, and quad-core. Taken together, those iPad features describe an instantly viable, high-definition videoconferencing endpoint.
If AV integration companies want to be more respected by clients in the marketplace, their contracts should be the starting point for creating credibility and professionalism.
Many of the AV integration companies I’ve worked with have employed a range of sales strategies and styles. But overall, their approaches come down to this: short-term sale versus long-term relationship.
We’ve all heard how different generations of people (baby boomers, Gen X, Gen Y) work and live differently. This sometimes causes frustration for those of one generation who must interact with those of another generation whom they deem not to be acting “correctly.”
We asked Andre LeJeune, CTS®, how training for live events has evolved over the years and how the industry itself has changed.
Last year marked the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program's first decade of existence, a span bookended by two major economic slumps.
If the world seems like it’s gotten a lot louder, it’s because it has. Or at least there are a lot more sound systems out there making noise.
If you haven't heard of the analog sunset, the good news is you're not alone. The bad news is, ignorance won't be bliss for AV professionals and clients alike.
What should the vision include? How does a young (or mature), growing company implement an effective vision?
Is the audio/video integration industry ready to fully acknowledge the value of women in the project management role and support their growth?
Texas is certainly a big place, but Austin, all things considered (like, it’s the state capital), is a relatively small town. That worked in favor of the folks who collaborated on the creation of ACL Live, the new home of the long-running PBS hit show Austin City Limits.
On August 13, 2011, a stage collapsed during a powerful storm at the Indiana State Fair. Now, proponents say, getting the word out and training professionals to use the standards are critical to this dynamic industry.
In almost every market where they’re used, audiovisual systems have evolved from “nice-to-have” toys to business-critical systems — to the benefit of the entire AV industry.
In September, at the InfoComm 100 conference, an annual gathering of industry leaders held by InfoComm International®, much of the focus was on how AV businesses must evolve in a world where AV and IT have converged.
It is perhaps the Holy Grail of industry standards: to be specified or expressly integrated into other industry standards, best practices or requests for proposals. Take, for example, the growing stable of ANSI-accredited, AV performance standards from InfoComm International®.
Building codes have existed for almost 4,000 years. To this day, building and safety codes dictate construction practices. But codes have only become high priority for AV professionals over the last 50 years, as AV equipment migrated from the movable rolling cart to permanent installation in public and private buildings.
You may not know it, despite all the press surrounding the green movement, but there will soon be another commercial building code that will impact what we do as AV and technology professionals.
The rise of SBT presents both a daunting challenge and a compelling opportunity for AV professionals. What sets SBT apart from other trends is the cross-industry goodwill and collaboration that will drive SBT to the forefront of all construction projects in the near future.
Working on projects for the government has always required a certain amount of discretion and attention to detail. And over time, the roles of the AV consultant and integrator have risen in profile as AV technologies have evolved into vital communications tools for government agencies.
The AV industry often sits at the crux of revolutions in building design and technology. IT network convergence, green technology and integrated project delivery (IPD) are changing the way people design, inhabit and use a building. AV professionals are now turning their attention to smart building technologies (SBT), a growing force within the design and construction industries that, once again, requires a strong AV industry presence.
Like no other, the field of acoustics is rife with myth, misinformation and marketing tactics that belies the true science and legacy of the trade.
Last August, members of InfoComm International®’s Integrated Building Technologies Task Force attended the National Conference on Building Commissioning in Cincinnati, Ohio. Their goal: to explain to building facility managers how the AV industry could help them coordinate their low-voltage systems in order to make their buildings operate more efficiently.
InfoComm International® has been working with a variety of coalitions to convince policymakers to tone down the dangerous rhetoric leading to the cancellation of meetings and events around the country; to embrace sensible guidelines for companies receiving taxpayer assistance; and to promote travel as an economic solution.
InfoComm International recently released its newest performance standard, ANSI/INFOCOMM 3M-2011 Projected Image System Contrast Ratio. The voluntary standard seeks to define acceptable minimum contrast ratios for projected images, relative to their application, for both installed systems and live events.
In AV, most of us like to turn up the volume. But when you hear everything, sometimes you miss out on the part of the message that is just for you.
Despite the recent recession and continued challenges to the world economy, the digital signage sector has enjoyed stellar growth for the past several years.
Fiber-optic networks are showing up in AV installs at an increasing rate, driven by the need to transport a large amount of audio, video and data over a long distance.
An examination of how AV technology standards are helping people with physical limitations to enjoy more interactive and safe experiences in everday life.
Cloud computing is a term that the AV industry is hearing more often these days, especially as cloud-based services are making appearances in both commercial and residential AV installs.
There are many reasons why smart building technologies (SBT) are a growing trend in the design and construction industry — lower costs, higher efficiency and sustainability, to name a few.
This report from the attendees of InfoComm International®’s 2009 InfoComm 100 meeting discusses the industry’s current conditions and trends.
Report discusses the standard occupational classification (SOC) code and its application to the audiovisual field; the concept of "apprenticeship" and its affect on the audiovisual industry, including work that is covered by prevailing rate of wage statutes; and the connection between apprenticeship and licensure and the relationship between certification and licensure.
This report considers and analyzes business trends related to AV/IT convergence, and the impact of those trends on the future of the AV industry.
Video communication is increasingly common throughout legal systems worldwide. It spans facilities and applications, including video arraignment from jail, virtual visitation in prisons, and remote testimony in courtrooms and judges’ chambers.
“The ability to send HDMI video, infrared remote control, RS-232 and Ethernet traffic over the same cable at the same time lures AV integrators to use HDBaseT products,” according to Jack Gershfeld of Altinex. Read [Link TK] why HDBaseT may be considered a Swiss Army knife for the AV industry in the latest special report from Tim Kridel.
Live Events Professional
International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) and InfoComm International® have partnered to offer training to IA members to expand their AV knowledge base: Audiovisual Fundamentals for Stagehands, InfoComm Recognized AV Technologist Certificate Program designed for stagehands making the transition to audiovisual jobs; CTS Prep class designed to boost confidence before taking the Certified Technology Specialist™ (CTS®) exam.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is one of the most talked-about technologies influencing organizations today. But the pro AV industry has a special relationship with the IoT, dating back decades to when network ports started appearing on AV devices and enabling a new paradigm of management, control and insight.General Knowledge
The writing is on the wall: Streaming must be a regular component of AV professionals’ technology arsenals, particularly if they work the live-events beat.
It’s not ‘InfoComm East;’ it’s completely unique. InfoComm Connections New York, Nov. 11-12 at Manhattan’s Javits Convention Center, aims to bring a taste of the big June show to an audience that might not normally partake. Who will you meet there? What could you learn? Get a feel for the new show in this special preview.
It’s been more than three years since the United States threw the metaphorical switch that transitioned the country from analog to digital broadcasting. In the process, it created a controversy around what are called “white spaces” – the radio-frequency (RF) spectrum that acts as a buffer between TV channels, and forced AV pros out of a popular frequency range.