We can hear you but we can't understand what you are saying

Intelligibility - A loud sound system means nothing if you can't understand what is being said. How many times have you heard a band and you can't separate the words from the background? Worse yet a guest speaker?

 Photo by permission from Chris Walsh

Photo by permission from Chris Walsh

In a recent post by Audio Precision they offer new software to measure intelligibility.

"Measuring speech intelligibility is an important capability for engineers designing and validating a wide range of communication systems, products and components, especially those related to public safety (e.g., police, fire, emergency) where intelligibility is critically important."

I equate good sound to that of a flashlight beam. If you are in a totally dark room with a flashlight, anything in the "beam" of light will be clearly visible. Anything else in the dark room will have a "glow" from the flashlight but with diminished clarity.

A sound system should deliver direct sound to every audience member. If not, some of your audience will be in the "glow" of the sound system, but not able to detect the difference between "sitting" and something much worse.

Importance of speech intelligibility - Audio Precision

The purpose of communication systems is to transmit information via speech. As such, the intelligibility—or comprehensibility—of the transmitted speech is of utmost importance. One of the more precise definitions of intelligibility is the proportion of speech items (words and/or speech sounds) uttered by a talker, and sent via a communication system, that can be recognized by the listener.

Don't accept a sound system that only delivers noise. Insist on quality, direct sound to every audience member. Not just filling the room with noise.

Professional sound systems are "tuned" by experts, many using software similar to what Audio Precision offers.

Meeting planners can not expect the typical in-house-AV supplier to understand any of this. During planning, insist you are able to test, with your ears, every section of the audience's ability to understand the content.

Insist every member of your audience can see and hear. #AudienceAdvocate - Google it

STOP apologizing for the AV at the beginning of your next meeting

What does every audience expect?

The following observations are from more than 20 years supporting large and small events worldwide.

Designation of Events Industry Council (EIC) Certified Meeting Planner “CMP” is no guarantee AV gets the same attention as other event details.

This issue of the #AudienceAdvocate blog is prompted by a recent MPI meeting at the home of the Miami Dolphins Hard Rock Stadium.

Unusual venues have great event opportunities. AV details are ignored just as much as the typical convention hotel or convention center.

 If the bottom of the screen must be 5'6" for everyone to see, what where they thinking? 

If the bottom of the screen must be 5'6" for everyone to see, what where they thinking? 

Every experienced meeting planner knows to pay attention to these “basics.”

  • Comfortable surroundings
  • Temperature, seating, timely schedule, easy access, close parking, clean restrooms
  • Quality food and content
  • Attention to detail with food selection and service
  • Rehearsed meeting presentations
  • Dance band or DJ and appropriate décor ·      

AV details are ignored.

  • Can every audience member see and hear?
  • Screen(s) large enough to read everything from the back of the room
  • Screens high enough (5’6” minimum) to the bottom of each screen
  • Bright projector with backup projector or spare lamp
  • Backup computer with same PowerPoint™ program loaded
  • RF (not Infared) remote control for graphics
  • No ambient light on the screen
  • Minimize ambient noise in the room – air conditioner, adjacent events
  • Blackout drapes on any daylight windows
  • Sound system tested with each speaker to insure proper volume and clarity
 Does the venue know the sun sets at the same time every day in those windows?

Does the venue know the sun sets at the same time every day in those windows?

Until AV is given the same attention as catering, AV will be a stepchild, ignored by even the most seasoned meeting planner.

Missing on every MPI meeting evaluation –

  • How would you rate the - 
    • AV
    • Lighting
    • Sound
    • Could you clearly understand all the presenters?
    • Were you able to read all content on the screens without distraction?

How do avoid apologizing for the AV at the beginning of your next meeting? Add an #AudienceAdvocate to your meeting team.

Please "share" this post with colleagues - Ray Franklin – 702-879-8177  

rfranklin@stageamerica.com 

 

"Nobody ever complained before." WHAT?

 Of course you can't see his face!

Of course you can't see his face!

I am too often surprised when I see a setup like this. 

Why do meeting planners put up with bad decisions from venues? Certainly everyone in this meeting knows they can't see the face of the presenter, the props or award winners brought to stage.

Subscribe and contribute to this blog to add current content from your experiences. Also Facebook #AudienceAdvocate.

Here are some previous entries. Share with co-workers, meeting planners and your AV supplier.

Why challenge venue meeting capacity charts?

Why challenge venue meeting capacity charts?

Why do venues continue to falsely promote room capacity specs? The answer is in why does a car dealer steer you to one particular car that does not represent what you asked for.

THAT IS ALL THEY HAVE TO SELL