Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

May 13 2015

Ask the AV Professional

Derek Suminski, GMC Communications Committee
Our opening session is in a large ballroom. What do I need to know about the sound quality?

Here’s a question you don’t want to hear from your members and attendees: Did you hear that?

Is there anything more frustrating than not being able to hear what is being said from the podium? Or the panel table? Or on the video you waited all year to see? Large venue audio can make or break the experience that your attendees come away with. Here are some items to consider when deciding between utilizing house sound and a professional sound system brought onsite by your AV team.

Simply stated, house sound is okay when clarity and flexibility are not critical to the outcome of the session. With an overhead system, the sound comes from all directions and doesn't help the audience keep their focus on the stage. The sound will fill the room, but the message won’t have any punch. Ceiling mounted speakers are also susceptible to deterioration and dirt and water damage over time. It would only take one malfunctioning speaker to ruin the experience for a large portion of the audience.

The benefits of using a professional sound system start with the fact that careful planning and cutting edge technology guarantee the audience will experience clear, coherent, balanced sound that will also direct their attention toward the stage. Flexibility is also an important advantage that comes with pro systems. With our mixers, processors, and equalizers, your AV team can ensure quality sound when your presenters may not be experienced and know how to project their voice to a large audience. Last-minute microphone, CD, or presentation audio additions can easily be facilitated without wondering how the sound system will respond.

When it’s crunch time and the show is about to start, reliability is a virtue. Whether it is a high profile speaker that attendees pay to see, or an inexperienced presenter from one of your chapters, you can only expect great sound from great technology.

Derek SuminskiAbout the Author
Derek Suminski is the Vice President of Development for BAV, an award-winning, audio visual rental, staging and production company. Derek has worked for and has traveled extensively with BAV for 19 years and serves on various PCMA and MPI committees. To contact Derek or to learn more about BAV please visit www.bavservices.com.

About the Column
Ask the AV Professional is a bi-monthly feature in the GMC PCMA newsletter. Questions can range from technology to conference planning and anything in between. Questions can be submitted to dsuminski@bavservices.com.