Audio in Video Conferencing – Its importance and relevance
One of the most effective and efficient ways through which companies communicate in modern times is through Video Conferencing. It not only helps in promoting better face to face interaction, but also helps to bring down travel costs, and thereby increase productivity and profitability. Though video plays an important role in conferencing, the significance of clear audio can never be neglected. Issues of audio can completely affect the quality of video conferencing thereby obstructing effective communication. What are the major issues of audio in video conferencing? How do companies tackle such issues? Let us have a look.
Reasons for Poor Audio Quality During Video Conferences
Cross Talking: The main reason companies opt for video conferencing is that it makes everyone involved feel as if they are in the same room. This feeling of oneness is the main advantage of video conferencing. But cross talking can be the main issue if the conference involves many people logging in from different locations. Moreover, some video conferencing systems are so outdated that they allow either talking or listening and does not allow both at the same time. In such a situation, the audio becomes jumbled when more than one participant talks at the same time.
Background noise: Background noise is an unavoidable and one of the main causes of poor audio clarity. Though video conferencing is meant to be conducted in a quiet and distraction free environment, it becomes impossible nowadays. When people login from different devices that too from outside the office, it becomes rather difficult to regulate the background noise
Soft speakers: Most of the companies have large conference rooms with most modern design and large conference tables. But such rooms are effective only if the room has large speakers to disperse the sound evenly throughout the room. But, in a large conference room if soft speakers are used then the clarity of the audio will be affected.
Echo and audio reflection: Having a large conference room with state of the art technology creates a good impression in the mind of the employees and clients. It is proof that the company takes the communication and conferencing seriously. But the technology adopted by the company should fit the size of the room and the furniture used in it. In case the conference room has a high ceiling and large conference tables, then the chances of echo and audio reflection are very high. This inadvertently affects the quality of video conferencing.
Solutions for Audio problems
The benefits of video conferencing are affected if the audio clarity is poor. But there are different ways to overcome this.
Clearly defined structure: Even if the technology used is highly advanced, cross talking still continues to be a major problem in video conferencing. This problem of cross talk can be reduced if the company has a clear and structured video conferencing policy.
Educating the employees: Educating the employees helps to overcome the poor audio clarity to some extent. The employees can be requested to login from a quiet environment. If it is not possible then they can be advised to use the mute function on their microphone so that the background sounds are not audible.
Use technology to alleviate audio issues: There are many technologies that help to overcome audio issues in video conferencing. For eg; Acoustic treatments help to tackle audio issues in large conference spaces. Isolation platforms, diffusors, sound barriers, and absorbers can also be used to check the echo and audio reflection inside the conference room.
Use a quality microphone: Using a quality microphone in video conferencing not only helps in improving the clarity of audio but also helps in cutting down background noise. Ensure to choose a model with noise cancellation and dynamic range control. Both these features serve to provide a consistent and clear audio quality without crackling and unnecessary background noise.
There are both a wired and wireless model conference microphone in our range that have these amazing features. To view the Angekis range of speakers click here: http://www.liquiddigital.com.au/speaker-mics
Wired or wireless
Which brings me to the next topic, whether to choose a wired or wireless solution? Budget generally pays a large part in this decision as well as functionality in the room environment. No one wants to be drowning in messy cables, especially along a boardroom table. The Angekis ASP-4 connects wirelessly via RF signal meaning you don’t have to re-connect your speakers (like you do with Bluetooth) every time you want to conference.
Though the video functionality is the main reason for success in video conferencing, the role of audio cannot be ignored. The issues with audio can completely affect the very purpose of video conferencing. By educating employees and participants on the best practices of video conferencing, companies can overcome most of the major issues related to audio quality.