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5 Pieces of Video Conferencing Hardware for Meeting Room Collaboration

It’s no secret that video con­fer­enc­ing has become a fun­da­men­tal com­mu­ni­ca­tion tool for busi­ness­es around the world.  Essen­tial for col­lab­o­ra­tion between part­ners, cus­tomers and col­leagues; the tech­nol­o­gy has quick­ly grown from its ear­ly adopter stage to today’s form of mass mar­ket dissemination.

So, what is video con­fer­enc­ing and how is it used in meet­ing spaces?  In its sim­plest form, video con­fer­enc­ing is an online meet­ing between two par­ties where each par­ty has vis­i­bil­i­ty to the oth­er and can lis­ten and inter­act with them in real time.


Video con­fer­enc­ing can hap­pen in two ways; either point-to-point, or mul­ti-point com­mu­ni­ca­tion.  Point-to-point video-enabled meet­ings are when one per­son or group is con­nect­ed to anoth­er.  The indi­vid­ual or par­ty often uses hard­ware such as a lap­top or a desk­top with an inte­grat­ed cam­era and micro­phone or a room-based solu­tion where the video con­fer­enc­ing equip­ment is sta­tion­ary to that setting.

Mul­ti-point video con­fer­enc­ing is sim­i­lar to point-to-point in terms of hard­ware but enables three or more loca­tions to be con­nect­ed togeth­er.  All video call par­tic­i­pants can see, speak, and lis­ten to each oth­er dur­ing the ses­sion, as well as share con­tent if need­ed.  Users have a “grid” view of the entire group on the call. Using a tech­nol­o­gy called voice acti­vat­ed switch­ing (or VAS), the sys­tem dis­tin­guish­es who the speak­er is and dis­plays a larg­er image of that per­son on the screen.

If you are think­ing about incor­po­rat­ing a video con­fer­enc­ing solu­tion for meet­ing room use, you might be won­der­ing how to get start­ed.  What are the basics when it comes to video con­fer­enc­ing hard­ware?  Lever­ag­ing a video con­fer­enc­ing sys­tem in your con­fer­ence room requires a few essen­tial pieces of video con­fer­ence call equipment.

When DIY-ing Isn’t The Answer

Think­ing about a DIY video con­fer­ence sys­tem for your meet­ing room? You may want to think again.

Yes, you can buy some equip­ment on the inter­net. But, is it worth sac­ri­fic­ing reli­a­bil­i­ty, pro­fes­sion­al­ism and user experience?

Audio visu­al sys­tems, like meet­ing room video con­fer­enc­ing solu­tions, are designed by pro­fes­sion­al audio­vi­su­al engi­neers who under­stand the tech­nol­o­gy options, sys­tem design stan­dards, and how tech­nol­o­gy fits with­in your work­flow. What does this all add up to? A team that can design a sys­tem which takes into account unique room fea­tures and func­tion­al­i­ty. Pro­fes­sion­al inte­gra­tors work exten­sive­ly with video con­fer­enc­ing plat­forms and have the knowl­edge need­ed to select tech­nolo­gies and plan a sys­tem. That means you get a solu­tion with fea­tures that sup­port your busi­ness’s work­flow with­out wast­ing the time and mon­ey asso­ci­at­ed with DIY tri­al and error, which often leads to low reli­a­bil­i­ty, dif­fi­cul­ty com­mu­ni­cat­ing and nests of tan­gled cords.

Gen­er­al­ly, a video con­fer­enc­ing solu­tion involves but is not lim­it­ed to the following:


Cam­era or Webcam

Micro­phone & Speakers

Codec Unit

Con­trol Panel

In short, the solu­tion requires five basic pieces of video con­fer­enc­ing hard­ware and a soft­ware pro­gram, such as Skype for Busi­ness or Zoom, to tie every­thing togeth­er.  Each piece of this sys­tem plays a major role in your con­fer­ence room AV strat­e­gy. These dis­parate tech­nolo­gies are com­mon­ly man­u­fac­tured by dif­fer­ent com­pa­nies. An audio visu­al inte­gra­tion com­pa­ny will enable each piece of video con­fer­enc­ing equip­ment to work togeth­er, cre­at­ing a pos­i­tive meet­ing expe­ri­ence for the users.

The first piece of video con­fer­enc­ing hard­ware is the dis­play. The dis­play acts as a “win­dow,” and allows you to see the par­ty you are com­mu­ni­cat­ing with.  In a busi­ness envi­ron­ment, it is best to use pro­fes­sion­al grade HD LCD Dis­plays in your con­fer­ence room or board­room.  Depend­ing on how you want to use your video con­fer­enc­ing sys­tem, your inte­gra­tor may rec­om­mend a sec­ond dis­play to allow for con­tent shar­ing while still view­ing far-end participants.

The cam­era allows the group you are com­mu­ni­cat­ing with to see your team.  This is mount­ed either above or below the dis­play depend­ing on where par­tic­i­pants will be in the room (your AV inte­gra­tor can pro­vide a rec­om­men­da­tion on cam­era loca­tion).  The goal is to make the expe­ri­ence as nat­ur­al as possible.

Users will com­mu­ni­cate with the oth­er par­ty via their micro­phone and speak­ers. This can be incor­po­rat­ed into a sin­gle piece of hard­ware or stand-alone tech­nolo­gies for large con­fer­ence rooms.

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A Codec (com­pres­sion/de-com­pres­sion device) takes audio or video feed, com­press­es and trans­mits the data over a net­work.  The Codec can be a piece of hard­ware or soft­ware depend­ing on use and com­pat­i­bil­i­ty.  Again, your AV inte­gra­tor can dis­cuss options, pros and cons of dif­fer­ent plat­forms and pro­vide a rec­om­men­da­tion that aligns with your busi­ness needs.

Last is the con­trol pan­el, which con­trols the room. It lets you start a con­fer­ence, adjust the vol­ume, and share your screen. It may inte­grate with a sched­ul­ing sys­tem and fea­ture a push-to-join option, or users can type in the meet­ing num­ber on the inter­face to join the call.

Video con­fer­enc­ing can bring col­leagues, cus­tomers, and busi­ness­es togeth­er no mat­ter the dis­tance.  It helps remote employ­ees feel more con­nect­ed and has also been known to increase meet­ing pro­duc­tiv­i­ty over­all.  Fur­ther­more, video con­fer­enc­ing reduces trav­el costs for many busi­ness­es and enables teams to feel bet­ter engaged dur­ing meet­ings.  So, why not make the most out of your meetings?

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At Neurilink, our video conference solutions will help your team stay productive while bolstering your company’s professional presence.

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