Lending ears – Enhancing customer experiences through audio
Audio in public spaces used to be all about who could blast the sound through loudest. But things have moved on and recent innovations mean the customer experience can be far more than simple bombardment.
Most of us are familiar with the menu driven audio tours that are popular at museums and galleries. But the David Bowie exhibition that’s been running at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image uses a newly developed system created by Sennheiser. The guidePORT system automatically plays the correct piece of audio as a visitor walks towards part of the exhibit.
Each visitor carries a “bodypack”. It holds just two pieces of audio – a welcome message and a closing statement. All other audio is delivered using a sophisticated set of antennae linked to transmitters that are housed in a control room. The antennae act in a similar way to the GPS system used in satellite navigation systems. As a visitor approaches an exhibit the bodypack’s location is sent to the transmitters which then relay the right piece of audio to the device.
It’s not just exhibitions where great sound is needed. Other environments such as town halls and public meeting spaces need solutions that can work under very trying conditions with challenging acoustics and multiple people talking. Local company Jands has been deploying the FreeSpeak II system which, they say offers incredible sound clarity over wireless infrastructure.
Paul Barret from The P.A People installs audio systems for use at corporate AGMs and other events where it can be challenging to deliver high quality sound. He says “All my customers want full duplex to handle shareholders and questions. Two-way radios aren’t a good fit in the corporate environment. The nature of the venues that these events take place in mean you need distributed antennas. FreeSpeak II … has all the functionality of sitting at a desk, but mobile. The other big reason is the sound quality.”
Production Audio Video Technology has worked with a number of churches in creating high quality AV systems that can expand as the church’s needs change.
Tim Oliver, director at Streamstone Audio and Dave Watson from Production Audio Video Technology worked with the C3 church in Canberra to select and then deploy a system that would work in their new greenfield site but could be expanded when a new mezzanine level is added in future.
They chose a QX system combined with QX500 and SB2001 speakers from EAW. As well as fulfilling the current needs, there was enough headroom in the system to accommodate future expansion – an important consideration in any AV implementation project.
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