Creating the perfect audio: Microphone selection

By Craig Heiman May 23, 2022


How we connect with the people around us is impacted so heavily by how well we understand them. In today’s online world, we’re increasingly relying on digital technologies to hear from others and that means that video and audio tools are so crucial in helping us feel connected. 

Video conferencing is the new norm for schools and businesses but there’s nothing worse than technology faltering during those calls. People lose interest quickly and productivity comes to a grinding halt. That’s why selecting a good microphone speaker solution for clear sound keeps the information flowing during those calls and helps the audience stay engaged.

Not all microphones are created equal

Your weekly Zoom and Teams calls can be tough enough to get through without the added distraction of bad audio. It’s not only annoying but it creates a barrier for the audience on the call for moving forward on projects and tasks that need to be clearly communicated.

You want to make sure that you’re selecting a microphone that allows for audience members to hear you as well as they would in person, face-to-face. You’ll need a high-quality microphone to ensure everyone on the call is heard and sounds their best, without muffling or echoing.

Studies show that you can’t always rely on your remote audience to let you know if your own sound is altered or compromised.  Enabling clear sound to the audience is crucial for aiding discussion so it is important to select a high-performing microphone speaker that is powerful enough but also reliable.

A bad microphone can mean the difference between a brilliant idea being actioned or lost entirely because the audience couldn’t understand it or hear it at all. Selecting the right microphone is key to creating online experiences that connect people and make the sharing of ideas easier. But where do you start?

Selecting the right microphone solution

With different options on the market, it can be difficult to determine which microphone is best for your needs. Here is a bit of a breakdown of the two most common categories — tabletop or ceiling microphones.

Tabletop microphones

These might be the easier option for smaller conference rooms or intimate setups as they cover a lot of ground for a relatively small amount of hardware. Breakout rooms or huddle areas would typically be an ideal space to put in a simple, stationary tabletop microphone. 

Traditional speakerphones have been upgraded to a tabletop array microphone which offers a tried and true approach to audio with 360-degree microphones to pick up sound from anywhere in the room, similar to ceiling microphones. We highly recommend the Shure MXA310 and the Yamaha RM-TT.

Ceiling microphones speakers

These have come a long way!  Both in the way of technology and aesthetically. These solutions offer a great, out-of-the-way option for picking up clear audio in a variety of conference room settings. Ceiling microphones can be either mounted or embedded into the ceiling for that extra clean look. Even if your space has high ceilings, some of the latest ceiling microphones still might be the best option to ensure it can isolate all the participant's voices in the room. We highly recommend the Shure MXA920 

For really large spaces, you might consider having multiple ceiling microphones set up to pick up each speaker. Ceiling microphones are the more modern approach to audio and are visually less obtrusive. With this option, you almost forget that you are using a microphone during calls or meetings.

Find your perfect sound

Our ability to collaborate today is only as good as the technology and hardware we use. Clunky, unreliable, and confusing hardware is a big reason most conference room setups fail and leave users resorting back to inefficient options.

Depending on your needs, it might be beneficial to have a mix of both types of microphones for ideal audio. Hybrid workspace models and unique commercial locations require some thought into planning your audio needs, depending on the room’s design environment and function.

AV Planners can help identify the right solutions for your space and applications and give you an audio setup for success. 

Curious to know how your current audio and microphone solutions sound now? 

Contact AV Planners and will help determine the best mic solution. 

If you’re looking for support to enhance the patient experience through technology, AV Planners has proven success in designing and integrating healthcare spaces. Contact AV Planners to learn more about our services. Keep up with the latest news from AV Planners on FacebookLinkedInTwitter, and Instagram. 

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