Guest blog by Nureva
If you’ve priced out audio conferencing systems for larger spaces, you’ve probably seen how the per-room cost for an installed, customized system for a larger conference room or classroom can range up to $20,000-ish and even higher. Today in our “Are you overspending for audio conferencing?” series, we’ll look at the non-hardware portion of these numbers, i.e., costs for technicians to design, install and fine-tune systems.
The website of one audio installer provides a handy list of the skilled technicians who might be required for installation and the associated tasks for a traditional system. Project managers oversee the project and manage all resources; design engineers choose and configure the right components; certified programmers ensure the various components work together and can be controlled through a user interface; installation technicians get into the ceilings and walls to install the various components; and finally, service personnel provide after-purchase tuning, maintenance and support.
As each of these are skilled roles, it’s not surprising that hourly rates can range from approximately $70/hr for installers to $160/hr for more specialized technicians. You see why installation costs get into the multiple thousands of dollars, fast.
One way to look at the question of whether you are overspending is to ask if you’re getting good value from incurring all those costs. Are these simply costs that must be incurred to get great audio?
But here’s a much more interesting question: What would it be like if you could get great audio but with none of these installation costs? That’s right, none.
It’s possible. In fact, it’s easy.
Just a few years ago, the audio experts, engineers and designers at a company called Nureva looked at the landscape of traditional audio conferencing (as described above) and concluded that this was an industry that was stuck. The big leaps in technology that had removed complexity and cut costs in other sectors (like smart phones, home theatres and hybrid cars) had not happened in audio conferencing. Yet.
The Nureva team made that leap in the form of their signature achievement: Microphone Mist™ technology, which fills a room with thousands of virtual microphones. It provides true full-room microphone coverage from just one integrated microphone and speaker bar for mid-size spaces up to 25′ x 25′ (7.6 x 7.6 m) and or two for larger spaces up to 30′ x 50′ (9.1 x 15.2 m).
The implications for installation of this new technology versus traditional systems are profound. Instead of hiring multiple technicians to execute an invasive, days-long installation of complex components, with Nureva, hanging each microphone and speaker bar on the wall is a simple DIY job that takes about 30 minutes per device.
And those other expensive roles required for traditional systems, like design engineers and certified programmers? With Nureva, they’re made redundant by advanced software with features like continuous autocalibration that automatically optimizes your audio no matter how the room is configured or what it is used for.
So when it comes to installation, the question is not whether you are overspending, the question is whether you should be spending at all. And that’s a pretty easy choice to make.