The Complete Guide To The Types of Audio Visual Equipment

Whether you’re hosting a large-scale conference, an award ceremony or a public speaking event, you’ll know how important it is to ensure that your event is planned to perfection down to the very last detail. 

While those details are no doubt essential, it’s even more imperative to make sure that you have the basics sorted well in advance of your event. Choosing your perfect venue and arranging the schedule of the day, of course, go without saying.  However, it’s also worthwhile to think about what audio-visual equipment you will need in advance of your event too. 

Your audio and visual requirements will have a significant impact on a variety of decisions you will need to make. From the venue to your guest speakers, it’s important to think carefully about what technology you will need. To help get you started, we’ve put together some of the best equipment for different types of events. 

Audio Visual Equipment For Conferences

Most conferences follow a similar format. Your guests will usually be seated in a theatre or banquet style (although classroom or u-shapes can be popular too), with your speakers presenting from a stage or area towards one side of the room. 

audio visual equipment for conferences

When choosing your audio-visual equipment, remember that the purpose of conferences is to inform your guests. While there may be activities that your guests partake in (for example, team building or group exercises), the main intent of an event such as this is to help your guests learn more about a particular topic through guest speakers or lecturers. 

With this in mind, it is essential that your audio-visual equipment is clear, easy to see or hear and reliable. You won’t want to skimp on audiovisual equipment hire for this type of event.

Best audio equipment

image of audio visual equipment

PA Systems

PA systems typically include microphones, amplifiers, speakers, mixers and related equipment. They ensure that your speakers can be heard by all your attendees with ease. 

The type of PA system you need for your event will depend on the size of your conference and the venue in which it is held. You may also want to think about your presenter’s preferences. Some, for example, prefer a wireless microphone as it allows them to speak hands-free (which can be helpful if they need to use a remote to control their visuals).

Your venue may have an inbuilt PA system or it is possible to arrange for audio equipment hire too. 

Don’t forget to include induction loop systems in your list of audio equipment, particularly if you know that some of your attendees may be hard of hearing.

Speakers

Speakers are often included in your PA system, but they really are an essential part of your conference set up, which is why we’re mentioning them again. 

When you choose your audio equipment, think about all the different sounds you might need to amplify. For example, will there be audio or visual components included in your guest speakers’ presentations? Do you want any additional music or audio to play elsewhere (for example, during registration or in breakout areas)? All of these will have an impact on the audio equipment you need.

Recording Equipment

You may wish to record your conference audio too. This can be helpful if you want to broadcast your conference content after your event has taken place (for example, as a podcast or video) or use it in future event marketing materials. 

It’s worth considering this ahead of time so that you can arrange for all the necessary equipment to be in place on the day.

Best visual equipment

conference visual equipment

Projectors

Projectors are usually the visual equipment of choice for mid to large conference events. These are typically hooked up to a laptop and project the display onto a projection screen. 

There are a wide variety of projectors out there, so it will be important to choose yours carefully. If you know that your venue has an inbuilt system, it may be worth paying a visit to test the quality. If necessary, hire your own projector system to ensure that your conference attendees can see the screen clearly. After all, there’s nothing worse than a poorly visible presentation when attending a conference.

Projection Screens

As mentioned above, projection screens work in conjunction with projectors. Like with projector equipment, there are a wide variety of projection screens out there. 

When choosing one for your conference, there are a few key elements to think about – the most important of which is the size. Think about how many attendees are planned for your conference and select accordingly. Too small and the display won’t be easily visible from the back. Too large and the display may be overpowering for those near the front.

LED or Plasma Screens

For smaller conference gatherings, a projector and screen may not be necessary. LED or plasma screens (for example, similar to large home televisions) can function well in smaller venues. If your venue doesn’t have this visual technology in the room you choose, it is possible to hire screens like these for your event.

Other Equipment Required

laptops for conference events

Laptops

Along with audio-visual equipment, it’s important not to forget about laptops. You’ll need at least one (if not more!) for your event to run successfully. Remember that cables and adapters can sometimes be problematic, so it may be worth hiring a laptop along with your projector or screen that is purpose-built for events.

Audio Visual Equipment For Award Ceremonies

tpn av hire

Award ceremonies are exciting events and can be a lot of fun to plan. Along with the entertainment, catering and theme décor, it will be important to think about the audio-visual equipment you will need too. These can really make or break an award ceremony event, so be sure to think about your requirements well in advance.

Best Audio Equipment

PA Systems

From announcing the winners to guest speakers, a good PA system is a must for your award ceremony. You may need a variety of different microphones too. For example, your hosts may prefer wireless microphones, with a handheld mic ready for award winners to give their thanks. This may take a bit of coordinating, so talk to your venue about what they’re able to offer you. If necessary, look into audio equipment hire that will support your event requirements.

Be sure that your speaker system is good quality too. You want your award winners able to hear when their name is announced!

di equipment for award ceremonies

DJ Equipment

Award ceremonies are typically followed by a party or similar celebratory event. A good DJ with the right equipment will help your party go off without a hitch. Many DJs bring their own equipment with them but may need tech support or even full systems depending on your venue’s existing set up. 

You may also want music to flow through the ceremony portion of your event. For example, do you want music to play while your winners walk to the stage to collect their award? Separate equipment may be required for this, so speak to your venue or a professional audio-visual equipment supplier to find out exactly what you need.

Best Visual Equipment

Projector And Screens

While some award ceremonies don’t need visual equipment, others are enhanced by a presentation screen. For example, it can be useful to display the names of nominees and the winners on the screen as they’re announced. Equally, you may wish to showcase the work of the winners on-screen as their name is announced. Corporate events often use award ceremonies as an opportunity to talk about business updates too, so a projector screen may be an essential component of an internal awards event. 

Depending on the size of your event, you may choose to use a screen and projector for your visual equipment (these are usually ideal for mid to large scale events). For smaller ceremonies, an LED or plasma screen could work well. 

lighting equipment for award shhows

Lighting

Whether you want disco lighting for the dancefloor or spotlighting for the ceremony itself, lighting is an essential component of your award ceremony audio-visual equipment. These events usually use stage lighting to highlight the hosts and may even use special effects when winners are announced. Think about what you would like for your event and plan accordingly. 

Other Equipment Required

Staging

Audio Visual Equipment, The Complete Guide To The Types of Audio Visual Equipment

Some venues will have an inbuilt stage, but it’s worth bearing in mind that not all of them do – particularly those that are multi-purpose. Stage sections help to add a real sense of occasion to your award ceremony, so it may be worth investigating what other options are available if your venue doesn’t have a stage. It is possible to hire modular stages, which are particularly useful as they allow you to choose the stage size and layout to suit your event. 

Dancefloors

Need the perfect area for your award ceremony attendees to dance the night away? Look for a supplier that can offer temporary dancefloors for your event. These are particularly great for venues that don’t have a suitable dancefloor or to enlarge existing dancefloors

Audio Visual Equipment For Public Speaking Events

Conference stage set and lectern

Whether you’re hosting a company-wide business meeting or a large-scale lecture on your topic of expertise, public speaking events rely on audio-visual equipment for their success. After all, the focus of these events is on the speakers, so you will need all the right equipment to ensure that they can impart their information easily and professionally.

Best Audio Equipment

PA Systems

Your PA system will be the backbone of your event’s success. Think carefully about what you will need. How many guest speakers will you have? Will there be any spontaneous participation by the audience that will require extra microphones? Do you need the facilities to play video or audio from a laptop or other device? 

Whatever your requirements, be sure to speak to your venue in detail about the format of your public speaking event. If necessary, contact a third-party supplier to discuss audio-visual equipment extras that your venue can’t provide.

Best Visual Equipment

Projectors And Screens

Depending on the format of your event, you will likely require a projector and screen to display the visual portion of your speaker’s presentation. Your exact projector requirements will depend on the size of your event. For example, large scale occasions usually will need a high-quality projector and large screen to ensure that all attendees can see the content clearly.

LED / Plasma Screens

Audio Visual Equipment, The Complete Guide To The Types of Audio Visual Equipment

If you intend to host a smaller public speaking event, you may be able to utilise an LCD or plasma screen. These are easy to use and often better suited to smaller venues. If your venue does not have a screen like this, it is possible to hire LED or plasma screens for event purposes.

Other Equipment Required

Display Screens

For public speaking events, it is often helpful to have additional display screens in your venue. These can display content like information on your guest speakers, marketing material for your company or more information about the purpose of your event. 

These are often available to hire as panels, making them a functional and simple option for displaying key information.

Sets & Scenery

To create a professional public speaking event, think about adding sets and scenery help enhance the overall tone of your occasion. Staging panels or conference panels may be right for your event and are available to hire as ‘stock’ options or bespoke set ups. These can often work in conjunction with your audio-visual equipment, creating a seamless experience for your event attendees.

Whatever type of event you’re planning, your audio-visual equipment is essential for ensuring that your occasion runs as smoothly as possible. We hope that our guide to the best types of technology and equipment for different events has helped in your planning phase. If you’d like more advice or want to find out more about the types of audio-visual equipment we can provide you with, contact us for more information.

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