Don’t Make These 10 AV Design Mistakes!

Posted by / November 13, 2015

If you’re an architect, CTO, or CIO, it’s important to find the perfect audiovisual system for your room. You need a total solution that integrates seamlessly with the room. What does it take to make that happen?


Well, there are a lot of factors to consider. Whether you’re designing a meeting room, boardroom, or classroom, the decisions can be overwhelming.

We have lots of experience designing, installing, and servicing mission-critical AV builds. If you need AV design, contact us today for a free consultation. 

It’s difficult to design the exact audiovisual solution you need without industry expertise. To help you out, we’ve come up with some critical mistakes in AV design. Avoid these and you’ll be ahead of the game!

  1. Waiting to think about AV
    Q: When should I start thinking about my room’s AV?A: As soon as possible!

    In order to have the best AV experience, it’s important to consider your AV needs at the beginning. If at all possible, architects need to consider AV needs during room design, before construction.

    If you don’t want to go through the expensive process of retrofitting a room for your AV needs, you need to consider your cabling requirements for power, audio, visual, and network access. And you can’t be sure of those exact requirements until you’ve decided on a system that’s perfect for your room and your AV budget.

  2. Choosing the wrong display
    Everyone knows that display size matters. But one common misconception is that bigger is always better. It’s not! The key is to match the display to your room’s size and purpose.Display size isn’t necessarily the most important factor. Just as much thought should go into deciding which type of display is best. LCD? LED? Rear projection? Front? It all depends on your budget, your needs for the room, and the display’s environment. Which leads us to…
  3. Ignoring lighting concerns
    Lighting directly impacts display quality. Ideally, you should customize the room’s lighting for your visual display needs and the purpose of the room. The more versatile your needs for the room, the more important these concerns become.Location, color, and type of light source are also crucial details to consider, as is the range of the light source and its brightness. You’ll also want to decide if the lighting can be easily dimmed, how the lighting controls will be programmed, where those controls should be located for usability.
  4. Improper audio support
    Don’t forget the ‘A’ in AV! The selection and arrangement of microphones and speakers are just as important in your AV system as the visual aspect. Decide if you need mics and speakers in the room in the first place. If you do, it’s important to choose the type and quantity which can provide optimal audio quality without overloading your budget.One common mistake in a videoconferencing setup is fixing the microphone right under the camera. It’s nearly impossible to get a good audio feed that way. You should keep in mind that you will likely need multiple mics carefully arranged to pick up multiple voices in a wide area, and you may need a similar arrangement of speakers as well.
  5. Losing control
    Poor usability is a big frustration of poorly designed AV systems. You’ll want an easy-to-use control system to operate all lighting, audio, and visual components. A well-designed control system also allows for room automation, making it easy for you to use the system to its fullest potential.When choosing a control system, it is especially important to keep in mind who will be using the room most and for what purpose. Synergy CT programs your control system with an intuitive graphic user interface to eliminate any hassle. That way, you can be free to focus on what matters most—doing business.
  6. Forgetting Furniture
    Furniture is an often-overlooked aspect of AV design. Please don’t forget the role furniture plays in the functionality of your room! Is that table the right size for a videoconferencing set up? Does it need cable raceways? Equipment pop-ups? Does the shape and color of the furniture compliment the room’s design? It should. When chosen well, your furniture should be both comfortable and functional, promoting an enjoyable and productive environment.It may seem like a small detail, but furniture is a critical aspect of the room’s “feel” and usability. You will notice a big difference between a room with poorly chosen furniture and one with furniture that functions well with the AV system and compliments the design of your meeting place, conference room, or visualization space. You and your team can only benefit from purposefully designed furniture for your AV system.
  7. No Remote Control
    In addition to a control system that is easy to use, it may be helpful for you to consider remote control options to improve usability of audio, visual, and lighting components. You need to consider whether a wireless system or a wired one would work best. Which aspects of the control system need to be accessible remotely?  And of course, these controls should be intuitive and user-friendly.
  8. Fail to scale
    Mission-critical AV applications often depend on a system that can process various audio and video inputs without sacrificing image or sound quality. If your AV system is mission-critical, you’ll need a system that can work seamlessly with multiple input types and output at the highest possible fidelity.A good scaler can process any input signal and convert it to any output, providing consistent, high-quality audio and video in any scenario. If you need power, flexibility, and superior signal quality for mission-critical AV, don’t forget to scale!
  9. Improper wiring
    Most, if not all, AV systems will incorporate multiple input sources wired to multiple destinations. For that reason, it’s important to plan out wiring as early in the process as possible.Examine your budget and design goals to determine the best way to share and connect in your room. Then you can determine your wiring design. Wiring installation is more difficult to retrofit in a completed room, so try to identify your wiring needs—such as floor coring for power cables—before construction, if possible.
  10. DIY AV
    The final AV design mistake on our list is trying to do it all yourself. We hope this guide has helped you understand some of the basic considerations of the AV design process. In summary, a team of professional AV system specialists has the knowledge and experience to tailor your room to your exact design goals. It takes an expert to make an excellent system.If you need a professional AV system designed for your specific mission-critical needs, the team at Synergy CT is here to help. You can find case studies highlighting some of our previous work here.

    Contact us today for a free consultation!

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