Do you know how to set up a room for a video conference? The way you set up your conference room heavily affects your video conference quality. Following, we are going to give you some brief guidelines on how to set up your conference room depending on your budget and needs.
1. Prep the Room
A conference room doesn’t need windows (outside or inside). If you can, refrain from pointing the lens toward the windows. If you can’t do this, then get a camera-friendly cloth blind. It will minimize lighting and other distractions to improve acoustics. You can improve the acoustics a bit more if you use a reliable video conferencing tool like Roundee.
Diffused lighting is better than direct lighting. Direct lighting creates an inconsistent on-screen image. Try to paint the room in neutral palettes and avoid hanging any artwork, especially in the camera’s field of view. Blue and grey color palettes are an excellent choice as they give off a pleasant contrast.
2. Camera Height and Location
When it comes to a one-screen conference room, it’s best to place the camera above the display, near the middle. For a two-screen system, the camera is best placed between displays, near the middle, to help with eye contact. You should install the display properly so the bottom of the image is just above the conference table’s height.
Ceiling microphones are ideal for large rooms. Table microphones will pick up noises such as paper shuffling or finger taps, so it’s best to avoid them. It’s a rule of thumb to use one microphone for every two participants. If you can’t use only one microphone, it’s best to place them in the middle of the table so everyone’s input can be recorded.
Most conference rooms have long and narrow tables but these are not ideal for video conferencing. An oval table can help the participants face the display without having to move much. Chairs with high backs may block other participants, so try to find ones with low backs. If only a few people participate in a meeting, it’s best for them to be seated close together. This way, they will be visible with the camera zoomed in to make everyone as large as possible on screen.
5. Data Collaboration
Data sharing in a one-screen system can be handled via monitors on the table. You can share data on the same screen if you fix the codecs, but make sure everyone else participating in the conference is able to view this data. A second display should be installed above the first one. A camera should separate both of them. This setup lets the participants scan the video conference to data and back. This way, their gaze will cross the plane of camera capture.
In the two-screen system, video is shown on one screen while data is shared on the other. Document cameras and interactive whiteboards better are placed within the camera’s field of view. This way, if one of the participants is at the whiteboard, they can give the presentation and remain in the scene.