Commercial Integrator + Security Sales Jan/Feb 2024 - 33

for integration businesses, as clients
moved away from hardware-based videoconferencing
and codecs and turned
to UC platforms. Previously, Stanley
recalls, separate control devices might
be required for lighting, shades and
temperature. Today, the option exists
for the room control system to operate
within a separate tab or second screen
on Zoom, Teams and Google Meet via
a control system API. " Our clients can
enjoy the experience of Zoom, " Stanley
says. " But, when you tab over, you
can turn the lights on, raise and lower
shades, change the temperature or
switch sources. "
Greenblatt underscores that the
" walled gardens " and " closed ecosystems "
of the past are now opening up
thanks to API integration. Regardless of
the preferred control system, hardware
or software, UC platforms can now operate
seamlessly.
" They need to be interoperable, "
Greenblatt says, " so a third-party product
doesn't just work with one control
platform - it works with several. " He
explains that this is another trend that
has emerged since the pandemic.
Replicable Solutions
With open API integration so prevalent
today, Greenblatt says that he is also
seeing a trend toward replicable systems
with field-configurable programming.
" Minor variations that exist from room
to room do not require programming
changes, " he says. " The result is a singular
code set for a majority of the typical
room types. We are seeing a desire to
have fewer one-off, bespoke systems. "
This aligns with the earlier point about
standardization and consistency from
space to space.
Production Quality
Experiences
Maintaining consistency within a corporate
building or education campus
certainly does not mean today's systems
are boring or that they lack features.
Employees' demand for seamless experiences
has led The Farm AV to push the
envelope on what today's control systems
and devices can accomplish.
" Rather than that simple, one-camera
shot [that is] looking down a boardroom
table with six or eight people sitting
there, " Stanley begins, " they want
to have a better visual experience. " He
notes the rise in requests for multicamera
automation. " During the
pandemic, you were face to face with
everybody, " Stanley points out. " Now,
you go back to the conference room,
and you can barely see if a person's
mouth is moving - let alone see their
facial expressions. " He continues,
" People have been trying to find a way
to fill that gap. "
Automatic Camera
Preset Recall
Both interviewees attest that they're
seeing more requests to bring microphone
and camera solutions together via
the control system. Automatic Camera
Preset Recall, a feature in Q-SYS control
systems, uses beam-forming microphones
to pinpoint the person talking.
The microphone then sends a signal to
the control system, which triggers camera
automation. " Not only is the audio
system able to single out the person who
is speaking and filter out the background
noise, but the camera system is also
tracking, " Stanley explains.
Presenter Tracking
Integrators can take a visual approach
to camera automation following
Crestron's acquisition of 1 Beyond.
Data from the camera connected to a
1 Beyond processor is used to track the
presenter, even as they walk across the
room. " It's not using acoustic cues to
recall presets, " Stanley explains. " It's
using visual processing to identify and
capture that person. "
Swiss company Seervision works
with Q-SYS control systems to deliver
similar functionality. Stanley says,
" You can upload pictures of the CEO,
and it will use [facial] detection to give
someone priority or caption images on
the screen. "
By connecting the cameras in a conference
room to either control system using
these products, it's also possible to turn
on or dim spotlights, have lights follow
presenters, or focus on a whiteboard or
podium. " The advantages are being able
to frame a presenter as they walk around
a room, " Stanley explains. " You can [also]
create these exclusion and inclusion
zones. If a person walks too far to the left,
the camera's not going to track them to
that space. The camera will zoom back
and give you a wide shot. "
Screen Equity
One thing that goes hand-in-hand
with a production quality, cinematicfeeling
experience is the concept of
screen equity. " There's a feeling that, if
you're calling in remote, you've got a lot
more screen time, " Stanley explains.
He cites a recent boardroom installation,
completed by The Farm AV, in
which every seat had a 14-inch monitor
and camera. " Everybody on the far side
was able to see everybody's face on the
screen individually, " Stanley recalls.
" We're seeing a lot of this push to get
more advanced with the way we capture
all the local participants. " The same
room uses additional cameras and microphones
trained on a podium, whiteboard,
each side of the table, as well as
the CEO's seat. Based on acoustic cues,
the far-side view switches automatically
to show the images.
AI Under the Hood
Reflecting on the growing role of
in-room control systems and devices,
Stanley says, " Everybody is asking for
some level of automation. " Although
control systems, programming and
peripheral technology all play a part,
Stanley says that none of it would be
possible without recent advances in
artificial intelligence. " It's embedded in
a lot of what's happening now, " he adds,
noting that AI helps route data across
the network to maintain the quality of
service. " As service providers, we don't
typically interact with AI, but we see
it in this level of automation, " he says.
" We couldn't be where we are today -
the [current] state of AV and control
- without it. " CI
Jan/Feb 2024 | Commercial Integrator+Security Sales & Integration
33

Commercial Integrator + Security Sales Jan/Feb 2024

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Commercial Integrator + Security Sales Jan/Feb 2024 - Bellyband1
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