Dorset Sound & Communications
Sound system design for the 21st Century
The Talker. Public speaking.
I would like to cover a part of sound reinforcement that is very critical to the overall performance of the system. The best microphone in the world will not compensate for a weak voice. Sound mans’ adage: You can’t amplify what isn’t there.
In the design of our systems, we take into account the likelihood of inexperienced people using the system, and as such, we usually specify high quality, highly sensitive condenser type microphones for the pulpits and lecterns. However, a little direction will save you from many headaches.
Make a point to talk to the first-time speaker. Tell them to speak clearly and confidently at the lectern. If the subject is important, speak it out. In theater actors are told to project to the last row. It is a common misconception among people that if there is a sound system in the room, then they only have to speak barely above a whisper and the system will do the rest. This is not true. Any sound system requires a certain level of sound to function properly. You, as the operator, can always turn up the mic input on the mixer if the person is not speaking loudly enough, but be careful. By doing this, you will greatly increase the possibility of feedback.
Encourage your users to speak out. Speak to the last row. Speak like what they are about to say is vital to their listeners.