Setting up an intercom system for the first time in any facility can seem overwhelming, even for the most seasoned technical staff member. The advent of digital, wireless and now IP technology for intercoms has flooded the marketplace with a plethora of solutions, making it somewhat challenging to determine which will be the right fit for your space. Making this task easier involves a solid understanding of what intercom is, what makes it the right tool for professional communications and what to consider before installation.
What Is Intercom?
In simplest terms, intercom is a dedicated communications infrastructure. Unlike two-way radio, intercom systems offer full-duplex communication, which makes the experience of using them to talk much more like having a natural conversation. During busy production periods, such as just before a major holiday service, this feature really comes in handy, as you don’t have to grapple with the additional stress of communicating in a new and unfamiliar way.
Another important feature of any quality intercom system is the support of multiple functional groups. This lets you divide your communications into different channels, adding significant efficiency to the workflow. Lighting staff can talk on one channel, the sound guys on the second channel, and graphics and editing on another, for example. It cuts down on unnecessary and potentially distracting chatter during production.
Most of today’s intercom systems can also be used to connect production staff to other important areas in the worship facility – anything from service audio, the telephone system to the PA system. Everyone truly is connected.
Why Use Intercom?
The answer to this question is that form follows function. Intercom was invented to solve live production requirements. It is designed specifically for the challenges and situations inherent to this type of environment.