Royal Society installs Microflex systems
Tuesday, 25 August 2020
royal-societyAudio quality is paramount across the Society’s facilities
UK - The Royal Society, Carlton House in London is the oldest scientific academy in continuous existence and home to over 1,600 of the world’s most revered scientists. Its aim is to recognise, promote and support excellence in the field of science.
With regular meetings held between Council members, important committee discussions and the hiring of space within the building for external clients, audio quality is paramount across the Society. So, when the need came to upgrade the existing system, The Royal Society selected a company that reflected its own reputation and global recognition for excellence, choosing Shure Microflex Advance MXA910 (MXA) and Microflex Complete Wireless (MXCW).
Three rooms were chosen for the upgrade, with the MXCW system installed in the Council room and the MXA910 system within the conference/boardroom and the main 300-seat lecture theatre, the Welcome Trust Lecture Hall.
Tasked with overseeing the project, Liam Helm, AV services manager, The Royal Society, explained what was initially required from the systems:
“The MXCW system was needed primarily for audio capture in the Council room, particularly when remote participants join by VC or phone. It has a fixed oval table and had previously used fixed microphones for Voice Lift to help with members who needed assisted hearing. The MXCW replaced the older system, with a view to using the system in other rooms if necessary.
“The roving system fulfils a need where we often have external clients requesting push-to-talk microphones - we frequently hired them in, so having our own made sense. This was sometimes just because the client wanted them, but also we'd hire in to be able to record boardroom style meetings (most of the mics/PA in these spaces are configured for theatre style scenarios, though as they are flexible in layout they were often used for boardroom/cabaret as well) and we hired them quite often when we had boardroom style events requiring simultaneous translation.
“For the conference room an MXA910 is installed, set to a number of pre-sets to capture audio around different boardroom setups which feeds a NUC PC endpoint running Teams/Zoom, albeit in a room that's not your typical VC enabled room (large, high ceiling etc). It has performed really well, particularly in a round of committees that meet annually to elect the current year's Fellows. They meet in two rounds in January and March and in March, as COVID was gathering pace, it really proved its worth as an increasing number of committee members could not travel so they joined via video conferencing.
“The other MXA910 is in our main 300-seat lecture theatre. My hope here is to use it for voice reinforcement in chat show and coffee-table-style panel discussions, as an alternative to putting lavalier microphones on participants, especially when faced with back-to-back panel sessions and little time to swap microphones in the middle of a session.”

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