The New Face of Event AV


Highly stressful! Two words that ring true for many that are tasked with arranging an event and often complemented by two more that can often create a feeling of total terror – audio visual.

Practically every modern-day event, be it a conference, meeting, dinner or maybe an exhibition will have some requirement for a level of AV support.

This may range from a simple projector and screen or a small PA set-up to a full-blown production with set, staging, lights sound and vision. For many this can potentially be a minefield that can only be successfully navigated with the help of a professional AV partner.

To make matters worse events of all types are increasingly adopting the power of digital technology to provide raised levels of engagement and interactivity. With the rapid rise in the number of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets and the proliferation of ‘apps’ for them, it comes as little surprise that recent industry research has indicated that events of all types are becoming more interactive and reliant on engagement.

Only a few years ago, audiences were only just becoming used to handling interactive voting pads, whereas now, the average participant attends an event complete with 2-3 internet enabled devices!

Providing support to organisations and guiding them through their event journey to achieve their key objectives falls to the expertise of a reputable, professional audio visual supplier.

Adam Pike, Head of Events for UK-based event technical services provider Saville Audio Visual explains: “the landscape of events is evolving quite dramatically and we are being asked more frequently to provide comprehensive digital solutions to enhance the ‘core AV’ requirements of clients. Conceptual set design highlighted with creative lighting design combined with powerful, pin-sharp projection plus crystal clear audio all add to the impact on an event, but digital technologies have unlocked the door to raising the engagement and understanding for audiences. The immediate advantages to businesses and brands are more effective audience communication with better engagement and the ability to turn a passive audience into a motivated audience.”

So, what does the future hold?

Increasingly the use of personal mobile devices at events is quickly becoming the norm so what is the next digital metamorphosis? Enter the phrase ‘internet of things’ – the ability for devices of all types to be able to communicate with one another.

Combine this with the early forays into Augmented and Virtual Reality and it is clear to see that we are on the edge of the next digital revolution. Events that incorporate the ‘point and shoot’ augmented experience where users use their device’s in-built camera and network connection to visualise extended content are already in existence. Hiding in the wings are the head mounted displays from the likes of Google, Microsoft, Samsung, HTC and Occulus, waiting to flood the consumer market and in turn, drive change in the event space.

Initially think gamification but ultimately immersive, interactive presentations in a virtual, collaborative space.

“Already we have seen the typical brief from clients for AV equipment change quite dramatically. More and more emphasis is being put on technology that creates a lasting impression on attendees whilst generating motivation to engage. Bespoke HD content, advanced LED displays and projection mapped 3D sets are in there along with tablets, Twitter walls and social media enabled vending machines. With the arrival of AR no doubt glasses and headsets will be set to appear” continues Adam.

“For organisations of all types, the benefits of incorporating digital solutions into the audio visual mix at events can be enormous and increasingly clients are realising the true potential and impact that this ‘new AV’ can provide” concludes Adam.

Saville Audio Visual is the UK’s longest established provider of audio visual technical services to the Conference & Live Events sector.

A passion for excellence combined with unrivalled technical expertise ensures award winning, innovative, creative and professional audio visual solutions for events on any scale. Contact the Saville team for advice and support for your next event – digital or not!

Adam Parry
Author: Adam Parry

Adam is the co-founder and editor of Adam, a technology evangelist also organises Event Tech Live, Europe’s only show dedicated to event technology and the Event Technology Awards. Both events take place in November, London.