Going hybrid is a great choice, but if you miss arranging the right hybrid meeting equipment, you risk losing the synergy between your virtual audience and on-site participants.
So let’s learn about the equipment needed to host glitch-free hybrid meetings and conferences.
Audio equipment needed for your hybrid event
A bad video quality isn’t as repelling as poor audio. Your attendees will still stick with you if you have a grainy video, but grainy audio would compel them to drop off the meeting.
Getting your audio equipment in place is the most challenging part of planning your hybrid meetings. Why? Because you have to ensure that your on-site and online attendees can hear each other clearly.
Check out these items to set up your Zoom and hybrid meeting equipment for top-notch audio.
Conference speakers are designed to pick up and relay vocal frequencies clearly, without background noises. Thus, they offer a sturdy all-in-one audio solution for your hybrid meetings, whether you’re hosting them on Zoom or any other platform.
Simply connect a Bluetooth or wired conference speaker with your laptop, and place it in the center of your conference table.
Here’s a Bluetooth speaker that could work for small hybrid meetings: Calisto 7200 speakerphone
Dedicated microphones and audio mixers.
In a large conference, a single conference speaker might not be enough to pick up the vocal frequencies from the far-flung corners of the room. Thus, it would make sense to have dedicated microphones for each section or individual participants.
A mixer can combine the audio from multiple microphones into a single channel and feed it straight to your laptop or desktop.
Our pick: BOYA BY M1 microphone with 6m long cable.
If you plan on enabling people to speak on a podium, then a pop filter might enhance the experience by reducing the background noise and plosives picked up from the microphone.
Remote attendees could also use pop filters to reduce audio fluctuations and plosives during their calls.
Our pick: Neewer professional pop-filter
If you considered investing in an audio mixer from our previous recommendation, you could also consider keeping separate headphones for the in-person attendees in the meeting room.
A mixer would allow you to plug in audio from multiple audio sources and stream audio to multiple speakers or headphones simultaneously. Your in-person attendees would have a better listening experience with headphones.
Our pick: Logitech headphones with mic
Line-in and Line-out cables
You’ll need to invest in cables depending upon your setup. You might not need wires if it’s a Bluetooth setup with a conference speaker. However, if you plan to have headphones, mixers, and microphones, then you’d need to verify the configuration of each of them to arrange the right cables.
Hybrid meeting equipment needed for high-quality video
DSLR Camera (With USB and HDMI connectivity)
Most hybrid meetings won’t require an expensive camera. Especially a small Zoom meeting would not need such professional equipment. However, a camera with an option to stream out the video feed via USB or HDMI is a must.
You’ll need a DSLR or a mirrorless camera like Canon M50 to stream high-quality video.
A high-quality webcam and proper lighting should be enough for virtual attendees for their home setup.
Our pick: Canon M50 with Wifi
Secondary cameras or smartphones
If it’s a small hybrid meeting, then maybe a single camera might be able to cover the whole meeting room. But if you need to take multiple angles into account, and focus on multiple speakers, then you’d need to have some secondary cameras. You can use a good quality smartphone or mirrorless camera for the job.
Tripods (for smartphones and your camera)
Okay, so now that you have the cameras for your meeting, tripods will help you conveniently place them. Depending upon the use case, tripods can help you fix a camera on your table, in front of the podium, in the corner, or the center.
JOBY GripTight is one of the most convenient tripod holders for a smartphone. For lightweight mirrorless cameras like Canon M50, you can choose a tripod by Amazon Basics. But for bigger cameras, you might need to choose from the likes of K&F and JOBY Gorillapod.
Our pick: Joby Griptight
Most laptops and software like Zoom would only support single video input. But you would need a video switcher if you wish to cover your hybrid meetings and events from multiple angles.
With a video switcher, you can choose to stream video and audio from multiple sources in the meeting room.
With a video switcher, you can choose to stream video and audio from multiple sources.
Our pick: Roland video switcher
Have you ever attended online meetings with blown-out lights in the background, harsh shadows, and poorly visible faces? Well, that’s a bummer! Avoid annoying lighting issues at your hybrid meetings with the right equipment.
- Ring lights: These lights can be strategically placed across your conference room to illuminate the background better, the whiteboard, and the attendees. Remote participants can also arrange clampable or desk ring lights to get an excellent and even illumination.
- Soft ceiling lights: Strong and hard lights can have uneven lighting, which might make some areas of your room appear blown out, and some are as poorly lit. For even and diffused lighting, you might use soft ceiling lights.
- Bounce light: A strong light source might produce uneven lighting due to irregular reflection. You can strategically place a strong light source to bounce off the walls or ceiling to produce an evenly lit room. Those attending virtually can ensure that any strong light sources are not placed directly behind or in front of them, as it might cause their picture to be blown out.
Lighting can affect the mood and enthusiasm of your participants. A dull meeting atmosphere might be distracting, while a well-lit meeting with soft lights can be energizing for both in-person and remote participants.
Equipment checklist for ideation and presentation during hybrid meetings and events
Deliver killer presentations with a projector
Smart projectors can conveniently convert a wall or a whiteboard into a big screen to unlock the next level of hybrid meetings. This way, your in-room attendees can interact with your remote attendees and produce a more productive meeting atmosphere.
It becomes easier for your hybrid attendees to present important information and reports to the whole team.
Our pick: Benq EH600 projector
Digital whiteboards and graphics tablets for the virtual audience
While your in-person attendees can access a whiteboard to present their ideas, your remote attendees might not. But there’s a solution. They can be ready with a digital whiteboard and a graphics tablet to explain their ideas.
A graphics tablet is a pad where a user can draw with the help of a stylus and present their ideas on screen.
Our pick: Wacom graphics tablet
Software checklist for your hybrid event
Hybrid event platform
A hybrid event platform can blend physical events with virtual events. You get features to connect hybrid audiences via high-quality video streams, interactive virtual stages, virtual meeting rooms, and networking features like chats, breakout rooms, and more. Virtual and in-room attendees can also participate in quizzes, Q&As, and polls via a hybrid event app.
Our pick: Airmeet
Virtual camera and live streaming software
Hybrid event platforms like Airmeet come equipped to give you superior control over your video feed, backgrounds, and streaming content from your local device. But if you need more control, and the ability to handle multiple streams, then virtual cameras are the way to go.
Virtual cameras can help you manage multiple video streams, present different angles, and even use the Chroma key functions to manage your virtual backgrounds.
Here are some tools for the virtual camera:
- OBS Camera
An internet browser
Many hybrid event platforms are browser-based, so you’ll need a sturdy browser like Edge, Chrome, or Firefox to be able to access those platforms. Wondering about the perks of using a browser-based platform for hybrid events? Well, you won’t need to install them on your system. You can set up your event platform in minutes and enjoy a great interface.
Connectivity checklist for your hybrid event equipment
The first necessity of hybrid events is stable WiFi for the live telecast to a remote audience so that both categories of participants may interact with each other and the event organizers.
Cables to manage your gear
Everything from your microphone and laptop to your projector might need different cables to connect. You’d need to list your tech equipment and arrange connectors and cables accordingly.
LAN is more reliable than a wifi connection and more resilient to any glitches. These connections are even faster, providing better internet speeds that improve the overall experience of your hybrid meetings by reducing lags or streaming outages.
In short, here’s what you need to put in your hybrid event equipment checklist
- Conference speakers
- Dedicated microphones and audio mixers
- Pop filters
- Dedicated headphones
- Line-in and Line-out cables
- DSLR or mirrorless camera (with USB and HDMI connectivity)
- Secondary cameras or smartphones
- Tripods (for smartphones and your camera)
- Video switcher
- Lighting equipment
- Whiteboard or graphics tablet
- Virtual event platform
- Virtual camera
- Internet browser
That’s a wrap
Congratulations, we believe you’re now all geared up to set up your equipment for your hybrid meetings. Arranging hybrid meeting equipment is challenging, but we hope we were able to help with this hybrid meeting equipment checklist.
Investing in the right hybrid events platform is the key to hosting a successful and engaging hybrid meeting. Airmeet is one of the best hybrid event platforms out there. Check it out here.