IP 'Tannoy' & IP Public Address (IP PA)
Traditional 'Tannoy', Public Address (PA) and background music and radio systems (BGM) generally rely on centralised
amplification equipment connected to a cable topology that is dedicated
and 'fixed' for the audio application function. This topology is typical of the
vast majority of existing installed PA/Tannoy & Paging systems that
we see today. Product and technology advances of multimedia IP networks, provide for viable and often compelling reasons to consider alternative topology solutions.
The following links provide details of example IP Tannoy / IP PA application configurations
IP PA / 'Tannoy' for - Existing Installations
Protecting Investment - Hybrid,
IP & Analogue / Digital
IP PA / 'Tannoy' for - New Installations
Network & Telephony Investment ROI -
IP Analogue / Digital & PBX Integration
IP PA / 'Tannoy' for - Session Initiation Protocol
Unified Communication - 'Pure'
IP network environments - PA/Tannoy 'application'
The following provides some further detail and general information (mostly
generic) about what is, and how IP PA / Tannoy actually works, as well as
the typical benefit and promises it can offer:
Internet Protocol (IP). Most of us will have an awareness, or perhaps a
further understanding, that a large majority of data 'networks' and indeed
the Internet, are 'IP' based. TCP/IP
is widely recognised
as the principal partnership of information transfer on networks (ie between
computers, servers and the internet).
'IP is KING!'
The IP element of data networking has emerged
as a clear leader of the 'Network Layer' (OSI) model. TCP (Transmission
Control Protocol) is not generally used for the transport of real time media
(sound, voice and video). This is because there is little point in controlling / re-sending / discarding
such information - once it's said, it's said.... again, little point in
re-sending..... the conversation would be a bit strange if we did. Instead,
we use simple, lighter weight transport protocols such as UDP (User Datagram
Protocol) over IP or UDP/IP
. We do however, see TCP and
other transport control protocols used where bandwidth is small and conservation
a priority. In such cases, (such as PA/Tannoy in remote areas of a big site,
VPN or low rate DLS remote locations / branch offices). In these instances,
as long as we control the delay and can accept near or non-real time announcement
paging, then a transmission control protocol may be used.
The following diagram shows the Open System Interconnection (OSI)
framework definition for typical 'data' (TCP/IP) and a typical voice, music
and sound application (UDP/IP):
What does PA / Tannoy over IP promise?
Public Address (PA) Anywhere
With traditional public address, we see that the voice, music & sounds
are transported via dedicated cables. This means that the wiring 'fixes'
the individual components of the system (eg. speakers, microphones). If
you wanted to move a speaker, you would need to rewire the cabling to the
new location. With PA over IP, with good design and careful consideration
to the network readiness, you really can have PA anywhere. Speakers can
be deployed anywhere the network extends. They can be added to, removed
or moved, very simply without rewiring. That means to any network point,
including wireless - even multi-site (eg. you could have a speakers at remote
building/s or site/s that broadcast information is sent). IP system components
are generally higher cost (although prices are falling with demand), but
this cost is offset against a much lower labour cost for installation, especially
for the bigger and/or more complex designs.
IP Public Address (PA) System Management & Administration
Connected to a network, with an IP address, the various IP PA system components
are mostly configured by software. This can be done locally or (with security
enabled login) remotely from elsewhere on the network - this could be in
the same building, site, or indeed anywhere access to the network can be
gained. Some of the more important system components are also capable of
providing various logging events, and system management status. Device and
zonal mapping, including software driven audio files and levels are examples
of the sort of capabilities that an IP PA system can provide.
Public Address (PA) as an 'Application'
Transport of voice/music & sounds via IP and a network can provide increased
topology and infrastructure flexibilities and benefits as discussed above.
Providing centralised control of the PA/Paging/Tannoy system further extends
benefit and indeed allows additional capabilities to truly see PA as an
application eg. browser based configuration and management, software generated
announcements, music and sounds & scheduled eventing.
Got any questions or queries about our IP PA & Tannoy services? please