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Audio-Technica announces ATCS-60 infrared conference system

Audio-Technica has expanded its Engineered Sound range with the ATCS-60 IR (infrared) Conference System. The ATCS-60 is a self-contained wireless distributed audio system using infrared transmission, providing ease of setup and operation, and eliminating the need for microphone wiring and ceiling speakers. The system is expected to ship in autumn of 2009.

The ATCS-60 IR Conference System offers security, high noise immunity and low power requirements, and features wireless microphone units (ATCS-M60). As a result, it offers freedom to easily change microphone locations and system configurations while providing functions such as simultaneous interpretation for up to three foreign languages; automatic camera tracking to follow the switching of microphones; and optional minutes recording.

Unlike conventional wireless, infrared technology offers secure communication, as the signal stays within the room, eliminating outside pickup. The system operates in two modes, manual and automatic. In manual mode, which works like a discussion system, each meeting member pushes a button to request recognition by the meeting's chairman. This mode accepts up to 150 microphone units. In automatic mode, which accepts up to 50 microphone units, all channels run through a "smart" mixer, which turns each microphone on and off depending on whether or not that meeting member is speaking. The mixer can be set so that from one to five people can talk simultaneously.

The system's included ATCS-C60MAG software allows users to monitor and control the system using a computer screen with a graphical interface patterned after the room layout. An advanced version of the software can digitally record meetings. The ATCS-M60 Microphone Units can run on battery or via AC power with a standard adapter. Finally, the Master Control Unit features an RS-232C connecting port for control via third-party units by AMX, Crestron and others.