April 16, 2015
A Message from Your Region Director
I trust this finds you well.
Resistance (Ω) is nothing new to our industry. Resistance is inherent and a barrier to identify and overcome in order to deliver a clear signal. Resistance is simply opposition to the flow of electric current.
Regarding audio and speaker cable selection, it’s been stated that the single most important aspect of speaker cables is resistance. I’m no audiophile or subject matter expert on sound distribution, but my simple mind tells me that with a too-small gauge of wire, the more the amplifier has to work. With a bigger amplifier, the further you can go. But a bigger amplifier costs more money. The larger the gauge of wire, the further you can deliver the sound, but a larger gauge wire also costs more money. It’s quite a balance of speaker efficiency, amplifier size, wire gauge and price. It can be overwhelming.
A few years ago, I installed a technology in my house called A-BUS. For distributed audio, I found for a relatively small investment I could use UTP (CAT 6) to deliver an audio signal to many locations in my house, without a powerful and expensive amplifier, or a heavy gauge and expensive speaker wire. At each location, I could install a small amplifier/volume control; from this point short lengths of traditional speaker wire feed the speakers. The audio source could even be a cheap MP3 player.
I can’t tell you the status of A-BUS technology today…if it’s still an emerging technology or by now a legacy system. I just know it delivered a clear message efficiently and affordably. It achieved more for less.
“There's nothing stronger than the heart of a volunteer.”
—Lt. General James "Jimmy" Doolittle
It may be perceived that an attitude of service is diminishing with popular culture, attitudes and competition for our time. Volunteerism in this day and age could be considered the path of the most resistance. Still volunteerism remains the most effective way to achieve more for less.
Contrary to his name, Jimmy didn't "do little"—Jimmy "did a lot." He contributed greatly to this country and the aviation industry. From my days in the United States Air Force, beginning with basic training, Lt. General Doolittle became a name synonymous with the volunteer spirit and the term “esprit de corps”—a feeling of loyalty, enthusiasm and devotion to a cause among the members of a group.
I want to take a moment to acknowledge a few volunteers and their recent contributions to BICSI and the industry.
At the 2015 BICSI Winter Conference in February, George Thorning, RCDD, (University of New Mexico), received the David K. Blythe/University of Kentucky Award for Outstanding Member of the Year in recognition for his work within the South-Central Region in the planning and hosting of BICSI Breakfast Clubs, as well as his contributions to several BICSI committees.
And in March, Mike Moreland, RCDD, (Vitel Communications Corporation, Amarillo, Texas) and Bill Todd, RCDD, OSP, (DataCom Design Group, Houston, Texas), delivered presentations on “Helping the A/E Design Team Understand Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Design Needs” to the Amarillo Chapter of Construction Specifications Institute (CSI).
Like the A-BUS technology, the BICSI message was distributed and delivered locally to a target audience. Much less power (workload, staffing, etc.) was needed to deliver the message from its source (BICSI Headquarters).
More of these opportunities exist in your communities. Perhaps you’ve been active in delivering the BICSI message to CSI or other industry organizations. I’d like to hear about this work and share it with the BICSI community. BICSI Headquarters can’t be everywhere, but you can. I encourage you to be the “distributed” (local) BICSI voice.
Be safe; someone is counting on you.
Proudly serving you as the BICSI U.S. South-Central Region Director,
Jeff Beavers, RCDD, OSP