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Technical Equipment

As required, we’ll be pleased to recommend reliable companies that provide the technical interpreting equipment best suited to your conference; alternatively we’ll take over these arrangements for you.

Simultaneous Interpreting

Depending on the type of meeting you are planning, you may choose from two types of equipment for simultaneous interpreting:

Simultaneous interpreting booth

There are both fixed and mobile booths. International organizations will usually have fixed systems, as are used at the European Patent Office in Munich. Mobile booths are rented out for a fee by specialist companies or agencies. State-of-the-art equipment for a mobile booth (e.g. from Philips) uses infrared light for transmitting the language and control signals. The interpreting system consists of a central console and the equipment for the interpreting booth itself (soundproof booth, interpreting console, headset, lighting, etc.). The interpreting booth is required to comply with specific standards (ISO 4043 and DIN 56924).

Portable simultaneous interpreting equipment

Portable simultaneous interpreting equipment is for instance used for guided plant tours. The interpreter stays in the vicinity of the speaker and whispers the interpreted version into a wireless microphone. The listeners are equipped with headset receivers. This type of interpreting should be used only under specific circumstances and for a maximum of c. 25 listeners.

Whilst such portable simultaneous interpreting equipment is much less costly than a simultaneous interpreting booth, please bear in mind that it does have its downside. Remember that what is being said can be interpreted into only one language, and the interpreter’s whispering may prove something of an irritation to the other participants. Please refer to our section entitled Chuchotage for further information.