Preparing to Use Computer Audio and Video
If your version of IBM Lotus Sametime includes computer audio and video, you can talk to your colleagues during an online meeting just as though you were seeing them face to face. Before you attend your first audio/video meeting, follow these tips to ensure that your meeting is successful:
- Make sure your computer includes the required hardware and software for audio/video meetings.
- Use Sametime to test your audio and video.
- Test and configure your sound card.
The following terms will help you use your audio and video effectively:
- Device driver: A device driver allows a hardware device (such as a camera) to interact with a program that uses the device.
- Sound card: A hardware component that allows your computer to record or produce sounds.
- Full duplex: Describes a sound card that allows you to speak and listen at the same time. You must have a full-duplex sound card to participate in interactive meetings. (You can use a half-duplex sound card when viewing a recorded meeting.)
- Half duplex: Describes a sound card that does not allow you to speak and listen at the same time. If you are using a half-duplex sound card and someone interrupts you while you are speaking, you will not hear the interruption. You can use a half-duplex sound card when viewing a recorded meeting.
- Recording device: The device that your computer uses to record computer audio; usually a sound card for a microphone or speakerphone. If you have more than one sound card, you can choose your preferred recording device in the audio preferences for Sametime.
- Playback device: The device that your computer uses to play computer audio; usually a sound card for speakers or headphones. If you have more than one sound card, you can choose your preferred playback device in the audio preferences for Sametime.
- System mixer: Software on your computer that allows you to set volume levels for the audio components on your system (such as your microphone and speakers). You can access the system mixer from the audio preferences for Sametime.
- Microphone sensitivity: Your microphone's sensitivity to surrounding noise, such as shuffling papers or typing on the keyboard. You can adjust the microphone sensitivity to ensure that you do not transmit noise when another participant is speaking.
- Echo cancellation: A feature that eliminates any echo caused by audio coming out of your speakers and going back into your microphone. This type of echo can occur when your speakers and microphone are too close together (for example, if you are using a laptop with speakers and microphone set close together or if you move your microphone too close to your desktop speakers). To eliminate echoes in your meetings, you can use headphones or a speakerphone with echo cancellation, or you can select the echo cancellation check box in the audio preferences of Sametime.
- Unidirectional microphone: A microphone that picks up most of its sound from directly in front of the microphone. A unidirectional microphone is recommended for use with Sametime unless you are using a 360-degree video camera. (Use an omnidirectional microphone with a 360-degree video camera.)
- Omnidirectional microphone: A microphone that picks up sound from all sides. Use an omnidirectional microphone when you are using a 360-degree video camera.
- Video card: A hardware component that allows your computer to produce video images. Also known as a video capture device. You can choose your preferred video card (or video capture device) in the video preferences for Sametime.
- Video capture device: Either a video card (see definition above) or a Universal Serial Bus (USB) camera.
- Video format: The format that the camera uses to pass video images between the camera and the waiting program (such as Sametime). You can set your video format in the video preferences for Sametime.
- Video size: Defines how many pixels, or dots, make up each video image. Sametime supports two video sizes: 176 x 144 or 160 x 120. You can choose a video size in the video preferences.