Good lighting, a quality sound system, appropriate (and sometimes multiple) screens, sufficient power, and connectivity: These audiovisual basics are the backbone of an engaging meeting or event. While you’ll probably need to hire a pro to put these pieces in place, it’s smart to stay up to date on the technology that you’re buying. 

Take our 10-question quiz to test your knowledge of the lingo of your AV suppliers.


1. Aspect ratio

A. A screen’s ratio of width to height

B. A screen’s ratio of height to width

C. A general term for widescreen video projection

D. A miniature USB connector


2. Lumens

A. Slanted, moveable fins that control the angle of light from a spotlight

B. A tropical fruit created by crossing limes with lemons

C. A measure of brightness

D. An instrument that concentrates a small beam of light on a subject or area


3. Video mapping

A. An Internet marketing strategy using event videos to engage potential meeting attendees  

B. Creating 3D environments for virtual meetings

C. Using video to design or animate a stage set

D. An open-source audio and video–editing tool


4. Gobo

A. A disc placed into a lighting fixture to project a shape

B. An app that transforms your iPhone into a laser pointer

C. A small disturbance that affects the quality of a video signal.

D. Short for Good Boom, an adjustable arm mounted at an angle, used to hold lighting or sound equipment


5. Native app

A. An app that requires Internet connectivity at all times to function 

B. An app that’s written for a specific organization and distributed through an app store

C. An app distributed outside of the normal app store channels, typically via an organization’s Web site

D. An app that’s written for a specific hardware platform and usually sold through an app store


6. Long throw

A. A light source used to produce a wash

B. Tom Brady’s forte

C. A projector that is effective at a long distance

D. A spotlight operated from an adjustable stand, used to follow performer on a stage with its beam


7. Pin spot

A. A moveable lens in a multi-lens optical system that adjusts the focus of a light source

B. A lapel

C. A spotlight that has an extremely narrow beam

D. A spotlight employing a single Fresnel lens that produces a soft-edged beam


8. ARS

A. Audience Reply Sequence

B. Audience Response System

C. Attendee Reaction System

D. Automated Response Support


9. Safe working load

A. 88 lbs. for women/104 lbs. for men

B. An OSHA term for the maximum number of attendees allowed per square foot of event space

C. The maximum amount of weight that can be hung from a point in the ceiling

D. 40 hours a week


10. Gel

A. A colored filter

B. A petroleum product used on a spotlight lens for a softening effect

C. A reflective surface on video screens

D. A swipe of decorative sauce on dessert plates


Special thanks to Matt Harvey, vice president, client network services at PSAV, a technology and audiovisual supplier to the meetings industry, for helping us put the quiz together. If you really want to get technical, download PSAV’s full Audiovisual Glossary.