Help me conceive / design / implement a videoconferencing solution for a medium-sized business with three offices. Our requirements are numerous and may need to be reined in based on budgetary constraints...
Our offices are connected via 54Mbps LSS circuits. Our primary requirement is that the offices be able to conference with each other from their respective board / conference rooms. Our main office board room table is 20" x 4" and this is where most of the big meetings take place, so it'll probably need the best wide-angle PTZ camera out of the three, and decent sound pickup.
We also have a relatively large, open waiting area where meetings take place, and want to be able to use videoconferencing for these meetings so that our staff don't have to travel so much.
These larger staff meetings involve lots of back-and-forth discussion so we're debating how best to address the A/V needs here -- wire the room for sound, use a good condenser mic from the center of the room, pass around a dynamic microphone as people talk, etc.
Oh, and we want to be able to record these meetings for future reference, and want to be able to log in and witness these videoconferences through a web browser. Sure would be nice if you could *participate* in the conferences via web browser, but that's probably pushing it; we want anyone to be able to see what's going on but aren't interested in ensuring that every workstation has a camera installed.
Our current budget is sub-10K and I don't think that's realistic when looking at some of the tightly-bundled setups a la Polycom. I'm debating how far to go with a piecemeal solution; I have some audio experience and would love to get my hands dirty, but do not want something that is cobbled together, requiring my intervention at every turn to keep it running smoothly. I am more of a software guy and I love to write code more than anything else, so if that factors into how slick this could be (Sharepoint?) I'd be interested to hear your thoughts.
Someone suggested that I might be able to use this rig
which has a decent DVR, but this is clearly a security-only solution and does not include sound functionality. I think I've successfully convinced them that trying to use such a contraption would be quite difficult and would involve MUXing and would be like forcing a square peg into a round hole.
This seems to be a pretty big undertaking, eh? "Call a consultant" is certainly a passable answer but I'm hoping to tap into some past experience and make this a great resource for other souls like myself who are tasked with bringing a medium-sized business into the wonderful world of videoconferencing without shelling out crazy cash.