IP Tannoy, Public Address, Paging


  • Mass Notification & Instruction
  • Public Address (PA) & Information
  • Staff Co-ordination
  • H&S, Medical Response
  • Security Announcements

Audio Applications | Tannoy

Tannoy, Public Address (PA) and Paging are widely used terms similarly describing an audio application used for voice announcements (live and recorded). IP Tannoy, IP Public Address & IP Paging describe similar functional audio application, but utilise IP networks to provide improved capability, performance, monitoring and control when compared to traditional audio.

Used extensively throughout all industry and business sectors, ‘tannoy’ audio applications are employed to provide mass notification & information announcements as well as to instigate and co-ordinate security, medical and incident response.

Traditional Audio | Tannoy

Commercial tannoy, PA and paging sound system applications typically employ a cabling infrastructure design based on dedicated 70v/100v line cabling technology (output & speaker cabling). Dedicated cabling is also used to connect audio input source entities such as microphones and music source/s.

Traditional Tannoy Audio Entities

  • Audio Source (microphones and music sources)
  • System Equipment (mixing, amplification)
  • Loud Speakers
  • Cabling Infrastructure

How does a traditional tannoy system work?

Traditional tannoy systems are designed to include the typical audio entities as shown. Audio is generated by source input entities such as a CD player or radio tuner (music) and tannoy / paging microphones for voice announcements. Audio mixer/matrix and amplification equipment is used to ‘process’ audio ready for output. Output entities (tannoy/pa and music loud speakers)  are used for audio playout.

IP Audio | Tannoy

Commercial IP audio tannoy, PA and paging sound system applications utilise shared ‘connection-less’ IP network infrastructures. As a result, no longer tied to cabling constraints, IP audio transmission is free to switch, route and terminate just like any other data application.

IP Tannoy Audio Entities

  • Audio Source (microphones and music sources)
  • System Equipment (Firmware / Software)
  • IP Loud Speakers
  • IP Decoders / SIP Endpoints & Gateways

How does an IP tannoy system work?

IP tannoy system audio source and playout ‘entities’ functionally operate similarly to traditional audio entities. However, as they are IP communications devices they connect and communicate very differently. Audio source entities include an IP audio ‘encoder’ to convert traditional audio to IP audio. Audio output entities (IP speakers) typically include an IP audio ‘decoder’ and integrated power over ethernet (PoE) amplifier for simple network connection and audio playout.

IP Microphone Tannoy Announcement: An IP tannoy / paging microphone will encode IP audio, device/server/firmware entities are used to configure, control and manage audio (for example audio zones). IP speakers playout the received announcement audio.

SIP / VoIP Telephony Tannoy Announcement: A SIP IP encoder/decoder (gateway) device is connected to the network, registered to the local / hosted telephony service (just like an IP phone). A user dials the associated gateway SIP extension – the decoding and encoding function to transition SIP audio to IP audio for onward streaming transmission. Device, server and firmware entities are again used to configure, control and manage audio, IP speakers playout the received announcement audio.

Find out more about SIP and IP Audio integration.


Mixed Audio Technology

IP audio – Tannoy, PA and Paging audio applications are not technology specific. Mixed audio technology from traditional audio and IP audio device product portfolios can be used collectively within the same tannoy audio design.

This example shows how IP audio decoder entities are used to convert IP audio (for example from an IP microphone or other IP / SIP audio source entity). Traditional audio system equipment and 100v line speakers can then be used and installed for processing and audio playout.

Factory Tannoy Systems

A special mention goes to factory tannoy, public address and paging. We have specified, designed and installed many industrial / factory tannoy systems. Busy, often challenging and noisy environments, factory sites regularly present with particular installation issues and challenges. Factory tannoy systems are used extensively to provide a range of audio applications. Including staff calling, production and engineering co-ordination, medical and incident response. 

Industrial and factory tannoy sites are good examples of mixed audio technology proposition. Utilising IP audio for audio source and system input, we can also use IP audio to route and distribute audio between buildings, creating a de-centralised design and minimising cabling installation. Maintaining traditional 100v line amplification and speakers ensures sufficient audio ‘power’ and balances speaker capability against cost and wide product availability.


Traditional Factory Tannoy System Installation

Traditional factory and industrial tannoy, pa and paging systems provide site wide communications and often use BGM (typically radio) for playout to main production areas.

  • Centralised System Equipment (amp stack)
  • Dedicated cabling infrastructure
  • BGM / Radio derived from a standard radio tuner

Mixed Technology Factory Tannoy System Installation

Most factory and industrial sites will typically require a large qty of speakers, with high audio ‘power’ requirement to service volume levels in often large spaces with high ambient noise levels.  Cost, availability and limited PoE for high audio power provisioning mean 100v traditional speakers remain a popular option for these settings.

However, IP audio can radically change the audio design topology for factory and industrial sites (improving capability and function).

  • Primary IP audio distribution
  • Improved audio routing capability
  • De-centralised system equipment (IP audio decoder & amplifier distributed to local IT / Comms rooms)
  • IP audio inputs with prioritisation, scheduling, flexible zone planning and time of day routing
  • Integration with SIP telephony tannoy & paging
  • IP speakers to smaller zone areas (no supporting audio equipment required)

Tannoy, PA, Paging...

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