The Republic of Mozambique is a country with a tumultuous past filled with war and struggle. Indeed, since the end of the Mozambican Civil War in 1992, the country still faces many challenges and continues to be one of the world’s most underdeveloped and poorest countries.

Where there’s growth there’s investment opportunity and the mobile market in Mozambique has experienced huge strides with companies like Vodacom moving in to compete with mCel, the mobile subsidiary of the national telecommunications parastatal, Telecomunicaçoes de Moçambique (TDM).

Plus immediately after the Mozambican Civil War the government also embarked upon telecommunications reform. While the government has been reluctant to privatise the TDM, all other telecommunications sectors are open season pending licensing from the industry regulator, the Instituto Nacional das Comunicaçoes de Moçambique (INCM).

The Instituto Nacional das Comunicaçoes de Moçambique, like any regulatory body, is necessary for a robust market. Being as such, it is imperative that their internal mechanisms are as streamlined as possible so decisions can be made quickly and decisively to combat an economic climate and a market that is otherwise challenging.

The INCM recently performed an upgrade of their AV infrastructure, commissioning local integrators Converged Connectivity to perform the installation, led by Kevin McMillan Craig, a long time industry player and AV convergence expert. Converged Connectivity has an Africa-wide footprint with a presence in countries like Mozambique, Kenya, Zambia, Ghana and Tanzania.

The brief

The brief from the INCM was procurement of a solution to unify the audio and video components of their AV infra-structure as well as data sharing and collaboration into one unified network. All in all the system was specified to supply VOIP (Voice Over IP), AV monitoring and emergency systems over one comprehensive backbone.

Craig comments: “The INCM has multiple offices. In these offices they’ve deployed a unified communications system that’s Microsoft Lync compatible. So they’ve got audio conferencing and video conferencing all running through that server which allows them permanent access to contacts. Now what they want to do is they want to be able to share the content of their meetings.’

In summation, the installation of AV systems consisted of the convergence of four different areas in the INCM campus on one network:

Auditorium AV control

Boardroom AV control

Meeting room AV control

Unified audio in public areas

The areas are managed from a single central processing rack, with local control in the venues.

The network

Over and above an extensive LAN infrastructure already installed, and a Crestron Network Control Infrastructure, there exists a third network: The EPSON EasyMP and MeetingMate network.

The EPSON network ensures that smart and mobile devices, tablets and notebook computers are able to connect to display devices anytime and anywhere, ensuring fast and efficient collaboration.

From an interactivity and connectivity standpoint, the EPSON MeetingMate compliments a Unified Communications network well. It allows interaction and connectivity between spaces in the same building, same city or vast geographic locations using WAN technology. The EPSON projectors in the venues are EasyMP and MeetingMate enabled enabling visual communication between the auditorium and boardroom as an example.

This component is crucial to the interoperability of devices and methods of communication.

The auditorium AV systems centres around a Crestron MC3 3-series control system, with local control via a Crestron iSys wireless touchpanel and two Crestron wall-mountable touch panels. Additionally, many other Creston peripherals were integrated to facilitate media and lighting control. A Creston 8×8 digital media switcher fitted with a four Digital Media 8G+ input cards and a 4 DM 8G+ w/2 HDMI output card was also installed and is the central hub from where all media is matrixed and distributed. For lighting, a Crestron SP12 12-channel dimmer pack was installed to handled lighting control up to 27KVA.

Auditorium AV components feature around an Epson Z-Series pojector with an Epson lens kit. The Epson projector, via the iProjector app for tablet and smart devices, enables the user to share presentations, images and video via their device simply by logging onto the EPSON WiFi network, either peer-to-peer or in infrastructure modes.

Audio systems centre around a Biamp Nexia CS digital sound processor, two Bittner power amplifiers, two Bose Panaray loudspeakers and four Bose DS100Se surface mount speakers. Further inputs are accommodated through a custom input panel installed into the audio control room.

In the boardroom we see Crestron’s Digital Media presentation system which essentially routes signals via the local network for control and content management. It integrates the control system, multimedia matrix switcher, microphone mixer, audio DSP, amplifier and DigitalMedia distribution centre snuggly into a single 3u rack space.

Input peripherals are courtesy of Kramer electronics centred on several TBUS-1 table-mount multi-connection systems with termination input points for VGA, mini-jack audio, USB, HDMI and RG45 instet modules. Lighting control is facilitated by a Crestron DIN-PWS50 50W Crestnet power supply and a DIN-1DIM-4 universal dimmer.

AV hardware installed in the boardrooms include two Kramer VGA/audio switches, eight Bose Freespace 3 satellite speakers, two Bose Freespace 3II bass modules, two Yamaha Integrated amplifiers and two Yamaha CD/DVD players.

Unified control components installed in the meeting rooms include two Crestron BPCI8 basic presentation controllers and, similar to the boardroom, Kramer input peripherals including VGA, mini-jack audio, RG45, HDMI and USB terminating at TBUS-1A table-mount recepticles.

AV components included two Elite Screens Electric84H and two Epson EB-1945W projectors with mounting kits, and four Bose DS16 ceiling mount speakers powered by a Kramer Tools stereo amplifier with RS-232 control.

The INCM public address system is handled by a networked Biamp Vocia system. The features of this system include distributed processing and page routing, VIOP paging, system-level monitoring, logging and control, and it works over standard IP networks and the Cobranet AoE protocol.

A VA-8600c multi-channel amplifier was installed with six AM-600c amplifier module cards. The VA-8600c offers eight channels of modular amplification with up to 2400W of power per unit. The VA-600c modules offer 600W of continuous and support 4Ohm, 6Ohm, 8Ohm, 70V or 100V loads. The VA-8600c is certified for use in an EN 54-16 life safety system. Further Biamp equipment installed includes two Vocia VA4030 30W per channel amplifiers, nine Vocia EWS-4 wall-mount paging stations, ten Vocia WR-1 wall-mount IP POE control panels, an LSI-16 Vocia life safety interface and one Vocia CI-1 control interface.

The Vocia system feeds 125 Bosch LBH0606 ceiling speakers installed throughout their facilities connected by a massive 1.4km of screened speaker cable.
Microphones used are all Beyerdynamic including the Quinta Delegate microphones and a single Quinta Chairman’s microphone, all powered by a Quinta power supply unit.

Given the installation performed by Converged Connectivity and their partership with EPSON Visual Instruments at the Instituto Nacional das Comunicaçoes de Moçambique, it is clear that their internal processes are streamlined and effective to the point of being state of the art. Despite the challenges Mozambique has faced throughout the last few decades, the fact that their telecommunications regulator has spent so much time and expense integrating a system of this calibre, one can only genuinely hope that it helps to bolster their market competition through decisive and efficient decision making.