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Technical equipment comes into play with simultaneous and whisper interpreting: soundproof booths in which the interpreters hear the sound in the room via headphones and the participants also hear the interpretation via headphones offer optimum working conditions. For that to work, all participants have to speak into microphones.

Whisper interpreting or chuchotage is a modified form of simultaneous interpretation with the difference that the interpreters are no longer sat in a booth. Instead, they are in the same room, ideally directly next to the people who require the interpretation. Whisper interpreting can be provided to a maximum of two to three people, where there are more it is standard to use mobile interpreting equipment. This equipment comprises a microphone into which the interpreter speaks quietly, and receivers and headset for the listeners to be able to hear.

For consecutive interpreting and community and liaison interpreting, working materials include a notepad, a pen and a sharp mind. With this interpreting mode, the interpreter takes notes while the speaker is delivering their speech before reproducing what was said – after a few minutes or speech acts – in the other language.

A clear view of the speaker to be able to see their gestures and expressions is just as important for successful interpretation as good acoustics (where possible via headphones or the interpreter being close enough to the speaker to be able to hear everything).

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