SACIA Certification

Testimonials - AV Technology

Darren Caithness
Avitel Distribution

Course attended: GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology

Having worked on reality TV productions for many years my experiance has been gained mainly through practical, hands-on application. The InfoComm/ SACIA course gave me a better understanding of the theory behind the practical application of AV technologies.

Emile Hendricks
AV Alliance - Cape Town

Course attended: GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology - October 2014

No doubt, the course is absolutely necessary and definitely recommended for anyone in our field. All the bases are covered and it's a nice even spread of all things relevant to our work. I will certainly recommend this course to others, especially considering the professional manner in which it was carried out , as well as having someone as knowledgeable as Mark on board.

Thanks again for a great week.

Jennifer Jeffrey
System Solutions (Pty) Ltd

Course attended: GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology - October 2014

I really enjoyed the course and actually look forward to writing the exam to see how much I learned. It was really awesome being in a group of such a vast array of skill levels and technical knowledge and not only learning from the course but also from other peoples experiences in the AV industry.

Gavin Barron
TCH Bonisa

Course attended: GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology - October 2014

I must admit I was a bit hesitant to do this course when my business partner suggested it to me. Being in the industry for a long time, you tend to think you know it all. But I was pleasantly surprised with the amount of content and quality of the course material. My colleagues and I found it very rewarding and informative.

I must also compliment all the other companies that sent their staff on the course. It just shows how much people care about their work force to encourage further training. I think our group was a great bunch of people and I hope we'll meet up again at future SACIA events.

Jesaya Johannes
dB Audio - Namibia

Course attended: GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology - October 2014

I started working for dB Audio Namibia in 2011 as an AV technician. Our sources of information are limited in Namibia and we therefore rely on the people working closest to us to resolve technical issues.

The GEN111 Essentials of AV technology course has allowed me to learn more in a condensed amount of time, giving me a better understanding between the basic aspects of AV and current technology. The connections between Audio, Light, Power, Environment and Vision, how they all need to be factored into the decision making when planning and implementing AV. I am now better equipped to make informed decisions when planning for an event and confidently advise my colleagues and clients in all AV decision making.

Thank you SACIA for this eye opening and informative course. I would highly recommend it to any AV technician and people working in the AV arena.

Thabo Ntsala
AV Technician – Tsogo Sun

Course attended: GEN111 AV Essentials – November 2013

I have been involved in the entertainment industry for nearly 15 years and have given myself a fair chance to learn about sound, Lighting and AV. Despite my experience, I did not understand the purpose of some of the technical elements and how they play a role in what we do on a day to day life. As my manager David Butcher always says “everything is about mapping”. That made me understand the relationship between AV, Sound, IT, Electrical and Lighting. Since I attended the GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology course in November 2013, I have learned more about AV technology.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank SACIA for providing this course and encourage more AV technicians to attend it. I had the opportunity to write the InfoComm-Recognized AV Technologist exam which was a challenge but I managed to pass it because of GEN111 course material from SACIA. Since technology changes all the time, we also need to change with it by learning all the time.

Johan Jacobs
Technician at System Solutions

Course attended: GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology - November 2013

I was introduced to AV by chance and I must say after attending the AV Technology course it was a real eye opener for me. Coming from an IT and electrical background I never realized that AV could be so complex and at the same time very interesting and challenging as well.
I enjoyed the course very much and will definitely pursue my CTS accreditation and further my new career objectives. The three days was tough with a lot of information to absorb and I also did the online training and testing material which was quite tough and challenging. The AV technology course is a definite yes for newbies like me and other techies.

Izak de Villiers

Course attended: GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology - November 2013

The November 2013 Gen111 AV Essentials course was hosted in beautiful, peaceful surroundings in the midst of Randburg's hustle and bustle.
Despite worries that the coursebook was too hefty to be covered in the scheduled three days, our knowledgeable and patient instructor managed to navigate interesting topics, numerous questions and even quirks in the InfoComm material with aplomb.

The course introduced students to the gamut of AV industry concerns from client needs to video encoding techniques. Best practices, trends and pitfalls were also discussed, and lively debates during sessions and over lunch breaks enabled course-goers to benefit from the group's collective experience and knowledge.

All in all it was a very valuable and useful 3 days, whether you were an experienced AV professional or a newcomer. Thanks to SACIA for the opportunity! I am confident that this course will contribute towards the growth, competence and ethos of the SA AV industry.

Ryan Smith
Audio & Visual Specialist

Suncoast Casino
Course attended: GEN111 AV Essentials - October 2013

I would just like to take this opportunity to thank you and your team for hosting the GEN111 Essentials of the AV Industry course in Durban. The training was excellent and very informative. We were always focused on each lesson and just when I thought I knew everything, there was more to learn. As we all know the AV industry is changing all the time due to the technological advances that are taking place. And this makes our jobs so interesting in finding a solution to a problem as well as using technology to make our lives easier. I strongly recommend this course to anyone who would like to start a career in the AV industry. It provides a fantastic grounding for people who wish to follow a career in AV.

Blessing Mudehwe Contact Blessing Mudehwe on LinkedIn
Celebration Ministries International

Course attended: GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology – November 2013

The GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology was a great course for me. I am involved in a lot of productions at our Church in Harare, Zimbabwe and it has been a challenge to quickly understand and resolve some of the AV issues we were facing. This course gave me great revelation on things I deal with everyday at my work.

By the end of the course I was a totally different person and it’s only then I realised how hard we’ve been working to solve problems that are easy to address if you have all this knowledge. The course taught me to understand the problems and resolve them in a professional way. I travelled 1,200 km in a mini-bus taxi to attend this course – it wasn’t a comfortable ride but it proved to be a great investment.

Mbengeni Victor Tshidino Contact Mbengeni Victor Tshidino on LinkedIn
Dr Vic Electronics – Limpopo

Course attended: GEN111 AV Essentials – November 2013

As a small business owner committed to growing my AV business and contributing to the development of South Africa, it’s really important to become part of a larger community of AV professionals active throughout the region. SACIA provides me with the opportunity to engage with the industry heavy-weights and gather information that would simply not be available to me as a small business owner operating in the country’s most impoverished province. Just as important however, is their training programmes that provide me with information on the trends and technologies shaping the future of our industry and the country. The GEN111 course was a real eye-opener for me. Most of my knowledge comes from manufacturer training and the ‘trial and error’ provided by hands-on experience, but this course explained the science and technology behind the audio and video equipment I work with on a daily basis. The course isn’t cheap but the knowledge I gained will certainly open new doors and help build my business so that the company can take part in job creation. I ‘m a business owner who believe in the spirit of Ubuntu. Thank you SACIA for playing a role in educating the nation - irrespective of colour. I’m looking forward to writing the InfoComm recognised AV Technologist test and will certainly participate in future SACIA training. Education is the key to our future!!

John Adler Contact John Adler on LinkedIn
Defence TV (Dept of Defence)

Course attended: GEN112 CTS Prep and IABM Broadcast Technology Workflows – August 2013

Having participated in both the CTS Prep course and the Broadcast Technology Workflows I can truly recommend the courses presented by SACIA. As we all know, our industry is vast and covers many specialised disciplines. I am sure that there are many like me who have a great knowledge of the disciplines we work with on a daily basis, but retreat to the shadows feeling rather inadequate when other disciplines within our industry are discussed. These courses bridge that gap and have given me great confidence, as well as a fantastic integrated view of how our industry fits together. This in turn stands me in good stead when having to make long term strategic and financial decisions on the future direction of our production facility.

Peter Varley Contact Peter Varley on LinkedIn
Electrosonic KZN

Course attended: InfoComm Advanced AV Design - July 2013

I have worked in the consumer electronics industry for longer than I care to admit - but eight years ago I ventured into the professional AV industry when I joined Electrosonic in Durban. I've now attended a number of the SACIA courses and at the ripe old age of 56, I've generally been the 'senior citizen' on each.
The first course I attended was the GEN111 AV Essentials course run by SACIA at the University of KwaZulu Natal. The on-line exams were surprisingly challenging and brought me to the realization I wasn’t as clever as I thought. I was inspired to continue studying and subsequently attended the GEN112 CTS Prep course and went on to earn InfoComm's CTS credential. It's not been easy for an 'old ballie' like me to resume studies but the SACIA courses provide real guidance and direction.

My journey so far had made me hungry for knowledge and I've now completed the three specialised design courses which I found mind blowing. The course(s) were expertly presented by Rod Brown, an InfoComm University instructor from Melbourne, Australia. Rod is a man who obviously knows his stuff, and he balanced the course content with practical tasks which kept me focused for the full nine days. This course has opened my eyes to new possibilities in my career and has certainly made me a more productive and versatile designer. Rod's passion for the business is infectious and I'm planning to sit for the CTS-D examination within the year. Well done to SACIA, and thanks to Rod for sharing his knowledge and enthusiasm!

Marius du Plessis Contact Marius du Plessis on LinkedIn
Teljoy Business Systems

Course attended: SACIA GEN112 CTS Prep – July 2013

For many years I have dreamt about my CTS certification. There is a scene in “The Matrix” where the lead character (Neo) is offered the choice between a red pill and a blue pill. The blue pill would allow him to remain in the fabricated reality of the Matrix. The red pill would lead to his escape from the Matrix and into the "real world".
One thing that I have learned in the AV industry is to always take the red pill. Never be afraid of what you can achieve in life. People taking the blue pill will say “We haven’t done that before so let’s play safe and stick with what we know.” Those who are willing to take the red pill will say “ We have never done that before ..let’s do it”. I decided to join the CTS-Prep class in July 2013 and I wrote my CTS exam about a week later. I passed with a very high percentage and that is the reason why anyone wanting to advance their career and earn the CTS credential should join the next CTS Prep class. SACIA equips you with the necessary knowledge to be able to pass your exam just like I did. Thank you SACIA. I will be back to do my CTS-D and CTS-I.
I challenge all AV technicians in the market to take the red pill and escape from the Matrix – acquire the knowledge you need to define your own destiny.

Fusi Mokoena
Service Delivery Manager | Information and Communication Systems (ICS) | University of Johannesburg

Course attended: GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology – May 2013

In January 2013 the Audio Visual unit at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) was incorporated into the Information and Communications Systems Department reporting directly to me. At the time my knowledge of AV was sparse and it was a daunting and challenging task to be responsible for the AV unit coming from a purely IT background. As if that was not enough, at the end of March 2013, the AVU lost a very capable Manager who had turned the unit around and had plans in place to further modernize the unit. I had to hit the ground running.
Thanks to Kevan for encouraging me to enrol in the GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology course in May 2013. I happened to be the only course delegate that had not been involved in the professional AV space but the warm reception from Kevan, Mark Hull (course facilitator) and the course delegates helped me gain confidence and settled my nerves.
Kevan and Mark made complex concepts sound so simple that I began to relate what was said in class with issues that I had encountered in the workplace.

Since going back to UJ, armed with the knowledge and tips from the GEN111 course, I am better equipped to manage the Support and Installation teams. I’ve now got the confidence to challenge, question and make contributions to the development of our AV infrastructure. Without attending the GEN111 course I do not know how I would have been able to steer this ship up to this stage with confidence and efficiency. I am planning to enrol all my AVU staff on the course and encourage everyone who has not taken the GEN111 to do so. SACIA is a great home for ALL serious Audio Visual practitioners.

Chris Maritz Contact Chris Maritz on LinkedIn
Questek Advanced Technologies
Course attended: SACIA GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology - November 2012

Back from the SACIA GEN111 training and WOW what an eye opener!!! Lecturers as well as information were beyond reproach. They are brilliant and if you want to get further in the AV industry... Go SACIA!!!

Yolanda Tree Contact Yolanda Tree on LinkedIn
Audio Visual Centre
Course attended: SACIA GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology - June 2012.

Everyone in the AV business - especially newcomers - can benefit from this course as it promotes a broad understanding of the technologies used within the AV industry. It was well-presented, informative and a great forum to learn and share with fellow students.

I would highly recommend this course to anyone needing a solid introduction to AV or wanting to brush up on their understanding of the technologies we work with every day. Thank you to Kevan and our fantastic presenter, Nelson!
I will definitely be attending more SACIA courses in the future.

Sean Nienaber
System Solutions
Course attended: GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology - June 2012

This is an outstanding course for anyone looking for a solid theoretical AV foundation. Nelson Baumgratz is a phenomenal instructor and deserves all the accolades coming his way.
Thank you so much for creating a wonderful learning environment and all the fun we had in the process.

Thys Venter Contact Thys Venter on LinkedIn
As one of the leading distributors in the AV market we have a responsibility to our dealers to supply good factual solutions. We need to have all the skills in-house to advise and educate our customers. Until now there has never been a platform to work from or educate our staff. During 2011 we have had quite a few of our staff members attend these SACIA courses (including myself) and have been pleasantly surprised at what we've learned. I highly recommend that anyone in the AV business attends these courses. It creates the correct professional platform to work from.

Tumi Dumasi Contact Tumi Dumasi on LinkedIn
Course attended: GEN111 AV Essentials
December 2011
Although I've been involved in the AV industry for a number of years almost all my knowledge has been self-taught. I've watched, listened and simply applied "common sense" to everything I do. This course has added a scientific platform to my common sense and provided me with a solid foundation and a much broader view of the industry and the technologies we use. This course is thoroughly relevant to ALL in the AV market. Thank you for filling in the gaps in my knowledge. (And special thanks to Nelson Baumgratz - he is brilliant).

Deon Olckers Contact Deon Olckers on LinkedIn
Course attended: GEN111 AV Essentials
June 2011
I have been in the AV industry for close on 3 years, picking up knowledge as I carry on. I have always been a firm believer that the best knowledge attained is through experience. What an experience the AV Essentials course was. I had no idea the Audio Visual industry had so many factors implicating the end result of an installation. Not only does the course open your mind to all the aspects of the industry, but it makes for better customer care. I could recommend this course to all in or planning on entering the AV industry. It certainly gave me a better understanding of the AV industry.

Aubrey Ngcoboza Contact Aubrey Ngcoboza on LinkedIn
AV Technical Team - SA Parliament
Course attended: GEN111 AV Essentials and GEN112 CTS Prep
Jan 2011
In South Africa the audio visual department within Parliament is responsible for providing AV facilities in support of all parliamentary activities. In our quest to ensure transparency and good governance it's critical that we facilitate effective communication between all stakeholders. We have a large team of AV technicians who come from a broad range of backgrounds - some with experience in IT, some from an electrical background and others from the live events industry. In order to ensure we all work effectively together we've committed to work according to clearly identified standards and industry best practice. InfoComm has clearly defined these for the AV industry and the SACIA training programme has provided a fast-track learning experience for our staff. One of the things we really like about these SACIA courses is that they evolve to reflect current technology trends and focus on the science and technology behind today's modern AV systems.

Jasper Cecil Contact Jasper Cecil on LinkedIn
Audio Visual
University of KwaZulu Natal
At the University of KwaZulu Natal, the Audio Visual Division provides and maintains facilities on 5 campuses with 35 staff, who provide a variety of AV services in Durban and Pietermaritzburg. This includes a video production unit with 3 studios and 2 OB vans. We also provide AV equipment to support academic and student initiatives. The division is committed to delivering exceptional services to its clients within the University and to achieve this objective, it is critical that our staff understand the science and technology behind the audiovisual services we provide. In July 2010, we hosted the SACIA GEN111 AV Essentials class for our technical staff and we're now encouraging them to earn the InfoComm recognised AV Technologist certificate. Our objective is to ensure that all frontline staff within the Audio Visual division earn their CTS credential so that we can meet the educational objectives of the University more efficiently. We are also actively encouraging all our suppliers to demonstrate their knowledge and support capability by earning their CTS credential.

Ian Thornhill Contact Ian Thornhill on LinkedIn
Natal Video
Course attended: GEN111
July 2010
I signed on for the InfoComm GEN111 course to check it out and see whether it was appropriate to send my staff for formal training. I have been in the AV industry for around 25 years and thought I knew just about everything.
Day 1: OK- I have seriously wasted my money. This is a serious chunk of change to pay for what I believed was going to be a waste of time.
Day 2: By the end of day I realized that I had oversold myself. I know next to nothing.
Day 3: My head’s spinning. Most enjoyable. Very informative. Well presented. I now know a lot more and highly recommend that anyone in the industry, now matter how many years of experience, sign up for this course. It formalizes what you ‘may’ already know and gives a good base for the next level. Did I waste my money? No way, the course is worth every cent and more.

Gideon Taljaard Contact Gideon Taljaard on LinkedIn
AV Consulting
Course attended:
GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology & GEN112 CTS Prep

January & February 2010
I attended the SACIA AV Essentials course and was impressed with the in-depth technical knowledge that was presented. The GEN112 CTS Prep course goes one step further to focus on the broad business issues relating to the AV industry. It's an ideal platform for everyone in the AV profession and is an invaluable aid for anyone preparing to write the InfoComm CTS exam.

Mathews von Brandis Contact Mathews von Brandis on LinkedIn
Evolve AV
Course attended: GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology
Johannesburg - January 2010
For the past few years I've worked as Group Product and Sales manager in the Presentation Systems Division for one of the world's largest manufacturers of professional AV equipment. After I left the company I quickly identified that my skill set was only limited to Visual technology. I attended SACIA's AV Essentials course to broaden my knowledge on all aspects of the AV industry and bring me one step closer to my business partners. The course provided me with a much broader understanding of AV Technology and taught me about the science and application behind the equipment. I can certainly recommend this course to anyone who has just entered the AV industry as it is a fantastic platform to jumpstart your career.

Dudley Coetzee
Shellard Media
Course attended: GEN112 CTS Prep
Johannesburg – February 2010
The SACIA GEN112 CTS Prep course provides an accelerated environment for learning in the AV industry. In three days you work with the course instructor and your industry colleagues to explore key issues relating to the AV business. It's not just about technology. You interact with your colleagues and share ideas. This course touches every facet of the AV profession including sales, marketing, recruitment, HR, finance and more. It was a great learning experience that opened my eyes to professional standards in our industry. It’s great preparation for helping me earn my CTS qualification.

John Mills Contact John Mills on LinkedIn
Dimension Data
Course attended: GEN112 CTS Prep
Johannesburg - February 2010
InfoComm’s CTS credential is the global standard for excellence in the AV industry. I’ve been planning to write the CTS exam for the last few years but for whatever reason I just kept putting it off. Participating in the SACIA-run CTS Prep course helped me prepare myself – knowing what to expect from the exam removed the inertia and gave me the boost I needed. Within two weeks of completing the course I’d written the exam and earned the CTS certificate with a 90% pass rate.

Neo Kolatsoeu Contact Neo Kolatsoeu on LinkedIn
Council for Scientific and Industrial Research
Course attended:
GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology
Johannesburg – January 2010

As a world-class research facility the CSIR hosts a large number of conference rooms and presentation areas. They’re fitted out with some of the finest AV equipment available, including an integrated video conferencing system that allows us to keep in touch with other research centres around the world. Keeping all our systems working effectively requires that we keep up to date with recent technology developments and the SACIA-hosted GEN111 AV Essentials course allows us to do just that. It provides information on the broad range of AV technologies we use across our research facilities. I started my career in the AV industry 7 years ago and while I’ve participated in some internal training, this was my first in-depth learning experience. It opened my eyes to fresh opportunities and demonstrated that however much knowledge you have, there’s always an opportunity to learn more.


Andre Boyder Contact Andre Boyder on LinkedIn
Course attended:

GEN111 Essentials of AV Technology and GEN112 CTS Prep

Johannesburg – January & February 2010

With nearly 30 years experience in the professional AV industry I figured I was well equipped to design, install and maintain AV systems. The AV Essentials course highlighted many of the modern work practices adopted by the industry in recent years and brought me up-to-date on best-practice in procedures, quality and standards. Technology has developed at a rapid rate and it’s hard to keep up, but this course gave me a valuable insight into new technologies and the modern AV environment. I’d recommend it to all my industry colleagues – both young and old. Even when you’ve been in the industry for 30 years this course will give you plenty to think about.
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