Quality interpreting and translation solutions

Guidelines for architects

Guidelines for architects
Our Association is aware of the need to publicise the requirements that all simultaneous interpretation booths should meet. This information sheet is intended to provide a ready reference.
ISO 2603 is the standard containing the specifications applicable to the design and construction of built-in booths for simultaneous interpretation, so as to allow conference interpreters to provide the highest quality professional service.
The salient points of ISO 2603 are described below:
  • Booth size:
The following dimensions have been laid down in order to provide sufficient air and adequate ventilation, depending on the number of interpreters working in a booth.
Simultaneous interpretation booth size
PropertiesBuilt-in booths (ISO 2603)Mobile booths (ISO 4043)
Width 2,50m 1,60m (mmax. 2 interpreters)
2,40m (2-3 interpreters)
3,20m (3-4 interpreters)
Depth 2,40m Mobile booths (4043)
Height 2,30m Mobile booths (4043)
  • Booth location:
Booths should be no farther than 30 m from the rostrum or projection screen so that the interpreters can see the speakers clearly and read the slides. Booths at the side of the meeting room should be avoided, as they do not allow a full view of the rostrum.
  • Independent access:
Access to the booth area should not require walking through the meeting room. In addition, there should be easy access to toilets.
  • Visibility:
Booths should have large, anti-glare windows at the front and also on the sides, so that the interpreters can see the whole room properly and communicate visually with those in other booths.
  • Booth fittings:
  • Lighting:
The best solution is a central ceiling light controlled by a dimmer (not too far back, to avoid shadows), and individual table lamps.
  • Air conditioning:
Each booth should have its own control dial, independent of the main system in the building. The air conditioning should be quiet.
  • Soundproofing:
Booths should be soundproof, to prevent noise coming from the conference hall and from other booths. The AIIC Technical and Health Committee can provide copies of ISO Standard 2603 on request through AIIC members in Spain.
The standard for sound systems is IEC 60914.
Information provided by the interpreters of - Spanish Region of AIIC (International Association of Conference Interpreters) Copyright ESPaiic, 2001.
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