Another night that just was further proof that there's nothing like a good team! I had to be at the hotel at 5 for a meeting starting at 6:30. 16 channel mackie, wireless lav mic, four boundary mics and a Telos phone patch. Arrived exactly on time, started setting up, greeted the client, dialed the teleconference, tested the lav mic and the ambient table mics, put phone patch on hold and the client says "oh and you can record this meeting too right?" Me : uh, no, recording wasn't mentioned on my order. Client claims my co-worker who took the order told him recording would only be an extra $100 and I explain that it didn't make it onto the order but I can call and see if anyone is available to bring the gear required. Find out the meeting doesn't really start until 7 anyway so it should be no problem. Make the call, grumpy co-worker agrees to put dinner with the family on hold to give me an assist. In the mean time I'm sitting at the tech table and notice a strange persistent level on the meter on the phone patch. Grab headphones to examine more closely and hear a low buzz, like 85 hz or so. Check the line with test phone, line is clear. Swap interface cables, no change. Tweak gain structure, no change. Make alternative test call to cell phone, no change. Meter power supply - nothing unusual...13.something volts, standard for a 12v unregulated wall-wart. Plug in and try one more time...still buzzing, unusable. Had to call Mike back and have him grab the other phone patch from the shop. All was ok in the end - Mike, my co-worker arrived with 15 minutes to spare with a cd recorder, media and a replacement phone patch. Teleconference successful, client happy and impressed with our ability to cope with equipment failures beyond our control, and clerical errors beyond my immediate control. Just makes you realize how important it can be to have a backup team "waiting in the wings." Don't know what happened to the phone patch, that's tomorrow's task - autopsy.