Improving Your Lecture Recordings

  • CAEN’s Lecture Capture Service is an automated option for recording most classroom courses and events.
  • Video and audio of the instructor are recorded, along with the whiteboard, and any slides or other content being projected.
  • The service will automatically create a nice web-based viewer with thumbnail navigation and separate views for video and slide content.

A typical classroom is a challenging space for recording. Most were not designed with video in mind, so lighting and layout are not ideal. The following tips may help you increase the production value of the recordings you make using the lecture capture service:

  • Set the camera’s preset – When an automated recording starts, the recorder positions the camera to cover a wide area around the lectern. You can adjust this preset to better match where you stand while lecturing. The preset that is recalled at the start of a recording is the “wide” preset, which you can set using the manual recording controls.  More information is available on using the manual controls, or contact CAEN for assistance.
  • Use the wireless microphone – Every classroom with lecture recording capability includes a clip-on wireless microphone. Using this microphone will give the best audio on the recording. Clip it to your clothing about 6 inches below your chin, and place the transmitter in a pocket or clip it to your clothing. Remember to turn it on by sliding the Off-Standby-On switch all the way to On. Note that most classrooms also have a backup mic that will pick up audio if the wireless microphone is not used, but the wireless microphone gives the best results.
  • Turn off your mobile phone – Radio transmissions from mobile phones can sometimes cause a chirping/clicking sound on your recording, or from the speakers in the room. If you must leave the phone on, keep it as far as possible from any microphones and A/V equipment.
  • Avoid using a laser pointer – The laser dot is not picked up well by the recorder, and can even be difficult to see in the room. A simple alternative is to display the computer’s mouse cursor.
  • Match your laptop’s resolution to the projector – Your laptop should detect and use the native resolution of the projector automatically. If not, adjust your laptop’s resolution setting to 1920 x 1200 (or if that’s not listed, select 1920 x 1080). Doing this helps to eliminate black bars, stretched images, or even the possibility of no slides showing up at all. Other resolutions may work, but if you experience problems, try changing to the projector’s native resolution.

When recording video:

  • Adjust the room lights to provide as much light at the front of the room as possible, while still ensuring good visibility of the projection screen (if being used).
  • Wear camera-friendly clothing. Generally, choose solid pastel colors, and avoid fine patterns, white, or dark colors. Avoid jewelry that could add audible noise or bright flashes for the camera.