Johannes Kepler University Linz takes hybrid teaching to a new level
TrackingMaster has worked alongside Panasonic to install a cutting-edge camera system into their lecture hall. The combination of a high-quality PTZ camera and auto-tracking software, enables the university to produce excellent video for hybrid teaching - as live streams or recordings.
Client: Johannes Kepler University (JKU)
Product(s) supplied: AW-UE40
Before the installation, the university was already working with a system consisting of a tracking solution and a camera from another manufacturer. However, this could only be controlled via a touchpad and lacked intelligent tracking functions that could be used to convey a lively and comprehensible image of the lecture.
System integrator Gendo GmbH installed Panasonic's AW-UE40 PTZ camera alongside TrackingMaster's intelligent camera tracking. This provides the university the ability to record lectures while capturing every element in high quality that meets the current standards of hybrid teaching.
"We only work with camera manufacturers that deliver high quality - anything else inevitably falls on us as well. That's why Panasonic is one of only two manufacturers we work with for hybrid education."
Since the COVID-19 pandemic, hybrid education concepts have experienced an enormous upswing. Today, students expect lectures or seminars via live broadcast just as office workers expect the online vitural meetings. The only difference is that a special challenge arises in the university: After all, the lecture must be recorded in such a way that the elements that are relevant for the students always remain in the picture, and these elements change in each case. This can be the lecturer, their facial expressions and gestures, which make the recording livelier, but often it is also the blackboard image, which must be captured in a clearly visible way.
Those responsible at JKU already used a camera in the past, but it had to be controlled via touchpad by a third person or the individual lecturer. This was a bridge solution that made it difficult to always capture the optimal image section. At the same time, it made it difficult for the lecturers to concentrate fully on teaching.
After an extensive test with a demo system, the choice finally fell on Panasonic and TrackingMaster. "We are thrilled by the simple and intuitive integration of the overall system into the existing media landscape," says Dominik Seyrl, Managing Director of Gendo. The system integrator installed Panasonic's PTZ camera and TrackingMaster in the room and integrated them into the media control system so that teachers can intuitively control the technology with just a few clicks and no prior knowledge or training.
"The brilliance of the high-resolution Panasonic 4K cameras in combination with the state-of-the-art auto-tracking system from TrackingMaster trigger a wow effect for our customers."
TrackingMaster uses lidar sensors installed in the room at shin height to accurately detect the position of people. The software uses this data to control Panasonic's camera. The wide-angle lens of the AW-UE40 PTZ camera captures expansive areas such as an auditorium with a 74.1-degree viewing angle, even in limited space. The 24x optical zoom guarantees excellent image quality even at high zoom levels, for example when the blackboard image comes into focus. Last but not least, the camera can produce high-quality video and digital natives: the AW-UE40 features a new 1/2.5-type 4K MOS sensor for true 4K resolution UHD videos of 1,500 TV lines (UHD).
The quality of lecture recording and live online events is raised to a new level by this solution. This can all be accomplished without additional staff and significantly lower costs, overall producing a more stable and maintainable image quality.
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