Media Stations are located in over one hundred general-use classrooms and in conference rooms throughout campus. Media stations are outfitted with an assortment of technology including: DVD/VHS/CD combination players, laptop connections (both video and audio), controls for classroom video projector and speaker units, and microphones (in lecture halls). There is no cost for use of the media station, and the media stations all work the same way so once you know one system you know them all.
Laptops can be connected to media stations with 15-pin VGA cables installed in each room. Adaptors may be necessary for some computers, particularly Macs. Stereo mini-plug cables for audio from laptops or MP3 players are also installed. Laptops can be connected to the internet, via ethernet or wireless connections. Ethernet cables are installed alongside the other cables, which are generally located in the front of the room either on the podium or under the media station. Instructors using campus internet for the first time need to set up an account with Academic Computing and Telecommunications before their class. Here is a link to the ACT form.
In lecture halls, wired microphones are located in the front of the room, and wireless microphones are located inside the media station. Extra batteries for the wireless microphones are also available in the media station. Overhead projectors are installed in all classrooms with media stations. Extra bulbs are stored inside overhead projector units and instructions for changing the bulbs are located on the projector. For information on which rooms have media stations see classroom details. For detailed operating instructions see media station directions. To request a quick training session with a tech email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
You may also find these video tutorials helpful:
The control panel, located on the top of the Media Station, has the projector power, input, and volume controls. When you are ready to use the Media Station, first turn the projector power on and wait for the projector to warm up for about 40 seconds. While you are waiting you might want to lower the projection screen.
After turning the projector on and waiting for it to warm up, select the DVD/VHS input. Turn the DVD/VHS deck on, insert your DVD or VHS tape, and select the DVD or VHS format button that is applicable to the format you are using. If you are using a DVD press the open/close button to open and close the DVD tray. Please don't push the tray closed. Press the play button, and adjust the volume on the control panel.
After turning the projector on and waiting for it to warm up, connect the VGA output to the laptop monitor output. Make network and audio connections if desired, then select the Laptop input. Turn on your laptop last. (You may be unable to connect if you turn your computer on before connecting all the cables and selecting the input. See troubleshooting below.)
Purchase a stereo mini to RCA cable (RadioShack 42-2550 or equivalent). Connect the cable to your device, then connect the cable to the left and right audio inputs on the front of the DVD/VHS combination deck. Press the volume up button on the control panel; the level indicators will light to indicate audio-only mode is activated. Turn the DVD/VHS deck on. Select "L2" with the channel selector buttons on the DVD/VHS deck. (L2 is below channel 2.) Set your device volume to about half-way initially. Play a track and adjust the volume to suit you. Raise the volume on the Media Station control panel if necessary.
First, press the volume up button on the control panel; the level indicators will light to indicate audio-only mode is activated. Press the open/close button to open the DVD tray. Load the CD, then press the open/close button to close the tray. Press play, adjust the volume to suit you, and use the skip buttons to select your track.
Projector Tip 1: If your computer was on before you connected the VGA cable you may need to toggle between screens. On many Windows laptops this involves holding the Fn key and pressing F8 key, up to three times to cycle through each possible screen configuration. (The monitor toggle key varies from computer to computer, but is often indicated by two overlapping square icons or a monitor-like icon located on the appropriate key.)
Projector Tip 2: If you have connected your laptop but the projector is not reading the signal, try pressing the desired input button again to reselect the input.
Projector Tip 3: If you connect your laptop and you don't get an image projected on the screen, check the connections at the wall plates under the chalkboard. The supplied VGA cable should be connected to the 15 pin connector on the wall plate.
Projector Tip 4: Check your laptop’s resolution and refresh rate settings. For best results, resolution should be set to 1024 x 768, refresh rate at 75 Hz. On the Mac, select System Preferences... From the Apple menu, then click on the Displays icon. For most Windows computers, right-click on the desktop and select Properties, then select the Settings tab to access the resolution control; click on the Advanced button, then select Monitors to locate refresh rate control.
Projector Tip 5: If your projector shuts off in the middle of your lecture, just turn the projector power on again at the Media Station control panel. Projectors will time off if they have been on for more than three hours and no signals have been sent to the panel. To prevent this from happening, restart the projector power at the beginning of your class if the projector has been left on.
Projector Tip 6: Call for help. Help Desk: 534.5784