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Working with Capture Appliances
Last Updated: Aug 21, 2018 12:53PM EDT

This article applies to:  Echo360 Admins
Capture appliances record classroom activities and upload those recordings for processing and publishing to students. The three types of classroom capture devices are:
  • SafeCapture HD (SCHD) - Fully automated capture hardware that records class content and uploads the recordings for processing and publishing. For installation and configuration details for the SCHD, see SafeCapture HD Specifications.
    Maximum allowed duration of recordings is 4 hours
  • Echo360 PRO (PRO) - The next generation of automated capture hardware, that records class content and uploads the recordings for processing and publishing. For installation and configuration details for the PRO, see Echo360 PRO Specifications.
    Maximum allowed duration of recordings is 8 hours
  • Classroom Capture - Instead of being a physical appliance, Classroom Capture (CCAP) is software installed on classroom or podium PCs that turns the PC into a capture appliance that can capture video, computer screen, and audio input from the classroom. Like the SCHD and PRO appliances, it automatically uploads the recordings for processing and publishing. For installation and configuration details for CCAP, see Classroom Capture Specifications.
    Maximum allowed duration of recordings is 8 hours
  • Echo360 POD - A smaller version of our full-featured capture appliance, the POD has been designed for use in smaller venues, where the POD can be placed on a tabletop or podium, or where the recording device is not necessarily static (professors can plug in their laptops for display capture, for example). It contains HDMI inputs as well as an audio input and can capture audio from either or both. In addition, because the POD is a registered appliance, it can be scheduled for regular captures of classes (including Live streamed classes) or when using the touchscreen, easily used for ad hoc captures. For installation and configuration details for the POD, see Echo360 POD Specifications.
    Maximum allowed duration of recordings is 8 hours
  • Universal Capture - Instead of being a physical appliance, Universal Capture is the next generation of recording software installed on classroom or podium PCs that turns the PC into a capture appliance that can capture video, computer screen, and audio input from the classroom. Currently available for the Mac, Windows support coming soon. For installation and configuration details for Universal Capture, see Universal Capture Specifications.
    Maximum allowed duration of recordings is 8 hours

Personal Capture is a capture method but is not considered a capture appliance for the purposes of associating with a classroom or class schedule.

Also be sure to refer to Supported Input Devices for information on what input devices (cameras and microphones) are supported for use with Echo360 capture appliances.

Capture appliances, as well as Personal Capture, cannot record HDCP-restricted content: Be sure to install your capture appliances in a room that does not include devices protected by HDCP (High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection). Echo360 capture appliances cannot record high-definition content protected by HDCP.
If instructors are in the habit of bringing their own devices and plugging them into a console for display recording, note that newer Mac computers have HDCP enabled. In some cases, instructors will attempt to play HD content that is restricted by HDCP on the Mac, causing the display feed to be blank, to appear as disconnected, or to record/return very low-quality resolution. In this case, users can play the content in Standard Definition or attempt another workaround.

Log On and Monitor Device

Once initialized and assigned to a room, you may want to log on to the device and monitor it to check that the appropriate inputs are working and providing capture information.

You can use the below procedures to monitor a device while idle or during a capture if necessary.

To log on to the device and monitor activity

  1. From the main menu, select ROOMS.
  2. Find the room with the device you want to monitor. Use the filtering lists at the top of the screen to narrow which rooms are shown.
  3. Click the Log in to Device icon, located in the bottom-left corner of the Room block.
  4. Log in to the device using the device login information configured for the device.
  5. Use the tabs to select the device information you want to review. The Monitor tab allows you to view the configured inputs to see what they are capturing.
  6. If you are monitoring inputs, click Stop Monitoring when you are done.
  7. When you are finished reviewing device information, click Logout, located in the upper-right corner of the tabbed section of the page.

Filtering Rooms by Device Status

The filtering lists at the top of the Rooms Management page allow you to limit which room blocks are shown based on their location (campus, building) or by type (SCHD, Classroom Capture, etc.).

You can also "favorite" any rooms that may require special attention, to show those specifically as needed. Click the star icon located to the left of a room/device name to favorite or un-favorite a room.

Each of the room blocks also shows the current status of the device assigned to the room: capturing, idle, offline, or unconnected.

To list rooms based on device status

  1. Select Rooms from the main menu.
  2. Click the Switch to list view icon, located on the right side of the screen, directly below the Add Room button.
    The Rooms Management screen changes to list device status as banners that can be expanded. Along with each status label, there is a number that indicates how many rooms/devices are in that state.
  3. Click the triangle to the left of each status label to expand the device list and show all devices with that status.
  4. Hover over each device row to show the drop-down arrow on the far right side of the row. Click the drop-down arrow for a menu of options for the device.

Disk Space utilization during Recordings

In order to reduce the risk of running out of space, previously uploaded logs and content (including content that could not be uploaded due to disk errors) are deleted during an active recording. If necessary, the recording will be stopped prior to either the scheduled end time or the maximum allowed duration in order for more space to be made. For closely spaced captures, under load disk space conditions, subsequent recordings may not be able to start until the initial one finishes uploading.

  • The SCHD should not run out of space if it’s connected to the network and is able to upload.
  • The PRO should not run out of space if it’s connected to the network and is able to upload.
  • Classroom Capture requires the user to maintain sufficient disk space on the computer but will still clean up Echo360 created logs and content as needed.
  • The POD may not be able to record the full 8 hours depending on the following factors
    • The quality of the recording (Standard, High or Highest)
    • What type of input is being recorded (Display or Video)
    • The nature of what is being recorded (High motion video, PowerPoint slides, etc.)
  • Universal Capture requires the user to maintain sufficient disk space but will still clean up Echo360 created logs and content as needed.
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