New Studio, New Era


Morgan McGrew

Morgan McGrew | A&L Editor

This summer, the digital media and communications building, Lage, received a much needed upgrade. The building is home to the University Cable Network (UCN), in which a brand new HD TV studio was implemented.

Previously, UCN relied on a standard definition analog studio. Remember what it was like watching Rugrats on Saturday mornings in the ‘90s? What about the video cassettes that we used to pop in to watch a Disney movie? Everything on UCN used to look like and work like that. Until now.

Now, when UCN finishes shooting one of their shows, everything will transfer from the new HD JVC cameras right over to their computer system. It is truly a completely digital studio. The studio upgrade did not happen overnight. The UCN team spent many full 8-hour work days preparing the new studio for the 2016-17 school year.

“The day after graduation, we started pulling all of the old stuff out,” said Digital Media Support Specialist, Myckeal Rake. “We gutted the entire studio. All of the cables got pulled out.”

Rake and UCN station manager Spencer Bottorff spent all of June disassembling the old studio. Technology support company, AVI Systems installed the new studio throughout all of July. August was reserved as a training period for the UCN team.

UCN Studios advisor, Professor Jerry Johnson noted that the new HD studio should bring about many more opportunities for students. “It will provide students experience with not only traditional media, but new media, like online streaming,” he said.

Johnson explained that the new studio technology should allow for UCN to be more accessible. “Hopefully the upgrade will allow UCN channel 3 to be a part of digital TV channels in the community,” he said.

Bottorff is certainly excited about the makeover. “I’m so happy about not dealing with tapes anymore. Now it [the footage] will just go straight to the computer. That is a beautiful thing,” he said.

UCN will be covering the Beavers vs. Simpson game on the 24th as their first live production with the new studio. Tune in to Channel 3 this fall to see the new HD studio in action.

Photos by Morgan McGrew