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Why can't I log in to Ensemble Video?

UAlbany's Ensemble Video service is provided to teaching faculty for instructional video streaming.  The system has been configured to set up accounts only for faculty whose primary department is an academic department.  If you believe that you meet this criteria, or are an instructor-of-record for a course section, but cannot log in to Ensemble Video, please call the ITS Service Desk at 518-442-3700 or submit an online Service Desk request.

Why don't students have accounts for Ensemble Video?

Students do not need an account to be able to view video.  The faculty will publish links to videos as needed for students to be able to view.

What video formats can be uploaded to Ensemble Video?

Ensemble video supports most commons audio and video content types.

What are the technical requirements to use Ensemble Video?

What's a Media Workflow and why should I care?

A Media Workflow is an encoding recipe, or instructions, to properly format the media you upload to your Media Library.  When you upload media, you will select the Workflow to be applied during the upload. 

Your Media Library has four default Workflows activated for you: 

  • Albany video - ABR - Creates 3 separate video files with different bit rates so that Ensemble Video streams the appropriate file for the viewers' bandwidth.  This is adjustable bit rate or "ABR."
  • Albany audio - MP3 - Encodes the uploaded file as an MP3 file.
  • Albany audio - AAC - Encodes the uploaded file as an AAC file.
  • No Transcode - Applies no transcoding of the file - the file would be uploaded as-is in the same format and bit rate.

For uploading most video content, we recommend that you use the "Albany video - ABR" Media Workflow, which is set as the default Workflow in your Media Library.

Best Practice for uploading Zoom Videos

If you are uploading videos from Zoom, use the No Transcode media workflow.  This will avoid the video from getting re-compressed and fuzzy. 

How many videos can I upload to the Media Library?

Your Media Library has a storage limit of 25GB. That translates to how many hours of video you can store in Ensemble (get ready for some math!):

Best Practice for Managing Files

Files are deleted annually so be sure to keep a copy of files uploaded to Ensemble. 

  • You can upload an unlimited number of media file (as long as you don't exceed the total amount of storage space of 25GB)
  • The ABR conversion rate is 0.35MB of storage space for each second of video
  • How big or small (video resolution) the files were before or after conversion has no impact on the file size in Ensemble. The Ensemble Automatic Bit Rate (ABR) recipe is fixed as to frame size, frame rate, total bitrate and audio codec setting and will always result in files sizes directly related to Video Length in Seconds (VLS).
  • 25GB of storage will provide roughly 20 hours and 18 minutes of video.
    • 1 second of video =  0.35MB of storage space
    • 1 minute of video =  21MB of storage space
    • 1 hour or video =  1260 MB or 1.23GB
    • To get the estimated storage space or your video multiply the Video Length in Seconds (VLS) by 0.35MB.
      • the average modern feature-length movie is about 76 minutes, so 76 minutes x 60 (seconds in a minute) x 0.35MB = 1596MB or 1.56GB. 76 minutes x 60 seconds = 4560 seconds (VLS)
      • for a 5-minute "welcome to this class" introduction video you would use 105MB, 5 minutes x 60 seconds x 0.35MB = 105MB or 0.1GB. 5 minutes x 60 seconds = 300 seconds (VLS)
    • You would have room for about 16 feature-length movies or about 195 5-minutes videos

How long will my files remain in my Ensemble Media Library?

To manage the cost of storage and usage, Ensemble files will be deleted bi-annually based on age and viewing status using the following criteria:

  • Files older than one year that have never been viewed.
  • Files last viewed longer than two years prior.

Ensemble Video Media Clean Up process.

How can I download/archive my files?

Click the Download button for a selected video in your Media Library.  More...

Can other people access my Media Library?

Only you have direct access to your Media Library.  However, video and audio files and access can be shared in a few ways. 

How can I add closed captions to my videos?

While a transcription service is not provided through the campus, you can either upload a caption file for your video or use a vendor service to provide the captioning.  There are various considerations and requirements for both of these options.  The Ensemble Video support website provides more details.

Transcription service vendors:

How do I restrict viewing access to only my students?

You are in control of how you publish and share your videos.  The method we recommend for limiting viewing access to only students enrolled in your courses is to publish the video on a secure Playlist for viewing only within Blackboard.  

Once I have my video uploaded, can my students download the video?

You are in control over whether or not to allow downloading your videos.  We recommend that you publish your videos on a secure Playlist that does not allow download.

Can I have students submit video assignments using Ensemble Video?

Yes.  Ensemble Video has a "Dropbox" feature that instructors can set up to allow students to submit videos.   Remember: these videos count against your storage quota.

Can I publish video publicly?

Yes, but remember that you must comply with copyright law

ITLAL usually handles my video needs.  Will they still help me?

Yes.  ITLAL is still providing media conversion services


Need more help? Submit an ITS Service Desk Request.