MPS News & Articles

  • Congrats, Graduates!
    May 14, 2017 —

    Congrats to our MPS graduates, today.  It's been a pleasure to work with Savannah, Alex, and Chase.  All three of these students are looking to further their careers in the field - and all three are very talented. 

    The Media Production Studio staff is proud of you - Congratulations!

  • Hello, Summer!
    May 12, 2017 —

    Happy end-of-semester.  And to those of you graduating this weekend, congratulations!

    Mid-May brings fun times here to the MPS.  We will be shortening our hours between semesters (8am-5pm, weekdays), and will be closed on the weekends.  It’s the perfect time for us to catch up on projects and recharge/redesign some of our services.

    Most-dramatically, we are suspending our equipment checkout indefinitely, effective May 12.  For budgetary reasons, we will enter the Summer months concentrating our time and resources on supporting our recording spaces, post-production lab, campus-wide applications, as well as MPS remote event production support, and our departmental production projects.

    While we know that removing a popular checkout service has significant impact, it’s important to MPS staff that we’re managing services we can be proud of.  The fiscal restraints weren’t going to allow us to continue to feel that way about our checkout service.

    The MPS space, supported by KU IT and CODL, is both expanding and improving our recording spaces this Summer – you might consider how you can use these spaces for your project, rather than the remote equipment you would have checked out in the past.  Feel free to talk to our staff about new functionality that we will be adding.  I’ll also be featuring those here in this space, in upcoming weeks.

    Here’s to a productive (or relaxing) Summer – whichever you’re looking for.  Maybe a whole lot of both!

    - John

  • Final Stretch...
    April 12, 2017 —

    Just a friendly reminder that we're here, ready to help, for these last few weeks of the semester. Our equipment checkout is moving at a quick pace, so if you need to complete a project - make sure and get a reservation in as quickly as you're able.

    Let us know if we can do anything to help your project get where it needs to go.  Our student and full-time staff our working through our own projects, but we are here to serve.  Just grab anyone and we'll see it we can help.

    Good luck!

    - John

  • Spring Break Hours
    March 17, 2017 —

    We will have shortened hours over Spring Break.  We'll be open Monday - Friday, from 8am to 5pm.  We will not be open in the evenings nor on the weekends.  Seems that most of our students are leaving town and having a real break.  Good for them.

    Don't be a stranger next, though.  When we are open, we'll be relatively quiet - a great time to come in and catch up on a project.  Or start a new one.  Not only is our lab open and recording spaces schedule-able, but our equipment checkout is be available all week as well.

    There are alternatives to binging Netflix all week - that's all we're saying. 

    Have a safe and happy break!

  • Music for Your Project
    February 19, 2017 —

    Is your video project is in need of some background music?  Or does your podcast need an theme song opening to set you apart?  There are a number of legal options for you to find that right song, and I thought it might be helpful to list some ideas. 

    Reminder:  without a good Fair Use argument, simply ripping a commercial CD or downloading your favorite song will be a copyright violation.  And if your video will be hosted on a service like YouTube, it's likely that your music will be flagged or stripped from the upload.

    The best idea, of course, is to do it the right way and find music you can use legally.  Here are a couple of ideas:

    1. Use MPS' Killer Tracks licensing
      The Media Production Studio has a license agreement with Killer Tracks.  The MPS has licensed a large portion of Killer Tracks library - over 1,000 CDs worth.  We offer access for non-broadcast productions.  You can gain access, talk to one of our staff for login info. You'll be able to browse and sample Killer Tracks audio files online, and download WAV, MP3 or AIFF formats.  This access is limited to KU Faculty, Staff and Students.
    2. Find Creative Commons Music
      Creative Commons licensing allows content creators - include music makers - the ability to share their work, and have their work used by others, set on their own terms.  You can search the Creative Commons database.  Or you can filter for CC work on sites like Flickr, YouTube, and Soundcloud.  Just make sure you follow the terms of each license (attribution, non-commercial use, etc).  You can find more information about how Creative Commons licensing works by visiting their website.
    3. Other Copyright-Free Sources
      I came across a blog post linked from reddit recently, which was a fun list of other sources.  I may or may not have spent an hour on the BenSound website.
    4. Create Your Own Music
      Yeah, I'm with most of you - I'm not doing that either.  But some of you have the talent and skills to pull it off.  And as with anything - music, images, video - no one ever claimed copyright infringement over something you made yourself.  Just another element that can make your project more "yours."

    Happy Sound-Hunting!


  • Let There Be Light!
    February 6, 2017 —

    We made a Lightboard.

    (“What’s a lightboard,” you say?  I’m glad you asked.)

    A lightboard is an active and attractive way to explain and demonstrate content to your audience, with your own handwriting.  Essentially a “glass chalkboard,” the lightboard uses neon colors to have your written text stand out and make a lasting impression.  LED lights illuminate the glass to make the markers really pop-out.  The effect is that the instructor is actually writing on your computer screen.

    Northwestern University was an early innovator with this instructional hardware solution.  For our construction, we followed assembly plans developed by Duke University.  Assembly took a few months, and we’ve recently been testing.  We’re ready to open the gates – the lightboard is now an operational option in our studio space.  Big thanks to our own Neil Rasmussen, who was the mastermind behind its fabrication.

    The Center for Online Distance Learning is having a Lunch and Learn conversation this week about using the lightboard in the creation of online instructional materials.  Thursday, February 9, from 12-1pm in Budig, Room 6.  Doug Ward and I will be demonstrating the technology and talking strategies and best practices.

    If you can’t make that, feel free to reach out to me (, 864-2603) for more information.

  • Welcome Back!
    January 17, 2017 —

    Welcome back to campus.  We hope you all (students, faculty, & staff) had a great Holiday break.  The Media Production Studio has a number of projects in the works for this semester, and we also look forward to assisting you with yours. 

    You might see some changes in the Budig Lab in the upcoming weeks as we're expanding and shuffling some services and space.  Specifically, the Budig lab's large open Windows/PC workstation area will be transitioned next week to a temporary training lab.  If you've used those workstations in the past, you will probably want to travel the 50 yards (or so) over to Anschutz and use a workstation there.  Not only have they become a "hot spot" for student lab workspace, but they've also just got a large number of new computers installed.

    In the Budig Lab, our workstations (the MPS Macs) will still be here, and the two current classroom spaces (Budig Instruction Lab and Small PC Lab) are still active.

    We're here to help - come visit us and see what we can do for you and your production project. 

    Have a great semester!

    John Rinnert
    Coordinator, Media Production Studio

  • MPS Winter Break Hours
    December 15, 2016 —

    Snow at KUThe Media Production Studio will be open over the Winter Break.  But since Budig lab traffic takes a predictable dip with classes out, we will have reduced hours.  It's a great time to start or complete a project, so feel free to come work in our space.  We'll try to keep the heat on.

    From 12/16/2016 to 1/17/2017, here are our hours:
    Monday-Thursday:  8 a.m. - 8 p.m.
    Friday:  8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
    Weekends:  Closed

    We will be closed for the following state holidays:
    Christmas Day (observed) - Dec. 26, 2016
    New Year's Day (observed) - Jan. 2, 2017
    Martin Luther King Day - Jan. 16, 2017

    Our normal 2-day checkout policies will be in effect over the entire break.  Weekends and holidays will not count against the 2-day checkouts.  (If you pick up on a Thursday or Friday, equipment will be due back on Monday.) 

    We will return to normal semester hours on the first day of class:  Tuesday, January 17th.  Have a great break!

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