ClearOne Implements First-Class Audio Solution at Utica College’s Donahue Auditorium

Having worked with AV technology for most of his professional career, Mike Roberts, Director of Technology at Utica College, recognized the necessity for a first-rate microphone upgrade in the institution’s Donahue Auditorium lecture hall which would provide complete audio coverage for both instructors and students alike. Roberts turned to ClearOne (NASDAQ: CLRO), a global market leader enabling conferencing, collaboration, and network streaming solutions, for the solution that would meet his needs.

Located in the heart of Central New York, Utica College is a comprehensive, independent, private institution that offers many of the advantages of a large university, such as undergraduate and graduate degree options, excellent academic programs, and outstanding faculty, but with an intimacy and a high degree of personal attention more closely associated with smaller private colleges.

The Utica College Donahue Auditorium is primarily used for lectures and seminars, including the famous “Asa Gray Seminar Series”, the longest-running seminar series at Utica College through which scientists are invited from all around the U.S. to present seminars regarding their ongoing research.

According to Roberts; “We were getting some complaints from students about not being heard from the back of the classroom. We wanted to improve the learning experience for these students, and allow their voices to be heard, regardless of where they were in the room.”

Knowing the advantages of ClearOne’s superior performing beamforming microphone technology, in addition to his positive experiences using the ClearOne CONVERGE® Pro 2 professional-voice DSP platform on the campus, Roberts was confident that ClearOne could provide a solution that would meet their demands while addressing the acoustic difficulties of the room.

“Being a big, wide-open space, people speaking in the back of the auditorium could not be heard by remote listeners. Since we installed the new ClearOne system, students can be heard from wherever they are in the room,” he explained.

The installation Roberts specified and installed included two ClearOne BMA2 beamforming microphone arrays that are ceiling mounted in addition to a CONVERGE Pro2 48T Audio DSP. 

Roberts also installed ClearOne UNITE® 20 professional webcams in every classroom throughout the campus because of their superior image quality, wide-angle lens, mounting versatility and exceptional value.

Roberts said he loves the sleek and modern appearance of the microphones mounted from the ceiling and the simplicity of the ClearOne architecture, having to install only a single CAT6 cable from the equipment location to the microphones.

“The installation process was very easy,” he emphasized. “We were able to connect the entire system with network cables. Once everything was connected, we collaborated with ClearOne to fine-tune the audio and ensure the system was working as efficiently as possible.”

Perhaps most importantly, this recently installed system perfectly met student/teacher requirements by providing high-quality program audio and speech reinforcement, and audio for Zoom, Google Meet, and the other video conferencing applications utilized by the school.

Utica College plans to continue working with ClearOne in the future by installing Versa Pro CTs in as many classrooms as possible to optimize online learning. The Versa Pro CT is a superior room solution for Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) collaboration.

“Our prestigious MBA program has been hybrid since before the pandemic, so the Versa Pro CT certainly enables smooth collaboration both inside of our classrooms and in a virtual setting,” he concluded.

The college also plans to install BMA360 beamforming microphone arrays and the Unite 200 Camera in the physics lab of the new science center, which broke ground last summer.