Multimedia & AV FAQs

Q: What is the difference between Zoom meetings and Zoom webinars?

Zoom meetings are usually used when all participants are expected or have the ability to participate equally: depending on the way the Zoom meeting is configured, participants can turn their mics and cameras on and can share their content. Breakout rooms are possible in Zoom meetings, and Zoom meetings are available with the Basic Zoom license. Zoom account pricing is based on number of meeting participants; eg, up to 100, 300, 500, and 1000.

Zoom webinars are usually used when the format of the session is one-to-many; ie, one presenter will do most of the talking and sharing of their content and the audience is neither heard nor seen. Audience participation is usually limited to chat and asking questions via a Q & A tool. Webinars are an add-on to Zoom licenses, with pricing based on the number of webinar attendees from 500 to 10,000.

Q: What are media file types?

Media file types are the various ways in which media can be encoded in order that they play back in expected ways for different purposes. File types are denoted by the 3 (or 4) characters after the name of the file and preceded by a period.

File types contain specific codecs that allow the media to be read by an operating system, media player or application. While many codecs play on many current devices, they are not standardized and universally compatible. A common file type such as one listed below may have been compressed using an uncommon or defunct codec, resulting in a file that will no longer play.

Sometimes, media files need to be converted from one file type to another to be used in an application. If the file is quite old and uses a defunct codec, it may not be able to be converted.

Common video file types are:

  • .mov
  • .mp4
  • .avi
  • .mpg

Common audio file types are:

  • .mp3
  • .wav
  • .m4a
  • .aiff

Common still image file types are:

  • .jpg medi
  • .jpeg
  • .png
  • .gif

Q. When I try to view a video in Elentra, I am not authorized to view it. How can I resolve this?

Videos in the MD Program are played from either Stream, which is Microsoft O365's video platform, or from Panopto, the MD Program's new video delivery platform. To get permission to view a video that you think you should be able to access, do the following:

If you are tyring to play a video in a Year 1 or Year 2 course in 2022, go to the home page of the course and click the Course Videos link in the left menu.

If that doesn't work or you are having other playback issues, please send an email to with the following information:

  • the course title
  • the page Elentra page url with the video (it will look something like this:
  • your name
  • your utoronto email address
  • if you are a student, your year of graduation (eg, 2T5)
  • if you are a faculty member or tutor, the course you are teaching or tutoring in

Q: What is “aspect ratio” and why should I care?

Aspect ratio refers to the ratio of a display screen’s width to height. Historically, video screens have been almost square with a ratio of 4:3. Recently, this has been replaced with 16:9 or 16:10 ratios, which show a much wider image when compared to height. If you are showing presentations in any of the Discovery Commons or Mississauga Academy supported rooms, such as the lecture rooms: MSB 3153, MSB 3154, HSC 130, HSC 140 or the meeting rooms MSB 3174, MSB 3175, HSC 170, or HSC 210, you may be interested to know that they display in the 16:9 ratio. In MSB 3175, the 2 LCD displays are 16:9, while the Smart Screen display is 4:3. The default ratio for creating Microsoft Powerpoint presentations is usually set to display in 4:3; changing this setting to create 16:9 presentations or changing your existing 4:3 presentations to 16:9 allows you to take advantage of all of the screen real estate and makes for a more visually appealing presentation.

Q: What is the difference between “hosting” and “posting” a media file?

When media, such as a video or audio, appears on a web page, there are two necessary elements that allow it to play: one is the text on the screen, known as a hyperlink, (or an image--more on that below), and the other is the fact that there is a media file on a server somewhere that the text is linked to. The hyperlink (commonly referred to simply as the link) is posted on a webpage; the media file is hosted on the server. Sometimes, in place of a link, a “player” is embedded on the web page (sometimes this is referred to as an “embed code”), which appears to play to media file directly on the page. However, the media file itself is still hosted on (and plays from) a remote server.

Q: I need help logging into the Teaching Station for my lecture. What do I do?

Using the touch screen, you can log into the teaching station with your UTORid and password. If you do not have access, press the intercom button on the lectern for assistance, or call Learning Space Management at 416-978-0423.

Q: How do the student microphones in the videoconference lecture theatres work?

A student presses the microphone button in front of them to alert the professor they have a question. The Take Next button on the lectern lights up in blue and a red light turns on just above the centre monitor to indicate there is a student question. The professor presses the button and waits for a few seconds until they hear the student question.

Q: How Do I Enable Third Party Cookies in Panopto Supported Browsers?

Because we are using the video delivery platform Panopto via Elentra, third party cookies need to be enabled in your browser. Click the link to learn how to do this in Chrome, Firefox, IE, Edge, Safari, and iOS: