Coming to Dartmouth: Panopto

Dartmouth has rolled out Panopto as a comprehensive video recording, management and delivery platform. This article explains what Panopto is, why we are adopting it, what it will be replacing, and what the approximate timeline for any of these changes will be.

What is Panopto?

Panopto is a software platform which provides the following services in one integrated suite of tools: 

  • Pre-recorded video hosting and streaming

  • Video content management (searching, sharing, permissions, and editing)

  • Screencasting/recording

  • Storing and hosting Zoom Cloud recordings in one place

  • In-classroom lecture recording (aka classroom or lecture capture)

  • Easy delivery of any video or recording via Canvas

Panopto was developed for and by higher ed institutions (Carnegie Mellon), and is widely used by our peers, including most of the Ivies.

What’s Dartmouth doing with Panopto, and why?

Dartmouth has been phasing in Panopto as the primary course video platform for the institution. The move to remote learning precipitated by COVID-19 has been one of the most important drivers of the decision to move to Panopto, since it surfaced the shortcomings of our existing media solutions.

Panopto represents a consolidation of several tools for Dartmouth, which will simplify and streamline video creation and management at the institution. Videos that have been created in a variety of other platforms are being systematically moved over to Panopto. We will end up with all media comprehensively managed in one single platform: Panopto. From there, media can easily be shared and integrated into other tools, such as Canvas.

What will Panopto be replacing at Dartmouth?

Panopto will be replacing three video tools, and also house content created by a fourth:

  1. TechSmith Relay (recently rebranded as Knowmia): This tool has been available at Dartmouth for over a decade, and is well liked for its simplicity. However, heavy usage during remote teaching has shown that the tool’s video delivery is not as robust as we would like - many students have reported stuttering playback and bandwidth related issues.

  2. Echo 360: This is the classroom capture solution currently installed in a number of Dartmouth classrooms. Echo works well enough, but is expensive, and uses proprietary recording hardware, which makes it difficult to scale up rapidly to more rooms. 

  3. Kaltura: This tool is used widely in the corporate world. At Dartmouth, we have used Kaltura for many years to deliver the library’s streaming media content, in particular. Kaltura’s drawback is that it is very complex, and trying to use it for additional use cases (such as lecture capture, faculty video production etc.) is cumbersome.

  4. Zoom: We have no intention to replace Zoom! However, we are using Panopto for long-term storage of Zoom cloud recordings. This reduces cost (Panopto offers unlimited storage; Zoom charges), and means that all of Dartmouth’s video content will be housed in one single system.

What are the pros and cons of the move to Panopto?

Primarily, this is a question of a bit of short-term pain for a lot of long-term gain. The advantages of moving to Panopto are substantial:

  • Consolidation and standardization. Many faculty, staff and students have been confused by the multiplicity of video tools available. Which one to use - TechSmith Relay? Kaltura? Something else? By standardizing on one tool, we are simplifying the situation, and will be able to support everyone better.

  • All your video in one place. Everyone will have one place to go to in order to access their video library - no matter where the video originated, including even your Zoom recordings.

  • Ease of use for managing and sharing via Canvas. Panopto integrates seamlessly with Canvas. This means that it is very easy for everyone to access all of their videos in Canvas, and to make them available in Canvas courses. This is much easier than, for example, finding links to Zoom recordings in Zoom, and then copying and pasting them into Canvas.

  • Enhancing Zoom at Dartmouth. Zoom has been widely and successfully adopted at Dartmouth. Its weakest link has always been Zoom’s recording management: Zoom storage is very expensive, and it’s not easy to integrate Zoom recordings elsewhere (e.g. Canvas). This is why we have not promoted Zoom as a screen-recording technology, even as many faculty have begun using it for just that. By moving Zoom recordings into Panopto automatically, we are effectively beefing up Zoom’s functionality. Using Zoom, a platform most everyone is comfortable with by now, to create screen captures is now a viable and intuitive option.

  • Significant cost savings. It’s no surprise that replacing several tools with one will create significant cost saving for Dartmouth, especially over time.

What is the timeline for all of these changes?

Here is a current estimate of our transition plans. We will update these dates as our timelines firm up.

  • As of now - Panopto can be used by anyone, to record, edit, deliver and manage media.

  • As of now - Panopto integration with Canvas completed

  • As of now - Zoom integration with Canvas completed

  • As of now - New Zoom Cloud recordings stored in Panopto

  • As of now: TechSmith Relay (Knowmia) recordings moved to Panopto. TechSmith Relay (Knowmia) no longer available for creation of new content.

  • As of now: New Panopto-compatible classroom capture hardware installed

  • Q1 2021 - Existing Zoom recordings moved to Panopto.

  • Q1 2021 - Echo 360 content moved to Panopto.

  • Q1 2021 - Kaltura recordings moved to Panopto. 

  • As of mid March 2021 - Kaltura no longer available for creation of new content

  • May 30, 2021 - TechSmith Relay (Knowmia) decommissioned

  • July 31, 2021 - Echo 360 decommissioned

Questions and feedback

If you have any questions, or would like to give us feedback on Panopto or on our migration plan, we would like to hear from you. You can contact us by e-mail at

Request Help with Panopto

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Article ID: 119865
Fri 11/6/20 1:09 PM
Thu 6/3/21 1:57 PM

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