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Study With Steph

Managing Editor Steph Beckett is back with another season of Study With Steph! Join her as she takes on the CTS exam again with the help of some industry experts. Each episode will cover a particular topic, and she will share the best study methods and prep tools to ensure you both ace the exam. Come Study With Steph!

Study With Steph — Lesson 18: Are You There, AV Math Gods? It’s Me, Stephanie

January 12, 2023

It’s time for the episode that you’ve all been requesting … AV Math! And because this requires a lot of writing and graphics, I’ve included all of those below. So do feel free to give this episode a watch, and let me know if you have any questions or want to work through anything together […]

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Study With Steph — Lesson 17: What You Should Know About Getting Your CTS in 2022

December 12, 2022

One thing about Luke Jordan? He gives great advice. Whether you’re studying to get your CTS for the second time like me or it’s your first time studying, he’s been there. So enjoy this episode as I pick his brain about what I should spend time doing the second time around and about some best […]

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Study With Steph — Lesson 16: New Study Group Just Dropped!

October 17, 2022

This isn’t an overexaggeration when I say that so many of you have been asking about extra study materials other than simply watching/listening to this podcast. I feel you! I’ve had a hard time navigating everything that’s available while also trying to figure out what CTS study methods work best for me. So, you’re going […]

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Study With Steph — Episode 15: Lessons Learned From Failing the CTS Test

October 3, 2022

She’s baaaaaaack! By “she” I mean me and by “back” I mean ready to study and take the CTS test (again)! That’s right people; I failed on my first try. But I’ve taken some time, collected my thoughts and in season two, I’m making sure to study the right things, build a test-taking strategy and […]

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Study With Steph — Lesson 14: A Site for Sore Eyes

October 11, 2021

In today’s Study With Steph episode, Jay Rogina from Spinitar jumps on a call with me because we are talking about site surveys! If you consider yourself a good integrator, you’ll know the importance of a job site evaluation and what can go wrong if the evaluation is done the wrong way. Jay walks me […]

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Study With Steph — Lesson 13: The Customer Is Always Right

September 24, 2021

Let’s talk about gathering customer information. It’s an important part of specifying any room — you have to know what the customer needs. Of course, gathering info requires a certain level of communication. What are the best ways to communicate with a customer or client? What questions do you ask to properly find out what the customer […]

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Study With Steph — Lesson 12: Radio Ga Ga

September 14, 2021

In the latest episode of Study With Steph, I invite Pete Putman (just in time apparently since he announced his retirement the week after we recorded) to chat with me about wireless radio systems. As you may have learned from Gary Kayye’s Rants & rAVes episode, Pete has had a long and fruitful career in the AV industry, […]

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Study With Steph — Lesson 11: Ohm My God

August 10, 2021

*Lizzo voice*: Y’all been waiting for this one! Every time I’ve asked someone for study tips for the CTS test, the first thing I’ve heard is “learn Ohm’s law.” So, being the physics-averted person I am, I avoided it like the plague for as long as possible. But I’m back. I’m ready to learn. Jim Maltese from Level […]

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Study With Steph — Lesson 10: Control Freak

June 8, 2021

Control systems — they’re such a mystery to me. What are they about? What can they do? What do they want? Steve Greenblatt of Control Concepts, Inc. sits down with me to discuss just that. So — if you need help studying: commands versus functions, how a CPU communicates, types of control systems, etc. this is […]

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Study With Steph — Lesson 9: Mixed Signals

May 18, 2021

It’s time to talk about the way we connect. No, not with one another. I’m talking cables and the things at each end you use to plug them into stuff. If you’ve ever wondered what a Phoenix connector is, why wires and cables are NOT interchangeable terms and why building an AV rack the proper […]

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Study With Steph — Lesson 8: Networks (Not the Social Kind)

March 30, 2021

In today’s episode of Study With Steph, I catch up with my pal, Justin Kennington, to help me with networks. We answer the following questions: What is a network? Why does topology matter? What the heck is up with Ethernet (I previously thought it was just a cable. It is not just a cable.) For clarification […]

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Study With Steph — Lesson 7: Video Killed the Radio Star

March 23, 2021

I took a few weeks to rearrange my episode structure, and now I am back here with all of you — and I am ready to learn! If you’re still following the CTS Exam Guide, I’m so sorry that the chapters no longer match the episode numbers. I will let you know we are still on […]

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Study With Steph — Lesson 6: Blinding Lights

February 17, 2021

Now that I have some extra time to study for the CTS exam, I decided to take my time with this next section. Instead of hopping right into understanding video systems, I invited Sony Electronics Professional’s Chrissy Sara to discuss some concepts of light with me. As it happens, light works similarly to sound! Chrissy […]

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Study With Steph — Episode 5: The InfoComm Announcement

February 9, 2021

In case you live under a rock and didn’t know, AVIXA has postponed InfoComm 2021 to Oct. 27-29. This news was a big sigh of relief for many in our industry because there is no way that Integrated Systems Europe and InfoComm in the same month was going to be easy for anyone. This week […]

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Study With Steph — Lesson 4: Hear Ye, Hear Ye

January 26, 2021

This week, it’s the subject many of you have been dreading: audio. I (very stupidly) thought this would be one of my best subjects — and I now know how much physics goes into understanding sound. I invited AVIXA’s Chuck Espinoza on with me this week to talk about sound propagation, acoustics and more — […]

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Study With Steph — Lesson 3: The Analog vs. Digital Episode

January 19, 2021

Hello #AVtweeps, this week’s podcast is a support group for any of you who have ever had trouble understanding the difference between analog and digital signals. Or, alternatively, if you understand the difference by concept but not by much of anything else. Tom Kehr, systems designer and trainer at Almo Pro A/V, was kind and […]

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Study With Steph — Lesson 2: CTS Exam Logistics

January 12, 2021

Welcome to episode 2 of Study With Steph! This one goes out to all my homies who have decided they want to take the CTS exam — but then get confused about what to expect of the test and what is expected of you. In this episode, I met up with two of AVIXA’s be […]

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Study With Steph — Lesson 1: Welcome to Study With Steph

January 5, 2021

Hey everybody! Welcome to the very first episode of Study With Steph. In case you haven’t heard, I am on a mission to become a Certified Technology Specialist. Word on the street is — it’s no easy feat. But that’s what I’m here for! I am taking a look at a test subject per episode […]

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Rants and rAVes — Episode 1026: Study With Steph to Get Your CTS!

December 15, 2020

rAVe’s own Steph Beckett joined Gary on his latest videocast to talk about an all-new podcast logically titled: Study With Steph. Steph’s been in AV for a few years now, and Gary challenged her to get her AVIXA CTS certification. Well, challenge accepted. But, since Steph never does anything alone, she’s taking you along on her CTS journey — so any and all AV’ers (who want […]

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