Poll: Which Smartboard and Why?

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General Chat Thread, Which IWB and Projector and Why? in General; Which IWB and Projector and Why? I need a value for money answer to this one buying a package of ...
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    tosca925's Avatar
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    Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    I need a value for money answer to this one buying a package of IWB and Projector.

    ie; i like the Promethean One butit is expensive, what sht e est in your opinion

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    FN-GM's Avatar
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    Re: Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    Im not to keen on smart boards my self, the ones were you have a built in projector the quality is rubbish. The stupid things decide to go in a deep sleep mode for half an hour as soon as you need them. With the smart board you can use your fingers with it so everytime a kid walks past they draw all over it.

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Re: Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    > Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    We've just had a new Epson EMP-X3 projector installed by Advanced Connections. They're £600 each if bought stand-alone. No point in buying a low-end projector for classroom use, it won't be bright enough to be seen.

    For IWB, use a standard whiteboard plus a Mimio or eBeam (go for the wired USB option, not the wireless as it uses the same bandwidth as 802.11b and will intefere with your wireless network). These days just as good as a whiteboard unless you need to scribble /really/ fast.

    In all cases, ditch the software that comes with whatever IWB solution you use and use PowerPoint, Impress or similar. Don't get trapped into creating lesson content in some random company's propriatory IWB format (okay, same technically applies to PowerPoint, but at least it's a widly-available propriatory format).

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    Re: Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    Surely the fact that you can use your finger is an advantage? You can lose the Promethean pens and have to pay for a new set, but you can't lose your finger (well, obviously you can, but if you do, you have bigger problems on your mind than using your IWB!). How often do you have kids unsupervised walking past the boards anyway? Plus if all the pens are in the tray at the time they walk past, all they will do is move the mouse, not draw anything.

    We've got some of the built-in projector Smart Boards and some of the ceiling-mounted ones; to be honest, I've not noticed any quality problems with the all-in-ones.

    The new height-adjustable all-in-ones are cool, too, especially in a Primary environment although I'm not sure if we'd bother with them in the Senior - they would still be useful though, so that the board can be used by 6' teachers and 4' Year 7s alike.

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    Re: Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    I have a number of GTCO Calcomp Schoolboards (these are what RM re-brand as the Classboard). I think that they look really nice and the build quality is excellent.

    Drivers are availble for Windows, Mac and Linux and the software you get isn't too bad either. Price is quite good at approx £800-£900 depending upon size.

    I have been pairing these with BenQ projectors which seem to do the job well at £360 each and only £180 for a new lamp.

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    enjay's Avatar
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    Re: Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    Smart's software is good too, actually. You can put it on all your computers and staff and students can have copies at home, too, which makes for easier lesson preparation.

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    Re: Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    Think it entirely depends on the environment. If the teachers are abel to look after their classes and manage a class then SmartBoards are excellent. If damage is a high probability then Promethean. If teachers are prone to losing things then reconsider back to Smart.

    You makes your choice and then carry on.

    No idea about Hitachi though.

    @FN: That is normally a simple setting in the projector menu. We have Our projectors set to sleep after half hour of no signal as otherwise staff leave them on all night. Also Not seen the all in one boards but everyother board we have had has been of a high build quality & the only problem we had has been with PC's not supplying enough USB power

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    Ric_'s Avatar
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    Re: Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    I know that some people swear by the Promethean software but I think that they all seem to be a bit of a muchness.

    The GTCO boards are definately up to the same build quality as the Promethean boards and are considerably cheaper.

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    Re: Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    > Smart's software is good too, actually. You can put it on all your
    > computers and staff and students can have copies at home, too, which
    > makes for easier lesson preparation.

    But this locks you into buying Smart hardware for evermore. All your lesson content is in Smart's propriatory format, and their license specifically blocks you from using their software with any other IWB. Sure, the software /is/ good, and the licencse otherwise generous, but I'd still prefer to be able to pick-and-choose IWB suppliers at whim.

    --
    David Hicks

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    Re: Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    Does Promethean not come with a similar anti-competitor clause?

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    Re: Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    The Smart and Promethean software can import each others formats.

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    Re: Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    > Does Promethean not come with a similar anti-competitor clause?

    Oh yes, absolutly - all the IWB hardware I've seen comes with software that you can use pretty much everywhere /except/ on competitor's hardware. Definatly worth sticking with third-party software of some kind.

    --
    David Hicks

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    Re: Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    Smart all the way. We have one promethean and it does seem good (I've not used it enough to pass judgement on it), but some of our staff are actually using the smarts properly (!) and they love it.

    Hitachi -- no way in hell. These things are quite unreliable and we're forever getting support calls because 'they dont work' when the pen is OUT OF BATTERY!!! (ewww), plus the software is leagues behind that of Smart.

    The fact that you don't NEED pens on a smartboard is a huuuuuge plus. If kids are not being supervised with a live board then thats the problem of whoever isn't supervising them.

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    tosca925's Avatar
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    Re: Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    Think it entirely depends on the environment. If the teachers are abel to look after their classes and manage a class then SmartBoards are excellent. If damage is a high probability then Promethean

    What do you mean by damage?

    Examples?

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    Re: Which IWB and Projector and Why?

    Im personally a big fan of Epson Projectors and Smart Boards, the aim of an interactive whiteboard is to Interact, and my view on that is touchy feely is interacting with it, Prometheans you have to use the god forsaken pen to interact with them which I don't agree with, plus its easily lost, nib wears out very quickly with a lot of staff as they are constantly pressing very hard as they are used to doing on dry wipe boards to stop pen slippage etc. So if i'm asked its Epson and Smart, but unfortunalty for my place its Promethean all the way

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