How to Choose a Visualiser or Document Camera for Your School

Take a look at these tips on choosing a visualiser or document camera for your school.

We delve into all things #EdTech and what technology you should consider having in your classroom and what effect it will play and have in your digital framework.  Busy teachers are always seeking to make lessons more collaborative, fun and interactive.  For this blog, we’re deep diving into visualisers.

Visualiser, document camera, visual presenter or simply presenter – this small piece of equipment has many names.  But what is it and what does it do?  Well, it’s a digital ICT and AV presentation resource that can be connected to a PC, an interactive panel, such as the Promethean ActivPanel, an interactive whiteboard or with an LCD screen.

It’s an invaluable teaching aid and tool; it fits seamlessly into all educational environments from primary schools, secondary schools, training boards, colleges, learning centres, universities and more.  It’s a lightweight Full HD desktop camera with the capacity to display large printed pages, 3D objects, experiments and even living things in close up.  It’s ideal for workgroups and for larger audiences in a classroom setting.

In the EPSON range of visualisers there are four models:

  1. The ELPDC07
  2. The ELPDC11
  3. The ELPDC13
  4. The ELPDC21

As they scale up, the technology becomes more sophisticated and this is reflected in the price. So let’s look a little closer (excuse the pun!) at what sets all of them apart and what you should be considering for your learning environment.

Resolution:

The point of a visualiser is to enhance, magnify and zoom in on small data, images or 2D/3D objects.  The image needs to be clear and crisp when projected on a screen or interactive whiteboard, so pixels are important.  You are looking for a high number of pixels.  EPSON visualisers have 5-megapixel cameras.

Coverage:

Different visualisers cover different work areas. They range from A4 to A3, so you need to have an idea of what size of image you are looking to create and expand to.  On some models, the microscope attachment ensures that minute objects are seen on the screen, making them ideal for science lessons. With up to 10x digital zoom, one-touch focus and freeze function, you will be able to capture every detail.

Frame Rate:

This is down to how many images are taken per second. You don’t want a lag and you want crystal clear images in real time, so you need to have a powerful little engine within your visualiser or document camera that is supporting your teaching and training efforts.  You are seeking a skip-free flow for your video and a high frame rate will give you this result.  EPSON visualisers boast 30 frames per second.

Recording:

The EPSON visualisers possess an image and video capturing function.  Presenters, teachers, trainers can record their lessons and student progress.  Nifty!

 

Internal Memory:

And linked with recording is a visualiser or document camera with a good in-built memory for storing images and videos. Live images and video content can be stored on an SD card and can be output to multiple displays thanks to the parallel video output.

Arm:

The arm is the support that retains the camera and holds it above the object or page in question. Flexible and inflexible arms are available. All of the EPSON visualisers have flexible arms, making them super portable and easily transportable from one classroom to the next.  The flexible arms also mean that the presenter or teacher can adjust the distance between the camera and the object, to ensure the best quality projection. The visualisers come in a handy case for protection too and a nice little storage unit for all the cables.

Highline Office Technology is an accredited EPSON and Promethean Education specialist.  We are experts in the sales, maintenance and installation of Promethean ActivPanels and all EPSON projectors, visualisers, printers and multi-functional devices.

For a demo on any equipment, contact us at [email protected] or call 01 4097034 to arrange.

www.highlineofficetechnology.ie