Standardized Testing Headphones and Earbuds

Schools are gearing up for the next round of standardized tests and we are here to help!  Headphones, headsets and earbuds are often a necessity for these tests but can be overlooked.

We have something for every budget.  Buy disposables just for testing or invest in the long-term and restock the AV closet with durable choices from HamiltonBuhl, AVID Education, Califone, Thinkwrite and Soundnetic.

A selection classroom headphones to meet every need.

Bucket of Earbuds

Here is an easy way to offer disposable earbuds to your students, library patrons, gym users and more.  Put a bucket of earbuds on your counter.  Great for give-aways or sell them:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Part number: EB-90-Bucket

– Stereo earbuds 100 count is plastic bucket
– Rubber tips help block outside noise
– Angled earpieces for comfort fit
Individually packaged
– 4′-0″ cord length
– Small 1/8″ 3.5mm adapter works with computers, tablets, iPods and other media players

These disposable headphones work well in any number of uses:

– Classroom testing
– Spa headphones
– Hotel headphones
– Airline headsets
– Libraries

and more!

Of course the Free Shipping is a great option too.

AVID Fishbone can save your headphones

AVID Education recently launched the new Avid FISHBONE headset adapter designed to save your headphones and/or device when the cord gets pulled out incorrectly:

Avid FISHBONE

AVID Fishbone

From the manufacturer:

Pin Breakage Reduction
The Fishbone TRRS adapter is AVID’s response to the pin breakage problem experienced across the audio industry by companies of all sizes.
This flexible breakaway TRRS adapter helps prevent pin breakage inside expensive electronic devices when a
student pulls mistakenly yanks the cord when standing rapidly or when a device falls on the ground.
Inspired by the swimming motion of fish, the Fishbone bends in the middle across the ribs while rotating in the device’s jack.
This flex-and-bend reorients the Fishbone’s jack in the direction of the pulling force allowing the headphone pin to disengage
without causing damage.
Available in any color as long as it’s black, the Fishbone is part of AVID’s targeted approach to increasing time on
learning by reducing technology failure.

This product complies with applicable CPSIA and TPCH regulations.

LocknCharge – Affordable Charging Solutions for Schools

With many schools adopting 1:1 Chromebook or iPad programs for students, managing the charging, storage, security and transport of those devices has become a full-time job (and a headache for many school staff). The education market has been flooded with a wide array of charging options, but high prices, lack of mobility, security concerns and compatibility issues have turned into trial and error purchasing pitfalls. So, how do you know what type of charging unit you need to make an affordable, efficient purchasing decision?

Fortunately, LocknCharge offers solutions for schools to make device deployments faster and safer, so that teachers and IT administrators can focus on creating an engaging learning environment. LocknCharge is known education-focused designs at a more entry level price. Their charging stations offer easy to use, compatible and secure design that assure you only pay for what you need. Only add the features you need – from optional Baskets to lock down kits – you can customize units to best fit your deployment needs. Best of all, multi device charging stations are compatible with almost any device, accommodating the devices you have today and the devices you’ll have in the future.

Compatible. LocknCharge Carts and Baskets can accommodate almost any device such as laptops, tablets, iPads, Macbooks or Chromebooks up to a 15″ screen size – with or without cases in the divider storage system.

Carrier 30 Charging Cart

Carrier 10 Charging Station

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Efficient. LocknCharge Carriers, Carts and Stations can charge from 10 to 40 devices simultaneously, including Chromebooks, Macbooks, laptops and most tablets, with or without most cases. ECO Safe Charge can handle the power requirements of almost any device by staging the availability of power to each bank of devices and offers safe, efficient and future proofed power management for charging 40 devices at once.

Additionally, LocknCharge cable management has been simplified so that you can wire an entire Charging Station or Cart in minutes. The top-loading Cart design provides a unique side channel system that holds cables in place, while being easy to plug devices in. A separate compartment houses charging bricks to keep the device storage area neat.

Joey 30 Cart

Secure. Mounting kits, high quality welded steel, hardened steel padlock and heavy duty anchor kits protect your devices while they’re not in use. You can also easily switch your fleet of Carts from keyed different to keyed alike locks depending on your deployment needs. The Charging Station’s externally accessible power outlet means that you can charge your devices while they’re safely locked inside. Additionally, the device power packs are securely stored away beneath the curved steel sliding lid and can only be accessed when the Charging Station is open.

Portable. Carrier Carts with Baskets, wall and desk mount Stations with Baskets, and top loading Carts offer multiple access points that allow for quicker distribution of devices and assure that no one has to bend down to get devices off the bottom shelf. Easily wheel the LocknCharge portable charging Cart wherever devices are needed using 5″ rolling casters, or use LocknCharge Baskets to assure devices can be safely and quickly transported between multiple classrooms. Baskets enable students to assist in the distribution of devices, so teaching can happen faster.

Lifetime warranty. Schools can be tough on Charging Stations, so LocknCharge products are built to last. They’re so confident about their products that they offer a Lifetime Warranty — click here for full warranty details.

Carrier 40 Charging Cart

Affordable. So, how much does all of this efficiency, security and portability cost? You’ll be amazed. Options start as low as $489 for a desktop LocknCharge Charging Station, $674 for a wall or desk mount Charging Carrier, $924 for a Charging Cart, and $1309 for a combination Carrier Charging Cart. FREE Dock-to-Dock delivery for LocknCharge Carrier or Carrier Cart combo.

To learn more about the affordable, efficient LocknCharge charging solutions, simply contact us and we’ll be happy to answer all of your questions.

Top 10 Reasons to Use the Boardshare Interactive Whiteboard Camera System

With more features and little-to-no maintenance costs, the Boardshare Interactive Whiteboard Camera System is a great choice for portable smart board capability that enables interactivity and collaboration on any surface. Here are the Top 10 reasons to use Boardshare:

Boardshare BC8000

Boardshare BC8000

  1. You can turn your flat screen TV into an interactive whiteboard without using a projector. Simply connect the pocket-sized camera directly to a flat panel TV.
  2. You can use your broken, outdated interactive whiteboards again without replacing them. Utilize a projector with any flat wall/wipe board surface to turn your classroom or boardroom into a collaborative work space.
  3. You’ll save THOUSANDS of dollars by not replacing your outdated hardware. Dust off that expensive digital projector or flat panel TV to create an interactive whiteboard experience.
  4. You can move easily between locations without having to move the whiteboards. Boarshare’s pocket-sized camera is easy to setup and transport from room to room.
  5. You get a 30-day money back guarantee. Boardshare is confident that you’re gonna love their product, so they’re offering a money-back guarantee.
  6. Connect BoardShare to your projector and laptop to get an interactive experience on any flat surface. Boardshare is compatible with both Mac and Windows operating systems and replies on an innovative stylus pen to access an array of tools including virtual pens, erasers, highlighters, and colors.
  7. The BoardShare product does NOT require technical expertise to set up. Connects and sets up within minutes. Easy peesy!
  8. No need for another power outlet; Boardshare is powered by your laptop’s USB port. Phew, that’s one less plug to juggle in already overworked outlets.
  9. You never have to pay a licensing fee – WOW! Boardshare offers free software updates and no licensing fees, plus you can’t beat Boardshare’s price of $349.00.
  10. You get a FREE Wand and FREE Shipping with purchase of the Bluetooth model! Free wand is a limited time promotion (a $49 value!). Act now before quantities are gone.

Don’t believe us? Check out this video to see just how easy and amazing your interactive experience can be with Boardshare.

If you would like to learn more about the Boardshare Interactive Whiteboard Camera System, simply contact us and we’ll be happy to answer all of your questions.

NEW Web Site Offers Secure Shopping & Navigational Ease

Have you checked out the new and improved Encore Data Products web site? With so many data breaches in the news, we knew that customers needed reassurance that their online purchase was secure. We also knew that customers wanted to locate the products they need faster and easier. So, we made some changes to our web site to provide a safer, more intuitive and expedited online shopping experience.

Secure Shopping

We recently upgraded the Encoredataproducts.com online security using anti-viral software from McAfee SECURE to help customers stay safer when they click, download and buy online. The software protects the Encore web site from malware and malicious links, plus detects phishing attacks and other things that can harm customers and their computers. Our valid SSL certification ensures that the data customers send to the site is encrypted by industry-standard security protocols.

bannermcafee-logo

Additionally, The Encore Data Products website uses reCAPTCHA from Google, a service that protects the site from spam and abuse. Using an advanced risk analysis engine and adaptive CAPTCHA, it keeps automated software from engaging in abusive activities on your site. It does this while letting customers pass through with ease. Combined, McAfee SECURE and reCAPTCHA ensure that you have a secure online shopping experience, protect your personal data, and prevent viral attacks on your computer or device.

Navigational Ease

We realize that customers need to find the products they’re looking for quickly and easily. After reviewing our web site analytics and talking with our customers, we decided it was time to make some major changes to our retail web site. Those changes included designing a clean, simplified layout; regrouping product categories; developing a top menu with scroll-over sub-categories; creating one-click access to our most popular brands and products; offering “Products You May Like” suggestions; and providing TrustPilot service ratings and reviews.

screenshot-54

The new and improved Encore Data Products web site has already received rave reviews from customers. “It’s easier than ever to find the headphones I want and know that my purchase is secure,” said Kelly James, a K-8 technology teacher. We hope you’ll agree that we’re making online shopping for technology accessories quick, convenient and secure.

Looking for something on our web site, but can’t find it? We’ve got new products arriving and other products leaving every week. Contact us if you need help finding a particular product – our great team of Customer Service representatives is here to help.

How to Choose Gaming Headsets for Minecraft’s Education Edition

With the full version of Minecraft: Education Edition due for release in early November, classroom gaming headsets are in high demand. How do you decide which gaming headset to purchase? Fortunately, there some great “convertible” options designed for classroom use when gaming programs are being utilized and even when they’re not.

Gaming Headset Options

Why are gaming headsets more costly? Most gaming headsets include detachable inline gaming controls, premium surround sound, separate game and audio chat, and cushioned ear cups that diminish external distractions. USB plugs are standard for gaming headsets and increase the price per unit for inclusion of the complex USB wiring technology. Some headsets offer multiple plugs for connection to a wider range of PC’s, laptops, tablets and devices.

AVID CD-858MF

AVID CD-858MF

Califone GH507

Califone GH507

 

 

 

 

 

The AVID Education CD-858MF even offers vibration, flashing lights and enhanced sound for an immersive 3D experience. Califone offers both a deluxe (Califone GH507) and lighter weight (Califone GH131) edition of their gaming headsets. There’s even a gaming headset specifically designed for collaborative gaming on XBox One and XBox 360 called GameRush by HamiltonBuhl. All can be used for educational gaming and regular classroom use (e.g., language learning software, listening labs, video editing and testing).

Califone GH131

Califone GH131

HamiltonBuhl GameRush

HamiltonBuhl GameRush

New Minecraft Features

Utilizing gaming headsets that are specifically designed for classroom use will maximize the options and features offered in the new Minecraft: Education Edition. Some of these new features include:

  • Classroom Mode will allow educators to manage world settings, communicate with students, give items to students and teleport them in the Minecraft world. It displays a map view of the Minecraft world, a list of all the students in the world, a set of world management settings and a chat window. There is even a Minecraft clock to show time of day in the world. Classroom Mode offers educators the ability to interact with students and manage settings from a central user interface.
  • The Education Edition will also include leads and horses, additional player skins, pistons and the remainder of Redstone functionality, plus an updated user interface.

Lesson plans, starter worlds and tutorials are accessible at education.minecraft.net, as is the Minecraft Mentors program, a community for educators who use Minecraft.

If your school site or classroom is considering adopting the new Minecraft: Education Edition for game-based learning, make sure to research gaming headset options that are designed for classroom use, maximize your investment, and offer multi-purpose utilization. To learn more about gaming headsets for the classroom, simply contact us and we’ll be happy to answer all of your questions.

Digital Jukebox Offers One-Touch Entertainment for Young and Old

What if there was a digital jukebox that enabled young children and elderly adults to listen to their favorite music with the touch of a single button? Well, there is! HamiltonBuhl has created an amazing, portable, digital jukebox that lets you listen to your favorite tunes, at the touch of a button, as often as you want! The HamiltonBuhl Juke 24 allows you to load 48 hours of any music or audio from CD, computer, smartphone, laptop or flash drive. You can even read and record songs, poems or books to listen to, anytime.

For Young and Old

For younger children, you can load up their favorite tunes. Encourage them to read and record their favorite books. Put them in control of pushing buttons. They can even sing-along using a karaoke feature which lets kids record their performances. For elderly adults, load up songs from yesteryear or the latest books-on-tape. It’s easily used by both young and old, with no computer programming skills required.

Digital Jukebox

HamiltonBuhl Juke24

“Early learners need repetition, and constantly ask to hear a song, a book or a soundtrack again and again. Juke24™ makes it easy to foster learning through repetition. Beyond that, it safely puts kids in control of their favorites for hours and hours,” says Shelly Goldstein, President of HamiltonBuhl.

Easy Upload & Customization

Easily upload content to as many of the 24 buttons as you like, then create and insert button artwork for easy recall. From cartoon characters to superheroes, or Sinatra to the Beatles, any button artwork can be created. Customized buttons encourage memory and association skills. With a whopping 48 hours of play time, kids and adults can easily control their own listening experience with this media player.

HamiltonBuhl even created a free iPhone app to make creating button artwork fun and quick! Built tough to withstand the rigors of daily use, Juke24 comes with built-in 4 GB of memory, a built-in MP3 digital recorder, and has a back-loading CD player. It also includes a karaoke function with talkover mic, built-in speakers, digital display and translucent button covers.

To learn more about the Juke24 or other portable boom boxes with recorders, simply contact us and we’ll be happy to answer all of your questions.

Inc. Magazine Ranks Encore Data Products on Inc. 5000 List

NEW YORK, August 2016Inc. Magazine ranked Encore Data Products number 2546 on its 35th annual Inc. 5000 List, the most prestigious ranking of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies. The list represents a unique look at the most successful companies within the American economy’s most dynamic segment— its independent small businesses. Companies such as Microsoft, Dell, Domino’s Pizza, Pandora, Timberland, LinkedIn, Yelp, Zillow, and many other well-known names gained their first national exposure as honorees of the Inc. 5000.

We’re honored to be ranked on the 2016 Inc. 5000 List. It’s a testament to the great customer service, responsive customer base and dedicated team that Encore strives to maintain and improve every day,” says Jeff Burgess, President and CEO of Encore Data Products.

5000_color stacked

The 2016 Inc. 5000, unveiled online at Inc.com and with the top 500 companies featured in the September issue of Inc. (available on newsstands August 23) is the most competitive crop in the list’s history. The average company on the list achieved a mind-boggling three-year growth of 433%. The Inc. 5000’s aggregate revenue is $200 billion, and the companies on the list collectively generated 640,000 jobs over the past three years, or about 8% of all jobs created in the entire economy during that period. Complete results of the Inc. 5000, including company profiles and an interactive database that can be sorted by industry, region, and other criteria, can be found at www.inc.com/inc5000.

“The Inc. 5000 list stands out where it really counts,” says Inc. President and Editor-In-Chief Eric Schurenberg. “It honors real achievement by a founder or a team of them. No one makes the Inc. 5000 without building something great – usually from scratch. That’s one of the hardest things to do in business, as every company founder knows. But without it, free enterprise fails.”

The annual Inc. 5000 event honoring all the companies on the list will be held from October 18 through 20, in San Antonio, TX. Speakers include some of the greatest entrepreneurs of this and past generations, such as best-selling author and strategist Tony Robbins, SoulCycle co-founders Elizabeth Cutler and Julie Rice, Cornerstone OnDemand founder, president and CEO Adam Miller, Marvell Technology Group director and co-founder Weili Dai, and New Belgium Brewing co-founder and executive chair Kim Jordan.

For more information about Encore Data Products, Inc., its products and promotions please visit https://www.encoredataproducts.com/.

About Encore Data Products

Encore Data Products is a privately held company based in Louisville, Colorado. We supply the education, health and fitness, hospitality, business and government industries with high quality audio visual equipment and technology accessories. With an ever-expanding product selection from top brands, free shipping options, competitive pricing and easy ordering, Encore Data Products enables its clients to maximize their investment in equipment needed to enrich their learning, health and business environments. For more information on Encore Data Products services and products, please visit us online at https://www.encoredataproducts.com/.

About Inc. and the Inc. 500|5000

Methodology

The 2016 Inc. 5000 is ranked according to percentage revenue growth when comparing 2012 to 2015. To qualify, companies must have been founded and generating revenue by March 31, 2012. They had to be U.S.-based, privately held, for profit, and independent—not subsidiaries or divisions of other companies—as of December 31, 2015. (Since then, a number of companies on the list have gone public or been acquired.) The minimum revenue required for 2012 is $100,000; the minimum for 2015 is $2 million. As always, Inc. reserves the right to decline applicants for subjective reasons. Companies on the Inc. 500 are featured in Inc.’s September issue. They represent the top tier of the Inc. 5000, which can be found at https://www.inc.com/inc5000.

About Inc. Media:

Founded in 1979 and acquired in 2005 by Mansueto Ventures, Inc. is the only major brand dedicated exclusively to owners and managers of growing private companies, with the aim to deliver real solutions for today’s innovative company builders. Winner of the National Magazine Award for General Excellence in both 2014 and 2012. Total monthly audience reach for the brand has grown significantly from 2,000,000 in 2010 to over 15,000,000 today.  For more information, visit www.inc.com.

The Inc. 5000 is a list of the fastest-growing private companies in the nation. Started in 1982, this prestigious list of the nation’s most successful private companies has become the hallmark of entrepreneurial success. The Inc. 5000 Conference & Awards Ceremony is an annual event that celebrates their remarkable achievements. The event also offers informative workshops, celebrated keynote speakers, and evening functions.

For more information on Inc. and the Inc. 5000 Conference, visit https://conference.inc.com/.

 

Determining Classroom Headphone Requirements

With so many headphone options in the marketplace, it’s hard to know which headphone will meet your classroom needs. Familiarize yourself with headphone components and options before spending money on something you may not need. Here’s a quick reference guide to determining your classroom headphone requirements.

Age Group, Frequency of Use & Budget
Age group, frequency of use and budget are three major factors to consider when determining what type of headphones you will need. These will make the difference between selecting between high-tech, durable models or simpler, disposable models.

Age Group
Younger children may benefit from headphones that have a limited volume threshold, nearly indestructible construction, fewer buttons, stronger cords, and fit smaller heads. Many larger, over-ear headphones are simply too big and bulky for smaller kids. Whereas, lighter weight headphones or those with a lot of buttons or knobs may easily break in the hands of younger children. One size does NOT fit all. Consider purchasing different headphones for different age groups, or buy a lighter weight, adjustable headphone to span age groups.

Frequency of Use
Any school with daily 1:1 device programs, technology labs, resource centers, or online curriculum programs should consider the daily impact on headphones. No headphone is indestructible. Daily handling, wear and tear, and sanitizing across a large volume of students requires more durable headphones. If only a subset of your students will be utilizing headphones on a monthly, quarterly or annual basis, you can choose between simpler, budget-friendly headphones with a shorter shelf life.

Budget
Large school sites that require headphones for one time annual testing might appreciate inexpensive disposable headphones or earbuds. Disposable headphones are often sold in bulk, which provides great price breaks. Alternatively, if you’ve invested in language learning programs, game-based learning, video presentation or online curriculum, then a quality, more expensive headset with may be required.

Plugging In
Before purchasing any school headphones, make sure you know what type of plug your technology requires. If you are unsure, most technology comes with an adapter that allows you to convert your plug.

Tablets, Laptops, Computers and Smartphones
A 3.5mm plug (sometimes referred to as 1/8”) is standard for most tablets, laptops, computers and smartphone devices. Many headphone manufacturers have moved to a narrow barrel design, which allows plugs to easily fit within the confines of bulky tablet cases. Dual-, Tri- and TRRS-plugs are also available to expand device compatibility. Some headphones come with a USB plug, which connects directly to your computer. The popularity of USB compatibility has surged in recent years, but it comes at a price – USB headphones cost an extra $10+ per unit due to expensive, built-in sound-card functionality.

Jack Boxes, Cassette Players, Record Players & Musical Keyboards
The ¼” plug is standard for a lot of older audio technology, such as listening centers (with jack boxes), cassette players, record players and musical keyboards. If you’re planning to upgrade your audio technology, consider what type of plug you’ll need to use in the future.

Not plugging in?
If you’re hoping to create a wireless school environment, headphones with wireless or Bluetooth options may be your best bet. When considering wireless or Bluetooth headphones, think about impacting factors like interference, connectivity and group syncing. Troubleshoot wireless connectivity at your school site prior to making a large investment. If you’re not confident in wireless or Bluetooth options providing a secure, quality connection, then stick with wired headphones until site conditions improve.

To Speak or Not to Speak
Without Microphone
For some classrooms, just being able to provide listening tools for individual listening is important. Classrooms, libraries, and audio labs frequently need listening tools for individuals, allowing for privacy or working at a listener’s own pace. You’re also more likely to find a variety of budget-friendly, disposable headphones without a microphone, so don’t pay for a microphone if you don’t need it.

With Microphone
Headsets are an essential tool for those who frequently communicate or record audio and need a quality microphone. Classrooms or testing centers might require recordings for exams or assignments from individuals, which makes headsets a more viable option than relying on a computer microphone. With a headset microphone placed in front of a speaker’s mouth, the recorded audio will be clearer than some standard built-in microphones on various devices.

 In-Ear, On-Ear or Over-Ear?
When considering over-ear, on-ear, or in-ear headphone models, consider listening time and environment. Each style has its own advantages, especially when you consider noise cancellation, portability and comfort. However, all designs (depending on the quality of the headphones) have the ability to isolate noise and allow for an immersive listening experience.

In-Ear
Not everyone will find in-ear earbuds comfortable since they sit in the ear canal, but earbuds have become a hugely popular option for students. Disposable earbuds are budget friendly and provide a great hygiene option for single-use, annual testing with large populations. When considering earbuds for younger students, rubber tipped earbuds may offer a more comfortable fit for smaller ear canals.

On Ear
On-ear headphones offer a nice combination of noise isolation, comfort and background listening for instruction integrated environments. Students often need to hear teacher or administrator instructions while listening to curriculum programs, testing sessions or technology labs. On-ear headphones deliver a quality sound experience while enabling critical instructions to be heard.

sc7vfeatureOver Ear
Over-ear headphones have ear cups that fit over the ear. They tend to be better at naturally blocking out sounds from the outside environment, which could be a selling point for exams or busy settings. However, when worn over time, over-ear headphones can feel heavy, sweaty and uncomfortable, which can make students less intent to remain focused.

Mono Vs. Stereo
Mono Headphones
Mono Headphones are typically used with older audio technology such as listening centers, cassette players and recorders, and record players.

Stereo Headphones
Stereo Headphones should be used with newer audio technology such as tablets, laptops, computers, CD players, TV’s or anything with a stereo output.

Switchable Headphones
Switchable Headphones eliminate any compatibility issues by providing the option of switching from mono to stereo sounds. If you are unsure of which output your technology source has, switchable headphones would be your best choice because they can switch from mono to stereo or vice versa.

Volume Control
Understanding the need for volume control can help you determine whether or not it’s an appropriate addition to your headphones. Built-in volume control makes it easier to hear important sounds, enables fast adjustments, helps prevent damage to your hearing, and allows you to mute your headphones quickly. Being able to adjust the volume on your headphones can be the difference between missing a vital portion of the program or your teacher’s instructions and hearing exactly what you need to hear.

Cord Conundrums
Depending on your environment, the age of your users and your listening source, you will want to choose the best cord for your classroom headphone. Consider the following when making a decision based on the style of cord you need.

Cord Length
Headphone cord lengths have become largely standardized, but still remain a topic of debate. Consider student age, mobility needs, and device mobility when determining ideal cord length. If students are expected to remain seated at a computer station, then a shorter cord length may work. If multiple students are plugging into a single listening station or jack box, then longer cords might provide needed flexibility.

Cord Type
Straight cords are preferred for older children or adults because they provide increased mobility. Coiled cords are more flexible, prevent tangling, and are preferred for younger children due to their thickness, durability and reduced choking hazard. Several headphone manufacturers have developed nylon-braided cords to prevent cord tangling, knotting and splitting. These nylon-braided cords are sometimes coated in PVC to reduce chewing damage and allow cords to be wiped down for safe hygiene.

Overall, by determining what your classroom headphones will need to accomplish, who will use them and how often, finding the right pair should be easier. For any help or advice, contact us–our team can help you find the right pair of headphones for your education setting.