Category Archives: Charging Station

3 Steps to a Better University Library

Although students these days often have digital resources at their fingertips thanks to personal computers and a WiFi connection, university libraries will always be important institutions that support faculty, staff, and students year-round. For one, university libraries serve multiple purposes and have transformed into more than just a book repository. Many libraries include computer stations, tech help centers, learning labs, classrooms, archives, and even cafes. Overall, they are not just academic centers, but also social meeting points for the university population.

Given a library’s activities, it’s important to make sure that it can serve all its patrons. Here are 3 ways to improve your library’s performance and turn it into a comfortable learning and teaching environment.

  1. Anticipate student tech needs. 

A library usually serves as a key place where students feel like they can get work done efficiently. To be immediately effective, libraries should provide not just resources but tech tools that can help every student achieve their goals. And because students can forget items after traveling a long way to get to the campus library, it’s helpful for the institution to keep key tools and devices available for checking out.

Besides having dedicated in-house devices, libraries can provide charging cables for Macbooks, wholesale headphones for personal or library computer use, and even projectors, DVD players, and other devices for special projects. Extension cords or power strips can also be helpful, especially if various some rooms in your facility have few outlets or if students congregate to work in certain high-traffic areas.

Dedicated charging stations can also be a great tool for students who need to charge their own mobile devices. The Hamilton 10 Port USB charging station makes a great addition to a library floor where students can charge various types of devices in a safe way.

  1. Provide sensory control over spaces.

Though libraries are filled with all types of exciting technology and workspaces, libraries are still places for focused study and quiet research. With all these added applications, it can be hard to make sure the sound levels are controlled at every given moment. To create a balance between noisy and quiet areas, many libraries have structured collaborative areas for students to work in, such as soundproof study and collaborative rooms or designated floors for quiet areas.

Allowing for a mix of the two can serve the needs of every student, professor, or staff member that needs or provides help. Many students benefit from working near others and receiving support from both busier and quieter environments, so it is important for libraries to provide these noise-controlled areas.

  1. Work in a mix of adjustable and flexible furniture.

A library is essentially an office workplace, and to give people the motivation and comfort to work efficiently is an important element to creating a comfortable environment. Fitting your university with dual-purpose furniture, storage, and adjustable seating can help all students and faculty work productively.

Key pieces to include are adjustable sitting and standing desks that will allow students to move into a more comfortable posture after sitting or standing for too long. In addition, providing a range of seating arrangements–such as couches, tables and chairs, cushioned seats with built-in desks, and bean bags–can help provide a flexibility that is conducive to collaborative work and a more relaxed environment. Even mobile blackboards can be a great tool for library spaces because it gives students and teachers an ability to demonstrate, share, or practice various tasks and lessons.

Overall, a university library should not be overlooked when it comes to maintaining a productive and social campus environment. To learn more about how we can help you improve your library’s offerings, contact us.

Review: Custom Educational Furnishings CEF LC-1-30 30 Tablet Security Charging Cart

Finding the right charging cart can be an endeavor for any tech department, especially when computers and tablets need to be transported safely, locked up securely, and serve many devices at once. Whether it’s for a hospital or a classroom, the right charging security cart should not be overlooked, especially as you expect a lot of travel and use from it. The new Custom Educational Furnishings CEF LC-1-30 30-Tablet Security Charging Cart is the answer for many challenges that a school, office, or business might face when storing a number of tablets securely.

The CEF LC-1-30 first of all is a compacted cart, with its size measuring 27″W x 30″D x 40″H. At this height, the cart can double as an instructor’s station, which allows the cart to be a multi-use piece of furniture for any space.  With the cable grommet on top, instructors can use the top of car for any device that also needs charging at the same time. With the two front and back locking doors, the devices inside can stay completely secure, without any risk of a break in.

The capacity of the cart includes 30 slots divided with PVC slot dividers, and can hold devices up to 16 inches in length, 11.5 inches tall and 1.375 inches thick. The space alloted for each slot can hold most tablets on the market (such as iPads and iPad minis), and even slim notebooks like Macbook Air and Google Chromebook. In addition, each numbered slot includes a cord keeper above it, allowing for easy cord management for every device in storage.

The back of the cart features even more easy-access cord management, with easy to use surge protected outlets, handle and cord wraps for tidying up cables, and optional AC adaptor brick storage trays for devices that use brick power supply. There is also extra storage space to allow for a mounted WAP, and other materials needed for the demanding classroom or office cart.

The cabinet’s durable construction is made with double faced Melamine laminate covering the 3/4″ and 1-1/8″ – 45-48 lb. industrial grade core. And unlike other carts, the CEF LC-1-30 provides 4 different finishes, allowing you to seamlessly integrate the cart with your current classroom or office, without it standing out against other furniture pieces. The four finishes include: grey nebula, natural oak, grey tenino, and cherry. The top and bottom of the cart is done in a black finish and with radius corners for safety and aesthetics, blending the entire look of the cart into a piece that is modern, functional, and consistent. The cart comes with four 5-inch soft balloon wheel casters that swivel and lock, while allows the cart to glide smoothly on all types of surfaces without damaging stored devices, and can stay mobile and stationary at a moment’s notice. Overall, it is a strong assembly that can withstand all types of environments, from a busy classroom with moving students, or quick and constant mobility up and down hospital floors.

Assembled by hand and made in the U.S., this cart can also be fitted with an optional 7 day programmable timer that can be programmed with different charging options, and wide spaced outlets that will allow wider plug heads to be plugged in at once and altogether. In addition, the cart comes with a 10 year warranty, a limited lifetime warranty on the surge protector, and a year warranty on the optional programmable timer. Overall, with its standard and custom options, the CEF LC-1-30 security charging cart can be a great asset to schools, hospitals, offices, libraries, and more. To order your cart today or see other security charging carts, check out our catalog or contact us.

Best Of: Technology Carts for Education

When it comes to school technology storage, many educators look for flexible and mobile furniture with ample storage. Here’s our guide to some of the best carts for education, based on your needs.

For Multimedia Entertainment and Storage: The Hamilton Buhl SWB-80 Cart

The Hamilton Buhl SWB-80 is a stylish, all-in-one entertainment center and organizing cart that is perfect for classrooms and technology centers that rely on large-screen presentations or multimedia for their audiences. The cart is built to hold a large LCD TV flat-screen of up to 80 inches with a tilt of plus or minus 15 degrees for comfortable viewing, while using a universal twin mounting design for easy mounting, security, and stability. With protective cart handles and screen protector, swivel casters with locks, and durable steel construction, the cart is built for ease of mobility and strength. The cart also comes with a long power cord with a 4-outlet power strip, surge protector, and cord winder to allow for ease and organization of all plugged-in devices on the cart.

The bottom of the cart features one shelf for holding various devices or DVDs, in addition to a two-door cabinet for additional storage. The cabinet doors also lock, making it a secure cart to keep other electronic devices or sensitive materials save. Overall, this cart is a perfect solution for classrooms, libraries, multimedia labs, and more that utilize a large screen.

For Charging Diverse Models of Tablets and Chromebooks: The Buhl LTAB-30 Cart and the PowerStacker Tower

The Buhl LTAB-30 Cart can hold and charge 30 tablets, and compatible with iPads, Chromebooks, Samsung Galaxy Tabs, Blackberry Playbook, and more. The cart has many security features that protect devices from getting stolen, and comes with 4 spare keys for the locking doors to the cart’s cabinet. In addition, cables and cords within the cart are easy to organize, and the cart comes with two, 15-outlet switched power strips that are breaker protected, complete with a 20 CFM cooling fan to keep all plugged in devices cool while charging. This is the type of cart to use if you have multiple device models that need to charge together.

In contrast, the PowerStacker Tower has modular components that allow you to configure or mix-and-match at your will 10 to 40 devices. The sequential charging ability also makes charging various devices easier without exceeding 15 amps. With the snap in dividers, your devices will also stay safe from damage while in transit from place to place.

For Small Volume Charging of Small Devices: Hamilton 10 Port USB Charging Station
For when you need to charge smaller devices like cell phones, digital cameras, and a few tablets, the Hamilton 10 Port USB Charging Station is the perfect solution. It will sit comfortably on a desk or table top, and is easy to carry around where ever you need it. It supports all popular cell phone models, from Apple to HTC, Samsung to Blackberry, or Nexus and Nokia, and can charge them all together. It’s perfect for teacher lounges, or in small-size classrooms that want a smaller charging station for tablets or small devices.

For Book Mobility and Storage: Hamilton Buhl BTDS-6 Book Truck

The durable Hamilton Buhl Book Truck is a must-have for educational settings that need quick mobility and storage for books. With deep slated shelves to ensure secure ease of moving books around, and double sides shelves, you can store even the heaviest, thickest textbooks and move them around without breaking a sweat. With non-marring casters with two locks, this cart glides easily on various surfaces without making a noise or a mark.  It’s a great option for carting books around to different classrooms, in libraries, archives, and more.

No matter what you need, we have a cart that’s perfect for your school. To learn more about carts and their advantages or specs, contact us.

How to Keep Your Audio Devices Organized

Organizing audio electronic devices, like iPods, tablets, and laptops, and their various cords and accessories can be a hassle, especially in an educational institution. With classrooms changing their different assignments and needs, or businesses working with various devices and changing equipment, keeping devices organized can quickly turn into a headache.  What is the best way to organize them all? Here are our tips and tools on how to keep your audio devices organized, depending on your system.

Audio Devices Themselves

Whether you are working with iPads or Chromebooks, organizing your devices will all depend on your own organizational needs. For devices themselves, we recommend these organizational practices.

Color-Coding: Classrooms can go a long way in organizing their audio devices with a color-coding system. We go much more in-depth on the benefits of a color-coded headphone system in the classroom, and the same ideas can be applied to other components as well. From color-coding devices with their cases, or using a range of colorful headphones, you can better match devices with students. In addition, it helps you keep your classroom more organized, especially when you are applying different assignments to students.

Besides classrooms, businesses or other organizations can benefit from a color-coded system as well. From differentiating between client or employee devices, or in-house to travel devices, you can keep track of your devices without needing to check against a device number.

Asset Tracking: Larger institutions that allow individuals to check out or borrow equipment can benefit greatly from asset tracking, scanning, and barcoding. A typical capability of libraries, it can also be one of the best ways for businesses and large companies to track and manage various pieces of audio equipment for students, employees, and clients.

Long and Short-Term Storage

Managing audio devices while in storage is another challenge that an office or classroom can face. Whether devices will be used day in and day out, or might be stored for an extended period of time, finding the right storage option that provides security and safety is important.

One great organizational tool is a charging cart: many models are versatile and expandable, making it easy to charge multiple devices at once and over time, while keeping devices safe, organized, and secure. Having a special cart can free up storage space in any room, while allowing devices to stay charged over time.

Dual charging and syncing carts are also great for when you also want to keep files and applications backed up and organized. This can be especially important with larger audio libraries and aging hardware, where syncing to cloud storage or with another device can be an important way to maintain the integrity of the data.

Cable Management

For most places, cable management is a key component to keeping electronics organized, whether in-use or while in storage. Cables can easily become tangled, tripped over, or mixed and matched with the wrong audio devices.

Our best solution for these common problems would be to use a cable box. Cable boxes allow you to easily bundle cables up and out of sight, which removes any trips or confusion around plugged in cables. BlueLounge cable boxes also come in various colors and sizes, which can make it easier to organize cables and cords across various stations, or make it easier for a teacher or technician to identify cables when they have to troubleshoot audio equipment in a room.

If your cables are put in short or long term storage, keeping them separated by type, or labeling them with simple labels, can go a long way in saving time and frustration with matching the right cables to the right devices.

Organizing your devices overall coms down to creativity, security, and connectivity. As long as you can connect your organizational system with the purpose in mind, for the device and the user, you’ll find it much easier to keep your devices together. For more tips and tutorials on caring for your devices, contact us.

Hamilton Buhl Carts & Charging Stations

Carts for Tablets, Devices, TV’s, AV,and Books

Hamilton Buhl’s line of carts range from the most basic to more elaborate rolling units, with many add-ons, such as pullout shelves, adjustable sides, stackable units and surge protectors.

Finding exactly what you need to store charge and transport your valuable equipment is easy with the extensive selection of carts. See the entire line of carts and charging stations by visiting Hamilton Buhl online. For a selection of Hamilton Buhl carts, click here.

3 Questions to Ask to Determine When You Need a Charging or Syncing Cart

When most people see a charging or syncing cart, many assume that they are synonymous with each other. In reality, not every charging cart syncs, or every syncing cart charges. Having a charging or charge/sync combo cart comes with its different advantages, but with the price difference, it’s important to know whether or not you’ll need syncing abilities. So how do you determine when you need a charging or syncing cart, or both? Here are a few questions to ask yourself and your team in order to make a decision between the two.

How important does conformity matter between your laptops or tablets?

When determining how helpful syncing capabilities will be for your institution, it is important to ask yourself whether or not your community needs conformity when it comes to programs or files.

For a classroom, syncing carts can make it easier for a teacher or administrator to load and update various programs or assignments to every tablet or laptop. Audio labs, hospitals, businesses, and more might need syncing carts to keep content, records, and other important materials up-to-date and widely available for all users, no matter which laptop or tablet they are using. Syncing carts will therefore be advantageous for environments that need the ease and fluidity that comes with charge/sync carts.

There are other places however where syncing is not as useful. In programs where libraries or tech labs lend out laptops or tablets for individual use, syncing carts might not be needed, especially when these items are loaned out for long periods of time, and users are given more administrative freedoms over their borrowed technology. For example, in cases where libraries loan students the use of an iPad for 3-hour loans, syncing will not be as important as charging, especially since the iPad will change hands frequently. In other instances, syncing can be more disruptive to workflow, especially if it means that users might not have access to their tablets when they are in sync mode.

What technology is already in place for syncing?

Syncing might not be a big deal for your cart if you already have technology in place that allows for syncing in other ways. Online programs or cloud syncing and sharing would make the sync ability on a cart gratuitous, and could pose as a confusing addition to other staff members. However, if you do not have a syncing system already in place, a cart that can sync might become advantageous for your institution, and could improve efficiency for the users. Again, you will have to take into account the main users, your budget, and your support team, to see if syncing carts are worth the investment.

What does your budget call for, and do you have room for expansion?

Of course, you must take your budget into account before you decide on what cart to buy. Depending on how many tablets or laptops you will want to charge at once, you will typically find that just charging carts are less expensive than carts that can charge and sync simultaneously.

In addition, you will want to consider future expansion. If you are expecting an increase in tablets in the upcoming year, you will have to consider getting a cart that will be compatible with those tablets as well. Charging carts might be a better option for the time being, and can be in service for longer.

While these three questions are not meant to be comprehensive, they should help you consider what you might need in terms of a charging cart. For more advice and help in picking a charging or syncing cart, contact us. Our catalog has many models that might be suitable for your needs.

Hamilton Buhl LTT-10 10-Port USB Charging Station: The ISTE “Best in Show” Winner

In modern classrooms, offices and homes, more mobile devices are being acquired at an amazing rate. Some schools and offices have BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) policies and your classroom probably already has dozens of mobile devices ready to use for various teaching purposes. But when you have that much tech, you’re probably starting to notice how much of a task it is making sure it’s all fully charged. If you’ve been charging those devices separately, it can be a quite a chore and can make for some grouchy students, workers and family members when their device gets unplugged in order to charge other equipment.

Fortunately, technology caught up with this inconvenience in the guise of a USB charging station. Rather than having to charge dozens of mobile devices separately, Hamilton Buhl is offering a 10-port charging station that’s been recently voted the ISTE “Best in Show” winner.

Hamilton 10 Port Charging Station LTT-10The Hamilton Buhl LTT-10 10-Port USB charging station can be used any place where mobile devices need continual charging will find benefit using this amazing charger that has no limitations on the best known brand names.

Charging Smartphones

There isn’t a single place where education or business takes place that doesn’t have use of smartphones. Whether those phones get used in your own business or in use from visitors, a large charging station can come in very handy for a variety of situations. In your school, students likely bring in their own smartphones, tablets or laptops to use for lessons and composing papers. Before they go home, you can charge all of their phones at once so they have a fully charged phone for their own safety. For offices, you may offer a charging station as a complimentary service. You can use your station to charge every visitor’s smartphone if they’ve depleted their batteries. It provides a convenient tool to have your employees collectively charge their smartphones after using them all day out in the field. This saves them time having to find places to charge their phones when on the go. What you’ll really appreciate is the charger handles all cell phones from Apple to Nexus, and everything in between. You can’t always find a multi-charger with as much compatibility for every major phone brand.

Tablets

As tablets become the new form of laptop for everyone, the Hamilton Buhl charging station has plenty of room to charge any type of tablet on the market. Since you probably use tablets for media lessons in school, you’ll want to keep them charged at all times so there isn’t a risk that they’ll go dead in the middle of the school day. Designed to look like a rack, the charger can keep all your tablets neatly in position as a form of storage. This prevents your tablets from getting misplaced while continually charging when not in use.

Charging Digital Cameras

Adding to Hamilton’s charging station is the additional ability to charge digital cameras. You’ll love this for personal use if you take more than one type of digital camera with you when you travel. For work, it’s even more handy since you won’t have to find multiple outlets to charge several different cameras.

Of course, this charger can charge each one of the above devices at once if it’s necessary. In a mobile culture, charging needs more convenience, and this charger does it all from one power outlet. You can find the Hamilton Buhl 10-port charging station here at Encore Data Products for a price you won’t find anywhere else. Contact us if you have any questions about the charger and to find more storage and audio products to help make life and education easier.