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Plantronics Voyager Pro UC: Model Designations

Several people have been in touch regarding my recent review of the Plantronics Voyager Pro UC Bluetooth headset. It seems that they would like to purchase the device but want to be certain that they are selecting the appropriate model. After all, why pay for the wideband capable model if you only application will be with a cell phone? Conversely, if you really want wideband capability you’d better get the Plantronics Voyager Pro UC V2.

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LifeSize Passport Now Supports Video Calling Skype Users

LifeSize-Passport-300In a most interesting press release LifeSize has announced support for video calling to/from Skype user from the LifeSize Passport end-point. The new capability is projected for release in the coming v4.8 software. It will be interesting it give this a try.

It happens that I have a Passport in my home office at the moment. It was acquired earlier this year in the process of my failed attempt to entice LifeSize to join a VUC call using their video conference bridge. In my office the Passport is connected to a Sony 26” Bravia HDTV via HDMI. The camera connects to the Passport device via a Firewire cable.

The Passport is a small device. It’s small enough to be portable. I’m told that some people carry it around as they travel, using it over hotel broadband. The camera includes a built-in microphone array. The video quality presented is quite good, especially in light of the rather modest cost of the device.

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A Ramble In Search Of A Topic: Podcasts, NAB, Convergence of Broadcast & IP Comms

three-podcastsAt this very moment I face a bit of a problem. What to write about? I have a lengthy list of ideas, notes and incomplete drafts. Oddly enough, none have any appeal at this very moment. Yet here I sit, on board a Jet Blue flight from Houston to New York…which is typically prime time for wordsmithing without distraction.

When I travel I tend to listen to podcasts. Often I’ll catch up on VUC calls that I’ve missed. Today I have a couple of episodes of Escape Pod and CBC Radio’s Spark on my phone. All three are favorites and well worth your time to give them a listen.

Like it not, my work is somewhat seasonal. This time of year we are consumed by the reality of the National Association of Broadcasters Annual Convention & Exposition, aka NAB 2011. NAB opens a week from today. Much of the coming weekend I will spend helping to get our booth ready for the show.

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ClearOne Chat 160 Earned Its Keep This Past Week

Clear-One-Chat160-200Last Fall I bought a ClearOne Chat 160 USB attached conference audio device. It was purchased to make it easier for Tim Panton to gather the Asterisk Dev crowd to join the VUC call following Astricon 2010.  In that role it seemed at least adequate, much better than what we used at Astricon 2009.

Since then the ClearOne Chat 160 has loitered about my office seeing only occasional use. This past week I shipped it to Milwaukee with some Pixel Power equipment that I was supposed to demonstrate. This demo was to be a little unusual in that I wasn’t going to Milwaukee myself.

The plans was that I was to give the demo remotely. Our salesman would bring the equipment in to the prospects site, get it setup and online. I would be given access using GotoMeeting. For a portion of the demo I’d drive the gear from my office in Houston. For a second portion I’d show them the desktop of the system that I was using, which gave an example of how the product they were evaluating would be integrated into their facility.

Some of what they saw would be local to them, providing real HD video output to a proper HD monitor. Locally they would be able to assess the output quality and the basic performance of the hardware. The systems that they viewed remotely would serve as an example of the newsroom workflow tools that we provider, giving them a view of the news dept role in preparing graphics for each newscast.

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