Procurement of headset and webcamera
Procurement of headsets and web-camera for PC/MAC is now a part of the computer accessory programme.
If you are to use your computer for voice communication, we highly recommend the use of a headset and not the computers built-in speaker and microphone. The sound quality will be much higher, and lets you focus more on the conversation than any disturbances in the form of feedback or echo. In addition to this, having a web-camera separate from your build-in web-camera lets you place the camera in a much more suitable angle and placement, so to let the other party see you body language and expressions clearly.
All USB devices should work with any computer, but if you have a newer model of PC or MAC, look after a "USB-C" connection. If you have an older model you might have trouble connecting equipment with USB-3 in their specifications. The IT Department has tested a large amount of equipment that we know works.. These are the most reliable options.
A web-camera is primarily designed for putting on top of a computer screen for personal use. Newer models of laptops will usually have a built-in camera that can be used for most needs. The webcam recommended below is mainly recommended towards a communication solution for stationary computers at the workplace. As a separate USB camera, Logitech 925e is recommended
UiB har decided on using Plantronics Blackwire as the standard headset for employees. These are comfortable headsets with a cable to the computer, and is good for everyday use. There are two models, C3210 with one speaker and C3220 with a speaker on each ear with stereo sound. These are available in type A (Normal USB) and type C (USB-C)
We do not recommend these headsets if you:
- Have conversations more than 30 - 45 minutes from your computer
- Use the phone more than 3 - 4 conversations a day
- Work in an open office setting with varying degrees of sound pollution.
These headsets' first purchase are covered by central funding. Later purchasing of these or more advanced headsets are to be covered by your respective departments. Per 31-12-19 the IT department still has several of these headsets available in storage on the second floor of Nygårdsgaten 5.
In UiB's Software Center, you can find the software "Plantronics HUB", which we recommend you install on your computer. This will update the firmware in your headsets so that they stay up to date in functionality, and choose settings for sound.
If you are in need of a more specialized headset, it's important to note what needs you have. The first thing to consider is if you need one or two speakers, and if it needs to be wireless. You may not know exactly what one may need until you've settled in to your new working situation. It's therefore recommended that you take some time to figure out your needs before you for example buy a headset with noise cancellation.
- Two speakers is useful in a open office environment or for those who like to listen to music while they work, as it creates the illusion of isolation.
- One speaker is unusually preferred by those actively on the phone in an office or in a reception where ones attention goes between talking to people directly and being on the phone.
- A wireless headset has a higher cost. The people with need for such a headset is for those who have a lot of movement during their workday, or for those with a cluttered desk (cables and clutter don't mix well)
- Headsets with cables are cheaper, and are more reliable from a stability and support perspective.
There are two solutions for wireless headsets, DECT and Bluetooth. If you want to use a traditional phone, you need to chose a DECT headset. DECT is not good for music, nor noise cancellation to UiBs knowledge. On the other hand, they do have a great range, which is useful for users who move larger distances.
For most users, Bluetooth headsets are the best solution as they can connect to phones, PC and tablets, support music with a decent quality and has a range of about 4 -5 meters. Note that with Bluetooth headsets there is a small USB-dongle that you can connect to you computer. We recommend using this, especially for music, to get better sound quality. This dongle is small and one can easily lose track, and we recommend you keep that in mind as it can be quite expensive to replace.
For headsets from Jabra or Plantronics, we recommend that you install the equivalent software from the Software center to keep the devices updated and configurable.
Recommended headsets are: