BATON ROUGE SCHOOL OF COURT REPORTING
PROFESSIONAL INSTITUTE OF COURT REPORTING
Laptop: PC Compatible (no Apples, please)
Operating System: Windows XP Professional and Windows Vista are the recommended operating systems for use with modern software like Total Eclipse. XP Home and Media versions are okay. New versions of Total Eclipse will no longer run on Windows 95, Windows 98 or Windows ME. (The student version of Total Eclipse, by Advantage Software, Inc., is the computer aided transcription software we recommend and support. ) Macintosh operating systems are not supported.
Minimum: Pentium M
Recommended: i5, i7, Pentium Duo, Core 2 Duo, Mobile Pentium M, Centrino, or AMD Athlon processors running at 1 GHz or above are all more than acceptable. (Caution: Some manufacturers deploy desktop processors in laptop computers. When notebook computers with desktop processors are used for resource-intensive applications like speech recognition, the processor can overheat and become unstable. They should therefore be avoided.)
Note: Students participating in the Voice Writing program will not be happy with the performance of Celeron processor due to its lack of L2 cache memory. Voice recognition software is very labor intensive on the CPU. The Intel Pentium i7 processor is ideal.
When using Windows 7
Minimum: 2GB (Gigabytes)
Recommended: 4 Gigabytes or higher
Note: If you will be using a Windows 7 operating system, please have a minimum of 2 Gigabytes of memory.
Serial Port: Older steno writers typically connect to the laptop PC via a DB9 pin serial port. Some of the newer laptops do not ship with a serial port as standard equipment. If your laptop does not have a serial port, you will need to obtain a "serial – to – USB" adapter in order to connect your writer. A serial to USB adapter can be purchased at electronics stores like Radio Shack, Best Buy and CompUSA for around $35.00. We usually have some available for $15.00 in our office.
Parallel Port: Consider your printer. Some older printers require a parallel type connection. So, take a look at your printer. Your laptop may need a bi-directional, IBM-compatible parallel port. Many newer priniters connect using a USB cable.
USB: Make sure you have at least one USB port. A USB hub may be needed to connect multiple USB devices (external mouse, keyboard, writer, etc.) simultaneously.
Networking Hardware: Either an internal or external wireless G capable networking adapter is recommended.
Internet Access: Study and practice material is frequently provided to students via our website. The BRSCR campus provides free wireless internet access to students. Internet connectivity from home is also recommended (DSL or Cable).
Storage / Drives:
Floppy disk: Some steno writers utilize floppy drives as a secondary means to transfer data from the writer to a PC. With this in mind, you may want to consider having at least an external USB floppy drive for your PC if your stenowriter has a floppy drive.
CD, CDRW or DVD drive: A writable device is recommended for backups.
Hard disk: A minimum size of 30 Gigabytes is recommended. Most new laptops come with a much larger size. A solid state drive (SSD) is recommended for voice applications.
USB Jump (pen) drive. We recommend having a USB jump drive for temporary file transfer, backup and storage.
o Minimum: AVG Anti-Virus
o Recommended: Trend Micro’s PCCIllin
o Minimum: Windows Defender
o Recommended: Spy Hunter (by Enigma Software)
PDF: Adobe Reader
Microsoft Office products, such as Word, Excel and Outlook are recommended.
Internet Explorer version 7.0 or higher is recommended. Only Internet Explorer will deliver the complete experience of our web sites.
Total Eclipse computer aided transcription software is available through the BRSCR.
Windows Media Player 9.0 or higher is recommended for listening to your downloaded MP3 dictation files.
Discounts: Dell offers discounts of 2 to 12 percent to BRSCR students, their family and friends. Visit www.dell.com/brscr.
Laptop Computer Recommendations, Last Updated: August 23, 2012