Vision for physics

7th January 2005 at 00:00
LogIT Datavision CX is the latest in a family of units for science experiments where you collect temperature readings, display them and play with them. The still current LogIT Datameter 1000 has travelled with me to training days everywhere - and explaining how to use it, even to customs officers, was easy.

With a LogIT name it handles the practical science that schools need to do and feasibly can do. But the Datavision outshines this as a fast, inexpensive bench instrument that physics teachers want. For example, it has an oscilloscope feature that lets them see between sound waves and measure their frequency. And for biology, it is a data-logger that stores field-work graphs - a logical menu helps you set when you want to start and stop recording.

Unusually, there is a back-lit colour screen which displays results as a graph, bar chart or a table. You'll appreciate how colour differentiates one graph line from another and you can print the screen through a PC. I'm using an early model, but any day now a firmware upgrade will be released on the internet. For compatibility, Datavision has both USB and serial sockets to connect to the PC and the USB socket powers the unit. Cleverly, a software driver is already built into most Windows versions so there's no need to insert a driver CD mid-lesson. Many USB systems nag for a driver disc - even when you use a different USB socket to last time - but happily it is not the case here. The engineered solution to this lesson-staller is commendable.

Newcomers wanting to go large with class sets will enjoy the rugged construction, good battery life and a screen just good enough to permit data analysis without a PC. Existing users have an easy bridge to new functions because this unit works with the oldest LogIT sensors - even from the days when the curriculum first said we should use computers in practical science.

LogIT Datavision CX

Price pound;359

www.dcpmicro.com

Griffin Education Tel: 01509 555944

Commotion

Tel: 01732 773399

Fitness for purpose *****

Ease of use *****

Features****

Quality ****

Value for money *****

Training - IT in Science and Roger Frost

Roger Frost is the author of "Data-logging in Practice", pound;16.50 from ASE. He is showing his books and software at BETT

Stand SW100

Tel: 01763 209 109

www.rogerfrost.com

www.ase.org.uk

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