Scoping Equipment Start-up Costs
Here are some links for CAT vendors. The average cost for edit versions is
around $1,500, I think. Digital CAT is free, but only if you have a
reporter on Digital CAT that requests the software for you (I think... )
http://www.stenograph.com - Case CATalyst
http://www.eclipsecat.com - Eclipse
http://www.procat.com - ProCAT
http://www.stenovations.com - Digital Cat
http://www.caption.com - Cheetah TurboCAT
http://www.globalcat32.com - GlobalCAT
http://www.gsclion.com - StenoCAT
Some places you can find classifieds where people are selling used CAT
While it might appear that going the used route might be cheaper, oftentimes
it's not because you have to pay a license tranfer fee and also usually pay
for support, so sometimes it's better to just buy it new.
For pedals, check out http://www.dictationdepot.com and eBay.
You might want a transcriber too, and eBay is a good place to find those. I
got my Sony BM-50A on eBay for $36. It works great!
Here's a list of a few items to
consider. They're listed in order of importance to ME. Others might
place them in a different order. It's by no means a complete list.
· CAT software
· Filing and recordkeeping system
· Internet access
· Grammar reference (Recommend Lillian Morson's English Guide for
Court Reporters and/or The Gregg Reference Manual )
NOTE: Some people do not consider this a MUST-HAVE item. I do.
· Unabridged dictionary (can cost as little as $10 on CD-ROM)
· Fax machine or modem
WOULD BE NICE TO HAVE:
· Reference books (medical, legal) Sometimes the Internet doesn't
have all the answers!
· High-speed Internet connection
· Backup transcriber
When you have a significant outlay of cash to buy software and equipment,
the first thing that comes to mind is to cut corners. Some things you need
can be purchased used, i.e. a transcriber and books. There are some
pitfalls involved when buying used software. There is a license transfer
fee involved for most CAT systems, usually around $200. If you do not
transfer the license, you cannot get upgrades and support. It is also
illegal. If you buy new software, support is included. Stenograph's
support with a new package is for one year. Advantage's is for three months
and then you have to renew it. You need to factor the cost for the license
transfer fee and the support package to evaluate the savings involved with
You can visit the free scopist classifieds to find a transcriber. The two
most popular ones seem to be Sony and Sanyo. You will need to make sure the
transcriber will play more than one speed. Mine is a three speed but you
can make do with two and perhaps later have it modified. Make sure it
plays standard cassettes. Most reporters use the standard size.
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