Re: Braille Displays



Is the mantis braille display quiet? I’m asking because I work in radio broadcasting and audio editing. I don’t need a noisy braille display making noise in the background while recording something. I need something that’s quiet so as not to interfere with the recording. Just wondering.



On Apr 9, 2021, at 6:43 AM, Pat Seed <> wrote:

Hi Pam and All,
I Remember the Versa-Braille run by cassette!

That is what I started with, along with the PMC101 Micromate run on DOS and CP/M!

Of course, (with smiles), we realize, that dates all of us who remember and used this technology.

Blessings and All the Very Best,
Pat Seed
(807) 473-0909

----- Original Message ----- From: "Pamela Dominguez" <>
To: <>
Sent: Friday, April 09, 2021 9:12 AM
Subject: Re: [TechTalk] Braille Displays

The first refreshable braille I saw was the original versabraille that used cassettes for the data. I remember going to a lecture on it, and wondering: "Braille on a cassette?" They also gave out a thermoformed handout which I had in my junk for quight a while. Pam.

-----Original Message----- From: chris judge
Sent: Wednesday, April 07, 2021 4:00 AM
Subject: Re: [TechTalk] Braille Displays

I think the first refreshable Braille display I used was an alva 80. It was the size of a table top and cost around 15 grand.

Chris Judge

-----Original Message-----
From: <> On Behalf Of Monte Single
Sent: April 7, 2021 1:43 AM
Subject: Re: [TechTalk] Braille Displays

I started working for the local school board in 89, producing hard copy braille on a perkins brailler.
I recall a student having a versabraille, maybe one of the first ones with a braille display; maybe it was 20 cells.
I do not recall the price, but it was thousands of dollars.

That was over thirty years ago and braille displays are still big ticket items.

-----Original Message-----
From: <> On Behalf Of Cristóbal
Sent: April 6, 2021 10:00 PM
Subject: Re: [TechTalk] Braille Displays

I am reluctant to invest so much money on any Android based display or note taker. When you start talking about five or six thousand dollar devices, I don't think it's unreasonable to expect to be able to use such a device for many many years. Being Android based as some of these newer devices are, that's just simply not going to be the case.
I made a similar argument to Brian Hartgen over Twitter when he was touting the Polaris a a business friendly device. He dismissed me at first saying that he was speaking as a business owner and that the price tag hesitancy thing was lazy thinking or some such thing and when I informed him that I too was a business owner and still wasn't sold on the price tag, he blocked me. Talk about thin skinned.... But hey, at least he had the "manners" to tell me that he was going to block me before he did so... What a swell guy. Some people.
Back in 2011, I was debating whether to get an Apex that was almost $6000 but instead opted for a 40 cell Brailliant BI and iPad and iPhone. That Brailliant lasted me over ten years and hung around outlasting something like 5 iPhone models and three iPads. Granted, the iOS and Braille experience wasn't always the best, but combining the display with various iOS devices over the years at least in my mind, gave me way more productivity and more bang for my buck than a display where the OS traditionally isn't supported for maybe more than three or four years.
Even then, the Apex would've lasted way longer than some of these newer Smart note taker/display hybrids.
I recently scored a Freedom Scientific F80 Braille display on eBay for $305. I first wrote the seller asking if everything worked, and they replied that yes, all cells, connectors and buttons were functional. I had my sighted wife look at the pictures and she was able to read me the serial number off of the display. I called Vispero and asked about its history and if it had ever been serviced and I was informed that it was serviced and cleaned back in 2016. The 80 cell display was from back in 2006. This thing is huge. I'm talking a beast of a display, but so far, so good. I've got it set up at my desktop workstation and now I've got a fully functional 80 cell display that back in the day went for almost $8000. Side note, looks like this seller's got some sort of hookup or something. At the time that I purchased it, they had two devices up for sale. Since then, I believe they've posted four more 80 cell displays. Again for roughly $300. Keep in mind, you're talking about devices that are really long in the tooth, so buyer beware and all that. Their postings are easy enough to find. You just have to search for Braille display or something along those lines. There aren't too many on at any given time.
I still have the Brailliant BI 40, but it's a refurbished model Humanware provided me as a replacement for my old display that I sent in late last year to be fixed, but got lost by UPS. Fine by me. It cost me nothing and now my Brailliant was at least serviced and inspected by Humanware.
I'm thinking of selling my Brailliant and putting that money towards either a Mantis 40 cell display or the Orbit Reader 40. I'm more inclined to opt for a device that's maybe dumber as far as on board connectivity, but that I know I can use for many years to come and not have to worry about it slowing down or not being able to keep up with the demands that innovation sometimes brings and just act as a display with maybe some built in file management features. I mean, if I want Internet connectivity and all those bells and whistles, that's what a smart phone or tablet and Bluetooth connections are for.
Just my two cents.


-----Original Message-----
From: <> On Behalf Of Joe Orozco
Sent: Saturday, April 3, 2021 12:44 PM
Subject: Re: [TechTalk] Braille Displays

The great thing about Humanware products is the ability to pay in installments. I don’t think APH offers this flexibility. If I can throw one more product into the mix, it would be the new Braille Sense
6 from HIMS. It’s far and away the most expensive of the displays mentioned here at $5,795, but HIMS now also offers payment plans.

Here’s the link in case it’s of interest:



On 3/31/21, Abbie Taylor <> wrote:
The Brailliant BI 20X does open Word files, but if you edit them, it
saves them as text files. I hope that helps.

Abbie Johnson Taylor, Author

This email has been checked for viruses by AVG.

Join to automatically receive all group messages.