Tuesday, February 22, 2011

People Counter Review for Libraries Amseco E2-D2


Amseco E2-D2 Gate Counter monitoring library foot traffic.
 Having detailed information about the usage of your library is important, this is especially so in this day in age when many feel the library is becoming obsolete.  So, we as librarians are better off tracking the way our resources are being used and arming ourselves with the data (which can be used to defend budget cuts or support for request of additional funds for improvements).

One of the ways libraries measure usage is by tracking foot traffic.  Like many libraries, we had the old trusty infrared transceiver with reflector located at the main entrance with a digital readout.  Well, who knows how long it served us (by the looks of the unit, way before my time), but the digital counter eventually died and was out of service for some time before we got around to replacing it.  The old unit was out of production and so repairing it was out, we had no other choice to replace the entire library people counter system. 9CU5VJRGVN7Y

When I started to research people counters for libraries there were few reviews and very minimal information on the internet (which spurred me to share my experience with this blog and our experience assembling and installing the Amseco E2-D2).  There are many different devices available nowadays, some use heat sensors, camera systems, some that feed data wirelessly to software, and many that are the same traditional beam and reflector type.

Wanting to keep it simple, we went with the Amseco E2-D2 EBP-4072C Dual Counter Annuciator System "people counter" or some call it a gate counter. The cost was around $250.00.  It does what it needs to do.  It has a dual beam that bounces off a reflector that can be up to 22ft away.  There is a toggle switch to record either traffic entering or traffic exiting.  It also comes with a chime option which we have decided to not use.  I am sure retail shops would employ the chime function, but it is just not necessary for our library to know when a patron has setpped through the doors.

There is quite a bit of assembly required.  You will have to connect all of the wiring to the unit which connects to the power supply and to the bell if you want to use the chime.  You will need a drill, screwdrivers, pliers, and possibly anchors (depending on what type of material you are going to mount the unit on).

While the Amseco E2-D2 has only been in operation for a couple of days it seems to be doing great.  The way we have the beam cutting through the cutouts in our magnetic security gates looked like it would initially be a problem but it turned out not to be an issue (line of sight alignment is crucial).  The nice thing with the transceiver is that you can actually see the beams illuminate when you align the reflector, which make it easier to set-up the reflector.

There are much more advanced systems for tracking foot traffic for libraries available, but all we needed is a solid unit that we could record daily and reset.  The Amseco unit has a large LED readout for the count located on the top and a recessed yet accessible rest button that looks fairly sturdy (it will be reset everyday after count is recorded) and let's hope it is up to the task of being pushed everyday. 

I will update this blog when the library people counter gets more use and notify readers of any change in performance.

*Information contained within these pages do not necessarily reflect the opinions or views of Schreiner University.

5 comments:

  1. Where did you purchase this unit? Amseco site does not list this model. Do you know is this an improvement over their older model (EWP 202)? We had continual problems with them.

    ReplyDelete
  2. @James

    We purchased the unit through Demco, the unit is avail through the catalog and online. We had an ancient counter before manufactured by a company called M Walker (USA). The beam continued to work but the digital display died and could not be replaced. I don't have any experience with the EWP 202 model, though I did find it online. It is about a hundred dollars cheaper and does not appear to have the same range (also reviews seem to be poor).

    ReplyDelete
  3. You may want to check out this newer patron counter, http://sensourceinc.com/PC-1D6M.htm.
    It is much smaller than the Amseco unit, only 1.26" x 0.87" x 1.08".

    ReplyDelete
  4. @James

    The smaller patron counter the previous poster mentioned seems pretty slick.

    http://sensourceinc.com/PC-1D6M.htm

    It's not nearly as big and bulky as that Amseco unit.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Check out the EZ Counter available from ezpeoplecounters.com. The unit is self contained, runs on batteries and requires no reflectors! It counts in one direction and has an range up to 45 feet. Affordable at $275.

    ReplyDelete