Easily portable buzzer systems fading away?

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the return of AHAN
Auron
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Easily portable buzzer systems fading away?

Post by the return of AHAN » Mon Feb 08, 2016 7:30 pm

I'm in my 15th year of hosting a large-scale tournament, and, for the first time, I'm staring at the real possibility of slapbowl in some rooms. Entry form after entry form indicates teams will NOT be bringing a buzzer system. When pressed, a few have responded that they have one, but it doesn't work, others have cited ownership of a wireless system that is behaving erratically, and still a few more own a system that requires a computer to operate and aren't interested in leaving an unattended, personal laptop behind to run such a system, the way you'd ordinarily do with an Anderson, Zeecraft, Quizmaster, etc.
Has anyone else had this sort of issue? For the first time I've instituted buzzer discounts, but I don't see it having a big impact. Maybe introduce financial penalties for NOT bringing a system? Or push all non-buzzer teams into the same pool and have those rooms do slapbowl? A penny for your thoughts.
Jeff Price, Barrington Station Middle School Coach (2013 MSNCT Champions, 2013 & 2017 Illinois Class AA State Champions)
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Cody
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Re: Easily portable buzzer systems fading away?

Post by Cody » Mon Feb 08, 2016 8:29 pm

I can't say I've seen this (my last two tournaments: 24 college / 21 buzzers; 24 high school / 15 buzzers). On the other hand, most VA high school teams have a buzzer because they participate in Scholastic Bowl, which is buzzer based. What level of competition are we talking here?
Cody Voight, VCU ‘14. I write lots of science and am an electrical engineer.
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the return of AHAN
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Re: Easily portable buzzer systems fading away?

Post by the return of AHAN » Mon Feb 08, 2016 8:31 pm

Middle school. I was especially blown away that a long-time participant in my tourney revealed they can no longer provide a system because the one they have is unreliable and there's no money to get it fixed or replaced. And this is a suburban, public junior high school.
Jeff Price, Barrington Station Middle School Coach (2013 MSNCT Champions, 2013 & 2017 Illinois Class AA State Champions)
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alexdz
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Re: Easily portable buzzer systems fading away?

Post by alexdz » Mon Feb 08, 2016 9:45 pm

I've been wondering for some time if there was any good, centralized way to offer inexpensive buzzer repair for these teams. For teams attending national tournaments, these might offer centralized locations, but for teams who aren't, they're left with no good way to get systems repaired. Are there enough quizbowlers who are electrical engineers or otherwise handy with this kind of work who could offer to do this work at minimal costs? Other sites might be at state coaches conferences, major state tournaments, etc.
Alex Dzurick
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ScottF
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Re: Easily portable buzzer systems fading away?

Post by ScottF » Sun Aug 14, 2016 8:29 am

I hosted 3 MS tournaments last year and only had an issue at our biggest one, 66 teams. I think one answer is raising entry fees and corresponding buzzer discounts. Buzzer systems should pay for themselves over two years (especially with the bonuses some national events give), and actually save money after the two year mark.
I will say that we have gone to giving the buzzer discount at check-in, as some schools take the discount but 'forget' the buzzers
Scott Fowler
River Trail Middle School
Northview High School

billysport
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Re: Easily portable buzzer systems fading away?

Post by billysport » Thu Feb 09, 2017 12:16 am

There are a few apps such as "I buzzed first" on the apple app store (I'm not sure about android). If a set of teams do not bring buzzers to the tournament, you could put them all in the same pool and force them to buy the app (I buzzed first is 99 cents) and download them app on a device for the moderator.
Billy Fryer
Player
Columbiana Middle 2013-15
Shelby County High School 2015-

ashwin99
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Re: Easily portable buzzer systems fading away?

Post by ashwin99 » Sun Mar 26, 2017 10:50 am

What about http://qbbuzzer.com ?
Ashwin Ramaswami
Chattahoochee High School (2013-2017)
Stanford University (2017-)
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