I downloaded some software

AvatarLaguna Hiker

I downloaded some software demos, and concluded that there aren't any really great choices out there. There are a lot of free programs, but they are generally single-monitor apps that are probably meant for podcasting. Several inexpensive programs, like PromptDog, can only process very short files, and they tend to be very clunky. For example, PromptDog requires the operator to drag the talent window over to the TP monitor whenever the app is started. IMHO, that's pretty lame.


I found two programs that look okay. The first is Ultra-Prompter, which runs about $150. The interface is rather old and not entirely Windows-standard, but (a) it supports dual monitor; (b) it mirrors text on the TP monitor, while leaving the operator monitor unmirrored; and (c) it handles larger files (at least the size that I use) without problem.


The TP monitor is easier to work with than in other software–Ultra-Prompter automatically displays full-screen on the TP. The operator and TP screens sync very well, even when the TP is mirrored, and the program has fairly conventional control keys–Up-Arrow to increase speed, Down-Arrow to decrease, and Spacebar to pause/resume. 


The second program is ZaPrompt Pro 3.0. It has pretty much the same capabilities as Ultra-Prompter, at $179. Dual monitor with talent mirroring; it can handle larger files, and it doesn't require dragging the talent window to the teleprompter screen. It's interface is more Windows-standard, but it has its own quirks. For example, changing the font size only affects the editor–a separate control is used for font-size on the prompter screen.


These programs are about as good as anything else I've seen, and they do seem to be the best in its price range. I can use either one with professional talent without embarrassing myself or spending half an hour getting the TP working. So, I'll go with one of the two.

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