Although most hardware can be acquired either directly through the Tier One suppliers such as IBM, Dell, Compaq and HP or literally thousands of different resellers, there exist one fundamental flaw with these traditional suppliers – lack of knowledge with respect to how technology interacts in a dental scenario.
Tier One manufacturers typically build thousands of base units per day and ship them to thousands of resellers across the country. These units are then modified to meet your need. A good idea for the stand-alone computer but a mind field when trying to create a specialized network. The reason being is that most tier one product is built in quality controlled environments and when it is modified or configured to meet a specific need (i.e. trying to add a capture card) by a reseller or personal computer store owner its core quality controlled configuration has been changed, creating a potential issue between the proprietary manufacturer installed configuration and the configuration needed to run the added device. This is why major corporations do not buy their product from say – Business Depot or Computer City but rather the tier one supplier directly, as their volumes afford them to have the supplier test and configure everything from the onset.
Resellers tend to simply sell product without asking the why or what the product will be used for. Will it be networked? Will it be used to capture digital images? What software will it be used with? Does it have the required capture cards? Et cetera. In most cases the reseller has no knowledge of the dental industry or how these devices will be used. Resellers also tend to sell either:
1. Tier One equipment (which is full of proprietary components or software that make the unit device hard to configure for interaction with industry devices, such as intra-oral cameras or digital radiography)
2. Tier Two – which are clones of the Tier 1 equipment that are usually put together with the same components under different brands but with much less quality control and less after purchase service.
3. True Clones – which are built to order from any number of computer store, passing on the manufacturer warranty of the inherent parts to you and usually giving a service warranty up to one year.
Clones are good in one respect, in that they are built for the intended use and not pre-built and then modified to meet the requirement. However, very few clone producers understand the intricacies of the dental industry and how imaging, practice management software and alike interact with a networked device, such as a simple printer or computer.
Much like a reseller Compudent builds unique devices for the dental industry using only tier one parts. Allowing the devices within the network to be built to work not only together but also with industry software systems and ancillary devices used in the dental profession. The profession itself and the systems used in dentistry are unique enough that a simple device bought off the shelf will not meet all your needs.
While CompuDent Systems is primarily a services company, we do have strong relationships with hardware vendors and suppliers. We can supply or source all of your computer and integration hardware and software, or we can build a list that you can use to shop around.
As a one-stop source for technology planning and integration, we work with various partners and vendors to develop custom devices to allow computers to be more easily included in dental environments. We’ve designed many custom brackets, wiring harnesses, and systems that are available nowhere else, and allow computers to be installed and used in convenient and accessible locations in the operatories.
It must also be noted that although many computing devices are in fact intelligent they do not simply work out of the box. There is a significant amount of configuration that must occur in order to make these components “talk to each other”. Some might see this cost as a bit obtrusive from the onset, but it creates a system that is above all, reliable. In the dental industry we have become so reliant on our technology that a “down day” with respect to our systems mean a lost day of production or loss of irreplaceable data.