Gemini Revolution Grand first (and second) impressions

After a lot of deliberating and stalking all the information I could get on the Grand, I finally went for it. I was a little weary, since I had bought the LightSpeed last year and ended up returning it. I have a ganglion cyst in my wrist that returned after surgery, so I know that anything I can do to minimize stress on it is going to help lengthen my career.

So anyway.. when the Grand first arrived, I spend a few days practicing with it when I could, and would flip flop between loving it and being insanely frustrated with it. I'd get writing and then all the sudden I'd starting fumbling all over the keys, mistraning all over. After a couple of weeks, I decided it just wasn't going to work for me. I started to compare it to my 8000 and realized that part of the design of the Grand is that the vowel keys bars are extended, so the keys sit out further from the other keys. Because of that, the vowels press down further than on my 8000. I have really small hands, and extending my thumb is one of the most aggrevating things for my wrist. So I packed it all up, sent Jason an email saying it wasn't working, and planned to ship it back to him.

Jason got back to me the next day and we ended up talking on the phone about what tweaks would make it work for me. He suggested that we try raising the vowel keys up to the level of the other keys. So for the next couple days, I triple stacked the keypads on it and tried it out. It was a little awkward with that many pads, but I could tell it felt a lot better. So I sent it back, and now I've had it back and been practicing on it for a few days, just an hour or so a day, and it's PERFECT! It doesn't feel awkward or even different anymore, and my wrist feels great.

A couple other thoughts.. I LOVE the split number bar. I've always bit a bit sloppy with the number bar, so I was a little concerned that I wouldn't like it, but it's actually helping my numbers to be cleaner. The "semi metallic" color I got isn't really metallic at all. I was afraid to go with the metallic colors because I didn't want it to look like a bass boat, but if I was to do it again, I'd go metallic. The German silver that I picked does look nice though, and it's very sleek and professional looking. I was also pleasantly surprised that it came with a good quality Linksys bluetooth adapter for my laptop, so I didn't have to go buy one of those. And it can connect to eight bluetooth devices, so I can use it to add a wireless keyboard or mouse.

Bottom line, I highly recommend the Grand. The quality is great, the flexibility that they offer for customizing it awesome, and the customer service that I got from Jason even before I committed to buying it was great. I think they're the only company that I've dealt with in the steno world that responds to emails either the same day or the next day. Sometimes even within an hour or less. Thanks Jason!

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And the nice thing is we can get almost anyone financed. You can just call me for details. 303-453-0384.

We'll see about that, Jason! LOL I'm going to call you tomorrow!
That sounds liek a challenge. And that can never be good. :)
Did I miss you Thursday Jill?
I'm calling you . . .
Are you having any stacking problems on this machine. I hear that is a big problem on the Mira?

Have you used the audiosync capabilities on the Revolution?

How is the interface with your software?

Hello Heather,

Thanks for the encouraging information. I had heard from someone that the key pads have a different touch than the Stentura. Could you explain if you feel any difference in the two?
I'm guessing that what you mean is the landing of the keys? At first when I compared the Gemini to my 8000, they felt different. The 8000 has more of a crisp, solid landing. The Gemini is a little softer. I did some poking around in there and realized that it's because the Gemini keys come to a landing on a felt pad. The 8000 stroke ends in a solid metal-on-metal landing. Important to note that a solid landing is the worst thing for your hands you can have. Studies have been done about why piano players don't get repetitive stress injuries like typists do, and it was concluded that it was because pianos come to a softer landing, not a solid abrupt end like the 8000 (and I assume the mira has the same mechanics as the 8000.) At first I felt like the Gemini was a little "squishy," but after a few days on it, I don't notice anything different at all. No doubt that there's a difference, but I guess I'm trying to say it's a good difference, and takes almost no time to get used to it.

Since I'm so bad at posting on here, I'll add a quick note that I've been wanting to say. I had to take my 8000 to the RPR last weekend because I waited until the last minute to try to hook up the Gemini non-bluetooth and didn't have the mini usb cable it needed. By the end of the hour of practice I did and the tests, my wrist was killing me. On the other hand, I just transcribed eight hours of tapes in two days on the Gemini and my wrist didn't bug me even the slightest. I couldn't be any happier with it.

Also, thanks for the compliments on the puppy that I forgot to respond to!
Hi there. I just rented the revolution and have written on it for about 10 hours. i like it but am worried that i am making too many errors. i was on the stentura 8000 and writing more cleanly. i am a student at 80 wpm right now. i am thinking of making the keys a little less soft so the machine can feel more like a stentura. what do you think? thanks. t. klein
I would give that a try. Is easy enough to take them back to normal. I decided I didn't like it too 'touchy'. :) I have mine at the normal settings and don't play w/them.
Thanks Rhoda. when you got your machine, was "normal" not a light touch? since mine is a rental, i know its been played around with so i really should ask jason what the average setting is. T.
Yes, I consider 'normal' not the lightest touch. Jason can help you adjust it.
Thanks Rhoda. I had Jason help me today and it is already much better. T.


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