Frequently Asked Questions

Does a digital visual acuity chart really help that much?
Are there license renewal fees?

eChart Acuity licenses are perpetual. There are no annual or renewal fees. There are also no fees for minor upgrades, and discounts are offered for major upgrades.

Do you have referrals?

Yes. Check out our Testimonials page

Do I have to use a remote control to run the program?

eChart Acuity can be controlled from the included handheld remote control or directly from your computer keyboard. eChart Acuity Basic is controlled with your computer keyboard only.

Can I use eChart Acuity in a room that is 12 feet long without a mirror?

eChart Acuity can be calibrated at just about any distance from 1 foot to 40 feet. However, from a clinical standpoint, the longer the optical testing distance, the more representative your refraction will be to the patients distance visual needs outside of your office.

At least some doctors have recommended 4 meters (13.12 feet) as the optimum distance for refraction. This distance corresponds to a 0.25 diopter accommodative distance, so in theory, your final distance prescription will be 0.25 diopters more minus (or less plus) than your subjective refraction. Any distance less than that is not recommended.

Can I use eChart Acuity for Low Vision refractions and evaluations? How should it be calibrated in this case?

eChart Acuity is ideal for a low vision evaluation. Traditional low vision charts such as the Feinbloom chart only have a few letters (sometimes only a single letter) for any given acuity size. eChart Acuity gives you the freedom of random letter presentation for more accurate refractions and acuity determinations.

For calibration purposes, we recommend calibrating the system for a 20 foot distance. The patient is then positioned at an appropriate testing distance i.e. 4 feet, and acuity measurements are noted with the test distance on the top and the size of the letter on the bottom, such as 5/100 for a 20/100 letter that the patient can read at 5 feet

I have multiple exam rooms. Does my license allow me to use the software in each lane?

Your eChart Acuity license allows you to run the program on one computer at a time.  The remote and receiver can be moved to another computer at any time.

Why do the letters and numbers have a jagged appearance?

The short answer is "You're too close." The slightly longer answer is…

In computer graphics, each point on the screen is called a pixel. When your screen is set to high resolution, the pixels are smaller, and curves appear sharper than the same image at low resolution. A comparison can be made to a mosaic art piece, which is made up of small squares placed to form an image. If you get close to the mosaic, you see the individual tiles, and see that what forms a smooth image from a distance, is actually a collection of jagged pieces. The key point is to be far enough away from the image so that you cannot see the individual tiles, or in the case of eChart, the individual pixels on the screen. For almost every current computer monitor, resolution of 1024x768 or better is possible, and recommended. At a testing distance of more than 10 feet, the patient will be unable to see the individual pixels and will not see jagged lines that you might be able to see if you are sitting right in front of the monitor.

Further, eChart acuity uses "vector graphics" which basically means that every letter and number is displayed to the highest quality possible for any given monitor, regardless of the size of the letter being displayed.

When I try to use the quick-key shortcuts, nothing happens. Why not?

This happens if the pull-down menu is active. You have the choice of using either the pull-down system or quick-keys, but only one system is active at a time. Pressing the [escape] key alternately displays or hides the pull-down menu. If the pull down menu is active, it will be displayed along the upper edge of the screen. To hide the menu and activate quick-key control, you may either press [escape], click on "Hide Menu", or click on the [X] in the upper left corner of the menu. This last method hides the menu, but does not close the program.

When I try to use the quick-key shortcuts, the display shows the letter of the key that I press. Why?

You probably have [Caps Lock] on. Quick-keys are, by design, lower case letters. Capital letters display the actual letter on the display.

What screen size is best?

We recommend at least a 17 inch LCD Monitor for most exam rooms, howevereChart Acuity will work with any size monitor. The important consideration is the larger the screen, the more letters can be displayed on the screen at a given time. If you have a shorter optical distance, a smaller screen may be acceptable. If you have an optical testing distance much more than 20 feet, you will appreciate the benefit of a larger screen such as 19 or 21 inch LCD.eChart Acuity can work with older CRT monitors, but LCD's are strongly recommended.

What is cost for ongoing support?

We provide unlimited support for the first three months after your purchase. Beyond that, email support is provided free for simple issues. Phone support is provided at $80 per hour (1/2 hour minimum), but this fee can be applied toward the purchase of an additional license if it ends up that your computer is no longer capable of running the program.

Can I run other programs at the same time?

Yes. eChart Acuity can run concurrently with other programs such as practice management, EHR, retinal imaging, or topography. If you only have a single monitor, or you use two monitors connected with a simple "Y" adapter, you can switch between programs using [Alt]+[Tab] switching. A more flexible approach is to use a dual monitor setup, where a second graphics card is installed which allows you to use the Windows desktop across the two monitors. eChart is then displayed on the second monitor for patient testing, and the primary monitor remains on your desk. If you are using the remote control to change the eChart Acuity display, you do not need to switch between programs. If you control eChart Acuity with your computer keyboard, you need to make eChart Acuity the active program by either clicking in the display window with the mouse cursor, or using [Alt]+[Tab] switching.

Can I connect two monitors to the same computer?

Yes, there are two basic approaches to accomplishing this. First, you can use a simple "Y" cable to run two monitors from the same output. This results in the same display on both monitors, and is acceptable in some instances. Alternately, you can take advantage of Windows extended desktop by adding a second graphics adapter to your computer. This allows you to have two different displays. Typically, the patient display is shown on the second monitor, and the primary monitor is used for your other tasks.

Can the letters on the monitor be REVERSED since my exam rooms use a single mirrored system?

Yes, the Letters on eChart Acuity can easily be reversed to accommodate a folded (mirrored) room.

Can the size of the letters be adjusted?

Using the <+> and <-> keys, you can increase or decrease the size of letters during the exam. You can also use the numeric keyboard to type in the Snellen denominator directly.

Can the contrast/sensitivity be adjusted?

Yes. eChart Acuity allows you to change contrast from 100% (black on white) to 5, 10, 20, 30, 40, or 50% (gray on white).

Why don’t I see eChart Acuity at the trade shows?

Trade shows are a great way to view a new product and 'kick the tires', but they don't make sense when you're trying to market a very competitively priced product. We focus on maintaining eChart Acuity to keep it as the best value on the market.