Avant STAMP Headset Guide

Avant STAMP 4Se Docs


All of Avant´s tests include a Speaking section. Most tests also include a Listening section. For ease of use, we recommend that USB headsets with microphones be used for both of those sections. Other headset and microphone options may work, but may require more preparation steps by your local IT representative. Problems associated with non-USB headsets are more difficult for Avant IT representatives to troubleshoot because they are more dependent on the local computer configuration.

Configuring Headsets

It is recommended that an IT representative test and configure the headsets for each computer that will be used prior to testing. Configuring a USB headset may be as simple as plugging it in. You can test the audio streaming and recording by performing an Avant STAMP sample test.

Instructions for configuring Sound are available through the computer’s operating system Help option. On the configuration screens, make sure that the headset is selected and the volume levels are appropriate.

Using the Headsets

The Testing Coordinator should ensure that arrangements have been made for the headsets to be plugged in before starting the test and that test takers know how to use the in-line controls on the headsets (if the headsets are equipped with them).

Adjusting Microphone Levels

If you are receiving a low mic or low volume error message while recording in the Speaking section you may need to adjust the sound settings in your preferences.

Apple macOS Microsoft Windows
1. Open System Preferences by clicking the  menu and selecting System Preferences.
macOS System Preferences
1. Open the Start menu by clicking it and select the Control Panel from the right pane.
Windows Control Panel
2. Locate and click on the Sound preference pane.
macOS Sound
2. From the Control Panel, locate the Hardware and Sound settings and open it.
Windows Hardware and Sound
3. Once the Sound Preferences are open click on the Input tab.
macOS Sounds Input Tab
3. From the Hardware and Sound section, click on Sound to open the system settings for your audio devices.
Windows Sound
4. Locate the attached headset and ensure it is the active input device (using the Internal Microphone is not recommended in a lab setting).
macOS Microphone
4. Navigate to the Recording tab of the Sound properties panel. If the external microphone is not currently set as the default on the Recording tab, be sure to set it now. Right mouse click and choose “Set as Default Device”.
Windows Recording Tab
5. Adjust the Input volume slider until the input level graph shows movement during normal speaking with the microphone at an appropriate distance from the speaker.
macOS Volulme
The microphone gain should now be set properly to allow students to record their speaking responses. Close System Preferences when done making changes.
5. Double click on the external microphone from the list to open its settings panel.
Windows Microphone
Microsoft Windows Cont.
6. If the slider is set too low, raising it to a higher gain will improve audio quality for speaking responses. Change the slider to a higher gain then press OK.

Windows Volume 1Windows Volume 2
7. From the Sound Panel, speak normally into the microphone and note whether or not the green input graph shows that it is registering your input. If it is not, double click the microphone and raise the gain until it does so.
Windows Volume 2
The microphone gain should now be set properly to allow students to record their speaking responses. Close the Control Panel when done making changes.

Updated July 2016

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