The Usability Laboratory

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The Usability Laboratory offers a specially equipped usability engineering facility with resources well over NZ$100,000.

This is permanent facility which is available for commercial and research projects.  At the most, facility use costs our clients NZ$1,200 per product/project.

The Usability Laboratory offers two types of facilities:

  • A formal suite of rooms:

    • 2 testing rooms.
    • 1 viewing room.
    • 1 overview room.
    • 1 reception area.
  • Portable suite:

    • 1 camera.
    • 1 microphone.
    • 1 scan converter.
    • 1 picture-in-picture mixer.
    • 1 DVD writer.


  • Comprehensive facilities.
  • Flexible setup.
  • Enables detailed and insightful findings to be made.
  • Collect a wide range of qualitative and quantitative data.
  • Collect data from the computer screen.
  • Record users facial and body expressions directly.
  • Developers able to view test while in progress - provides instant recognition of usability issues and better insights into user requirements.
  • Enables the provision of usability summary and storyboard of findings.

view to single user roomThe Usability Laboratory Formal Suite

The Usability Laboratory has two user testing rooms:

  • A single user room ideally suited for testing one or two users at a time.
  • A group user room which can hold up to twenty people.

Single User Room

  • Single user studies.

  • Two-user studies (using same computer).

  • Personal space.

  • Viewable from viewing room through one way glass. 

Group User Room (7 x 7 metres)

  • Studies with more than one single user.
  • Observing group interaction.
  • Focus groups.
  • Design sessions.
  • Viewable from viewing room through one way glass.
  • Portable furniture.
  • Customisable arrangements.
  • Large whiteboards (including a printable one) and projector screens.
  • Portable interactive large interactive display surface (LIDS) boards.
group user room
Observation Equipment

Screen capture:

  • Directly attached to the computer.

  • Direct screen image.

  • No obstruction from user.

  • No screen flicker.


  • Unobtrusive.
  • Remotely controlled from the viewing room.
  • Offer zoom, and high-speed auto-focus and wide-range pan/tilt functionality.
  • Portable to any position in the rooms.


  • Unobtrusive.
  • Directional.
  • No difficult setup.
  • Whole room easily heard.

Viewing Room

  • High-tech.
  • Wide range of tools.
  • Digital equipment.
  • Recorded images clear and easy to see.
  • Flexible setup - use of both or one testing room at one time.
  • 2 eight-input-eight-output switchers provide eight different inputs to be directed to up to eight different outputs.
  • 2 four-quadrant multiplexer systems (four separate video inputs, one mixed video output)
    • 1 configurable: quadrants are moveable, resizeable, zoomable and cropable.
  • 1 picture-in-picture multiplexer system (two separate video inputs, one mixed video output)
    • Configurable: insert moveable and resizeable.
  • 2 digital editing video recorders.
  • 1 analog video recorder.
  • 6 14" monitors.
  • 1 21" monitor.
viewing room

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