Broken Handwriting Using SMART Board Interactive Flat Panel/TV


A little off topic this one, but here’s the answer to something that’s been puzzling me for a while. Why is it you get gaps in the lines when you write on some SMART Board interactive flat panels and not others?

I originally thought it must something obscuring the leds that run round the side of these flat panels, so I gave them a good dust. No joy. Then I tied fiddling about with the PC’s graphics properties, making sure my resolution was full HD, and the image was fitting the panel perfectly. No joy. So then I convinced myself it was the driver software, so reinstalled the latest version of it. Still no joy.

Finally I realised the answer is simple: its the pen you are using. Teacher’s occasionally lose the two (yes two!) pens that come with SMART Board flat panels, so decide to use something else instead. Most of the time this is fine. A finger works perfectly. But occasionally, they decide to use something with a fine nib. Well who doesn’t like writing with a fine nibbed pen? And it’s the fine nibbed pen that causes the gaps in the lines. So there you have it, a simple solution to what at first appears a complex technical problem.

Not sure if this is an issue with all other flat panels/TVs, but I can say for certain it also happens with Prowise panels, because I tested one. So if your handwriting is breaking up, take a look at the pen you’re using first, before you spend hours working your way through technical fixes.


Old style (thin nibbed) SMART Board pens on the left don’t work well with interactive flat panels. Note that the new style pens on the right (they give you two to lose!) have much wider nibs.

UPDATE: You also need to check the SMART Board driver has detected the correct model of flat panel/TV. Right click on the SMART Board monitor in the system tray and select ‘SMART Settings’ then run the ‘Connection Wizard’. Check the model it detects is the same as the model you have. The model number is printed on the top right of the flat panel/TV.


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