Even as an increasing number of instrument manufacturers migrate toward modern touch screens, many engineers say they still prefer the tactile feel of knobs and buttons, a new survey says.
The Test and Measurement reader survey
, conducted jointly by Design News
sister publications EDN
and EE Times
, showed that engineers prefer instruments with knobs and buttons over touch screens by a 3-to-1 margin. Of the 377 engineers and technicians who were surveyed, 54% said they like an instrument to have knobs or buttons, while 17% wanted a box with a touch screen and 19% wanted a computer interface with a mouse.
EDN editor Martin Rowe said that age played a role in the decision. “The survey result shows that younger engineers do have a higher preference for touch screens than those aged 45 and older,” Rowe wrote. “But even among the younger group, there is a significant preference for knobs and buttons over touch screens.”
Do you prefer a knob or a touch screen? Is the survey an accurate reflection of engineers’ preferences? Tell us what you think below, and then check out the Test and Measurement reader survey over at EDN.
READ MORE ARTICLES ON TEST & MEASUREMENT:
We’re heading to Philly and Houston! Design & Manufacturing Philadelphia will take place Oct. 7-8, while Design & Manufacturing Texas will be in Houston Oct. 13-14. Get up close with the latest design and manufacturing technologies, meet qualified suppliers for your applications, and expand your network. Learn from experts at educational conferences and specialty events. Register today for our premier industry showcases in Philadelphia and Texas!
Senior technical editor Chuck Murray has been writing about technology for 31 years. He joined Design News in 1987, and has covered electronics, automation, fluid power, and autos.