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Proximity Cards Simplified
A proximity card or prox card is a contactless smart card which can be read without insertion into a card reading device. In addition to cards, there are also key fobs and tags that work in a similar fashion. Proximity cards, fobs and tags have a multitude of uses. The most common is door access but this technology can also be used for anything that requires fast data processing speeds like inventory control, identification, employee time and attendance, tolls, ticketing and much more. When ordering proximity cards there are a few things you need to know.
Choose a Type of Proximity Card
There are two types of proximity card designs. One is described as a clam shell card, it is a thicker, cost effective option. ID information is typically applied to this type of card utilizing a 10-mil pvc card that has an adhesive back sold separately. The main benefit to this choice is that the adhesive ID can be removed and the clam shell card can be reused.
The second option is a thinner card that can be fed through an ID card printer to combine both access and ID into one card. The main benefits to this card are 1) the ability to print on the front and back of the card and 2) a mag stripe can be incorporated so the card can serve multiple purposes. The main disadvantage to this choice is that the prox card cannot be reused.
Find the Right Prox FormatIdentify the right prox format for your current door access system which should be specified in information your IT or Security department has regarding your door access system. If you are reordering prox cards, you can just look on a previous box of prox cards you’ve ordered to find it. The most common format is format code H10301 which is a 26 bit card.
Programming InformationOnce the format you need is determined, the part number you would order can be identified. This part number will depend on the manufacturer of the card, IDville offers two manufacturer options, HID and Magicard.
Card Range and Facility CodeNext, you need to specify the data you want programmed into the card. Essentially, this is the code that will be scanned by the door access reader. Sometimes the first couple of numbers specify a building or facility and the rest specify the card holder. Then specify the starting card range number, this is the internal card number that will be programmed into each card and identify the holder of the card.
Proximity cards are pre-programmed for you, we want to ensure the programming is done correctly and that you get exactly what you need. Prox cards are pricey compared to regular PVC ID cards and if the programming is incorrect they will be useless to you. We want to ensure that doesn’t happen. Our ID System Specialists are here to help with any question you may have throughout the process. So just pick up the phone and call, our phone system is not automated, you will get a live person every time! 866.438.4553.