Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Roseanne from Los Angeles, CA Comments

Roseanne doesn't watch TV and her new iMac doesn't have an optical disc player in it. She'd like to watch both her DVDs and her VHS tapes. Leo says that DVDs are just the VHS tapes of today. The real trends are towards streaming online via services like Netflix and Hulu+.

Leo says that Roseanne can get a DVD player really cheap and then connect it directly to her TV. Roseanne says her TV doesn't have the right connections for the DVD player. Leo says to look for a component connection (Red, Green, and Blue). The other option is composite (yellow, red, white), but Rosanne says the TV doesn't see it. Leo says to go into the input selection and select it. She wants to get rid of the TV because it's too big, though. Leo suggests just getting a computer monitor. Many can handle both these days.

Leo says that a Roku Box is a good idea, and then she can sign up for Netflix for $8 a month.

Watch Richard from Coventry, RI Comments

Leo says he isn't sure, but is surprised that it isn't required under the Americans with Disabilities Act. The chatroom says that there is a descriptive service that's like an audible closed captioning. Richard says he hasn't found a program that supports it, though. Leo says Richard needs a box that supports it and handles it directly.

Additionally, the AppleTV supports description in it's accessibility settings. There's also the Audio Description Project, which offers an audible program guide that is supported by some cable boxes like AT&T U-Verse. Leo also suggests contacting his cable provider and asking them to provide it and if they blow him off, file a complaint with the FCC.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Eric from Los Angeles, CA Comments

Eric's TV recently died and he's in the market for a new one. He's got a house that does have bright ambient light and would cause glare. Leo says that LCD is much better for rooms with that kind of lighting.

First of all, he should know that he cannot judge a TV on any showroom floor. They've set these TVs to a mode that is very bright and will appeal to people, but it's not how he'd want to watch it at home.

Don't be fooled by LED - LEDs are LCDs and they're the current state of the art. Backlit LEDs with local area dimming is a feature he'll want to look for because they give deeper colors.

One negative about LCD is the response time. In older CRT televisions, and even newer plasmas, the response time is effectively 0. In LCDs, it's between 4 and 9 milliseconds. The effect of that is action being slightly blurred. They've tried to improve this by increasing the TV refresh rate. Refresh rates are normally 60hz, but they'll double it to 120 or even 240hz. The problem is, there's no more information than there was with 60hz, so they'll interpolate (make up) the frames in between. In Leo's opinion, this gives the video a "plastic" look, so he turns that off anyway.

As far as size is concerned, he'll want a bigger TV than he probably thinks. The size of his room and how far back he'll be sitting will help determine the size, but he'll probably want to go no smaller than 42". If he's 7-8ft away, he should ideally get a 55". Sitting back a little farther he might want to get 65".

Should he get expensive cables? Leo says no. Digital is digital. Go to MonoPrice.com and he can get them for cheap. They'll be just as good, so he shouldn't fall for the upsell.

Brand names to look for include:

  • Sharp
  • Samsung.
  • Vizio
  • If he's on a budget, this is a good second-tier brand that would probably give him the most bang for his buck.

Watch Chris from Texarkana, TX Comments

Leo says it's bizarre. He suggests installing from an original official Microsoft CD. It's likely that the ISO copy he's been using has gone bad, and only going to the original source will fix the issue. The official ISO download links can be found here.

Watch Laura from West Hills, CA Comments

Leo says Laura needs a camera that accepts external audio like the Canon Vixia. She can then plug the mic in. If Laura needs wireless, then the price goes up, and cheap wireless is a bad idea. Leo uses Lectrosonics for wireless microphones. They're very pricey ($1000 per mic), plus the receivers, plus the mics.

One way around this cost is to avoid wireless altogether and use a boom mic. She'll need to add someone to her crew, but that's OK if it's a friend or volunteer (like Laura's husband). She'll also need a shotgun mic with a "dead cat" that cuts wind noise. She can build one really cheap using this website - The Frugal Filmmaker. To try it out, she can go to AudioRents.com and rent a mic and boom pole. They're about $20 a day.

Check out Laura's Podcast called DoggieDish!

Watch Bob from Florence, AZ Comments

Bob has an iPod Touch connected to Ford Sync via USB. When he stops the car, he loses his place in the podcast he's listening to. Leo says iTunes and the iPod is set up so that if it stops in the middle of a song, it would start over, but if it's an audiobook or podcast, it would start where it left off. It does this based on hidden data in the file to tell the iPod what type of file it is.

Leo advises going into iTunes and under podcasts, look in the settings to tag that file as a podcast. He should select all his podcasts, then "get info". Under the options tab, in Media Kind - select "Podcast". Or "Audio Book" for audio books. Then check "remember playback position." Also make sure the iPod has the latest firmware.

Watch Richard from Irvine, CA Comments

Richard needs a PCI-e card and wants to know who has the best one because the prices are so vast. He's also wondering what "superspeed USB 3.0" is.

Leo says a PCI-e slot is faster and if he has that on his motherboard, that's the type to choose. As far as brand goes, Leo says they're pretty much all the same and are probably using the same components. A USB 3 card won't do him much good unless his devices are USB 3 supported. Luke in the chatroom bought a cheap card from eBay and says it works fine. He should just be sure he has the drivers for it.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Paul from El Paso, TX Comments

When Paul is staying at a hotel, he sees other people's libraries when he's on WiFi. Leo says what Paul is seeing is everyone else that's within range of him that's on the same WiFi network. It's a security issue if people aren't aware they're computers are wide open on the network.

Paul has also noticed he uses twice as much bandwidth using LTE. What good is having all that speed when he has a restrictive bandwidth cap that he blazes through? Leo says it is a conundrum. But often, an "unlimited" plan becomes limited precisely because more data is being used. AT&T grandfathers people in, but it's a limited offer. The others force users into bandwidth caps. He could pay for the phone unsubsidized and get unlimited. If he's on contract, he's out of luck, unless he calls the company and asks for the retention expert and tells them he's ready to leave over the bandwidth caps.

Watch Dave from Tustin, CA Comments

Leo says if the head unit in the car has bluetooth, that would be the easiest way. Dave says his car does not have bluetooth, though.

Another possibility is to connect the phone via USB instead. Or he could try getting an adapter, like this one from Belkin, to go from the iPod 30 pin connector to USB.

If he has auxiliary in, he could connect from his phone using an 1/8th cable. There's also this Belkin bluetooth car kit that would allow him to connect his phone to the car with bluetooth. If he did this, he wouldn't get the ability to control his phone through the car stereo interface.

He also could get an FM transmitter for the phone that would be picked up with the car radio. If he has a cassette player in the car, the cassette adapters actually work really well too.

Watch Stan from Rialto, CA Comments

Stan has an HP all-in-one printer that he wants to print to from his Samsung Galaxy SIII via Google Cloud Print. When he prints images, it comes out in black and white, not color. Leo says to make sure the printer isn't defaulting to black and white. He can check in printer settings for that.

Web8880 in the chatroom says that it's a known bug. Color may be an advanced option in Chrome's settings.

Watch Robert from Maui, Hawaii Comments

Robert has two 300GB Western Digital raptor drives in a RAID 0 configuration (which Leo calls "scary RAID" because when if one drive dies, everything is lost). He's upgrading to Intel drives, but the software doesn't recognize the RAID. Leo says it should. RAID is something that's configured in BIOS. Leo says if it's not working, then don't use Intel's software, just do a simple copy of the data.

Watch JR from Rancho Cucamonga Comments

Jay is trying to do some live video streaming with a limited signal 4G using the Livestream Broadcaster, and is wondering if a signal amplifier would help. Leo says not really. He needs high speed signal in the area. Leo used to use the Live U backpack that used 8 different cards to bond together and get a better signal by marrying multiple signals, but it wasn't cheap.

We're in the early days of live internet broadcasting and we're working on the cheap, without millions in satellite trucks. Streaming high quality bandwidth isn't easy or cheap. He can mess with the quality to lower it, but at the end of the day, if he can't do it live, he can't do it live. Maybe he could look into connecting to nearby WiFi.

JR's podcast is called KartRacerTV.

Watch Hugh from Los Angeles, CA Comments

Hugh overheard Leo talking about an escalator to nowhere. What is that? Leo says he's been addicted to the Simpson's Tapped Out on the iPad. It's free, but to get a nice village going, game players have to make in-app purchases and Leo has built up quite a community of Springfield. It's fun.