adapters

Why can't I connect my iPhone to my Roku?

Roku Ultra

Episode 1494

Christian from Oconomowoc, WI

Christian recently bought a Lightning to HDMI cable to connect his phone to his Roku, but it doesn't work with Hulu. It only plays the sound, not the picture. Leo says it sounds like it isn't HDCP compliant. Copy Protection is probably what he's running up against. Hulu's site says it doesn't support it. There may be a workaround, though. He should try scrubbing through the timeline. According to the chatroom, 9/10 times it will bring the video back. Another solution is to log out and log back in. But if he has a Roku device, why not just use the Roku app?

How can I use my Apple lightning headphones with a regular headphone jack?

Apple EarPods

Episode 1477

Steve from Birmingham, AL

Steve wants to use his lightning headphones into a regular headphone jack. Leo says he probably won't be able to do that since the Lightning connector is proprietary. Those Lightning headphones are for one thing only — for use with the iPhone. Walmart does sell a female-to-male Lightning adapter, and there's one that actually comes with the Apple Pencil as well. Leo's not sure that this would actually work, though. It may be easier to just buy a cheap pair of earbuds that would have the proper connector.

Will USB become obsolete?

Transcend JetFlash 790 USB 3.0 Flash Drive

Episode 1335

Rowan from San Bernardino, CA

Rowan wonders if USB thumb drives are becoming obsolete like so many other data drives before it. Leo says that no format will last forever, but there's still plenty of life left in USB. We need to keep an eye on how technology progresses and transfer the data over when the time comes, though. Rowan will likely be able to get an adapter for USB-C, which is the current standard. The other thing he can do is use an open source backup, like TAR, which will make the backup easily transferrable. The best way is to go into the cloud, though. He should have both.

Can I use a Chromebook with an ethernet connection?

BobJGear USB to RJ45

Episode 1317

Warren from Pennsylvania

Warren is thinking about buying a Chromebook now that it can run Android apps. He needs to be able to connect via ethernet, though. Leo says Warren can get an ethernet adapter as long as it's compatible, and all USB to ethernet adapters are compatible with the Chromebook. BobJGear USB to RJ45 adapter is a good one and it's under $20. What about security? Leo says that Chromebooks are more secure than any other computer out there.

What power adapters do I need for traveling overseas?

Ckitze USA to Europe Travel Power Plug Adapter

Episode 1261

Patrick from Fallbrook, CA

Patrick is going to be traveling to Ireland and he wants to know how to adapt to the power over there with his technology. Leo says that there are adapters that he can buy which fit into the outlets in that region. They're pretty cheap. But the other part of the story is voltage. The US uses 110 volts, while the rest of the world uses 220 or 240 volts. That's twice the amount. So there is a risk of frying it. Most of his chargers are 120-240 volts. Patrick should look on his AC adapter, as it should say so on it. If it doesn't, Leo says he shouldn't bring it.

How can I plug an LCD TV into an old cable box?

Component cables

Episode 1240

Joey from Laguna beach, CA

Joey inherited an LCD TV and he needs an adapter to plug in from his old coax cable box. Leo says that coax is an analog connector designed largely for over the air antennas, rather than digital, which is what HDMI or DVI is. Leo says it's going to cost Joey more to get a Coax to DVI converter than it would just to get a new cable box. Then he can get an inexpensive HDMI to DVI adapter. He'll also need a separate sound cable. Since Joey also has component, another option is to go from Component to DVI. That's an inexpensive option as well. But then he could end up with sync issues.

How can I output the video from my iOS device to my car?

HDMI to Composite Converter

Episode 1188

Frank from Richboro, PA

Frank wants to output the video from his new iOS device to his car. His car video system requires a composite connection. He says there used to be an adapter that would work with the 30-pin connectors on older iOS devices, but he hasn't found anything that works with Apple's new Lightning connector. Leo says he may have to use two adapters to go from Lightning to HDMI, and then buy a $10 dongle that will convert HDMI to composite.

What electrical adapters will I need overseas?

Episode 1162

John from Austin, TX

John traveled to the UK and he got an inverter that nearly bricked his laptop. Leo says that most of the time laptops don't need a transformer because they're built for a world market. Just a plug converter is needed, or a travel adapter. They're only about $10, even at the airport. He should always look in the fine print of the device. It'll tell him the voltage it can handle.

How can I get my two external monitors to work with my MacBook Pro?

Apple MacBook Pro

Episode 1128

Jerry from Phoenix AZ

Jerry has a MacBook Pro and bought a pair off brand Cinema displays. But the MacBook Pro can't power them. Leo says that MiniDisplay port will do it. But Apple has replaced that with Thunderbolt 2. He'll just need the right cable. Most monitors don't have Thunderbolt. DVI ports are a possibility, but he'll need an adapter to handle it. Monoprice is a good place to look.