hardware

How hot should my laptop get while gaming?

Alienware laptop

Episode 1142

Ivan from Santa Nella, CA

Ivan is a hardcore gamer and he uses an Alienware laptop. But his laptop has been getting up past 200 degrees. Leo says that's not a good thing. It's normal for a laptop to heat up with a lot of hard core use, but not that much. Leo suspects that Ivan's GPU fan isn't working. It could also be that the thermal paste wasn't applied correctly. Leo advises going back to the store with it and having them fix the issue.

What hardware and software can I use for screencasting on videos?

Rode DeadCat Wind Muff

Episode 1122

Danny from New Jersey

Danny wants to make videos for his kids at school who have problems learning. He got a podcaster kit and he's looking for a screen to go in front of the microphone. Leo says it's called a "Dead Cat." There's also a circular screen called a "pop screen" and Leo uses the BSW REPOP Pop Filter. But that's for a directional microphone. For omnidirectional microphones, it's called a Dead Cat.

What's slowing down my computer while rendering?

CPU

Episode 1110

Tim from Cape Cod, CA

Tim uses Adobe Premiere CS6 for editing video and wants to decrease his rendering times. Leo says Tim needs to figure out what the weak link is in the chain that's causing the bottle neck, and it could either be the processor, the graphics processor, the RAM, or the hard drive. Boosting his video card will help. Since he's boosted his RAM and installed an SSD, Leo has a hunch it's the graphics processor. If it's slowing down while encoding, that could point to the CPU.

The Giz Wiz and Inside MAD

Dick DeBartolo

Episode 1107

Dickie D is back and Leo is very thrilled to be featured in the October 2014 issue of Mad Magazine along with Lisa and a bunch of TWiT Staffers! This week's gadget is the Champ Survival Sidekick is an 8-in-1 Multi-tool and flashlight. In a single device that looks like a flashlight you’ll have these eight emergency tools ready when you need them: Glass breaker and seatbelt cutter. Hand crank and a USB connector for emergency mobile device charging. A 3 LED flashlight.

Dick DeBartolo, The Giz Wiz

Episode 1101

Do you remember those original brick like cell phones from the 80s? Well someone has created a bluetooth phone headset that looks like one that works with your iPhone. It's called The Brick. It's a retro looking cell phone looking bluetooth handset that will let you go back into time and fool your friends. You can access smartphone contacts, music and call log via Bluetooth. The Brick also has SD card slot so you can play music right on built in speaker. Built-in also is the classic game of Snake and even an FM radio. But wait, there's more. There's even a flashlight and back-lit keypad.

Should I get a Chromebook for a college student?

Acer Chromebook

Episode 1087

Jay from Malvane, KS

Jay wants to know if a Chromebook is a good option for kids. Leo says absolutely. Great for school work because Google docs is all online. But will it be good for a college student or should he get a low spec MacBook Air? Leo says he can get great deals for students with 10% off, plus Apple just dropped the price $100. So a MacBook Air is ideal for a college student.

What's a good low cost laptop with a DVD burner?

Dell Inspiron

Episode 1085

Jeffrey from Twin Peaks, CA

Jeffrey wants to buy a new computer that has a DVD burner for around $500. Leo says that the trend has been away from incorporating CD/DVDs into laptops because they want to make them lighter and smaller.

Leo says that a desktop replacement is what Jeffrey should be looking at, and a low end computer is really a false economy. But at that price, Jeffrey should look at the Dell Inspiron. They cost $400 to $800, and Dell sells them with Windows 7. Of course, he can always get an external burner. That way he can connect it when he needs it.

Dick DeBartolo, The Giz Wiz

Universal Car Remote

Episode 1081

The Giz Wiz is back with the Universal Car Remote. It'll sell for $49.95. The iKeyless Universal Car Remote is customer programmable for 100% of the vehicles it’s compatible with. It works on 1,080 vehicle models equipped with a factory keyless entry system manufactured between 1995 and 2014. “Insert the key into the ignition. Turn it from off to ACC eight times. Then, within 20 seconds push any button on the Universal Car Remote.