Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Gantry from Huntington Beach, CA Comments

Gantry is looking to replace his old sound system, which recently died. He's seeing 3D soundbars, atmos soundbars, and more. What system should he get? Leo says you could buy a new center channel to replace the channel that is broken. Soundbars aren't as good as 5.1 Dolby surround systems. But if you don't want to rewire it, or get a new AV receiver, then a soundbar is a good alternative. Leo says that Vizio makes a great line of soundbars in all budgets. They are even Atmos capable with upward-firing speakers. 

Scott Wilkinson also likes the Pioneer M Series speakers if you want to continue with a home theater system. Leo says you'd be better off with Elac Speakers and a Denon AV receiver. The Elac Debut series speakers would be great.  

Watch Leonard from San Diego, CA Comments

Leonard has a Motorola Moto G7 with a 5,000 mAh battery. Leo says that'll last forever. But the G7 doesn't have NFC, and he needs that. Leo says you can't add NFC to the phone, but you could get an Android Wear Watch that supports NFC and you could pay for it that way. That would be the easy way. You just have to be sure the model you like supports Google Pay. The Wyze Band fitness watch supports Google Pay and it's only $25. Fossil makes several, as does Casio. The Fitbit Charge 4 as well.

Or just upgrade your Moto to a new model that supports NFC.

From the chatroom: you can also talk to your bank to get an NFC key fob that would do it. Lastly, you could get a credit card with NFC, and it would work the same way. But that won't be encrypted.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Will from Denver, CO Comments

Will is ready to buy a new Mac Mini with the M1 Apple Silicon processor. He wants to use it for photography. What monitor should he get? Leo says to avoid the Apple XDR display. It's just too damn expensive. The Mac Mini supports Thunderbolt and HDMI, so it can drive many models. Dell makes some really nice monitors for 200-300, but their UltraSharp line would be similar to Will's old iMac. You can get a 27" Dell UltraSharp for $359. 

Watch Jeff from Mumfordville, KY Comments

Jeff has a ViewSonic LED monitor, but recently the monitor has started hesitating waking up. It also flickers. Is that a computer or a monitor issue? Leo says it isn't unusual as a monitor that's HDMI driven goes through a "handshake" to determine the best resolution to display. But if it's a standard DVI or VGA connection, then the flickering could be caused by a bad cable or even power interference with the cable. Worst case, the monitor may be starting to fail. But that's unlikely. Start with the easy solution first and replace the cable. It could also be an issue with your video card. Try updating the drivers.

Watch Stan from Victorville, CA Comments

Stan is having issues with his home theater system subwoofer. No bass at all. Leo says that there are two ways to connect your subwoofer.  A single RCA jack or an LFE connection (for low frequency).

But it could also be a setting in Netflix. Make sure you have your Netflix app set for surround. Make sure the highest quality is also selected. Also, check the settings in your streaming box. 

But if you're using the audio return channel (ARC) on your TV, try using optical out to your AVR. That could give you the full 5.1 surround sound. It should tell you in your AV receiver. 

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Dennis from Escondido, CA Comments

Dennis' 2011 iMac is showing lines on a white screen. Leo says it could be a failed monitor, or even the cable that connects to your monitor has failed. The OS may have been corrupted as well. Try booting into recovery mode. CMD+R. That will bypass the loading of the OS and will allow you to reinstall the OS. You can also try target display mode. If the problem persists, the Mac needs replacing., because it'll cost too much to fix.

Watch Richard from South Texas Comments

Richard is a night sky photographer, and he uses photoshop to create time lapses. He would like to apply the same photo settings to thousands of images he has already taken. Is there a batch mode that can do that? The chatroom says that there is a tool called PixInsight (Windows, macOS X, Linux), which has scripting that can perform that task. There's also a handy color management tool. There's also LR TimeLapse.

Sony also has a deal with Capture One, which could be handy for Richard since he's using a Sony A7RIV camera.

Watch Joe from Phoenix, AZ Comments

Joe wants to know if there's a "ding" response when he uses google assistant on his Google Pixel 4. Leo says that inside the accessibility settings, there is. Here's how.

It's possible the feature may have been turned off in a recent update since Reddit is filled with posts complaining it's disappeared.

Watch Terry from Valley Center, CA Comments

Terry recently switched from Dish to DirecTV. But when he uses his wireless headphones, they won't work when he streams Netflix from the TV. He's got them connected to his TV audio out jack and a splitter/converter. The soundbar works via optical, and Leo thinks that the optical is now cutting off the TV output jack. Leo says that you need a splitter that will split optical (which is light). Terry's splitter is likely failing.

The chatroom thinks that what has happened is that the TV is sending a Dolby encoded signal to his headphones, rather than PCM. Terry may need a Dolby converter or change the settings to PCM when he uses the headphones.