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Episode 892 July 15, 2012

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Audience Questions

Audience QuestionsHour 1

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Don from Dana Point, CA Comments

Don will need an i7 processor, with at least 8GB of RAM and plenty of storage. Leo thinks that he should buy instead of build. Building is great for hobbyists, but it's better to "spec out" a machine at Dell or Apple. Then if he has issues with his computer, he'll be able to get support.

Having a Solid State Drive (SSD) as his master boot drive with an additional 2TB drive for storage would be best. He should also get a large monitor, or if he can afford it, two side-by-side 27" monitors since screen real-estate will be important for what he wants to do.

Watch David from Mission Viejo, CA Comments

David called in and got very geeky about the electronics behind speakers in reference to another caller to the show Saturday. All jargon aside, Leo wanted to know if a low impedance speaker is better than a high impedance one. David said low impedance speakers around 4 Ohms are used mostly in car stereos because there isn't as much voltage to drive them. Home stereos can have higher impedance speakers simply because there's more power available.

Watch Sandy from Huntington Beach, CA Comments

Generally, for most people, the iPhone is the right choice. Sandy was at a Verizon store, and they recommended she get a Lucid by LG. Leo says not to get that. It's a junky Android smartphone, and if she's going to get Android, she should look at the Samsung Galaxy S III or the HTC One.

Some advantages to the Galaxy S III include a larger screen, 4G through Verizon, and a replaceable battery. It also is thinner and lighter, and Android would allow her to make more adjustments and customizations to the phone such as the on-screen keyboard. It is a personal decision and Leo recommends going into the store and playing with both to see which one Sandy prefers.

For her first smartphone, however, an iPhone might be a better choice. And If she can wait until September or October, a new iPhone is likely to be released.

Watch Mark from Los Angeles, CA Comments

No, there isn't. Many accents, like Scottish, give Siri a hard time. Leo says the UK Siri may have a better time picking up his accent. But at the end of the day, Siri is far from perfect. In fact, it's only accurate about 62% of the time.

Audience QuestionsHour 2

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Tom from Stamford, CN Comments

Leo says to focus on areas he has interest, passion, and expertise. Content is king and making the best possible show is the best way to promote yourself. Once his show has quality content, he could try to get his show carried by a site like Machinima, which is the site his brother's content is on. It's important to understand that even the most popular internet celebrities aren't really making that much money. He should be doing it because he loves it, it's fun, and it's helping him achieve his goals.

In promoting the show and getting the word out, he should be active in the community he's podcasting about. Go to forums and contribute, but not spam them. He could put a link to his podcast in his signature, for example.

Ultimately in Tom's case, a bigger audience isn't what he necessarily should be shooting for. In new media, it's more important to build an active community than an audience.

Watch Klein from Columbus, IN Comments

A good backup strategy, such as Peter Krog's 3-2-1 backup is best. The idea is three copies of everything using two different kinds of media and one should be off-site. Klein mentioned Crashplan which is a good service. Leo also recommends Carbonite as a simple and reliable way to backup off-site. These solutions are designed to be easy and automatic. (Disclaimer: Carbonite is a sponsor).

Watch Mark from Tarzana, CA Comments

First he should find out what the school is using for video editing software. It's probably Final Cut Pro, but there's a chance they could be based on Adobe Premiere. If it is Final Cut Pro, then the 15" Macbook Pro is a great choice.

Leo suggests getting the 2.6 Ghz Core i7 15" Macbook Pro with the 256GB Solid State Drive, higher-res display, and perhaps a 27" external monitor. The retina display Macbook Pro probably wouldn't be enough of a difference from the regular Macbook Pro, especially if he's already spending more money on an external drive and monitor.

Mark also had been looking at the LaCie 6TB 2big Thunderbolt Series RAID hard drive for $749.95 at the Apple Store. Leo thinks this is a very good decision, as USB drives are too slow for video recording and editing. He might even want to get two of them so he can be backing everything up as well.

Leo would also look into getting a fast USB thumb drive. Leo has the Kingston Hyper X thumb drive. This would be big enough to transfer video files from his dorm to class. It would be much easier to bring around than the big external drive.

Watch Tom from Orange, CA Comments

Epson makes excellent and affordable business class projectors. The P90 was the one that he recently got for a local school.

Audience QuestionsHour 3

Hour 1 Hour 2 Hour 3
Watch Walter from Huntington, WV Comments

Since Walter doesn't have DVD menus and extra features to contend with, he can just rip the DVD to his hard drive and re-author a disc from that. There's a program called DVD Shrink which can put commercial DVDs on his hard drive so he could both create a new DVD of the content and play it from his hard drive. Leo doesn't think he would need this though.

Leo recommends a free program called Handbrake. If he wants to rip commercial DVDs as well, he'll need to install VideoLan/VLC Media Player to rip DVDs. Leo doesn't think he'll be burning any more DVDs, and will probably just watch the videos from his computer from now on. Since Handbrake will encode it in MPEG4 for best playback on the computer, if he does want to burn a DVD, he'll have to re-transcode it to MPEG2 which will degrade quality slightly.

If he wants to burn a DVD and preserve full quality, he can make an ISO image of the DVD and he'll get everything without having to transcode it. CloneDVD will do that.

Watch Steve from Indianapolis, IN Comments

Every computer is always in a transitional period, so that's just silly. An iPad will not edit RAW photo files, which Steve wants to do. So the MacBook Pro is a better choice.

Steve has been looking at the refurbished models which are a little cheaper, and there are some good deals there. Apple has a very good refurb store. He should make sure to buy from original manufacturer because then he'll get a full warranty on it too.

Watch Kevin from Trinidad Comments

Kevin uses the very versatile and free VLC Player to play videos from his computer, and he wants to play that content on his TV. He could always connect his computer to his TV using HDMI, but Kevin wants to do it wirelessly. He's looking for an equivalent to Apple TV.

Apple uses something called "AirPlay" which is really just a slightly modified and rebranded DLNA (Digital Living Network Alliance). This is a standard created by the DLNA Trade Organization for how consumer electronics can "talk" to televisions. If he has a DLNA compatible notebook, and a DLNA compatible TV, then it's possible to select the TV in his media player to stream the video. But this capability needs to be built in.

He could get a DLNA set top box. A Boxee Box, Google TV, or Western Digital TV Live (which is probably the best DLNA device). The next thing is to get DLNA Media Server software for his Windows computer. TV Mobili is a free, open-source DLNA solution.

Watch Kevin from Trinidad Comments

Drobo is different from a typical external hard drive because it combines multiple hard disks into a single giant USB, FireWire or eSATA drive. These are more complex and more expensive, however. Leo thinks most people would be fine with a simple external hard drive, especially since they are available in the 1, 2, or even 3TB range.

The LaCie 2big 6TB Thunderbolt Series Hard Drive that a caller brought up last hour is pretty impressive if he needs a lot of storage.

Watch Robert from Springfield, MO Comments

Robert's nephew has a friend that installed Windows 7 Ultimate on his computer, and he's concerned it may not be legal. Leo says this friend probably has a TechNet subscription, and while they may have registered the copy of Windows successfully, his friend violated Microsoft's Terms of Service by installing it.

Robert's been having problems getting Windows to install Service Pack 1, however. He can go into updates and choose Network or System Adminstrator update. It'll show all the hotfixes as downloads and then he can try to download and install them manually.

Watch Steven from Bakersfield, CA Comments

It doesn't matter, the sound will be the same either way because they're both digital. He'll just want to be sure he's getting the Dolby 5.1 signal into the sound bar properly.

Watch Casey from Lakeport, CA Comments

There's a switch that goes from AF/MF (Auto Focus/Manual Focus). She should make sure it's in auto focus, and then press the shutter button halfway down and it should focus. If it isn't, then she should put the camera in Manual Focus and try turning the focus ring. Since it still isn't focusing, Leo thinks the lens is damaged. It's probably still under warranty, though.

Watch Pete from San Antonio, TX Comments

Since live TV over the internet is still quite new, there are a lot of points where things can go wrong. It could be on TWiT's end, or it could be a problem with his internet speed. Try restarting the app. But if it persists, then it's likely on Leo's end with server issues. Check out the chatroom for help.