When troubleshooting connected hardware tech, you should test out which component is causing the problem before hastily buying a whole new system. Try replacing parts like the cables before moving on to monitors, receivers, computers, etc. If the problem can be identified as the cable/wires, it will be a relief to your wallet. As a rule of thumb: Start with the cheap stuff, then work your way on up to the more expensive items if necessary.
Richard's optical speakers are suddenly malfunctioning with only one speaker working. Leo says if the wires are connected, then it could be a bad speaker wire. They can fail. The speaker can also fail. Do the easy thing first ... replace the wires. Also, try using a different device like a turntable. That will eliminate the receiver. Also, change the connections from left to right. If the other speaker goes out and the current speaker has sound again, then the AV receiver may be going out.
Richard's wife is having problems with the iPad intermittently freezing up as she's typing on the screen. It'll be unresponsive for a while and then catch up. But the Genius Bar can't find anything wrong with it. Leo says that intermittent problems are difficult to diagnose. Turn it all the way off. Then power it back on. That will reboot it.
David has an Android phone and he's using the PetCube app to watch his pets remotely. But he's having issues getting the signal via wifi. It's really slow. Leo says that he doesn't normally have WiFi peer-to-peer notifications. It has to go up to PetCube's server first, and then to the phone. Look in the notifications setup to see if the push notifications are being allowed to wake up the phone. Leo suspects that the PetCube server is probably running really slow.
Ryan's mom had an old 2013 Macbook that the battery is starting to swell. Leo says that Apple will replace it for a price. About $129. She can also do it through iFixit. It's a pretty easy fix. And she'll save money since the battery itself is really only around $60. But if it's a retina Macbook, it's been glued in and so she can't do it.
Leo is still having issues with HDCP copy protection. He managed to figure out how to strip the HDCP with a splitter. Leo says that's a fortunate secret side benefit. Many of these converter splitters have that feature. Mostly from China.
Frank's laptop screen has color streaks that go away over time. Leo says that's likely an indication of a failing ribbon cable. But it may also be a cold solder that has to warm up before there's a solid connection. It's probably on the motherboard, where the video card is. One way to test is to power down, and let it cool down. Then hold down the D key before powering up. If he can see the streaks again, then it's definitely a hardware issue. Fortunately, if it's the ribbon cable, it's a cheap fix.
Ed is having problems where the volume in his Vizio soundbar changes audio as he changes the channel. Leo says it sounds like the IR from the Verizon FIOS box is merging the two commands and passing a volume command to the soundbar. There are only so many IR codes, so it's possible the confusion is causing it.
Seraphine is suddenly suffering from no WiFi. She was "borrowing a cup" from a neighbor, but now she can't get it. Leo says it's possible that the modem has died and you need another. Or you have a bad cable. It's also possible that the WiFI router is bad. If it's a router/modem combo, even more so. The lights on your modem mean something, and if you look at the manual, it'll tell you if there's something wrong. Routers can also wear out. It may be time to replace it.
Brian has had an issue with an alarm system for two years that drives him nuts. They are supposed to get push notifications in the app, but often they don't. Or one person gets them, and one doesn't. Leo says that iOS can be very aggressive at shutting down background apps. Notifications can also be dialed up and down with sensitivity to not get a notification every 10 seconds when the wind blows. So it could be dialed down too far. If you haven't visited the app in a while, it may just be shut off. Or the company's servers may be down. There's a lot of points of failure there.