Due partly to the Covid pandemic and partly due to a recent fire at a factory in Japan, there is a serious chip shortage now, causing car manufacturers to stop production and prices to rise on high-end tech like video cards and other devices. Coupled with how high the price is now on bitcoin that is prompting scalpers to buy up video cards for bitcoin mining, it's making it really hard for the rest of us to get Playstation 5s, video cards, and other devices.
Franklin wants to know what CUDA is in a video card and can he use it with Linux? Leo says that CUDA is a performance codec that will help higher resolution video perform at various frame rates and resolutions. The key is to make sure he's using the proprietary NVIDIA drivers for the best results. If he's using Linux, though, it's possible he won't get CUDA support, especially with Linux drivers. He could also make sure that he has OpenCL drivers as well.
CryptoCurrency continues to rise in value as more people seek to acquire it and use it to pay for goods and services. Currently, BitCoin's value is over $55,000 as of 2/21. Leo says that bitcoin miners will only be able to generate 21 million bitcoin before it comes to an end as far as BitCoin is concerned. And the closer users get to that amount, the harder it will be to mine bitcoin, which is achieved by solving complicated mathematical problems. But that isn't stopping bitcoin miners from trying.
Jake has transitioned to a home office for his work. He has a three monitor setup for his laptop and docking station. He has another older computer that can only drive two of the monitors because it doesn't use USB-C. So he added a USB-C card. Still two monitors only. Leo says that Jake's video card is probably too old to drive all three video monitors. Are there any discreet graphics cards that can handle USB-C? Type-C can be USB 3.1 or Thunderbolt 3. Looks the same. So it can be confusing.
Stan is having a computer display issue. He has issues when he plays video. But when he uses Linux remotely, he has no issue. But when he's on Linux directly, he has an issue. Leo suspects that there's an issue with the video card. Maybe an incompatible video driver. You could remove the driver, and reinstall it. Or, get an inexpensive video card and see if it fixes the problem. Leo says that using a different flavor of Linux, like PopOS could also solve it.
Owen wants to know how he can protect his pro-level cameras. Leo says you can 1) never use the branded straps that come with the camera 2) buy a cheap leather case and wear it around your neck 3) place electrical tape on the white logos to make it harder to see what brand your camera is.
John has a Radeon graphics card and he wants to know if he can use three monitors running it? Leo says that most modern video cards can handle four or more, so it's not too much a stretch to do three. Look it up in your manual and just try it in the end.
Larry is a gamer and got a new video card that supports RayTracing. He put it in his computer but it's lagging terribly. On top of that, he's now getting "green sparkles" everywhere. Is his machine too old? Leo says it shouldn't be too old at all, it's likely just a bad card. Green artifacts are usually an indication of a bad video card, so Larry should send it back for a refund or replacement. The GTX 1070 is better matched to his computer anyway.
Roy has a high resolution 4K monitor, but his friends say if he adds a second video card, it could give him better resolution. Is that true? Leo says no. A newer one with more RAM could help, but if he's driving the monitor at its full resolution, then it's not going to get any better than that. A second video card would give him the ability to add more monitors, though.
Mike has an HP Pavilion G Series laptop and the screen has gone black. Is the screen dead? Leo says that it could be. In laptops, it's often a frayed ribbon connector that has obstructed the video signal. Mike should try hooking it up to an external monitor to see if he can see it. If he can, then he'll know the computer is OK but the screen has either died or the ribbon cable has broken. But if he can't see anything with the external monitor, then it's probably the video card that has died or the motherboard has failed.