About steve

steve has been a member since August 23rd 2011, and has created 6397 posts from scratch.

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Your Questions About Asus Mini Hdmi To Vga

Ruth asks…

Good laptops with a gaming/work mix?

I’m looking for a laptop that I can take to college and use to write papers and other work-related tasks, but I also want one that can be used for gaming. I’d like one that’d be able to run games like Starcraft 2 and Empire: Total War. Also, one preferably under $1,000. Any ideas?

steve answers:

I find that the best gaming laptop you can get right now is the ASUS Republic of Gamers G51JX-X3 15.6-Inch Gaming Laptop (Blue) because of its high end graphics card and it has an i5. It also has a powerful audio system. I’m using it now and i can’t find a game I can’t run on all high details.

Specifications:# Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit)
# Display: 15.6-inch Full HD LED-backlit Widescreen (1920 x 1080)
# CPU: Intel Core i5-430M processor 2.26 GHz with Turbo Boost up to 2.53 GHz
# Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTS 360M 1GB GDDR5 VRAM
# Wireless: 802.11 b/g/n (draft 2.4GHz n) with Bluetooth v2.1 +EDR
# LAN: 10/100/1000 Mbps Ethernet
# Memory: 4GB DDR3-1066 RAM, 2 x SODIMM Sockets (up to 8GB)
# Storage: 500GB 7,200RPM hard drive
# Optical Drive: DVD Super Multi Double Layer Drive
# Camera: 2.0 Megapixel
# Speakers: Altec Lansing speakers
# Microphone Digital Array Microphones
# Card Reader: 1 x 8-in-1 card reader (MMC/SD/Mini-SD/XD/Memory stick/MS Pro/MS-Duo/MS-Pro Duo)
# Input/Output: 1 x Mic-in, 1 x Headphone-out, 1 x VGA port/Mini D-Sub 15-pin for external monitor, 4 x USB 2.0 ports, 1 x IEEE 1394 port, 1 x RJ45 LAN Jack for LAN insert, 1 x HDMI, 1 x eSATA, 1 x Express Card 34/54
# Battery Pack: 6 cell
# Dimensions: 14.8 x 10.4 x 1.4~1.6 inches (WxDxH)
# Approximate Weight: 7.27 pounds (with 6 cell battery,1xHDD)
# Color: Blue

Buy this on amazon for the best deal:


Also check out at Ebay

Chris asks…


Hi guys, I’ve been looking for a good, thin ultrabook laptop
I prefer Windows 8 because I already have a macbook pro…
Zenbook Prime, Acer Aspire s7, and Samsung series 9 are on the top of my list.. but I still can’t decide.

I like a laptop that is very easy to carry around work… so I would love it if its really thin and light..

money isn’t an issue..

5 stars!

steve answers:

At 1.1kg and heaps of performance the Zenbook should definitely be a favourite. Specs for it are listed below.

ASUS UX21E-KX013X – 11.6″ / i5-2467M / 4GB / 256GB SSD / W7P

ASUS UX21E-KX013X Zenbook
Processor & Cache Memory: Intel® Core i5 2467M 1.6Ghz / 3M
Operating System: Genuine Windows® 7 Professional 64-bit
Chipset: Mobile Intel QS67 Express Chipset
Main Memory: 4GB DDR3 1333MHz, Onboard RAM
Display: 11.6″ LED HD (1366 x 768) – 450nits ZBD Guarantee
Video Graphics & Memory: Intel® HD Graphics 3000 Support DX10
Hard Drive: 256GB SATA III SSD
Optical Drive: N/A
Card Reader: SD
Video Camera: 0.3M
WLAN: Integrated 802.11 b/g/n; Built-in Bluetooth V4.0
Interface: 1x Headphone-out & Audio-in Combo Jack;1x micro HDMI;1x mini VGA; 1 x USB 3.0; 1 x USB 2.0
Audio: Bang & Olufsen Ice Power Audio
Keyboard: Seamless Chiclet Keyboard (No Numeric Pad)
Battery Pack & Life: 6 Cell / 4800mAh
Weight: 1.1 kg (with 6 cell battery)
Accessary: UX Series Leather Sleeve. USB to LAN. Mini VGA to D-Sub

Best of luck

Richard asks…

What gaming LAPTOP should I get for cheap!?

I want to get an Alienware computer but there are $1500! An acis gaming computer is not as good as a gaming computer but it works on games but not as well and it only costs around $800 to $1000. I have no clue what to do? ANYONE KNOW ANY GOOD GAMING LAPTOP COMPUTERS I CAN GET FOR A GOOD PRICE AND WHERE? please HELP!

steve answers:

I have a few that I would recommend and they have great price tags:

ASUS G73JW-XA1 Republic of Gamers 17.3-Inch Gaming Laptop (Black)
*Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit)
*Display: 17.3-inch LED-backlit Full HD display (1920 x 1080)
*Processor: Intel Core i7-740QM quad-core processor (1.73 GHz with Turbo Boost up to 2.93 GHz)
*Chipset: Intel HM55
*Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460M 1.5GB GDDR5 VRAM
*WLAN: 802.11 b/g/n (@ 2.4GHz), Bluetooth v2.1
*LAN: 10/100/1000 Mbps Ethernet
*Memory: 8GB DDR3 1333 MHz RAM, 4 x SODIMM (expandable to 8GB)
*Storage:750GB 7200RPM hard drive (1x HDD, 2x bays in total)
*Optical Drive: Super Multi DVD
*Camera: 2.0 megapixel
*Speakers: Altec Lansing speakers with EAX 4.0 sound
*Microphone: Digital Array Microphone
*Card Reader: 8-in-1 card reader (MMC/SD/Mini-SD/XD/Memory stick/MS Pro/MS-Duo/MS-Pro Duo)
Input / Output: 1 x Mic-in, 1 x Headphone-out, 1 x VGA port/Mini D-Sub 15-pin for external monitor, 3 x USB 2.0 ports, 1 x USB 3.0 port, 1 x Gigabit LAN, 1 x HDMI, 1 x Kensington Lock
*Battery: 8 cell
*Dimensions: 16.6 x 12.8 x 0.08 ~ 2.3 –inches
*Weight: 8 lbs (with 8 cell battery)
*Color: Black

Sharon asks…

what one is the best pc tablets?

hi there, what do you think on tablets? & the best ones? i i’m thinking of getting one & i’m not to sure what one! so if anyone has got an tablet let me know what you think is the best !

steve answers:

The best tablet computer depends on your needs…

If Windows OS compatibility and a digitizer pen are important to you, consider the ASUS Eee Slate or HP Slate 500. The biggest differences between those are that the ASUS has a better display (12.1 inch AFFS 1280×800) than the HP (8.9 inch TFT 1024×600) but is larger, heavier and more expensive. Both the Eee Slate and the HP Slate 500 are expensive, however: Eee Slate is ~$1,200; HP Slate 500, ~$770. A more economical Windows 7 tablet is the Acer Tab W500, which runs about $500 and includes a keyboard and dock.

At the low end, $249 can get you a Nook Color, which has an ereader orientation but is really a budget, 7-inch, camera-less, tablet running Android 2.2. Better than the color Nook is the new Kindle Fire ($199). If you can do without cameras, SD slots and 3G, the Kindle Fire offers great web browsing with its new (cloud-accelerated) Silk browser.

If high-end video recording is important to you, consider the LG G-Slate or BlackBerry Playbook, both of which can record at 1080p.

For overall value, the ASUS Eee Transformer (TF101) has surprisingly good specs for under $400: Android 3.1, 10.1 inch 1280×800 IPS (like iPad, but bigger and higher resolution) display, up to 9 hours of battery life (16 hourass if optional dock added), optional ability to dock with keyboard, 1 GHz Tegra 250 ARM CPU with 1 GB RAM, good array of ports (mini HDMI, SD, micro SD), preloaded Polaris Office 3.0 for editing documents (.doc), spreadsheets (.xls) and presentation (.ppt) files. Note, though, no 3G (however people report success in tethering it to smart phones).

The iPad (0.34 inches) and Galaxy Tab 10.1 (0.336 inches) are the thinnest. The Galaxy Tab 10.1 (1.25 lbs) is the lightest of the big-screen (greater than 9 inch) tablets.

IPad 2 Advantages:

IPads have a higher degree of fit-and-finish than the competition. Like iPhones vs other smart phones, iPods vs other MP3 players, or Macs vs PC’s, iPads are widely regarded as being more refined and polished than the competition. IPad also has a large and refined App Store (although Android Market is closing the gap).

IPad 2 Disadvantages:

1. No Flash.
2. No SD expansion; no HDMI port; no USB port.
3. ASUS Eee Transformer has a better display (10.1 inch, 1280×800, IPS vs 9.7 inch, 1024×768, IPS) for less money.
4. PlayBook and G-Slate have better rear camera video recording (1080p vs 720p).
5. PlayBook has much better front camera video recording (1080p vs VGA).
6. Almost all tablets have better camera resolution than iPad’s lousy 0.7 MP.

Motorola Xoom is heavier and thicker than the iPad 2 and Galaxy Tab 10.1. The Xoom’s advantage is that it has HDMI out and micro USB ports. It also has a 5MP rear camera compared to Tab’s 3MP. The Xoom has a front webcam and a 720p rear video camera; the Tab has only the 720p rear video camera.

Finally, if cellular service is important, you may want to consider which tablet your favorite carrier supports:

None:Eee Slate, Slate 500, TouchPad, Thrive, Eee Pad TF101, Iconia Tab A500, Archos 101, Archos 70, and NOOK Color
AT&T:iPad 2 and Galaxy Tab
Sprint:PlayBook and Galaxy Tab
T-Mobile:G-Slate, Streak 7, and Galaxy Tab
Verizon:Galaxy Tab 10.1, iPad 2, Xoom, and Galaxy Tab

Steven asks…

What do you think about ASUS G73JH-RCNX09?

I want a gaming laptop and heard about the ASUS G73 so what do you think about G73JH-RCNX09? is there a better version?

steve answers:

I find that the best gaming laptop you can get right now is the ASUS Republic of Gamers G51JX-X3 15.6-Inch Gaming Laptop (Blue) because of its high end graphics card and it has an i5. It also has a powerful audio system. I’m using it now and i can’t find a game I can’t run on all high details. It’ll only cost you a $1000 by the way.

Specifications:# Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit)
# Display: 15.6-inch Full HD LED-backlit Widescreen (1920 x 1080)
# CPU: Intel Core i5-430M processor 2.26 GHz with Turbo Boost up to 2.53 GHz
# Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTS 360M 1GB GDDR5 VRAM
# Wireless: 802.11 b/g/n (draft 2.4GHz n) with Bluetooth v2.1 +EDR
# LAN: 10/100/1000 Mbps Ethernet
# Memory: 4GB DDR3-1066 RAM, 2 x SODIMM Sockets (up to 8GB)
# Storage: 500GB 7,200RPM hard drive
# Optical Drive: DVD Super Multi Double Layer Drive
# Camera: 2.0 Megapixel
# Speakers: Altec Lansing speakers
# Microphone Digital Array Microphones
# Card Reader: 1 x 8-in-1 card reader (MMC/SD/Mini-SD/XD/Memory stick/MS Pro/MS-Duo/MS-Pro Duo)
# Input/Output: 1 x Mic-in, 1 x Headphone-out, 1 x VGA port/Mini D-Sub 15-pin for external monitor, 4 x USB 2.0 ports, 1 x IEEE 1394 port, 1 x RJ45 LAN Jack for LAN insert, 1 x HDMI, 1 x eSATA, 1 x Express Card 34/54
# Battery Pack: 6 cell
# Dimensions: 14.8 x 10.4 x 1.4~1.6 inches (WxDxH)
# Approximate Weight: 7.27 pounds (with 6 cell battery,1xHDD)
# Color: Blue

Buy this on amazon for the best deal:


Also check out at Ebay there are really good deals going

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Your Questions About Tablets With Usb Ports

Chris asks…

What tablet or ipad would be suitible for my needs?

I need an ipad/tablet that i can sync my iphone with it needs a usb port, i need to be able to write on it (type things like you can do with microsoft office). thats about it is there any ipads/tablets that have these features? thanks

steve answers:

Any apple tablet will fulfill your needs.

Mark asks…

Need help picking the best tablet for me?

I am looking for a tablet with 3g, standard USB port, HD front camera and runs on android honeycomb

Please refrain from writing any witty tablet jokes, thanks

steve answers:

Get the Toshiba thrive. Its $399 for 16 gigs. Using it right now. It has honeycomb. Has a full HDMI port. Full USB port. And a mini USB port. The backs are interchangeable. Has one camera facing you and ne facing outward. I don’t believe they are HD. The screen is LED HD. Gorilla glass for durable usage. You can buy 3G on it. It is early new and you can find them at Walmart and bstbuy. I am very pleased with the performance. It is very fast and it DOES have Flash player. Don’t splurge into getting the galaxy tab or the Motorola xoom. They are now reliable and do not have the same standard features. This tablet doubles as a webcam as well. Even though its not HD the picture quality off the camera is very good.

Michael asks…

is Ipad a failure? A big iPod touch?

I would like to know some opinions about this subject. Do you guys think the iPad is a failure, just being a big i pod touch? Personally, I bought a used macbook from an uncle, with the money I was going to buy an iPad with because I though this would be a tablet PC with USB ports and a disk slot atleast, with the ability to use it sort of like a laptop like for example saving and editing word documents directly, and many other things. I dont personally have one nor have I used one yet but it seems to be like its just a BIG iPod touch with NO OTHER REAL difference? So why would people pay hundreds more dollars for this when the only difference is size. I think Apple would have come out winning big time if they made USB ports or if it had some other thing resembling a laptop but it doesn’t. What are your opinions? I believe quickly other companies are going to make REAL tablet pc’s with the things mentioned above.

steve answers:

I believe so yes. I attend a lot of meetings and in the early days there would always be at least 2 innovators show up with ipads.
These days even the die hards are keeping them well hidden.
They seem to be just a way of Apple selling more apps.

I think other manufactures will produce more practical tablets which allow for peripheral connections and the Ipad in its current form will go the way of the Newton.

Linda asks…

Good Tablets for School?

I am starting High School soon and I figured I would get a tablet for notes, internet access, etc. Is there any tablets that are not crazy expensive that are good for school? Also with a full size USB port. Thanks!

steve answers:

IPad 3

Lizzie asks…

Boot XP from External 2.5″ USB HD?

I’ve got two hard drives, both with XP installed on them. When I put the hard drives into my tablet (Motion M1400) they will both boot individually fine. What I would like to do is put one of the HDs in an external case and have that be the dominate boot when starting up. I’ve modified the BIOS so it will place the external HD first, however when it starts to load windows it crashes to a blue screen (too quick to read what it says) then tries again. What would you recommend doing in order to get this to work?

The external case is only powered by two USB ports.
It works fine as an external storage device.

Thanks in advance,
**Added Info**
There is only room for one drive in the tablet. They were both labeled as C: drives when they were booted.

steve answers:

You probably have device letter conflicts.
Inside, the drives were C and D repsectively.
Now, when you boot off the external drive, it is treating it like a C drive, instead of a D drive.

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Your Questions About Lenovo Support

William asks…

lenovo xuri c466l drivers?

i have the above specified notebook with windows xp.. it happen to have some problems and being formatted but the 1 who formatted it didnt make a backup of the original drivers…and now it is missing some drivers including vga(graphics) driver which i need the most…did any one help where i can find it? i went to lenovo support and download home page but my machine model isnt there…i dont know maybe they uses another model which i dont understand yet…i need help..even if there is some kind of drivers that can fit ( i heard once about universal drivers) ..can anybody help me please!!

steve answers:

If your internet works you can download drivers usually from the products website. If you dont know exactly what your specific computer component products names are you can check your device manager. If you dont know how to do that just right click on My Computer then click the tab labelled Hardware and then the button named Device Manager and lastly press the + symbol beside Display adapters. If that doesnt work you might have to pop open the laptop yourself and have a look at your graphics card. Oh and dont take your computer back to the guy who reformatted it he is obviously an idiot. Since you said you already tried looking for your model on the laptop makers homepage you could have just missed it. I hate losing driver disks and searching high and low for them on websites. Well I tried. Good luck!

Mary asks…

Brand new Lenovo G570 Laptop Froze, need help…?

I was browsing my facebook and another website that had a popup or 2, then left my laptop for 10 minutes(the sites were still open), came back and the mouse had turned off, the laptop wasnt responding AT ALL. Ctrl, Alt, Delete didnt work, pushing the power button didnt work, using the touch pad didnt work, plugged in charger, did nothing, nothing worked, just froze from not doing anything really…. why would this happen??… its a brand new laptop only had it for 3 weeks, been well looked after 2, no bumps or anything. Would it be a software problem or something with the website? Once i rang lenovo support, they said 2 hold the power button for 5 seconds which worked and 2 take the battery out then put it in again. Laptop works fine for now, but is this bound 2 happen again and why would it of happened??… im concerned ts going 2 kark it and i wont be able 2 use my laptop so should i be or not be concerned?? thanks in advance.
I find it hard 2 believe that NOBODY can help me out or answeer this question… just unbelievable 2 be honest.

steve answers:

A computer freezes up or stop running for many reasons. Take a few deep breaths and take in this information. These ideas will assist you when your computer freezes, assuming it is a relatively minor problem and not a major repair.
Save your work often. If you are on the Internet often, save your work as a draft and come back to edit it. In case you are working on a document, click the save button every so often. This is a quick fix in the event your computer freezes.
Try the three finger salute by pressing Control-Alt-Delete to fix a stalled computer. This will bring up your Windows Task Manager. It will appear differently in different versions of Windows, just so you are aware. The computer will tell you which software is responding and which is not responding or freezes up continually.
Click end task on the software or applications that are prone to freezes and are not responding.
If you still cannot get Windows to respond, then simply touch Control-Alt-Delete again and shut the computer down. Or press and hold the button on the front of the computer to fix the freeze.
Pull the power cord out and leave it sit for ten minutes in the event it still freezes. This allows the computer to “reset” and fix itself when it freezes. Then push the power button and start the computer normally. Open software gradually.
Close applications, run only what you need to. Computer freezes happen when too many software programs running at the same time. Limit to two or three programs or Internet Windows at a time.
If your computer feels hot to the touch, it could be overheating. Use a blow-off duster by the fan area (for desktops) to fix this when the computer is off. If this does not fix it, take it in for professional evaluation, as your power supply, motherboard or other hardware may be in need of repair.
If the computer only freezes on a certain website, try not to visit that website or use a different browser. If a web browser continually freezes, try to uninstall and reinstall it. Alternatively, try to use another web browser that is has more speed and quality.
Check for viruses or spyware. These can cause an abundance of computer freezes. Run a spyware and antivirus check to fix this, and make sure security software is properly installed and updated on the computer at all times. See the resources section if you need additional help with this.
Your Internet connection could also be locking you up. Call the Internet Service provider technical support line for assistance. It may be an outside problem with the phone line or cable going into your home or office.

Sandy asks…

How are Lenovo computers? Are they better then Dell?

I’m looking for a new Desktop. I need one that I can upgrade in time to come so is Lenovo or Dell better for that? How is the tech Support at Lenovo and Dell?

This is the PC I’m looking at



steve answers:

Levnovo really talking about ibm pc’s, the one that i saw at the link is pretty basic ,amd processor good,ati card not good for gaming{can upgrade to a plug in card might have to upgrade the power supply},ram -standard, i have one i just got a couple of months ago fixing it up for my mother,boots fast runs great one issue is the power supply when i go to restart the pc the psu runs at full throttle
and nothing else will start it does this every now and then and since it’s a older ibm the psu is one of these long cube shape types and the upgraded model someone put in there is getting hard to find
i will run across it sooner or later,dell are just great ,people complain about them but i have no serious problems with them may be program errors and that is sometimes the user fault {me} last but not least you can have one custom built , check out dells as well dell.com

Maria asks…

Good laptop support brand in Mexico?

I need to purchase a laptop for my colleague whom is going to station in Queretaro, Mexico for a few years. May I know which brand has the widest and best support service over there? I’m thinking to buy Lenovo, but some said Lenovo is poor in support over there. What about HP?

steve answers:

I’d go with Dell. There support has been wonderful. They can help you on the phone or online. And if online they can ever access your computer to do the work for you if needed.

Ruth asks…

Acer Aspire One D150, Lenovo S10-2, Asus EEEPC 1005HA: Which is the best?

Which is the best among the three in terms of battery life, performance (WiFi, 3G, 2D gaming) and durability? And which provides more bang for your buck? Oh, and also how about after-sales support?
I’m planning to buy a notebook but I can’t decide which of the three I’m gonna buy.
This question is for owners of these notebooks but it would also help if you know something about these notebooks. Thanks.

steve answers:

NONE of the models you listed are laptops, they are netbooks. That means no pentium class processor, no dvd drive, SMALL screen which will give you screen fatigue after about an hour, horrible keyboard, NO video card ( so NO gaming).

If you understand the limitations, a netbook can be a great tool. It is an ACCESSORY to a real computer, NOT a replacement for a real computer. I love mine, but I only use it when I’m too lazy to carry around one of my notebooks.

Of the three, all will have similar battery life. They all use atom processors and small screens and no dvd drive so the load on the battery will be similar.

Of the three models you mentioned, TWO are reliable names with good reputations, and are actually used in industry. The other is acer. You might also want to look at HP and Dell, they are also broadly deployed.

ALL companies give HORRIBLE after sales support. There was a day when companies used to hire trained and certified technicians that would actually use education and experience to resolve an issue. That is no longer the case. In just about every case, they are now untrained morons reading a script on a screen. Of the technical support peeople, dell, asus and lennovo would be the least objectionable but as I said before, all are bad.
If you buy a dell, do NOT pay extra for the “american support” option. An untrained american moron is no better than an untrained Indian or Philipino moron. So don’t pay to “upgrade” the service plan. Dell does offer a accidental damage policy which is a pretty cool option on a netbook. Becasue of their size, they are easily damaged by people knocking them off a table or dropping them while carrying it.

If you buy the acer, DO pay for upgrading the warranty, the reliability is NOT the same as the rest of the industry.

IF you really want a netbook, you should look at the outlet stores of the various mfgrs. TONS of people buy these units thinking they are a real laptop then return them once they find out how limited they are. As a result, there are TONS of great deals if you don’t mind one that is refurbished. They were probably only used a few hours.

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Your Questions About Laptop Cases 15.6

Mandy asks…

What is the best laptop on the market at the minuet for 300-400 pounds(uk)?

Im looking for a laptop thats 300-400 pounds with good specs
using for school work, social networking and maybe some games (nothing intense)
can anyone help me please?

steve answers:

Dont go for brand as it depends oin spec trust me ive had a toshiba and it was crap only cuz the spec. What i suggest is looking for a intel core i3 or above and 4gb ram. I dont think u will be able to find a laptop with dedicated graphics unfortunately cuz of price range
i found a few by pc world
http://www.pcworld.co.uk/gbuk/laptops-netbooks/laptops/laptops/acer-aspire-e-nx-m09ek-012-15-6-laptop-19414900-pdt.html is an acer with intel core i5 and 4gb ram
http://www.pcworld.co.uk/gbuk/laptops-netbooks/laptops/laptops/acer-aspire-e1-571-15-6-laptop-19414898-pdt.html its an acer with intel core i3 and 4gb ram
http://www.pcworld.co.uk/gbuk/laptops-netbooks/laptops/laptops/samsung-series-3-np3530ec-15-6-laptop-blue-silver-17056552-pdt.html its a samsung with core i3 and 6gb ram

but re,ber brand does not count as they all buy the same parts but assemble in a different case so brand wont count at all its specs. Also more ram doesnt mean faster unless u use most of it and for ur needs 4gb is plenty of ram i would go for the acer with a core i5 as there really good cpu’s unfortunately i couldnt find anything with a dedicated graphics and a decent cpu the only ones with dedicated graphics have crappy processors. Dont go for the chromebook like one answer said trust me cuz there not worth the price i mean u cant install any programmes and require internet access 24/7 and u cant install programmes or games as its cloud based and any apps u get of chrome store are web based and require internet access

Sandy asks…

What’s the most important spec to pay attention to when buying a laptop? ?

My old laptop finally went out on me after 10 years. I’m going to need a laptop for school this semester and I’m wondering what is the most important spec I should pay attention to when I go to best buy tomorrow? (Besides price of course) I’m a college student and ill more than likely use this to write papers and research and occasionally go on YouTube when I’m bored. What would you recommend?

steve answers:

The most important specification? Why, the pri…. Oh yeah… You already accounted for the price being the most important. So… What’s the second most important specification?

Well… You can’t really say that storage space is an important specification, because not only can you get any number of portable external hard drives or flash drives to keep your data on, but it is far smarter to keep your music, movies, pictures, and documents on a separate storage device just in case you ever have to perform a factory recovery and reinstall Windows. I mean, doesn’t it just suck horribly when that time comes, and you end up wiping out everything you had, and you say “Oh, I wish I had put my stuff somewhere else!”? Wouldn’t it be better to do it right from the get go? So, then it really doesn’t matter if your laptop has a large hard drive, since you would be keeping stuff on a different drive anyway.

Some would say that Ram is important… But that really depends on what you intend to do with the laptop. Yes, I know you said you will be writing papers and do research and occasionally go on YouTube when you are bored… But I do all that (and much more) on the 7 year old Toshiba Satellite A75 that is upstairs on my coffee table. You can buy one used on eBay for around $200 or less. And… That laptop not only has 1.5gb Ram, but it is limited to 1.5gb of Ram. That old laptop is fast and responsive. Now, most (not all) laptops you buy today are going to come with 3 or 4gb of Ram… And with the bloated Windows 7 and bloated applications that are around today, you will end up needing that much Ram when using them. So, is it really an “important” specification? I suppose it is, if you are scanning the extreme low end of available new laptops, since they will come with the bare minimum amount of ram necessary. If your budget is going to put you in the market for a laptop costing $500 or more, then Ram is something you are not going to have to worry about.

Is your processor the most important specification? Well… If you haven’t already gotten this impression, then I should tell you. The most important specification really depends on what you intend to do with it. Since what you intend to do can be done with a $250 Netbook from Walmart… A Netbook with a 1.6ghz single core Intel Atom processor… In your particular case, the processor is not all that important of a specification.

So what then, would be the most important specification for *you*?

Battery Life.

You want to be able to sit in as many classes and take notes with as you can, before you charge it up. You want to be able to use it on the go as much as you can before you have to charge it. You don’t want a laptop with 2 hours of battery life. You want at least 5 hours, if not more like 8 hours. Heck, you might even want to get a laptop that you have already found an extended life battery for (a 12 cell battery).


A $530 Toshiba rated at over 5 hours of life between charges.


A $550 Asus rated at up to 6 hours between charges.


Nancy asks…

Replace the laptop screen dv6t 2000 CTO 15.6 * Whats a Good physical toolkit to open up computers need to buy?

I am trying to buy the right screen for my laptop.
It has a bright pixel down the left of the screen and it look fine on the external monitor which tells me its the screen itself please help.

I have the information as DV6T-2000 CTO 15.6
I am not sure the type of screen it is How can I find out?
I have this info:

Upgrading from CCFL to LED is not possible. If your laptop uses a CCFL-backlit screen, you must order a CCFL laptop screen; if it uses an LED-backlit screen, you must order an LED laptop screen. In case you happen to order the incorrect version, we will not be responsible for the cost of the return or of the new shipment.





Whats a good physical computer toolkit to buy?
I need screwdrivers to open up computers (laptops/desktops)
What else do I need like anti static wrist strap because i need it now to start my repairs.
What do you recommend?

steve answers:


Finding the right part to replace a defective part in your laptop can be hard. If you are comfortable taking the unit apart you will see a sticker on the back of the LCD panel that has the exact part number on it. I believe the part you need is part number 570095-001 for that particular model, but be sure to check the back of the LCD for the exact part number. Sometimes the part numbers change :)

You should look for a 15.6″ LED backlit Glossy finish screen.

As always when purchasing a part from a vendor of any kind make sure that there is some kind of return policy in place in case the part arrives damaged or defective. Ask if return shipping is paid by you or the vendor. Ask if there is a warranty or guarantee on the part. Ask if there is a way to return the part if it is the wrong part ordered. The company I work for provides a 30 day service guarantee on the parts we use, and that’s pretty standard. Be a good consumer and make sure that you’re buying from a reputable source.

As far as the “best tools” for laptop repair, I reccommend the following:

An Electrostatic Mat and ESD wrist strap
You don’t want to short out your components because of static electricity. An ESD safe mat and wrist strap will help prevent this from happening

A magnetic pad or screw bowl
Some laptops have hundreds of screws. Some of them are very, very small. Having a magnetic mat or screw bowl will help keep you from losing screws.

Fishing Lure Boxes
When you have leftover screws (it happens) put your screws into clear plastic fishing lure boxes and save them for the next time you need one.

Anti-Static tape
You need to get yourself a small roll of electric-anti-static tape to use inside the machine. You’ll use it to secure cables and such. You don’t want to use regular scotch or clear tape–those tapes can build up a static charge and might damage your components.

I am a very big fan of the Wiha 7 Pc Precision Screwdriver Set # 26190. It has all you need to open any laptop case.

Plastic Pry tools:
Plastic pry tools help prevent damaging your plastics when you are pulling things slowly and carefully apart. Look for “laptop/cell phone pry tools” when searching.

Hooks and Picks
Used to help unroute and re-route cables and such. Look for “Laptop Hook and Pick Set”

Screw Extractors
Every repair person strips a screw now and then. Have a set of extractors on hand.

Electric Drill with size 0 bit
The Hitachi exlictric hand drill features multiple speeds and settings. Get yourself a size 0 (Zero) bit.
It has a rechargable battery.

Good luck!

Geek Squad Agent Kate B
Follow Me on Twitter@AgentKateB

Donald asks…

what is the bare minimum laptop specs to run skyrim in ultra settings?

Im looking to buy a new laptop and i want to run skyrim in ultra settings (and other modern games maxed as well but mainly looking at skyrim atm).i would like the individual parts needed to accomplish this at 1080p. once i know the bare minimum i will loke for a laptop that encompases all of the minimum parts.

steve answers:

Something like a NVIDIA GT 670M should be what you want to get around 30 frames per second average, according to its benchmarks here:
- https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&ved=0CDIQFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.notebookcheck.net%2FNVIDIA-GeForce-GTX-670M.72197.0.html&ei=8LYlUauSBY_G9gScsoBw&usg=AFQjCNHhzbikVSLdShKPZC8DUCdWXrLcHA


However, there are two options that are relatively cheap compared to competition that’ll let you well exceed the NVIDIA GTX 670M in performance.

**Lenovo IdeaPad Y500 w/ Dual/SLI GT 650Ms – $899**
- Link: http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Lenovo+-+IdeaPad+15.6%26%2334%3B+Laptop+-+6GB+Memory+-+1TB+Hard+Drive/7900057.p?id=1218862009712&skuId=7900057&st=y500&cp=1&lp=1
- GPU Benchmarks: http://www.notebookcheck.net/NVIDIA-GeForce-GT-650M-SLI.84953.0.html
- NOTE: no DVD drive; second GPU takes up its place
- NOTE: This model of the Y500 comes with the SLI GT 650M configuration, and the 1920×1080 display, but not all do. Avoid any models that come with the 1366×768 display, and since in your case the 2x650M is a primary selling point avoid models that don’t have the dual GPU setup.

**MSI GX60 w/ AMD Radeon 7970M GPU and AMD A10-4600M CPU – $1199**
- Link: http://www.bestbuy.com/site/MSI+-+15.6%26%2334%3B+Laptop+-+8GB+Memory+-+750GB+Hard+Drive+-+Black/6928053.p?id=1218814314301&skuId=6928053&st=gx60&cp=1&lp=1
- GPU Benchmarks: http://www.notebookcheck.net/AMD-Radeon-HD-7970M.72675.0.html


Sandra asks…

What do you need for a gaming computer?

I am going to buy a LAPTOP to mainly play games on. games like battle of immortals and maybe world of warcraft, games that need to be downloaded. so i need to know how much ram is good, memory, and all the other stuff that is important for gaming so it does not lag and looks good. also I ONLY PLAY PC. ty.

steve answers:

Well as the other person pointed out RAM, CPU, and GPU are important but they aren’t the only things when it comes to laptops there are far more factors to consider whether they are for gaming or not, that’s why I created these helpful Laptop tips:
1. Laptop recommender: http://www.laptoprec.com/ its not great but it’s better than nothing.
2. A good laptop has:
- CPU: Intel Core i5 2410m, Intel Core i7 740qm, Intel Core i7 2630qm (You probably wont need anything stronger than a 2630qm so I’m not going to post it here), I do NOT recommend AMD.
- Video Card (GPU): Always get a Dedicated Video Card, never buy integrated video cards such as, Intel HD 3000, integrated cards slow your computer down. Some good Laptop Video Cards are (Arranged from weakest to strongest):
ATI: Radeon HD 6770m, Radeon HD 6850m, Radeon HD 6870m, Mobility Radeon 5850, Mobility Radeon 5870.
Nvidia: Geforce GT 540m, Geforce GT 550m, Geforce GT 555m, Geforce GTX 360m, Geforce GTX 460m, Geforce GTX 560m, Geforce GTX 570m.
- Hard Drive: Aim for 7200 RPM, it’s faster than 5400 RPM. This is upgradeable
- RAM: 4GB or more. This is Upgradeable.
- Warranty: Accidental damage coverage, longer than 1 year basic warranty, lifetime tech support, or all three.
- Cooling: Aluminum casing, extra exhaust fans, etc.
3. Use Costco.com they offer 2 year warranties on their computers and lifetime tech support, if you don’t have a Costco membership card borrow someone else’s card. If you can’t buy from Costco.com Newegg.com is a close second.
4. Try to avoid HP as they are going out of the PC business and heading into enterprise computers so I can’t say for sure that they will honor their warranties.
5. $700 is a good place to start as most computers under that price are just not very good.
6. 15.6 inch screen size, this means you get a numeric keypad and trust me it helps a lot but isn’t much heavier or more cumbersome than 14 inch versions.

For games I’d suggest you NOT buy any GPU lower than GT 555m or Radeon 6770m, and for the CPU I’d recommend strictly Intel Core i7, for the RAM I’d say 6GB and above.

Heres one Asus G53 for $1120 that fits those specifications:


- CPU: Intel Core i7 2630qm which is the best CPU u can buy without spending over $1500.
- GPU: Geforce GTX 460m, a very good GPU with this you should be able to play Crysis 2 on highest.
- HDD: 500 GB @ 7200RPM, a good mid-range hard drive.
- RAM: 6GB, a good amount of RAM perfectly capable of handling almost anything you throw at it.
- Warranty: 1 year accidental damage.
- Cooling: Dual exhaust fans for advanced cooling.
- Other: 1080P display, 2 MP webcam, 8 Cell battery.

For $80 more you can get an upgraded Asus G53 with a better GPU and more RAM:
- CPU: Intel Core i7 2630qm which is the best CPU u can buy without spending over $1500.
- GPU: Geforce GTX 560m, a very good GPU with this you should be able to play Crysis 2 on highest.
- HDD: 500 GB @ 7200RPM, a good mid-range hard drive.
- RAM: 8GB, enough RAM to handle anything.
- Warranty: 1 year accidental damage.
- Cooling: Dual exhaust fans for advanced cooling.
- Other: 1080P display, 2 MP webcam, 8 Cell battery.

Heres the laptop on the Asus website (more information): http://www.asus.com/Notebooks/Gaming_Powerhouse/G53SW/

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Your Questions About Google Translate

Richard asks…

Is there a way to record a saying in google translate?

I’m making a song and I was wondering if there was a way to record the voice in google translate as an audio file.

steve answers:

Hop this works for you

Sandy asks…

Is google translate reliable enough to learn from?

I have always been amazed at how well google translate makes Russian or french or any language into English. Does anyone who knows another language know if google translate is reliable enough to learn from? essentially if you just read Russian forms all day or translated american websites into Russian could you learn the language? or is it only general translation?

steve answers:

No, google translate is not a reliable source. You should not use it for learning a language. Yes, it may give you a proper translation for certain simple words or expressions, but it gets ridiculous when you try translating longer and more complex sentences or expressions.

Maria asks…

Why can’t we hear the pronounciation for some languages on google translate?

How come for some languages, you can’t hear the pronounciation on google translate. Why is that?

steve answers:

They only did the pronunciations for the most commonly used languages.

William asks…

How can I download GOOGLE TRANSLATE to my Smartphone?

I just got my first smartphone. It’s a Samsung Omnia i910. I am still learning how to manage this thing, so I’m still very ignorant. I need advice on how to download the Google translate application into my phone so I can have it at hand in case I need to translate it. I went to the Google website and accessed the Translator link, but I don’t know how to download it to my smartphone.

Your ideas are greatly appreciated!!!!

steve answers:

Go to the market on your phone and search translate and it should be the first on. I just did it on my phone to make sure thats how to do it and it worked

Ruth asks…

Where to get a google translate widget for my site?

I would like to embed a google translate widget on my site.

steve answers:

The first step is to go to the Google Translate tools page to grab the embed code. Follow the steps outlined on this page to customize your embed code. Once finished, copy the embed code.

Next, navigate to the Template Editor page. Open the template file where you want to add the Google Translate widget, and paste the code grabbed in Step 1. If you want your widget to appear on every page, you’ll to want to paste the embed code somewhere in your ‘theme’ template.

Save your template. You should now see the Google Translate widget in your store!

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