Laptop memory preview.jpgWhen buying any PC, memory and storage are important. With a laptop, even more so, since upgrading after the fact may not be an option. You want to get it right, but there are lot of acronyms, numbers and technical terms in play. In this piece I’ll cover off what you should know about memory and storage when buying a laptop, including RAM, VRAM, ROM, SSDs and cloud storage.

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Envy X2 preview.jpgMicrosoft set the standard for convertible laptop PCs when it released the Surface Pro 3. But the success of the latest Surface also opened the door for competition from other PC makers. The HP Envy x2 is a great example of how this class of ultra-portables just keeps getting better. With features like an even bigger 13.3-inch display, dual BeatsAudio speakers and a backlit keyboard, the HP Envy X2 is worth a look for anyone considering a Windows 8.1 convertible PC.

 

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Review: New Dell U3415W Curved IPS LED Monitor

by Blogger ‎02-24-2015 09:01 PM - edited ‎02-24-2015 09:07 PM

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Being a laptop user for years, I haven’t had much need for a monitor or so I thought until I recently tried out the LG 34UC97. It made me realize how much utility that a laptop user can get out of a monitor, especially an extra wide screen that allows you use the display in many ways. I also recently tested out the new Dell U3415W Monitor, and discovered how it makes the computing experience much better, while providing a lot of flexibility. Here’s why I really liked it.

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Amazing Dell laptop with powerful I7 processor

by Blogger on ‎02-22-2015 03:51 PM - last edited on ‎02-23-2015 01:17 PM by Editor in Chief

Dell preview.jpgThere are some beautiful and powerful laptops out there, especially if you have an unlimited budget. Trying to keep things more reasonable—under $1,200 for example—it can be pretty tough to get both performance and looks in one package. The Dell Inspiron 7000 Series 15.6-inch touchscreen laptop is one of those rare PC notebooks that offers both specs and looks, without breaking the bank.

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Preview.jpgThe display is one of the most important features to consider when choosing a new laptop. The display is the way you’ll be interacting with that laptop, so getting it right is critical. Resolution, size, aspect ratio, glossy or matte, touchscreen support, viewing angles, brightness, colour accuracy, response times—there are a lot of factors to consider. Pick a laptop with the wrong display and you’ll quickly dread using it. But at the same time, if you want a portable PC for casual use, you also don’t need to pay extra for a professional grade display. Buying a laptop? Here’s what you should know about displays.

 

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LG 34UC97 Display.jpg

 

 

 

 

As a dedicated laptop user I am not used to using a separate monitor, but I got a chance to test out LG’s new 34” LCD monitor. This wide-body monitor was so impressive I felt like I have been missing something for years. So much so, it made me definitely want to add this display to my laptop, which already has a very decent built-in retina display. The LG made my laptop dance in a way it never danced before, while making its small display feel very amateurish.

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BBY_02132015_CS.jpgWhen buying a laptop, there are some features that get all the attention: the display, for example and the CPU. Something that doesn’t always get the focus it deserves is connectivity. Ignoring this can have serious ramifications when it comes to actually using a new laptop—connectivity is not something that should be taken for granted. So when it comes time to buy your next laptop, here are the connection options you should consider.

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Buying a laptop: What you should know about processors

by Blogger on ‎01-31-2015 05:25 PM - last edited on ‎02-10-2015 12:10 PM by Editor in Chief

Preview.jpgOne of the most confusing aspects of buying a laptop is the processor, or CPU. It’s not difficult to figure out which CPU a laptop has—in fact, processor specs are one of a laptop’s primary bragging points. But what does it all mean? Is AMD better than Intel? What’s a core and what’s the difference between having two (dual-core) four (quad-core) or six (hexa-core)? How can one Intel Core i5 CPU be so much faster than another Intel Core i5 CPU? The answers to these vexing questions and more as I outline what laptop buyers should know about processors.

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How to protect your data like a pro

by Blogger on ‎01-30-2015 04:15 PM

preview.jpgGiven the amount of money we spend on things like smartphones, tablets and PCs it’s understandable that physical protection—cases, covers, screen protectors and laptop bags—are big business. What’s on these devices is often overlooked, though. If your basement floods and your PC is submerged you can buy a new PC. If you haven’t backed up the data on that computer’s drive, you have a much bigger problem and files like your digital photos, school work  and music could be gone for good. Don’t let that happen. Here’s how to protect your data like a pro.

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How to choose your next PC like a pro

by Blogger on ‎01-27-2015 07:23 AM - last edited on ‎02-10-2015 12:06 PM by Editor in Chief

Preview.jpgThere will come a time when a new PC is in your future. Maybe it’s your first, or maybe you’re moving on from an older computer that just didn’t make sense to upgrade. Making the decision to buy a new PC is one thing, but picking the right one? That’s a lot tougher, especially when you begin to wade through all the specs and promotional material. Don’t make your choice based on who has the best marketing department. I’ll help you to choose your next PC like a pro, so you end up with a computer you’re happy with.

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How to boost performance on an old PC or laptop like a pro

by Blogger ‎01-25-2015 12:10 PM - edited ‎01-25-2015 12:11 PM

Preview.jpgMany of us have an older PC or laptop kicking around that simply isn’t cutting it. The easy solution is to buy a new one. But there’s a cost to doing that and it isn’t always necessary. A relatively small investment in parts, software and labour can often make an old computer run like new. It may not be quite so fast as the current crop of PCs, but you can make it zippy enough that using it is enjoyable again. And if you still have an eye on an upgrade to a new model, you’ll have a nice machine to pass down to someone else. Here’s how to boost performance on an old PC or laptop like a pro.

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Header.jpgThe cool gear coming out of the Consumer Electronics Show continues, including the latest trend in desktop PCs: curves! I don’t mean the case, manufacturers are taking what they’ve learned with those curved Ultra HD TVs and are applying the same treatment to PC displays. The latest USB standard (more interesting than it sounds) is also being shown off, iPhone 6 case choices are ramping up and Nabi is offering new wall-mounted kids tablets that are probably bigger than your TV.

 

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Preview.jpgWe’re into the second official day of the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show and the new gear just keeps coming, including new wireless routers from D-Link that look as though they’re channeling alien technology. Here’s a round-up of the latest cool PC and mobile products in the CES 2015 spotlight.

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CES 2015: Intel Broadwell CPUs, LG Flex 2, big Chromebooks, portable SSDs and more

by Blogger ‎01-06-2015 04:04 PM - edited ‎01-07-2015 04:46 PM

preview.jpgThe first official day of the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show is wrapping up. Between today and the pre-show press conferences, a huge number of new products are coming down the pipeline when it comes to computers and mobile technology. I’ve put together an overview of some of the biggest news in this area, including one announcement that’s already had a big ripple effect in the PC industry: Intel’s “Broadwell” 5th generation Core processors.

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preview.jpgHave someone on your holiday shopping list who uses a desktop PC? There are tons of gifts you could give that will make their computer better, more fun to use and even add years of life to it. I’ve put together a list of suggestions to help them to get the most from their desktop PC this holiday season.

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BBY_Holiday_gifting.jpgAs the go-to person in my large Irish family, I’ve helped young and old pick the technology that works for them. It’s a question of figuring out their likes and dislikes to fine tune what they actually need rather than what they think they want. This approach seems to work as we've ended up with a wide range of products that has made everyone happy. Is there a product here that suits your family?

 

 

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Gifts_CS_BBY.jpgFrom the Nexus 9 —the first of a new generation of Android Lollipop tablets— to convertible touchscreens, AiO PCs like the 14.7 million pixel 27-inch iMac with 5K Retina Display and designer laptop bags, these are some of the hottest trends in desktop, laptop and tablet computing.

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Eurocom Armadillo reviewed: a gamer-friendly, business casual ultra portable

by Blogger ‎10-31-2014 06:15 PM - edited ‎10-31-2014 06:16 PM

Promo:preview.jpgEurocom is a well known manufacturer of high performance gaming laptops. I’ve had the opportunity to test several of the company’s models in the past and they always impress. This time, I have a Eurocom Armadillo, something different. It’s a thin ultra-portable with a touchscreen display and long battery life—something different for a gaming laptop. Read on to see what I thought of the Armadillo.

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Mac OSX Yosemite: worth the upgrade?

by Blogger on ‎10-24-2014 11:54 AM - last edited on ‎10-27-2014 11:56 AM by Editor in Chief

Yosemite preview.jpgApple continued its fall tradition of releasing a new version of the OSX operating system that powers its Mac computers and once again, it’s a free upgrade. This year’s version is OSX 10.10 Yosemite. Should you make the leap? I’ve spent the past week test-driving OSX Yosemite on a MacBook Air and put together a guide of how to do it, what to expect and what you need to know before making the decision.

 

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Hexa-Core Processors: Six Cores Are Better Than Four

by Blogger on ‎10-22-2014 08:44 AM - last edited on ‎10-22-2014 02:40 PM by Editor in Chief

Hexacore preview.jpgMulti-core CPUs have been a mainstay in PCs (and mobile devices) for over a decade. The innovation of having multiple cores in a single processor —each able to run software in parallel— has led to significant performance boosts. Quad-Core used to be the high end in consumer PCs, but now Hexa-Core chips are making it into the mainstream through computers like HP’s new Pavilion x360 Convertible. Here’s why you might want a Hexa-Core processor in your next PC.

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Is PC Gaming stronger than ever in the face of the new consoles?

by Blogger ‎08-31-2014 10:25 PM - edited ‎08-31-2014 10:26 PM

XSniperTower.jpgThere was a while there where it seemed PC Gaming (with the exception of RTS games and MMOs) was starting to fall off the face of the earth. While some of my friends remained steadfast (most playing Civilization IV, and V World of Warcraft or both,) I ditched my PC for consoles almost exclusively since high school. I've started to go back a bit, and I'm seeing that the game has changed so much. I can't live without a mechanical keyboard now, and I'm sure my wife appreciates her gaming mouse too.  Developers are coming back too.  Read my thoughts on the matter.

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Creating the Best Soundtrack for Your Presentation

by Blogger on ‎08-27-2014 12:33 PM - last edited on ‎09-04-2014 04:49 PM by Editor in Chief

Creating a PresentationWith Back to School, we know that assignments and projects will soon be a part of our lives as well. Use WavePad Audio Editing Software to create a professional audio track to will take your presentation to the next level.

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Asus routers for faster connections & smoother streaming

by Regular  Advocator ShelaghM on ‎08-15-2014 11:46 AM - last edited on ‎08-17-2014 11:37 PM by Editor in Chief

RT-N66 ASUS Dual Band Wireless N Router.jpgLife is too short to spend it staring at a frozen screen. Stop waiting for your download, get rid of all those pesky cables and boost your current WiFi system with the Asus WiFi line of fast routers and USB Wi-Fi adapters that can handle 3D video streaming and gaming.

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Back to school: the perfect backup plan

by Blogger on ‎08-05-2014 05:04 PM - last edited on ‎08-08-2014 09:57 AM by Editor in Chief

Preview.jpgWhen you think of data backup plans, you may think of work, business and office solutions. However, home data backup is more important than ever —think of all your digital photos, personal e-mails and music that could disappear if you don’t have them backed up. For students, backup is just as important, if not more so. A crashed hard drive has turned into the new “my dog ate it” when it comes to late assignments, so you don’t want to be faced with trying to convince a teacher or professor that your hard drive did crash and take your essay with it. The idea of a backup is to make recovery as fast and as painless as possible, should you lose your data in any way. Here’s my take on the perfect backup plan.

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Improve your Gaming with Skullcandy Headphones - Review

by Blogger on ‎08-04-2014 02:57 PM - last edited on ‎09-04-2014 11:53 AM by Editor in Chief

skullcandy-gaming-headsets2.jpgI've said it before, I'll say it again, I am a headphone convert.  Gone are the days when I slap any old thing over my ears and call that a listening experience. For the person who games or consumes other media on their consoles or PC's, features like surround sound and wireless, quick access to a mic, or simply, a next level sound quality for whatever you're watching or listening to, can make a big difference.I took a look at three of Skullcandy's offerings in the Gaming Headphone market and the results were positive indeed.

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MacBook overview: a closer look at Apple's MacBook line

by Blogger on ‎08-03-2014 05:26 PM - last edited on ‎08-08-2014 10:08 AM by Editor in Chief

Preview.jpgApple recently updated the MacBook Pro with Retina Display, moving to faster processors, doubling the RAM in base-model configurations and dropping the price of the top-of-the-line 15.4-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display. Sounds good, but what does it all mean? How much faster are the new models? What’s the difference between a MacBook Pro, a MacBook Pro with Retina Display and a MacBook Air? Which one should I choose? How do Retina displays compare to the labels I see on Windows laptops, like HD and FHD? I’ll answer all of these questions and more as we explore Apple’s MacBook line of OSX laptops.

 

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How to buy the right Apple computer for school

by Blogger on ‎07-30-2014 01:04 PM - last edited on ‎07-31-2014 12:38 PM by Editor in Chief

Which Apple for school preview.jpgApple computers have played an important role in many people's education for many years. In recent years, that emphasis has grown to include digital offerings like iTunes U —complete university courses offered through an app— and iBook textbooks for the iPad. Despite the advances in providing educationally focused digital content, Apple’s computers remain at the heart of its offerings. With so many choices, how do you know which one is the right choice for you? Should you pick an iPad or a MacPro? I will walk you through the options to help you buy the right Apple computer for your needs this year.  

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Best laptops as chosen by Best Buy’s customers

by Blogger on ‎07-29-2014 03:33 PM - last edited on ‎07-29-2014 05:07 PM by Editor in Chief

Preview.jpgLaptops are a hot product right now as high school, college and university students start preparing for back to school. Best Buy has hundreds to choose from and I’ve already dished on five of my favourites. Now it’s time to leverage the power of Best Buy’s website, through the customer ratings and comments left by people who have bought specific laptops. We’ve combed through the ratings and put together another list of five laptop computers, this time based on your feedback. Without further ado, here are five of the best laptops on the market, as chosen by Best Buy customers.

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Best laptops for Back to School

by Blogger on ‎07-22-2014 04:50 PM - last edited on ‎07-23-2014 09:09 AM by Editor in Chief

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As we hit the halfway point of summer vacation (for kids), back to school is starting creep closer. For many parents, that’s going to mean a mad scramble to find a laptop for their university, college high school or even elementary school student. But which one to choose? Best Buy alone stocks hundreds... I can’t tell you the perfect laptop for your student —the best advice I can offer is to make certain you understand your student’s requirements, research the options and don’t leave your choice until the last minute when popular models might be in short supply. To help you get started, though, here are my picks as some of the best laptops of the year for back to school.

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Asus Chromebox review: the “world’s smallest Chrome device” has big potential

by Blogger on ‎07-20-2014 08:41 AM - last edited on ‎07-21-2014 02:43 PM by Editor in Chief

Chromebox preview.jpgChromebooks —inexpensive laptops running Google’s Chrome OS— have proven to be extremely popular. Chromeboxes arrived after the portable versions but they’re now beginning to gain traction too. One of the most eagerly anticipated Chromeboxes is now available at Best Buy. Read on to see what my experience using the Asus Chromebox PC was like and whether this Windows PC alternative might be a good fit for you.

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