How to Buy an Intermediate Laptop or Desktop Computer

How to Buy an Intermediate Laptop or Desktop Computer
How to Buy an Intermediate Laptop or Desktop Computer

How to Buy an Intermediate Laptop or Desktop Computer

How to Buy an Intermediate Laptop or Desktop Computer
Ok, you need a new laptop or desktop. But, you don’t want one that’s too slow or too expensive, right?

What’s Your Budget and Need?

If you are looking to surf the Web, access e-mail, chat with friends, play games, and basically be on your computer at least 5-7 times a week, you are going to need what we’ll call an intermediate computer. In addition, if you have younger kids (i.e., pre-teens), and you’ll be sharing the computer with them, put yourself in this category. You’re going to need a little more muscle in your machine in terms of both storage and speed. An intermediate laptop or desktop (including a monitor) will cost somewhere between $700 – $1000.

Processors for Intermediate Desktops and Laptops

First of all, the science of processors is never easy to understand. However, processors for desktops are generally different than those for laptops.

For an intermediate desktop computer, consider buying a desktop with at least an Intel Core 2 Duo Processor, which is not to be confused with the dual core processor. Clear as mud, right? This may help: The Dual Core was born first. The Core 2 Duo was born second and is faster. Here’s the bottom line: If you’re looking at an intermediate desktop computer, in the $700 – $1000 range, look for one with an Intel Core 2 Duo Processor, with at least a 3MB Cache and at least 2.5GHz speed.

For an intermediate laptop, consider buying one with at least an Intel Pentium Dual Core T4400 Processor. If you’ve gone shopping on the Dell and HP Websites, these are the processors you’ll most likely find. However, since Toshiba tends to push the envelope with a more powerful machine, you’ll find that their laptops often come with a speedy Intel Core i3-330M Processor or an Intel Core i5-430M processor.

Memory for Intermediate Desktops and Laptops

For an intermediate desktop computer, purchasing one with at least 4 to 6 GB of SDRAM memory is a good idea. Here, too, you can usually upgrade the memory with little or no extra cost.

For intermediate laptops, see if you can purchase a machine with at least 3 to 6 GB DDR3 memory. You may see DDR2 versions of memory, but go with DDR3, since it’s the most current version!

Hard Drives for Intermediate Desktops and Laptops

For an intermediate desktop, it’s not unusual to find a good one with at least a 500GB through a 1TB (Terabyte) hard drive.

For an intermediate laptop, you can likely find one with at least a 320GB through a 500 GB hard drive.

How to Buy an Advanced Desktop Computer and Laptop Computer

How to Buy an Advanced Desktop Computer and Laptop Computer

If you’re the type of person who likes to take and store lots of photographs, make/copy CD’s/DVD’s, store and watch videos, play interactive games, etc.,then you are going to need what we’ll call an advanced desktop or laptop. Whether you’re a first-time buyer or veteran computer user, you probably want a new machine that is going to be more like a 6- or 8-cylinder engine car, rather than a 4-cylinder. Advanced computers have plenty of speed and lots of storage. An advanced laptop or desktop computer (usually including a computer monitor) will cost at least $1,000 or more.

How to Buy an Advanced Desktop Computer and Laptop Computer

How to Buy an Advanced Desktop Computer and Laptop Computer

So where do you start? Here are some recommendations:

Processors for Advanced Desktops and Laptops

For an advanced desktop, you’re basically looking for a beefy 8-cylinder engine in a spacious sports car. Since an advanced computer should be able to multi-task without flinching, we recommend purchasing a new desktop computer with one of the following:

-Intel Core i7 processor (with something such as an 8MB L3 Cache, 2.66GHz speed).
-Intel Core i7 Processor Extreme Edition, which they claim to be their fastest and smartest processor to date. You’ll see these processors in a new line of high-end desktops from Dell, called Alienware, which start in the $2,000 plus range.

For an advanced laptop computer, see if you can buy a laptop with at least an Intel Core 2 Duo T6600 processor or an Intel Core i7-720QM Quad Core Processor. If you want to have something faster, you’ll have to check out an advanced desktop. You can only put so much power in a little laptop body!

Memory for Advanced Desktops and Laptops

For an advanced desktop, look for one with at least 6 GB of SDRAM memory. You may also see memory listed for higher performance machines as something like “3GB DDR3 Tri-Channel SDRAM at 1066MHz – 3 DIMMs.” For simplicity’s sake, look at the amount of GB’s and SDRAM. As usual, the higher the GB’s you see listed, the more capacity your machine will have.

For an advanced laptop, look for deals on machines with at least 4 to 6 GB of DDR3 memory.

Hard Drives for Advanced Desktops and Laptops

For an advanced desktop, try to buy one with at least a 750GB through a 1TB (Terabyte) hard drive.

For an advanced laptop, look for one with a least a 500GB through a 750GB hard drive.

How to Lock an HP Laptop

How to Lock an HP Laptop

For every HP Laptop user it is important to know how to lock their computer. Putting a lock on the computer will log out of Windows and can not be accessed without a password. This feature comes in handy if the user is in a public place and must get up to use the restroom or leave their computer for some other reason. Nobody will be able to walk up to the computer and use it if it locked. Here is how to lock the HP Laptop.

How to Lock an HP Laptop
How to Lock an HP Laptop

There are three different ways to lock a HP Laptop. The first option is to go through the start button. Click on the start button at the bottom left hand corner of Windows. In the new window that pops up there should be an option in the bottom right hand corner that will allow you to shut down the computer or restart it. You may have never noticed it because you did not need the option but there is also a lock option here. Click on the lock option and then type in your password, hit enter and the HP laptop will be locked.

The second way to lock a HP laptop is to create a shortcut through the desktop. Close or minimize any programs that are open and right click anywhere on the desktop. Click where it says “New” and then select “Shortcut”. There should be a command line. In the command line type “rundll32.exe user32.dll, LockWorkStation”. After that has been typed in the command line select “Next”.

Name the shortcut whatever you wish and then click on “Finish”. That should create a shortcut on the desktop to lock your laptop any time you wish. To use the shortcut just double click on the shortcut and the computer will be locked.

I thought I would explain both of those ways just so that you would know how to do them but there is a way to lock a HP laptop that is easier than either one of those ways. Simply hold down the Windows key and press the “L” button. This should lock the computer and it can be unlocked by entering your password.

Study Shows Type of Sitting Position While Using a Laptop Can Influence Fertility in Men

Study Shows Type of Sitting Position While Using a Laptop Can Influence Fertility in Men
Study Shows Type of Sitting Position While Using a Laptop Can Influence Fertility in Men

Study Shows Type of Sitting Position While Using a Laptop Can Influence Fertility in Men

Yeffim Sheynkin, of Stonybrook University has been studying the degree to which men are affected when using laptops perched on their laps. While it is widely known that the heat that is produced by laptops, when actually used on a human lap, can cause men to have fertility problems due to increased scrotal temperatures, until now, it had not been determined if different ways of sitting might produce different results.
Sheykin had volunteers in his study sit with a laptop on their lap for one hour while sensors recorded scrotal temperatures. He then had them sit in three different positions; legs bunched together, legs bunched together but with a shield between the laptop and the lap, and with legs splayed apart.

 
Sheykin found that scrotal temperatures in the men that sat with legs bunched together with no shield fared the worst with temperature increases reaching 2.3 degrees Celsius on average, which is rather significant when you consider that normal scrotal temperatures are generally 2 to 4 degrees Celsius cooler than normal body temperature.

Temperature is important in the scrotum because sperm tend to slow down or divide abnormally under higher temperatures; this is why nature caused testicles to hang down outside of the body so that lower temperatures could help the sperm do their job right. But by engaging in an activity, such as balancing a hot laptop directly over the testicles, men are impeding their ability to conceive children, something that may or may not be desired.
Sheykin found that not only did the position with which a man held his legs while working on his laptop significantly affect how warm his testicles grew, but there were large differences in how long it took to happen. As an example, it took nearly 28 minutes for average scrotal temperature to rise just one degree with the legs apart approach while it shortened to just 14 minutes for the legs together position.

Sheykin’s study suggest that there hazards that can be associated with using laptops; hazards that are not widely known and that maybe more research ought to be conducted. It also suggests that information that is known is not being distributed in a way that might be helpful to men who might be trying to conceive children, or those who might want to know that they might be damaging themselves with their laptops without any knowledge of what is going on.

And finally, despite this small study by Sheykin and likely others in the field, what’s still not really clear is how long it takes a man to fully recover from the effects of a heated laptop nor what the long term affects might be from repeated exposure.

How to Choose the Best Gaming Headphones for You

How to Choose the Best Gaming Headphones for You
How to Choose the Best Gaming Headphones for You
How to Choose the Best Gaming Headphones for You

Being a gamer no longer means you are sitting in your home and only playing with other players in the room. Today, gamers can meet up from all over the world to play their favorite games together online. One of the best ways to communicate with each other is not the old in game chat anymore. Now, gamers are using headphones to speak to each other in real time to get through their missions. But how do you choose the best gaming headphones for you?
The following are some of the most popular headsets and the features they offer:

• Genius HS-04SU – This set of headphones includes an onboard microphone for easy chatting. It is hands free and has a handy volume control in the chord that has separate headphone and microphone controls. Those who appreciate the chorded headsets and who are strapped on cash can appreciate the low prices that come with this set of headphones.

• Logitech G35 – When it comes to power and sound quality, these are the best headphones on the market in their price range. They can run upwards of a hundred and twenty dollars, but those who want crisp clear gaming with surround sound, there is nothing better. The only issue with this set is that they are very costly while not offering the wireless option. Still in all, having “surround sound” while gaming pretty cool.

• Sharkoon X-Tatic True 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround Sound Gaming Headset – If you are looking for a headset that is truly masterful and that can go from your Xbox to the PC with no problems, then you have just found the perfect headphones. This set up has true 5.1 Dolby Digital sound with four speakers in each earphone that can all be separately adjusted on the control panel. This is the Cadillac of the headphones and offers the most true to life sound of any of the others on the market. The cost is up that at close to a hundred and sixty dollars but those who purchased these felt it was well worth it.

As you can see, price can sometimes be the determining factor in what features the headphones would have. Those who need a more budget friendly option that still offers a good sound can choose the Genius headphones. If you have a bit more money and are looking for more quality in the sound then stick with the Logitech. When money is not an option but sound quality is, then the Sharkoon is probably the best headphones out of the group for you.

JBuds Hi-Fi Noise Canceling Headphones Review

JBuds Hi-Fi Noise Canceling Headphones Review
JBuds Hi-Fi Noise Canceling Headphones Review

JBuds Hi-Fi Noise Canceling Headphones Review

Three key qualifications for new headphones
As a college freshman, a broken pair of headphones is a tragedy of Shakespearean proportions. Having dropped the freebies that came with my IPod into a frat party toilet, I was desperate for any replacement I could find. But I remember thinking that, ideally, I’d love to go a step up in quality, as there were three major problems with the IPod headphones:

1. They fit so poorly that my inner ear was left aching after every use,

2. Their noise insulation was minimal, making me vulnerable to every passing car and clamorous crowd on the street, and

3. If I jacked up the volume loud enough to drown out background noise, the booming bass was replaced by crackling static.

JBuds may be cheap, but are they a good value?

Struggling to meet these basic needs on a college student’s budget, I was thrilled to discover JBuds Hi-Fi Noise Canceling headphones available on Amazon.com for only 9 dollars! (15 with shipping and handling).

Within 5 days, my JBuds were awaiting my in my mail-box. At first I was disappointed: packed in a plain brown box, devoid of even such minor luxuries as Styrofoam packaging, I began to doubt whether going so cheap was a good idea.

Qualification 1: Comfort (A+)

My outlook was improved somewhat upon the discovery of one, major, perk: included in the packaging were three size variations of ear-buds, guaranteeing a good fit for virtually all listeners. After settling on the smallest size, I was relieved to know that my first major criteria (comfortable ears) had been met.

Qualification 2: Noise Canceling (B-)

The next step was to test out JBuds noise canceling claim, so I popped the JBuds in my ears and took a walk around the crowded streets of Pittsburgh. I won’t say I was blown away: noise still trickles through, especially at low volumes. But, for fifteen bucks, they did a pretty good job: the silicone sealant, couple with the good fit afforded by JBuds variant ear-bud sizes, cuts out enough ambient sound to work as earplugs at night, and any remaining residue of voices and engines was more than washed-out by the hearty volume JBuds produce.

Qualification 3: Sound Quality (B)

The final step was to test out my third criterion: sound quality. In comparison to the sound produced on my car stereo, music transmitted through JBuds is flatter, duller, and weaker on Bass. But they still had a major leg up over my IPod headphones: even will the volume turned all the way up, bass tones played smoothly, without a hint of static.

Overall (B+)

Overall, I was happy with my JBuds, and used them daily for almost a year, until, sweaty summer jogs eventually took their toll, and broke down my JBuds sound quality. I’d recommend JBuds to any buyer on a budget.

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MeElectronics M9 Headphones Review

MeElectronics M9 Headphones Review

Before a friend’s recommendation for the M9s, I had never heard of the brand MeElectronics. After having my previous Skullcandy Ink’d headphones break on me, I was in need of a new pair. I thought that since MeElectronic’s M9 headphones worked well for my friend, I might as well pick a pair up and try them out.

MeElectronics M9 Headphones Review
MeElectronics M9 Headphones Review

Now I think everyone should know the MeElectronics brand.

Indeed, these headphones, that did not come at a premium price, were a pleasant surprise. Don’t let the price tag or appearance fool you, it performs similarly to the top dogs in the headphone market. However, one has to take this performance with a grain of salt, as the M9 does have its downsides.

In the end, is the M9 something that you should pick up?

Pros
Let’s start out with what’s most important: the sound. I tried out a variety of songs from my playlists with these headphones, and I have to say, it delivers on this aspect. The bass is controlled and natural, and it is certainly noticeable without being too dominant. The mids sound great as well, as music through these headphones sound pretty smooth and textured. Finally, I was also surprised to note the highs sounded good as well, as it came through clearly. Obviously, it’s not the same as the best headphones around, but it is amazing at its price.

I personally like the simplistic design, as they’re pretty stylish without being extravagant. In addition, the in ear design is comfortable for the most part, as you get to choose from three standard sizes for the bud. Obviously, you’ll feel a bit uncomfortable after prolonged use, but I never noticed anything during most of my use.

Noise isolation is acceptable, and it was certainly welcome whenever I was listening to music outside especially on public transit!

I found it nice that the set came with a little case for the headphones; not anything special, but it’s a nice extra perk.

Although I haven’t had them for long, the headphones seem to be of a pretty good build, especially for its price. The cable is flexible and strong, and the earbuds seem durable.

Cons
The filter was made out of paper, which is one part of the headphones that will definitely not be very durable. A mesh filter would’ve been a much better choice.

Conclusion
If you’re a casual music enthusiast, then the MeElectronics M9 headphones will be more than enough for you. The M9s were so good that it was difficult for me to even pick out one flaw, and it was a pretty petty one at that. It gives you a premium music experience at a surprisingly low cost, and I’d certainly recommend it to everyone.

Top 5 Headphones that Will Be Music to Your Ears

Top 5 Headphones that Will Be Music to Your Ears

Everybody enjoys listening and getting the most of their music-although others may not always want to hear the impromptu concert though. Some headphones allow for noise canceling so that other background noises won’t interrupt your must time, while others allow for comfort and are rechargeable. There are a variety of head phone products on the market, and it can be difficult to choose the ones that are right for you unless you understand the type that you want to purchase.
One of the first type of head-phones that have taken their place in the top five is the Bose Quiet Comfort 3 Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones. For a comfortable fit, the cups of the ear phones will rest easily upon your head and ears. They also feature noise reduction that will block out other unwanted sounds so that you can easily listen to your favorite music or ebook while traveling or just relaxing on the couch.

Top 5 Headphones that Will Be Music to Your Ears
Top 5 Headphones that Will Be Music to Your Ears

The headphones also have a rechargeable lithium battery that lasts for up to 25 hours. If you are looking for a place to store them near your stereo or computer, they also fold easily to slide into a drawer. The high price ticket may scare your wallet some, but with the sound quality and noise canceling features, it could be worth the browse at Amazon.com.

For a more retro fashion look, the Koss PortaPro Headphones take a step back into the 80’s decade by adding a collapsible band. The sound quality is up to par offering a 3-d like surround sound that would enlighten anybody’s home theater system. The Koss headphones also offers a low affordable price and has also won the editor’s choice at Cnet.com. They are available for purchase through Amazon.com.

If you are looking for a really low price tag that will place a glimmer in your eyes, then you might want to check out the Sony Mdr-Ed12Lp/Slv Budstyle Headphones. These buds are priced well under twenty dollars and still offer powerful sound quality and built in base. And instead of wearing a strap over your head, these fit comfortably in your ear, helping to block out any other unwanted sounds. These would be perfect for the long car ride or as you drift off to sleep to relaxing tunes or a favorite classical music CD.

Perhaps if you don’t suffer from sticker tag shock, or you want to feel the total concert experience of feeling like “you are right there,” check out the headphones from HeadRoom, the DENON AH-D7000. It has caught the eyes of reviewers and consumers at headphone.com and has won a spot in the top ten. It has quoted that you can enjoy your music in “sublime isolation.” The headphones state that they do have a “lush and liquid presentation,” -although you will pay close to $1,000 to have such an experience. While they do make this top 5 list-it is definitely not something to fit into a low shopping budget.

The last to make it onto the top five list is another price friendly product, the Sennheiser HD 202 Intense Stereo Headphones. As they can be purchased under $30 at retailers such as Music123 and American Musical, these headphones can be affordable for your shopping budget. Features of these headphones include an oxygen-free copper cable, replaceable ear pads, High-efficiency drivers and they have been designed for high volume. There is also a wind-up belt clip for excess cable.

So if you really are looking for the right product that will indeed produce “music to your ears,” the following headphones offer high quality features and even carry a low price tag. If music is a constant part of your life, and you live to dance to life’s beat, then perhaps an affordable set of headphones with your choice of features and accessories may be just what you need.

Top 5 Wireless Speakers, Get Them While They’re Hot

Top 5 Wireless Speakers, Get Them While They’re Hot
Top 5 Wireless Speakers, Get Them While They're Hot
Top 5 Wireless Speakers, Get Them While They’re Hot

If you are the type of person who hates wires looming in the distance, hanging from walls, and spanning across your ceiling, but just loves the hi fidelity sound of a great speaker setup. Then what you need is the loudest set of wireless speakers you can get your hands on, and not just loud wireless speakers, but quality sounding professional audiophile approved devices.
Lucky for you I’m like you, and I’ve already done some research on the subject. While I may not be able to afford to buy them all, they sure make me drool, so lets get right down to it shall we?

First On My List Of The Top 5 Loudest Wireless Speakers, The Zikmu Wireless Speaker System.

When you think of wireless speakers the design of these isn’t exactly the first thing that comes to mind, but these small speakers actually pack one hell of a punch. Each speaker has a 70W dedicated power supply and a slim, sleek design.

You can place these wireless speakers nearly anywhere around your house. – within 50 feet – In the words of designer Philippe Starck of the Zikmu (2009) “What we designed is not a loudspeaker. What we designed is vibrating air.” Vibrating air is indeed in good form when considering the size of these wireless speakers in comparison to the sound output. It’s just a shame these wireless speakers will run you $1,600, otherwise they look fantastic.

Second On My List Of The Top 5 Loudest Wireless Speakers, The Bose® – SoundLink® Wireless Music System.

Bose is a name brand in the manufacture of speakers, so it’s no surprise that they have entered the wireless speaker market with their entry level wireless speaker system starting at $549. Bose is known for their quality manufacturing, and high fidelity audio, thus making this one of the top 5, despite the high price. Bose never boasts their speakers wattage, because they believe that their speakers sound speaks for itself, and that there is more to audio then just pure raw power.

Third On My List Of The Top 5 Loudest Wireless Speakers, The Phonic Performer A520.

This wireless speaker set will not only get you going fast, but get you going loud, boasting 80 watts RMS per speaker in a 2 speaker stereo configuration, and capable of spanning up to 100 ft between speakers, while still retaining a very crisp clear sound.

The only problem with these speakers is that they are kind of bulky and ugly. However since they are wireless you can easily hide them out of sight on a high bookshelf or some other remote place where eyes are less likely to wander. Compared to my number one on this list, this wireless speaker set is a steal at just $300.

Fourth On My List Of The Top 5 Loudest Wireless Speakers, Rocketfish™ – Digital Wireless Speakers.

If your looking for a relatively cheap wireless setup, with little to no power, that you can run around your house carrying. Then this wireless speaker set is perfect for you, each speaker is no larger then the palm of your hand. While these speakers don’t pack much of a punch they are likely the smallest wireless speakers you can get for $100 or less.

Fifth On My List Of The Top 5 Loudest Wireless Speakers, The V7 2.1.

If your looking for a sleeker design though not all that pretty, this wireless speaker set is just what you need. While this wireless speaker set has a much smaller form factor then number two above, it’s not very high quality audio.

The V7 only reaches RMS watts in the range of 17 to 20, so don’t expect a whole lot of noise out of these wireless speakers. This wireless speaker set sells for only $30 making it a bargain shoppers dream for a less cluttered wireless speaker configuration in the home. The only reason this set makes my list is because it’s so cheap, and value is a strong determining factor in our current economy.

Conclusion,

While any old wireless speaker set can give you some music these are the best of the best, in my opinion. These wireless speakers give you plenty of value for your money, and aren’t likely to let you down any time soon.

Urbanears Plattan Headphones Are Extremely Stylish yet a Little Lacking on Function

Urbanears Plattan Headphones Are Extremely Stylish yet a Little Lacking on Function
Urbanears Plattan Headphones Are Extremely Stylish yet a Little Lacking on Function
Urbanears Plattan Headphones Are Extremely Stylish yet a Little Lacking on Function

In case you hadn’t noticed, there something of a glut of headphones on the market. From over the ear to in the ear and from wrap around the head to over the head, the limits of headphones or earbuds are pretty much limitless. Granted everyone needs to address their own personal needs when it comes to headphones. Let’s face it, not every pair of headphones or earbuds fits everyone perfectly, so finding the right pair can be something of a chore. The Urbanears Plattan Headphones are an interesting take on the headphone technology, but ultimately fall a little short of what should be the goal of any headphones: great sound.
Urbanears Plattan Headphones are available from a number of retail locations both traditional brick and mortar stores and online sites like Ebay and Amazon, and retail for around $60. While it sounds a little ridiculous in the world of headphones that price tag actually puts them mid market. Several varieties of headphones or earbuds are available for under $30 and the big daddy of them all the Bose line can reach upper price limits of $200. As far as Urbanears Plattan Headphones are concerned according to Cnet.com, they are an over the ear unit and are available in fourteen different colors. They also feature a standard plug in jack which makes them versatile enough to be used on just about every audio or video device in existence.

On the plus side the Urbanears Plattan line has a few things going in its’ favor, they are stylish and the available palette assures the right match to whatever outfit you happen to have on that day (provided you decide to pick up all fourteen colors). Other than that, they feature a nice padded circle around the speaker designed to make them more comfortable. The only problem with this design is that they do not really cover the entire ear, which makes the pad actually deter from any comfort benefits.

Over the ear headphones that are not comfortable to wear for $60 could be forgiven if the Urbanears Plattan headphones had exceptional sound quality. The problem is they do not. They sound a little on the cloudy side at pretty much all volume levels. So while they are extremely stylish, if you actually want to enjoy your music, picking up a few sets of lesser priced headphones or earbuds that actually fit your particular ear is likely a better investment for your $60. However, if the Urbanears Plattan fit over your entire ear, you may have a more pleasant experience. In the world of personal acoustics, personal preference plays a huge role and it should.