Hardware

Laptop or desktop computers and any components within.

Why doesn't my Bluetooth headset work?

Panasonic KX-TCA430

Episode 1515

Diane from Chicago, IL

Diane needs a cordless phone headset that will give her a hands free experience with her Ooma VOIP phone number. She bought one, but the caller can't hear her. What are her alternatives? Headsets can easily break. So before she spends money on a brand new phone, she should just try to replace the headset. Leo recommends the Panasonic KX-TCA430 for $17. There's a good chance it's a standard headset.

How can I find safe USB-C cables?

Microsoft Surface Go

Episode 1515

Johnny from Atlanta, GA

Johnny picked up a Windows Surface Go tablet, which Leo calls the cutest computer ever. It's 9.7" with Keyboard and Pen, and USB charging. But Johnny got a charging adapter for it that bricked the computer. Leo says to never buy a third party charger unless he's sure it's a legitimate product. Amazon doesn't police their third party sellers very well, and a lot of them are either counterfeit or very cheaply made.

Intel Hits Wall in Making Processors Smaller

Processor

Episode 1515

Intel has run up against a wall in Moore's Law that said that the number of transistors in a processor would double every 18 months. In the last few years, Intel has been up against a wall, not being able to double the speed. But a recent breakthrough has created a transistor using a single atom! That will enable processors to become faster and smaller, using very little energy.

Can I get my old programs off my DVR?

TiVo BOLT VOX

Episode 1514

Eric from Orange County, CA

Eric cut the cable and wants to know if he can get programs off his old TiVo. Leo says in the first generation TiVos, he would be able to. But copy protection has locked down and encrypted that data. TIVO to Go was an option, but it was a very poor solution. There is one way to do it still, and that's the analog hole. Eric can connect his TIVO using the analog component jacks (red, white and yellow), but it will be standard definition.

Are 3D printed guns a threat?

3D Printed Gun

Episode 1514

Louis from Hollywood, CA

Louis is concerned about the so-called threat of 3D printed guns. Leo says that the worry about 3D printed guns is overblown. First, the plastic guns have to have one metal part by law. Second, it's always been legal to make your own gun, and enthusiasts have been milling guns for years. It's very expensive to do it, it's cheaper to just buy one. Hobbyists will find it interesting, but they aren't going to start the apocalypse. So it's much ado about nothing, really. It won't change the fundamental issues of gun ownership.

Dick DeBartolo, The Giz Wiz

Dick DeBartolo

Episode 1513

The Swiffer Continuous Clean Air Cleaning System continuously circulates and filters out airborne dust and dirt, and it prevents them from settling on your furniture, so you can go longer between cleanings. And the device is quiet. A bit from the company: Patented Swiffer technology uses Triple Layer Filtration to Trap and Lock away dirt, dust and allergens*. Great for pets! AND KEEP COSTS LOW with replacement filters that sell for a fraction of the cost of more expensive HEPA filters - $5. Average filter life is 30 days of use.

Why doesn't my new laptop battery work?

Lithium Ion Battery

Episode 1513

Chris from Burbank, CA

Chris is having issues with his old Dell laptop. The battery has died. Leo says that Lithium ion batteries have a limit of about 500 charges and then they simply die. If he can pop out the battery, he can plug it into his AC adapter and run it. But he can get get a new battery for it as well. Chris did that and it still doesn't work. Leo suspects it's a third party battery that won't work on that Dell. It's likely a knock off.

Can I update to macOS High Sierra?

Episode 1512

Barbara from Redbluff, CA

Barbara would like to update to macOS High Sierra, but she thinks that she can't update it because she hasn't updated in a long time. Leo says you can. The way you can do it is to go to the last version your computer can handle directly. If that's macOS High Sierra, then just go to the app store download it and install. If you're getting notifications, then you're golden. It'll take awhile though.

https://support.apple.com/kb/SP765?locale=en_US