Laptop or desktop computers and any components within.
Edward has been trying to learn more about HTPCs (home theater PCs). He wants to make an old PC into a DVR. Leo says that copy protection is often an issue with this, and cable boxes are encrypted to prevent people from using their signal that aren't paying. A computer can descramble it with a cable card, but cable companies aren't that helpful with using them. They have to give you one by law, but they don't like it. The cable company pretends they don't know anything about it, even though it's been the law since 1993.
Sterling bought a new Acer Aspire M5 laptop that has Windows 8.1 and UEFI, but he can't install Ubuntu to dual boot it. Leo says that if he goes into the settings for the UEFI firmware, he can set it up. But it's not trivial, and it's not supposed to be. The BIOS can be modified to reinfect a computer, so UEFI was designed to combat that. It also causes dual boot computers to not work in that configuration. Leo was able to do it by disabling secure boot.
Josh is going old school and wants Leo's recommendation for a powerful AM/FM radio. Leo suggests checking into the CCrane Company. It may be that an Internet radio is a better option since most radio stations stream online these days. He can get just about any radio station in the world over the Internet.
CJ's mother is hard of hearing and would like to get something that will help her listen to the audio on DVD. She's currently using TV Ears and it's not working. Leo says it should and it's likely that she doesn't have it set up properly to get the DVD audio as well. Leo advises contacting their help line toll free to have them walk her through configuring it correctly.
Andy has a 13 year old son, and it seems like every year he has to upgrade the computer for him. Should he just get a new computer, like an iMac that can run Windows virtually? Leo says that an iMac running Parallels is a great option, but Andy should keep the computer in a place where he can see what his son is doing. Boot Camp is a good option for running Windows natively on it.
Georgeanna has an RV and a satellite dish. She's thinking about using Slingbox and a Hotspot with her cellphone, but that'll impact her data plan. Leo says that will definitely hurt the data plan, and the quality won't be all that great even over 4G. Slingbox is a good option though if she can get Wi-Fi connected to it. There are self aiming satellite antennas, but they aren't cheap.
Gary has a 3rd Generation Apple TV, but he doesn't have an HDTV with an HDMI connection. Leo says that Gary can get an HDMI to component adapter. Leo advises checking MonoPrice.com.
There's a converter from Gefen, and the KanexPro. It's not cheap, and he will lose some quality. That's why Leo says it might be time to get a new HDTV. A Vizio TV would be affordable and has HDMI.
Richard uses Google Chromecast and is trying to find a player that will use it on his PC. Leo says that Chromecast is a great product that hasn't even touched it's full potential yet. Leo says Chrome has a plugin called TabBrowser that will sort of work. But Plex is supporting it as of yesterday, so that's going to be the way to go.
Chris is a college student and his dad wants to buy him a new laptop running Windows 7, not Windows 8. He wants a Mac. Leo says that Dad is paying, so he really has to go with what Dad wants. Leo suggests, however, that the best Windows computer is a Mac! Even Walt Mossberg has said so. This would allow him to have the best of both worlds.
If you want a fun, cheap game for New Year's Eve, The Giz Wiz says that Spinmaster's Boom Boom Balloon is a great game. Blow up one of the included balloons and put it into the Boom Boom frame. Then roll the die to see how many sticks you need to click before your turn is over. You can push one stick in multiple times, or several sticks once to equal the number you rolled on the die. Everyone gets excited as they watch the balloon change shape as it gets closer and closer to bursting.