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MyQuo.com » 2008 » February

Archive for February, 2008

32 bit Versus 64 bit

Friday, February 15th, 2008

There have been lots of questions about the Microsoft Windows 32 bit versus 64 bit situation. Many people out there are wondering which version they should get and what the differences between the versions are.

The answer to the question is really easy. If you are having to ask, you are better off with the 64 bit version for now. Only the computer savvy will easily deal with the lack of support for these operating systems right now.

Do you need a 64 bit os? Absolutely not at this time. The biggest advantages that these systems give is the ability to use more memory. Since most computers are fine with 2 gb and will be good with up to 4 gb for the next couple years there is no reason to go with the 64 bit operating systems.

There will be a messy transition from 32 bit systems to 64 bit systems in a couple years. My suggestion is to stick with the well supported Microsoft 32 bit system and then move to the 64 bit systems when two things happen.

First, they are fully supported. You will find a lot of current hardware lacking the 64 bit drivers. Second, until programs or games require more than 2 gb of ram. It does you little good if you have 4 gb of ram, but your computer is only using 2 gb of it. This is the case for the majority of computer users at the moment.

BTW, the answer is the same whether you use XP or Vista, it makes little difference. In fact, you should be less likely to use the higher bit os with XP because it is even less supported.

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Antec Nine Hundred Mid Tower

Thursday, February 14th, 2008

The antec nine hundred mid tower gaming case the one of those items that makes young gamers cream themselves. This is the case to have if you’re doing a custom build of your pc.

At around $110 this thing isn’t inexpensive, but then again this isn’t a cheaply made case. This high quality is the reason why this is one of the best selling cases out right now. The case comes with 2 120mm intake fans, 1 120mm exhaust fan, and a 200mm blow hole fan on top of the unit.

The intake fans will definitely have no problems keeping your hard drives cool and the 2 exhaust fans will have no problem getting the hot air out of the box. The clear side window is an added bonus for those of you who like to show off your pc.

The mid tower also sports a bottom mount psu location, which I personally like. Just make sure you have long cables on your psu. If you don’t you may have to buy extenders to reach all your components.

The bottom line is if your thinking about buying this case, buy it. Sure there are definitely budget builds out there that get the job done. The Antec nine hundred may cost a little bit more, but you also get a little more.

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E8400 temperature

Wednesday, February 13th, 2008

There has been a lot of talk about the e8400 temperature readings since this cpu came out. Many overclockers are readying irregular or high temps with these processors. If you are concerned about this, you are not alone.

The only real solution at this point in time is to wait for the first revision to come out. When will this be released, nobody knows. The amount of time it takes depends on how much of a problem Intel thinks this is.

The real question is how much of a problem is this? If you are not overclocking then it is not a problem at all. As long as you have your heat sink installed properly you won’t be having a problem with this issue

Keep in mind some motherboards are reading the chips better than others, check around and see how your motherboard is doing. It seems that Abit P35 boards are prone to the error. On the other hand Gigabyte P35 boards seem to be working fine with the e8400.

If you are a moderate overclocker, then this shouldn’t be a deal breaker. You will have to be very careful with your overclock to make sure you don’t fry your chip. If you don’t mind taking a little risk, feel free for a moderate overclock.

If you plan on doing as high as a oc as possible on the Intel e8400 cpu, this could definitely be a problem. There are other means to read the temperate of the processor, but you are playing with fire pushing the chip hard with faulty temperature readings from the chip.

Personally I would wait for the G0 type stepping that fixes this problem. I like the piece of mind of knowing everything is ok when I look up the temps. I am also a moderate overclocker and would like to push the chip to around 4ghz. That’s high enough where I would like to know what the temps are reading on the chip.

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Acer 22 Wide

Tuesday, February 12th, 2008

Acer 22 wide monitors have taken the market by storms out selling most comparable 22 inch monitors for a cheaper price. The two most popular models are the Acer AL2216Wbd and the Acer AL2223Wd. They are both similar in features, reviews and price.

These monitors are simply amazing. Acer 22 lcd widescreen monitors for sale for $230-250 shipped is a great deal. With a display in both black and silver, you will be able to find one that will look good with your gaming setup.

They come with both DVI and VGA hookups and the required cables to install and power them. There have been few reports of dead pixels and the image quality is reportedly good. The stand is a little lacking in sturdiness and lack of a height adjustment.

At the moment this is the best bang for the buck display you are going to find. Video and games look excellent. I remember paying $450 for my 20.1 inch widescreen 3 years ago. With the price being only about $250, I am temped to by one of these and dual monitor.

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3850

Monday, February 11th, 2008

The ATI 3850 video card is currently the best bang for the buck card out there right now. You should be able to get the 256mb version for around $170 shipped and the 512mb version for around $200 shipped.

Rebates for the video card are starting to pop up from various manufacturers. The reviews have been favorable and I personally am very pleased with my Diamond 3850 256mb version.

Remember that the card is PCI 2.0, but is backwards combatable with PCI 1.1. If you still have AGP and refuse to upgrade, they will be releasing a AGP 3850 soon. The card will support both AGP 4x and AGP 8x. Realize that your older CPU will likely be bottlenecking this card however.

Among the manufacturers making them are sapphire, diamond, visiontek, his, power color, gecube, gigabyte and asus. Most people are buying from sapphire and diamond and are very pleased with their cards.

As the card is newer, you may have some driver issues. The newest drivers did not work for me and I have to use the ones a couple updates back. Some people are also reporting issues with Vista. But who isn’t with any type of hardware?

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Angle Sata Cable

Friday, February 8th, 2008

There are many different types of sata cables.  There are right angle, left angle, angle to angle, straight to angle, and straight to straight.  Some of you might be wondering if one is better than the other and what the difference between all these types of angle sata cable are.

The first thing you need to realize is that a cable is a cable.  They all do the same job and the type of connector on the end of the cable doesn’t change how it works.  Now there are “high performance” cables out there which claim to be better.  Personally, I think those are a joke.

There are different types of angle sata cable because there are different needs of the user based on their case size, cable management, motherboard layout, etc.  Maybe you need an angled connector because your video card is covering your sata ports.  Or maybe you need an angled one because your case cover won’t fit back on because of the connector sticking out of your harddrive.

The only other thing you should worry about is trying to get the shortest cable that you can use.  The longer the sata cable the more problems that can come up.  Longer cables mean: more cable management, more restricted airflow, and more chance of signal interference.

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Build Own Website Free

Thursday, February 7th, 2008

I’ll expand a little on what I wrote about yesterday.

Here are 3 ways to build a website.

1. Professional

Costs hundreds if not a couple thousand dollars. You hire a website guy to build you a site. Not worth it IMO.

2. Build Own Website Free - You Have Control

You need a domain and a website hosting plan. Costs less than $10 a month for cheapest hosting plans and $15 or less a year for your domain. Should have good speed on your site. You have 100% control over you site.

Your best bet would be using WordPress and setting up a blog. Someone would then have to update the blog to keep it up to date. WP is powerful and easy to use.

It’s not hard to setup. There are many tutorials out there, both written and video.

3. DIY - You Have Limited Control

Your final option would be to set up a blogger.com account. They are a free blog hosting platform. Blogger hosts and provides you with a domain for free. There are no costs to use Blogger.

The biggest drawback would be that you don’t control your site. You could be banned at any time for violating their TOS. There are probably restriction to what you can do with an account. However, you shouldn’t have any problems.

Another problem would be if you wanted to take your site off Blogger and use your own domain, you can’t. They control the site.

There You have it. Building your own website can be done. And it can be done cheaply if not for free. Don’t be afraid, just get out there and get it done.

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How Build a Website

Wednesday, February 6th, 2008

If you were wondering how to build a website just like a caveman would ask “how build a website”, you are overestimating the difficulty of building one. Software has come a long way and it can be easy to setup your own website today for little cost.

The easiest and cheapest way to set up a website is through a blogging platform. WordPress is the biggest and best blogging software out right now. Best of all, it’s free to download and use.

Installing WordPress can be a little intimidating, but there are lots of tutorials out there that walk you through the process step by step. There are written tutorials and video tutorials. I search on your favorite search engine will bring up lots of them.

The only other thing you need to setup a blog is somewhere to host it. For a personal blog there are shared hosting plans out there and dedicated hosting plans. For a personal blog a shared hosting plan will be good enough for your needs.

If your willing to give up control of your website and are looking for a nocost solution, then you should look at Blogger. Blogger will let you set up a blog on their servers for free. The only problem is that your site is controlled by them and if you ever want to leave with your site, you can’t.

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OEM vs Retail

Tuesday, February 5th, 2008

You may be wondering what the difference between OEM vs retail is. You may be temped to buy OEM software or hardware, but be aware of the differences between the two. Sometimes it’s worth it to save the money, sometimes it’s not.

OEM stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer and is mostly utilized by big corporations like Dell or HP. These versions are often cheaper than their retail counterparts, but have restrictions on them.

Software

OEM software is available for system builders. A system builder can be you if you buy certain components such as a motherboard, harddrive, and RAM. The software will state it’s restrictions with it.

These products have limited packages, cannot be returned, do not provide support from the manufacturer. Microsoft OEM products are common and easily obtainable. Microsoft OEM operating systems are tied to the motherboard. Meaning that you cannot transfer the software to another computer. Also note than you cannot upgrade a Microsoft 32 bit OEM OS to a 64 bit one. If you want to upgrade to 64 bit you must buy another OEM copy for 64 bit or buy the retail version

Hardware

OEM hardware is even more obtainable and can also save you money. There are no restrictions to buy or transfer it. These products come with limited packaging, limited support, and a shorter warranty. In the case of an OEM cpu, the OEM version may only come with a 90 day warranty as opposed to a 3 year one. In addition this version will not come with a heat sink, requiring you to buy an after market cooler.

I try to buy OEM whenever I can. I act as my own support. If I have a problem, a few searches online will find me an answer and computer components rarely have failed on me within their warranty period. Don’t be afraid of OEM, save yourself the money.

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UPS Question

Monday, February 4th, 2008

I was asked about an UPS today. No not the United Parcel Service, an Uninterruptible Power Supply used to protect electronic components. You should definitely have an UPS if you don’t have one already. A $10 power strip is likely not protecting your computer adequately.

The question was in regards to how his UPS worked. He was under the impression that half the plugs were for battery backup and half were for surge protection. I will give a little information on how a UPS works here.

All the plugs on the unit are for surge protection. Of those plugs, some of those will also be attached to the battery backup to give you a few minutes to properly power down your computer in the event of a power failure.

It’s pretty simple really. Plug in your PC and Monitor into your battery backup slots and plug in non-essential things into the surge protection slots. These things include objects like lamps, printers, etc.

I imagine that a lot of blown power supplies occur from PC’s not being plugged into a quality surge protector or just plugged into the wall.

Another thing to realize that the wattage of your power supply doesn’t effect the wattage of the UPS needed. What matters is how much power your PC is actually using. A low end computer will pull 200+ watts. A high end computer will start pushing closer to 500 watts. There are plenty of power usage calculators on the internet if you want to figure out how much your PC uses.

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Japanese Toilet Bowl Instructions

Friday, February 1st, 2008

Check out the instructions that came with my “Western Style” toilet that I just bought off the internet:

I know that squat toilets are common in Japan. But so are western style toilets. I laughed when I saw the instructions. Maybe the people over there need them.

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