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Tips For Better Home Theater Sound

Tips For Better Home Theater Sound

You’ve read the reviews and put together a great home-theater system, but until you take some time to properly set up your components, they won’t perform to the best of their abilities. We’ve assembled this checklist to help you quickly improve the sound of your home-theater system. Go to top 1. Navigate the speaker-setup menus: Every 5.1/6.1 A/V receiver has a setup menu, but if you’ve never explored the options, your sound is probably out of whack. The first step is easy enough: select Speaker Size–large, small, or none–for the left- and right-front speakers, the center speaker, and the surround speakers. As a rule of thumb, speakers with 6-inch or bigger woofers are considered large. Next, grab a tape measure and input the full set of speaker-to-listener distances. The receiver will then make sure that the sound from all your speakers reaches your ears at exactly the same time. Some receivers require you to input that information as milliseconds rather than feet–just remember that 1ms is the equivalent of one foot. Finally, you’ll need to make sure that all of the speakers are equal in level. Your receiver can send a test tone to each speaker, which will help you adjust the relative volume of each channel. As the sound jumps from speaker to speaker, the loudness should stay the same. You can adjust the level of each speaker by ear or you can. Go to top 2. Buy a sound-level meter: RadioShack’s excellent, but fairly inexpensive, Model 33-2050 meter will ensure more accurate level matching. Go to top 3. Confirm that your speaker and interconnect cables are in the correct positions: With that tangle of cables looming behind your A/V receiver, it’s all too easy to mix up which wire goes where. When you’re running through the speaker-level adjustments, double-check that the test tones are coming out of the intended speakers. DVDs such as Sound & Vision: Home Theater Tune-Up offer a bevy of additional tests. Go to top 4. Tweak subwoofer-level and crossover controls: Test tones and meters aren’t the final arbiters in the bass department. If your sub’s bass is boomy, thick, or uneven, first try lowering its level (volume) control–most folks crank their sub louder than necessary. Next, if your satellites are very small, the crossover control should also be set to its midpoint or higher. Bigger speakers produce more bass on their own, so they sound best with the sub’s crossover knob set at or near the bottom of its range. Finally, moving the sub out of the corner and closer to one of the front speakers may produce smoother, flatter bass. Go to top 5. Purchase speaker stands or brackets: Pulling speakers out of bookcases or from the tops of cabinets and placing them on floor stands or wall brackets can radically improve their sound quality. Go to top 6. Optimize speaker placement: Even if you don’t go for stands or brackets, just remember that’s it’s important to place the front speakers with their tweeters at–or as close as possible–to ear level. The left/right speakers should be equidistant from the listening position. If a speaker is within 18 inches of a room’s corner, angle it away from the corner and toward the main listening position. Go to top 7. Tame uncooperative acoustics: Rooms...

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Simple Steps to a Faster Computer

Simple Steps to a Faster Computer

A computer’s processing speed is determined first and foremost by its hardware capabilities. Nevertheless, over time, computers can slow down—and this sluggishness can often be attributed to software issues. There are some steps that you can take to help you identify why your computer’s performance is slowing down and to keep your computer running faster and smoother. Go to top 1. Check for spyware, malware, and viruses. This is something that we recommend you do regularly. Not only is your computer at risk, but your personal information is as well. These malicious little buggers can affect how well—and how fast—computers perform. Installing the latest updates to your antivirus software will go a long way towards keeping your computer safe from harm, but when in doubt, a more thorough professional diagnosis may be necessary. Go to top 2. Defrag your hard drive. Over time, hard drives become fragmented. Fragmentation slows down the computer’s overall performance, since opening fragmented files means piecing together those fragments first—and saving those files becomes similarly slower and more complicated as well. There are software programs available that can defragment your hard disc and restore those fragmented files. Many of these programs can be set to run automatically on a regular basis. Defragmenting is standard procedure these days, and highly recommended for maintaining your file systems. It doesn’t take too long, and you’ll likely be amazed at the difference in speed afterwards! Go to top 3. Free up space on your hard drive. In short, the more space available on your hard drive, the faster the processing time. Get rid of temporary files and paging files, Java applets, and any installed software programs that you don’t need or use. Older files that you don’t need as often can be moved to an external hard drive and backed up on CD or DVD. (And in any case, you should always be sure to back up your files to an external hard drive or other media.) Also, don’t forget to empty the Trash or Recycle Bin—otherwise, all of those files will still be on your computer, taking up space. Go to top 4. Add more RAM. Adding a gigabyte or two of RAM (random access memory) can give your computer a second wind and is considered a cost-effective investment. The more RAM on your computer, the faster you can access your data, since the data doesn’t need to be continuously read off the hard drive. However, since the installation involves messing with the hardware a little, and it’s easy to get confused when choosing between different types of RAM, it’s best to leave the installation to an expert or repair person. Go to top Taking these steps should help keep your computer processing time as fast as it was when you first got it. If your computer continues to act slow, contact Digital Solutionz...

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Computer Security Tips

Computer Security Tips

Almost all computers have web browsers installed in them. These browsers are used to surf the net and perform a lot of online activities. A few of the most popular web browsers are Internet explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Opera, Google Chrome, and Apple Safari. Since these web browsers are also used for online banking and other financial transactions, or your computer may have sensitive and confidential documents stored in them, it is very important that these browsers are secured. This is to prevent malwares, spywares, adwares from being downloaded and installed in your computer without your knowledge. This could result in catastrophic results in the long run. ActiveX, Java, VBScript, JavaScript are some of the software features that add certain functionality to the web browser. But they can also add vulnerability to your system too. Some browsers allow these technologies to be disabled, while some allow the use to be customized on the basis of requirement only. Go to top Let us see how some of the most popular browsers can be secured more. 1. Internet Explorer (IE): Undoubtedly one of the most popular and most used browser around the world. The browser also supports a whole lot of softwares and plugins, which makes it a little more vulnerable than the rest. To change settings for IE, select the internet options from Tools. Then select the security tab. On this tab various security zones are on display. Select each zone and use custom level protection for all. When clicking on the custom level, a second window opens up, which allows to customize your settings for each zone. Clicking on the default level button and putting the slider control to High will make your browsers more secure, and also disable several features like ActiveX, Java and so on that makes it vulnerable. For the trusted zone sites, which lists sites that you trust, set the security level to medium. Once you are fully assured about a site you can add it in the trusted zone, this will enable extra functionality for those sites. The privacy tab is used for cookie settings. Use advanced button and select automatic cookie handling override. While session cookies are less risky than the persistent ones, it is better to use manual handling of cookies most of the times. In certain cases you may use ‘always allow’ option. Use the advanced tab to disable “Enable third-party browser extension” option. Also turn off sound in web-pages option as that needs processing un-trusted data. Also select “Always show Encoded Address” option to protect against IDN spoofing. Go to top 2. Mozilla Firefox: Mozilla Firefox is very similar to internet explorer and is also another very popular browser around the world. Select Tools and then Options to edit Mozilla settings. Select “Always Ask me” where to save files option. This cuts down the risk of files getting downloaded and installed without your knowledge. The privacy category has the browser history and cookies option. Disable the option to remember anything like your entry in forms and search bar. History of your web browsing can also be disabled. For Cookies select ‘ask me’ every time for better security reason. In the privacy option check the tracking option that tells “tell the website I DO not want to be tracked”, and never remember...

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How To Clean Your Computer

How To Clean Your Computer

Follow the five simple steps in the cleanup and maintenance routine below to keep your computer and accessories looking shiny and new. It’s an easy, do-it-yourself solution to help them run smoothly and last longer. Not what you were looking for? Are you trying to clean up your computer in the antivirus software sense? This guide on the Microsoft Security website provides instructions, a free safety scan, and a malicious software removal tool you can download. Or, if you’re trying to find tips on cleaning out system clutter and unwanted files to make your programs run faster, you may find these articles helpful: Speed up your PC: Automate your computer maintenance schedule, Optimize your computer for peak performance, and How to delete programs you no longer need. Go to top Preparation: What you’ll need: Standard (flat-tip) and/or Phillips screwdriver Can of compressed air Cotton swabs (do not use a cotton ball) Rubbing alcohol Soft, lint-free cloths, paper towels, or anti-static cloths Water Safety glasses (optional) Important: Always turn your computer off and disconnect it from the power source before you begin any of these steps. Go to top Step 1: Inside the case If you see dust or other debris accumulating around the vents of your desktop or laptop, you can bet there’s more inside—and it’s only going to cause trouble. To remove it, you’ll need to open the case. That may sound more intimidating than it really is. Before you begin, of course, make sure the computer is turned off and disconnected from the power source. One more consideration: Manufacturers’ policies vary, but, in some cases, opening your computer case may void your warranty. You may even encounter a warning sticker on the case. Review your warranty terms before continuing. For desktop computers. Desktop computer manufacturers employ a variety of fastening mechanisms to secure the case. Face the back panel: Modern cases typically use two or more small knobs that you can turn by hand, or buttons that you press in, to release a side panel or the entire shell of the case. Others may require you to remove two or more slotted or Phillips screws. If in doubt, consult your owner’s manual for specific instructions. For laptop and notebook computers. Set the computer upside down on a table or other stable surface. (You may want to place a towel or paper under the computer to prevent scratches and scuffs.) Remove the battery. On most laptops, the vents on the underside will be grouped on a removable panel, secured to the case with several screws. Typically, these are very small Phillips-type screws, which may be of different lengths. Remove them, and be sure to keep track of which goes where. After you’re inside either your desktop or laptop, touch as little as possible inside the computer—keep your fingers away from cards and cords. Look for any dust bunnies or other bits of fluff in the nooks and crannies. Pick these out carefully with tweezers or a cotton swab. Blow compressed air around all of the components and along the bottom of the case, keeping the nozzle at least four inches away from the machine. Blow air into the power supply box and into the fan. Try to aim the stream of pressurized air in such a way that...

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