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Do You Need a High Refresh Rate Monitor for Office Work?

neonnextor/Shutterstock High refresh rate monitors have traditionally been aimed at gamers, but they have a broader appeal. Device manufacturers like Apple and Samsung have started including displays with high refresh rates in their tablets and phones. So, should you get one for your office computer, as well? What Is a High Refresh Rate Monitor? A monitor’s refresh rate is the number of times the display updates per second, and it’s measured in hertz (Hz). Most basic displays stick to 60 Hz,…

These “Gamer” PC Products Are Great for Office Work

Ekkaphan Chimpalee/Shutterstock Brands often slap a “gaming” label on products to charge extra for their supposed performance benefits. Skepticism aside, some gamer-focused products can deliver a genuinely superior experience that’s worth paying for. Gamers aren’t the only people who can benefit, either. High-Refresh-Rate Monitors AOC A monitor’s refresh rate, measured in hertz (Hz), is the number of times the display is updated every second. A 60 Hz monitor refreshes 60 times per second, outputting 60 frames per second (fps). If…

Should You Use HDMI, DisplayPort, or USB-C for a 4K Monitor?

DUO Studio/Shutterstock If you’ve bought a new 4K monitor recently, you might have been puzzled by the array of ports on the back. HDMI, DisplayPort, USB-C, and Thunderbolt are all commonplace now, but which is the best, and why? HDMI 2.1: The All-Rounder High Definition Multimedia Interface, or HDMI, is the most common display interface today. It’s used in televisions to connect games consoles and Blu-ray players. It provides a stable digital signal that can be hot-swapped (unplugged and plugged…

How to Use a Digital Camera as a Webcam

Chaay_Tee/Shutterstock Good webcams can be hard to find. Fortunately, you can use many digital cameras as makeshift webcams. If you have a high-end mirrorless or DSLR camera, you’ll even get a big boost in video quality for your online meetings. Using Your Camera as a Webcam The ability to use your camera as a webcam is largely dependent on which camera you own. Some compact point-and-shoot cameras are bundled with first-party software and drivers that allow you to use them as…

Why I Still Use a 34-Year-Old IBM Model M Keyboard

Benj Edwards In a world where rapidly changing technology feels increasingly disposable, one thing remains constant in my computer setup: my 34-year-old IBM 101-key Enhanced Keyboard, commonly known as the Model M. Here’s why I’ll never give up its clicky keys and ideal layout. Origins of the Model M An IBM patent diagram of the buckling spring actuator in use. IBM The 1981 IBM PC came with an 83-key keyboard (commonly known as the “Model F”). Reviewers generally admired it,…

PS5 and Xbox Series X: What Are Teraflops?

Microsoft Teraflops: they’re all anyone wants to talk about when the upcoming Xbox Series X or PlayStation 5 consoles are mentioned. This is because Microsoft and Sony are bragging about big performance boosts thanks, in part, to an increase in teraflops. Consoles vs. PCs: The Beasts in the Den The Xbox Series X GPU is based on AMD’s RDNA 2 architecture and will be capable of 12 teraflops. Meanwhile, Sony’s PlayStation 5 (also based on AMD’s RDNA 2 architecture) will have a GPU…

What Is a Headless Server?

Arjuna Kodisinghe/Shutterstock.com A headless server is a computer without a monitor, keyboard, mouse, or other peripherals. Headless computers are normally controlled over the network. For example, picture the computers sitting on racks in data centers while powering websites. Those are headless servers. What Does “Headless” Mean? A “headless” computer system is just one without a local interface. There’s no monitor (“head”) plugged into it. There’s also no keyboard, mouse, touchscreen, or other local interface for controlling it. These systems aren’t…

How to Disinfect Your Mouse and Keyboard

goffkein.pro/Shutterstock You probably don’t clean your mouse and keyboard very often, but you should. It’s especially important if you share a computer with others. Right now, it could also prevent the transmission of COVID-19. Cleaning your computer peripherals takes virtually no time at all, and it can prevent you and others from getting sick. You can even use the same cleaning tools you use to disinfect your smartphone. RELATED: How to Disinfect Your Smartphone What You’ll Need Cleaning and disinfecting…

How Apple’s 2020 iPad Pro Compares to the 1994 Trackpad Mac

Apple Apple unveiled a new iPad Pro and Magic Keyboard with a trackpad in March 2020. This is the first time Apple’s pushed a trackpad for iPads. It reminded us of the company’s first laptop with a trackpad: the Powerbook 500 series, released 26 years ago. Considering the historic nature of this release, we thought it might be fun to take a look back at the PowerBook 540c. Let’s compare it to the new iPad Pro and see how far Apple’s…

How Long Can Coronavirus Live on a Smartphone?

Alina Troeva/Shutterstock.com Smartphones are germ magnets at the best of times. With the spread of the novel coronavirus, they’re a potential vector for infection. The virus can potentially live on your phone’s screen for days. Up to 96 Hours, as Far as We Know The CDC says it may be possible to get COVID-19 if you touch a surface that has the SARS-CoV-2 virus on it and then touch your mouth, nose, or perhaps even your eyes. The organization recommends cleaning and disinfecting…

How to Safely Clean Your Nasty Game Controllers

Roobcio/Shutterstock Game controllers are magnets for dirt and grime. It doesn’t matter if you take really good care of your pads, they’ll eventually need a deep clean to remove skin, debris, and bacteria. Here’s how to do it without damaging your hardware. Before You Clean Before you start cleaning your controllers, it’s good to check the following “problem” areas, where grime is most likely to have built up: The “grip zone” where your hands hold the controller while you play.…

What is an eGPU, and Why Should I Want One?

Imagine a perfect world, where you can buy the thinnest, lightest, and sleekest laptop around, but still get the same amount of gaming horsepower out of it that you’d expect out of a full-tower desktop. For years, the idea of supercharging a regular old laptop by plugging in an external graphics card was stuck in the realm of fantasy, a task that only the most hardcore DIY-ers would take on after a weekend in their garage and enough circuit board soldering…