HARDWARE ARTICLES / RASPBERRY PI, DIY, GADGETS, AND MORE

Is your computer unstable? There may be a problem with its RAM. To check, you can either use a hidden system tool included with Windows or download and boot a more advanced tool.

about 9 hours ago - by  |  4 Replies

Microsoft’s Xbox One has limited support for some types of physical keyboards, but not mice. Connect a keyboard and you can use it to type text more conveniently than using the on-screen keyboard with your controller.

about 3 days ago - by  |  2 Replies

Sony’s PlayStation 4 includes a 500GB hard drive, but games are getting bigger and bigger–Grand Theft Auto V alone requires 50GB of space on the hard drive, even if you have the disc. Here’s how to free up space–and upgrade your PS4’s storage capacity so you can fit more games.

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Robot vacuums sound great. They do the vacuuming for you, saving time and hassle. And they’ve come down in price, too–you can get a decent Roomba for a little over $300. But while plenty of people seem happy with their Roombas, I decided to return mine. Vacuuming still isn’t fun, but a solid cordless vacuum is more useful to me than a gimmicky robot.

about 6 days ago - by  |  24 Replies

The Oculus Rift is locked down by default, and will only run games and apps from Oculus’s own store. You’ll see an “Unknown Source” message on the Rift if you try to run something else. But change one setting, and you can use Valve’s SteamVR or any other Rift-enabled app or game.

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The Oculus Rift offers a polished virtual reality experience, even though it doesn’t have the room-scale virtual reality or touch controllers like the HTC Vive–yet. Here’s how to set up your Oculus Rift, and what you’ll need to know ahead of time.

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You’re having a night out. With dinner down the hatch, you’re walking down the street with your sweetheart to the next destination. You reach into your pocket to pull out your phone, when that feeling hits the pit of your stomach: your phone is missing. Did you leave it at the restaurant? Or maybe at home? Did someone steal it? Your mind races. You have no idea.

about 9 days ago - by  |  13 Replies

When Microsoft first announced the Xbox One, the Kinect was an “essential” part of the console. In fact, the Xbox One wouldn’t even function unless the Kinect was plugged in. That’s changed, however–today, the most popular Xbox One bundles don’t even include a Kinect.

about 15 days ago - by  |  2 Replies

If you built your own PC and bought speedy RAM, there’s a good chance that RAM isn’t actually running at its advertised timings. RAM will always run at slower speeds unless you manually tune its timings–or enable Intel’s XMP.

about 18 days ago - by  |  4 Replies

The Oculus Rift and Valve’s HTC Vive require some powerful PC gaming hardware. Not sure if your PC can handle it? Both Oculus and Valve provide tools that will quickly check if your PC is up to snuff.

about 22 days ago - by  |  1 Reply

Set up your Xbox One’s TV integration and you can do more than just watch TV on your Xbox: you can also stream that live TV from your Xbox to a Windows 10 PC, Windows phone, iPhone, iPad, or Android device over your home network.

about 24 days ago - by  |  2 Replies

Microsoft has downplayed the Xbox One’s TV features since its launch, but the Xbox One still offers useful TV integration. It’s even been enhanced: You no longer need a cable or satellite subscription to watch TV. You can watch TV for free with an antenna.

about 25 days ago - by  |  1 Reply

Your Xbox One’s Kinect should “just work” after you set it up, but occasionally you may experience problems with voice or people recognition. You can recalibrate and reset your Kinect to fix these and other problems.

about 28 days ago - by  |  1 Reply

Sony’s PlayStation 4 has voice commands, just like the Xbox One. They’re just not as heavily advertised. PS4 voice commands work with a standard headset, so you don’t need any special hardware–unlike the Xbox One, which requires a Kinect for voice control.

about 1 month ago - by  |  1 Reply

In this day and age, there’s no reason to shut down your computer, then sit through the boot-up process when you want to use it. Save yourself time by putting your computer to sleep or hibernating it instead.

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If you have a Kinect, you can use a variety of voice commands with your Xbox One that turn it on, navigate the interface, skype your friends, and even record your gameplay.

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The Xbox One allows you to play a game and use an app–or just use two apps–at once. You just “Snap” an app to the right side of your screen. With Windows 10 apps debuting on the Xbox One this summer, Snap will only get more powerful and useful.

about 1 month ago - by  |  2 Replies

Sony encourages you to use “Rest Mode” on your PlayStation 4 instead of completely powering it off. Rest Mode is a bit like sleep mode on your PC–it goes into a low-power mode instead of turning off entirely, so you can get to your games faster when you wake it up. The only downside to using Rest Mode is that it uses more energy than turning your PS4 off–but how much more, and how much does it cost?

about 1 month ago - by  |  4 Replies

The Xbox One has integrated TV features and support for streaming media apps like Netflix and Hulu, but that isn’t where it ends. You can play video and music files you’ve ripped or downloaded by plugging in a USB drive or streaming them over your local network.

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Parental controls allow you to restrict child accounts on an Xbox One. You can restrict access to games, media, and apps by age rating, filter the web, and control online privacy and chat features. This works similarly to the parental controls in Windows 10.

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While setting up your Xbox One, you’ll be asked whether you want to use “Instant On” mode or “Energy Saving” mode. You can also change this option at any time. We’ll show you how to calculate exactly how much Instant On mode costs in your area, so you can make an informed decision.

about 2 months ago - by  |  1 Reply

Microsoft’s Xbox One allows you to easily capture a screenshot or record the last thirty seconds of gameplay as a video. You can also use the Game DVR app for more fine-grained recording options. All video clips are saved in 720p resolution at 30 frames per second.

about 2 months ago - by  |  1 Reply

Before you sell your Xbox One or pass it on to someone else, you should perform a factory reset. This wipes all your personal data. Whoever gets the Xbox One will have to go through the first-time setup process once again, signing in with their own Microsoft account.

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Microsoft’s Xbox One allows you to remap the buttons on its controller. This feature was originally introduced with Microsoft’s high-end Xbox One Elite controller, but it now works with standard Xbox One controllers as well.

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Google changed the device-to-TV scene with Chromecast, but as with all technology, it can have problems. At some point, you may need to reboot or factory reset your Chromecast.  While these options are slightly hidden to prevent an accidental reset, it’s a straightforward and simple process.

about 2 months ago - by  |  1 Reply
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