Save it, store it, back it up and back it up again – if you work by this, you may never have to experience that tummy churning sensation of remorse. Shopping for a suitable product may seem like a complete headache, especially if you are unsure of what specifications are good and which is average.
This refers to how much information your device can hold in the same way a memory card or your computer’s hard drive does. There are two main ways to connect an external hard drive to your machine; USB and FireWire. This refers to the internal memory of the product, which after searching and retrieving a file will temporarily load any extra information it predicts the processor could ask for next. As well as the features worth noting above take care to assess the dimensions and overall design of the product – will it fit with your current set up and do you like its appearance? Until you buy the device you can never be completely sure of how it will operate, for example how noisy it will be, how hot it will get, how sturdy or reliable it is etc.
There is a plethora of products pouring into this market, all designed for different users, in different colours, for different purposes, made from different materials and methods, and all claiming to be the best. Producer of sleek, business orientated devices, Seagate manufacture a range of large and small storage units. Lacie was one of the first external hard drive producers to shake things up with interesting styles, shapes and colours. If not, be sure to read part four in this backing up special guide (next week) as we explain how to recover lost or damaged files. Natalie Denton (nee Johnson) is the former editor of Digital Photographer magazine, and is now a freelance journalist and photographer who has written for dozens of photography and technology magazines and websites over the last decade. TARDIS Box is a free service that lets you bring your photos, docs, and videos anywhere and share them easily. I have found that when an external drive fails, that it is not always the failure of the drive but the failure of the enclosure.
From experience, I'm a nature photographer and I also from time to time photograph weddings and portraits.
Im in the process of looking for an online backup company, i wont back up every file just mainly the most important ones like weddings some portraits and those difficult to get nature shots. I have had problem after problem with 1TB My Books from them (2 different versions), and it has caused me a lot of grief (now I back up my back up and have back up DVD's as well because I'm a bit jaded). The LaCie hard disks I purchased over time are versatile in terms of connection, quite generous in terms of software support, and solid in terms of performance. I bought a Western Digital 2TB My Book Mirror Edition dual-drive storage system USB unit for photos and another for normal bakcups. Just a small point, but don't go rushing out to buy a USB 3.0 drive expecting lightening transfer speeds.
For me the RAID solution is very comparable in price to the regular one drive external drive. RAID 5 & 10 are (in simple terms) variations of the above with extra drives to add less chance of losing your data. While people keep going on about RAID, there is at least one important thing to note: RAID IS NOT 100% RELIABLE! I have a 2Tb Western Digital My Book Mirror Edition set as RAID 1 running the WD Green Power drives which are very quiet and run very cool. While I'm happy with my two external hds I wish this article came out before I bought them because I was trying to find comparisons and there really weren't any.
HOW-TO GEEK BOOKSRead our first book, the HTG Guide to Windows 8, or check our upcoming books. Enter your email below to get exclusive access to our best articles and tips before everybody else. With Gmail adding the ability to make free calls within the US and Canada, now is a great time to invest in a quality computer microphone. There are a ton of different microphone options, and a long list of specifications for each.
If you already have a good pair of headphones or you just want something cheap and easy, a desktop microphone works best.
If you’re considering doing some podcasting or other audio recordings, you should look into a professional microphone. There are a few other form factors that may work better for you, like lapel mics that you can clip to your shirt, or conference room microphones that are designed to be in the middle of a table full of people.
There are fortunately few options for how your microphone can connect to your computer; however, there are some important differences between the options.
Microphones can be designed to pick up sound directly in one direction – unidirectional mics – or in all directions – omnidirectional mics. However, if you’re doing more professional recording, then you may want to investigate a microphone’s frequency response curve. Manufacturers may list other specifications, such as microphone sensitivity and input impedance, but in general these factors are not important compared to those listed above. Like with most computer parts, there is no best choice – it depends on what you plan to use your microphone for and how much you’re willing to spend. Once you’ve chosen a microphone and connected it to your computer, you should test it out to make sure that your voice comes through loudly and clearly.
Click on the Start Recording button and speak into your microphone, the same volume and tone that you would use while chatting online. When you’re done, click the Stop Recording button, save the audio file somewhere, and listen to it to confirm that your microphone is working properly.
If you don’t hear anything, or if it’s too loud or too quiet, right-click on the volume control indicator in the system tray, and select Recording Devices. Windows XP provide a nice wizard for testing and setting an appropriate volume level for your microphone.
Right-click on the volume control indicator in the system tray and select Adjust Audio Properties.
The wizard will ask you to speak some sentences, repeating your recorded audio, and adjust the volume accordingly.
If you have the iLife bundle, the easiest way to test your microphone is to open GarageBand, start a new blank project, and record audio.
If you do not have iLife, try the Audacity program, described in the Recording Audio section below.
If you want to get started recording audio, whether for a podcast, commentary, or other permanent recording, we recommend trying out the multi-platform program Audacity. Audacity is a powerful audio editing tool that is free and available for Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X. This article indicates the only difference between a dynamic mic and a condenser mic is durability. DID YOU KNOW?Famed daredevil and stuntman Evel Knievel experienced broken bones an estimated 433 times over the course of his career. Disclaimer: Most of the pages on the internet include affiliate links, including some on this site. There can be any number of reasons you want to find out what your computer contains in terms of hardware and software. The first way to determine the system specifications of your computer is to check in My Computer.


Most laptops include Intel on-board graphics, which is cheaper and doesn’t use as much power. The model of your computer’s graphics card and the amount of RAM the graphics card has on-board.
Once you can remember the basic hardware your computer contains, checking system requirements is as simple as glancing at them and comparing from memory. Before using this website, we recommend running the System Requirements Lab Detection desktop app. After running the tool, just visit the website, select the game you want to run from the dropdown box, and click the Can You Run It button.
I shall start looking and hopefully soon i will be able to play the game without any lag or anything.
The thing is, that for ?350 you will not get a significant upgrade over current laptops.At ?620 you will be getting a better PC. So in your opinion it would be better for me to save up and wait till i have enough to get a decent gaming desktop pc? In this section of our backing up series (read part 1 at Backing Up and Saving Your Images) we look at external hard drives, which are arguably one of the most cost effective and simplest ways to store your images.
USB, the predominantly used connection variant, simply plug in and your computer should detect it automatically.
With this in mind source a few reliable reviews either written by technology journalists or customers who have purchased and used the device. Separated by specifications, design and budget – there is literally an external hard drive for everyone.
In particular its My Book family has received much praise for a svelte build whilst covering capacities of up to 4TB.
Well if you have fallen victim to data loss because your storage device breaks there are new methods in which you can recover files.
At worst there's the initial RAW file, an even larger TIFF or PSD file for manipluation in PS and then the final JPG. I currently have 3 external backup drives because I know at least one of them WILL fail at some point.
I had taken over 1200 photos over the four days and I was unable to back it up to my Time Capsule. I work for a local school district as a systems administrator and have handled our backup processes in the past.
Basically what that means is you can add any size storage and it will add it to the total amount of storage available.
For pretty much the same money I would rather buy a RAID than a single drive while minimizing the risk of failure and downtime.
Since the article addresses consumer backup solutions, I thought that RAID should've been covered as well. RAID is not used to keep your data safe, it is used to mitigate downtime and it should not be used as your sole means of backing up - RAID storage devices can still fail and corrupt your data (yes, this *does* happen), and they are still vulnerable to fire and flood, etc.
We’ll take some of the guesswork out of that process, and give you some tips on setting up your microphone once you get it. These include some sort of base so that you can just place the microphone on your desk and you’re good to go. These are larger, heavier, and are designed to be held either in your hand or in a mic stand – which can be an additional expense. If you have a specific need, a quick web search should reveal the ideal microphone form factor to look for. These will work the same on any computer with a USB connection, so there is no need to buy a sound card if you plan to make recordings.
If you already have a professional mic with an XLR connector, or are dead set on one, there are XLR to USB adapters, and higher-end sound cards tend to have some method of accepting XLR input.
These typically connect through radio waves received at a USB dongle connected to your computer, or through Bluetooth. If you’re in a noisy room, or if your computer is particularly loud, this is a feature to look for.
Above all, do your research and read reviews (Amazon and Newegg are good review sources) before making your decision!
There are other options that you can change in the Microphone Properties box – try them out if they seem useful to you.
But managing the basic sound options is similar to that in Windows using the Sound preferences. If you don’t, then the audio coming from your speakers could be picked up by your microphone, making an annoying high-pitched sound.
It’s temping to turn up the volume and the dynamic boost so that you can be easily heard, but that will cause your voice to become distorted (“clipped”) when you raise your voice. Some, like Skype, will change the mic’s volume settings; make a test call to ensure that you can still be heard clearly, and then retest when you use another application afterward. Overlaying tracks on top of each other lets you add background music to your voice, or allows you to record two people separately and then combine them together afterwards.
It can export to many formats, including MP3 (though this requires the download of an external MP3 encoder). Usually cardoid, or hypercardoid microphones, which pick up just a small area and deal with background noise at the expense of being sensitive to exact placement, are dynamic.
You can simply right click on the My Computer icon and pick the properties from the drop down menu. If you have a laptop with weak graphics hardware or an older PC, it’s important to check whether your computer can support a game before you spend your hard-earned cash. However, even the latest Intel graphics hardware is much slower than NVIDIA or AMD graphics. All but the most extremely expensive Haswell chips offer only moderate improvements over the previous generation.
Click the CPU header in Speccy and you’ll be able to see the number of cores your CPU has, too. Install this app and it will scan your computer’s hardware before sending you back to the website, setting a special cookie that identifies your hardware. Well, that depends on your hardware — with these tools, you’ll be able to figure out the answer! I, for one, will not run any game on my laptop if it doesn't on 1280x720 or 1366x768, with 4xAA.
Well that is probs why my laptop doesn't run my game very well but how can i make it run the game better?
So what kind of specs am i looking for and most importantly how can i tell if the laptop will be able to cope with Euro Truck Simulator especially in terms of graphics? Well the short answer is the higher the number the faster the transfer and upload rate, for example 7200 rpm is quicker than 5400rpm. Also check what software the unit comes with, as today most should include virus protection. For example, memory card manufacturer Lexar now produces products with Image Rescue software that recovers and restores lost or deleted images from any memory card even if it isn’t a Lexar-branded product. But what I do get is automatic backup of the data onto 2 disks incase one decides it doesn't want to play nicely.


I use a software product called SyncBackSe that will allow you to setup backup jobs for one or more folders. By all means futureproof yourself and buy it now, but you will have to upgrade your PC (or at least a component in it) to benefit from USB 3.0 transfer speeds. As mentioned this doesn't have to be expensive, burn to DVD periodically and leave the discs at work, with a family or friend.
I fell through the floor when I went to put day five on to my computer and it wouldn't boot up. If as I do you have some older smaller hard drives laying around you can add them to the JBOD array along with any newer larger ones you might have. I am using excellent utility rsync which is part of any Linux distribution as well as Mac OS (yes it is a clone of BSD). For those who do not know, RAID (Redundant Array of Inexpensive (or Independent) Disks) is a way of connecting hard drives together for speed, space or redundancy . Yes, it's more expensive than the regular MyBook edition but I think it's worth the extra money.
The quality and comfort of the headphones and the microphone vary pretty widely, so read reviews of models in your desired price range. However, the on-board sound features of most motherboards and laptops are not very high quality, so if you’re planning to do any podcasting or recording, you might need to invest in a dedicated sound card with a 3.5mm mic input. These options are somewhat expensive, but they can be cheaper than getting a professional USB mic of equivalent quality.
If you want to pick up the noises in the room, for instance in a conference call situation, you will want an omnidirectional mic.
By itself, this information is not particularly useful, and you should not judge a microphone with a wider response range as being objectively better.
Press M on your keyboard to ensure that the there is a green 00 underneath the bar, not MM.
It may be a little daunting for simple tasks like recording a message for Grandma, but if you want to start your own podcast, it’s worth putting in the time to learn Audacity! If you are getting a condenser microphone that is a professional model, make sure whatever you get to plug it into is capable of providing the 48V.
If you only have Intel graphics, you may not even be able to play the newest games on the lowest graphics settings.
You can find this information in a variety of different ways, including looking up your laptop’s specifications online.
Some people consider max settings mandatory, while others are perfectly fine with "medium" settings. Desktops can be upgraded a lot more than your average i5 notebook, so you save money in the long run. When I still used my old laptop, I went out to buy Portal 2, but I didn't know if my computer was good enough to run it (It was $200 because it wasn't very powerful, and as I learned later had a bad overheating issue that was a pain to fix.) The guy at Gamestop was really friendly, and he recommended the aforementioned website. Ideally opting for something around the 250GB gives you the best of both worlds and should only set you back £40 ($60). Most devices tout times of: 7200 RPM, 5400 RPM and 4200 RPM, with 5400 RPM being the most common.
Check the product is compatible with your computer, and ensure the product comes with a warranty as accidents do happen.
Similarly hard drive manufacturer Western Digital incorporate a similar program called SmartWare with the hard drives it ships, and there are more and more manufacturers following suit. I recently decided not to depend so much on that drive and bought a WD Passport 1tb external drive. I thought that would keep me going for a long time, but I'm already (1 year later) over 300G.
It will can be set up to backup only new or changed files so after your initial backup, it will take less time for later backups. The one mentioned in the review is shipped with the adapter card that does allow you to benefit, but not all do. This does take a JBOD controller card installed in your computer and I am not a MAC person so I don't know if they have the controllers for the MAC. Dynamic mics can take a beating, so if you’re rough on your electronics, they’ll hold up better.
Human voices typically fall in the 85-255Hz range, well within the capabilities of even the cheapest computer microphone. If you’re just talking with VoIP, this article would have been a start, but this website messed up by posting an article with such generalized information.
Also, Intel does not manufacture graphics cards and is lacking in these areas of expertise. With 250GB of space, photographers will easily be able to store up to 80,000 images (depending on resolution), so a terabyte will provide room for around 320,000 – much more than many will need. Before buying a drive, plough through its list of contents to discover whether this feature is included. I make a point to backup at least once a week and more frequently if a lot of files are created. But you should replace the other drive as well, once the mirror is rebuilt - chances are that both drives were bought at the same time (and possibly even from the same batch), and may fail within a short period of each other.
They also don't release drivers for games, which would optimise your graphics card for the games. Before you buy one, take the drive out of the enclosure and get the model number on the drive.
Sad to say less than months after feeling secure that all my information is safe the WD decided to not respond, it just was not being recognized by any computer, and when i ran retrieval software nothing was able to retrieve any information. I'm sure those lucky enough to own the top end Canons must see >100Mb per picture if they keep everything. Or, it may be as simple as trying to answer a query from tech support about your machine configuration.
Several months later, I purchased it on Steam, and my laptop ran it fine with medium graphics and little to no lag. However it is fair to say that this speed is fairly levelled across the board and will only range into milliseconds.
You may want to check the configurations of the second hand machine that you are about to buy. Of course I went through the meaningless task of contacting the manufacture and they suggested the same things i already did so in the end it was all gone. There are several ways you can do this and a couple of ways the machine would respond to your query and tell you what it contains. The good news is that the seagate 500gb drive is still up and running but with only 40gb of space left, deliberately so as to avoid any malfunction.
You can use some software products available that will dig out the details and give you a report. Dedicated GPUs can use all the RAM they have, so they don't use processing power on reallocating memory, but to play games.



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