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Help me build my perfect home media machine.

Help me build my perfect home media machine. It must play blu-ray discs, browse the web, and stream HD video from internet sources. I have no interest in video games, and little interest in cable TV. Is this something I can buy? If this is something I must build myself, what kind of computing muscle will I need? [more inside]
posted by Afroblanco on May 12, 2010 - 15 answers

 

Which should I get: a faster CPU, or more memory?

I'm ready to buy a new desktop PC with Windows 7, and I can't decide whether to spend more money on a faster CPU or more memory, if either. Which would be better in the long run: i7-860 (or even i7-920) with 6 GB RAM, or i5 with 8 GB of RAM? Considering the CPU alone, is an i7 instead of an i5 worth the extra money? [more inside]
posted by Tin Man on May 7, 2010 - 12 answers

Why is the System process spiking to 50-100% of the CPU?

The "System" process on my work PC is intermittently causing the CPU utilization to spike to 50-100%, freezing the computer for a few seconds each time. Why, and is it fixable? [more inside]
posted by gemmy on May 3, 2010 - 7 answers

Overclocking my PC makes games run too fast!

When I overclock my CPU, modern games run a little too fast. [more inside]
posted by ArmyOfKittens on May 2, 2010 - 3 answers

Which Windows laptop is semi-equivalent to this Mac?

My girlfriend is looking for a laptop. She's used to a Mac (desktop) and we've determined that the MacBook Pro 15-inch with 2.4 ghz Intel Core i5 processor (she's a photographer, so needs a decent amount of power). We're pretty sure she'd be happy with that, but we're trying to figure out how much we'd save by going Windows. Of course, trying to figure out an equivalent Windows to a Mac is a bit baffling (to me, anyway), so...I turn to the fine people of Askmetistan. What's a good comparable?
posted by The Dutchman on Apr 22, 2010 - 34 answers

Is there a good and easy freeware program for Flash slideshows?

Looking for freeware software to create Flash slideshows with audio options. Does such a thing exist and if so, where? Thanks.
posted by watercarrier on Apr 20, 2010 - 3 answers

How to listen to music from PC to home theater while utilizing sub woofer?

How can I listen to music from my PC on a home theater while utilizing my sub woofer? I have my PC in a different room, hooked up with an optical cable to my home theater receiver. When I play music from iTunes on my PC, the sound only comes out of my main floor speakers and not my sub woofer. Is this possible with regular music tracks? [more inside]
posted by dpollitt on Apr 13, 2010 - 11 answers

Trying to remember the name of this company

About 5 years back there was an online PC retailer who had this fantastic looking website with all these super-powered liquid-cooled PCs. But when people went to order them, they didn't have any to sell. [more inside]
posted by smoothvirus on Apr 13, 2010 - 2 answers

PC laptop rental in Hogtown?

I need to rent a couple of laptops (PC, not Mac) for a month in Toronto to teach a class. Who do I call to make that happen? [more inside]
posted by Bobby Bittman on Apr 12, 2010 - 8 answers

Unconventional uses for a netbook?

Unconventional uses for a netbook? [more inside]
posted by Mwongozi on Apr 12, 2010 - 19 answers

Help me build a new PC

I've decided to buy a new PC, mostly because I want to upgrade before the next WoW expansion. [more inside]
posted by Vindaloo on Apr 12, 2010 - 17 answers

Make computer run faster

Please help me make this computer run faster. It's running Windows XP, and I'll tell you everything else I know inside. [more inside]
posted by desjardins on Apr 7, 2010 - 18 answers

Reusing salvaged PC fans for the connector-challenged

Firstly, I apologize for asking about computer cooling, as I'm sure there are tons of questions about it, but my problem is with the specifics. The fans in my gaming computer have been running much more lately, probably due to the warmer weather making my room quite hot. (My current fans are adequate, the computer's never been above 128f, they're just loud and high-pitched) I salvaged 2 fans from older Dell desktops, but I'm pretty clueless about the many types of connectors involved. It looks like I'll be buying a fan controller, but first I need to know what connectors it needs to have. In addition, I want to make sure that the added fans won't be too much for my power supply In short, can you please give me advice on the best way to cool my computer, preferably with the fans I already have? [more inside]
posted by N2O1138 on Apr 5, 2010 - 6 answers

Good overall book on the PC?

I'm looking for a book, site or online course notes that explain PC architecture in a moderate amount of detail. Details inside. [more inside]
posted by gadha on Mar 31, 2010 - 3 answers

What goes in a good PC these days?

Building a computer: help me put together a shopping list. [more inside]
posted by Ghidorah on Mar 31, 2010 - 10 answers

Windows 7 desktop gizmo reveals annoying escalating RAM demands.

Windows 7 paranoia: the desktop CPU/RAM clock doohickey is now the central preoccupation of my life. But I'd like to know why does my RAM usage continually creep upwards? [more inside]
posted by Kandarp Von Bontee on Mar 30, 2010 - 9 answers

Broom, broom, Eeeeeeee!

Can you recommend me a GTA or Gran Tourismo-esque game... for the PC? [more inside]
posted by twine42 on Mar 25, 2010 - 17 answers

How to access advanced BIOS settings on an Asus notebook?

Some time ago I was able to access hidden BIOS settings on my M50Vm Asus notebook and change memory settings for my video card. Now I need to change them back but have no idea how to access it again. I know that there is some magic key combination (and it's not ctrl+F1) but Google seems useless. [more inside]
posted by przepla on Mar 24, 2010 - 2 answers

I'm a Mac and I need PC help

How to transfer video from a Mac and burn on a Blu-Ray PC? [more inside]
posted by bach on Mar 23, 2010 - 3 answers

Because macaroni and glitter might not end well.

Please help me make my new computer case a little more snazzy. [more inside]
posted by haplesschild on Mar 22, 2010 - 5 answers

New PC. No preloaded software.

I want to buy a new PC. Do you recommend any manufacturers that: 1. Do not preload ANY software except the OS (except maybe MSOFFICE). 2. Allow you to add second and third drives in the machine itself. I've bought a lot of machines from mom and pop shops in the past - but want something with a guarantee now. [more inside]
posted by mildred-pitt on Mar 12, 2010 - 17 answers

New Desktop for gaming etc. - Do I go for ATI or wait for Nvidia?

My new computer comes with a pretty weak videocard for gaming. It also has a limited 475 watt power supply. I've not owned a desktop in 7 years but have noticed the nvidia/ati rivalry is stronger than ever. Which card should i choose for under $300? [more inside]
posted by phylum sinter on Feb 27, 2010 - 12 answers

Helping a friend remotely

What remote access software (pref. free) should I use for occasional tech support for non-techie clients? [more inside]
posted by wordwhiz on Feb 26, 2010 - 15 answers

Change-resistant PC Question of the Week

How do I make my 23" LCD monitor act like a 17-18" one? [more inside]
posted by kreestar on Feb 22, 2010 - 14 answers

How much PC security will I really need?

I'm about to receive a desktop computer (Windows 7 Pro) that I am going to use *solely* for playing an online game. Do I need any additional security or virus protection programs aside from what comes with Windows 7? [more inside]
posted by woot on Feb 13, 2010 - 12 answers

How do I connect a USB header device?

How do I hook up an internal card reader with USB header connection, when I don't have a USB header connection on my motherboard? [more inside]
posted by Frasermoo on Feb 8, 2010 - 10 answers

Stream dreams

Do I want a wireless bridge? [more inside]
posted by fixedgear on Feb 5, 2010 - 12 answers

Is my website virussed?

I have a personal Wordpress website/blog ('www.timpollard.com') but the other day got an email from someone I know telling me that my site appeared to have a virus on it (a redirection to one of those appalling 'buy our virus killer' sites). I checked myself and couldn't see an issue but today, using a different PC if I typed the URL diredtly I could go there straight away but if I Google-searched 'timpollard' and then clicked in the 'timpollard.com link it displayed the message 'This site has been reported unsafe' as it was trying to access an entirely different site: 'antivirus-wizard-a1.c*m'. Help, what's happening - and how can I fix it, please?
posted by timpollard on Feb 3, 2010 - 17 answers

How can I remove a virus when I can't get online?

Help! I have a virus and I don't know how to fix it when I can't even surf the web! [more inside]
posted by If only I had a penguin... on Feb 1, 2010 - 31 answers

Temporary Internet Turnoff Software for PC?

I found a free application called Freedom whereby one can disable one's internet access for up to eight hours, unless one re-boots. But it is exclusively for the Mac, and I run PC's. I can't find a version or a similar app for my Windows Vista-equipped PC. Does anyone know of such program? [more inside]
posted by swlabr on Feb 1, 2010 - 19 answers

Mac file to PC file conversion help?

Is there a way to open .pages (iWorks) files in Word 2007 which doesn't involve going back to the original sender to get them to export the file? [more inside]
posted by Zinger on Jan 28, 2010 - 8 answers

Building a low-power dumb terminal

Suggestions for hardware for a low-power dumb terminal? [more inside]
posted by Maximian on Jan 26, 2010 - 13 answers

VG B&S BBS

Is there a BBS community for people who buy and sell older/original retail copies of videogames? [more inside]
posted by softsantear on Jan 24, 2010 - 6 answers

How to play a game remotely?

I have two computers, a Mac and a PC. Can I set up my network so that I can play a game on the PC and view it on my Mac? [more inside]
posted by inturnaround on Jan 22, 2010 - 13 answers

Please recommend for me, an inexpensive all-in-one printer/scanner for PC (or advise me if I even want this)...

Please recommend for me, an inexpensive all-in-one printer/scanner for PC (or advise me if I even want this)... [more inside]
posted by thermonuclear.jive.turkey on Jan 12, 2010 - 12 answers

ModdingFilter: Any recommendations for a 0 decibel home theather PC setup?

ModdingFilter: Any recommendations for a 0 decibel home theather PC setup? [more inside]
posted by 3mendo on Jan 11, 2010 - 9 answers

how can I best edit .MOV files?

best/cheapest way to get .mov's edited? it would mostly involve cutting out clutter/swerviness and combining footage from different videos. I'm savvy with audio but I'm a novice in digital video editing. [more inside]
posted by herbplarfegan on Jan 7, 2010 - 8 answers

How to share my iTunes library so that my pc and mac can use it and keep unicode filenames?

I want to put my itunes library on a shared drive or NAS. I have 2 spare older laptops and was hoping to connect external drives to them and share them. But I have some (a lot of) songs that have filenames not in english. Some are unicode and some are big5 (an asian character encoding). I also want to be able to admin my itunes from windows and mac os or maybe just mac os. [more inside]
posted by brinks on Jan 3, 2010 - 4 answers

Mac vs HP: The laptop question

Did I do the right thing buying a HP and not a Mac? [more inside]
posted by mateuslee on Dec 31, 2009 - 43 answers

Looking for card game software with smart bridge partners

Know of any good card game software with computer bridge players who know how to bid? My mom plays Hoyle Card Games 2008 on Windows XP and is eternally frustrated with the choices her electronic partners make. [more inside]
posted by marble on Dec 28, 2009 - 6 answers

Basic multi-track recording of a medium-size group on my computer?

I've got a large collection of (mostly electric/electronic) instruments, and even some people to play them. The one hole in my musical setup is recording. I'm a wind instrumentalist originally, so I know little of the ways of preamps and what have you. Help me get started recording on my computer! Instrumentation details inside. [more inside]
posted by DoubleMark on Dec 25, 2009 - 7 answers

Recommend a graphics card for my new TV

Do I need a new video card to hook my PC up to my new HDTV? [more inside]
posted by muckster on Dec 23, 2009 - 11 answers

How to drive 12 interactives with one machine?

What do I use to drive a multi head (12 displays) interactive display wall? I want to use one machine to run 12 discrete slide shows. Each show is only 2 slides. Mac/PC? Software? [more inside]
posted by MrBobaFett on Dec 22, 2009 - 12 answers

How do I keep my new laptop new for as long as possible?

How do I keep my new laptop new for as long as possible? [more inside]
posted by wet-raspberry on Dec 13, 2009 - 16 answers

Out, Out, damn sound!

Why can't I get Digital Out (5.1) from my PC to work with my Sony receiver? [more inside]
posted by GJSchaller on Dec 11, 2009 - 11 answers

How can I stop my PC from rattling like Marley?

My PC is rattling. It stops when I hit it. This is not a long-term solution. [more inside]
posted by headspace on Dec 11, 2009 - 17 answers

Best ideas for computer training at a non-profit?

I'm looking for ideas on how best to implement computer training for a 70-person non-profit. [more inside]
posted by playmobil on Dec 10, 2009 - 2 answers

Crash Course

PC crash. How to progress from here? [more inside]
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium on Dec 5, 2009 - 18 answers

One of our monitors has failed

One of our monitors has failed. [more inside]
posted by ArmyOfKittens on Dec 5, 2009 - 9 answers

Remotely buying a computer in the UK from Canada

My parents (in Canada) are trying to buy a PC for their family in the UK, but they're having trouble finding a store that will take their money. Apparently they won't accept foreign credit cards, or even money orders. He's tried Dell, PC World, Curry's, and a few others. Any ideas?
posted by krunk on Nov 29, 2009 - 14 answers

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