Saturday, March 12, 2016

Asus VivoBook E200HA for $199

Asus has recently launched a new laptop to be added in to its entry-level list of VivoBook series. Codenamed E200HA, this new model features the latest Intel Atom quad-core Cherry Trail X5 processor with Windows 10 and is aimed primarily for students and young working adults looking for a budget and lightweight full functioning PC.

The laptop comes with a 11.6 inch screen with a 1366x768 resolution, 32GB eMMC storage, 2GB RAM, weighs 0.98kg and one year free subscription of Office 365. It does not have impressive specs but can manage basic multitasking tasks such as writing email, web surfing, office documents but don't expect it to be able to play GTA5 as it is a budget laptop overall.


Boasting up to 14-hour battery life, the VivoBook E200HA also comes with Asus proprietary Tru2Life display technology, SonicMaster audio technology, MU-MIMO Wifi and webstorage. It is available for purchase in gold or dark blue colors in Asus retail outlets or the Asus online store for just $199.


Full Specifications
Processor: Intel Atom quad-core Cherry Trail X5-Z8300 1.44Ghz - 1.84Ghz
Memory: 2GB DDR3
Storage: 32GB eMMC 
Graphics: Integrated Intel HD Graphics
Display: 11.6" 16:9 HD (1366x768)
Operating System: Windows 10 Home
Networking: Integrated 802.11ac, Bluetooth v4.1
Ports: 1xHeadphone, 1xUSB3, 1xUSB2, 1xMicroHDMI, 1xAC Adapter, 1xMicroSD Slot

Courtesy of ASUS

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Ways to speed up your old computer

Hi guys, its been a while since I posted something new here and today I'm going to share a few ways to speed up your old windows computer. If you have a computer that have gotten more and more sluggish day by day, you don't necessarily have to spend money to get a shiny new computer. Well, I'm currently typing this post using a 5 years old sandy bridge laptop which has no lag issues with office apps or gaming and I don't intend to get a new computer for the next couple of years.
Here's the secret;
1) Uninstall programs that is no longer in use
This is pretty straight forward, if you notice having toolbars or anything unwanted on your list of installed programs, uninstall them as well.


2) Uninstall features that is not needed
On the same previous window, click on the turn windows features on or off and untick those that you are not using such as windows dvd maker, media center, tablet PC components (for non-touch PCs), windows gadget platforms and reboot the computer.


3) Reduce virtual memory (pagefile)
As virtual memory is slower than ram as it uses some space on the hdd, I would recommend reducing the size of this if you have more than 4GB of ram to reclaim back the space. This option is pretty deep, go to computer properties, advanced system settings. on the advanced tab under performance, click on settings, on the 2nd advanced tab under virtual memory click on change. untick the automatically manage paging file and set the same custom size for initial and maximum to be anywhere from 1024MB to 2048MB.


4) Turn off system protection
This is one feature in windows that many people seldom use but takes up a lot of space. System protection basically creates restore points before installing major updates or programs. However, majority would just use their backup image of the computer created using symantec ghost, acronis true image, clonezilla or from the network if something happens. Turning off this feature will delete all the restore points and save quite a lot of space. This one is under advanced system settings, under system protection tab and select turn off system protection.


5) Disable hibernation
On newer computers running windows 8 and above, this feature has been remove as windows has implemented a new feature called fast startup. On older computers, hibernation will create a Hiberfil.sys system file located in the root folder of the drive the same size as your ram. Recommended to disable hibernation to reclaim back the space by opening a command prompt as administrator and typing this command
powercfg.exe /hibernate off
Reboot the computer to take effect

6) Reduce recycling bin size
This is a pretty neat trick. Simply right click on your recycle bin icon on the desktop, select properties, set a custom size and click ok. I would recommend setting the size anywhere from 1024MB to 10240MB depending on the size of your hdd.

7) Limit the programs that is running on startup
If you have a lot of programs running during startup or in the background, it will make your computer slow. open command prompt and type in msconfig and hit enter. after the dialog box open, click on the boot tab and at the timeout box, enter 3 and click apply. next, click on the startup tab and untick whichever programs you do not wish to be running during startup. examples would be adobe acrobat updater, dropbox, microsoft office, steam. However, do not untick your antivirus program.


Next open command prompt and type in services.msc and hit enter, when the dialog box open, double click some of the services you'd like, to change the startup type to manual instead of automatic. examples would be adobe acrobat updater, dropbox update service, google update service. these kind of updater services will frequently check for updates, consuming resources and slowing down your computer. However, you can still install the updates manually when your computer is idling.


8) Turn off scheduled disk defragmentation
Disk defragmentation is a good start to improving your system performance but running it at regular intervals is not good for your hdd lifespan and having it to run automatically in the background consumes your disk I/O activity and eventually slows down your computer. I would recommend turning off the scheduling and run defragmentation manually once a month. go to control panel and search for disk defragmenter. click on turn on/off schedule and untick the run on a schedule.


9) Change windows update settings
For windows 8.1 and earlier, there are multiple options for this setting. however for windows 10, there is only one option which is to install updates automatically. by doing this, windows will frequently check and install updates automatically, using your computer's resources regardless whether you are doing something important or not. If you are still using windows 7 or 8, personally I would prefer setting the option to check for updates but let me choose whether to download or install them or never check for updates (as I prefer checking for updates manually)

10) Use a trusted PC cleaner and optimization tool
There are many third party softwares claiming to clean and make your computer faster but the one that is going to be featured here is Piriform's CCleaner. I've been using this one-click tool for the past few years on my computer to clean out all the temporary files, cache, history, cookies and also helps to fix issues in the registry.

11) Scan for viruses
Sometimes a virus or worm may be the cause of a slow computer, by running a full scan using your antivirus program will eliminate the threat and restore the full operations of your computer.

12) Upgrade RAM and SSD
Last but not least, if you have about a hundred bucks to spare, adding more ram or changing your hdd to ssd would make a big difference to an aging computer.



Saturday, February 23, 2013

Logitech Wireless Solar Keyboard K750


This isn't just an ordinary wireless keyboard. It is the world's first environmentally friendly wireless solar keyboard by Logitech. Powered by light and built from fully recyclable plastic, this super-slim keyboard that only measures at 1/3 of an inch boasts dual solar panels that sits on both side of the Logitech logo on top of the keys. It keeps the keyboard charged while you type without the hassle of battery replacement. With plug and play simplicity, just plug in the USB receiver and you can start typing.


Logitech puts in a lot of effort when it comes to the environment and no doubt about it when it comes to the K750. A great innovation in typing technology, the keyboard has a PVC-free chassis and even its packaging is made from recycled material. The dual solar panels on top of the keys power the integrated ML2032 lithium manganese button-cell rechargeable battery that then pushes power to the keyboard. The solar panels can also draw perpetual power from artificial light sources--in other words, you don't have to raise the keyboard to the sun for it to work; the fluorescent bulbs above you will charge it just fine. Logitech claims that a single 2-hour charge will retain power for three months in total darkness, or more if you remember to flip the on/off switch when you step away.


The K750 uses Logitech's PerfectStroke key design that adds exactly 3.2mm of space between each key and uniform tactile feedback across the entire concave key surface. In practice, the key response is similar to that of an IBM ThinkPad laptop, so if you're used to typing on a regular keyboard, the K750 will be an acquired taste. Your accuracy might suffer in the interim, but we actually found ourselves typing faster after less than a week of using it.


With USB ports quickly filling up with hardwired peripherals like speakers, mice, and Webcams, we're happy to see that the K750 integrates Logitech's 2.4GHz Unifying USB microreceiver. The Mini-USB plug sticks out less than an inch from any standard USB and can work in conjunction with up to six other Logitech input devices for up to 10 meters away from the source.

With an exception of an integrated palm rest and glossy black chassis that reveals fingerprints and scratches, overall this eco-friendly affordable keyboard will definitely help you to reduce energy consumption and save money by not investing in batteries. Unlike the mechanical keyboards currently popular in the peripheral market, this input device uses scissor switches underneath that register key presses with a lighter touch, and give the additional benefit of low noise and comfort.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Microsoft Surface Pro


One of the most highly anticipated product by Microsoft has finally been released into the market. The Microsoft Surface, known for its sophisticated VaporMg liquid metal magnesium design is the first attempt by Microsoft to compete in the tablet world. The latest variant of the tablet, Surface Pro, is a more powerful version of the first Surface tablet released six months ago. It is loaded with the latest 3rd gen Intel Core i5 processor, 4GB RAM and a bigger 64GB/128GB storage space. The 128GB Microsoft Surface Pro has been sold out within hours of its release in the Microsoft online store.


You'd be forgiven for taking a casual glance at the Surface Pro and thinking that Microsoft designers basically phoned it in here; that they took the dark, angular, visually distinctive look of the Surface RT, made it a fraction of an inch thicker to make room for a 1.7GHz Intel Core i5-3317U processor (plus requisite active cooling) and called it a day. Look closer -- or, better yet, hold them at the same time -- and you'll see this is more than a processor transplant.

Indeed, the biggest change is in the dimensions: 10.81 x 6.81 x 0.53 inches (27.45 x 17.3 x 1.35cm) vs. 10.81 x 6.77 x 0.37 (22.45 x 17.2 x 0.94cm). (At just under two pounds, it's about 25 percent heavier, too.) But rather than just being a thicker version of the same, the Surface Pro looks as if it had an additional plate grafted on the back. The flat kickstand mounted on the rear returns, but here it's set a few millimeters away from the edges of the chassis. This forms a line that is continued around the entire device, a slight and curious gap between the back and the sides.


The Surface Pro resolution is added by stepping up to 1,920 x 1,080 makes things a little more complicated. Here we have a 10.6-inch display that looks great, offering very nice contrast and brightness, plus viewing angles that maintain that contrast from just about wherever you can see the display. (Helpful, that, because the non-adjustable kickstand means you'll quite often be looking at this thing from a less-than-optimal perspective.) It's optically bonded, like on the RT, which reduces glare when compared to a traditional glossy panel.

It's that higher resolution that we occasionally struggled with when running desktop apps. By default, the tablet is set to scale text to 150 percent its original size, making most (but not all) menus and buttons huge and reasonably finger-friendly. That's great when you're actually using your fingers, but it results in a lot of wasted space on the display when you're using a mouse. More troublingly, it made the text and icons in many apps appear rather blurry.


Overall performance of the Intel Core i5 Surface Pro more than met our expectations. A cold boot is completed in eight seconds or less, which is quite impressive indeed, and apps launched snappily and reacted well. Performance here is definitely adequate to get some serious work done, impressions that were backed by our benchmarks. The Surface Pro attained a 4,673 average score in PCMark 7 and 3,811 in 3DMark06, marks that favorably compare to the similarly specced Acer Iconia W700.

The Microsoft Surface Pro is a full-featured tablet that can be transformed into a notebook with its detachable colorful touch or type cover keyboard. It makes a very good replacement for your old netbook, with a more powerful processor, bigger RAM, bigger storage space and Windows 8 Pro. Best thing is it can handle all your apps with ease including Windows 7 desktop apps. However, being a high performance tablet notebook that has desktop capabilities, the Microsoft Surface Pro has a pretty bad battery life despite having a bigger 42.5Wh battery.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Razer Edge


The year of the tablets has just gone extreme with the introduction of the world's first tablet designed for PC gamers. It isn't just an ordinary tablet with gaming capabilities. It is a tablet that comes with 4 different modes to suit the gamer, ultimately making it a unique and innovative tablet that stands out from the crowd. The 4 different modes namely the Tablet mode, the Keyboard mode, the Mobile Console mode and the Home Console mode target mainly the 4 types of gamers which consists of the tablet gamers, notebook gamers, PSP gamers and the Xbox/PS3 gamers.


Mobile Console Mode
The Razer Edge is powered by 3rd Gen Intel Core i7 processors with NVIDIA GeForce GT 640M 2GB DDR3 graphics in a 10.1” high definition multi-touch display, and a rugged 128GB/256GB high-speed solid state drive that screams incredible performance in a portable form-factor. The Gamepad Controller for the Razer Edge makes it the only tablet in the world that allows for console style gaming on the go with full PC game support, immersive vibration-feedback and direct reflective acoustics.


Tablet Mode
Without the gamepad controller, the Razer Edge is a full-fledged tablet, ready to play all of your favorite touch screen games and applications. With Windows 8, gamers will have access to the largest library of games in the world, so you’re not waiting on the most popular games and software.


Home Console Mode
The Docking Station for the Razer Edge expands connectivity to 3x USB 2.0 ports, HDMI, and MIC in/Stereo out. Ready to connect your favorite peripherals, controllers, external display, headset, speakers, and charge your Razer Edge all at the same time. The docking station also supports your favorite Razer gear for the unfair advantage. Take advantage of the complete home console gaming experience. It’s the most versatile tablet ever.


Keyboard Mode
The Keyboard Dock for the Razer Edge is optimized for PC games and applications by converting the Edge to a notebook style PC. It is designed to channel sound through a direct reflective acoustic chamber, enhancing the Edge's native speakers for an immersive gaming experience. Also with the optional extended battery, you’ll enjoy additional game time.

For gamers who would like to feel the 4 in 1 gaming experience; having a tablet, laptop, PSP and Xbox in one device, the Razer Edge is the best gaming device you could ever bought. Imagine the power of bulky Alienware notebook in a portable tablet form factor that you bring anywhere without adding much weight to your backpack.

 
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