Tech Blog

Displaying articles for: 11-25-2012 - 12-01-2012

How to find your way around a PC

by Blogger on ‎12-01-2012 11:01 AM

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Personal Computers (Otherwise known as PCs) can seem pretty confusing. A lot of people have no idea what's going on inside, and haven’t even seen the inside of one. They can seem like mysterious boxes that you just plug things into, press some buttons, and stuff just magically happens. Even if you’re not looking to build a computer from scratch or perform do-it-yourself repair work, its good to have some idea of what components combine to make a PC, and what everything does if for no other reason than to simply demystify these gadgets we tend to use on a daily basis.


There's nothing like the sight of the word "December" on our calendars to send us all scrambling! But when you add house guests to the mix, holiday preparations can sometimes feel overwhelming. Here are four ideas you can start now, before you open your door to house guests or dinner guests later in December!



1. Prepare the Guest Room

2. Control the Clutter

3. Make Clean-ups Easy

4. Update Your Glassware & Dinnerware








Great Prices on Entry Level Receivers

by Blogger ‎11-30-2012 10:24 PM - edited ‎11-30-2012 10:26 PM



Building your first serious home theatre system can be a heck of a lot of fun. Loaded with today’s most modern connectivity options, the following entry-level receivers boast features like 3D and 4K compatibility. This trio of devices are currently discounted, but you'll have to act quick to take advantage of this promotion – these sale prices only last until December 6th.


PS Vita Firmware 2.00 Rundown

by Blogger ‎11-30-2012 09:58 PM - edited ‎11-30-2012 10:12 PM



Whole numbers.  When it comes to PlayStation firmware updates, whole numbers typically signal significant features additions and updates, so when Sony unleashed PS Vita firmware 2.00 last week, expectations were high. I wasn't disappointed, this update delivers a host of new features that add a significant amount of value to the overall PS Vita offering. Let's take a look, shall we?


Street Fighter II and X-Men: 2 classics worth downloading now

by Blogger ‎11-30-2012 06:36 PM - edited ‎11-30-2012 06:37 PM

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If you’re like me and you remember certain video games in the late 1980s and early 1990s, then you no doubt pumped a lot of quarters into the Street Fighter II games and the classic X-Men arcade. Now, for just a handful, you can get them on your iOS or Android device.


Review: Apple iPhone 5

by Blogger ‎11-30-2012 04:58 PM - edited ‎11-30-2012 04:59 PM


have been testing the iPhone 5 for over a month now as my main smartphone, and so far it is the best iPhone I have used. The larger 4-inch Retina Display, faster  4G LTE (Long Term Evolution) data connectivity, thinner and lighter form factor are all improvements to an already outstanding smartphone.


Preview: Samsung Windows Phone 8 ATIV S [photo story with video]

by Retired Blogger ‎11-30-2012 11:04 AM - edited ‎12-14-2012 09:27 AM

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UPDATE: I have added a hands-on video of the Samsung ATIV S after the break.


Along with HTC and Nokia, one of Microsoft’s other big partners for the launch of Windows Phone 8 is Samsung. The first phone from Samsung running Microsoft’s new flagship OS is the ATIV S, and it will be launching in Canada on Bell, Rogers, Sasktel and TELUS. While it was expected to be in stores by now, it does seem like there has been a slight delay. According to this update, we should now see this superphone in early December. While I haven’t had a chance to properly test one out for an extended period, I did recently get to briefly play with one, so you can check out some photos of this gorgeous looking phone after the break.


Celebrate another amazing Movember; three tips to ‘Mo-down

by Blogger on ‎11-30-2012 08:57 AM - last edited on ‎11-30-2012 10:32 AM by Retired Administrator


If you’ve grown a ‘Mo for the month of November and normally don’t rock facial hair, you – and probably those around you – look forward to seeing the hairpieces gone from the face. To help you get ready for the big shave, here are easy and affordable tips along with some toiletries available at Future Shop to freshen up for the weekend ahead.


How to use Windows 8's refresh feature.

by Blogger on ‎11-29-2012 03:05 PM



One of my favorite new features with Windows 8 is the new ability to “refresh” your PC. If you’ve ever had to reformat your PC to bring it back to a condition resembling how it was when you first got it, with everything humming along optimally, then you’ll want ot pay attention here. This is for you.




If you bought a Windows Phone 7 smartphone over the course of this year, you’re probably running version 7.5 of the operating system, otherwise known as Mango. As the launch of Windows Phone 8 was getting closer, Microsoft had indicated it would also release version 7.8 for existing WP7 users, since there was no direct upgrade path to WP8. That release has now been delayed till early 2013.




Lenovo is quickly becoming one of my favourite PC manufacturers. Some of the best machines I’ve laid hands on this year have been Lenovo models. The latest is this IdeaCentre B540. Its an update to the B-Series all-in-one PCs and one of the hottest new Windows 8 desktops available.


What’s Cooking This Weekend?

by Blogger on ‎11-29-2012 12:05 PM



Put your chef hat on and get inspired to open a bottle of red wine and make dinner at home this weekend. You’ll love this week’s recipe idea: Homemade pizza





I had a chance to get my hands on Leatherman's new Crunch tool and was impressed with the features it packs in a compact leather case, about the size of pocket knife. After handling it over a weekend, I can see what gadget and tool lovers appreciate inventions by Leatherman.






Holiday Gift Guide: Baking Extravaganza

by Blogger on ‎11-29-2012 11:02 AM



Let the countdown begin for holiday gift giving.  For many, it’s stressful to find the perfect gift for friends and family. Should it be another bottle of wine or a gift card or a plaid shirt?  How about new baking tools to make this economical hobby much more fun? We are living in a time where baking isn’t suggested for housewives. In fact, it’s becoming a more rewarding, creative, enjoyable pastime for many. With new tools, the inspiration for baking will become grander and fun.


Five stocking stuffers for Camera Lovers

by Blogger on ‎11-29-2012 10:45 AM - last edited on ‎06-10-2013 11:18 AM by JorgeM Recognized Expert


If you’ve got a photo buff in your circle, either a friend or a family member, the easiest gifts are sometime the most appreciated. If they’re serious about photography they’ll want to pick out their own gear, but you can generally grab some accessories with ease… and they’re just the right size for a stocking! Here are 5 gifts that you can grab that’ll put some smiles on the other side of the camera on your holiday morning.


$100 or Less: 6 Stocking Stuffers for the Home Theatre Enthusiast

by Blogger ‎11-28-2012 05:55 PM - edited ‎11-28-2012 06:00 PM

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From high quality audio components to a variety of outstanding home theatre accessories, here’s a half dozen hi-tech stocking stuffers which won’t cost you more than a hundred dollars.




Around this time of year people start filling their homes with more value than ever before. Think of all the gifts that get stockpiled, or all the money spent on gear through end of year sales. Theres a lot of value there for you and your family. All that stuff is also pretty valuable to strangers and potential thieves too. Of course you can get a lot of high-value gear through Future Shop, but you can also get some means to protect all of that stuff. Future Shop actually carries a whole range of home security technology to keep everything nice and protected.


Review: Call Of Duty: Black Ops II

by Blogger on ‎11-28-2012 10:29 AM



A couple of weeks ago we saw the huge launch of Call of Duty: Black Ops II to eager fans across Canada. There were midnight openings for the game at Future Shop locations coast to coast. PaulH shared some of his photos from the Toronto launch event earlier. Now that we’ve had the chance to sink our teeth into it a bit, lets take a closer look at what it has to offer.



It’s time to talk about gear! Let’s get cracking by looking at the three important physical parts to your camera: 


Glass - light passes through it. Without good glass you’re already at a disadvantage, as you’ll have to deal with aberrations and other defects that can negatively impact how your pictures will look.


Sensor - this is where light is captured. They come in different sizes depending on the type of camera, and different resolutions. The “megapixel race” has stalled out for now - we’re seeing great image quality from cameras as low as 5MP and as high as 30+.


Processor - this is where every camera manufacturer adds their special sauce, taking the data created by the sensor and processing it. RAW images are a dump of most of that information without a lot of the processing, whereas JPEG output will generally have that processing and compression done in-camera. That’s why RAW images are so large: they bypass most of the compression that you’ll see in processed pictures.



A Closer Look at the Bowers & Wilkins A7

by Blogger ‎11-27-2012 09:51 PM - edited ‎11-28-2012 09:45 AM

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If you’re shopping for a compact audio system this holiday season, it’s definitely time to check out the Bowers & Wilkins A7. Let’s take a thorough look at this wireless stereo, and determine its true capabilities.




The first Professor Layton game on Nintendo 3DS is a daring one which sees our habitual, puzzle-solving gentleman make his bold move into the third-dimension – bringing with him a familiar cast of characters and all-new puzzles that take advantage of this added dimension.



So you’ve bought a DSLR and you want to add one of the coolest looking, most useful, and in some cases most difficult to use accessories: a flash. The alphabet soup that you run into with DSLRs (hah!) can be hard to decipher. Today we’re going to be looking at TTL and what that means when you’re trying to buy a new flash.



Just Announced: Nintendo Wii Mini

by Blogger ‎11-27-2012 05:00 AM - edited ‎11-29-2012 07:05 PM

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[Update: Nintendo has stated that the Wii Mini is currently exclusive to Canada.  No other territories have been announced.  Further, gamers who register their Wii Mini at and complete a small survey will receive 100 Coins to their Club Nintendo account.]

Nintendo will release a brand new version of its flagship Wii console called "Wii Mini" on December 7th, for the low price of $99.99, the company has just announced.  The redesigned console will have a red casing with a textured black matte finish on top, and will come packaged with red Wii Remote Plus and Nunchuk controllers.


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If you own a DSLR or you’re thinking about getting one, chances are you’ve seen the bulky grips that you can attach to your camera. It might seem curious as to why someone would want to add more weight and size to their camera, but it actually makes a whole lot of sense. If you’re in the market for a great accessory for yourself or a family member (they make phenomenal stocking stuffers for the holidays) a battery grip should be high on your list.


Big Screen LED Powerhouses

by Blogger on ‎11-26-2012 10:50 PM - last edited on ‎01-23-2013 10:49 AM by JorgeM Recognized Expert

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Many of us daydream of receiving a new big screen LED television this holiday season. Selected for their incredible quality and impressive size, the following 1080p Smart TVs can transform an ordinary home theatre system into the envy of the neighbourhood.


Getting to know your Ultrabook and Tablet processors - Part 1: Intel

by Blogger ‎11-26-2012 10:05 PM - edited ‎11-28-2012 05:28 AM




Intel is the forerunner in desktop and notebook processors for both Macs and PCs. They’ve long focused on low-power-high efficiency processors under their Centrino and Atom processor lines. 


I recently met with Intel's Market Development Manager Joe Ellis who showed me some of the latest convertible  Windows 8 devices that flow between the tablet and notebook form factors.



10176700.jpgTired of digging around for the cable that came with your camera? It might be time to look into a dedicated card reader. Here are three reasons why a dedicated card reader can change the way you work with your camera.




The fireworks setting. The portrait setting. The Auto setting. These super simple settings are holding you back from taking amazing snapshots because they do all the thinking for you. Get to know the advanced modes on your camera. They're easy to use. They give you more control. And the make you look like a cooler snapshooter. :smileyvery-happy:


Review: Zone of the Enders HD Collection

by Blogger ‎11-25-2012 11:06 PM - edited ‎11-26-2012 10:07 AM



Kojima Productions, the acclaimed studio behind the Metal Gear Solid franchise, has opened their vault for the re-release of two classic PlayStation 2 titles in their Zone of the Enders HD Collection. The compilation pack features completely remastered versions of the original Zone of the Enders (2001), plus the far superior Zone of the Enders: The 2nd Runner (2003), and even throws in a demo of the upcoming Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance for good measure. 


With over ten years since we first stepped into the cockpit of Jehuty, do the original games combined with a shiny coat of HD warrant a second interplanetary trip through these mecha adventures?



Tested: Breville Juicer

by Blogger on ‎11-25-2012 05:09 PM

Breville Juicer

This juicer came at a perfect time for me to review as I had caught a cold and desperately needed all things with Vitamin C. It was great to have this powerful juicer make me fresh orange juice. Once I got started I couldn’t leave it to one fruit, I added apples and persimmons. It was refreshing, and perfect for someone needing a healthy boost. Here's my review on the Breville Juicer including the good, setbacks, and the fantasy. 



[Review] Samsung WB850F 16MP Wi-Fi Point and Shoot Camera with GPS

by Blogger on ‎11-25-2012 01:46 PM - last edited on ‎12-12-2012 10:56 AM by Retired Administrator

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Connected cameras just make life easier. That’s the long and the short of it. But Samsung has done something a little different with the WB850F, adding in some powerful features to make this camera really sing.



It’s coming: Future Shop’s annual Cyber Monday Sale

by Blogger ‎11-25-2012 09:31 AM - edited ‎11-25-2012 03:28 PM

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Cyber Monday makes its third straight return to Canada thanks to


Did you know Future Shop was the first national retailer to bring Cyber Monday to Canada? It’s true. 







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