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Tech advice, part II

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Offline  Re: Tech advice, part II
#21

Posted: July 27, 2017, 9:28 AM Post
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Posts: 4699
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Microsoft Surface Pro or IPad Pro is what I would suggest for not taking both are more than just tablets and are more closer to a laptop minus the size and weight of a laptop.

The newest Surface Pro is overly expensive and if your kid likes Apple this is probably one of the rare times where Apple is cheaper than something comparable to what they are offering.

The Surface Pro is probably overkill for college so I would go with the new IPad Pro. That would be about $800 on Amazon or $900 at the Apple store.


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Offline  Re: Tech advice, part II
#22

Posted: July 27, 2017, 10:57 AM Post
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Thanks for the advice. Not looking to spend more than around $300. My son already has a laptop, so the tablet would just be a supplemental tool. Seems like there are ASUS tablets priced at around $200 that get some good reviews.

Also, on my last post I added another question I hoped someone could help answer: As I look at comparisons on Amazon there is something called Connectivity technology (which many just show as blank and others have wireless, bluetooth, wi-fi) and something called Wireless technology (which all have wi-fi and/or bluetooth). What is the difference between these two features?


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Offline  Re: Tech advice, part II
#23

Posted: July 27, 2017, 11:07 AM Post
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owbc said:
Patrick425 said:
My son is going back to school in less than 3 weeks and has hinted that a tablet would really come in handy for him. So, I have been contemplating getting him one as a "back to school" surprise. He has an iphone so I did some browsing for ipads since I thought it would be helpful if he had something that was compatible with his phone. So, hoping for some advise from others who have more knowledge about this stuff:

- Does it really matter if he has an iphone and a "non-ipad" (and probably cheaper) tablet?
- My head spun over all the different types of ipads. I don't even know what the latest model is or if it's even that important to get the latest and greatest. What is the difference between the this version and the previous version? What are the major differences between the mini and "standard" (or whatever it's called).
- If it's not that big of a deal to get a tablet that is not an ipad, does anyone have suggestions on other options?


The main thing is that you want ones compatible with a "smart" stylus which makes note taking a million times easier. I think the 'mini' size would be too small for note-taking. Otherwise it probably doesn't matter much unless he strongly prefers Apple products. The note-taking apps are available across iOS and other platforms.


My first daughter is in her third year and we purchased as Surface for her. It has a stylus and allows you to put your hand on the surface of the device while you write. It was a little pricey. She doesn't use it for writing notes that often and ends up typing the notes in instead. Many schools will allow free licenses of Office 365 as part of going to their school. Onenote would be the program to use to manage notebooks.

In the past, I have tried to use an iPad as a note taking device and it simply didn't work for me.


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Offline  Re: Tech advice, part II
#24

Posted: July 27, 2017, 1:08 PM Post
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The Weatherman
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Samurai Bucky said:
My first daughter is in her third year and we purchased as Surface for her. It has a stylus and allows you to put your hand on the surface of the device while you write. It was a little pricey. She doesn't use it for writing notes that often and ends up typing the notes in instead. Many schools will allow free licenses of Office 365 as part of going to their school. Onenote would be the program to use to manage notebooks.
In the past, I have tried to use an iPad as a note taking device and it simply didn't work for me.


I think it depends on the type of class. I took notes on the iPad with a stylus for most of graduate school using the Notability app. I liked that I could record the lectures and go back later to re-listen to important parts. These classes included lots of mathematical derivations and diagrams so it was much easier to write with a stylus than type. The notes came out very pretty, much better than paper. If my classes did not include math I might have been more inclined to type the notes.


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Offline  Re: Tech advice, part II
#25

Posted: July 27, 2017, 1:57 PM Post
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Location: Phoenix, AZ
Connectivity means does it connect to wifi (network) or does it connect to a wireless signal (same as your cell phone) plus wifi. Nearly everything has Bluetooth now if it doesn't I would be surprised.

You can also go the used route or a refurbished one if you want to save some money.


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Offline  Re: Tech advice, part II
#26

Posted: July 27, 2017, 2:49 PM Post
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The Asus ZenPad 3S 10 consistently gets good reviews and is under $300 on amazon.

If you don't need simcard support (ie: Only use it on wifi) then you can save another $25 or so.

"I wasted so much time in my life hating Juventus or A.C. Milan that I should have spent hating the Cardinals." ~kalle8

Twitter: @MKEHiker
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Offline  Re: Tech advice, part II
#27

Posted: July 29, 2017, 8:19 AM Post
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Dumb question - does a N750 WiFi router have a stronger signal/longer range than a N300?


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Offline  Re: Tech advice, part II
#28

Posted: August 21, 2017, 1:03 PM Post
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If it has more/better antennas than the 300, you can probably squeeze some more range out of it. Unfortunately, majority of wireless routers don't publish any legit details on the strength of their transmitters in their marketing. I have a Linksys 5400 due to working at a certain electronics retailer and getting a special deal, and it does get down to the underground parking at my apartment, but it has 8 adjustable antennas... [wink]


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Offline  Re: Tech advice, part II
#29

Posted: August 31, 2017, 7:05 PM Post
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nate82 said:
I would suggest adding an antenna to that thing but that is not an option with that thing.

You should have wifi throughout your house with that router but I am going to guess the antenna on that modem/router is just a piece of wire. Hopefully the wifi extenders work for you.

I purchased a new WiFi router with three antennas and "beamforming technology". I get a little better range and speed, but not much. The extender doesn't work really well either. I get decent download speed from it (5-10 Mbps, depending on how far away I am), but basically no upload. Not sure if that means it's a defect.

I think the main culprit is that it is a long rectangular masonry building with a concrete stairwell in the middle of it. The concrete stairwell blocks the WiFi signal from getting from one end to the other. Because of that, I can't place the range extender that far down the hall because it loses signal.

Does a range extender on top of a range extender work? And is there any way to set up a second WiFi router as a range extender without having an ethernet cable input? Everything I read says that you have to have an ethernet input to use a WiFi router as a range extender. Can't/don't want to run 75' of ethernet cable down my hall.

Oh, here's the fun part - I tried purchasing a second cable modem and connecting it to the cable in the bedroom; thought that would do the trick by just setting up a second WiFi router. I have internet, but it automatically goes to xFinity's activation page (you have to activate a cable modem if you purchase one yourself). But... you cannot have more than one cable modem on your account, or they will charge you double for internet.

Now let me get this straight... you can add second/third/fourth cable boxes for $10/month, but you cannot add a second cable modem without doubling what you pay for cable? Seriously??


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Offline  Re: Tech advice, part II
#30

Posted: September 09, 2017, 8:17 AM Post
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At my new work I usually have two weekend schedules per month, but of course I'd like to be able to keep up with the Packers, and maybe even the Brewers in the summer.

I checked out NFL streaming and they said morning games don't tend to get posted until 8 pm, and that's kinda late.

I thought about XM Radio, but where I am in the mountains there's no phone or internet reception, so I'm concerned there won't be any satellite reception, either.

But I'm also reading about making a vehicle into an internet hotspot with some sort of box. It seems like that would be a workable idea, but I don't know much about it at all.


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Offline  Re: Tech advice, part II
#31

Posted: September 09, 2017, 3:57 PM Post
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Posts: 4699
Location: Phoenix, AZ
LouisEly said:
nate82 said:
I would suggest adding an antenna to that thing but that is not an option with that thing.

You should have wifi throughout your house with that router but I am going to guess the antenna on that modem/router is just a piece of wire. Hopefully the wifi extenders work for you.

I purchased a new WiFi router with three antennas and "beamforming technology". I get a little better range and speed, but not much. The extender doesn't work really well either. I get decent download speed from it (5-10 Mbps, depending on how far away I am), but basically no upload. Not sure if that means it's a defect.

I think the main culprit is that it is a long rectangular masonry building with a concrete stairwell in the middle of it. The concrete stairwell blocks the WiFi signal from getting from one end to the other. Because of that, I can't place the range extender that far down the hall because it loses signal.

Does a range extender on top of a range extender work? And is there any way to set up a second WiFi router as a range extender without having an ethernet cable input? Everything I read says that you have to have an ethernet input to use a WiFi router as a range extender. Can't/don't want to run 75' of ethernet cable down my hall.

Oh, here's the fun part - I tried purchasing a second cable modem and connecting it to the cable in the bedroom; thought that would do the trick by just setting up a second WiFi router. I have internet, but it automatically goes to xFinity's activation page (you have to activate a cable modem if you purchase one yourself). But... you cannot have more than one cable modem on your account, or they will charge you double for internet.

Now let me get this straight... you can add second/third/fourth cable boxes for $10/month, but you cannot add a second cable modem without doubling what you pay for cable? Seriously??


For the modem you are basically adding a second network to your house so that is a little bit different than a cable box for TV. What I mean by this is that you are adding a second connection at the same speed that you are getting with your first connection. Unlike a TV box where you are getting the same information regardless if you have 1 or 10 with a second modem you are basically adding a new cable line.

As for your router that is concerning that you are not getting a signal throughout your house. It sounds like you are getting some interference somewhere probably from other electronics or other wifi networks in your area.

You might want to try this: https://eero.com/


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Offline  Re: Tech advice, part II
#32

Posted: September 09, 2017, 4:21 PM Post
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Posts: 4699
Location: Phoenix, AZ
GAME05 said:
At my new work I usually have two weekend schedules per month, but of course I'd like to be able to keep up with the Packers, and maybe even the Brewers in the summer.

I checked out NFL streaming and they said morning games don't tend to get posted until 8 pm, and that's kinda late.

I thought about XM Radio, but where I am in the mountains there's no phone or internet reception, so I'm concerned there won't be any satellite reception, either.

But I'm also reading about making a vehicle into an internet hotspot with some sort of box. It seems like that would be a workable idea, but I don't know much about it at all.


Vehicle hotspots wouldn't work for you as the hotspot is being created by a connection to a cell tower (usually). Verizon is usually the provider for this.


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