November 18, 2010

Have electronics questions? Kim Komando has the answers


OSKALOOSA — Q. My son is stationed in Okinawa. He has a Japanese cell phone plan. What is an inexpensive way to make a voice call to Okinawa?

A. You can make free calls if both of you have computers with Skype. You can also get a Skype app for many smart phones. However, in both cases you need a decent Internet connection. You can also use Google Voice for inexpensive international calls. Calls to Japanese mobile phones are currently 11 cents a minute. Visit Komando.com/news for links to Skype and Google Voice. Finally, you can use a prepaid calling card. These usually offer inexpensive rates. Just make sure to check the maintenance fees. And be sure you can place calls to Japan with the card.

Q. I want to build a gaming computer. But it should cost less than $1,500. What components should I buy?

A. You will want a high-end Intel Core i5 processor. A mid-range Core i7 will work as well. You also want at least 4 gigabytes of RAM. Get Windows 7 64-bit Home Premium or Ultimate. The graphics card is also important. Either an AMD or Nvidia card will work. A mid-range card is fine for most games; expect to spend about $150. A card in the $250 range will be more future-proof. Your power supply will need to handle all of these components. Get at least a 550 watt supply to be on the safe side. Other components will depend on your budget and needs.

Copyright 2010, WestStar TalkRadio Network. All rights reserved.

Kim Komando hosts the nation’s largest talk radio show about consumer electronics, computers and the Internet. To get the podcast or find the station nearest you, visit: http://www.komando.com/listen. To subscribe to Kim’s free e-mail newsletters, sign-up at: http://www.komando.com/newsletters.


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