Listen to this article

We continue extolling the virtues of quality, even if J.D. Power fails to award us for the effort. Many people lucky enough to remain employed now work online. You may spend your days in Zoom conferences and Skype meetings. I remain amazed at how many PBS reporters look and sound terrible when reporting from 青鹏棋牌. Here’s a primer on how to look and sound your best online.

Upgrade to the fastest broadband internet connection you can afford. The more bandwidth, the better everything works. Nearly all internet service providers now offer 100 mbps for a reasonable cost, and many offer 1 gbps (1 gig) for a bit more. Go for it.

There’s no use paying for a super-fast internet connection if you use WiFi to connect your computer. Whenever possible, plug directly into your router using its ethernet port(s). That delivers the full benefit of fast broadband. If you lack an ethernet jack in the room where you work, install one. There are installers who don gloves, masks and Tyvek suits who will come to your 青鹏棋牌. Fees vary depending upon the layout and construction of your 青鹏棋牌, but installation costs generally range from $100-$300. A hardwired internet connection not only justifies the expense in speed and quality, but also privacy. Even with an encrypted WiFi signal, hackers can eavesdrop. Whether you’re Skyping with the kids or grandparents, or performing mission critical work for your employer, increase security with a hardwired ethernet connection.

Buy a good router. Usually these start at $100 and up, depending on frills. A WiFi mesh system provides more even and usually faster WiFi throughout the house. A good mesh system costs about $200. Most of the cost of a router involves its WiFi capability, range and quality.

Conversely, if your current router works well and satisfies you, then postpone purchasing a new model until a year from now. The FCC just approved a new WiFi band as an adjunct to the new WiFi 6 standard. Routers with the new band will be designated WiFi6e. While WiFi 6 routers, which offer potentially increased range and signal quality, will become available at the end of this year, hold out for the WiFi 6e, which really improves performance from far greater bandwidth and scores of new channels, which lessens interference between neighbors.

As the current crisis rapidly turned working from 青鹏棋牌 from an option to a necessity, people lucky enough to own good laptops found them essential. Most desktop computers lack cameras and microphones, which are standard in laptops. Unlike with budget smartphones, the afterthought cameras and microphones built into laptops deliver mediocre quality. If you’ve noticed, most laptop manufacturers fail to advertise the quality of those components.

Thus, whether for desktop or to improve your laptop, buy an aftermarket quality combination HD camera/microphone. It simply clips to the top of your screen or stands on a tiny tripod and plugs into your computer with a standard USB cable. Your computer automatically recognizes it.

According to most experts, the best value is the Logitech C-920, which supposedly retails for about $80, if you can find one. Nearly all of the Logitech camera-microphones are sold out from every vendor. There are various similar devices offered, but their quality varies. The reason for this breakdown in the supply chain comes not merely from increased demand, but most of these small products arrive here from China青鹏棋牌 in the cargo hold of passenger aircraft, of which there are extremely few. These products await space in cargo aircraft or spend weeks crossing the Pacific by ship. Apple pays a premium to import its newest i青鹏棋牌Phone SE. It can afford to charter an entire cargo plane.

Whether using a built-in or aftermarket camera/microphone, adjust your computer’s settings for the best performance. Be sure the lighting in your room faces you, not the camera.

Rich Warren, who lives in the Champaign area, is a longtime reviewer of consumer electronics. Email him at hifiguy@volo.net.