PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — You’ve heard them all: leaving your laptop plugged into the charger will harm your computer, or the more the mega pixels, the better the picture.
In this technology age, there are so many new gadgets out there and there are so many myths that go along with them.
KDKA’s John Shumway talks to some experts to expose some of the “top tech myths.”
No. 1: The more you pay for an HDMI cable, the better your picture and sound quality will be.
“That is one of the greatest scams in the history of consumer electronics,” CNET’s Dan Ackerman said. “HDMI cables are basically all the same.”
Ackerman says they may not be pretty, but Amazon’s HDMI cables are less than $10 for about six feet.
“For most people, you just need a couple of feet of HDMI cable,” Ackerman said. “Just get the cheap Amazon one, or if the store has a house brand, get that.”
No. 2: 1080P is far superior to 720P when it comes to televisions.
What do the folks at Consumer Reports say?
“We actually find there are some pretty good sets that are 720P, and you’re not likely to see a whole lot of difference in a smaller set,” Paul Reynolds, Consumer Reports’ electronics editor, said.
The key here is smaller set.
“So, if you have a Blu-ray or DVD in an upscale DVD drive, and you plug it into a 1080 or 720 and it’s a 32- or 36- or 42-inch, not a gigantic TV, there’s a good chance you’re not going to notice the difference,” says Ackerman. “They are both going to look fine.”
No. 3: The more megapixels, the better the quality of picture you will get.
“There are other things now that really impact the image quality more than that,” said Ackerman.
“There’s the lens, the processing of the image – there are a lot of other things that go on in the quality of the camera or phone that are probably going to mean a lot more to the quality of that image than the megapixels are,” Reynolds said.
No. 4: More bars means better service.
That’s not true according to PCWorld, which studied cell phones and found more bars only means you are better connected to a cell tower.
But if that tower is in heavy use or your carrier’s equipment is lax in handing a heavy demand, your call could be fuzzy or drop and data could be slow.
No. 5: If I leave my laptop plugged in all the time, it will kill the battery.
“These days you can generally leave devices plugged in and not damage the battery. In fact, the discharge-recharge cycle can be more damaging,” Ackerman said.
No. 6: When buying a computer, I should install anti-virus software.
“Fortunately, most Windows machines all come with Microsoft’s built in anti-virus program, which is fine for everyday use,” Ackerman says. “There are also some free versions like AVG Free and Avast, which you can download if you really feel like it.”
CNET says most hacking comes from Internet social interactions – responding to emails or invitation on social networking sites.
And, as for not needing anti-virus software for Apple products, Ackerman says, “That’s less true now, but still actually pretty true.”
“If Apple sees a problem, they’ll do their own software patch and it will go into the operating system to block the problem,” he adds.