December 11, 2017 CuttingEdgeTech

The holidays are a great time for laptop deals, but with only weeks left in the season time is running out. Not coincidentally, today is “Green Monday”—a term coined by eBay for the last Monday that’s at least 10 days before Christmas. (Otherwise known as the day when you still have a good amount of time to receive shipped packages.)On this greenest of Green Mondays, we’ve pulled together the top laptop deals available: These options range from a fancy gaming laptop to an ultra-budget conscious clamshell and points in between. We’ll be updating this article from time to time as deals…

December 11, 2017 CuttingEdgeTech

Avid Media Composer First is the free version of one of Hollywood’s most popular film and TV editing programs. It offers many of the same features you’ll find in the pro version, but exporting is limited to 1080p resolution, and it maxes out at four video tracks and eight audio tracks. If you have the patience to grapple with its complexity, it’s excellent software for learning professional video editing skills.Getting started with Avid Media Composer First is hard. The download and installation process is very long, and you have to create and sign into an online account to launch the…

December 11, 2017 CuttingEdgeTech

When publishers give away games, it often feels like the digital equivalent of a box marked “Free!” on the side of the road—inevitably you open it up to find a VHS copy of Captain Ron, a pair of ripped sweatpants, and some scratched-up Neil Diamond records. Case in point: Last week Deep Silver gave away copies of Homefront and like…why?But occasionally a freebie comes along that’s actually worth nabbing. Cue Ubisoft, which this week is giving out free copies of Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag—either the best of the Assassin’s Creeds or, if you’ve been in this a long time,…

December 11, 2017 CuttingEdgeTech

Lowe’s has a nice deal today on an Anker Power Bank charger. For $17, you can get a 10,400 mAH Anker portable charger from the big-box store. This is about $11 cheaper than the price you can find on Amazon, and $10 off Lowe’s usual price.This charger comes with two USB ports, and supports high-speed charging via Anker’s PowerIQ and VoltageBoost technologies. Anker claims this Power Bank can charge the iPhone 6 up to four times, the Samsung Galaxy S6 up to three times, or the iPad Air once. Each port pumps out a maximum of 2.4 amps each. The…

December 11, 2017 CuttingEdgeTech

If you bought an HP laptop any time in the last five years, it could be tracking your every key stroke. Over the weekend HP revealed that nearly 500 of its notebooks dating as far back as 2012 shipped with a secret keylogger installed. Alongside the announcement, HP released driver updates to eradicate the software on affected laptops.Security researcher Michael Myng discovered the keylogger when probing the Synaptics touchpad software on an HP laptop. HP’s security bulletin says the “potential security vulnerability” affects all laptops with “certain versions of Synaptics touchpad drivers”—not necessarily just HP models. The keylogger is disabled…

December 11, 2017 CuttingEdgeTech

If you haven’t remodeled in recent years, you might be surprised to find that new canister-style lights no longer include the traditional recessed receptacle that accepts a screw-in bulb. Rather, the light fixture itself is static, including a ring of LEDs inside a sealed module. When the LEDs eventually die (after 10 years or so), you just replace the whole thing rather than removing and screwing in a new light bulb.What’s wrong with the old way? These new designs are considerably smaller than old canisters, are easier to install, and generally look better. (It also keeps homeowners or renters from…

December 11, 2017 CuttingEdgeTech

The best free video editing software can be surprisingly good. The choices vary widely and include include scaled-down, trial versions of professional suites, open-source alternatives with a plethora of features, and simple applications aimed at home video creators. Our top picks will be functional for many users, across many use cases.If you’re willing to spend a little money, check out our reviews of paid consumer video editing software. Typically, those are easier to use than the free ones here thanks to great support and tutorial libraries and more refined interfaces, but they don’t necessarily have more features.To read this article…

December 11, 2017 CuttingEdgeTech

Smaller form-factor PCs typically go one of two ways: First, you can prioritize the small part of the equation. This leaves you with something beautifully tiny, but at the cost of future upgrades—space-saving comes with the caveat of proprietary and non-replaceable parts. (See: Alienware Alpha.) Or you can prioritize future upgrades, which typically means a larger and less aesthetically pleasing machine.The MSI Trident V3 is the rare machine that can do both—at least to some extent.MSI Trident V3 vs. consoles It really is tiny. Scale can be tough to judge in photographs, but at 13.6 by 9.2 by 2.8 inches,…