Windows 7 lag when using dual monitors with different refresh rates

I have recently installed Windows 7 Ultimate x64 with Service Pack 1, coming from Vista (in which I had no problems). After the installation, the first thing I did was install the graphics card driver for my AMD Radeon HD 6870 1GB card. I then noticed that when I drag windows around the desktop, scroll through windows, and especially drag windows from the secondary monitor to the primary, there was very noticeable lag. However, there was no lag in games – just the Windows desktop and its windows. This was a completely fresh install. I have dual monitors – the primary is a 19″ widescreen Acer X191W, and the secondary is a 15″ Sony LCD. I am using them in extended desktop mode.

What happened at first was Windows locked the primary monitor to 75Hz, and would not let me change it to 60Hz.  For some reason the first time I installed the video drivers, I think there was a conflict with the default Windows display drivers, causing my main monitor to be stuck at 75Hz. I had to uninstall and wipe the display driver to reinstall it, after which the option to set it to 60Hz appeared. I used ATIMAN Uninstaller to wipe the driver. After setting the display to 60Hz, the lag disappeared completely.

So it seemed there was a conflict somewhere with my specific hardware configuration that caused lag when two monitors were set to different refresh rates. However, then I tried to recreate the problem on a different system. This system has a Radeon HD 4870 and different dual displays. It had the same problem when one of the monitors was set to refresh at 60Hz and the other at 75Hz. And again, putting them both to 60Hz resolved the lag issue.

I could not find any information about this issue online. It can’t be the monitors as between the two systems there were four different monitors that had the same problem. It can’t be the hardware, because my computer has a 6870 and the other has a 4870. It can’t be interfering software, as this was a clean install of Windows. It has to be either the AMD driver, or an issue with Windows.

The point of this post is to let people know how to fix this issue, as well as ask if anyone else has experienced this, especially with a different graphics card. It took me two weeks to find the cause of this. I haven’t found anyone online with this issue. Both the video cards I tested should handle different refresh rates without a problem. Although I have fixed the issue, I still want to know what caused it.

Sticker Mule Review

Have you ever wanted to get some custom stickers made for your website, business, band, or any other reason for which you might make a sticker? There are plenty of sticker companies on the internet to choose from, but a lot of these sticker companies require huge bulk orders of a thousand stickers or more. However, there is one company that lets you buy just the right amount of custom stickers, at a reasonable price, with great service. This company is Sticker Mule.

Sticker Mule, first of all, has a very good looking and easy to use website. Second, they are now the official sticker provider of Reddit. They offer free shipping on all orders, and have many different types of stickers to choose from. Your stickers can be different shapes, die cut, kiss cut, bumper stickers, sticker sheets, and even custom iPhone, iPad, iPod, Kindle, and Macbook laptop skins. For this review, I ordered some Reddit stickers, as well as a 50 pack of custom die cut stickers.

Choosing the type of sticker that I wanted was easy, due to the awesome website layout. For the custom stickers, I uploaded a PSD file, wrote a comment to let them know how I wanted it cut, and the next day I got a proof in my email showing exactly how the sticker would look if it was cut that way. I accepted the proof, and got a shipping time estimate for 13 days. After 7 days, I got an email with a UPS tracking number saying my order had shipped. It arrived on the 14th (and I had received my proof on the 1st) in a very sturdy envelope. Considering these were custom die cut stickers, in addition to the popular Reddit stickers, I think that this is a very reasonable time for order fulfillment and shipping.

I could tell right away that the stickers were printed on very high quality paper. They are not glossy, and have a very smooth matte surface. The sticker itself as well as the backing is relatively very thick, meaning you won’t accidentally bend the stickers or rip off a piece, such as the Reddit alien’s antenna. The resolution is superb, with no imperfections visible. There is no color bleed, and the colors were reproduced perfectly from the PSD I had uploaded. The cut was very clean and precise, and followed my outline exactly. I was very surprised at how heavy the stickers were due to the heavy duty paper used. According to the website, the stickers are fade and water resistant. This would take too long to test, but I have no doubts about this claim. In fact, I am going to put one of the Reddit stickers on my motorcycle helmet, which will be wet from rain periodically.

The photos of all the stickers can be seen below. I tried my best to reproduce the colors, and I think the photos come close, but they are not exact. The imperfections visible in the photos are not visible when actually looking at the stickers, even if looking closely. The camera shows things that you won’t be able to see with your eyes, so try to ignore that. Apart from that, as you can see in the photos, the ink quality is amazing. I am very satisfied with my order, and if I need some more stickers I will definitely order from Sticker Mule. The prices are reasonable due to the high quality, and if you are trying to spread your brand with stickers, these will definitely do the job very well. I highly recommend Sticker Mule for all your custom sticker needs, as well as for Reddit stickers. These are awesome stickers with superb quality. Check out the photos below.

Read moreSticker Mule Review

What headphones should you get if you wear glasses?

If you have prescription eyeglasses and have ever tried wearing over the ear headphones for extended periods of time, you probably know how painful it can get after an hour or more. The headphones will put pressure on your glasses frame, which will dig into your head and create pressure points. This might prevent you from trying over the ear headphones again. However, there is a solution that doesn’t involve switching to in ear headphones.

Let’s assume the standard budget for most people for decent headphones is $50. So which headphones should you get specifically for wearing over your eyeglasses? Koss PortaPro.

As you can see in the photo, they are pretty much designed for people who wear glasses. The top foam rests above your glasses frame, while the headphone part itself goes over your ear. The headphones don’t touch your glasses at all (although that might depend on the glasses).

The headphones easily adjust in size to accommodate any head size, and there is a very cool switch on each side that adjusts pressure of the upper part of the foam. There are three pressure levels, and there is a noticeable difference between each pressure. You can distribute the pressure between your head and your ear however you want. This is seriously not a gimmick, it really does make a difference.

The Koss PortaPro headphones have a retro look to them. The style might not be for everyone, but you might grow to like it. The headphones do look better in person than they do in the photos found online. The band that goes over your head has a very nice brushed metallic finish. The headphones fold up very nicely and lock up with a small hook that’s built into the bottom of the head band, right under the top foam part.

Sound quality is awesome on the Koss PortaPro as well. You can find the specs on their website, linked above. The whole sound range sounds really nice. The bass is very good for this type of headphone. Compared to the Sennheiser HD 202 headphones, the Koss PortaPro sound better in pretty much every way. The bass on the Sennheisers might have been a bit louder, but it sounds better on the PortaPros, almost as if less muffled and more clear.

Overall, the Koss PortaPro headphones are an amazing buy for their price. They can be had for around $35 online if you know where to look, such as on Amazon. For this price, if you need headphones that don’t cause pain or discomfort while wearing prescription eyeglasses, look no further. The Koss PortaPro headphones will give you great sound quality, amazing comfort, great price, and a cool retro look. I have had these headphones for about two or three years now, and they have held up great. I have yet to find a better pair of headphones, comfort wise, for wearing with glasses.

How to upgrade memory on an Acer Aspire One

My Acer Aspire One came with 1GB of memory, and after installing Windows 7 on it, that 1GB has become inadequate. I bought 2GB of 800MHz DDR2 memory on Newegg for just over $20. This is great value for the money, and improved the overall performance of the netbook significantly. This quick guide will show you how to upgrade the RAM on an Acer Aspire One AO751h, but it might apply to many other laptops as well.

NOTE: Follow this guide at your own risk. I am not responsible for any damages or injuries caused by following these instructions. Your laptop may differ from mine.

1. Buy the correct RAM for your laptop. For my Acer, I bought one 2GB stick of Corsair 800MHz DDR2. Make sure you’re buying laptop memory, not desktop memory. The laptop RAM is obviously a lot smaller.

2. Shut down the laptop. Disconnect your power supply and remove the battery. Ground yourself by touching something metal. I touched my steel computer case. This should dissipate any static electricity that is on you.

3. Get a small phillips screwdriver and unscrew the two screws holding the memory bay on. Then gently pry it off – it is still held in by plastic clips.

4. Remove your RAM by pulling the two tabs on the sides apart, and pulling the RAM up and out. Be gentle.

5. Install the new RAM by pulling the two tabs on the sides apart, and gently inserting the RAM into the slot. Once it starts going in, release the tabs, and when fully inserted the memory module should snap into place.

6. Screw the cover back on and push down on it a bit to get it to clip in. Reinstall your battery and power on the laptop. Right click on “Computer” on your desktop or in your start menu, and click “Properties”. If you see 2GB of memory indicated, the install was a success!