How to troubleshoot and fix your most common gadget issues
PCs, printers, smartphones, cameras, networks - your stuff will inevitably stop working. Here's how to troubleshoot and fix your most common tech issues.
If your printer is printing slowly
A handful of different factors could be slowing down your print speed. Here's what to look for.
First off, check to make sure you're not printing in a high-quality or 'best' mode, which will take longer than a default or draft mode.
Depending on what you're printing, your connection to your printer might be bottlenecking the print rate.
Wireless connections can be affected by distance from the printer, airwave interference, and physical barriers, and USB connections have narrower bandwidth than ethernet connections.
If you print run-of-the mill documents, largely text and some photos, than a wireless or USB connection should be adequate.
If you print complex or high-res graphics or have a lot of people trying to use the printer, ethernet is better suited for bigger or busier traffic.
Also, most consumer printers rely on your PC to process the print job, so if your PC's memory and processor are already heavily taxed your jobs will take longer to process.
If a printer does have its own memory (usually one designed to work in an office), check to make sure there is enough memory to handle the complexity and quantity of jobs you are sending to it.
Did problems begin after you started to print a lot more than usual?
Check the printer's monthly duty cycle to see how much it's designed to push out.
If you started off with a consumer-level printer designed to print perhaps up to a few dozen pages a day, but you are now printing a hundred or more pages a day, your old printer is probably struggling to keep up.
If you are printing 25 percent or more of the monthly duty cycle spec, then you should probably get a printer with a higher monthly duty cycle.
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