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Parasound Halo P 7 dual-mode analog preamp

High-end AV specialists Parasound have announced their latest preamp, the Halo P 7, which is intended to cater to multichannel music and surround sound from Blu-ray, DVD-Audio, and SACD players as well as to traditional stereo sources.  To do so, it incorporates both 2-channel and 7.1-channel analog preamps, with a range of balanced XLR and RCA stereo inputs and outputs.

Owners can adjust left-right / front-rear balance, give each input a custom name and carry out gain-matching across all 10 inputs, including a front panel PMP input. Parasound claim the Halo P 7’s noise floor is 10dB below that of a typical AV receiver, helped by a low-noise MM/MC phono input and remote tone control. It also has an RS-232 socket, discrete IR codes, IR repeater input/loop jacks and three DC triggers for use with a distributed audio or home automation system.

Best of all, perhaps, is the volume knob, which Parasound describe as having “an unusually solid, silky smooth operation”. You can’t ask for much more than that. The Halo P7 is available from dealers now, priced at around $2,000.

Press Release:

Parasound Delivers Purist Analog Preamp for Stereo and Multichannel Audio in its Halo Family of High End Products

SAN FRANCISCO (8/19/08) – Parasound, the preeminent manufacturer of high-end audio components, has introduced an audio preamplifier designed for sound purists seeking superior low-noise performance from classic stereo sources as well as multichannel music and movies from Blu-ray, DVD-Audio, and SACD players. It will be marketed in the company’s high-end Halo product line.

The Parasound Halo P 7 is both a two-channel and 7.1-channel analog preamplifier that is designed to combine outstanding audio performance while providing a flexible and easy-to-use interface. It will satisfy the most demanding two-channel audio purist who also enjoys multichannel music and movies. The Halo P 7 is also a lower-cost alternative to a surround processor if your TV can switch video inputs and you own multi-channel analog sources such as a DVD player, SACD player or Blu-ray player with multichannel analog outputs. The analog bass management for stereo sources makes subwoofer and small speaker integration easy. There is also a volume control bypass mode for users who wish to use their home theater receiver to decode digital sources. The Halo P 7 can also switch 1080p HDMI sources when it is linked to the optional Zhd HDMI switcher.

“With stereo or surround sound, silence is golden,” said Richard Schram, Parasound’s president and founder. “With its exceptional parts quality, heavy duty construction, outboard HDMI switching option, and balanced XLR input and output connections, Halo P 7’s noise floor is a full 10 dB below that of a typical AV receiver, and you don’t achieve performance like that with off-the-shelf parts. Our engineering team has worked miracles to keep this level of quality at an affordable price point.”

The Halo P 7 user can adjust left-right / front-rear balance, make custom input names and match the gain for all 10 inputs, including a front panel MP3 input. Versatility includes balanced XLR connections, a low-noise MM/MC phono input and remote tone control. It provides RS-232 control, discrete IR codes, IR repeater input/loop jacks and three DC triggers invite system integration.

The Parasound Halo P 7 has a very simple and elegant front panel operation and style, with just two buttons and one knob to control most of its functions. The controls are of extremely high quality, and the control knob has an unusually solid, silky smooth operation, comparable to the focus ring on a high quality camera.

The Parasound Halo P 7 is currently available from Parasound Halo dealers at a suggested retail price of $2000.

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Dual Boot Windows 11 And Windows 7

Dual Boot Windows 11 and Windows 7 [Easy Steps]




If you want to dual boot Windows 11 and Windows 7, note from the start that the new

OS requires a TPM to work.

Dual booting two Windows systems is simple, and you just need to create a separate partition for the other operating system.

To properly install Windows 11 after Windows 7, feel free to join the Windows Insider Program.

Windows 11 is an interesting operating system indeed, but some users are still reluctant to make the transition, while others are determined to use Windows 7 forever.

However, according to our survey, Windows 7 users are excited about Windows 11 and they may switch to it.

If you’re ready for this change as well, in this guide we’re going to show you how to properly dual boot Windows 11 and Windows 7 on your PC.

What are Windows 11’s requirements?

CPU: 1GHz or more, 2 cores or more, compatible 64-bit processor

RAM: 4GB or more

Storage: 64GB or more

Firmware: UEFI, Secure Boot capable

TPM: Trusted Platform Module 2.0

Graphics card: DirectX 12 compatible with WDDM 2.0 driver

Display: 720p 9-inch display

Windows 11 requirements have been known for a while, and many users are unhappy because Windows 11 requires a TPM to work.

Many of them reported getting the same error saying This PC can’t run Windows 11 because they don’t have the TPM chip installed. Be sure to check our TPM and Windows 11 guide for more information.

Also, you must verify if your CPU is supported by Windows 11 since some older processors won’t work with Windows 11.

How can I dual boot Windows 11 and Windows 7?

Install Windows 7 after Windows 11

1. Create a Windows 7 partition on your PC

2. Download Windows 7 ISO and create a bootable drive


Microsoft isn’t hosting Windows 7 anymore, so you’ll have to get it from a reliable third-party source.

If you have Windows 7 DVD you can use it to create an ISO file using specialized software to convert files to ISO. Or if you have a DVD drive, you can use the DVD to install Windows 7 directly from it.

3. Boot from the Windows 7 flash drive and install Windows 7

After doing that, you’ll be able to dual boot Windows 11 and Windows 7 without any problems.

Install Windows 11 after Windows 7

Expert tip:

This process is almost identical to creating a partition on Windows 11, so we’ll keep it brief.

2. Create a bootable Windows 10 drive


We’re using Windows 10 ISO since Windows 11 ISO isn’t officially available for download yet.

3. Boot from the Windows 10 installation media and install Windows 11

4. Join the Windows Insider Program and install Windows 11

After doing that, the dual boot for Windows 11 and Windows 7 should be working without any problems.

Should I keep using Windows 7?

Microsoft isn’t maintaining Windows 7 since the beginning of 2023, so the system is out of date and vulnerable. However, you can still keep it safe using Windows 7 antivirus software.

Another problem is that many developers aren’t making software for Windows 7 anymore, so your favorite apps might not work on this OS.

As you can see, Microsoft and other developers are ready to drop it entirely, so you shouldn’t use it as your main operating system.

This might be the right time to consider Windows 11, but you should know that upgrading to Windows 11 from Windows 7 will require a clean install.

How can I set the default operating system if I use dual boot?

We hope that you found this guide informative and that you managed to dual boot Windows 11 and Windows 7 without any problems on your PC.

Keep in mind that Windows 7 isn’t supported anymore, and you shouldn’t use it as your everyday operating system, but you can enjoy it in dual boot mode, especially if you want it to run older applications or games.

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Fix Common Halo Wars Definitive Edition Errors

Fix common Halo Wars Definitive Edition errors [Windows 10/11]






Try Outbyte Driver Updater to resolve driver issues entirely:

This software will simplify the process by both searching and updating your drivers to prevent various malfunctions and enhance your PC stability. Check all your drivers now in 3 easy steps:

Download Outbyte Driver Updater.

Launch it on your PC to find all the problematic drivers.

OutByte Driver Updater has been downloaded by


readers this month.

Halo Wars: Definitive Edition launched as an Early Access game on Xbox One and Windows 10 PCs on December 20 last year, bringing fans of the real-time strategy video game to the origin of the war between the Covenant and UNSC. The game generally runs seamlessly on both the Xbox One and Windows 10 platforms, but users still encounter various issues from time to time.

For this how-to article, we took the time to dig into the troubleshooting methods for some of the most common game issues on Windows 10.

How to fix Halo Wars: Definitive Edition bugs 1. Error while downloading the latest game configuration data

If you have encountered this issue, chances are that online features of the game are limited. Therefore, you need to download the latest update to the Halo Wars: Definitive Edition. To do so, quit the game and check for updates. Install the updates and restart the game.

2. Trouble with accessing content from the server

Some players might see a prompt message that says they cannot access content from the server because it is currently unavailable. The error could mean an issue with the game’s online services or with your Internet connection. Check Halo Waypoint for server details to troubleshoot the error. If the server is working properly, look into the Xbox Live service status.

3. Error connecting to the Xbox Live services

This trouble means the Ethernet cable is not plugged or network connection is down. To solve the issue, see to it that your Ethernet cable is plugged in to your PC. Otherwise, check the Xbox Live service status.

4. Xbox Live services and gameplay session connection error

Expert tip:

Before you begin troubleshooting your connection, check for service alerts on the Xbox Live Status page, or see if an Xbox Live service alert appears at the top of this page.

If there is a service alert, wait until the service is back up and running before you start troubleshooting.

Note: If you’re trying to connect your Xbox One console to Xbox Live for the first time, go to the Xbox One First-Time Connection Solution for help setting up (and if necessary, troubleshooting) your network connection.

Troubleshooting for Xbox One connection issues is divided into two general categories:

Can’t connect: The console is unable to detect or connect to your home network, or can’t establish an Internet connection, or can’t connect to Xbox Live. All of these types of issues fall under network connection errors.

Poor connection quality: Although the console is able to connect to Xbox Live, there are connection quality issues, such as poor streaming quality, random disconnects, or slow performance. All of these types of issues fall under multiplayer connection errors (even if multiplayer gaming is not involved).

Describe the general type of network connection issue you are experiencing. If your Xbox One console is unable to connect to Xbox Live, the first step is to run the network connection test on your console. If this test is successful, your console will connect to Xbox Live. Otherwise, you’ll see an error message, which should help to identify the specific issue that’s preventing your console from connecting.

To run the network connection test, follow these steps:

Scroll left from Home to open the guide.

Select Settings.

Select Network.

Select Network settings. Any known outages will appear in the middle of the screen.

On the right side of the Network settings screen, select Test network connection.

Note: If your Xbox One console is unable to detect your wireless network, it won’t be able to run the network connection test. In this case, go to the Xbox One Wireless Network Connection Solution to troubleshoot this issue.

If the connection test is successful, your console will connect to Xbox Live. If the connection test generates an error message, select NO: I GOT AN ERROR MESSAGE below to go to the Xbox One Network Connection Error Solution, and then select the appropriate error message to troubleshoot that specific connection issue.

Xbox One also offers a number of different solutions in its support page that address various network connection quality problems. Choose a specific type of issue to locate the appropriate solution. If the solutions offered are not found in the selection, choose “Other/Not Sure”.

5. Fatal Error! Graphics Card is below minimum specs

This error requires you to update the graphics card or driver to the version that supports DirectX 12 Feature Level 11.1. To perform the update, press and hold the Windows logo key and R to open the Run dialog box. Then type “dxdiag” and hit Enter to launch the DirectX Diagnostic Tool. Find the DirectX version listed on the System tab in the System Information window.

If you have found other issues with Halo Wars: Definitive Edition and their troubleshooting methods, share them with us!


Still experiencing troubles? Fix them with this tool:


Some driver-related issues can be solved faster by using a tailored driver solution. If you’re still having problems with your drivers, simply install OutByte Driver Updater and get it up and running immediately. Thus, let it update all drivers and fix other PC issues in no time!

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Ticwatch Pro Review: Innovative Dual

Our Verdict

There’s ups and downs when it comes to the Ticwatch Pro. For starters, the design leaves a lot to be desired and the watch will be too heavy and chunky for some. However, we love the innovative dual-screen design so you can easily get information with the basic LCD panel and then use the OLED display like normal the rest of the time. This works better outdoors, saves battery and means you still have a functioning watch when the battery is too low. Performance isn’t the best and we found step counting a bit out of whack. That said, if you want something cheaper than many rivals with GPS, NFC and a heart rate monitor then this could be a good choice.

The number of new smartwatches being launched has decreased a lot of the last year or so. The Apple Watch may be hard to beat but there are still fresh devices hitting the market occasionally. This Ticwatch Pro is just one and has an innovative dual-screen design. Here’s our full review.

Ticwatch Pro: Price

Smartwatches come in a large range of prices so you can spend under £100 or splash out thousands, too.

In the UK and US, the watch is an Amazon Prime exclusive ( get a free trial here) until 15 August and will then be a general exclusive at Amazon until 30 September. Order it here in the UK, and here in the US.

The Ticwatch Pro is £219/$249 so it’s not exactly a budget wearable but it’s still affordable. If you are looking for something cheaper, we’ve recently reviewed the £145 Ticwatch E and £150 Ticwatch Sport.

Some rivals include the Samsung Gear Sport, £299, and  Huawei Watch 2, £329 – so this is a cheaper option.

Ticwatch Pro: Design and Build

Whether you should buy a smartwatch significantly depends on whether you like the style and design of it. We can’t tell you what to like but we can explain what’s on offer here.

The Ticwatch Pro is bigger and chunkier than the other models we’ve reviewed from the firm. It’s a whopping 12.6mm thick and weighs 77g including the strap. This isn’t a watch for those with a small wrist.

It’s large shiny metal bezel (also available in black) is the striking feature, adorned with numbers and lines. The bezel doesn’t rotate and there are two metal buttons on the side which are easy to use.

The most interesting things is invisible and relates to the screen – we’ll explain all below.

It’s also metal at the back but sandwiched in-between is a boring nylon section which apparently covers carbon fibre. We’d rather see the carbon fibre!

Like many smartwatches, the Ticwatch Pro is IP68 rated so it’s full dust- and waterproof. You can, according to the firm, submerge it in water up to 1.5m for up to 30 minutes – swimming is not recommended, though.

It’s normal to have a quick release strap but it’s unusual to find a hybrid combination of materials. The strap is leather on the outside and silicone on the back where it makes contact with your skin. We weren’t sure about this at first but it’s something that’s grown on us.

The watch snaps into the magnetic charging dock nicely, but the dock itself is like many we’ve seen as isn’t heavy enough to stay put on a flat surface so you might want to stick it down somehow.

Overall, the Ticwatch Pro is a bit of a let down in this area with most rivals on the market offering better design and build. It is cheaper, though.

Ticwatch Pro: Specs and Features

The most interesting thing about the Ticwatch Pro is that it has two screens. You’ll struggle to find them because they’re actually layered on top of each other.

Like many smartwatches, the device has an AMOLED screen. It’s 1.4in with a decent resolution of 400×400. However, the clever thing is that a TN LCD display sits on top. This is patent pending.

This means the watch can be used in two different modes: ‘Smart Mode’ which uses the AMOLED screen, and ‘Essential Mode’ which uses the TN layer.

So when you’re using the Ticwatch Pro in its entirety with Wear OS, you’ll be using the bottom AMOLED screen, but when you’re not the LCD display is there to show information like the time, date and step count.

It means you have to wake up the power-hungry OLED for those basics. A small niggle is that we found the full-blown screen to timeout too quickly and there’s no way to adjust it in the settings.

The firm says a future update will add things like distance traveled, calories burned, speed and cadence.

It creates an always-on sort of feature but also means you can still use the watch when the battery is too low to power the full colour screen. So despite having a 415mAh battery, you can use the Ticwatch Pro for up to 30 days if you just use the basic screen.

In general use, we found battery life using a combination of the screens to be around four or five days which is pretty good. The second display means you’re not left with a useless lump of watch on your wrist which is a real boon and its easier to read outdoors.

Onto more boring specs, which don’t vary much in the smartwatch world. The Ticwatch Pro has a pretty standard combination of a Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 2100 processor, 512MB of RAM and 4GB of storage. The latter means you can store music as well as apps.

The watch also has Bluetooth 4.2, 11b/g/n Wi-Fi and NFC so you can use it for Google Pay.

As well as a bunch of the usual sensors, the Ticwatch Pro has both GPS and an optical heart rate monitor. They work well in general but the step counting can be a bit generous, often adding around 20-30 steps when we only did 10.

With Wear OS (version 1.3 here) the device is just like using other ones with Google’s operating system really. There’s not the same level of diversity when compared to phones running Android. It runs ok on the Ticwatch Pro but opening some apps can take a little while.

It’s a shame to find only a handful of different watch faces but you can download any of thousands from the store.

The main draw here apart from the dual-screen tech is fitness, hence the hybrid strap. There’s a confusing amount of pre-loaded apps to choose from though with both Ticwatch and Google. The list includes: Fit, Fit Workout, Fitness, Health, Heart Rate and Step Ranking so it’s hard to know where to start.

What’s no obvious is that the Ticwatch ones utilise the basic display where Google’s do not. This means you can get info during a session easier and the battery drain isn’t as bad.

There are plenty of other apps so you can use the watch for far more than just fitness and download whatever you want from the store.

Specs Ticwatch Pro: Specs

Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 2100 processor


4GB storage

1.4in AMOLED screen (400×400, 287ppi)

FSTN LCD display (top layer)



Heart-rate monitor



Magnetic Sensor

PPG Heart Rate sensor

Ambient Light Sensor

Low Latency Off-Body Sensor

415mAh rechargeable battery

Bluetooth 4.2

802.11 b/g/n

IP68 water resistance

45mm diameter, 12.6mm thick


How Android P Gestures Differ From Oreo’s Button

By now, you must have gotten accustomed to smartphone companies plucking the best features from their competitors and either blatantly re-implementing them in their original form or making some tweaks to (mostly) improve the features in question.

Over the past few months, we’ve seen lots of phones arriving with a notched display and Face unlock, features that emulate Apple’s iPhone X. Android P has even welcomed this idea by including support for display screens of various form factors, notably the notch. These are cool additions, but they’re mostly hardware-related, which is one area Google doesn’t thrive, yet.

Check out:

While Apple is one of the best when it comes to smartphone hardware, it’s not your best bet when looking for regular software redesigns and introduction of new features every time a new version of iOS is released. But with iOS 11, the iPhone maker did introduce a new and what is proving to be a game-changing feature on iPhone X dubbed gestures.

To quash away any suggestions that Google copied gestures from iPhone X, VP of Engineering for Android, Dave Burke, was quick to point out that this is the result of over a year’s work. As you may know, the iPhone X came to fruition in September 2023.

The future of navigation on Android phones

The introduction of gestures in Android P represents the future of navigation on Android phones. For years, the system has been about buttons, but with Apple having already made the switch, Google wasn’t gonna sit around and become the laughing stock.

The new gesture-totting home button is here to do all that the current Home, Recents, and [hopefully] Back buttons are doing on Android Oreo. That is, a three-in-one kinda thing! For now, the Back button is still intact, showing up only when you need it, but the way things are going, it won’t be long before one is able to swipe left to go back to the previous screen.

Also read:

It’s worth noting that the new key still keeps its role as the home button. When you tap on it, it will take you to the home screen. Like on Oreo, long-pressing it will launch the Google Assistant, but that’s where the similarities end.

Everything else about the Android P gesture button is different. From now on, it’s about swiping up, back and forth on the key when executing various tasks. For instance, when you swipe up, you will either open the overview screen (recent apps) or the app drawer, but the latter requires the swipe to be slightly longer than the former. In the overview screen, you can swipe up to dismiss the open app or swipe down to make it full screen.

On Android Oreo and before, double tapping on the Recents button switches between the two most recent apps, but now that this button is gone on Android P, it doesn’t mean you can’t achieve this. In fact, it’s now much easier as all you need is to swipe right and release the key and the previously opened app will show up on your screen. Note that swiping right without releasing the key will take you through all your recent apps in what looks like a scroll wheel, but upon releasing it, the app on top will go full-screen.

As pointed out earlier, we dream of a case where the Back button will also be replaced with a swipe left gesture, but for now, you’ll have to deal with it in its old format.

How To Setup Dual Monitors With Xrandr

Dual monitor setup in Linux has never been easier. While methods such as the xinerama extension sometimes drive people insane, using RandR (Resize and Rotate) is quick and painless. This will allow you to use both monitors as one big screen instead of two identical ones (cloning). Follow these simple steps to get started.

Note: This HOWTO assumes that you are using the opensource drivers for your video card (ATI or Intel). Nvidia and AMD proprietary drivers come with their dual screen components.

1. Setup your chúng tôi configuration file:

Edit it as root:

gksudo gedit







(in GNOME) or

kdesudo kate







(in KDE)

2. Create a subsection under the “Screen” section with the following.








#the resolutions of your monitors





Xrandr will function without these chúng tôi lines, but it will limit the size of your desktop.

For my computer, I am using two monitors with 1440×900 resolution. If you have a different resolution, put those resolutions under “modes” and then combine the width of both for “virtual”. In other words, if you have a 1280×800 monitor, it would be “Virtual 2560 800”.

3. Save your changes, exit and restart X.

4. Now, you can setup your dual screens however you like. First find out some information about the screens. Open a terminal emulator and type:



It should tell you the name of each screen and its current resolution. On my computer, my screens are “DVI-0” and “DVI-1”.

5. To make one large desktop including both screens, run this command:











DVI-0 is on the right, and DVI-1 is on the left.

6. Create a script called “startxrandr” to run this command whenever you want.












7. Make sure to make the script executable


a+x startxrandr

That is all it takes. You can play around with it and see all of xrandr’s commands by running “xrandr -help”.


There are also a few GUI applications that allow you to control xrandr. Check with your Linux distribution.

You can set xrandr to run when your display manager or desktop environment starts. See the its documentation for startup applications.

KDE and GNOME will automatically configure two screens correctly so that maximizing a window will only fill one of the screens. Some desktop environments do not yet have support for this. You will have to test the one you use. You should have no problems with Compiz.

You can have two monitors with different resolutions, which is useful if you are using a laptop connected to a larger monitor.

In KDE, each screen will automatically be a different activity, and you can apply different widgets on each.

Some applications, especially those that rely on SDL (like many Linux games), may not honor your xrandr settings. If you are lucky, it will just clone the game on both screens. For applications like Boxee, you will need to set the environment variable before starting it:





Tavis J. Hampton

Tavis J. Hampton is a freelance writer from Indianapolis. He is an avid user of free and open source software and strongly believes that software and knowledge should be free and accessible to all people. He enjoys reading, writing, teaching, spending time with his family, and playing with gadgets.

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