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CUSTOM MADE SILENT PC

For programming, design, and music compositions, I use an exclusive "silent" PC built for me by Besser-Leise Computertechnik Ltd. in Germany. Advantages: No noise, very fast, lots of RAM, 12 USB plugs, drives 2 monitors, WLAN, professional soundcard.

—Processor:2 x 3 GHz, Intel
—Graphics cards:2 x NVIDIA Quadro FX380 (for 4 Monitors)
—Soundcard:X-Fi Elite Pro (professional soundcard)
—Case:LianLiPC A16 (brushed aluminium case)
—Monitors:2 x EIZO FlexScan (High-End test winner)

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—Keyboard:Logitech Y-UY95 (illuminated) (for speed)
—Mouse:Logitech silent mouse, M330 Silent Plus
—Audio Interface:Tascam US-144 (for music instruments)
—Loudspeakers:Alesis studio/nearfield speakers (⇒ why?)
—Operating System:Windows 10 English
—Internet Connection:250 Mbit/s, Fiber Power Internet (⇒ Test)
—Lighting:Two full-spectrum daylight lamps

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SOFTWARE

Years of experience have taught me that the less software I have, the more efficiently I work. So I made it a habit to test and compare everything, but only use software that is neither over-featured nor unflexible. Here's what I kept.


BROWSERS

"Google CHROME" which is the most widely used browser worldwide with 75% browser usage share. As a web developer, I must observe the current browser statistics — and Chrome is winning the race. It has the best extensions and is the fastest browser in some tests. I added a few useful Chrome extensions, for example:
AdRemover, Web Developer, Firebug Lite, Responsive Web Design Tester, LiveReload (!), CSS Auto Reload, JavaScript Errors Notifier, Page Notes, Font Changer with Google Web Fonts, SEO Site Tools, Similar Web, ColorZilla, Network Sniffer, Viewport Dimensions, Radio-player (Lounge stations: Jazzloft, Senza Chill, Lounge FM) etc.

...plus Firefox (very good, great extensions), Safari (good), IE (bad), Edge (crap).


EMAIL

"Thunderbird"
Some Thunderbird extensions e.g. "Auto Zip Attachments", "Enigmail" for secure email encryption


PROGRAMMING

"Eclipse" (this has become my favorite code editor, with many extensions)
"XAMPP for Windows" (the basis for all my PHP programming work)
"TSW Web Coder" (this is by far the best of all PHP IDE's - I tested all)
"PHP Expert Editor" (compact and fast, with programming font Inconsolata)
"Code Visual to Flowchart" (quite useful to visualize PHP programs)
"Tortoise CVS" (concurrent versioning system, for program versions)
"HDD Software Hex Editor" (good to have but not regularly necessary)
"CamStudio" (to record program demo videos directly from the screen)


DATABASE WORK

"HeidiSQL" (database admin tool, I prefer this over Navicat)
"phpFlashMyAdmin" (Online MySQL admin in Flash - forget phpMyAdmin!)
"MySQL Workbench" (sometimes quite useful for structuring a database)
"Access2MySQL" (must have to convert those client Access databases)


NETWORKING

"FlashFXP" (the only FTP software that is perfect)
"WinSCP" (for secure FTP and managing VPS servers)
"Pidgin IM" (compact and good for instant messaging)
"TeamViewer" (client support, remote desktop viewing)
"Visual TraceRoute" (can sometimes be very useful)


DESIGN

"Adobe Creative Suite" (a suite of design programs)
"Inkscape" (the best for vector designs such as logos)
"PhotoImpact" (the fastest software for photo editing)
"Flash MX 2004" (better for me than the newest)
"Swift3D" (for designing 3D objects inside Flash)
"Cinema4D XL" (to model and render 3D objects)
"Google SketchUp" (gotta love Google for that)
"Ulead GIF Animator" (GIF animation made easy)
"VideoPad" (to edit videos in an efficient way)


MUSIC COMPOSITION

"Presonus Studio One 2.6 Producer" (— works and sounds better than Cubase, Tracktion etc.)
part of the ⇒ Homerecording Setup: US-122, Alesis Studio Monitors, AKG 240, Unisphere 1, Variax JTV-69 ("25 guitars in one" / "Guitar of the Year"), Tune "Bass Maniac", M-Audio Keyboard, MT Power Drumkit 2 (the best), TruePianos Atlantis (the best), "Slayer 2" (best for bass), niceNwide (the best mastering tool), VST's etc.


OTHER DESKTOP SOFTWARE

"PeerBlock" (!), "OpenOffice", "Foxit PDF Editor", "Some PDF to Txt Converter", "CCleaner", "nexusfont", "StreamWriter" etc.


SPECIAL ONLINE SOFTWARE

"ClickTale" (mouse move heatmaps, to see what site visitors do)
"Montastic" (get informed when a website goes down)
"Online-Convert" (convert all kinds of files)
"Font Squirrel" (download designer fonts)


NOTEBOOK

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•   HP Pavilion Dv7

17 inch display, Quad-Core, 6GB RAM, full-size Keyboard, BlueRay, exceptionally good sounding speakers, Windows 10 / 64bit, XAMPP (Apache/MySQL/PHP) running as a service. Quotes from the review: "With a no-nonsense list of specs, power and high quality features including a *stellar* sound system and Intel's latest processors, the Dv7-4090ca defines the high-end Windows 7 portable market and does a fine job of replacing desktops, serving as a workhorse and entertaining its users."


TABLET

• Apple iPad Air 32GB Wi-Fi (Adblocker 1Blocker)


PHABLET (Smartphone/Tablet)

•  Samsung Galaxy Note with self-designed homescreen
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Mobile Music: Jabra Halo 2 + PowerAMP. For music downloads (Internet to Galaxy) @ 192 Kbps: Spotify + Replay Music.

Plus apps from "Google Play":

'Tasker', 'LauncherPro' (must have for customization), 'K-9 Mail', 'Google Keep' (Notes), 'Touch Calendar', 'File Manager' (the only good one on Android – must have), 'Andromedia Video Editor', 'Poweramp Music Player' (best player with directory playing), 'QuickPic' (must have), 'Asti Media Player' (best video player with A/B loop function for presentations), 'Touchqode', 'WhatsApp Messenger', 'Large Text' (useful in meetings when explaining terms), 'Zoner AntiVirus Free' (the best), 'Zattoo Live TV', 'Currency Converter', 'BaconReader' (must have as a Redditor), 'Visual Metronome', 'MIDI Drum Score Player', 'Tuner gStrings', 'Guitar Tabs', 'Smart Voice Recorder', 'My Piano', 'Songify', 'QR Code Reader', 'Finger Band', 'Color Grab', 'echo112' and 'My Tracks' + 'Google Earth' (useful when walking dogs), 'Call Recorder' etc.



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