For taking pictures, it's all in the settings

Q: I just purchased a new Nikon professional-quality digital camera that allows interchangeable lenses. My old camera produced great pictures right off the storage card. But now I usually need to adjust my pictures using PhotoShop Elements before they look right to me. Do I have a defective camera?

– Debra McCarthy

I can't know, but I can offer some possibilities. First, there are more settings with a DSLR (digital single lens reflex), so it could be that you need to spend more time with the manual and experimenting – always a good idea before shooting big moments. Second, I do more “digital darkroom” adjusting with my professional digital camera. So it all depends on what you mean by adjusting and just how far out of whack things are. If you know a savvy amateur or professional photographer, maybe you could show them your raw images and get another opinion.

Q: Last night my husband tripped over the ethernet cable that our home network uses to connect to a second computer. The router crashed to the floor and the plastic connector for the cable broke. How hard is it to replace a connector?

– Elizabeth Warden

I would just buy some ethernet that already has the connectors attached. For one thing, you'd need a crimping tool to firmly attach the cables (and that process also makes the electrical connection) to the connector. Second, you need a good eye to make sure that the various colored wires are in the right order.

After you buy the new cable, take time to carefully route that cable along the wall. You can even get special plastic molding that covers it completely. Not only will it look better, it'll prevent future accidents.

Q: My old computer monitor works fine, but it's making a whining noise lately. I worry that it may be getting ready to go out.

– Tom Reinfeld

You are right to worry. That whining can be a sign the power supply inside the monitor is going. Out-of-whack monitors worry me, especially the old-fashioned type that use a picture tube. There's always a chance of fire. Replace the old monitor with an LCD monitor now. Besides eliminating a possible hazard, you'll save on desk space.

Bill Husted writes for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. E-mail: bhusted@