Gadget Guru: this fella's got more smarts than a bumper tube of smarties

And he uses those smarts to answer your questions, including: what am I supposed to do with my old phone and how can I improve my pool game?

What am I supposed to do with my old phone?

GaGu's mansion is littered with discarded handsets, and it really does seem terribly wasteful to cast aside something that's capable of so much, just because it's been superseded by a newer, prettier model.

For various environmental and moral reasons, you might want to consider the recycling option. Don't expect to pop your decrepit phone into an envelope and make a mint, but sending it to your network's recycling program, or an independent like Envirofone or Mazuma, means it might just end up in grateful hands. That is, however, the boring option.

Instead, use your old phone as a glorified remote control. With the help of something like Unified Remote (£Free, Android and iOS), you can turn any old touchscreen into a virtual trackpad and keyboard for a media PC. If you're lucky enough to have a redundant handset with a built-in IR blaster, Anymote (£Free, Android) will stand in when your proper remotes have disappeared beneath the sofa.

Alternatively, you could use a client app to control the likes of a Chromecast or Plex, or use the companion apps of various Wi-Fi-enabled devices.

But this stuff could easily be done on your current phone, so let's get more creative: install Perch (£Free, Android), nail your old phone to a wall and use its camera for all your spying needs. Install DoorSec Quick Door Security (89p, Android), and stick it to a door to alarm it (this might require a bit of creative wiring).

If your phone has made it through its life without the battery becoming hosed, and if it supports USB on the go, grab StarTech's microUSB-to-USB OTG adapter (£4.79) and use it as just about the most awkward way possible to charge your new handset.

Some might suggest putting games on your old phone and handing it to youngsters, but let's be real here: your kids will reject your rubbish old phone faster than a plate full of sprouts.

Is it worth investing in high-end headphones?

How good are your ears? This should be your first concern. Guru's ill-advised and deeply regrettable heavy-metal phase, for instance, didn't just leave behind tinnitus and a terrible tattoo – his aural-frequency range, smashed as it was by blast beats, mosh pits and massive speaker stacks, is now lacking just a little. Although there's no true way to determine exactly what you can and can't hear without the help of a qualified audiologist and some serious testing equipment, consider your personal impression of your capabilities into any value equation.

Next, think about what you'll be listening to and via what streaming service, because if the data isn't there, no manner of ear-speaker tech or format conversion is going to make it appear. So, if you're not equipped with a (pricey) Hi-Res Audio library (at least 320kbps, ideally 24-bit) or a box full of clean vinyl, and if you're not using a quality hi-fi with a top-line DAC, there's really no reason to go mad on the end-point. And unless you'll put yourself in a position where you can truly appreciate what you're hearing – that means reclining, eyes closed, kids packed off to military school – you won't get the full benefits.

Not that GaGu is actually trying to talk you out of the idea, mind. He's just trying to temper your expectations.

For everyday use, pick something more mid-range. Something you won't mind taking out of the house when commuting or hanging around in the park; something you can happily retire if the cable frays; and something you can use without worry or ceremony. Audio-Technica bring audiophile sound at a more mainstream price with the ATH-MSR7s (£169). Bose has a stunning set of wireless cans called the QuietComfort 35s (£289.95), while Sennheiser bridges the gap between mid-range and high-end with the Momentum Wireless (€449/£375).

Got cash to burn? Check out the T3 Ed's faves, AKG's N90Q Golds (£1,300), or choose the world-class Audeze LCD-3s (£1,475).

How can I improve my pool game quick-smart?

Balls, shafts, tips: readers, get your tittering done now because Guru won't be able to get through this without a hefty dose of double entendre. Ready?

Firstly, a smooth shaft is essential. Presuming you're using your own cue (if you're not, try Peradon's superior sticks), get rid of any oils and grime by rubbing it furiously with a cloth or dedicated cleaner, then massage in a fluid such as Sil Kleen Shaft & Ferrule Cleaner (£7.95). Don't use micro-grit sandpapers – Guru wouldn't put those anywhere near his wood, and neither should you.

Next, the tip: keep it in prime condition with a Cuetec Bowtie Tip Tool (£11.50), a satisfying pocket device if ever there was one.

The final step is to play. Get your chin on the shaft, eye up the balls, etc. If you can't be bothered with all that, Mike Shorer Fine Jewellery does a skull-and-snakes-themed chalk holder (£37.50) – that should intimidate your opponent enough for you to get the edge.

Oi! What cool kitchen gadget should I buy?

If you're so impulsive that you want a kitchen device simply for the sake of having one, don't buy one. Guru's shelves of kitchen purgatory are on the verge of collapse. Dusty breadmakers, greasy George Foreman Grills and dirty juicers endanger GaGu's family like loose rocks on a cliffside.

The only cool, worthy kitchen gadget is one you're actually going to use. The granite worktops of GaGu Towers make space for one particular all-in-one machine: a Kenwood KMC030 Titanium Chef (£499). It's exploited near-daily, mainly because it takes the elbow grease out of many regular tasks. You probably don't even need one, but at least it's compact.

GaGu, I think I'm allergic to my watch!

You probably aren't. While most modern stainless-steel watch components use at least some nickel as part of their metal alloys, it's present in a very small amount and is usually coated to prevent direct contact with the skin. If you do have a serious nickel allergy, go to town on the inside of the strap with a few coats of clear nail varnish.

The probable reason your watch is irritating your skin, Dr Guru is sorry to say, is because you're a sweaty old so-and-so. Salt deposits can rub and block pores, so take off your watch while taking a shower, give the inside of the strap a good old clean, and don't put the watch back on until the irritation has died down.

Are you a PC or Mac man?

Guru refuses to nail his computing colours to a particular mast. Each platform has its benefits; this very column is being wastefully written on a 5K iMac (£1,599) because, oh my, that screen is amazing! But GaGu's urge to tinker is most nurtured by his custom-built (and, naturally, frequently disabled) desktop PC.

There are plenty of criteria you could use to choose your own platform, but here's a general rule of thumb: if you're doing practical or creative work and want a reliable machine to cope with it, pick up a Mac. If you're playing games and don't mind getting your hands dirty, a PC is for you.