Profile 1.1 players for dirt cheap If you're only looking to spend less than $200 on a Blu-ray player, you'll probably have to settle for an Profile 1.1 unit. You'll be giving up the ability to watch Internet-enabled BD-Live content available on some Blu-ray movies, but that'… Read more
Owning a portable powerhouse of a lap-dwelling machine may be a bit economically out-of-reach for some, but there's never been a better time to get a decently-performing laptop for a great value. Just follow these tips:
Try a Netbook. If your computing needs are low, or even basic (web browsing, office doc work, and not too much need for heavy-duty graphics or HD video), Netbooks offer a great package for very little money. Mainly equipped with Intel Atom processors and running Windows XP, they're not so great a multitasking, but they'll do the work that most computers handled five years ago with ease. Low-end Netbooks are where the best value's at, with some coming in at under $300, like Dell's Mini 10v. Some are on sale online for even less, or are subsidized by cell carriers (the HP Mini 1151nr costs $199). You will, however, need to sign up for a wireless 3G data plan for a subsidized Netbook, which will cost more in the long run than simply looking for free Wi-Fi hotspots.
Thin-and-light laptops are getting cheaper. It was just a year and a half ago when the MacBook Air cost an arm and a leg for super-light computing power. While the Air is more affordable now, there are a variety of similarly-powered machines running lower-cost CULV processors just hitting the market that cost even less. MSI's X340 is practically a Windows version of the MacBook Air, with an equally good form factor (but made of plastic instead of aluminum), but costs $800.
Leave off the extras. Go for the bare-bones configuration unless you really need more RAM or a larger hard drive -- those can sometimes be added later, usually for less money.… Read more
People sometimes criticize Apple's iTunes software for looking too much like a spreadsheet--but for some people, it's not spreadsheet enough. If you're the kind of data-devouring music nerd who dreams of spinning your iTunes library database into a killer Microsoft Excel pie chart, then you have come to the right place.
Almost everyone needs a cell phone these days, but owning one can be expensive. Here are a few tips to make the most of your dollar when it comes to cell phones and carrier plans.
Get only what you need Sure that Apple iPhone 3G is sexy, and sure that Palm Pre is all the rage. But will you actually use all the features on those phones? If the answer is no, then resist the urge to jump on the hype bandwagon. If all you want a cell phone for is making calls, a basic cell phone will do just … Read more
Looking to save a few bucks on that portable navigation device or epic stereo system for your car? Well, we have a few tips to help you keep more money in your wallet.
Don't be afraid to look at the outgoing models. In most cases, the newest of the new GPS devices only offer incremental advantages over the models they replace. Meanwhile, the cost of the outgoing models often drops drastically as retailers attempt to clear out their stock to make room for the new. If the difference in feature set is worth the difference in price, you could … Read more
Like other posts you'll be seeing here over the next week or so, we could offer you lots of tips for buying an affordable desktop. Refurbished PCs from reputable dealers can offer a bargain. Wait until Best Buy's free Windows 7 upgrades kicks in on June 26. You can find a reasonably fast gaming PC for less than $1,000.
All of that is true, but there's a larger issue going on in budget PCs right now: Nettops. This new category has received lots of attention the last few months. We've also reviewed our share of … Read more
Flat-panel TVs are no longer playthings of the rich. In fact, dirt-cheap models can be had in every screen size and from numerous diverse makers. Here's a guide to finding your way through the budget HDTV morass.
Bargain brands vs. name brands Value brands like Vizio and Westinghouse, along with even lesser-known names like Dynex and Haier, compete head-to-head against the Sonys and Panasonics of the world. You can get a great deal with an off-brand, although you should still do your research. When considering a bargain brand it's always worthwhile to see how much you're actually … Read more
There are so many snapshot cameras available that it can actually be a fairly miserable experience shopping for one. Add in concerns about pricing and you're likely going to continue using your camera phone as your primary point-and-shoot for digital photos.
Finding the right camera at the right price is easier if you start by asking yourself two questions: how will I use the camera and how will I use the photos? These are important for determining what type of user you are and how little you can expect to spend without being disappointed with your choice.Check out our full digital camera buying guide to help determine what specs will meet your needs. Then, use the tips below for finding the best deal on your new camera. Happy hunting.
Eliminate features There are three key components most people look for when picking a camera: megapixels, LCD size, and zoom range. Current entry-level models start at 10 megapixels for the most part, which is plenty of resolution for snapshot prints of 8x10 or smaller. The common LCD size on these models is 2.5 inches, and they typically have a 3x or 4x zoom. Features on these cameras usually include basic face detection, a dozen scene modes, a low-resolution movie mode, a full automatic mode, and a program auto mode giving you controls for ISO, white balance, light metering, and focus. (Here are some good examples.)
Any additional features start to drive the price up--in other words, they are things used to upsell you to another model. So if you don't think you'll ever want to control shutter speed or aperture settings, don't need a 3.5-inch touch-screen display, you won't be using the movie mode for anything except YouTube clips, or a 10x zoom will get you way closer to your subject than you want to get, feel free to skip them.… Read more
If you're on a budget and shopping for a new MP3 player, here are a few general tips for locking down a good deal.
First and foremost, do some math so you can get a realistic idea of how much storage you'll need for all the music, photos, and video you want to take on the go. The less storage you need, the cheaper the price. If an MP3 player includes a slot for memory expansion, you can always increase the capacity down the road.
Also, be realistic about the features you need. MP3 players that support video … Read more