January 8th, 2006


Hanging out and buying expensive stuff

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I got home about 3 and decided it would be a _bad_ idea to start playing Civ4 at that point :) So i actually got to bed around 4. So now i need to decide if i'm going to spend all day playing Civ4 or if i'm going to go out and do some shopping. There are three fairly big ticket (or at least theoretically big ticket) items i'm thinking of getting. A flatscreen monitor, a new cellphone and a PDA.

After doing some online shopping i'm begining to think i should have just gotten a LCD screen from Dell so i could have gotten the 30% off on it from the coupon =P I'd originally been thinking that i'd save a fair bit of money on shipping by not getting one, but when i found out that one of the current deals was "free" shipping i forgot to rethink the pros and cons of that.

It looks like the cheapest monitors i can find online would be a $200 (after rebate) 17" Sceptre or a $240 (after rebate) 19" Sceptre, botch from Costco. Anyone know of any other good places to shop for cheap LCD monitors?

I wonder if it's possible to get extension cords for monitor cables. If i can get the cable up to 10 or 15' it should be possible to arrange things so i can use the computer from either living room or bedroom fairly easily.

Edit: I've been told that Walmart has small fairly cheap LCD monitors, fairly cheap as in around $100. But it's walmart... but it's a $100 LCD... but it's walmart... =/

Comparison shopping

I went by Target and it turns out they only have monitors online, not in the store. Went to Best Buy and they had a pretty crappy selection of cheap monitors. The best they had was a 15" Westing House for $200. Costco had a 15" Envision for $180 and a 17" Envision for $240. I debated what to do for awhile because the 15" one only had 1024x768 resolution, but i finally decided to get the 17" one but go see what Fry's had before going home, since i can always do a return at Costco.

Fry's had a pretty wide selection of monitors but the only one they had that was the same size and significantly cheaper was a 17" Emprex for $190.

I didn't actually buy it cause i'm still trying to decide which i prefer. The Envision is amazingly thing and is made out of metal or metalic plastic, which looks pretty cool. It also has an 8 ms refresh time. The Emprex is made out of black plastic and doesn't look nearly as cool. It's also slightly heaver, slightly thicker, and has a 12 ms refresh time. Of course given that i'm already home i'll probably decide that saving $50 isn't worth going back to Fry's and buying the one then going back to Costco and waiting in line to return the other :)

Once i decide for sure which monitor i'm getting i need to work on getting an extension cable. Both Fry's and Best Buy have cables. Best Buy just has one type of cable in two different sizes i think, 10" and 6". Fry's has a much wider selection but their two kinds of 10" ones (one double shielded, the other gold plated) were about $5 more. (I wouldn't mind the double shielded, although that makes the cord more akward to deal with, the gold plating is just dumb.) I'd really like a slightly longer cable too. Fry's had a spot for a 15" cable but there were none there and it was a male to male and i _think_ i need a male to female. I'll have to double check that when i unpack my monitor.

Edit: According to the "Fry's" online store (it's unclear exactly how related the online store is to the real stores) they carry the same 17" Envision as Costco= for $280, $230 after $50 mail in rebate, so it seems like the Costco and Fry's prices are pretty much in line at least.