Archives For Deals

Newsflash: Mom Orders TiVo!

Dave Zatz —  September 22, 2006
tivo-deal.jpg

OK, so the headline isn’t entirely accurate… More like: “Mom tires of resisting, Dave orders TiVo for her.” When visiting last month, I failed to convince her she needed a DVR. Well being somewhat manipulative, I might have accidentally changed her homepage to ZNF. Between the numerous questions I answered and the new fall season, she’s decided she might need a DVR. We could have gone the cable company DVR route, though when I mentioned that possibility she said, “Comcast, they suck.” Like mother, like son? TiVo.com/baseball is still active — get an 80 hour unit for $12.95/mo or a DT for $30 upfront plus $12.95/mo. I figured the single tuner unit (it’s a “digital VCR”) would be easier for her to wrap her mind around, so that’s where we’re starting. Mom is higher tech than she realizes and runs WPA… so initially, I’ll have her on dialup instead of messing with a wireless bridge or reconfiguring her network security.

lifetimetransfer.jpg
Picture courtesy of Shawn.

Stop it! Seriously. It sickens me when friends and family tell me how much they’re paying for cables at retail. Best Buy, Circuit City, and even Radio Shack are sticking it to consumers with profit margins that must exceed 80%.

Obviously we can’t stop buying cables, but we can be more choosy in who we patronize. If you have the patience to wait a few days for delivery, the best deals are (not-surprisingly) online. The other benefit of buying online is there are far more options in terms of connections and cable length. For example, I couldn’t just drive down to my local Tweeter for the 35′ HD15 -> Component cable I needed to feed my recently retired (sniff sniff) projector. Retailers like Amazon and Buy.com are much cheaper than the brick & mortars, but for the best deals look to specialized businesses.

In my experience, MonoPrice is currently the best of the bunch among lesser known vendors. Their prices are awesome and delivery is efficient. I recently purchased BOTH a 3′ HDMI cable and a 3′ DVI -> HDMI cable for UNDER $10. How can you beat that?

Everybody’s favorite universal remote is on sale for $150 off! Dell is offering the Harmony 880 for a low $100… until midnight. The retail price is $250 but this deal includes an instant $120 off, a $30 mail in rebate, and free delivery.

UPDATE: If you have a smaller budget or don’t need a color screen and rechargeable battery, TigerDirect has the Harmony 628 for $40 plus shipping.

UPDATE 2: Marte noticed the $30 mail-in rebate requires an additional $100 home electronics purchase from Dell within 6 weeks to be valid. $130 for the 880 is still a great deal, but not quite as amazing.

TiVo S2 80HR Fire Sale

Dave Zatz —  June 30, 2006

Get a new 80 hour Series 2 for free after rebates! If you already have service, a second unit runs only $6.95/mo. I think it’s safe to say this model is heading out… not surprising given digital tuner regulation going into effect next year.

tivo-ball.jpg

In honor of Father’s Day (and publicity), TiVo has partnered with Minor League Baseball and will be giving away up to 1,000 S2 units (via voucher) per market. Agree to a year of service, get a single tuner TiVo free. Add 30 bucks and upgrade to a dual-tuning model. Additional promotions (TiVo raffles) seem to vary by team website — so you may want to contact your stadium before making the trek. I’m not much of a baseball fan, but I could be rooting for the Potomac Nationals this afternoon. ;)

UPDATE: It may be possible to get in on this without attending a game. See www.tivo.com/baseball for details.

Nashville Sounds
Nashville, TN
Game Date: June 18th
Columbus Clippers
Columbus, OH
Game Date: June 18th
Colorado Springs Sky Sox
Colorado Springs, CO
Game Date: June 18th
Richmond Braves
Richmond, VA
Game Date: June 18th
Springfield Cardinals
Springfield, MO
Game Date: June 18th
New Hampshire Fisher Cats
Manchester, NH
Game Date: June 18th
Fort Wayne Wizards
Fort Wayne, IN
Game Date: June 18th
Hagerstown Suns
Hagerstown, MD
Game Date: June 18th
Everett Aqua Sox
Everett, WA
Game Date: June 18th
South Bend Silver Hawks
South Bend, IN
Game Date: June 18th
Charlotte Knights
Charlotte, NC
Game Date: June 18th
Tennessee Smokies
Kodak, TN (Knoxville-area)
Game Date: June 18th
Stockton Ports
Stockton, CA
Game Date: June 18th
West Virginia Power
Charleston, WV
Game Date: June 18th
Rochester Red Wings
Rochester, NY
Game Date: June 18th
Mississippi Braves
Pearl, MS
Game Date: June 16th
Durham Bulls
Durham, NC
Game Date: June 16th
Altoona Curve
Altoona, PA
Game Date: June 18th
New Britain Rock Cats
New Britain, CT
Game Date: June 18th
Salem Avalanche
Salem, VA Game
Date: June 18th
Potomac Nationals
Woodbridge, VA
Game Date: June 18th
Birmingham Barons
Birmingham, AL
Game Date: June 17th
Brooklyn Cyclones
Brooklyn, NY
Game Date: June 22nd
Akron Aeros
Akron, OH
Game Date: June 24th
Buffalo Bisons
Buffalo, NY
Game Date: June 17th
Tucson Sidewinders
Tucson, AZ
Game Date: June 24th
gyration.jpg


Kevin spotted
a nice deal over on Woot for a $30 refurb Gyration keyboard and mouse. Back in my HTPC days I used this (or a similar model) to control a projector-attached computer. The remote and keyboard use RF, so you have increased range without line-of-sight issues. And being so compact, these are pretty unobtrusive on the couch or coffee table. Additionally, the gyroscopic features of the mouse (moving it in the air) were nice to use while reclining without worrying about a hard surface (though the couch cushions were often sufficient). The mouse charger/dock acts as your USB receiver — mine happily sat on top of the subwoofer. I don’t know what these run for today, but I recall paying over $100.