New Toys

I’m a techie tightwad. For as much as I’ve been involved in technology both from a professional and personal aspect, I really hate buying technology. The reason is because technology rarely lives up to the hype. Either that or the usefulness is so short-lived that it’s not worth the investment. I have BOXES of crap that I bought and no longer use, believe me.

This weekend however I decided that I needed to buy some technology to replace some stuff that was just getting old so I went shopping to replace my printer and my TV.

First, my printer. My old printer was an HP Deskjet 5850 and I gotta say I hated to see that sucker go. It was reliable, fast and printed beautifully. The downside was that it was only compatible with Wireless B and did not use WPA2 encryption. This meant I had to keep an old Apple Airport router around to make it work and it also means that I had to have a physical cable connecting my Cisco router to the Airport. So I decided to buy a new printer so I could get rid of the extra router and cabling. I ended up buying an HP 3050a. The 3050a is a low end combo printer/scanner. It’s 100% wifi, connects to my existing network just fine and has really good mac support. It cost me $70 which is crazy cheap. I can also print to it via the iPhone/iPad and even over the internet. I don’t know why I’d want to print over the internet, but printing from the iPad is really handy.

My second purchase was a new TV. We had an old tube Sony 36″ for the last 15 years and honestly I just grew to hate looking at it. Everything is in letterbox these days which means on my square TV I was looking at this tiny little picture. And when you have a Roku or computer hooked up to it, the graphics on the menus are horribly blurry. So I went to Costco and bought a new Vizio 47″ LCD. Now I know what some are saying…. you gotta have LED, you gotta have 120hz refresh, blah, blah, blah. No I don’t have to have any of that crap. The hottest price point right now in my opinion are 60hz LCD’s. To get a substantial increase in viewing quality you really have to just go up a few sizes and for that you’ll spend a grand easy. The increase in quality between LED and traditional LCD is not worth it when you consider it’s at least 30% more expensive, especially when moving up from a tube TV. We watched a few HD movies on it last night and it looks STUNNING. I’m really happy with it.

So those are my latest technology purchases. That will probably be the last things I buy for a while.