Men can have tons of fun with all types of toys, and electronics can be on that toy list, right behind fast cars and boats. While you may need to pay thousands of bucks for a sweet ride or a sweeter sail, there’s no reason you have to follow suit when you can instead score some killer deals on your electronics. Several tips can help you save on any type of doodad you may be buying, even if you go for the big-name brands. More money saved means more toys you can buy, and, as the saying goes, a guy can never have too many video game systems, stereos or big-screen TVs.
Shop online. Shopping online puts gazillions of electronics at your fingertips with prices that can vary among retailers by hundreds of dollars for the exact same digital camera or TV. Such a vast selection can be much more likely to nab you a better price than the mere three stores around town. Besides, you also save on gas money. Just don’t get slammed by shipping costs. Plenty of sites ship for free, a must for big, bulky stereos and TVs.
Say to heck with extended warranties. Murphy’s Law says if the thing is going to break, it’s going to do it after any warranties expire, so don’t waste your money. Consumer Reports also says not to waste your cash on extended warranties since, if the dang thing does break after the manufacturer’s warranty expires, the cost of repairs usually matches the cost of an extended warranty. That means you’d be out the same amount of money, but at least you’re getting something in return.
Go generic with the extras. Your TV needs cables, and your camera needs a memory stick, but you don’t need utra-high-tech cables or ultra-high-whatever memory sticks. The generic usually does just fine, just like you can buy generic vitamins at the supermarket and get the same nutrients. Any difference in quality is typically so subtle that it’s not worth the ultra-high-elevated price.
Don’t fear refurbished. A quick glance at refurbished items may be enough to compel you to give one a chance, since Consumer Reports notes they are often up to 30 percent less than brand new items. Note two caveats, however. Make sure you buy from a trusted store or website, not from Joe Blow’s Broken TV Shop. And make sure you’re allowed to return the thing if it doesn’t work up to snuff.