Negritude's Shopping Notes

  1. I got lucky and found an external I/O Magic USB2 16x DVD burner at Staples for only $22.50. It was just sitting on the shelf with no tag and I had them scan it. This is the one without lightscribe. There was also a tag on the shelf for the internal version (but no drive), that said $29.50.

  2. Microcenter sucks. I hadn’t visited one in years, but when I decided to check it out again after a long absence, I was severely disappointed. Not even remotely close to the awesomeness that is Fry’s Electronics. Most of the media on the shelves is nothing but Hong Kong crap, and what they do have is mostly out of stock. Truly pathetic. It’s a cramped little place with hardly anyone on the registers. And to top it off, they’re overpriced. A lot of common everyday items are more expensive there than Fry’s. Reminds me a lot of the lesser CompUSA stores. The fanboys had me fooled.

  3. One thing I did note at Microcenter is that all the Samsung Pleomax media they carry is only DVD-R. Where is the DVD+R? People reported that they couldn’t find any Optodisc, but they forgot to mention that Microcenter doesn’t even carry the +Rs, so therefore their conclusion was faulty. It could very well be that the Pleomax +Rs are still MIT, and might even be Optodisc, but you’ll never know that from looking at the in-store inventory. Sheesh. I hate when I have to find out these things for myself. Please people, let’s give more accurate and precise reports in the future.

  4. All of the Kodak 100-packs at Fry’s Electronics are OPTODISCR016. Unfortunately, that means they’re all DVD-R, and it doesn’t burn nearly as good as the +R OPTODISCR16. However, just the fact that Optodisc still exists under the Kodak brand is a good sign. I actually didn’t notice whether the Kodak media that is carried at Staples is available in +R as well. Can anyone comment? Is all the HK made Kodak media at Staples -R only, or did you see any +R disks on the shelves? I’m trying to figure out if there’s some kind of pattern, where the media under various brands is mostly HK, but that what we need to find is the +R if we want the good Optodisc.

  5. If you can find any left, the 8x +R 25-pack of TDK media at Circuit City is still on sale for $4.99. This is final clearance. One store has removed the media from their system already, and when I went to buy the last two, they had to do a special ring up.

  6. Target has the 15-pack of 16x +R TDK DVD media on clearance for $3.24. These are CMC MAG M01s, but if you just want to try a few, as I did, this is a cheap way to do that and you don’t have to buy so many. The -R were $4.50 I think, so there’s no deal there.

  7. I found an old, and somewhat beatup 50-pack of OfficeMax 8x +R DVD media at OfficeMax. It rang up for $4.00, but I got them to knock off another dollar for the poor package condition, so it was only $3.00. Media is OPTODISC OR8, and it burns OK, better than a previous pack I tried, but there is a major PIE mountain that pops up as you get closer to the end of the disk. Strangely, there is no similar rise in PIFs.

For #4

All the Staples Kodak I have seen and I looked at every spindle various times since that offered them have been HK made, yes +R and -R :frowning:

Also note that Kodak -R (I know you wouldn’t buy them but) MIT can be ProdiscF02, though they are the best ProdiscF02 I have ever used.

#2

You’re not the only one there. I HATE microcenter most of the time. In the years that i have walked in there, i have purchased 2 things from them. (occasionally they have really good deals)

  1. Acer 22" AL2216W monitor for 279. They have the 24" one for 300 right now after rebate.

  2. BenQ 1640 retail for $36. I rue the day that i only bought one.

As for media, they carry CRAP. The shelves are littered with Windata discs. :Z
As for the Verbs, when they go on sale, they are always more expensive than BB, OM, OD, Staples sales on Verbs.

What Micro Center did you go to? There is plenty of Verbatim media at the one I frequent it Duluth GA, including the newly released 25-packs of hub printable DVD±Rs. Heck, that’s the only place that still has any DataLifePlus Super Azo CD-Rs. They even still have a couple of PX-716ALs.

#2 MicroCenter sucks. I agree except for a few exceptions: Their everyday price of $50 on their private label mid-tower ATX PowerSpec case (a rebadged Coolermaster Centurian) Is a good deal in between sales/free shipping events at Newegg, etc. Most discount E-merchants charge the same $50 for a Centurian PLUS $15-$25 for shipping. They also sell a decent looking PowerSpec micro ATX case for around $25 that is much more solid than your typical cheap Raidmax/Apex mid-tower cases.

Several years ago Micro Center had decent prices on some items like USB/1394 cables and CPU coolers ( I remember buying a 10’ USB cable for about $3 and a copper ThermalTake CPU HSF for $10) , but since then charge nearly as much as the full retail places. (Thank goodness for monoprice.com for good quality cables at wholesale prices.)

I can only hope the other CD Freaks in the Atlanta are agree with the sentiments expessed here as it means I can get all the hub printable Verb DVDs and DLP CD-Rs I want :bigsmile: :stuck_out_tongue:

Just like I can get ALL the Samsung Pleomax 16X DVD+R OPTODISCR16 media I want :stuck_out_tongue:

so what is the bottom line? :confused:
Does MC suck or not? :wink:

I thought they were good for their sales on DL Verbatim.

I can get all the Verbies I want at OfficeMax and Best Buy, and with the coupons I and others use, at much, much better prices. The problem with MC is that they have poor media diversity (I would make an inside joke about the FCC right now, but most of you wouldn’t get it). They’ve got some Verbs, and that’s about it.

As for CDs, I’m sure we can survive with all the Maxell CD-R Pro and Fuji MIJ out there, which can be had for much better prices than the Super AZOs.

Basically, except for a few niche products, Microcenter is useless. I remember on another forum all the fanboys who were hoping that Microcenter would move into the space left by the closed CompUSA stores. Geek please! Microcenter wouldn’t be any sort of improvement at all.

I just plugged it in and fired it up. The drive inside is a Samsung SH-S182D with firmware SB02. Which firmware is best for that, considering the whole lead-in problem with -R media? Can or should I downgrade to SB01, or use the modified CDFreaks SB03 version, or just go to SB04 and stay away from -R media?

[QUOTE=negritude;1915133]I just plugged it in and fired it up. The drive inside is a Samsung SH-S182D with firmware SB02. Which firmware is best for that, considering the whole lead-in problem with -R media? Can or should I downgrade to SB01, or use the modified CDFreaks SB03 version, or just go to SB04 and stay away from -R media?[/QUOTE]

Isn’t that drive suppoesed to be 18X ?:confused:

SB04 CDF Edition is very good for it

[QUOTE=negritude;1915133]I just plugged it in and fired it up. The drive inside is a Samsung SH-S182D with firmware SB02. Which firmware is best for that, considering the whole lead-in problem with -R media? Can or should I downgrade to SB01, or use the modified CDFreaks SB03 version, or just go to SB04 and stay away from -R media?[/QUOTE]

I have 2 SH-S182D drives - one of which had the lead-in problem and one that did not. I ran the special CDF firmware version for awhile but finally decided to just use current firmware (SB06) on both and just avoid -R on the one with the lead-in issues. Link to SB06 here:

SAMSUNG ODD SERVICE

:doh: Actually the one that exhibited the lead-in issue is sitting on the shelf currently anyway.

[QUOTE=Jesterrace;1915113]I thought they were good for their sales on DL Verbatim.[/QUOTE]At least for the Microcenters around me, 20 pack DL Verbs are often on sale for 27.99-29.99.

[QUOTE=minaelromany;1915195]Isn’t that drive suppoesed to be 18X ?:confused:[/QUOTE]

I/O Magic boxes often included upgraded substitutions. They’d give you whatever is the latest available OEM drive they have at the time, no matter what the box says. The specs on the box rarely matched what was inside. The box is just generic.

[QUOTE=negritude;1915394]I/O Magic boxes often included upgraded substitutions. They’d give you whatever is the latest available OEM drive they have at the time, no matter what the box says. The specs on the box rarely matched what was inside. The box is just generic.[/QUOTE]

Thanks for clarification although I still find it so weird