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Old 01-28-2010, 09:00 AM   #1
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Tech purchases you regret?

There are some tech purchases which, even if we later upgrade to something different, we enjoy the time we had with them and feel we got fair use of them. Then there are others which in hindsight we regret Where do your various tech gizmos of yore fall on the spectrum? For me...

1) Alphasmart. Don't regret it. I bought one, then won one in a contest and sold the one I had bought, so I basically got it for free. It was a great device for me and when the Neo came out, I lusted for years before finally scoring one on ebay for under $100 and selling the Alphasmart.

2) Alphasmart Dana. I do regret this one, even though it was pretty cheap. I regret it because I could have gotten by just fine with the Alphasmart I already had. I wanted the Dana because they were plugging it as a great ebook reader since it came with a widescreen-enabled version of eReader. It is the first device I bought for the specific intent of reading ebooks (I had previously used a Palm PDA for that purpose). And...the screen has such a massive glare that the widescreen abilities were a total waste. It was brutal to read on. I still use it from time to time as a writing machine and it's good for that, but I could have just kept the Alphasmart. What I would get for it used is so low that I just keep it and mostly use it at Nanowrimo time.

3) eBookwise. I do regret this one also. It was a very pokey device to get content onto and its bookstore is terrible and has one of the most restrictive DRM schemes I have ever seen. It was big and clunky. It had its day for me, and there was a time I did use it often. But when I finally did sell it, it was at a huge loss compared to what I paid for it and I should have just bought the Sony in the first place.

4) Netbooks. These I also regret. I bought an EEE pc when it first came out and it died a painful death within a year. First, the battery completely went. It could not hold a charge and literally would start complaining after 1 minute being unplugged. Then the power cord had such a poor design that the prongs stopped registering they were plugged in so that was that. I gave it away to a guy who already had one with a power cord he could use with this; I couldn't sell it since it was so defective. I replaced it with an Acer which has been fine, but I don't use it enough and it's basically been little more than a glorified jukebox when I do music with my students. The year after I got it, our school got laptops teachers can sign out, so I could have just put my MP3s on a memory stick and used those with a plug-in speaker. I don't think I could get much if I sold it, so this is just going to take up space for me.

5) Sony 505. I don't regret it per se as I got good use out of it and read many books with it. But especially in light of the new Apple product, I don't think I will get a very good price for selling this and I was hoping for that to subsidize the cost of my new Kindle. So in that respect I am disappointed and perhaps I should have soldiered on with the eBookwise until the Kindle went international.

How about you, what is your device history like and do you regret any of your purchases?

Last edited by ficbot; 01-30-2010 at 11:49 AM.
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Old 01-28-2010, 10:25 AM   #2
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I got an Archos 504 as a Christmas gift a few years back. It was a neat little device and I did use it for a while as an MP3 player, but since I already had an iPod, it was unfortunately more of a novelty than anything else (I didn't watch as much video on it as I assumed I would). It's been gathering dust in my room for a while now.
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Old 01-28-2010, 07:06 PM   #3
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Does xbox 360 count? I am on my 8th one...they keep breaking for no reason.
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Old 01-28-2010, 07:15 PM   #4
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Apple computers. I've had two iMac's (intel) and two mac minis (one PPC, one intel) and they're shoddy. Cheap, crappy internals. CD/DVD drives that break after a couple of uses. Fiddly to do anything with beyond what Apple want you to do. The only thing saving this iMac I'm on now is that I can install Ubuntu and Windows 7 on it, other than that it would be a £1,000 paperweight.

Two years ago I bought a bare bones PC system for £150 with a cheapo AMD X2 chip and it still beats every Apple computer I've ever owned
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Old 01-28-2010, 07:40 PM   #5
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A Slingbox. I don't know why I decided I needed to watch my home television on my laptop while away from home. I'm not into sports, so I didn't need to be able to watch the superbowl and the like while out and about.

I sold it on eBay to a U.S. soldier in Germany, so *he* could watch NFL games from his brother's TV in the states (I was happy about that).
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Old 01-28-2010, 07:51 PM   #6
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A Mac Book. I bought it for my wife, who is a photographer because it was supposed to be the photographer's computer. I now scream, "Intuitive, my ass!" at the television every time one of those, "I'm a Mac" commercials come on.
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Old 01-28-2010, 07:58 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pshrynk View Post
A Mac Book. I bought it for my wife, who is a photographer because it was supposed to be the photographer's computer. I now scream, "Intuitive, my ass!" at the television every time one of those, "I'm a Mac" commercials come on.
They're nowhere near intuitive. Took me days and days to figure out how to get a CD out of the tray that was stopping my first iMac from booting. Apple couldn't put a little button on the side to press, like every PC in existence, their solution? Left click on the mouse as the iMac boots. Ridiculous computers that are all style and very little substance.
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Old 01-28-2010, 09:56 PM   #8
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The iMac...I don't regret for a second. It was so intuitive, and such a pleasurable change from so many career years in front of a Windows PC. It always feels welcoming to my photo organising and post-processing.

The Iliad...I kind of regret that. The eInk is good, and I empathise with its popularity, but its emotional response from me is simply...grey. Its (relative) slowness, its screen-refreshing, its screen "colour", its occasional bugbears with dictionaries, its drab unattractiveness (oddly, its relatively limited battery time doesn't bother me in the slightest) just feels like it sucks some of the pleasure - the pleasure I've got with the obsessive books-consumption that started in childhood - I get out of books and reading. It's probably partly why I still buy pbooks.

Olympus 770SW...I regret. Certainly a good camera I'd recommend if appropriate, but a "ruggedised" P&S that I didn't need and didn't like the resultant photo quality of (and should have known that before I bought it).
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Old 01-29-2010, 02:01 AM   #9
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iPhone. I bought it because it was the only way to buy Kindle books outside USA, and as some of you say: "Intuitive my ass". I don't like it. And I like less Apple SW to manage it.
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Old 01-29-2010, 08:17 PM   #10
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I owned several Macs in my life. Don't regret it one bit. But I did eventually switch to Windows for the software support.

I suppose I have some regrets towards my current computer case. It looks great, but has a serious design flaw in that the front panel isn't grounded properly (so if I don't discharge myself prior to touching it the computer will shut off). Also my initial 802.11G card, which burned out within a year!

Though the screen eventually cracked, I don't really regret owning a PRS-500. I will however wait for the plastic screens before considering purchasing another eInk device.

Last edited by Dylrob; 01-29-2010 at 08:52 PM.
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Old 01-29-2010, 08:46 PM   #11
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Sharp Zaurus and Creative Zen Sleek... both great products but their functionality was soon put to pasture in the marketplace by smartphones, etc.
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Old 01-29-2010, 09:28 PM   #12
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Nintendo DS. I never used the dang thing until I re-purposed it as an eReader for a few months before I bought my iPod Touch. Honestly, the games are stupid and overly priced.

I kind of regret buying my Touch. Not because the touch wasn't awesome, but more because I should have just bought an iPhone in the first place for the price I paid. In the long run it worked out fine because I sold the touch for nearly enough to pay for most of my iPhone, so no real loss.

Dell laptops. I used them for 4 years during college and the batteries sucked. I had tons of hardware problems, and the warranties were crap. I had a Latitude C640 and a D600. Both were better than the consumer models but I'd never buy one again.

Rosewill computer cases and power supplies. They're garbage. A bad power supply can also ruin your motherboard or other components. Just don't go there.

Nikon 50-200mm lens. I bought it to replace a broken 20-80. I should have just bought a new 20-80, because the 50-200 is no good for people pictures at all.

AMD Duron processors. I bought a couple of them to make cheap desktops for family members, and they caused me nothing but grief. I always spend about $200 on my procs now.
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Old 01-29-2010, 09:47 PM   #13
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Nintendo DS. I never used the dang thing until I re-purposed it as an eReader for a few months before I bought my iPod Touch. Honestly, the games are stupid and overly priced.
Err, I'm honestly curious, just what games did you try?

Quote:
Nikon 50-200mm lens. I bought it to replace a broken 20-80. I should have just bought a new 20-80, because the 50-200 is no good for people pictures at all.
The 85mm to 135mm range is classic for portraits. That works out to about 57mm to 90mm on DX. Which the 55-200mm certainly covers.

Of course photography styles vary. But believe me, if you said something like that to a portrait photographer they'd eat your face off.

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Old 01-29-2010, 10:32 PM   #14
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Let's see...my Cybook was never a big favorite with me, although my friend who bought it from me is quite pleased with it. (She didn't mind the sticky button when comparing the "used" price from me to the new Sony price).

My $1000 Toshiba Libretto. Cute, but never really functional.
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Old 01-29-2010, 11:54 PM   #15
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Erm all the mp3 players I've bought over the years - got several just sitting in drawers and gathering dust. When will I learn that I don't listen to music very often and therefore why do I need these things?

My iPod touch has solved that problem because I can listen to audio but use it mostly for Internet and email. I am using it right now (4.47 am) as I often suffer from insomnia and this little cutie is silent to type on plus I turn the screen brightness down so it doesn't wake hubby up. One of my best gadget purchases.

Wish I hadn't bought an expensive Sony camcorder as all I ever use is the video recorder on my cheap fuji camera which works perfectly well and is easier to carry around.

I didn't need that wacom intuos tablet so that's going up for sale this year. I like to think I'm an artist ! But I can't get used to drawing digitally - just doesn't work for me. Also need to get rid of the painter x software.

At least I do sell off most of my useless gadgets. Hubby keeps all his until they are utterly worthless and are cluttering up our loft space.
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