Monday, February 13, 2012

Researching Decisions

I have always been a pretty careful shopper for most kinds of purchases. I'm as guilty as the next person when it comes to the occasional impulse buy of clothing or a book or music, but when it comes to major purchases, I usually slow way down and do a lot of research before I commit myself to anything. I look at Consumer Reports, I check web forums, I ask friends, I delay gratification while deciding whether I really want what I think I want. At least I try to!

So when Sweetie's DVD player broke, I was the one who said "whoa, let's check things out here and not be hasty." First I went to Consumer Reports. I saw that Blu-Ray DVD players now seem to be pretty much the norm, and I was attracted by the fact that they all seem to allow streaming video from Netflix. I'm not a big movie or TV watcher, so I'd been on the 2-DVD-a-month plan from Netflix and was perfectly happy with that, but being able to stream an occasional movie or old TV show appealed to me. So I found a Blu-ray player that had the features I wanted and good ratings and found it at an online retailer for a good price.
A few days later, it arrived, we set it up, and everything was good. We had a little trouble getting the streaming to work at first, but it turned out that all I needed to do was switch my Netflix plan to one that allowed unlimited streaming (duh). We watched a few episodes of Downton Abbey and were happy as clams.

We were so happy, in fact, that we almost immediately decided to get another player for the bedroom when we came across almost the same model for a really good price at Costco. We didn't think too much about it-- after all, we'd already done all that research. But in retrospect, I wish I'd thought things through a bit more! After finishing season 1 of Downton Abbey, I wanted to start watching season 2, but it's not available on Netflix yet, or any of the other services we can access on the Blu-Ray player. But I could buy access to watch the whole season 2, both the episodes already available and the new ones as they come out, via iTunes for $19.99. If I had bought an Apple TV instead of a second Blu-Ray player, we could watch them on the TV. The other cheaper option would be to buy a composite AV or HDMI cable adapter so I could plug my phone or laptop into the TV. Of course, the show is still airing on PBS so we could just try to watch the new episodes the good old-fashioned way, but we've already missed a bunch, and we don't have any way to record future ones if we're not home.

In the scope of life's worries, having to wait a few months to watch more episodes of a guilty pleasure soap opera disguised as high-brow drama is really not a big deal. Speaking as someone who has lived without a TV for most of my life and would usually rather read a book, I can't believe I'm even posting about this issue! But it does go to show that you should explore all options before acting too fast on any purchase. And please let me know if there are any other options I should be exploring to watch this show!!


Anonymous said... is your friend for all current episodes of Downton Abbey season 2, they expire 3/6/12

Anonymous said...

I second the above! LOVE Downton. I watched the whole first season on Netflix in like 2 days and am now watching on as they air.

how to trade forex said...

The last months a made a Tv-show marathon:)

credit card debt said...

Always be a smart shopper,don't ever be impulsive especially when you are purchasing some major staffs. Check consumer reports on consumer forums to know product reviews. Think quite a times that whether purchasing that thing will be a wise decision or not.

Hazzard said...

We use an Xbox 360 and an Apple TV which gives us access to multiple video libraries. I also LOVE the ability to send video from my Iphone or Ipad to the TV and also love the ability to control the Apple TV from my phone. Yes, I've become an Apple Fan Boy. UGH. Anyway, I highly recommend the Apple TV if you have an Iphone. Don't buy it from Apple though. We have a chain on the west coast called "Fred Meyer" (part of the Kroger corp). They have 10% off coupons for electronics every now and then which will drop the price a bit. You might also be able to get a better price with corporate discounts, depending on where you work.

Hope all is well!!

gold buyer nyc said...

that is great

Anonymous said...

Roku is inexpensive (I think you can get one for $50) and lets you stream from If you have Amazon prime, you can stream a bunch of stuff for free on the Roku.

We just bought the whole 2nd season of Downton for $15.

Adrienne said...

Our local library carries the Downton DVDs... Sometimes you may have to wait for a disc depending on where you are in the series, but we can watch for free!