Black Friday Shopping, $500 Pc, Cheap Gps

$500 PC: Parts. Black Friday Shopping Tips. Cheap GPS. Sidewalk Astronomy. HTPC Hardware for Blu-ray and HD DVD Movies, Your Fave $20 Headphones!

Happy Thanksgiving!

It's Black Friday, one of the busiest shopping days of the year... and that means insane bargains on all sorts of tech gear.

Why the bargains? They're 'loss leaders' designed to get you in the store. The store hopes you'll buy some more profitable stuff while you're there.

Car GPS systems are selling cheap all over the place this year... lots of great basic units for $200 or less, and some stores will have deals on decent units for under $100. (At least if you arrive early)

GPSLodge had a great list of Black Friday deals that got Patrick to wait a week before buying a new GPS system.

What do you 'give up' when you go with a cheap GPS unit? You generally get a smaller screen. (No big deal, you shouldn't be looking at the screen when you drive, anyway!) Aaaaand no MP3 players, Bluetooth hands free phone... you (should) get good solid GPS navigation, tho not much else. Think TomTom One, Mio C230, Garmin StreetPilot c330.

Oh... some form of 3D view is on most auto GPS systems these days, even the low priced ones.

Shopping online? Try searching for shopping codes/coupons before you purchase. Dell, for example, often has discount codes:

Dealcatcher

DailyDeals

DealTaker

RetailMeNot

SpecialOffers

CheapStingyBargains

CouponMountain

Everybody should have a chance to look at celestial objects thru a decent telescope, right? That's the aim of the Sidewalk Astronomers. Neha Tiwari met up with one of the local astronomers to talk about Comet Holmes, 'sidewalk astronomy,' and building telescopes on the cheap.

Aristrocrunk? The garb of 18th Century royalty meets Crunk? It's gotta be Heather's Pick Of The Week... one odd little band: Lord T and Eloise. You'll have to see it to believe it.

Code Red: Jessica's pick of the week is a pair of independent, alternative places on the web to buy unique gifts, Trunkt, very indy and artistic, and Velocity ... think design for modern living. Plus, for your basic everyday consumer electronics shopping: Become has comparison prices and reviews, all in an easily accessible page!

The Return of the Revenge of the $500 PC. I haven't built a $500 PC since 2004. This time around, I'm thinking HTPC more than Gaming PC, but, frankly, the only difference is how much you spend on your graphics card!

What's on the shopping list for this machine?

CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E4400

RAM: 2GB 800Mhz DDR2

Mobo: ASUS P5N-SLI, $54.99

Case: No brand w/ 400W power supply, $35

HD: Seagate 250GB, $70

DVD: Lite-On, 20x DVD-RAM $28

Graphics: ATI Radeon 2600 XT $108...