July 16th, 2024

Cables, Best Buy, and Ignorance

I went to Comcast to try to get another one of their crappy Motorola HD DVR boxes, and was very pleased to find out a new box has been released. The only problem? It has HDMI output instead of DVI, which is what my plasma uses to connect. Since they are really the same video signal, with just different plugs, I expected a cheap converter to be provided from Comcast, since – if nothing else – I have given them about $2,000 a year for the past several years. But no dice (even after being somewhat of a pest in the Comcast store). Next stop: Best Buy, where I find they stock this converter (from Monster) for over $30. My only other option is to buy this cable for $60.

Fortunately, I know to head over to newegg and find this converter for $3.99. Since shipping was higher than the product, I threw in the coolest and tiniest 2gig thumb drive for another $13. (I love this little thing.) My whole purchase and shipping was still less than the cost of the overpriced Monster option.

Cables are cables, and those that spend a ton on expensive ones are wasting their money. Since making my newegg order, this article came out which really sums it up best – you could do just as well with a coat hanger as these fancy overpriced cables.

I blame both consumers and retailers for this situation, but consider the retailers most at fault for providing such limited options. With no $4 converter at Best Buy – the largest consumer electronics retailer in the US – the consumer has no reference to even question the pricing of the Monster adapter. It is an abusive and manipulative use of their position, and obviously such a disservice to their own customers.

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 gaanjaawookie // Apr 17, 2008 at 8:55 am

    I totally agree. I was in the same situation when trying to hook my Mac up to my new Sony LCD. Unfortunately, I fell for the $30 monster option. I’m such an immediate gratification junkie.

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