Digital Camera Shopping at BrandsMart USA and Fry’s Electronics

Earlier this month my fiancée and I got married, and she gave me a wedding gift of a new compact digital camera.

I’ve been in need of a new compact camera as my previous one broke, and we’re planning on travelling this fall.  We started looking at cameras a few weeks ago, but I was hesitant as I wasn’t in need of one yet.  It’s still a few months before we head out of town.

Knowing that I’ll keep putting it off until the last minute, my fiancée went ahead and got me one of the cameras as a wedding gift.  It was a nice one, but for the price that she spent there were more ideal cameras out there.  We returned the camera and I spent the next few days doing extensive research trying to find a new compact digital camera.

I narrowed the selection down to a few cameras.  The next step was finding a store that had them in stock so I could play with them.

Samsung's WB350F compact digital camera

Samsung’s WB350F compact digital camera

It turns out that BrandsMart USA had a great selection of digital cameras, and their prices were some of the lowest at the retail stores.  One of my favorite cameras was in the store, the Samsung WB350F, and it happened to be priced at about $170.  This camera caught my attention during my online research, but many other stores had it priced over $200.  If I was going to spend $170 on a camera, then I was going to do more research and make sure that it was a good one.

I did more research over the next couple of days and decided that this was going to be my next camera.  The reviews were extremely positive, the camera’s optical zoom is ridiculously good (21x), it has optical image stabilization, it can record video at 1080p, it has a bunch of Wi-Fi features, the camera’s retro look is awesome, and the camera’s settings include full manual mode, something that many compact digital cameras lack.  The camera’s onboard software also includes a bunch of special effects for both the photos and videos.  Creative people will have a ton of fun with all of the options with this digital camera.

It also took me a couple of days to finally accept the camera’s price.  I’m one of those people who does not like spending a ton of money, whether I do it myself or somebody spends it on me as a gift.  It makes me feel guilty and selfish.  As a result, I was determined to keeping the spending limit below $180 for the new camera, even if it was my wife spending her hard-earned money.  My original price line was $150, but the $170 price listed at BrandsMart USA was only a $20 difference.  Since the camera had so many features that I wanted, the $20 difference was a moot point.

When my wife and I returned to BrandsMart USA to purchase the camera, we were shocked that the price rose dramatically.  It turned out that the camera was actually on sale for $170, and that sale ended the previous day.  The new price was $210 (after an instant rebate).  No deal.

We talked to a salesman in that department and asked if there was anything they could do about the price, but the best he could do was lower it to an even $200.  Again, no deal.  It was hard enough spending $170 on a camera after my original price line of $150.  There was no way I was going to spend $200.  On a side note, it’s nice to know for future reference that the salesmen are able to work with you a little bit with the pricing. Read more…


Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Dan - June 17, 2014 at 6:42 pm

Categories: photography, Uncategorized   Tags: ,

Looking Like An Idiot When Using A Tablet Computer

Tablet computers are slowly becoming more and more mainstream as the technology improves and the overall prices drop.

Apple iPad tablet computer

Similar to the rise of smartphones and all of their advances over the past ten years, tablets many one day replace laptops.  I’m still not sold on getting a tablet yet, but I do recognize their potential and the handiness of using one.

That handiness, however, brings us to the subject matter of this article.

No, I’m not here to make fun of the retards who sit in coffee shops, trying to look sophisticated on their laptops and tablets when all they’re really doing is playing around on Facebook and Twitter, or just reading an e-book.  That cliché was exposed a while ago.

This article is about people using the camera feature on their tablet computer while on vacation.

I understand that the camera feature is handy for video chatting software such as Skype.  No problems there.  But when people choose to lug around their tablets through theme parks and other vacation destinations, and then use said tablet product as their camera for taking pictures, those people look like complete fools.

Last week my parents came home from their trip to the central Florida theme parks.  I asked them to keep an eye out for those idiots using tablets to take their vacation pictures.  Take a look a several scenes of those people in action.

tablet idiot - 01

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2 comments - What do you think?  Posted by Dan - July 10, 2012 at 6:26 pm

Categories: computers, photography, Uncategorized   Tags: , ,

Fear Mongering at Its Worst

Recently there was a major story on the top of the main Yahoo! page.

Climate-change disasters kill 300,000 a year” (an Associated Press article deemed scientific enough for the front page of Yahoo!)

Yeah, the dreaded “climate change” is killing all of those poor people and not from overpopulation, over consumption, corrupt local governments, horrendous living conditions, or lack of medical care to fight common diseases.  It’s climate change’s fault!

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Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Dan - May 30, 2009 at 2:14 am

Categories: computers, marketing, photography, weather   Tags: , ,

Airshow Pictures Are Finally Online

Last October, the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds were in town and I had the opportunity of attending the first day of the airshow.

The skies were clear, the crowds were heavy, and the Thunderbirds and other aerial demonstrations looked outstanding.

I shot away with my camera and took close to 1,700 photos that day, and now the best of them (about 170 photos) are part of my growing online photo album.  Hooray!

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Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Dan - May 20, 2009 at 3:35 pm

Categories: aviation, photography   Tags:

New Waterfall and Lake Burton Pictures

Last night and today I finally added more pictures to my online photo album hosted here at

This time around the photos are focused on recent Fourth of July trips up to Lake Burton in the mountains in the northeastern part of the state and some of the waterfalls in neighboring North Carolina.

Lake Burton photos.

North Carolina photos.

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Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Dan - May 16, 2009 at 6:05 pm

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Widescreen photos

Don’t you hate having one of those “Doh!” moments when you finally realize how to do something better?

Yeah, that just happened to me last night while I was editing photos for my photo album here on this website.

My main photo editing tool is Corel Paint Shop Pro XI.  I like it and it can do the things I need to do to my photos, like other photo editing software can do.  Well, I finally realized how to correctly modify pictures to turn my 4:3 images into 16:10 images that neatly fit on widescreen monitors.  And like how many things happen, it happened by accident.

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Be the first to comment - What do you think?  Posted by Dan - December 16, 2008 at 3:16 pm

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