Macspiration 45 – 10 Frugal Tips

On July 25, 2006, in Macspiration, by Donny Yankellow


This week I decided to make a list of ways to use your computer to put some money in your pocket, keep some money in your pocket, or just ways to spend your well earned cash more wisely. I guess it depends on how you look at it.

1. Don’t throw away your old OS CDs. Either keep those OS9 and old OSX CDs for emergencies or for your friend’s emergencies, or sell them on eBay. You can get upwards of $30 for your 10.3 installation set, and OS9 is really popular.

2. I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again: When shopping for a new computer, check Apple’s refurbished products. You can find great deals, and the money you save can go towards Applecare, more memory, a printer, an iPod or whatever. My favorite thing about an Apple refurbished product (besides the price) is that it comes with a 1 year warranty. This is the same warranty you would get with a new product.

3. Search the internet for reviews before buying a new piece of hardware or software. I always hunt out reviews on digital cameras before buying one. If 9/10 people say they hated a product you were looking into, that is a good indication to look for something else.

4. Don’t buy generic media for burning to CD or DVD. Sure generic media is cheaper, but cheaper isn’t always better. My friend bought a spindle of generic CD-Rs once. Half of them ended up in the trash because they wouldn’t burn properly. You can lose more money by buying the cheaper generic then spending a little more on a name brand.

5. Watch the sales in the Sunday paper. Blank media, printers, monitors, etc. Are always going on sale.

6. Printing photos? Paper brand really does make a difference. If you want the best quality print you can make yourself, buy the paper brand that corresponds to your printer brand. I wasn’t a believer until I bought Canon paper for my Canon printer. What a difference!

7. Shop around on the internet before buying at your local store. A lot of times you can find the same thing that your local store has on the internet, but a lot cheaper. Just be aware of shipping prices. A lot of items might be $20 cheaper online, but some places charge outrageous shipping fees which wipe out the bargain. A great resource for comparing online shopping is Resellerratings.com.

8. Getting a new computer and you don’t know what to do with the old one? Sell it on eBay. If you don’t want to sell it on eBay, donate the computer to a local school and get a tax deduction. Schools are happy to give you a donation letter for old technology.

9. Speaking of schools- If you are an educator or student, don’t forget about education discounts. Apple has education discounts in their education store. There are also online stores that give great discounts on software and other hardware. The discounts on Adobe software are unbelievable. Two great places I shop at all the time are AcademicSuperstore.com and CCVSoftware.com. Both of these places will require proof of your academic eligibility.

10. Want a faster computer but can’t afford one? Try adding more memory to your computer. Memory is the first place to start when you want to give your computer a speed boost. It is also the cheapest. Some computers will even allow you to upgrade the processor. For a couple hundred dollars you can double the speed of your computer with a new processor.
Have any money saving tips? Leave them below.

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