New TV, Blu-Ray player, and surround sound system

After a week or so deliberating we finally decided what to do with the extra money we received from our medical expense account refund. Several options were available from paying off more of our debt to putting away extra money in savings. However, we had already put a significant amount of money towards debt this year and I’ve established two savings accounts since November. We’ve been living pretty frugally for quite some time and decided instead to treat ourselves to a new home theater system.

Starting with a sofa from World Market snagged for $300 in a sale we added a TV from Costco that we found discounted in the Superbowl sales. A week later World Market were having another sale, this time on rugs, and so we bought a new area rug for in front of the sofa for 50% off; another bargain at $99. It’s hand-woven and the perfect size for our new sofa.

Next up on the list was a BluRay player. We still had a little budget left but decided to go with a cheaper model. We weren’t interested in paying for a whole bunch of high-end BluRay features and chose instead to go with the $150 Samsung BDP1600. That turned out to be a colossal mistake and the following day I learned a lot about BluRay players and why the PS3 "slim" was the way to go for a home BluRay player.

Our final purchase pushed us a little over budget (isn’t that always the way?) but we wanted to complete the home system with a 5.1 surround sound decoder and speaker set. Thankfully the release of 7.1 systems has driven the prices on 5.1 through the floor. Searching around at Frys we found this Onkyo 5.1 decoder and speaker set on sale for $329.

So far we’ve seen the Dark Knight, Zombieland, and Watchmen on BluRay in 5.1 surround sound. It’s the first time in the three years that we’ve been together that we’ve sat at home and watched a movie together. I am usually busy coding, playing, or blogging at my computer while keeping one eye on the TV. Having the couch and full audio visual system has made it more of an event and lets us enjoy movie nights together at home.

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