Monday, November 28, 2011

I'm Totally Technologically Challenged

I have decided that I need an adviser to accompany me when doing any type of shopping for electronic items.

It used to be that you'd go find a TV that you liked and just buy it.

As a kid, I remember my mother looking for a console TV, in a maple cabinet, that matched the end tables in the living room.  After we were married, those types of TV's had gone out of style and we bought a "portable" model.  Of course that portable model required a fork lift to move because it weighed approximately 100 pounds.  But, you didn't have to worry about how the television set was going to work.  It was all there...nothing more to buy.

Now, there are so many choices it's just ridiculous!  Plasma, LCD, LED and there's even a couple of different types of LED's! 

Our huge 52" TV is losing it's picuture quality so I told DH late Saturday afternoon that we should just run out to WalMart and do a little price shopping to find out how much it would cost to replace.

It was a nice surprise to see that prices are less than half of what the old TV cost five years ago.  They even had one 46" left over at the Black Friday price and we decided to just buy it and not do a lot of running around.

DH and I got the TV home, unpacked and placed in the entertainment center in just a few minutes. It's the perfect size and has wonderful picture quality but, the sound is terrible!  I had a transistor radio back in the 60's  (does anyone even remember those?) that had better sound quality.  I sent DH back to WalMart to buy some external speakers to fix that.

Add another $100 + for the speakers and our "bargain" TV isn't so much of a bargain.

Two hours later,  DH has done everything he knows to do and cannot get the speaker system to work. By that time,  I'm mad and just told him to return it and I'd go find a better speaker system on Monday.

Today, I drove to the next town and went to a store that has salespeople who know what they're selling and can help technologically challenged folks like me.  The salesman understood my dilemma and proceeded to offer me several different options.   Would I like a complete home theater package, ($1000 +), a surround sound system, (just under $500), or maybe a Blue-ray player, (just under $400)?    Each of these would provide great sound quality.

WHT?  All I need is a couple of decent speakers.....information overload here!  Danger, Will Robinson!!!

 I explained to the salesman that we'd tried, unsuccessfully, to install a speaker system and he even showed me how to use the TV's onscreen menu to activate the audio jacks on the TV.  The menu he showed me had more options than the one on our TV and I told him I had been unable to find anything indicating exterior speakers. But, hey, I'm pretty challenged, so I laughed and told him I'd figure it out later. After much discussion, I bought a home theater system.

DH's working with a friend today so I thought I'd do as much as I could to be ready for him to install the new speakers when he gets home.  To simplify things, I called the tech support for the TV thinking they'd tell me what we needed to do to divert the audio from the TV speakers into the speaker system.  That way, DH and I wouldn't have to try and decipher the owner's manual! LOL!

Well, I found out that it was not our fault that we couldn't get the first set of speakers to work properly.  The TV we bought has multiple connections on the back for various types of electronics but not an audio jack!

While looking at the TV's I was much more concerned with picture quality and size of the screen than the plug ins on the back.  I do remember asking about connecting the DVD player and satellite box and being told that the connections were there for those items.  Who knew that you probably need to attend a two day seminar to even know which specific questions to ask when purchasing a simple TV? 

Now that big ole' whonker has to be disconnected, reboxed and returned to the store so we can buy one that will work with the speaker system!   Grrrrrrr!!!!

***Edited at 8:45 p.m.**** Just got home from returning the TV to WalMart and a mad dash trip over to Shawnee to Sears where we found a good deal on a home entertainment package and 46" LED TV.  Am still kicking myself for not going there to start out instead of hassling with WalMart!


Carrie K said...

Doesn't technology just give you a headache sometimes? Most of the time, if I have a problem, I just call my son! He is 27 and very tech smart!!

Vickie said...

Linda I hope you can laugh next week when you are watching and LISTENING to your new TV.