Buy only the amount of electronics you must have to survive to your next paycheck

Consumer electronics prices continue a weird downward spiral. I posted recently about my beloved iRiver iHP120. I scored an open-box special from BestBuy at just under $300---new ones went for $339. When I was choosing a new LeapPad book for Boy's birthday, I glanced at the MP3 players again and got one of the nastiest buyer's remorses of my life.

They had put their existing stocks of iHP120's on clearance for $269. Making room for the 40GB model? Maybe. Or maybe they're making way for a player with a screen that shows JPEGs and BMPs too. Same MSRP as the audio-only player.

That remorseful incident was last Friday. Today, browsing at a CompUSA, I saw they still had their iHP120's at $329.

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