ALDI’s special buy sale category this Saturday is heavy on tech, with laptops, MP3 players and TVs all on the list. We’ve filtered through what’s on offer to identify what’s a good deal, what’s average and what’s worth avoiding.
As usual, ALDI’s gear is sold under its own store brand names, so if you’re a big-name-only shopper, look elsewhere. If you are tempted, you’ll need to be at your local ALDI close to opening time to be sure of scoring a bargain — the best deals often sell out quickly. Some readers report that you can get lucky and pick up some items being put out the night before if you’re in the store near closing time, but that’s not a guaranteed strategy. Virtually all ALDI stores open at 8:30am on a Saturday; you can check your local store hours on the ALDI web site.
Note that we haven’t tested these products; our comments are based on what you’ll pay for equivalent gear elsewhere. Several of the items are good value, but others (especially the cheaper deals) can be had at similar or lower prices whenever you like, so diving on the ALDI option isn’t necessarily wise.
On many of these products ALDI offers a 60-day no questions asked return policy. That’s welcome, but bear in mind that its presence or absence doesn’t affect your basic consumer rights: if a product fails or doesn’t meet the stated specifications, you’re entitled to a repair or a refund. (Saving a copy of the relevant product web page could be a sensible step.)
Medeon 15.6″ Notebook ($569)
You can get similarly sized notebooks with the same memory and a slightly less gutsy processor for around $500, but it’s rare to see a hard drive of 750GB. It’s not impossible — JB Hi-Fi has a similar Samsung notebook for $620, but that doesn’t include a TV tuner.
Our verdict: Good price for a basic notebook.
23″ Bauhn LED TV/DVD Player ($189)
Our verdict: Cheapest option we can find for the size.
1TB Dual-Tuner PVR ($169)
Our verdict: A fair deal, but you could go the cheaper USB drive route.
Clock Radio With iPod Dock ($39.99)
Our verdict: Not that compelling.
Creative SBS A220 2.1 Speaker System ($26.99)
Our verdict: An unremarkable deal.
Bluetooth Headphones ($24.99)
Our verdict: Skip it.
Sandisk 16GB USB Stick ($16)
Plenty of places
Our verdict: No bargain here.
Remote Control Caddy ($12.99)
Our verdict: Take it or leave it.
10-In-1 Universal Remote Control ($9.99)
Our verdict: OK but not astonishing.
4GB MP3 Player ($9.95)
Our verdict: If you put this in someone’s Christmas stocking, they will hate you.