Thought I'd take a reader request today. Cheapskate fan Tom told me that he's looking to upgrade the RAM in his desktop, and wanted to know if I could steer him to a good deal on 4GB modules.
Your wish is granted, Tom! Buy.com has the Kingston HyperX Genesis 4GB DDR3 memory module for $29.95 shipped. A $10 mail-in rebate (PDF) drops the price to $19.95, which makes this one of the best deals on a 4GB stick (with these specs, anyway) I've ever seen.
The HyperX is a 240-pin DDR3 module with a 1,600MHz clock speed. You can use it alone or with additional sticks, though if you're adding it to existing RAM, make sure all the specs match up exactly.
If you're replacing existing RAM, check your system manual to make sure your motherboard supports this size and speed.
The good news is that you can get up to two rebates per household, so you can buy a pair of these modules. Translation: 8GB of high-speed RAM goodness for a mere 40 bucks. (Do note, however, that you'll need a 64-bit operating system--like, say, Windows 7 x64--to take advantage of that much memory. The 32-bit flavors of Windows can address only 3.5GB max.)
This is a great way to get a nice performance boost on the cheap. That said, I have a quick and informal survey question: how many of you are still using desktops? I've all but abandoned them in my house. (Not entirely, though; I still have one pulling media-center duty--and doing a killer job of it.)
Bonus deal: As I've discovered this summer, pocket camcorders are great fun for kids. Ben's Outlet has the refurbished Creative Vado HD 4GB pocket camcorder for $34.99 shipped. It's available in your choice of colors--red, white, or black--and it comes with a 90-day Creative warranty.