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Greetings, cheeps! Who's ready for the weekend? Me me me! But, first, a question: Do you think you'll buy an HTC Vive or Oculus Rift VR headset? I realize there's nothing cheap about them (with starting prices of $800 and $600, respectively), especially considering the desktop horsepower you'll need.
But based on the demos I've seen lately, this is must-have gear. And so I'll start keeping my eye out for affordable VR-friendly desktops, because spending another $1,500 doesn't sound like my idea of fun. Would you welcome such desktop deals? Or is a full-blown VR rig not in your immediate future?
On to business. I'm a sucker for beautiful smiles, Ghirardelli brownies, any sort of remote-controlled vehicle and, of course, good deals on multifunction printers.
Like this one: Walmart has the HP Envy 5643 all-in-one for $59, with free shipping or store pickup. (That doesn't include sales tax, natch.) Regular price: $99.
The Envy 5643 prints, scans and copies -- all in color, of course -- but doesn't fax because, let's face it, who sends faxes anymore? If you raised your hand, consider an app like Scannable, which makes it ridiculously easy to scan multi-page documents and deliver them via e-mail. I realize that's still not faxing, but, seriously, it's time for faxing to die.
Two important things about this printer. First, it's wireless, so you can stick it wherever. And although the product page doesn't mention it anywhere, the Envy supports AirPrint (but not, alas, Google Cloud Print). I learned this in the Envy 5643 user guide, which also revealed another interesting unmentioned tidbit: The printer offers automatic duplexing -- that's double-sided printing in layman's terms.
Second, it has a touchscreen instead of the usual button-laden control panel. Everything is better with touchscreens.
CNET hasn't reviewed this model, but the nearly 250 Walmart customer reviews average out to 4.5 stars -- pretty impressive. Meanwhile, over at Amazon, the similar Envy 5660 scored a 4.3-star average from over 800(!) buyers. If there's a common complaint, it's that the initial setup can be a bit confusing.
Now for the really good news: Replacement ink is reasonably priced, with combo packs (one black cartridge, one tri-color) selling between $30 and $40, depending on whether you go remanufactured or HP brand. That's not bad. And like I always say: The ink's gonna cost you no matter what, so you might as well get the best deal you can on the printer!
Bonus deal: One of my favorite dirt-cheap deals is back! For a limited time, Teviwin (via Amazon) is offering its 12-pack of 2-in-1 stylus pens for $7.99, shipped free with Prime. That's after applying coupon code NQU8ZEGR at checkout. This colorful assortment features a ballpoint tip at one end and a capacitive stylus tip at the other. The reviews are overwhelmingly positive, and even stand up to Fakespot scrutiny.
Bonus deal 2: Game time! Prepare to sacrifice your weekend (and then some) to Just Cause 2, currently on sale for just $3.74. It's an open-world action game that GameSpot called "ridiculous in the best possible way" (and then went on to rate an 8.5 out of 10). Basically, if you like to shoot virtual guns (the only kind worth shooting, IMHO), blow stuff up and use a grappling hook in ways that will make you giddy, this is a must-play game. For less than the price of your average venti coffee.