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Speakers

Get an Insignia 2.1-channel soundbar and wireless subwoofer for $49.99

It's a Bluetooth speaker to boot! Plus: Lifetime VPN for just $18!

CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on PCs, phones, gadgets and much more. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and follow the Cheapskate on Facebook and Twitter!


How is this thing only $50?!

Best Buy

Today I'm going to repeat myself twice -- first here, then in the bonus deal. Hey, some things are just worth repeating.

Yesterday I shared a TV deal, but neglected to mention the terrible, terrible speakers built into that TV and pretty much all other flat-screen TVs. It's just the unfortunate nature of the design: The speakers are necessarily small, and they usually face down or backwards. The result is almost always weak, tinny and muffled sound.

That's why I'm going to repeat myself and recommend a sound bar -- especially when you can get such a ridiculously good deal on one.

For a limited time, and while supplies last, Best Buy has the Insignia NS-SB515 2.1-channel sound bar with wireless subwoofer for $49.99 shipped (plus tax). It's also available via the company's Ebay store, should you prefer to purchase there for some reason.

It's pretty rare to find a TV-friendly speaker with a subwoofer at this price, but rarer still when it's a wireless subwoofer. That's a nice perk, because you can stick that baby off in a corner (or wherever there's an outlet handy) and not worry about an unsightly or too-short cord.

Another nice perk: This is a Bluetooth speaker as well, so pair your phone or tablet if you want to enjoy some tunes, podcasts or whatever when you're not binge-watching "Episodes" on Netflix.

As you might expect, though, an entry-level sound bar does come with a few caveats. First: There's no HDMI. Depending on the nature of your home-theater setup, that might be no big deal, or it might prove to be a hassle. Worst-case scenario, you'll have to use the sound bar's remote to change volume, not the TV's, cable box's or whatever you currently use.

Second, there's no display that gives you a numerical indication of volume level. Again, this might not be a problem if you're able to use your TV's remote to control the volume, as then it'll correspond to the onscreen display.

My $.02: These minor quibbles are a small price to pay in exchange for the huge improvement in sound quality you're about to experience. Especially when the actual price you're paying is just $50.

Over 1,400 Best Buy customers rated this 4.4 stars (out of 5) on average, and at least some of those reviews were likely based on the $150 regular price.

This is a really, really good deal, one that rivals any sound-bar savings I've shared in the past. Your thoughts?

vpn-unlimited-on-phone.jpg
VPN Unlimited

Bonus deal: Sorry to repeat myself, but if you travel a lot (or at all), you should use a VPN. It's without question one of the best ways to safeguard your data and identity while connecting to public hotspots.

I've shared VPN deals in the past, but this may be the single best one yet: StackSocial is offering a lifetime subscription to KeepSolid VPN Unlimited for $18 when you apply promo code VPNSD22 at checkout. 

That scores you a license that's good for up to five simultaneous devices tapping over 70 servers around the world. CNET hasn't reviewed VPN Unlimited, but PC Mag recently awarded it an Editors' Choice nod. At this price, it's a no-brainer buy if you haven't yet chosen a VPN.