Otterman speaks... (2003-2007)
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Otterman speaks...

Cycling, macintosh, natural history and life in Singapore - Archives

List of Categories : travel * museum * cycling * Singapore Naturalist * science * kakis * mangroves * movies * mac and the internet * meow * NUS * life in Singapore * lit * world *

Wed 08 Mar 2006

Retail therapy at Sim Lim Square

Category : mac and the internet

Teutoburg leads the way
It's not just the ladies who indulge in a little retail therapy; I venture out to Sim Lim Square with friends just about every year, with major sessions once every three years when market prices are favourable. Last year's 'expedition' was for a minor but critical purchase that I use everyday.

But my motivation for shopping must bee strong enough before I venture to SLS - work must be getting affected but what I need to buy and prices must be in a relatively 'low period'. Then I go with someone more hardware-savvy than me and there are plenty in the Mac community. So today it was time to finally do some upgrading on the hard working G4 at work with Teutoburg leading the way again.

First stop, Storage Studio
Here we grabbed a couple of 400 GB 72,000rpm Hitachi drives (made in Thailand) in order to create a boot-able RAID ($760.14) - or so we thought at the time; we're now reading up to find out just how good an idea it is. After all, I can use Super Duper! to mirror my data.

At any rate, I will now be able to run nightly backups for my picture archives, video clips, pdf bibliographies, presentations and server files for the several domains I maintain. I've been quite worried about all this going south one day as the existing hardisks and the two externals are almost filled to the brim.


Teutoburg installing a 512MB RAM stick.

Crabman sees red
I had promised the Crabman I'd get him his external hardisk and I opted for a $28 (before GST, but so cheap!) Zynet Color Polar 2.5" case (no faulty sets so far) + a 100GB 54,000 RPM drive (drive, case and GST = $267). I got an unmanly red colour that he will grumble about but not misplace!


Red external HD for the crabman!

VideoPro on the 5th
Second stop was VideoPro (we were redirected to the outlet on the 5th floor) where we picked up a Pioneer dual-layer DVD burner (110D) for $65.71 and two pieces of 512 MB Kingston PC-2700 (made by Convergence) for $65.71 each (I almost wept at the prices). Then a very helpful Seith (a German name, no lees) suggested we wait for the IT fair at Suntec, opening tomorrow. We were surprised but since we had been checking RAM and DVD drive prices on and off for about a year now, we were pretty satisfied with the current prices and decided not to wait.

I toyed briefly with the idea of a personal purchase, a Logitech USB Webcam but Seith suggested I get the older Webcam Pro (which he didn't have) which apparently has a better quality CCD sensor.


Hardisks and dual-layer DVD burner installed.

Z-NIX Trading Pte Ltd
Then it was off to Z-NIX Trading Pte Ltd for a couple of TDK DVD+RW ($2.50 each) and 10 Verbatim DVD+R dual layer discs (10 for $68). The helpful gentleman there always drops pointer during our CD-shopping days once again gave us more pointers: DVD-Rs he pointed out are compatible with older hardware (more than five years old); but that seemed to be about the only thing recommending it. For archival purposes, he suggested +Rs, and TDK and Verbatim and we talked a bit more about options for archiving data.

I grabbed some double-sided sleeves and for a moment there I thought they were paper napkins; yup, they come in pastel colours and of course I had to grab a pink bundle!

SGL Marketing
We had to drop in at SGL Marketing on level 2 for the compulsory visit to the long-time Mac vendor. There was a trolley of inviting G5s and fellow-G4 Desktop user Teutoburg motioned as if to grab the lot and run! AS we chatted with the helpful ladies there, they seconded the Logitech webcam but also did not have it. We forgot to get that elsewhere so Linda is ahead of me on that front!

The last gasp
I picked up a Philips USB SD/MMC card reader for $15 and the long-awaited 3rd party battery charger for the Lumix FZ30's batteries for $35 at Merdeka, a camera shop on the ground floor. There we discussed the capabilities of the Lumix FZ30 with the gentleman there, who agreed was an excellent purchase for a non-pro. And his price of $890 (before GST) was cheaper than prices in Holland Village, rats!

I am imprisoned in the museum this weekend for the NUS Open House so, RAID or no RAID, the G4 will be up and running, the photo work flow will be sorted out , data will be completely archived and finally backed up on DVDs for storage.

The thing about SLS that has always surprised me, there are so many vendors willing to share information and who are very plesant. It's why I keep going back to the same people each year and redirect friends there. Makes shopping less intimidating.

Now all I have to worry is about claming for all of this!

Posted at 3:03PM UTC by N. Sivasothi | permalink | , .