Accessories Product Guide

Accessories

An accessory is a product designed to complement and aid in the function and performance of another product. Simply put, they're those little products that you might see hanging on the walls of many stores. Some wary customers may think that these products may not be necessary - something that a store might put up to increase sales or profits. A wise customer realizes that some products require accessories for basic functioning and, often, to promote top performance and use of the product.

What good would a Videocassette Recorder (VCR) or Camcorder be if you didn't have a videocassette to record on? The videocassette is an accessory and an essential product to consider when purchasing a VCR or Camcorder because the tape usually is not included in the packaging. You need to buy the tape separately. How would you feel if you bought a Camcorder, brought it home, and (when you're ready to try it out) realize you can't use it because you didn't buy the tape? Compared to the price of the camcorder, the tape's cost is relatively insignificant. It is, alas, essential for operation and use.

Most portable CD players use battery power but hardly any actually include batteries. You can't enjoy listening to CDs on this player unless you've bought the batteries it uses. I sometimes observe people walking and jogging while holding their CD players in their hand. It appears awkward. Many exercise trainers believe that those who hold their players that way are actually confounding the benefits of the effort. The arms don't move naturally, the body positioning is slightly askew. Getting a CD Player case can solve this. You simply strap the case around your waist and run ahead. Some cases even have space for extra CDs and headphones. By the way, one of the best ways of improving the sound of your CD player is by getting better headphones. These are just a few accessories that help you use your CD player for the best of your needs and the highest of pleasure.

Here's a list of some important accessory types for some of the products we carry.



Digital Cameras


Digital cameras use batteries. Many use AA while some use proprietary batteries. A digital camera is like a pocket computer and, when you're taking pictures at high resolutions, really use battery power rapidly. Of course, you can buy dozens of alkaline batteries that may be used only once. It might be better for your budget if you bought rechargeable batteries and a charger. These batteries can hold considerable power and may be recharged up to 1,000 times.

Most digital cameras store images on digital memory cards. There are over 6 different memory card formats and each camera usually uses one or (sometimes) two formats. Though a card is often supplied with a camera, it usually can only store a few pictures. To maximize use of your camera, it's advisable to get a card with a larger memory capacity. For a camera with less than 2 megapixel resolutions, 64MB is advisable. For 2 to 4 megapixel resolutions, 128 to 256MB is suggested. For 4 megapixels, or more, 256MB or more is often the right choice.

Certain computer printers have slots that accept some of these memory card formats. This feature can be helpful if you want to print images directly from the card, without turning the computer on.

There are also Card Readers. These are cables that accept your memory card on one end and have a port (usually USB) for connection to your computer. Capable of 2-way communication, you can transfer images to and from the computer, quickly, easily, and conveniently.



Home Theater


One of the major advantages of home-theater is the sound. It's called surround sound and is designed to copy the encompassing listening experience you'd experience in a movie theater. Most have 5 different channels (and speakers) to distribute sound. There's also a 6th speaker, a subwoofer, which handles really low frequencies that add the richness of theater sound to your home. Coincidentally, the sound used in HDTV broadcasts follows this 5.1 channel format.

If you're buying a new TV, especially a new wide-screen or Plasma model, forget about the stereo speakers that come with it. Consider getting a home-theater sound system. They usually have a DVD player (also plays audio CD), a radio, and the 6 speakers required for digital surround. This is an accessory, too, because it delivers a whole new level of experience to your enjoyment of video and television.



Computers


You've just bought your first computer. As a rule, desktop models do not include a monitor. Without a monitor you can't use your computer. This is a must-have accessory. The main reason why computer manufacturers don't include a monitor with a desktop computer is simple. People buy computers for many different purposes and look for different things in a monitor (i.e. screen size, type of screen, sound output).

Not as necessary, but really important, is a printer. Do you just want to print text? Would you like to print pictures? These influence your choice of a printer.

Are you interested in networking 2 or more computers together? There are wide selections of networking accessories.

You also need cables to connect the printer and monitor to your computer. Though monitors usually come with a cable, printers usually do not.

Will you be talking to people over the Internet? You might want to consider a computer microphone/headset.

Did you forget blank CD or DVD recordable discs for use in a CDRW or DVDRW drive? What about software (programs) with utilities, games, office suites that you might want to use on your computer? Did you consider a book to help you use your computer (many computers do not include comprehensive instructions)?



Surge Protectors


These are accessories themselves. If you're spending considerable money on a TV, computer, audio system, or appliance, you should seriously consider purchasing a surge protector.

It's a power strip with built-in circuitry that can absorb fluctuations (peaks and dips) in AC electrical current, the energy used to power most of these products. Weather conditions can result in electrical surges that can flow through your equipment with damaging results. A surge protector helps prevent that from happening. With more people using phone lines for Internet access, many surge protectors will also protect against signal peaks in your telephone lines.

Many surge protectors include an insurance policy that covers equipment plugged into it. We strongly advise considering one of these as a must-have accessory. Prices range from less than $10 to over $1,000, depending on your needs.



Repair Master Warranty Extensions


Virtually every product we sell includes a manufacturer's warranty. A warranty means that the manufacturer will pay for service or parts charges if their product becomes defective when used as intended.

With exceptions, most products are covered for 90-Days parts and labor, and 1-Year parts only. A Repair Master Warranty Extension extends the period covering labor charges by a year or more.

Though most products remain healthy, this is like an insurance policy. Labor charges for a repair can cost $75 or more. You can get a 1-Year Repair Master extension for, usually, under $40. It's an accessory for potential saving of money through the use of the product.



Summary


Accessories are very important to promote use and optimal use of any product you purchase.

Our descriptions often include a list of accessories that many people choose when they buy products from us and that we feel are important for your consideration.

You need a sense of wisdom and smarts to appreciate how important these accessories are. Our pricing helps make them even greater values for you. You'll be happier buying and choosing accessories from J&R.





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