The DealExtreme from which you can order is not the true DealExtreme

There was this totally awesome MetaFilter post about the FM3 Buddha Machine. It's a small plastic device inspired by previous "chant-boxes" - little plastic doodads that look like a small transistor radio, but are only able to emit a small selection of Bhuddish mantras.

As soon as I saw the post, I mentioned that m'notparticularlygoodfriends at DealExtreme offer some of the original chant-boxes for sale.

And then I found some even cheaper ones, and somehow managed to say something about them which a MeFi enthusiast considered at least +2 Insightful. I presume he's right, because I've got no bloody idea what this Buddhist lark's about.

Which, in itself, probably makes me the number-one global expert on the subject, given the way in which Bhudularity usually seems to work.

Yes, I really have bought one of the very cheapest, four-dollar, DealExtreme chant boxes.

If it turns out to alert me to the Möbius-strip nature of consciousness and midrange immediacy, I will make sure to tell you all.

7 Responses to “The DealExtreme from which you can order is not the true DealExtreme”

  1. j Says:

    You mean you'll be sure to *not* tell anyone, but if we see the Buddha on the road, we should kill him?

  2. Darien Says:

    Four bucks isn't too bad a price for enlightenment and release from the cycle of suffering. Maybe I'll get one too!

  3. kamikrae-z Says:

    I remember seeing one of these in my mates parents car a long time ago. I actually found the chanting quite soothing, but him being the jaded guy that he is insisted that after years of listening it was more annoying than anything else.

    Interestingly, the FM3 website has an illustration that shows a small buddha statue sitting directly behind the speaker inside the player - I can only guess that it's a bit like the little man in your fridge who turns on the light - in this case it's actually a little monk chanting through a giant megaphone.

  4. Jaymis Says:

    From your MeFi comment:

    ... one of those devices that appears to have been constructed by putting all of the components and a teaspoon of molten solder in an asbestos bag and shaking vigorously.

    Now imagine a whole line of people in a factory in China, all holding asbestos bags, sitting at desks strewn with components and tiny crucibles of solder. Beautiful!

    In slightly DealExtreme related news, I just noticed that they have those plug-your-monitor-in-to-USB DisplayLink devices there for reasonably cheap. Have you had any experience with them?

  5. RichVR Says:

    Jaymis, it seems to me that for the price of one of those cables you could get a cheap second video card. Then you would get 3D acceleration and decent resolutions.

    But then IAND (I Am Not Dan) :-)

  6. Daniel Rutter Says:

    Yeah, you never want to use one of the USB things if you've got the option of a regular video card. But if you're using a laptop...

    The early USB video adapters were quite expensive, and thus pretty underwhelming unless you were some sort of fanatical day-trader who HAS TO HAVE 15 SCREENS, DAMMIT! (Presumably many of those guys are now pawning their monitors.)

    The sub-$US100-odd generic USB video adapters look like a decent deal, though (he said, on the basis of zero personal experience). They're only likely to be any good for relatively static 2D stuff, though, and if you're not running Windows (I'd go so far as to say "32-bit Windows"...), I would not be surprised if you had problems.

  7. ex-parrot Says:

    For what it's worth, relatively recent Linux kernels support a few of these VGA-over-USB chipsets. Odds are fairly high that you'll be able to make the DealExtreme widgets work.

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