Search found 4318 matches

by protagonist
Thu Dec 01, 2016 9:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 898
Views: 101939

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

I also applied for Chase Fairmont visa. Yes, sounds great until you try to use your benefits. At least that was my experience. I got the card so I could stay in the London Savoy. I tried booking a year in advance and kept trying during the year. No dates available. I finally gave up and, since my g...
by protagonist
Thu Dec 01, 2016 8:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What exactly happened in Japan...and can it happen here?
Replies: 27
Views: 3100

Re: What exactly happened in Japan...and can it happen here?

Of course it can happen here. Anything can happen anywhere. You can come up with countless rationalizations and logical arguments to support a contrary opinion , but at the end of the day..... The future is unknown. And the probability of its occurrence over, say, a 20, 30 or 50 year time frame is a...
by protagonist
Thu Dec 01, 2016 8:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 3.01% IRA CD with 90 day penalty - Andrews fed credit union
Replies: 4
Views: 611

Re: 3.01% IRA CD with 90 day penalty - Andrews fed credit union

Check out this thread on Andrews: https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=203383 You will find some on this site that advocate bonds over CDs, and others who think CDs are a better, safer investment in today's environment. I am one of the latter. You really need to come to your own...
by protagonist
Thu Dec 01, 2016 8:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: another New York rental question
Replies: 39
Views: 2221

Re: another New York rental question

I regret making her feel terrible for accepting this job (there are million other places where one can lead a comfortable life). There are also a million people who would never want to live anywhere else. Sweet things are made of these. Who are you to disagree? NYC is expensive but people who want ...
by protagonist
Thu Dec 01, 2016 10:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pay off mortgage?
Replies: 107
Views: 6710

Re: Pay off mortgage?

Depending on those details, he could be setting himself up for a potential financial disaster spending all that cash OR everything could be perfectly fine afterwards. How can he be setting himself up for financial disaster if he has that equity in his home? In the rare case that he was "desper...
by protagonist
Thu Dec 01, 2016 12:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pay off mortgage?
Replies: 107
Views: 6710

Re: Pay off mortgage?

I have a 15 year 2.5% fixed interest rate mortgage. I have the cash, and I am tempted to pay it off given that I cannot see any safe investment at a higher after tax interest rate. Is there anything I am missing? Pay it off. Maybe it is a good financial move. I think it is, but regardless, you will...
by protagonist
Thu Dec 01, 2016 12:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: another New York rental question
Replies: 39
Views: 2221

Re: another New York rental question

I regret making her feel terrible for accepting this job (there are million other places where one can lead a comfortable life). There are also a million people who would never want to live anywhere else. Sweet things are made of these. Who are you to disagree? NYC is expensive but people who want ...
by protagonist
Thu Dec 01, 2016 12:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?
Replies: 57
Views: 4838

Re: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?

doesn't the majority of telephone support get outsourced to call centers? Isn't it highly likely the HP/Dell/Lenovo/etc phone support is all handled by very similar standards if not the same people? That's an interesting theory. I bet you are right. It would explain why so many people complain abou...
by protagonist
Thu Dec 01, 2016 12:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Naive question about laptop repair
Replies: 13
Views: 1019

Re: Naive question about laptop repair

I am trying to figure out how he will come down to $25 from $150. That's a huge gap. I could be wrong but I am guessing he is not going to come that far down. As per above, I wouldn't be buying it because I need a laptop. I just bought a Thinkpad. I don't need another computer. Buying the Thinkpad ...
by protagonist
Wed Nov 30, 2016 11:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13
Replies: 18
Views: 1200

Re: Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13

...I was originally investigating and bought a Thinkpad 13 from the Lenovo store with an i3-6100 processor, 256 Gb SSD and 8 Gb RAM for the low price of about $480 plus tax, free shipping. The silver one because it has a better display. It has an HDMI port, USB-C, flash card space, user replaceable...
by protagonist
Wed Nov 30, 2016 1:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Naive question about laptop repair
Replies: 13
Views: 1019

Re: Naive question about laptop repair

But hey if you're looking for a project, $25 is not going to break the bank. Yeah, exactly, which is why I would not offer more (though they are asking for $150 or so. "or best offer"). I already bought a new computer, so I don't need this one. I just came across it when shopping for the ...
by protagonist
Wed Nov 30, 2016 1:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?
Replies: 57
Views: 4838

Re: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?

Lenovo support used to be fabulous, and I think it's less fabulous now—but still much better than Dell. This morning I called Lenovo to change my order on my new Thinkpad- add a larger SSD. When I called the msg. recording said it would take 7 minutes for an agent to respond. It took 45 minutes. An...
by protagonist
Wed Nov 30, 2016 1:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: FIRE how do you live now
Replies: 48
Views: 4698

Re: FIRE how do you live now

started playing Saxophone (do it very poorly and my neighborn most likely is not happy) I started playing saxophone when I retired at 55. I am 64 now. I have 3 performances scheduled this month...two with my Latin ensemble and one with my jazz ensemble. Typically I get paid in pizza and beer (if I ...
by protagonist
Wed Nov 30, 2016 12:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Naive question about laptop repair
Replies: 13
Views: 1019

Naive question about laptop repair

If I can get a Dell XPS 13 "as is" on Ebay that is not working, missing a hard drive, with 4 Gb RAM and an i5-2467 processor, plus a battery (probably dead?) for about $25, and no cracks in the display (just minor cosmetic issues with the unit), is it worth buying? No other details known, ...
by protagonist
Wed Nov 30, 2016 11:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13
Replies: 18
Views: 1200

Re: Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13

Oh, word to the wise: If anybody else orders this computer, get the Silver version, not the Black. For some bizarre reason, the Silver one comes with a much higher resolution display for the same price. It's in the small print. I suspect Lenovo is trying to market silver in traditionally black Think...
by protagonist
Wed Nov 30, 2016 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13
Replies: 18
Views: 1200

Re: Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13

When I was first shopping for a system, I was a bit confused about the performance difference among different processors. However, now I use this site: https://www.cpubenchmark.net/ I enter the processor of the machine I am interested in to get a general idea of CPU performance. I find it difficult...
by protagonist
Wed Nov 30, 2016 10:57 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Great CD Promo! Andrews FCU 84 mo 3.01%
Replies: 83
Views: 8668

Re: Great CD Promo! Andrews FCU 84 mo 3.01%

I just opened the savings account and want to ACH money into that account to fund a CD. But at first glance, it appears I can only ACH in $5,000 per day. Am I reading that right? That seems low. What you need to do is connect an external bank and then push the money into Andrews from the external b...
by protagonist
Wed Nov 30, 2016 10:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?
Replies: 57
Views: 4838

Re: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?

Out of curiosity I was looking at comparing the xps 13 to the thinkpad 13 As close as possible to the xps 13 (that I have), the price difference was $899 (xps) vs $625.80 (thinkpad) The remaining differences were: XPS had 60Whr battery vs Thinkpad 42Whr = 1.5X in favor of XPS Thinkpad had 256 GB SS...
by protagonist
Wed Nov 30, 2016 8:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?
Replies: 57
Views: 4838

Re: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?

amd2135 wrote: Lenovo's ThinkPad support is miles better as well.


I found support for my Ideapad (original model Yoga 13 purchased early 2013) to be horrible. Though I had a Thinkpad from around 2004-2010 and support was quite good back then. That is encouraging that you found Thinkpad support good.
by protagonist
Wed Nov 30, 2016 8:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13
Replies: 18
Views: 1200

Re: Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13

Upgraded to 512 Gb SSD for about $100 more. It will be nice to be able to keep all my music and occasional videos on my hard drive without using supplementary storage as I have had to in the past. Plus I read that larger SSDs tend to be faster.
by protagonist
Tue Nov 29, 2016 10:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Upgrade Lenovo SSD or buy after-market?
Replies: 11
Views: 885

Re: Upgrade Lenovo SSD or buy after-market?

It's unanimous. OK, I'll try upgrading with Lenovo if it isn't too late.

Thanks to those who replied.
by protagonist
Tue Nov 29, 2016 10:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Great CD Promo! Andrews FCU 84 mo 3.01%
Replies: 83
Views: 8668

Re: Great CD Promo! Andrews FCU 84 mo 3.01%

I just opened the savings account and want to ACH money into that account to fund a CD. But at first glance, it appears I can only ACH in $5,000 per day. Am I reading that right? That seems low. Wow that's really low. My external bank has a similar limit though. Guess it'll have to be a check Switc...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 29, 2016 9:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Upgrade Lenovo SSD or buy after-market?
Replies: 11
Views: 885

Upgrade Lenovo SSD or buy after-market?

I ordered a Lenovo Thinkpad 13 today with a 256 Gb SSD. In retrospect, I decided I want to upgrade to a larger capacity SSD. I can pay about $100 more on my order and go for a 512 Gb stock SSD ("SATA3") from Lenovo. Or for a little more (about $130) I can buy an M.2 SATA drive like this Sa...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 29, 2016 7:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Would I notice a difference between an i3-6100 and an i5-6200 processor?
Replies: 20
Views: 994

Re: Would I notice a difference between an i3-6100 and an i5-6200 processor?

Browsing Intel's website it appears that the i5-6200U is nothing but an i3-6300U with Turbo Boost. i3-6100U i5-6200U Turbo Boost allows the processor to run faster than the "base" frequency if there is enough power/thermal headroom. My laptop has an i5-6300U and makes use of Turbo Boost v...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 29, 2016 7:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13
Replies: 18
Views: 1200

Re: Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13

Thanks! Input here, as well as reading countless user reviews, has led me to the conclusion that there is not a lot of difference in quality control between PC models sporting the same components.....they are all hastily built in probably the same factories in China, not extensively tested, and whet...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 29, 2016 7:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?
Replies: 57
Views: 4838

Re: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?

Thank you all for the valuable input....much better than what I got from googling (at least on a practical level, since benchmark performance scores don't mean much to me in terms of what I would actually experience). Input here, as well as reading countless user reviews, has led me to the conclusio...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 29, 2016 7:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Would I notice a difference between an i3-6100 and an i5-6200 processor?
Replies: 20
Views: 994

Re: Would I notice a difference between an i3-6100 and an i5-6200 processor?

Thank you all for the valuable input....much better than what I got from googling (at least on a practical level, since benchmark performance scores don't mean much to me in terms of what I would actually experience). With a small amount of trepidation, I decided to forego the $1000 machines I was o...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 29, 2016 1:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13
Replies: 18
Views: 1200

Re: Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13

Bogle826 wrote:I just picked up a similar set up - i5 and 258 ssd on the thinkpad 13. Price should be $503 - $50 (10% cash back), pretax.



Great price!
Currently the i5, 256 SSD, 8 Gb is pricing around $580. i3 is around $480. (all "discount price")

Do you like yours? Any issues?
by protagonist
Tue Nov 29, 2016 1:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Would I notice a difference between an i3-6100 and an i5-6200 processor?
Replies: 20
Views: 994

Re: Would I notice a difference between an i3-6100 and an i5-6200 processor?

My current computer has a Core i5-3317 processor @ 1.7 GHz.

If I buy the i3-6100 model , would I likely notice a difference in performance over my old computer (based on the processor)?
by protagonist
Tue Nov 29, 2016 1:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13
Replies: 18
Views: 1200

Re: Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13

reriodan wrote:What do you do on the computer?


Nothing particularly demanding, though I use it a lot.
Web surfing, word processing, minimal photo/video editing (nothing complicated), streaming movies and TV, Quicken, music, etc.
by protagonist
Tue Nov 29, 2016 1:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13
Replies: 18
Views: 1200

Wisdom of saving money and buying a cheaper ultrabook- specifically Thinkpad 13

I was looking at ultrabooks in the $800-1100 range, such as Dell XPS 13, HP Spectre, Microsoft Surface Pro, Asus UA 305 etc. Then I noticed a huge discount on the Lenovo Thinkpad 13. It sells for about $480 currently with an i3-6100 processor , 8Gb RAM and a 256 Gb SSD. For about $100 more I can get...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 29, 2016 1:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Would I notice a difference between an i3-6100 and an i5-6200 processor?
Replies: 20
Views: 994

Re: Would I notice a difference between an i3-6100 and an i5-6200 processor?

For the usage you describe, I cannot imagine you would notice much of a difference. Spring for a SSD over a spinning drive as that is likely to make a far larger improvement in lag time. Step off that usage and the answer will be different :D Thanks, Rob and others. I was considering getting an i3 ...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 29, 2016 12:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Would I notice a difference between an i3-6100 and an i5-6200 processor?
Replies: 20
Views: 994

Would I notice a difference between an i3-6100 and an i5-6200 processor?

I use my laptop predominantly for web surfing, watching videos, emails, music, word processing, Quicken, etc. I use it a lot, but not for anything particularly demanding- I don't do any gaming or serious film editing etc. I do stream TV and movies fairly often. Would I notice a significant differenc...
by protagonist
Mon Nov 28, 2016 10:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Love "mask me" addon for Chrome but can't change email
Replies: 2
Views: 525

Re: Love "mask me" addon for Chrome but can't change email

Not sure if you are aware, but Mask Me is no longer supported by the developers; it has been replaced by a service called Blur. Might have better luck accomplishing your goal with that service. Thanks. Yes, I know. But when I try opening a new "Blur" account it still reverts back to my ol...
by protagonist
Sun Nov 27, 2016 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?
Replies: 57
Views: 4838

Re: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?

Interesting about having a separate "travel computer". For most users (eliminating power users and those with specific requirements for work, etc), I would think that one computer would be all one needs these days. I have an ultrabook with a 13" screen- Yoga 13- i have issues with it,...
by protagonist
Sun Nov 27, 2016 1:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security spousal benefits for divorcee- 62 or 66 better?
Replies: 4
Views: 632

Social Security spousal benefits for divorcee- 62 or 66 better?

Mr X 's situation : -born between 1943 and 1954 -married over 10 years -divorced -not remarried -good health (physical and financial) - deferring his own SS benefits until age 70. My understanding from reading prior threads here on the subject is that Mr. X would best profit by starting to take spou...
by protagonist
Sun Nov 27, 2016 11:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?
Replies: 57
Views: 4838

Re: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?

Do you see any laptop on Amazon that gets great ratings at scale? I'm guessing it is a Macbook Macbooks and Chromebooks both tend to get excellent (4 star and above) ratings- my guess is because both play to a niche market and the products fit their niche (again, off-topic...don't want to argue the...
by protagonist
Sun Nov 27, 2016 11:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?
Replies: 57
Views: 4838

Re: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?

I agree with much of the above, but still that does not explain the big disconnect in this case to me. Perhaps poor reviews are directed towards models with less powerful processors, less memory, etc. I don't think this is the case...most reviews I have read have been for latest models with medium s...
by protagonist
Sun Nov 27, 2016 10:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Love "mask me" addon for Chrome but can't change email
Replies: 2
Views: 525

Love "mask me" addon for Chrome but can't change email

At one time I put "mask me" on Chrome on my computer using my gf's email address. I want to either change the email address to my own, or remove "mask me", reload it, and have the mail directed to my own email address instead of hers. I have tried everything obvious. Nothing work...
by protagonist
Sun Nov 27, 2016 10:16 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?
Replies: 57
Views: 4838

Why do reviewers love the Dell XPS 13 but users don't?

Reviewers across the board seem to lavish incredible praise on the Dell XPS 13- most choose it as the best ultrabook available. Here is an example from a reviewer I consider generally reliable: http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/the-best-windows-ultrabook/ Yet it gets mediocre reviews from users, who ...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 22, 2016 10:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HSBC Bank- Easy (???) $350 bonus
Replies: 44
Views: 6032

Re: HSBC Bank- Easy (???) $350 bonus

Follow-up on my experience: -I filled out the onerous application on Sept. 23. After sending documents, phone calls, etc. my account was finally opened and funded on Nov. 2. -Since then, I tried EFTs from Ally and from Chase, and neither clearly posted as "Direct Deposit" on my HSBC online...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 22, 2016 9:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement - Ten key years + Summary
Replies: 68
Views: 14413

Re: Retirement - Ten key years + Summary

Excellent summary, Peter Foley! Thanks. Just one correction: I believe there are many roads to Dublin. There appears to be only one road to Dublin. The M1. The others all terminate on the M50. https://www.google.com/maps/place/Dublin,+Ireland/@53.3239919,-6.5258808,10z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x4867...
by protagonist
Tue Nov 22, 2016 9:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Net vs gross expense ratio
Replies: 2
Views: 321

Re: Net vs gross expense ratio

Net is what you are actually paying. Fidelity is waving .02% of it's management fee. This is fairly common with funds of funds. It is hard for Fidelity to estimate what the correct management fee is. It has to estimate the size of the fund plus the expense ratio of the underlying fund. Easier to st...
by protagonist
Mon Nov 21, 2016 10:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Net vs gross expense ratio
Replies: 2
Views: 321

Net vs gross expense ratio

I have held FFNOX (Fidelity Four In One Fund) since the 90s....though the expense ratio is likely a bit higher than if I purchased separate component funds, I have not sold and invested in the individual funds because of large capital gains (tax and health insurance concerns). Fidelity posts a NET E...
by protagonist
Sun Nov 20, 2016 2:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rules of Thumb: Max House Value as % of Net Worth?
Replies: 109
Views: 9996

Re: Rules of Thumb: Max House Value as % of Net Worth?

I take it you're home is worth approximately $800,000: 5% x $800,000 equals $40,000. $18,000 is really inexpensive to operate such a nice house year over year. How much are your property taxes? It's not. I live in a college town in MA (MCOL?). My home is worth about $500K. Maybe a bit more now. Tax...
by protagonist
Sun Nov 20, 2016 2:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rules of Thumb: Max House Value as % of Net Worth?
Replies: 109
Views: 9996

Re: Rules of Thumb: Max House Value as % of Net Worth?

At 25%, a retiree would spend more than 50% of their annual income on homeownership. I suspect NYC is a special case here. Home ownership is probably much costlier (taxes, fees, insurance, cost of labor, etc) than many other parts of the country. It is also hard to generalize about retiree income. ...
by protagonist
Fri Nov 18, 2016 10:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rules of Thumb: Max House Value as % of Net Worth?
Replies: 109
Views: 9996

Re: Rules of Thumb: Max House Value as % of Net Worth?

Again devil's advocate: My fiancee got a windfall which she used to purchase a condo in Manhattan (no mortgage) for $200,000 shortly after 9/11. She and her daughter have lived there happily ever since. She owns virtually no stocks or bonds. If she sold it today, she would be a millionaire. It has a...
by protagonist
Fri Nov 18, 2016 9:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rules of Thumb: Max House Value as % of Net Worth?
Replies: 109
Views: 9996

Re: Rules of Thumb: Max House Value as % of Net Worth?

But I wouldn't want to retire with a $2M house and an $800K portfolio. Playing devil's advocate, why not? (reason below....) You have $2.8M in assets that you can sell, regardless. Like stocks and bonds, your home value is subject to gains and losses depending upon the market. And $800K goes a long...
by protagonist
Thu Nov 17, 2016 5:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Great CD Promo! Andrews FCU 84 mo 3.01%
Replies: 83
Views: 8668

Re: Great CD Promo! Andrews FCU 84 mo 3.01%

I'm not seeing the non-IRA certificate on their website as yet. There's also a blurb on depositaccounts.com stating that these specials have to be opened in-branch and aren't available online. Were you able to purchase the 7 year, 3% certificate online? This offer has existed for many months now. I...

Go to advanced search