Don’t Buy at Circuit City Liquidations, Yet

I checked out my local Circuit City’s Closeout sale today around 10:30 a.m. and was shocked at the crowds. This was honestly the most crowded I’d ever seen the store. This is the CC on Elston in the Logan Square area of Chicago.  I’m guessing the holiday helped. But during week one of the liquidation I did not find one deal to be had. Want a new netbook? Lenovo’s S10 was priced at $349. How much is it on Amazon? $349.

I finally got a hands-on of HP’s new TouchSmart set-up which was an open box item only. It was priced at $1199 as an open box price and sale price. It’s $1399 new on Amazon. The open box unit had a broken keyboard. It was missing four keys and wouldn’t type on screen.

How about for the gamer?

Every game was 10% off, so if you were buying a new title – usually $49 -- you were basically saving the Chicago sales tax of 10%. However, I found many PC titles marked up. This CC has a really nice PC selection but older games like City of Villains were priced at $39.99. Even the deluxe edition on Amazon is $15. Gears of War (the original) on PC was marked up to $39.99. It’s $27.99 on Amazon. I could go on and on with the PC games and price hikes.

Guitar Hero III bundle for Wii with all the instruments was $184.99, again exactly the same as Amazon and no extra discount on that price.  

If you were just looking for DVDs the prices were also jacked up. Every new DVD was priced at $21.99. Typically Circuit City and Best Buy price new DVDs at $19.99. So the 20% off would save you about $1.30. I just can’t believe they went through the trouble of replacing all those price stickers. Have you ever tried to take one of those off a gift before? They’re frickin’ sticky. I’m not up on DVD box set prices but they didn’t seem like a great steal to me.

 It didn’t seem like the prices/stickers had been changed on new CDs, but CC’s new CD prices are always high if they’re not on sale, in the $13-$18 range for every disc. CDs were also 20% off.

Word to the wise, wait out the liquidation sale until the discounts go up. I went to a Circuit City in Deer Park which shuttered in the last round of closings, and got CDs at 40% off which were a good deal.  For the tech savvy in need of a retail fix, stick to MicroCenter if you have it, NewEgg, Amazon and other e-retailers if you don’t.