Save or splurge: The office

To get the most for your money, you need to know two things: when the good stuff is worth paying extra for and when the economy choice is plenty good enough.

Dell XPS M1330 | starting at $1,300
Laptop
Dell XPS M1330 | starting at $1,300
Save or spend: Spend
Intel's latest mobile processor, the Core 2 Duo "Santa Rosa," launched in May to critical praise of its high speed and energy efficiency.

Since it's the beginning of a product cycle, buying now allows you to future-proof yourself against a next generation of software that can't be handled by lesser processors, says Rob Enderle, PC industry analyst.

You can get the processor in a Mac or PC costing around $1,500. PC users, look for one with 2GB of RAM and Windows Vista.

This ultra-thin Dell has all the goods and, well, it comes in this irresistible red. (Mac users may want to wait until Apple launches its new operating system, Leopard, due this fall).

Desk chair

Laptop

Printer

Shredder
Leisure stuff Don't handicap your wallet by paying too much for the latest gear. (more)
The kitchen Bring home the bacon and fry it up in a stainless steel, aluminum-core pan (more)
The living room It doesn't take a Hollywood budget to feel like you've got front-row seats. (more)
Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer LIBOR Warning: Neither BBA Enterprises Limited, nor the BBA LIBOR Contributor Banks, nor Reuters, can be held liable for any irregularity or inaccuracy of BBA LIBOR. Disclaimer. Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.
Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer LIBOR Warning: Neither BBA Enterprises Limited, nor the BBA LIBOR Contributor Banks, nor Reuters, can be held liable for any irregularity or inaccuracy of BBA LIBOR. Disclaimer. Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.