Muschamp Rd

Shopping in Beijing

October 7th, 2005

The other day, Tian Ming and I went shopping. Tian Ming is my official Tsinghua School of Economics and Management MBA conversation partner. Now I’m not much of a shopper, but we wanted to do something besides just sit and eat. Especially considering how poor my Chinese is.

Silk Street Market building

We met up at 10am and took the subway to Yong An Li station and went to the Silk Street Market. This is where all the middle age foreign tourists go to buy their souveniers. From silk scarfs to knock off brand name goods if it is a popular souvenier you can buy it at Silk Street. Not all shoppers are foreigners though, in fact the majority are probably Chinese. I think the Chinese get offered better prices too.

I didn’t buy anything. I’m not much of a shopper and it is too early for me to be buying souveniers for friends and family. We did have coffee at Starbucks, well tea actually. I learned a few Chinese phrases. We decided to push on to Xi Dan station to eat lunch. Although it was supposedly a business district, it was actually more packed than the Silk Street Market. The crowd was noticably younger. 77th Street Market being the big draw. We checked it out after lunch at Ma La You Huo. The entire market seems geared towards teenagers or at least really young Chinese women. Apparently it is often featured in fashion magazines and sure enough their was a fashion show going on while we were there. This was a bit more interesting but still not a place I’m likely to buy something.

77th Street Market Entrance

We decided to go somewhere I could buy some computer speakers and a mouse. It took a while on a very crowded bus but we ended up at Ke Mao Dian Zi Cheng. This was a huge building bursting with computer stuff. It had floor after floor and booth after booth of computer parts and accessories. There were several more just like it in the immediate vicinity and employees were unsure even how many floors were open for shopping.

I didn’t bring very much cash and I was kinda beat and under the weather so we didn’t shop that long. I did look at many sets of computer speakers. I only started taking pictures of the displays about half way through. We easily looked at twice as many. Eventually I bought a set of aigo speakers. It is the usual two small satelite speakers with one larger subwoofer set up.

Fashion Show at 77th Street Mall

Tian Ming and I had discussions on just what is a famous brand. Apparently aigo is a famous Chinese brand, that is one of the reasons I bought it. The main reason is I could see and feel the drivers on all three speakers. Although I was tempted to buy some really exotic looking speakers I was just going to give them away in a few months so I didn’t want to spend too much. I got my speakers for 150 RMB. The initial asking price was 190 but Tian Ming was able to get them to lower it.

The mouse I actually bought before the speakers. There was no haggling involved. I simply bought the exact same mouse I already had, though in a different color. Now I can leave one at home and carry one with me in my bag.

Computer Speakers

I’ve actually bought four sets of computer speakers in under two years. It gets worse than that. I actually own a full set of Paradigm speakers which I had previously connected to my PowerMac as well as the rest of my home audio/theater equipment. I had dubbed the whole set up ‘The Deathstar’. I want to have it say “Witness the power of my fully functional Deathstar” in a really deep voice when it started up…

Now all that stuff is at my mom’s house, most of it is in boxes or sitting on shelves…

Now I can finally participate in two popular threads in the Macintoshian Achaia over at Arstechnica again.

More Computer Speakers

Yet more computer speakers

Even more computer speakers

The winning set of speakers

My powerbook and my new set of speakers


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