Maybe you’re setting out to see petroglyphs, or maybe you’ve come across them by accident. Either way, keep this information in mind.
If you’ve been lucky enough to get your hands on a PS5 or Xbox Series X – or you hope to get lucky soon – you’ll want a relatively modern gaming TV to get the most of the 4K HDR picture quality offered by these gaming behemoths. And if you don’t have thousands to drop on a top-tier OLED, fret not: budget panels are better than ever. Hisense in particular has made big strides in recent years, but is its H9G enough to make the most of the latest consoles? We tested one to find out.
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Hisense H9G – Design and Features
With thinner-than-ever bezels, it’s hard for most 4K TVs to stand out in terms of physical design. The H9G is as sleek as any other LED TV, with narrow silver edges around the screen and a unique triangular stand. I actually like this stand a lot – it carries the stability of two legs without requiring a table as wide as the TV itself. That’s more exciting than it might seem, as so many TVs today require a huge surface to place them on, particularly if you want an immersive 55- or 65-inch screen size.
The set itself isn’t exactly slim, but that’s to be expected given its full-array LED backlighting – which, combined with its ability to dim each of those 132 zones individually, allows it to darken certain areas of the screen for deeper black levels. Good contrast is the most important feature in picture quality, so I consider this a must-have if you’re buying a TV today – especially if you plan on watching HDR movies and playing HDR games. The H9G supports HDR10, HDR10+, and Dolby Vision.
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It also claims 1,000-nit peak brightness, which is great for getting that “pop” out of an HDR image – as is the wide color gamut, which uses a quantum dot layer to offer a larger range of colors for a more vibrant, lifelike image. Ultimately, these are the most important features when it comes to HDR picture quality, and despite its lower price tag – $700 for the 55-inch model, $950 for the 65-inch – the H9G hits the most important specs on paper for a lower price than many of its competitors.
That said, Hisense has to cut costs somewhere, and in the case of the H9G, you’ll be missing out on some of this generation’s latest and greatest gaming features. While the H9G has a 120Hz panel, this merely allows for motion interpolation in movies and will not accept a 120Hz signal from the PS5 or Xbox Series X for high-refresh gaming. (You can manually force 120Hz mode at 1080p, and the TV will display 120Hz in its little information window, but it will merely skip frames and output 60 frames per second – not 120.)
In addition, it doesn’t have any HDMI 2.1 ports, which means you won’t get variable refresh rate, which cuts down on screen tearing and stutter when a game can’t put out a consistent number of frames per second. Not everyone will necessarily care about these features, but given that other TVs offer them at similar prices, it is a bit of a bummer not to see it here. The TV can, however, automatically switch to Game Mode when it detects that you’re playing a game, which is a handy convenience.
Side-facing ports on the back left of the TV include three HDMI ports, two USB ports, a headphone jack, and a coax input for an antenna or cable connection. On the back, you also get an ethernet jack as well as optical audio out and composite video/audio in, along with a fourth HDMI port. These old-school ports are becoming less common on TVs, so it’s nice to see them here, particularly if you have some retro game consoles you want to hook up.
The H9G runs Android TV, meaning you get one of the more versatile smart TV platforms on the market (albeit a slightly outdated one, with Google TV having since replaced its old predecessor). Android TV not only offers a huge library of apps, but voice-activated Google Assistant as well – with a physical switch on the bottom of the TV to turn off the always-listening microphones. (The LED lights that shine with this switch activated are a bit annoying, though, particularly if you plan on using this in a bedroom.) The remote is mostly well-designed, albeit with some buttons that might confuse some (like a home button right next to the “Apps” button, each of which takes you to a different part of the Android TV interface). It could be better, but advanced users will probably appreciate the number of shortcut buttons available, once you learn your way around.
Finally, the H9G has on-board speakers that sound fine, but trust me: if you care enough about picture quality to be considering this TV, you probably want a good soundbar to match.
Hisense H9G – Testing
In order to verify Hisense’s picture quality claims, I ran the TV through a battery of tests using an X-Rite i1Display Pro and a copy of CalMAN Ultimate, as well as some by-eye tests with patterns from Lagom and Blur Busters. I used the most accurate “Theater” picture modes out of the box for testing, with no adjustments except Local Dimming, where noted.
SDR test patterns reached a peak brightness of 425 nits on a full-field white pattern, and local dimming will allow smaller portions of the screen to get even brighter than that – in other words, this is a great TV if you have a room with lots of sunlight and need to combat glare. Greyscale and color accuracy were very good on our test unit, with an average deltaE of 2.6 for greyscale and 1.4 for a 47-point colorchecker, and both had a maximum deltaE of only 4.5.
That’s pretty fantastic for a TV of this price, considering a deltaE value of 3 is considered “good” (and not easily distinguishable by the majority of people). Those values, however, are for local dimming turned off – as with any other TV, turning local dimming on causes greyscale and color accuracy to deviate a bit more, and there’s not much you can do to avoid that.
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HDR performance was similarly impressive – with local dimming turned on the default setting of High, the H9G reached a peak brightness of 1,283 nits on a 5% window, which is comfortably over the 1,000 nits advertised by Hisense – and I’d bet some highlights can peak even higher than that. Turning local dimming to Medium or Low didn’t affect this value much, as it can on some TVs – instead, they merely raise the black levels to minimize blooming.
While the H9G adhered closely to the EOTF curve with local dimming off, turning the feature on caused most shades to appear over-brightened – moreso than other LED TVs I’ve tested in the past. This may result in an image that appears a bit over-brightened in some scenes.
Black and grey uniformity can vary from set to set, so my experience may not carry over to your own – but for what it’s worth, our review unit had pretty good grey uniformity with very little noticeable banding (a common issue with TVs at this price). Black uniformity was less stellar, with some noticeable glow in the corners, but local dimming helps this somewhat.
Response time was mostly good, and the Lagom test resulted in very little flickering in most of the squares. The darkest transition, however, did flicker a bit, and I did notice in Blur Busters’ UFO test that the moving ships did have a long but faint trail behind them (more on this in a moment.) I was unable to get an input lag tester in time for this review to be published, but I noticed no issues with the H9G in Game Mode in my day-to-day gaming sessions.
Hisense H9G – Movies and Gaming
The H9G’s high-end specs made for an image that really pops in HDR movies and games. Bright highlights like Vader’s lightsaber in Rogue One jump right off the screen, and at 65 inches, his presence is more imposing than ever – particularly at the close viewing distance I’m stuck with in my small office. Similarly, colorful films like Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 look absolutely stunning thanks to the wide gamut.
Both of those films also have starry shots that are perfect stress tests for the local dimming algorithm. Set to the default of High, those starry scenes produce a fair amount of blooming around objects like planets or suns. In fact, when set to High, the H9G will turn the backlight off completely in some areas – this produces deep inky blacks, but produces more blooming and a sort of flickering side effect in some scenes (like the opening shot of Rogue One). Turning it down to Medium raises the black levels a tad, cutting down on blooming but making blacks look a bit more grey, and causing the glow in the corners of the screen to become more pronounced. It’s up to you which of those settings you prefer – I find a bias light helps mitigate the flaws of both approaches.
That high peak brightness was equally impressive in gaming. Driving across the English countryside in Forza Horizon 4 was jaw-dropping, particularly in moments when the bright afternoon sun would reflect off the rear window of my Corvette. The 4K detail was also clearly visible as I plowed through fields of wheat (okay, I’m not that good a driver.)
Motion was a more uneven experience, both in movies and gaming. While the response time on this TV is quite fast, especially in brighter scenes, dark scenes produce some noticeable artifacts. When playing Spider-Man: Miles Morales, for example, swinging through the city during the day is smooth and clear. But during cutscenes, dark parts of the image – like Miles’ black hair – visibly smear as they move across the screen. And in dimly lit areas, like the Roxxon lab, it’s far more distracting, producing noticeable red ghosting all over the scene whenever you move the camera. Most people tend not to notice these things, but if you’re picky about motion – you know who you are – it’s enough to be distracting, and potentially even a deal-breaker. I noticed similar issues in darker-toned movies as well, like the final scene of The Dark Knight.
Ultimately, these little flaws aren’t surprising at this price point. The H9G is a flagship TV, but from a budget-oriented brand, and you have to sacrifice somewhere, even if it isn’t something obvious on the spec sheet. And given the H9G’s HDR performance, this is still a very good TV for the price, with downsides most people will find minor or not notice at all.
However, other similarly-priced TVs might still offer better bang for your buck, depending on your preferences. 2020’s TCL 6-Series, for example, offers more dimming zones to combat blooming (thanks to the Mini-LED backlight), the Roku smart platform, and HDMI 2.1 gaming features like variable refresh rate – making it arguably a better choice for next-gen gamers. Still, if you prefer the Android TV platform or require maximum brightness for a well-lit room, the H9G might be for you.
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You’ve probably spotted the signs around your neighborhood: “We buy houses,” “Cash for homes,” or “Sell us your home as/is!” You may have even groaned at how pervasive they’ve become.
If so, you’re not alone. These signs, which come from real estate investment groups that scoop up houses across the country — often paying 10% or more below the market value — are becoming more and more common in today’s hot real estate market.
The goal? Flip each house into a more expensive property, or turn it into a rental unit.
Real estate investors are offering cash for homes in just about any neighborhood in any part of the U.S. these days, no matter the condition of the property, says Nick Bailey, chief customer officer at RE/MAX. In January 2021, median existing home prices jumped to $303,900 — 14.1% higher than last year, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). For investors, who strive to purchase homes below the market value and sell for the highest price possible, “are getting more attention … because it’s easier to buy and flip when prices are going up,” Bailey says.
With home prices rising, homeowners might be tempted to sell their homes quickly, especially if they’ve lost their jobs or are under financial strain from COVID-19. And since most homeowners don’t realize how much their homes are worth, or that a few repairs could up its value for a relatively low cost, an information gap is adding fuel to the fire, according to Eric Sussman, an adjunct real estate professor at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA).
Is selling your home to an investment group always a bad idea? Not necessarily, real estate experts say. But you need to proceed with caution.
How do “we buy houses” groups work?
Real estate investors usually buy homes sight unseen; often in various states of disrepair. That’s why they offer less than market value, says Jeremy Brandt, CEO of WeBuyHouses.com, which connects sellers with interested investors.
They base their offers on several factors, including the market value of a fully restored home in the neighborhood, the area’s comparable sales, the cost of repairing the home (including a buffer in case renovations are more than expected) and the expenses of holding the house until it’s re-sold.
If a homeowner accepts the offer, they use the money to pay off their mortgage (if they have one), and the rest comes to them in cash.
Selling a home with a traditional real estate agent isn’t so cut-and-dried: Added costs include an average commission of about 6%, and depending on the state, closing costs that can run from 2% to 5% of the purchase price. Sellers have to pay for repairs, too, and while the home is on the market, they’re stuck paying the mortgage and other expenses.
Is selling a home for cash a good deal?
In 2020, 89% of home sellers worked with a real estate agent to sell their property, according to NAR. For most homeowners, this route is the best way to fetch top dollar for their home — especially in today’s real estate market.
Simply put, there are fewer homes on the market right now, so competition is high and many sellers are raking in offers. In most cases, settling for a lower price from an investor just doesn’t make sense.
“If somebody has a house that’s in great condition, and was built in the last 10 years, a real estate investor is certainly not going to be a good fit for them,” Brandt says. “They’re going to get the most value for their money by selling through a real estate agent.”
What if you need to sell quickly?
Expediency and convenience are the main advantages of selling to a real estate investor. Standard closings can take 30 to 45 days, after all. With an investor, it might take a week.
Homeowners who opt to sell to investors are typically in foreclosure or have homes that need repairs they can’t afford. Another common scenario is someone who inherits a home in a state they don’t live in.
“When time is more important than your equity,” going through an investor may be the right choice, RE/MAX’s Bailey says.
Still, he adds, there are usually better alternatives.
Some cheap repairs, like a fresh coat or an upgraded backyard, can add thousands in additional equity. Even if that’s not an option, lots of buyers are scooping up homes that aren’t in tip-top shape in today’s market.
How to spot a scam
Unlike real estate agents, investors don’t have to be licensed, so almost anyone can enter the space and start making offers on homes.
“There’s a lot of seminar novice real estate investors jumping into the market because they see that it’s so hot, and they think they’re going to get rich quick,” Brandt from WeBuyHouses.com says. (His company only works with established contract investors, he adds).
There are plenty of straight-up bad actors, too. Attorneys general in states like New Jersey and Pennsylvania have issued alerts about scammers who back out of promises to pay off a seller’s mortgage after the deed is signed. Other nefarious investing groups threaten to back out of a sale last-minute unless a homeowner makes surprise repairs.
Homeowners need to do their homework if they plan to sell to an investor, UCLA’s Sussman says. Make sure they’re represented by a legitimate company: Check out their website, trace the phone number that’s listed on the sign and talk to local real estate agents to get their take.
“Information and education are power, as far as I’m concerned,” he says. “These buyers are obviously in the money-making business. As long as you’re OK with that and aware of their strategy, well, sell.”
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Searching for the best printers for your home? Selecting the best laser printer for you can be a bit complicated. There is a series of factors, costs, and features that you’ll want to take into account before making your purchase. To start, you’ll want to decide whether you need to print in color. Laser printers, while delivering blazing-fast printing speeds, do not handle the complex colors associated with photos well at all. Furthermore, color toner for laser printers is price-prohibitive.
If you’re buying a laser printer you’ll probably be paying a higher entry cost than if you were buying an inkjet, but you stand to make up that cost, because laser printers use ink more efficiently. If you’re looking at a laser printer you’re probably looking for something that can churn out hundreds of pages of black and white text as quickly as possible without costing you a fortune in cartridges. But will you need it for other things, like scanning, copying, and faxing? If so, you’ll want to look at a multifunction laser printer.
Another major consideration is connectivity. Most laser printers come with an ethernet connection, but many do not feature WiFi, so it’s something you should always check before making your final purchase. Keep reading for our definitive guide on selecting the best laser printer.
- Best monochrome laser printer: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/Brother-HL-L2300D-Monochrome-Printer-Printing/dp/B00NQ1CLTI?&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-laser-printer-pcr-20&linkId=b33519cf584c3e19714566e37dd9e1b0&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>Brother HL-L2300D Monochrome Laser Printer with Duplex Printing</a>
- Best wireless laser printer: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07HB6NPP4?%2F%3Ftag=popularscience-us-content-osp-20&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-laser-printer-pcr-20&linkId=5b95feb0729fe2e2ab85d57d892ed82d&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>HP Laserjet Pro Wireless Monochrome Laser Printer</a>
- Best all-in-one laser printer: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0844PNL78?&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-laser-printer-pcr-20&linkId=a235e775f00309626079283ecfb7f738&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>HP Neverstop All-in-One Laser Printer </a>
- Best 3D laser printer: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/Snapmaker-Modular-Engraving-Auto-Leveling-320x350x330mm/dp/B08PKG2Q2W?dchild=1&keywords=3d+laser+printer&qid=1614009287&sr=8-7&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-laser-printer-pcr-20&linkId=78af0fb797601b6c2fe8999cca5ce2e6&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>Snapmaker 2.0 Modular 3-in-1 3D Printer</a>
- Best commercial laser printer: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07N1DH6MC?&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-laser-printer-pcr-20&linkId=3e2585471152312ecf558b58b92b16c6&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>HP OfficeJet Pro 9025 All-in-One Wireless Printer</a>
- Best cheap laser printer: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/HP-LaserJet-Wireless-Printer-W2G51A/dp/B079QRKWLX?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=B079QRKWLX&pd_rd_r=21bc4e2c-8263-4091-aa98-46b626caa586&pd_rd_w=MmdOu&pd_rd_wg=VQuyf&pf_rd_p=16b28406-aa34-451d-8a2e-b3930ada000c&pf_rd_r=PJE3MX0KEWQGSKVYS49F&psc=1&refRID=PJE3MX0KEWQGSKVYS49F&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-laser-printer-pcr-20&linkId=9a20c580d58b01abc8d1a240f5b58ae6&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>HP LaserJet Pro M15w Wireless Laser Printer</a>
Features to consider when shopping for the best laser printer
To find the best laser printer for you, consider whether you need it for traditional printing, copying, and faxing duties as well. Do you need a color laser printer, or maybe a laser printer and scanner rolled into one? Consider your goals and how you will most often use your printer before purchasing.
Consider a black and white laser printer
Laser printers are not known for producing great printed, color images. They simply struggle to reproduce complex color, and on top of that color toner can be quite pricey.
If you’re looking for a printer because you plan on tackling paperwork at home or expect to be poring over manuscripts, there’s really no need to buy a color laser printer.
The truth is, if you’re looking at a laser printer, your priority almost certainly is printing a ton of text pages as quickly as possible. In that case, it probably makes more sense to be looking at a monochrome laser printer.
Best monochrome laser printer: Brother HL-L2300D Monochrome Laser Printer with Duplex Printing
If you’re looking for a monochrome printer to print documents in your home, this Brother laser printer has you covered. It prints 27 pages per minute at a recommended usage of up to 2,500 pages a month. This printer does not have WiFi capabilities—instead, it connects via USB.
Depending on your office layout, you may need a wireless laser printer
We all know home offices can be tiny; heck, even office offices can have considerable space restrictions. Few folks want to sit next to the printer as it churns out paper and people congregate anxiously waiting for their documents. So you probably don’t want to have your printer tethered physically to anyone’s computer.
While an ethernet connection may make for slightly faster printing, a decent network should only slow major print jobs slightly. So if you work in a cramped space, you’ll probably want to buy a wireless laser printer with a WiFi connection.
Best Wireless Laser Printer: HP Laserjet Pro Wireless Monochrome Laser Printer
Featuring both WiFi and an ethernet connection along with the option to print from your phone, this HP wireless laser printer keeps your options open. It handles 30 pages per minute and its paper tray holds 250 pages, so you’ll be able to tackle large jobs without hovering over it. Is set to automatically print to both sides of a page and has a power-saving feature that makes sure the printer is only on when you need it to be.
If you fax, copy, and scan you’ll want an all-in-one laser printer
Yes, we’re all living in a digital age—but whether you’re working from home or at a small office, odds are you’ll need a scanner, copier, and fax machine at one point or another. We’ve all found ourselves having to send in a contract at the last minute or needing to fax something to a government office.
An all-in-one laser printer delivers one great and affordable package of all these tools without sacrificing its functionality as a printer.
Best all-in-one laser printer: HP Neverstop All-in-One Laser Printer
The HP Neverstop gives you a scanner, a copier, and a 21-page-per-minute monochrome printer in one package. It comes with 5,000 pages worth of toner in the box and promises up to 7 times more printed pages per cartridge than other in-class printers. This all-in-one laser printer does not feature two-sided printing and connects exclusively through WiFi; it does not have an ethernet port.
Did you know you can use a 3D laser printer at home?:
Maybe you’re interested in making a bit more of an impression than the kind that ink leaves. Believe it or not, 3D laser printers are becoming much more common in the home every day. A good 3D printer will allow you to engrave, carve, and craft your designs into existence. It gives you the freedom to take sketches or designs from a variety of programs from AutoCad to PowerPoint and use common household materials like leather, wood, fabric, or even chocolate and turn them into a real, physical product.
Best 3D Laser Printer: Snapmaker 2.0 Modular 3-in-1 3D Printer
The Snapmaker 2.0 3D printer allows you to turn your ideas into reality through a slew of common design programs that are fed into the machine. Compatible with leather, plywood, acrylic, and more, it’ll enable you to take your craft to the next level. If, however, you’re looking for a printer that’s food-safe and works on chocolate, we recommend taking a look at the Glowforge.
Are you in the market for a commercial laser printer?
If you’re handling major printing jobs you may want to consider a commercial laser printer so you don’t burn through consumer-grade models in short order. Commercial models also come with enhanced scanning and copying features compatible with office software like QuickBooks and GoogleDrive. Plus, they bring an extra level of network security to protect your sensitive data from breaches.
Best commercial laser printer: HP OfficeJet Pro 9025 All-in-One Wireless Printer
Printing 24 pages per minute, with a 35-page automatic document feeder, this commercial laser printer has the kind of amenities that would make any office worker swoon. Fast and enhanced scanning allows you to organize and collate receipts and documents on your computer. Ethernet and WiFi connections will give you all the connectivity options you need—you can even print, copy, and scan remotely from your phone.
Best laser printer on a budget: What you can get for under $150
A budget printer can still deliver the thing you want the most: fast, high-quality, black-and-white printing. A lower entry fee likely means connectivity options will be limited. You won’t see both ethernet and WiFi on a budget model and you can kiss copying and scanning goodbye. It will also probably hold less paper and toner than the more expensive models. But if you’re willing to forgo those features, here is the best laser printer we’ve found on a budget.
Best cheap laser printer: HP LaserJet Pro M15w Wireless Laser Printer
At a little over 6 inches tall and about 14 inches wide, this HP laser printer won’t hoard space, but it still delivers fast, high-quality prints. Expect it to spit out 19 pages per minute, with the first page out in about eight seconds. This one only prints wirelessly.
FAQ: best laser printer
Is a laser printer better than an inkjet?
Inkjet printers are superior when it comes to printing pictures and graphs with complex color palettes. Laser printers have an advantage in cost-effectiveness when it comes to printing large amounts of text-only documents. If you’re looking for versatility, an inkjet is probably the way to go.
How long do laser printers last?
Laser printers are generally supposed to last five years, but they can last for over a decade, depending on how much use they get. Printers used relentlessly wear out faster. However, manufacturers note that laser-printer cartridges last about two years. This isn’t a strict rule, but it’s something to watch for.
Which are better, HP or Brother laser printers?
In general, Brother laser printers offer better value for the money when it comes to toner. You can simply print more with less toner with a Brother. However, that savings comes at a cost of a more difficult toner and drum replacement process. HPs tout faster standby-to-print speeds and have lower power-saving settings. Generally, consumers report Brothers to be more reliable throughout their lifetimes.
A final word on shopping for the best laser printer
Finding the best laser printer for you depends on what you plan to do with it. Will you be using it to print a letter or two occasionally, or are you going to be pumping out manuscripts? Do you need flexibility when it comes to where you operate the device, or are you OK with having it tethered to your computer? Laser printers are a great choice for an office that is doing a ton of black-and-white printing because they print sharp text and can save quite a bit of money when it comes to toner costs. Find the best printers for your home with Pop Sci!
You’ve heard the buzz for Attack of the Murder Hornets, now watch a horrifying scene. This time, it’s personal.
To stay warm throughout the winter, you need to make sure you cover all your extremities: head, neck, fingers, and toes. Whether you’re about to trudge through 18 inches of fresh snowfall or there is a bone-chilling wind rolling through, signaling flurries ahead, it’s a good idea to protect your toes with a pair of great snow boots. These winter wonder-accessories come in all shapes and sizes, which is why it’s so important to find the right pair for your feet. The best snow boots are well-insulated with a waterproof exterior and minimal room for droplets to sneak in and soak your socks. Plus, they should match your personal style, the perfect combination of form and function. Don’t let a little snow stop you from enjoying time outside or, worse, numb your toes before you get to work in the morning. With that in mind, we’ve put together this little guide to get you started on the journey towards comfortable, cozy snow boots.
- Best insulated snow boots: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/Sorel-Mens-Caribou-NM1000-Boot/dp/B07KJZJL8W?dchild=1&keywords=sorel%2Bcaribou&qid=1612294056&sr=8-1&th=1&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-snow-boots-pcr-20&linkId=2ca7feae110343a07e8923b2df6195fd&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>Sorel Caribou Boot</a>
- Best waterproof boots: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/Muck-Arctic-Extreme-Conditions-Mid-Height/dp/B00TT36CUQ?dchild=1&keywords=Muck+Boot+Women%27s+Arctic+Sport+Ii&qid=1612379420&s=apparel&sr=1-4&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-snow-boots-pcr-20&linkId=10a4f2e4883d26b223a398d21dfeb816&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>Muck Boot Arctic Sport II</a>
- Best kid’s boots: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/BOGS-Kids-Neo-Classic-Dye-Blue-Little/dp/B0891633TW?dchild=1&keywords=BOGS%2BKids%27%2BNeo%2BClassic%2BWaterproof%2BRubber%2BRain%2BBoot%2BShoe&qid=1612414006&s=apparel&sr=1-13&th=1&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-snow-boots-pcr-20&linkId=d1c97815a7cac409c4d341946172d8b1&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>Bogs Neo-Classic Boot</a>
- Best winter hiking boots: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/Salomon-Winter-Waterproof-Phantom-Monument/dp/B078SVKZ72?dchild=1&keywords=Salomon%2BX%2BUltra%2BCS&qid=1612463305&sr=8-1&th=1&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-snow-boots-pcr-20&linkId=021c4662a00ec5ebf41e85f5f2574521&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>Salomon X Ultra Winter CS WP II</a>
- Best stylish snow boots: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/VOILE-BLANCHE-Womens-Shearling-Medium/dp/B08SFH4459?dchild=1&keywords=voile+blanche&qid=1612467537&sr=8-4&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-snow-boots-pcr-20&linkId=9893f0844936fe5fb824a1deaa586f2b&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>Voile Blanche Eva Shearling Hiker Boots</a>
- Best men’s budget snow boots: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/Kamik-Mens-Hunter-Snow-Black/dp/B07N1JWP2L?dchild=1&keywords=kamik%2Bsnow%2Bboots&qid=1612469733&s=apparel&sr=1-1&th=1&psc=1&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-snow-boots-pcr-20&linkId=3bdd331638b4e9c06b83a378efb83d89&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>Kamik Men’s Forester Snow Boot</a>
- Best women’s budget snow boots: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/Kamik-Womens-MOMENTUMLO-White-Medium/dp/B077ZGSCC6?crid=1QJD4QGT18IHL&dchild=1&keywords=kamik%2Bwomens%2Bsnow%2Bboots&qid=1612469610&s=apparel&sprefix=kamik%2Bwomen%2Cfashion%2C172&sr=1-5&th=1&psc=1&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-snow-boots-pcr-20&linkId=06e5c7af19af009aa75796e72f04af66&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>Kamik Momentumlo Snow Boot</a>
Features to consider when shopping for snow boots
The first things you need to think about before buying a new pair of snow boots are environment and activity. Do you live somewhere with occasional snow but frigid low temperatures? Are you guaranteed to be strolling through super wet snow or rain? Are these boots for everyday use, or do you want something rugged for a winter hike?
Are you preparing for super low temperatures?
There are a few features every reliable pair of snow boots needs to have to keep your feet from freezing and your soles from sliding around.
First things first, if you’re expecting the thermostat to drop dramatically in the wintertime, regardless of snowfall amount, you want to find a boot that has extra insulation with a tall shaft and the ability to lace entirely over the ankle, keeping out the snow and cold. Good socks can go a long way, but if you really want to keep things nice and toasty, look for a boot lined with fur, wool, or other textiles. The added layer locks in heat, promoting circulation in below-freezing temperatures. This is particularly important if you spend a lot of time outside for work or play. Most boots nowadays use a synthetic liner like Primaloft as an extra layer. The amount of fill is recorded in grams; a 200 to 400-gram fill is good for mid-length bursts outdoors, while heavy-duty snow boots will have more.
Sheepskin, felt, and wool are also popular. Though these materials tend to be a bit thicker, they are naturally designed to insulate. Unlike synthetic options though, natural fibers can’t handle getting wet and often need a protective spray to keep them from being ruined by moisture.
Best insulated boots: Sorel Caribou Boots
The Caribou Boots from Sorel are staples in protective winter gear. The boot is made in men’s and women’s sizes with a 9-millimeter removable felt lining and a rise of roughly 10.75 inches from the arch. These boots will keep you warm for hours at a time, but they can start to feel a bit heavy. That means they’re great for casual, everyday use, but you might need to try something else for activities like hiking or manual labor.
Will you be walking through a lot of wet snow?
While all snow boots should be waterproof to a certain degree, it can be tricky to keep certain materials from getting soggy, especially if the snow tends to be wet or if the weather turns to rain. Weather resistance and waterproofing typically come down to material and construction. Insulated rubber boots are our go-tos when it comes to keeping our feet nice and dry. Rubber soles with excellent treads keep you from slipping, and an extended rubber outer layer wicks away water. (There’s a reason why the classic rain boot is essentially just a rubber shell!) An insulated lining is key for adding warmth.
It’s also a good idea to examine the boot’s tongue. Try to find a model with the tongue seamed to the boot; if there’s a gap, water droplets can still sneak in.
Next, you’ll need to pay attention to the height. A short bootie might not do much for you if the snow is over your ankles. Look for a mid to high-length shaft in waterproof boots.
Best Waterproof Boots: Muck Boot Arctic Sport II
The Arctic Sport II is top of the line when it comes to waterproof, weather-resistant snow boots. Available in men’s and women’s styles, this shoe was inspired by a traditional farming boot with many upgrades. It has a rubber exterior, 5-millimeter thick neoprene booties, and an internal fleece lining for warmth. You can get the boot in two lengths, high or mid, to protect from heavy snowfall, plus they are pull-on, so you won’t have to worry about any tiny gaps from tongues and laces that could let in moisture.
Will you be walking with a little one?
If you plan on walking around your local winter wonderland with a toddler, you’ll need to get them a durable pair of snow boots. Some older children can look at smaller-sized adult boots or at least follow the same principles; toddler’s shoes need to be a little simpler. Kids’ snow boots can and probably should skip tie-up laces, especially if your little one can’t tie their own shoes just yet. You don’t want to be constantly ripping off your gloves and exposing your fingers just to secure your child’s shoes. Luckily, there are plenty of great pull-on options for winter fun without pause.
You should also pay attention to the treads found on the bottom of the shoe, also known as lugs. While lugs are also super important when it comes to adult shoes, toddlers tend to have a hard time walking as it is. Heavy, clunky boots can sometimes emphasize the “toddle” aspect of traversing the streets. Look for a lightweight boot with a good, rubbery grip and deep treads to keep your tiny tot standing upright in the snow.
Finally, you might need to experiment a bit with the fit. Many parents recommend sizing up in snow boots; that way, your kid can easily slide their feet inside even while wearing super thick socks. The warmer, the better.
Best kid’s boots: Bogs Neo-Classic Boot
These uni-sex kids boots from Bogs are a great option for kids. They come in a ton of fun designs, slip on easily, and combine rubber with neoprene for maximum water resistance. With excellent traction, these boots will hold up easily in slushy weather. They come in three separate sizing categories: toddler, little kid (4 to 8 years old), and big kid (8 to 12 years old). Plus, they come in tons of fun patterns like rockets, butterflies, and smiling kitty cats.
Are you looking for a winter hiking boot?
If you plan to do a lot of hiking or winter camping and there isn’t enough fresh powder to warrant the use of snowshoes, look for a boot designed with long trails in mind. While this may seem straightforward, find a boot that literally states its hiking performance, either in the name or description. If a shoe is designed for hiking, it will automatically be more lightweight than casual snow boot contemporaries. Designated hiking boots will also have better traction with thick, bouncy soles to support your feet over rugged terrain and tread patterns designed to prevent snow build-up in their crevices.
You’ll most likely want to pick a boot with a lower rise, hitting at or just above the ankle; this is especially true for hikers embarking on steep ascents. Winter boots that come up around the calves can limit movement and flexibility, leading to additional strain and lack of agility. If you’re worried about snow getting into the shoe, you can invest in additional gaiters or waterproof hiking pants that tuck into your boots, creating a seal.
Once you’ve found a few hiking boot contenders, think about your priorities regarding insulation and climate. If you plan to be on the go throughout the entire hike, stopping only for brief rests, you may be able to relax on the insulation and opt for something more breathable. This is particularly true if you’ll be in temperatures that don’t usually dip below freezing. If you’ll be going on longer treks with an increase in stops, or hiking somewhere truly frigid, then there’s no harm in sticking with an insulated liner. Just know, these liners can add some weight to your step.
Best Winter Hiking Boots: Salomon X Ultra Winter CS WP II
These winter hiking boots from Salomon is a great companion on challenging trails. With a lightweight, 200-gram Thinsulate lining, a moderate 7-inch shaft height, and an advanced grip, this boot is an excellent option for frequent hikers. It has an athletic feel with a buoyant rubber heel and water-wicking full-grain leather. Some report a narrow fit, so if you tend to wear thick socks while hiking, consider going up a half size. Available in men’s and women’s models.
Do you want to keep warm but remain stylish?
Let’s be honest, winter snow boots aren’t always the most aesthetically pleasing shoe on the market. By necessity, they are bulkier than most other shoes and made from materials that we wouldn’t call “sleek.” While it can certainly seem like there aren’t any options for those with a strong inclination towards fashion and creativity, don’t give up! There are several options out there; just make sure you don’t completely sacrifice function for form.
One thing you don’t want to compromise on when selecting a stylish snow boot is traction. No matter how short a walk you have, when there is snow on the ground, you want to minimize your chances of slipping and sliding. Thick rubber soles with deep grooves are generally a good sign, and no, we’re not talking about your Doc Martens. The good news is these soles don’t have to be an eyesore; you can even find a durable sole with great grip on a heeled boot if you’re really adventurous.
Aside from traction, the rest is up to you! Of course, insulation and waterproofing are essential to be a good snow boot; however, you can be a little more flexible, especially if you’re looking for something to supplement your boot collection. If you only need a boot for a short time, like brief walks from the subway to the office or grocery shopping, then you can opt for any insulation you like. If you live in a place with light snowfall that just gets a little slippery, maybe you don’t need entirely waterproof material. Keep in mind that many shoes can be treated with a waterproof spray, like Scotchguard, to create a protective layer between outside moisture and the shoes’ fabric. It’s a good idea to look up the material you plan to treat before purchasing to ensure you won’t damage the shoes’ outer shell.
Best stylish winter boot: Voile Blanche Eva Shearling Hiker Boots
While style is certainly in the eye of the beholder, we think these women’s snow boots from Voile Blanche are pretty chic. They have a platform rubber sole and sheepskin leather exterior with a dyed shearling lining to keep you looking put-together on a snowy sidewalk. There are many options when it comes to stylish winter boots for women, but these are at the top of the list.
Best snow boots on a budget: What you can get for under $75
You don’t need to break the bank just to find a sturdy pair of winter snow boots. Granted, you might miss out on the premium materials, longevity, and overall durability found in high-end boots, but that doesn’t mean you’ll be stuck with wet feet inside a flimsy shoe. As long as you look at the specs for the three most essential features in the best snow boots—insulation, traction, and water resistance—you’ll be safe and sound for at least one winter season, if not many more.
Best budget snow boot: Kamik Men’s Forester Snow Boot
Kamik makes some of the best snow boots around, at a great price. These men’s snow boots have a mid-calf shaft, are made from 95% rubber, and have a temperature rating suitable for temps as well -40 degrees Fahrenheit. They have an adjustable nylon collar to keep snow out and a waterproof exterior to wick away moisture. Though Kamik doesn’t have a counterpart in women’s sizes, check out the Kamik Momentumlo Snow Boot for a similar price point and durability.
People also ask about snow boots
Aren’t all snow boots waterproof?
We, of course, would like to think that any boots which boast their success in the snow are going to be waterproof. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. Boots like classic Uggs or ones with a poorly constructed tongue not directly attached to the shoe’s sides are prone to leaks and water seepage. Make sure you understand what material you’re purchasing and the shoe’s overall design before stepping out into the snow.
Can snow boots be washed?
Generally speaking, it’s never a good idea to throw your snow boots in the washing machine. However, if they come with removable liners, you should be able to soak those in a tub of warm water with detergent. Some may even be designed to go in the wash; just make sure you follow the instructions. If possible, place the remaining snow boot shell in front of a fire or other heating apparatus to combat any odors.
When should I buy snow boots?
There is never really a wrong time to buy a pair of snow boots. Of course, the newest models will hit the market in the fall to prepare for winter, but if you’re looking to score a deal, do your research and see what’s out there during summer sales. It’s always a good idea to try the boot on with a thick sock, especially if you won’t be able to return them after purchasing.
A final word on shopping for the best snow boots
Snow boots should be a staple in everyone’s winter wardrobe. They’ll keep you warm, dry, and upright no matter how much fresh powder is on the ground. Consider your environment and activity level to find the best snow boots for your needs, and get ready to enjoy all the winter season has to offer.
“Buffalo, you’ve been so kind to us,” Todd Rundgren said toward the end of his tour-opening show Sunday night. He was actually performing in Chicago, as most fans watching the pay-per-view livestream knew, but this was not a senior/Spinal Tap “Hello Cleveland!” moment. The current Rock & Roll Hall of Fame nominee’s entire 25-date “tour” […]
You’ve seen it before: If a show includes a shot of a texting app, it looks like characters who are intimate have somehow never texted each other before.
Picture-in-picture (PiP) lets you keep an eye on videos while you’re doing something else in another app—and it’s available on more devices than you might think. From smartphones to laptops, you can carry on watching in one app while you load up a different one.
It’s a neat trick to have at your disposal, even if it risks fragmenting your attention. You may find it useful for keeping an eye on a sports report or a news program while you’re busy with something else, or running a video call alongside another app.
Using PiP on Android, iOS, and iPadOS
Android, iOS, and iPadOS support picture-in-picture, but not every app does. For the feature to work, you need to be running a video app that offers built-in PiP capabilities. Most video apps do, including Disney Plus, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Apple TV. The YouTube app for these smartphone operating systems also supports PiP, but only for YouTube Premium subscribers.
Using PiP on Android, iOS, or iPadOS is as simple as starting to watch something, then switching back to the home screen with a swipe up from the bottom of the screen. On Apple’s platforms, there’s an alternative: Tap the picture-in-picture button, which looks like two squares with an arrow inside one of them. When you leave the app, playback will continue in a small window on screen, though the behavior differs slightly depending on the phone you’re using.
On Android devices, for example, tap on the video window to expand or shrink it, and tap and hold to reposition it on screen. Tapping on the window will also bring up the maximize and close buttons if you want to exit PiP mode (and go back to the app or leave it, respectively). Pause and playback controls will also show briefly when you tap on a video.
To control which apps make use of PiP, open Settings and pick Apps and notifications, Advanced, Special app access, and Picture-in-picture. The next screen will show you all the apps that support PiP mode and let you disable it on an app-by-app basis if you don’t want to use it.
Picture-in-picture is similar on iOS and iPadOS, but you can pinch and drag with two fingers to change the size of the PiP video thumbnail. Tap, hold, and drag on the video window to move it to a new position on screen, and tap briefly on the window to bring up the play and pause controls. When you tap on the PiP overlay, you’ll also see buttons for quitting the app completely (top left) or going back to the video app (top right).
Should you want to turn this picture-in-picture behavior off on an iPhone or iPad, you can do so from Settings: Tap General, then Picture in Picture, and turn the toggle switch off. When the switch is off, leaving an app where something is playing will simply stop playback and quit the app.
Using PiP on Windows and macOS
Both Windows and macOS are windowed operating systems, so they’re meant to keep multiple applications on screen at the same time—and that includes video playback apps. Click and drag the edges of windows to resize them, and click and drag the top of a window to move it around on screen.
To make it a little easier to keep videos in view, many media applications let you pin them to the top of the stack of windows you’ve got on screen, so other programs are always behind what you’re trying to watch. If this option is available in the apps you’re using, it should be displayed fairly prominently somewhere in the interface.
If you’re using the QuickTime Player or the Apple TV app on macOS for example, click the little PiP button (two rectangles and an arrow, bottom right) on the playback window to pin it on top of other programs. You can click and drag the edges of the window to resize it, and click and drag on the main part of the video overlay to move it to a different corner of the screen.
Over on Windows, applications take a more ad hoc approach to picture-in-picture. The default Films & TV player, for instance, has what it calls a “mini view” which is essentially PiP: You’ll find the mini view button down in the lower right corner underneath the progress bar while a video is playing. With the popular VLC Player, meanwhile, you can choose View, then Always on top to keep the video on top of other windows.
You’ll no doubt be playing a lot of media through your browser, and the main browsers offer their own PiP modes too. If you’re watching something on YouTube, for example, right-click on the video to bring up the YouTube menu, then right-click again in a different spot to find the browser menu and the Picture in picture (or similar) option, which pops out a separate window that stays on top of other programs.
It’s a handy feature to have, and it works in Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, and Apple’s Safari—though YouTube is the only video site we’ve come across that supports PiP. Once the pop-out window appears, you can drag it around and resize it as you would any other window, and playback will continue until you close the browser tab you launched it from.
Using PiP on other devices
There aren’t many media streaming devices that support picture-in-picture natively, but the Apple TV is one of them. If you tap the touch area on the Siri remote to bring up the playback controls while watching something, you’ll see the same PiP button you’d see on any PiP-supporting app across all of Apple’s operating systems. Select the option and the playback window will shrink to a corner of the screen. You can then tap the home button on the remote (the TV icon) to move or close the PiP window.
Anything you beam to your Apple TV via AirPlay can be played in a smaller PiP window too. Once you’ve started streaming your video from a connected iPhone, iPad, or macOS computer, just go to the same on-screen menus to find and enable the picture-in-picture option.
If you’re not using an Apple TV, you might be able to find some PiP options on your actual TV set, though these options aren’t widespread and might be called something else (like split screen). Dig into the instructions that came with your set or look them up online to see if this is an option on the model you have.
If you’re looking for a PS4 or PS5 deal, you’ve come to the right place. Right now, you can save lots of money on PS4 games and accessories, and even some PS5 games as well. Read on for all the best PlayStation deals available right now at a variety of retailers. And if you don’t find what you want you can always come back later, because we’re constantly updating this page with all the best PS4 and PS5 deals.
Best PS4 and PS5 Game Deals
A game console is only as good as its games. Thankfully, you don’t have to look far to find discounts on PS4 (and even PS5) games these days. Here’s a selection of all the best PlayStation game deals available now at a variety of retailers.
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Best Buy Deals
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PlayStation Store Deals
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At this point in the PS4’s life cycle, you can get the vast majority of the biggest games on the platform for well south of $59.99. For starters, there’s the PlayStation Hits line of games that offers a wide variety of fantastic games for $19.99, including behemoths like Horizon Zero Dawn Complete Edition, God of War, Uncharted: Lost Legacy, Bloodborne, and on and on.
But in addition to that, retailers like Best Buy, Amazon, PlayStation Store, and GameStop offer weekly sales in which you’ll find a revolving array of titles discounted for a limited time. We always keep the above list of deals up to date to make sure you can find the best games on sale at any given time. If you don’t see something you like today, check back later in the week.
Best PlayStation Plus Deals
If you didn’t know it already, scoring a deal on PS Plus is easy. Just hit up Daily Steals and enter promo code IGNPSN at checkout to get a year’s subscription for $34.99. That’s a big discount off the typical price of $59.99 per year. [poilib element=”commerceDeal” parameters=”slug=daily-steals-subscription-deals”] [poilib element=”commerceDeal” parameters=”slug=amazon-playstation-subscription-deals”] [poilib element=”commerceDeal” parameters=”slug=playstation-store-subscription-deals”] [poilib element=”commerceDeal” parameters=”slug=best-buy-playstation-subscription-deals”] [poilib element=”commerceDeal” parameters=”slug=gamestop-playstation-subscription-deals”] [poilib element=”commerceDeal” parameters=”slug=walmart-playstation-subscription-deals”]
For my money, PS Plus is one of the best deals in all of gaming. Not only does it let you play your games online and store your saves in the cloud, but it also gets you access to free games each month. They’re yours to keep and play for as long as you’re a PlayStation Plus member. PS Plus members also get extra discounts during some of the regular sales on the PlayStation Store throughout the year. Finally, PS5 owners also get access to the PlayStation Plus Collection, a treasure trove of games that include of some of the best games of the PS4 generation. If you play PlayStation regularly, a PS Plus membership pays for itself in basically no time.
Best PlayStation Accessory Deals
A new PlayStation 4 or PlayStation 5 generally only comes with just the console and a controller. To get the most out of your hardware, you’ll want to consider picking up a few accessories. But as with the consoles themselves, most PS4 and PS5 accessories are not on sale right now. Even so, when we find worthy deals, here’s where we’ll put them. [poilib element=”commerceDeal” parameters=”slug=amazon-playstation-accessories-deals”] [poilib element=”commerceDeal” parameters=”slug=best-buy-playstation-accessories-deals”] [poilib element=”commerceDeal” parameters=”slug=gamestop-playstation-accessories-deals”] [poilib element=”commerceDeal” parameters=”slug=walmart-playstation-accessories-deals”] [poilib element=”commerceDeal” parameters=”slug=playstation-store-accessories-deals”]
Some of the most useful accessories include extra DualShock 4 or DualSense controllers, PlayStation VR, and wireless headsets. The media remotes also have a special place in my heart, because controlling Netflix with a controller is a sub-par experience IMO. Even if you can’t score a deal, you may want to pick up a headset or extra controller at list price. Chances are, you’ll get your money’s worth out of them.
Best Storage Deals
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If you own more than a small handful of games, you probably know that the PS4 and PS5’s onboard storage can run out fast. That’s especially true with massive space hogging titles like Red Dead Redemption 2 and Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War taking up absurdly large chunks of hard drive space. And if you’re a PS Plus member who regularly downloads the free monthly games, you’ll be out of space before you know it. No one likes juggling games on their hard drive, especially considering how slow the PSN can be.
Thankfully, it’s incredibly easy to expand the onboard storage. Just plug in one of the discounted external hard drives above, format it in the settings menu, and you’ll be able to keep more games at the ready. Note that you can’t store PS5 games on an external hard drive. You can, however, play backwards-compatible PS4 games (which is to say, almost all PS4 games) from an external storage device.
PS4 Console Deals
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For several years there, PS4 console deals were relatively easy to come by. Not so lately, thanks to both the pandemic and the release of PS5. While you may be able to find a new PS4 Slim or PS4 Pro at MSRP, we’re not seeing many actual discounts at the moment. If that changes in the future, we’ll drop them here.
And in fact, you’ll often see (possibly shady) third-party retailers selling the consoles for above the suggested retail prices on sites like Amazon, Walmart, and eBay. So unless you really need a PS4, try to get them at MSRP or below. For reference, here are the standard retail prices for PS4 and PS5 models sold without pack-in games.
- PS4 Slim – $299.99
- PS4 Pro – $399.99
- PS5 Digital Edition – $399.99
- PS5 – $499.99
Speaking of PS5s, don’t expect to find any discounts on PlayStation 5 hardware anytime soon. You’re lucky if you can find it in stock anywhere for more than two minutes at a time. Once Sony can drive up the supply to meet the demand, you might start to see discounts. I wouldn’t hold my breath for that to happen anytime soon.
Chris Reed is IGN’s shopping and commerce editor. You can follow him on Twitter @_chrislreed.
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