If you don't already have one, a surround sound system's probably at the top of your "desperately want" list -- but the equipment's expensive, and paying to install it in an apartment you'll ditch in six months is as senseless as getting hooked on Ted Danson's new sitcom. For all the bang without the bucks or wiring, check out Yamaha's YSP-800
A little bigger than a rolled up Sunday Times, this self-contained unit holds a pair of woofers, 21 micro-drivers, and two amps -- basically, all the gadgetry you need to rock Judge Dredd theater-style without wall-mounting speakers or purchasing a receiver. Set up's easy: plug the YSP right into your TV/cable box/DVD player. The unit then sends out Red October-style test pings to calibrate the size and shape of its surroundings. In just three minutes, the YSP determines which wall to bounce each channel's audio off of to achieve 5.1 sound so exceptional that friends will assume a tool-belted geek spent a month in your pad setting it up -- and making full and terrifying use of your toilet.
This second generation YSP's listed at $900 (though you can get it for considerably less) and does the job of thousands of dollars worth of equipment and installation. So grab one, and start saving for that 2nd item on your list: breast implants.