These days there are so many brands to choose from, and so many makes and models of everything. The old rules are sort of redundant. You can get no name chinese brands that are superb value for the money, and likewise expensive over-hyped products that do not deliver. Really the best guide you have is to read the reviews that others have given for any particular product. If it’s an inexpensive item that you wish to purchase, and you know that you are only going to use it a few times a year ..for example an electric drill..I personlly wouldn’t bother reading reviews..i would just buy a cheapy. On the other hand if it were a tv, stereo or other big ticket item i would do my homework online.