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Buying new computers - need geek help

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Postby bronxxbomber » Mon Mar 06, 2006 2:57 pm

Phatferd wrote:My mom works for Gateway...

I was thinking of building my own PC the next time I needed to upgrade it. I hear its simple and I know more about computers than the Average Joe. I consider myself an intermediate computer dude...

What scares me about builing my own is all of the "little" things you have to buy that just increase the cost. Including the operating system...
Trust me. You get charged by every big company for throwing in Microsoft Windows. You often have no say in whether or not you want it and get charged for it anyway. Windows alones add about $75-$100 of the total cost :-t . Besides all the other little things you might add [ram, additional hard drives, fans, etc] increase the performance of the pc.
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Postby Phatferd » Mon Mar 06, 2006 3:01 pm

bronxxbomber wrote:
Phatferd wrote:My mom works for Gateway...

I was thinking of building my own PC the next time I needed to upgrade it. I hear its simple and I know more about computers than the Average Joe. I consider myself an intermediate computer dude...

What scares me about builing my own is all of the "little" things you have to buy that just increase the cost. Including the operating system...
Trust me. You get charged by every big company for throwing in Microsoft Windows. You often have no say in whether or not you want it and get charged for it anyway. Windows alones add about $75-$100 of the total cost :-t . Besides all the other little things you might add [ram, additional hard drives, fans, etc] increase the performance of the pc.


What? I understand what you're saying about the cost of Windows, but I don't get your point about hte additional things.

Please provide me a list of things showing the cost of EVERYTHING you need for a GOOD computer, geared towards an intermediate gamer. I want to be wrong because I want to feel like what I am doing is saving me money (I am going to build my own PC). I just don't think its the case based on all of the crap I have looked into in regards to starting out the process of building my own.
You have no frame of reference, Donny. You're like a child who walks into the middle of a movie...
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Postby Coppermine » Mon Mar 06, 2006 3:02 pm

Phatferd wrote:
acsguitar wrote:Using Newegg is the way to go..I've built probably 10 computers via newegg...

its the way to go...as for buying software...well...yea I don't have issues with that


All of the prices I use are using Newegg, I just don't see the point of building your own computer when the price of pre-built computers are soooo cheap right now. Even if you do some basic upgrades to imrove the pre-built computers you're still ahead.

I think building your own computer used to be cheaper, however, it's not really the case anymore with the computer market where it is now.

I think that building your own computer is one of the best things you can do because it teaches you how things work and you will be able to fix most of your own problems and it just feels good knowing you built something.

Another thing to consider with building your own PC is that you won't have technical support or anything when something goes wrong. You can't just bring your computer into circuit city, best buy, frys, etc...


Those are all good points. Like I said, going prebuilt is probably going to be cheaper now and support is nice thing when things go wrong. Bear in mind, replacement parts for prebuilt computers though are usually much more through the company that built it than through newegg. Case in point, my memory upgrade.

Again, I will put in a good word for Dell. I support an office of about 200 users with Dell PC's and problems are few and far between. Being with a large corporation, we also Dell Gold support which means that all hardware is replaced immediately and for free (minus the Gold support cost which I assume is super expensive). Just today I replaced a motherboard. It also helps that I'm both Dell and A+ certified ;-D

Even with my certifications and ability to build PC's with ease, I bought my personal computer through Dell because it was simply cheapter. Dell now offers AMD processors too I believe. As far as problem companies, I've heard far more complaints about Gateway and HP/Compaq. I would have loved to get a Sony or Toshiba (I bought prebuilt because I wanted a notebook pc) but they were just a little too pricey. You practically pay an extra $500 just to have the name VAIO on the front of your computer.
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Postby Phatferd » Mon Mar 06, 2006 3:06 pm

Actually according to PC Mag or PC World (One of those things) eMachines has the highest customer satisifaction and they are owned by Gateway. Compaq is the absolute worse.

This is my issue with Dell. Their parts seem to be total crap. When I say this it's hard for me to explain because when everything is compared they probably have better parts, but they seem to break all the damn time. I think they do a piss poor job of assembling and manufactoring their hardware. It's decent hardware, just assembled crappy.
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Postby acsguitar » Mon Mar 06, 2006 3:13 pm

Phatferd wrote:
acsguitar wrote:Using Newegg is the way to go..I've built probably 10 computers via newegg...

its the way to go...as for buying software...well...yea I don't have issues with that


All of the prices I use are using Newegg, I just don't see the point of building your own computer when the price of pre-built computers are soooo cheap right now. Even if you do some basic upgrades to imrove the pre-built computers you're still ahead.

I think building your own computer used to be cheaper, however, it's not really the case anymore with the computer market where it is now.

I think that building your own computer is one of the best things you can do because it teaches you how things work and you will be able to fix most of your own problems and it just feels good knowing you built something.

Another thing to consider with building your own PC is that you won't have technical support or anything when something goes wrong. You can't just bring your computer into circuit city, best buy, frys, etc...


Well here is my point about building your own computer.


A: You get what you need no added junk
B: You get better parts!!! They don't break as easily.
C: You allow people like my, tech support, to have some peace of mind by actually learning about the tool you are using.


Ok now you've made me spec out a computer see what you have done!! Now these are straight off of neweggs sites. Just doing it quick. Could be done cheaper or more expensive

OS: Windows (find a copy not hard)
CPU: AMD X2 4200 $357
HDD: 400GB Western Digital Drive $180
Motherboard: Gigabyte 939 Socket board $61
RAM: 2 GB Patriot memory $152
Video Card: EVGA 7800gt 256mb $300
DVD/CD Burner: $40
Case and Powersupply: $50 500 wat powersupply and cheap case.

Ok so that PC is $1,140

its a bit overkill as well. Probably don't need a 400 gb drive, a 7800gt, or 2 gigs of top of the line ram.

You could probably drop 300 bucks off of this system and still have a slamming system.

Truthfully you could drop almost 200 bucks off of that processor and still have a sweet computer.


Anyways yea thats my bit of info
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Postby Coppermine » Mon Mar 06, 2006 3:15 pm

Phatferd wrote:Actually according to PC Mag or PC World (One of those things) eMachines has the highest customer satisifaction and they are owned by Gateway. Compaq is the absolute worse.

This is my issue with Dell. Their parts seem to be total crap. When I say this it's hard for me to explain because when everything is compared they probably have better parts, but they seem to break all the damn time. I think they do a piss poor job of assembling and manufactoring their hardware. It's decent hardware, just assembled crappy.


But Dell basically uses the same parts as everyone else; hard drives are by maxtor or western digital, processors are of course Intel and now AMD in some cases, network cards are through 3Com mostly, sound cards through legacy and intel, and ide support through intel.

The only things I can really see Dell having an impact on are the system board and, if applicable (which is mainly only the case with laptops) the video card. My Dell laptop uses an nvidia video card though which is what it shipped with. The Dell PC's are assembled pretty well too, especially compared to Gateway, in that there is generally easy access to the case and all removable pieces are bright green plastic.

As far as support goes, I don't really worry about it. Dell has decent online support, but the parts are ridiculous. That's where newegg comes in. The biggest PC manufacturer is inherently not going to have the best customer service since so much would have to be outsourced, but their Gold support is awesome.

I have briefly used an emachines PC and I'd have to say that for the price, they seem pretty good.
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Postby acsguitar » Mon Mar 06, 2006 3:19 pm

Compaq is crap agreed.

If you definitly don't wanna build your PC I'd go with a dell I guess.

Just don't let a salesman convince you which one you need..

Tell me what you wanna do with it and I'll convince ya ;-D
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Postby Phatferd » Mon Mar 06, 2006 3:22 pm

I'm not trying to argue with you so please don't take this the wrong way, I am just enjoying the discussion and want to keep it going...

I'm not talking about accessibility, I am talking the actual assembly of their items. I know I am not alone because I have read other people's complaints, but I am sure the same can be said for everyone. Especially with computers because people are insanely partial.

I had 2 Dells (older models, b/c I won't buy from them now) and they did not last a year before there were hardware issues. I had a HD die and my RAM couldn't be read when it booted up after about 9 months.

I have friends with issues more recently. One person also had a HD crash and another had sound card issues. I've also seen a new Dell that has already had issues that they just couldn't figure out. Everytime the computer would boot it would shut down and this was about a year into the purchase and nothing was added to the computer to change its settings. To Dell's credit they replaced it without trying to fix it and delaying the process.
You have no frame of reference, Donny. You're like a child who walks into the middle of a movie...
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Postby acsguitar » Mon Mar 06, 2006 3:26 pm

My company uses Dell.. .don't get a GX270..They have Mobo problems that cause it to reboot constantly after a while
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Postby Coppermine » Mon Mar 06, 2006 3:28 pm

Those are all reasonable problems, especially with the booting and memory problems which could just as easily be the memory as it is the motherboard. The hard drive though I wouldn't blame on dell.

In my IT position, with all these Dell's around me, I've found that failing hard drives are by far the biggest problems. They're usually booting problems and STOP errors though which may or may not be user error.

In almost every case, it's an older Dell using a Maxtor hard drive. The replacements Dell sends now are all Western Digital, which I would say is a superior brand. On top of that, I have yet to see a hard drive problem with a Dell purchased in the past two years, because they all ship with WD hard drives now.

Just my $0.02. I know how it's hard to change your mind when you've made a decision on a brand or company. I'll never buy a GM car after I drove a crappy Cavalier, even if tomorrow every car magazine on earth tells me that Chevys are the best cars ever made (haha, fat chance).
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