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Time for a new computer

Old 02-25-04, 10:15 AM
  #1  
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Time for a new computer

After 6 years of running my PII 300, I think it is finally time for a change of scenery. I am not looking to break the bank but I wouldnt mind investing into a decent machine.

I am looking to spend around $700-800 CDN on a computer (not incl monitor/printer) so that probably equals out to about $500-$650 US to you americans out there.

So, with this amount, do you think I can get a decent computer built for me, I am not looking to purchase one at a store, I know a guy who can bulid them and he has a good track records, here is a quick e-mail he sent just for an idea.

"for around $750.00 you can get...a complete new tower..new mobo 8x agp, 400 fsb/400 ddr ram so it's upgradeable....looking at a 128mb video card, 40 gig hdd, cd burner, cdrom, 256mb ddr ram...
it will handle even the newest xp cpu's, supports ddr ram pc2100, 2700,3200
cpu will be at the least a xp2000.

I'll bring up some more stuff....can also build...a fancy system see thru window lighted fans etc.."

It has been awile since I have researched computers and its components so I am not sure what is up to date and what is not.

Maybe some computer savvy people can reccomend some specs to me. I can also go a little over budget and under budget of course.

Also, dont forget, I am in Canada, so remember the exchange rate if recommending me something
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Old 02-25-04, 05:30 PM
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http://configure.us.dell.com/dellsto...dim83min&s=bsd

Dell.com

Dimension8300, 3GHz, 1GB Memory, 80GB, CD-ROM, $681

Intel Pentium4 processor at 3.0 GHz with Hyperthreading (HT) and 800MHz bus
Windows XP Home
1GB dual-channel 400MHz memory
Productivity Pack software
80GB ATA-100 7200rpm hard drive
no floppy drive
48x CD-ROM single drive
no monitor
GeForce-FX 5200 128MB Graphics Card with TV Out & DVI
Integrated 5.1 audio
no speakers
integrated 10/100 Ethernet
1 year basic plan warranty

Purchase price in this configuration comes to $649. After mandatory sales tax, the price should come to somewhere around $681, but your actual final total will vary depending on your state's sales tax. The only thing missing with this computer is a nice CD or DVD burner. Newegg has Sony black CD-R/RW burners for around $34 with free shipping, and a bunch of black dual-format DVD burners for $93-110.

4x the Memory, double the HD space, and a good waranty for not that much more then you quaoted above, not sure about the CAN $$ though.
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Old 02-25-04, 06:28 PM
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I think ~3 GHz CPUs still come in a premium price. Go for 2 GHz instead, so you can pick a better video card.
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Old 02-26-04, 04:42 AM
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I put together a system on newegg that exceeds most of the parts you had listed. Here is what is in it.

Enermax case with window
350 watt power supply included with case
Asus nforce2 A7N8X motherboard with intergrated sound (supports 400mhz fsb and 400mhz ddr)
AMD Athlon XP Barton 2500 (333 mhz fsb)
Sapphire Radeon 9600 128 mb
Crucial 512mb pc2700 (ddr 333mhz) ram
Western Digital Special Edition 120GB Hard Drive
Lite-On Black 48X24X48X16 Combo Drive DVD/cdrw
no floppy drive

All this for $537.49 plus tax and shipping from newegg. Shipping by them is usually pretty reasonable though. Add more if you need a copy of windows xp and for a monitor. I can email you the system if you send me your email address.

I would reccomend 512mb minimum for ram (256 isn't enough but 1 gb is too much for a $500 system). Also a 40 gb hard drive is too small, I would go 80 gb minimum. I would go Radeon 9600 minimum if you play any games, a geforcefx 5200 is a budget card and not that great when a 9600 can be had for ~95 bucks. Most motherboards sold now support 8x agp. DVD/cdrw drives are cheap even the combos, you should be able to get both even in your price range.

I would say consider building your own, it can be down and their are numerous resources online to walk you through it. You will learn so much about computers doing this. If you are too nervous then hopefully the system will atleast give you a cost estimate for what you should expect for your money.
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Old 02-26-04, 06:24 AM
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Re: Time for a new computer

Originally posted by ElementZ
After 6 years of running my PII 300, I think it is finally time for a change of scenery.
That's not THAT bad. I'm still using my Fujitsu laptop, Pentium 133, 80 megs of RAM (fullly upgraded!). Almost 8 years old.
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Old 02-26-04, 07:13 AM
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My last two PCs were AMD based systems, which needed more cooling and because of that seem to be louder overall. It could have just been the fans I was using, but now I own a dell.

This thing is so quite and I got such a great price, I can't even build one on my own this cheap. If you do go with Dell, I'd recommend doing a fresh install. I've setup over 8 Dells in the past two months and there is a major difference in performance over a Dell with the preinstalled OS and one with a newly installed OS.

My vote: Go for a Dell.
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Old 02-26-04, 06:48 PM
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Don't go for a dell.

Crappy support, and generally a lower quality machine. Plus you pretty limited on upgrades.
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Old 02-26-04, 10:36 PM
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Originally posted by Arden
Don't go for a dell.

Crappy support, and generally a lower quality machine. Plus you pretty limited on upgrades.
Not exactly true (sorry). I've had 2 Dells in the last 6 years with no problems whatsoever and managed to get great prices on them. Dell sells a lot of computers because they make a great product at a reasonable price.
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Old 02-26-04, 11:54 PM
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Originally posted by GMLSKIS
Not exactly true (sorry). I've had 2 Dells in the last 6 years with no problems whatsoever and managed to get great prices on them. Dell sells a lot of computers because they make a great product at a reasonable price.
All my recent customer service experiences have been poor at best.

The move to an India call center has dropped Dell to far below average on customer service IMO.

They still offer a good value in a computer; however, I would rather pay more and never have to deal with Dell's lack of customer service again.

The computer your friend can build might be a good deal. I would want to know the exact parts and specs before telling you if his computer would be a good deal.

If he knows the price then he can give you a list of parts and exact specs(for example: amount of ram, brand of ram, even part numbers)

You should get as much info as possible.
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Old 02-27-04, 04:50 AM
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Well, if you are in Canada then you should go where Canadians go for deals and info about comp stuff ... and that is ...

RedFlagDeals

Having said all that, in your price range I would go AMD or follow the RFD deals for dell.ca opportunities ....

I would consider something like this:


amd 2500+ Barton (leaves you lots of room for overclocking plus it's a big sweet spot processor) ~ 113 CAD.

512mb OCZ/Kingston/whatever pc3200 ram ~ 100-140 bucks

A decent case like the Antec slk2600amb with Antec PSU for ~ 70

Soltek 75FRN mobo for ~ 80

Take your pick HDD 120 gb ~ 120

Take your pick DVD burner ~ 120

Sapphire 9600xt vid card ~ 210

Assorted stuff like mouse, kb etc ...

You're looking around 900 bucks or so. Of course, depending on what you're doing you could downgrade your parts and save a ton of money and not miss any of the peformance hit. Especially if you're a non-gamer. You could swap the 9600xt for something less and save 75-80 bucks and be still really happy. Or even swap the mobo and get a mobo with IGP and save even more.

You may not need a dvd burner and be happy with a cdrw and dvdrom drive. That would save you ~ 40 bucks. You also don't need a 120gb drive. You could save a bit and get the 80gb drive if you don't need the space.

Many of these prices i've taken off the NCIX.com mailing list and they will price match almost anyone and vice versa.

Hope this helps.
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Old 02-27-04, 08:19 AM
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Originally posted by gcribbs
All my recent customer service experiences have been poor at best.

The move to an India call center has dropped Dell to far below average on customer service IMO.
I have to agree about the India Call center. I called to have a problem worked out, and it took 4 very long calls. Until finally Dell switched all Business accounts to the US, and then it only took one call.

If you purchase through Dell Home then you still rely on the India Call center. If you have a business account then the support comes from US call centers. And usually the prices are better in Small business for the same exact computer.
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