PC Recommendation for mother in law


Old 12-01-06, 06:17 AM
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PC Recommendation for mother in law

Loooking for a sub $500 PC for the mother in law. I am in CT and the PC would be in Fl so would need something from a manufacturer that has good tech support and is a basic solid PC, does not need anything fancy, MS OS, MS Office.

Does anyone recommend any specific brands or ones to stay away from? To me Dells have dropped off and they install some spy/adware which is just wrong. I build all my PCs from scratch and really do not deal with low end pre-built machines. Usually use higher end stuff at jobs, so if anyone has any suggestions or horror stories please let me know.
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Old 12-01-06, 07:31 AM
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Got a Dell

Just got a Dell Dimension E521 for a relative.

Least expensive thing I could find. Just the case, XP Home software (no Media Center Edition, Word or Office), AMD Athlon chip (spent $20 on the upgrade), keyboard, mouse, 512 MB memory, $20 modem card, intergrated graphics and ethernet, DVD ROM/CD RW drive, 80 gig SATA HD, and free shipping.

No floppy drive, monitor or printer.

$370 delivered.

Couldn't beat it anywhere. Comparable eMachines packages were sold out. Stuff at local retailers was more money for less machine or included a monitor that wasn't needed.

It has 4 slots for memory, so I might add some more. Mine has 2 gigs and it is much faster than the 512.

Had to take it to my house to do the "Windows Update" thing because there was too much for a dial up connection. I would have thought that the most up to date versions would ship out.

Also had some difficulties interfacing with the old Epson printer, but that was worked out eventually.

I'm not particularly fond of Dell and their business practices either, but they met the price point.

Other than that, it worked out of the box, and there is available tech support, and that is all that matters.
Old 12-01-06, 08:02 AM
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You might consider a laptop.. There are some real nice HP/Compaq machines going for under $500..
Old 12-01-06, 10:16 AM
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I highly recommend 'HP,' as seeing that your mother-in-law needs tech. support. The HP has 24 hours and 7 days support, from 'back-up' to 'Hardware' problems. I contacted many times due to the numerous problems originating from three HP printers, mostly by 'Live Chat.' You could ask as many times as you want, until the problem got solved. For one issue, I did this, three times due to my hesitation of 're-install' XP when one of computers failed to open the screen. They are all nice, friendly, cauteous and first of all, VERY knowledgeable and eager to help you the best they can. Waiting period getting in 'Chat' is just a minute or so.

There are four computers in my household, all made by the HP and VERY happy with all four. Older model is actually '98 in it, but I converted it to 'xp' because of proficiency of access and other reasons.

As to 'price,' ... there are few, under $500.00. When I went to local Staple other day purchasing one of HP Inks, I saw a very fantastic computer that is Compaq, but this is made by Compax/HP due to its merger last year, so. I can not recall the exact power/RAM, but 526 RAM with reasonable powerful computer. The price is under $400.00 after Rebate and store-discount. I almost wanted to grab it, but I didn't tho'.

As long as she does not need some 'complex programs' which need exclusive powerful computer, Compaq/HP computer under $500.00 is an answer to your mother-in-law.

Here is HP sites to look at:

Also, here is Support Site, if there is question to ask before purchasing:

Good Luck on searching a right computer for your mother-in-law.
Old 12-01-06, 05:03 PM
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HP has excellent tech support as long as the item is under warranty. After that- big time consultation fee per incident.

Dell is probably the same way after warranty, but I don't think the fee is as high.

Buddy of mine had a color laser printer problem after warranty (like just after) and HP wanted $90 to give him the time of day.
Old 12-01-06, 10:34 PM
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I was completely NOT aware of 'warranty period' about which you're mentioning. Because, four HP computers have different age, from 5-6 years old to less than one year, although printers are relatively 'new.'
Once, I had a problem with one of older computers which is 5-6 years old, but they didn't ask any. Probably, they know I have several 'newer' HPs, or all depends on tech. For me, all techs are VERY nice and also 'generous,' not ask a money.

Upon purchase, I didn't buy 'Warranty' package, because it's NOT cheap. around $150 or around. Two older computers, I got from Wal-Mart as X-mas sales. Then, certainly I didn't get any frill, warranty. Just 'bare-bone.'

Luckily, I didn't have any problems, as of today. Just, in terms of 'software' conflict, but not anything big. However, two printers, one is Photosmart and other is 1600 All-in-One priced around $130. on sale from Staple. Those two gave me a lot of trouble, mainly because file necessary for installation has some conflict with XP. For that, I did 'chat' a lot until the problems were resolved. The all-in-one I've been using most is 're-furbished' printer after they found hardware had a problem and sent it for a replacement. It works GREAT.

In my recollection, they charged me less than $1.00 when I needed to re-install Xp due to lost DLL and the like. That was an over-the-phone tech. service. But, maybe on this, I had a warranty. The tech. told me beforehand, ... 'we'll charge, .... ,' but response was very quick, prompt. For that reason, I just got $1.00 charge? Either way, I didn't pay much. Hence, I was suprised to read your post, $90.00 that is an awful price. Also, there are few retailers locally that handles the Hp hardware problem as long as you have warranty.

All HPs, four computers along with two printers, I'm very happy with.

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