If you were getting a computer what brand would you buy?

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Old 01-18-02, 04:34 PM
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If you were getting a computer what brand would you buy?

compaq, dell ,HP, emachine ,gateway , generic ,in your opion which is the best and why.
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Old 01-18-02, 06:55 PM
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Cool Build

Well to be honest I would build my own. Itís not difficult and you will learn a lot! You also gain the ability to know what each device is for etc. You are going to spend about the same amount of money building as buying and not have all the Dell, Gateway, HP - B.S. loaded up on it. I/we can advise you step by step and with todayís plug and pray (play) motherboards itís a snap.
But if I were to go buy one I would stay Dell or Gateway. The biggest draw back is they are both pretty much proprietary and upgrading can be very expensive. The best part is 24/7 tech support, some pimple faced nerd reading from a flow chart advising you to change your underwear everydayÖ Does it show that I donít like em? Anyway, build, Iíll/weíll help you and believe me you will enjoy it!
Old 01-19-02, 05:13 AM
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Take heed and build one. I havn't yet but with help from these folks I shall build my next one. What I can tell you from experience is stay away from Compaq! They are the most proprietary company out there hardware and software wise. You can't even do an OS only install after a format and nothing will fit them except Compaq parts. Stay away from HP Pavillions...The small tower design makes hard working on and just a power supply will cost you 3 times what it should from HP. Hint: emachines power supplies fit HP Pavillion for half the money.
Its a shame that for $1200.00 you can't buy a computer with great hardware in it but you can't. I'm not sure for any amount of money there is a PC with a collection of parts that won't start failing shortly after the one year warranty is over. Most of the parts at the sites mentioned in the above posts come with 2-5 year warranties and for instance at PC Powercooling you can get an ultra quite 300 watt power supply (very nice) for about 150.00. Sounds high but factor the money you payed for a supply in a store bought PC, the problems encountered when it fails, buying a new one and the work to change it, the price of the aftermarket supply begins to look real good.
If you insist you can't build it yourself try a custom shop. We have one that will assemble a collection of decent parts, put it together and even install your OS and programs if you like all for no more than a sale price PC.....Mike
Old 01-19-02, 11:10 AM
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Middle TN
Posts: 222
Best Computer?


During the holidays, my sister was visiting from Australia. She was wanting a new computer but was having a hard time finding what whe wanted in Au. We were lucky to have a computer show in Nashville while she was here, so we picked up a MB, CPU, hard drive, video card, CDRW, and 512MB of memory. We built the computer in a spare case that I had, then we took it all apart and she packed it in her suitcase (minus the tower case) for her trip home. Last week when she got home, she bought a case and put it all together, and it works. The point is....

She is 54 years old, a music teacher, and had never seen the inside of a computer till last month. If she can learn to put one together in just a few hours, anyone can. Especially with all of the help that you can find here.

Build it a piece at a time. Buy a MB, CPU, and memory, along with a case, and put it together first. Then if you like, swap your old video card and drives. Later, in the event that something goes wrong, you will know exactly how to fix it. I like know that if my computer goes down, the tech support is already sitting my desk.

Old 01-30-02, 01:23 PM
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Thumbs up Build your own...

This Link is ideal for those thinking about building their first PC. You'll find full instructions which are well written and easy to follow
Old 01-31-02, 07:19 PM
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Building your own definitely has it's merits. However, in a lot of ways it is like the man who is his own lawyer. When something doesn't work, there is no one left to blame. If you are looking for a package, definitely Dell. If you feel adventurous, build. Building is cheaper but tech support and warrenty are you. All the component manufacturers will point at each other. I wouldn't touch a local builder unless you personally know someone who vouches for their product. Here today, gone next week because it was easier to drop out than fix your mistakes.
Old 02-02-02, 08:26 AM
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I have to agree with the group and say build one unless you do not have the operating system and necessary software already. The software is what will bite you in the rear all the time. If you do but I agree with BigMike, Dell or Gateway. The only thing that I disagree with him is the pimple faced geek line since I was there for a couple of years. Also if you avoid the low end systems you dont get the proprietary of integrated components.

Best recommendation I can make. Price the components you will need (case, power supply, Motherboard, video card, soundcard, memory, monitor and speakers, modem or Nic card) as well as the software that you will need (full version of the OS you want to run, office or works suite or a stand alone Word and whatever turns your crank) and then compare them to a higher end system from either Dell or Gateway. If you have that software from an older system then by all means build it yourself. Also check the used software shops if you are in a larger city or on the net. You can pick up a full version of win98 for a decent price usually and then upgrade from there.
Old 02-03-02, 09:08 PM
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I'd say build my own, however if that isn't an option, I'd go with Dell as my first pick, Gateway as my second. If price weren't an object, go with Alienware... www.alienware.com . Good Luck
Old 02-13-02, 06:38 PM
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Alienware. If you don't mind spending the bucks, go for it. If I had to buy a packaged PC, I would pick Dell. Gateway's system architecture is cheap and over priced in my opinion.

If you were to build your own, the only question is whether to go with an Intel or AMD solution. I, myself prefer AMD - 30% more processing power for 2/3 the price of an Intel system.

Also, there are some awsome mainboards out there for AMD processors, some of which have integrated onboard sound, graphics, ethernet, RAID controller, etc. You can always expand later.
Old 02-14-02, 09:46 AM
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Be thrifty if your're building your own

It is true that building you own can save you money. But beware, the shipping costs on all of those individual pieces can add up.

Ebay has off the wall manufacturers (X-tech, ecollege, etc) that I have bought my last three computers from. And their prices are reasonable if your comparing apples to apples.

If you want to play around with a computer to learn how they work then get an Athlon. That processor will allow you to overclock it with the correct motherboard.
Old 02-14-02, 10:38 AM
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Well the way I look at it is if you are building your own buy the best. Instead of $1400 for Dell and OEM equipment, advertising etc. Buy Asus, Tyan mainboard, Creative sound products. Mitsumi CD ROM and floppy, Kingston memory, the biggest power supply you can get and a NICE tower. Not one of the 29.95 jobs from stick it to you brotherís computer shop. Good videoÖ You get my drift. Yea you still end up having 800 to 900 dollars tied up but YOU have the best and not a bunch of steal your dollar junk in your system. Not to mention once you build your own you know how it works. What does what, one because you had to research the parts, two because if you arenít running at least 98SE your going to have to install each driver and get it working etc. So now's the time to buy ME or XP or 2000. BUT if you are building go with a gig or so, you wonít have to upgrade again for a year or so. I/we can lead you by the hand to do this so donít be afraid of it. Itís really not that hard. A bottle of Tequila, some Thorazine and itíll go like a breeze. Like it says on the bottle, take two and keep away from children.
Old 02-15-02, 10:10 AM
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Here's my .02. My son has been building computers since he was about 14. It is the same wherever you go in the fact that you get what you pay for. Recently built a new machine with great video, Abit motherboard, a AMD Athlon 1.6 processor. Lightning fast. To ensure proper cooling purchased a tower designed for overdriving.

Dell, HP, Gateway, are OK, but they are designed with minimum standards. 150 Watt powersupplies. In this day and age, as you are driving multiple add ons, this won't do. Also, HP is known for integrating Sound and Modem on board. Bad idea, as it creates conflicts, and causes you to replace entire board if there is a failure.

Build it and it will compute!
Old 02-24-02, 09:11 PM
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WOW. I just started posting here about some home electrical stuff and decided to wonder around the board. Glad to see some DIY pc people. If I was going to buy i would say Gateway or Dell. The advatage of Gateway over Dell is that Gateway has Stores where you can take a machine if it breaks.(Trust me it will). I work for Gateway in the service department and i can tell you most of the problems i see are with software. I think Dell does a little better with the orig. software install. But i only know one person with a Dell but he loves it. Me on the other build all my own computers. My newest is an AMD XP1800+ and dang its fast. I used a Soyo Dragon+ with 256mb DDR ram. I buy everything online except memory. Sence memory is cheap and can go bad more liklythen a CPU or motherboard i like the fact i can ake it to a local store and just exchange it. http://www.pricewatch.com . THis s a good sorce for priceing. DO YOUR HOMEWORK. Like someone else said above you are your tech support. Goodluck and Godspeed.
Old 02-25-02, 04:39 AM
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My machine is an AMD XP 1600 and yes! It is fast, and less expensive than a Pentium 4. In reading up on them, I invested in a tower that is very well ventilated. 4 fans, not including the cpu fan and Video Card.
Old 02-25-02, 02:11 PM
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What type of board and case did you use? I agree 110% on AMD v/s P4. The price alone is enough to make my dession for me but AMD spanks Pentium on every test. Are you into case modding? I have an Antec Server tower with 6 fans, a baybus fan controller and a window cut in the side to look like the 3 rings of the Trinity w/ blue neon. Case moddin is the greatest. Here is a really cool site for th DIY folksHTM Good luck with your projects and Godspeed
Old 02-26-02, 07:44 PM
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all computers are the same no matter where you buy it.
Old 02-27-02, 04:12 AM
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Loki, I got a case called the icebox. 2 side fans, 1 year, and 1 front, plus the 2 on board, and one on the video card. It keeps things nice and cool.
Old 03-10-02, 12:42 PM
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Exclamation build it

if you are just the average user and are going to be doing the minamal of just surfing a stuff, and are not too computer literate i said to buy a dell.
but if you have any computer knowledge and availble software, i'd build it. even if you don't have all the needed software, if you just get the os first, you can pretty much find the software you'll need on the web.
build it, learn a little about the pc and if you need help just ask. its just like putting a bulb in a light.
Old 03-10-02, 09:23 PM
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Build your own.

My son and I built one each. It was fun and easy, and you get to put all the parts that you want, instead of what the companies can buy for cheap cheap.

We also have a Compaq and the most used software on it was the restore disk. Until we changed some hardware and formated the hard drive a WD 20GIG and loaded Win 98SE and word perfect instead of MS office 97 that came with it.

So the box says Compaq, but we felt so good about building our own. We thought why not free the compaq to be a Better Computer also.

Some people buy store bought just for the OS and software that the Company puts on it. You can get Win 98SE for under $90.00 & Word Perfect for $48.00 then put some programs on that you want like Printmaster & Paint Shop Pro, and you are good to go. Good luck on what ever you choose.
Old 03-11-02, 03:30 AM
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Build it. You'll learn a bunch and have a good time.... [email protected]! If you're on a time constraint, go to a custom site like Hard Drives Northwest www.hdnw.com and pick all your (non-proprietary) components and have them assemble/test it. I went this route before moving from Seattle and haven't had a problem in 18 months. Dell if you buy new, safest bet.
Old 03-17-02, 09:12 PM
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Build or Dell

I have purchased 3 dell systems and have been happy with all of them - and the customer support when it was needed.

I was hesitant to build due to my own ignorance, but now will build when I decide to get another one.

Stay away from Compaq (the worst -after packard bell...), and HP also seems to have a lot of proprietary stuff that makes upgrades and changes a problem.
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