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Author Topic: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?  (Read 5043 times)

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Offline ElectricAl

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Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« on: November 27, 2005, 03:47:15 PM »
Our family has pooled together to buy a computer for a needy single mother who is a free lance writer.

We have decided on a Pentium 4 processor, with monitor, printer, CD drive, 3.5 floppy, and internet capabilities (with virus protection).

Some of the contributors don't like Hewlett Packard or Gateway.  I found a system that was affordable, with the capabilities she needs, through Dell.  I haven't heard anything bad about them. 

Suggestions would be helpful, we need to stay around $600 or $700 

Al and Linda
Linda and I custom saw NHLA Grade Lumber, do retail sales, and provide Kiln Services full time.

Offline mike_van

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #1 on: November 27, 2005, 03:50:44 PM »
We like Dell's.  we have 4 computers in the house, the Gateway has "fits" from time to time, the Dells work fine - wifes is a year old, the one I use is a 1998 model, P3   Win 98 - Had to format it once due to virus's [kids] It just keeps going -  :)
I was the smartest 16 year old I ever knew.

Offline Modat22

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #2 on: November 27, 2005, 03:57:55 PM »
not had a problem with a dell yet, I stay away from the shaped cases just in case a cd drive goes out, that way you can replace it with a standard cd recorder.
remember man that thy are dust.

Offline Linda

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #3 on: November 27, 2005, 04:10:32 PM »
What about the advantages of Pentium over Celeron processors?

We've heard that a celerons can't have as many windows and programs running simultaneously as a pentium.

Al and Linda
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Offline crtreedude

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #4 on: November 27, 2005, 04:24:56 PM »
Dell seems to make a good system. As far as number of windows open, that will be more about memory, than CPU. Usually if you have the choice between more memory or a faster CPU, get more memory. Microsoft products just eat memory.

Something I might just do for a needy family is install Linux with OpenOffice - it is Microsoft Office compatible and with Linux, she won't need a lot of virus protection, etc. And of course, all the above is free.

So, how did I end up here anyway?

Offline Modat22

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #5 on: November 27, 2005, 04:32:20 PM »
depending on what your gonna do with it depends on wether you should get a celeron or not.

If there is any chance that she will be doing graphics work or playing heavy duty games then she won't need a p4.  The pentium will run a little faster but not much. If your talking about a 25 dollar add on then get the p4.
remember man that thy are dust.

Offline Ianab

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #6 on: November 27, 2005, 04:35:49 PM »
Quote
We've heard that a celerons can't have as many windows and programs running simultaneously as a pentium.

The Celeron chips just aren't as fast as the P4s for the same clock speed. They have less internal cache and a slower external clock. They are of course cheaper, and will do the same job, it will just take a little longer. For a home PC they are good enough.

And I agree with the Dell PC being good value and they use standard enough components to repair / upgrade later if need be.

Cheers

Ian
Weekend warrior, Peterson JP test pilot, Dolmar 7900 and Stihl MS310 saws and  the usual collection of power tools :)

Offline Part_Timer

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #7 on: November 27, 2005, 05:18:29 PM »
Al and Linda

We have a dell system at work that runs an entire papermachine.  3 highend servers and 5 regular $600 dollar ones that serve as operator stations.  It has been in  place for 2 years and I haven't had any problems. THese computers run 24 hours a day 365 days a year.  They have 18 of them in the front office and have had a couple of problems but they were taken care of under warrenty with out any hassel. 

just my .02

Tom
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Kirk_Allen

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #8 on: November 27, 2005, 05:38:44 PM »
I have both a Dell laptop and a Dell PC and cant say enough about them.  Great systems and priced right. 

If the computer is for wrighting purpose I would go with the Celron chip and save a few pennies.  As mentioned, if the P4 is only a few bucks more I would get that.

My Aunt has a Gateway and has had nothing but problems and lousy tech support.

I would suggest getting the three year warranty if possible.  When I fried a screen on my laptop a couple years ago a tech was at my house replacing it the day I got back from my trip.  Total satisfaction.

Offline Larry

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #9 on: November 27, 2005, 07:44:43 PM »
free lance writer.


That really struck a chord.  We bought a new Dell with all the goodies little over a year ago to replace an excellent Gateway.  It got replaced because it had MS 95 and the monitor was going dim.  The Dell came with home XP which is loaded with Word Perfect.  Word Perfect has got to be the biggest piece of junk for word processing in the universe.  We bought a new monitor for the Gateway just so we could continue to use MS Word 97.

I think if you buy the Dell with the office software...more money of course...ya get some kind of decent word processor. 

Cheap option is some of the free open source software but ya got to know what your doing to use it.
Larry, making useful and beautiful things out of the most environmental friendly material on the planet.

We need to insure our customers understand the importance of our craft.

Offline Corley5

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #10 on: November 27, 2005, 08:50:03 PM »
We're on our second Dell and couldn't be happier with it.  A friend of mine has two Gateways and was always talking about how great they were and the excellent tech support that Gateway had.  I told him we really liked our Dell and had heard good things about their support but we'd never had to call them ;) ;D  He still has his two Gateways but the last time I was over to his place he was using our 1st Dell which he bought from us ;D ;D ;D 
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Offline Shawn

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #11 on: November 27, 2005, 09:55:43 PM »
Mark me down for DELL. I used to have a used laptop. Any needed parts or upgrades were availible. My new laptop is just awesome. We have 2 DELL desktop. No problems to Report. Gateway seemed to be $$$$$. Compaq/HP are JUNK!!!
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Offline DanG

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #12 on: November 27, 2005, 10:02:00 PM »
One of my buddies got a Dell.  He tried his darndest to get me to buy one too.  He bought into one of those "deals" where you get the "complete" package for $499.  By the time he upgraded to a usable amount of ram and HD space, plus added the drives and the monitor, he had $1100 in it.  He still thinks he's happy.  I, on the other hand, went to Walmart and got the Compaq system in a box for $498.  Mine is equivilant in every way to his, except mine has a card reader.  Mine was $1 cheaper, too. ;D  I haven't had a chance to check out the tech support service, though.  He's checked his several times, and says its fine. ;)
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Offline GHRoberts

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #13 on: November 27, 2005, 10:09:25 PM »
Since this system is for a free lance writer, perhaps you should ask her what her needs are.

$600 buys a nice laptop.

Kirk_Allen

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #14 on: November 27, 2005, 10:18:06 PM »
DanG I have to agree with you on the Compaq system.  I have a freind who is a programer for the state of PA and he has at least three of those systems and loves them. 

Offline chet

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #15 on: November 27, 2005, 10:38:03 PM »
My newest is a Compaq, da jury is still out.
I am a true TREE HUGGER, if I didnt I would fall out!  chet the RETIRED arborist

Offline Faron

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #16 on: November 27, 2005, 10:57:25 PM »
I have a Compac that is always giving me one problem or another.  I really don't know if the problem is the computer or the Windows ME that is installed on it.
Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for dinner.  Liberty is a well armed lamb contesting the vote. - Ben Franklin

Offline beenthere

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #17 on: November 27, 2005, 11:53:13 PM »
I've had several Gateways, and as far as the computers themselves (the hardware) - no problems.  My only problems have been with the software. The operating system (MS 98SE) on two computers I bought in 2000 have been grief since day 1. Shut-down was one of the big ones initially.  Obsolescence has been one of recent. Having to go through Gateway to get system help (however I discovered this past summer that I have lifetime technical help with these Gateways and didn't know it) is a real pain.  These techs seem to want to solve the problem quickly by re-formatting the hard drive, and don't care one iota about the chore of reloading all the software back on it. Not their problem.
It's frustrating, but nowadays it seems like you are real lucky if you get one that speaks English so it can be understood. I don't do well translating India English.
A month ago, I downloaded an update for MS 98SE, and it came with spyware that took over my computer. I contacted MS and they gave the standard answer "Contact the computer manufacturer". Hmmphh!
south central Wisconsin
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Offline ksu_chainsaw

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #18 on: November 28, 2005, 04:27:41 AM »
I have used lots of different brands of computers, but I have had the least problems with the older compaqs and dell desktops.  I like my Averatec laptop that I got while I was overseas.  It works well, and I have not had any problems with it, even when it was being used in Iraq.  As for a printer, I love my hp laser 1012.  I used it for over a year, and am still on the same toner cartridge.  And they are not that much more than a good inkjet printer.

just my 2 cents

Charles

Offline OneWithWood

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Re: Computer experts: What brand computer would you buy?
« Reply #19 on: November 28, 2005, 04:45:50 AM »
The universtiy I work at uses Dells almost exclusively, except for high graphic apps where a Mac is the unit of choice and high end super-computing.  The Dell machines are adequate for the average user.  The university applications are trending towards desktop PCs being used more as a dumb client so the actual useability of the machine on my desk is not really tested.
For over 15 years I have used Gateway machines for my own personal businesses.  I have been very happy with the Gateways and find them much easier to configure and add hardware to than the Dell machines.  There is very little difference in the components used to build most machines today.  I look at the ease of expandability to decide between machines.  Probably not an issue for the application you mention. 
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