Buying new computer

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I need some advice about buying a new computer.  My employer is
allowing me to buy a new computer for working from home, with a very
limited budget.  I plan to buy from Dell but I'm unsure of what I need.
 I do accounts for a smallish business and at present I have an old
computer with Windows 98SE computer, 6.5GB of the memory has been used.
 I would like to be able to do a small amount of work with digital
photos on the computer, but in general it will be used for data
processing (Quickbooks and Microsoft Office).  I would like advice on
whether I need Pentium 4 or Celeron, and how much RAM I would need, and
also what speed.  I'm afraid I'm very behind the times on these things.


Re: Buying new computer

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You probably dont need all that powerful of a PC.  Get as good a PC as
you can in the budget they give you.  Go to DELL and sign up for email
advertisements from them cause sometimes they send you really good
coupons for decent discounts.

And keep checking their site cause they seem to change their sale
prices every week or so.

Just get at least 512-1 gig of memory preferably 1 gig but 512 is fine
depending on your budget.  The highest Pent 4 you can get given the
other parameters which have to fit in your budget. Dell LCD panel
monitor preferably a 19".  Get a DVD burner if possible.  Get a decent
sized HD like 120-160 gigs. A seperate graphics card would be nice. In
the lowest priced units they have graphics built in that shares memory
with your CPU. Doesnt have to be a great card something like a 300 ATI
or 6200-6600 nvidia would be fine or higher if they have a cheap
package deal.

Check out the deals there and configure a system and then post the
specs here. But check for coupons and GOOGLE  for DELL deals, DELL
coupons. People usually post DELLs that you might not find yourself if
you look around.

Re: Buying new computer

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You could post this at the newsgroup
and get a lot of comment about this. It would help if you post
your budget.

Re: Buying new computer

John, thanks for the advice, it is expremely helpful.

Pen, thanks for that hint, I have posted on to that forum now.

Re: Buying new computer

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I priced the Dell E310 for about $1000 with the 19in LCD, 1GB of
RAM, WinXP Pro, 2.8GHz P4. According to this review and pictures,
there is no slot for a video card upgrade, if you ever decided
you wanted a different graphics solution. From your application
description, this box might be just what you are looking for,
as the built-in graphics should be fine for any 2D applications
like Photoshop or Microsoft office. But this won't be a gaming
computer (poor 3D graphics).

P4 2.8GHz
WinXP Pro
1GB RAM (for running Photoshop and Office at the same time)
80GB hard drive
16X DVDROM (default - reads CD or DVD, no burning)
3.5" floppy (for passing small files to people with old comps)
19 inch E196FP Analog Flat Panel
Dell USB Keyboard and Dell Optical USB Mouse

The Dell E510 has a video card, and would be the next step up.,aid,124731,pg,2,00.asp

Both these computers are BTX form factor, and as far as I know, the
processor's warm air is vented from the front of the computer case.
There is a plastic cowling over the processor area, that
forms a "wind tunnel", to cool the processor. The BTX packaging
concept is focused on improving processor cooling, and the
fan should not have to roar to keep the processor cool. I think
there are still PCI expansion slots, if you want to plug in
some kind of PCI card later. Multiple PCI slots or futuristic
PCI Express x1 slots, are good for enhancing features that the
basic box doesn't do well (like, say, a TV tuner). There
aren't a lot of PCI Express plugin cards yet, so the plain
PCI slots are worth more to you at the moment.


Re: Buying new computer

On Wed, 01 Mar 2006 07:26:12 -0800, ardnasx1 thoughtfully wrote:

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You should consider buying the fastest Pentium 4 you can afford with at
least 1gig of memory and 80gig of HD, CDrom (DVD-RW better) and of course
WinXP installed.

Onboard soundcard, ethernet and video are ok.

You should have 2 free PCI slots and either 1 AGP or PCI-E video slot.

Pentium 4 over Celeron but at least 2.66 g or better.  I think the
Pentiums are still better for video and number crunching than Celerons.

1 gig of memory for MS Office apps and multitasking, like working on open
spreadsheets, databases, Outlook and Quickbooks in the same session. Less
than 512mg memory is the minium you should get but multiple apps may run a
bit slower.

80gig is an average sized hd but 40-60 may be enough depending on the your
files and budget.

Dell is a good vendor.  Check their outlet site for refurbished and out of
stock pc discounted pcs.  Look at the business optimized Optiplex brand
those for about $650.

HP has also been selling good
inexpensive computers although some are AMD cpus.    If you go AMD pick
AMD64 3200 or better.   Your description either cpu vendor will fit your

Re: Buying new computer

ardnasx1 wrote:
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Almost anything you get new today will be more than suitable.
However, it sounds as if you are doing accounting.  A dropped bit
can be a monstrous problem, and you should take the elementary
precaution of INSISTING on ECC memory.  This is practically immune
to errors due to either chip faults or such uncontrollable things
as cosmic rays.  This means you must get a machine with a suitable
mother board and chip set, besides the actual memory.

The support and warranty you get from Dell will be minimal, in fact
virtually useless unless you enjoy hearing parroting of a script in
an Indian accent.  Go to a local computer shop, and get them to
build something for you.  The odds are you will have much better
support, and a much better machine.  The price will probably be
highly competitive.

That way you will probably get proper installation cds for the OS,
instead of the totally useless restore mechanisms outfits like Dell

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Re: Buying new computer

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