: New Computer Options in $500-$750 range?
2006-12-29, 03:13 PM
Hello All, I am in the market for a new computer and would like to get people's opinions. I am not even sure if I would like a laptop or a PC. I want to get the most bang for my buck and just need the tower if I go PC as I have everything else. I would be using this to burn movies and cd's, email, downloading, etc. I like the portability of a laptop, but other than that I don't really have a need for it I don't think. I would also be interested in perhaps using it as a media centre, but I do currently have a full set up as you can see in my signature and am wondering if it is worthwhile to go HTPC as well. I don't do a lot of gaming and would probably just get an Xbox or PS3 for that. I am also wondering if it is better to get a brand name or just a homemade PC as my brother in law can create one for me if I let him know what I want. I guess what I'm asking is what all do I need in my new computer based on my usage above. Also, I would like to keep this in the $500-$750 range if possible.
Your budget is not huge so I recommend going to BB or FS this week and find the best deal for $699.
For that price you can get an HP or similiar computer that should meet your needs and comes with an OS and some practical software.
2006-12-29, 04:46 PM
I would never buy a computer from FS. Their cheap stuff can't be upgraded -- video on motherboard with no video slot and that kind of thing.
Your local computer store can build you a "white box" PC for the same money. Computer are commodities -- even name brand PCs are made up of off-the-shelf parts.
2006-12-29, 04:53 PM
Actually most of the BB and FS PC's use standard parts and are upgradeable like most systems. In fact, you will get much more upgrade hassles with large company computers like Dell because they tend to use non-standard components in many of their systems.
2006-12-29, 10:13 PM
Guys, I will consider a FS computer for my parents as they need a new one as well. How much would I be looking at if I was to get something better for myself? I can hold off for a bit and save a bit more if necessary. All I need is a tower as I already have a monitor, keyboard, etc. Also, what should I be looking for processor wise and graphics wise, etc. I would like to possibly use this for HD DVD playback when a drive comes out.
2006-12-30, 12:42 PM
I'd consider a Dell over a cheap FS/BB PC.
2006-12-30, 05:03 PM
Is there a way to buy just a tower from Dell? I only see the deals that include the monitor online.
2006-12-30, 07:04 PM
I believe you can start with one of their promotions, then through a sales agent, tell them you don't want the monitor, etc and they'll let you use the credit to upgrade RAM, processor, graphics card,etc. I did this with my Inspiron 6400 laptop in Sept. There was a bundle with a free 2gb USB drive and free blue-tooth, neither of which I needed. They couldn't discount the deal, but did allow me around a $200 credit to spend on upgrading the processor, graphics card, and wireless card. If I remember right, the first agent wouldn't do it but the second one I talked to would. Go figure.
2006-12-31, 01:10 PM
Ok, thanks for the help with that, I'll look into that as well.
2006-12-31, 02:40 PM
Actually most of the BB and FS PC's use standard parts and are upgradeable like most systems. Of course they use standard parts. But some "standard" motherboards are pretty minimalist and some "standard" enclosures only have room for 1 removeable drive and 1 internal hard drive. Dell might use their own enclosures but everything else is off-the-shelf too.
2007-01-01, 08:13 PM
Ok guys, so I've looked into the girlfriends computer and with a little upgrade it will do for awhile for us yet. Our one major issue is RAM. I have found it only has 256mb but is expandable to 2GB. Where is the best place to get a deal on 2700 or 3200 DDR RAM?
2007-01-02, 09:09 PM
Everyone's going to have a different opinion on where to buy RAM. My brief advice is:
1. Don't ever buy generic RAM. Go for a decent name brand like Kingston, Crucial, Corsair, maybe OCZ. (RAM problems are a huge pain to diagnose, and most people who've built there own machines have been bitten by generic RAM at one time or another). Value ram is fine provided it's name brand. (as long as you're ok with a typically higher latency).
2. If you're in Calgary, memoryexpress.com is very good. If you're in Ottawa, rbcomputing.com is very good. Both will do mail order. If you're in another city? No idea, though mail order might be an option. You could also use a price quote from either of those companies to try and get a competitive match. There are lots of other companies, some great, some terrible; those are two I've had consistently good experience with.