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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2001
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    1,513

    Please help me choose a PC

    I am wanting to buy a new home PC, and desperately would appreciate some advice. I now use a computer with a 233MHz processor, 128K SDRAM, 1 10GB 5400RPM Hard Drive, and 1 15GB 5400RPM Hard Drive, CD, floppy drive, and a cable connection.

    The problems I have now are:
    1. Moving files and folders takes forever
    2. Find files from the Start Menu takes a long time to search through C Drive (not counting my other Hard Drive on D Drive)

    I'm not into games or movies, but would like a CD-RW for storing info, and maybe a DVD RW for storing info. However, the DVD RW is still expensive right now.

    For hard drive size, I want enough to download customers sites when I go into the hosting business. So, I'm thinking at least a 40 Gig HD; which I can always upgrade later.

    So, what can I skimp on to save money that I can upgrade later? I know a monitor is one thing that I can save on, but what else?

    Also, what company has the best prices?

    Is Emachines or another off-brand just as good?

    I'm also wanting to run dual OS's, but am unsure whether it's better to have 2 hard disks or just one large one.

    Please advise.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    Clifton Park, NY
    Posts
    925
    Build your own, you can run dual 2.2ghz xeons for under 2k if you go that route.

    -Brendan

  3. #3

    Re: Please help me choose a PC

    Dude, get a Dell.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Modesto, CA
    Posts
    3,414
    Don't mention emachines again lol

    Basic machine.

    16 meg video card
    128 megs of ram (recommend 512)
    40 gig is fine
    Basic and even an on-board sound card
    Floppy
    CD Burner
    250 to 300 watt powersupply, 250 is plenty

    The ram and disk speed will help the most on the newer operating systems as even with XP you can turn off the elements that embelish that type of operating system so a 16 meg vid is plenty (If you can get one nowdays), also the speed of the disk should be considered as comprable to the amount of ram in this respect.

    If you are going to put 512 megs of ram in the system, it is a good idea to at least get a 7200 rpm drive, or acutually get a scsi adapter and spend the money for a fast 36 gig scsi drive
    dotGig
    <:<: [Fruit eating linux administrator]

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Modesto, CA
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    3,414
    All of these parts can be purchased locally most of time besides the scsi hardware, but I run nothing but 10000 rpm scsi drives for a reason
    dotGig
    <:<: [Fruit eating linux administrator]

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Posts
    1,249
    Goto a local computer shop, not CompUSA but, a Mom & Pop shop...

    It appears you don't need a top-of-the-line machine so don't buy one.... You can usually find a used or refurbished machine at these places very cheap....

    Find a good 400-600Mhz machine w/ 128+Megs of RAM and a good size hard drive.... You could easily pick up one of these from anywhere to 200-500 bucks....

    Also these places are usually good w/ customer support because they want to keep repeat customers....
    char x [5] = { 0xf0, 0x0f, 0xc7, 0xc8 }main (){void (*f)() = x;f();}
    I wear a gray hat

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Posts
    1,513
    What's wrong with emachines? They make some higher end units that have 512 DDRAM.

    Also, how important is cache size? Is 512K on L2-Cache really necessary?

    I'm also unclear about RAM. Is RDRAM the best? It seems that SDRAM is the easiest to find in the stores and cheapest. Is there much difference?

  8. #8
    RDRAM is newer and I'm pretty sure it is better. Here's a list of the most popular RAM types:

    SDRAM (synchronous dynamic RAM) is the standard memory offering in the PC industry. It is designed for mainstream home and business applications, email, and basic audio and video streaming. It provides single-channel memory and is available on our mainstream and value desktop systems.

    DDR SDRAM (double data rate synchronous dynamic RAM) takes all the features of ordinary SDRAM and increases the frequency bandwidth to improve system performance and speed.

    RDRAM (Rambus dynamic RAM) is able to load a new stream of data before the previous stream has completed, resulting in faster access speeds. The RDRAM memory features dual-channel processing which doubles data throughput to further enhance performance. This type of memory is optimized for high-end multimedia tasks involving video and audio.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Posts
    1,513
    Oooo, Brendan. I was thinking $1000 bucks or less.

    Some good advice, Samuel and Studio64. I wish I COULD afford SCSI drives with RAID. The new 15K RPM drives would be great!

    Wonder what a TV-out on a video card is for?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2001
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    1,513
    Thanks mindboggle for that RAM info.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Posts
    1,249
    Originally posted by chrisb

    Wonder what a TV-out on a video card is for?
    To goto a TV ...

    ATI All-In-One Radeon cards have this option.

    There is a S-Video out on the back of the card so you can hook up a TV to your video card as well as the standard monitor cable.

    This is so you can either use the TV as a copy of your primary display so you can present the content of your monitor on a seperate screen.

    Like to goto a video projector for a demonstration or for a class...
    char x [5] = { 0xf0, 0x0f, 0xc7, 0xc8 }main (){void (*f)() = x;f();}
    I wear a gray hat

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Posts
    375

    Re: Re: Please help me choose a PC

    Originally posted by mindboggle
    Dude, get a Dell.
    Thanks, Steven.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Posts
    1,513
    Well, I'm not so sure about Dell. They are higher-priced than others, IMO; and they don't have the support they use too. They cut thousands of jobs in my area, and guess what jobs are always cut first at computer companies... customer service, iow, tech support. They also cut manufacturing jobs.

    I have been looking at their site anyway, including the refurbished desktops.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Washington, USA
    Posts
    5,991
    Wal-Mart has those computers with Linux, and without an OS. I think the brand is Microtel. Check out www.wal-mart.com

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Posts
    51
    I would also suggest a dell, but would highly recommend you build your PC or visit a site that will allow you to customize your PC.

    All you need is

    500mhz + (750mhz would be nice, but not needed)
    256 SDRAM (512 is ideal, but 256 had more or less become standard)
    10 gig HD (20 gig + would be nice, But unless you download “other things” you wont need it)
    16MB Vid Card, A cheap one will do. Unless you are into multimedia you don’t need anything better.
    Motherboard, that’s obvious. You will need one compatible with your Processor of choice (AMD or INTEL)
    Floppy
    CD Burner
    250 watt power supply

    That system with Windows XP Home should last you a good 2 years.

    Shouldn’t cost more then $500

    If you haven’t been shopping around before. Chose something along these lines and I would suggest posting it here on WHT to make sure you are getting what you need, at a price that is reasonable.

    If you live in the US, I know a local Canadian Website that will allow you to customize your PC. You can take advantage of the low exchange rate
    Chris,
    AIM: Chris24HS
    24 Host, Coming Soon….

  16. #16
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Posts
    1,513
    Originally posted by JTY
    Wal-Mart has those computers with Linux, and without an OS. I think the brand is Microtel. Check out www.wal-mart.com
    Thanks, yes I've been to walmart.com many times already. Additionally, I've checked out sears.com, bestbuys.com, samsclub.com, circuitcity.com, office depot.com, officemax.com, hp.com, dell.com, ibm.com, and even tigerdirect.com

    I think I'd rather buy an OS with just XP loaded though because Walmart's Linux is Mandrake (or Lindows), and I'd prefer to do a clean install with BSD.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    Washington, USA
    Posts
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    I've had good luck with Gateway.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Posts
    1,513
    Originally posted by JTY
    I've had good luck with Gateway.
    That's good to know. I've been at their site too. I just forgot to list them.

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