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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug. 22, 2000
    Location
    CT
    Posts
    2,406

    Default New Computer?

    The power spike before our outage took out my computer monitor in spite of the surge protector. Borrowed a monitor and found the CPU is okay. However, it is old and I am thinking I should take the opportunity to update.

    So I am looking for a computer for office-type work, internet surfing and some photo editing. May do more in the future, but that is mostly what I do now. School will load Microsoft Office so it works with the computers at school and I have PowerPoint etc.

    I like the look of the all-in-ones especially with the wireless keyboard and mouse But not necessary if they are not as reliable. Otherwise I could do a desktop and monitor. I want reliability and, of course, a bargain.

    What does COTH recomend? Is there a better time to shop? I will likely stay with Windows - I see 8 is coming out, dont know if I need that. I have had Dell and HP/Compaq. School has Dells. Brands or features to look for or avoid?

    TIA



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun. 14, 2006
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    11,372

    Default

    I was in the market for a computer about 2 mos ago as my hubby took the family computer with him when he moved. I ended up buying an ASUS laptop at best buy with Windows 7. It has more memory and such than some of the desktops we buy from Dell for the floor. The price was right. And the keyboard is pretty decent.

    I have used the heck out of it in the last few months. If you want something for under 400 bucks, you might consider it. I didn't think I'd do a laptop when I first was shopping because I wanted something a little more robust. Well...laptops have gotten more robust.

    Bang for the buck, I'm very pleased with my little cheapy ASUS!
    A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

    Might be a reason, never an excuse...



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar. 30, 2007
    Location
    Hollowed out volcano in the South Pacific.
    Posts
    11,233

    Default

    AIOs are nice looking but I would not buy one. They are a nightmare to repair, use laptop components, and often pack too much hardware in too tight a space to provide proper cooling. If you want a small desktop, you can get a slim tower from Dell or HP in a discounted package with a monitor. HP has some great Slimline PCs that I like but you have to be sure to order a good configuration from HP because the ones you get in retail are pretty bad. Minimum specs you want on a desktop are a quad-core CPU, at least 8GB of memory, a DVD burner, and expandability for future needs with add-in cards. Not hard to get those these days. Integrated graphics are fine as long as they are the newer ones and if you get a normal-sized desktop, you can simply drop an add-in card with the latest and greatest if you need to upgrade.
    Thus do we growl that our big toes have,
    at this moment, been thrown up from below!



  4. #4
    Join Date
    May. 12, 2000
    Location
    NE TN, USA
    Posts
    6,201

    Default

    From the guru who builds my computers: If it's working, try to hold on for a year so they can work the bugs out of Windoze 8, then upgrade.

    I'm running XP on an 8 year old tower that's getting a bit cantankerous, waiting until late '13 to upgrade.
    “There are two ways to conquer and enslave a nation. One is by the sword. The other is by debt.”
    John Adams



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun. 24, 2005
    Location
    Alabama
    Posts
    8,577

    Default

    When they came out with Windows 7, as I recall they sold the Vista computers with a free upgrade to Windows 7, so I'm wondering if it will be the same this time. I would definitely upgrade, and don't forget the holiday weekend is coming up, so everyone should be having a sale.
    You can't fix stupid-Ron White



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug. 22, 2000
    Location
    CT
    Posts
    2,406

    Default

    Thanks for the input. Good info, much to think about!



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov. 1, 2007
    Location
    ....in a classroom in Fl, by the ocean
    Posts
    3,765

    Default

    when you pick out the one you want go to www.fatwallet.com then using their website as a 'window', go to the sony, dell, or whatever brand you decide on and buy your new PC 'through' the fatwallet site. They offer cashback and some times when you buy direct you can get a school discount when you prove you are a current student.

    Example- I wanted a new laptop after my PC was struck by lighting. I wanted a Sony and I went through Fatwallet, bought direct from Sony and gave them my student ID and received more off the total price. Fatwallet sent me a check for 3% of the total price and Sony took another 10% for being a student!

    I got $200 dollars off a new machine with all kinds of bells and whistles!



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug. 28, 2007
    Location
    Triangle Area, NC
    Posts
    6,710

    Default

    I love my Lenovo thinkpad. It's a T420s, and I'm running Windows 7

    It's virtually indestructible too... believe me.
    www.destinationconsensusequus.com
    chaque pas est fait ensemble



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec. 2, 2002
    Location
    Berlin, Germany
    Posts
    2,537

    Default

    I do the IT work (network configuration/management and all computer purchases) for my employer. Until this year, we had exclusively Lenovos due to their customer service and warranty, but we're looking into other options at this point.

    I just spent about 15 hours trying to get Lenovo to replace a machine that's less than 4 months old. After replacing the power supply, replacing the motherboard, and spending another 6 cumulative hours on the phone with Lenovo support, they agreed the replace the machine. All in all, this whole debacle has taken over a month to get resolved, and the computer has been completely useless in the meantime. When I finally spoke with someone in management and voiced my concern with how the entire thing was being handled, he told me IBM had cut Lenovo's support budget by 50% with plans for deeper cuts in 2013.

    I guess I should add the caveat that I am a die hard Mac user, and do all of the support for my organization via my MacBook Air. Apples to oranges when it comes to customer support...
    Here today, gone tomorrow...



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar. 30, 2007
    Location
    Hollowed out volcano in the South Pacific.
    Posts
    11,233

    Default

    IBM really has nothing to do with Lenovo products and their support is actually outsourced to other companies though IBM's name is still attached. They are definitely at the low-end of quality support which is why they aren't popular here in DC. Best companies to order from are HP or Dell. Both have significant third-party support all over the country and you can get spare parts for next to nothing from dozens of part suppliers if you need a new motherboard or fan or whatever.
    Last edited by LexInVA; Nov. 5, 2012 at 12:31 AM.
    Thus do we growl that our big toes have,
    at this moment, been thrown up from below!



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec. 2, 2002
    Location
    Berlin, Germany
    Posts
    2,537

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by LexInVA View Post
    IBM has nothing to do with Lenovo products and their support is actually outsourced to other companies though IBM's name is still attached.
    Well, they may have "nothing to do" with Lenovo products, but they attach their name/reputation to Lenovo. Every support call I placed regarding this issue was handled by an IBM employee, and the three different individuals that came out to service the machine before they agreed to replace it identified themselves as "Matt", "Charles", and "Chris" "from IBM" when they arrived at the office door.

    In fact, for kicks, I just listened to a saved voicemail from one of their techs. "Hi, [FFtheEH], This is Charles from IBM calling to confirm your service appointment on _____." Perhaps IBM is outsourcing work to Charles, Matt, and Chris. But they have absolutely no problem putting their name on it front and center.
    Here today, gone tomorrow...



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar. 30, 2007
    Location
    Hollowed out volcano in the South Pacific.
    Posts
    11,233

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FrenchFrytheEqHorse View Post
    Well, they may have "nothing to do" with Lenovo products, but they attach their name/reputation to Lenovo. Every support call I placed regarding this issue was handled by an IBM employee, and the three different individuals that came out to service the machine before they agreed to replace it identified themselves as "Matt", "Charles", and "Chris" "from IBM" when they arrived at the office door.

    In fact, for kicks, I just listened to a saved voicemail from one of their techs. "Hi, [FFtheEH], This is Charles from IBM calling to confirm your service appointment on _____." Perhaps IBM is outsourcing work to Charles, Matt, and Chris. But they have absolutely no problem putting their name on it front and center.
    No, you dealt with a third-party all along the way. The number you called for support goes to a call center staffed and operated by a company owned by Xerox, who owns quite a few support companies. Anyone you see showing up claiming to be an employee of XXX is almost always a random third-party contractor from a work order website like OnForce or a local solution provider who is contracted to represent Blah Blah INC. In reality, it means nothing as far as quality support goes but it's supposed to put you at ease nonetheless when you deal with someone who says "I work for XXX and I'm here to help you!" and they look the part. When you are one of those people, you basically just swap your branded shirt (HP, Dell, Xerox, Whatever) when you go on a call for another brand and if you are a contractor with a third-party support provider, you usually don't get to wear a shirt with the name of a big company on it unless it says "Authorized Solution Provider for XXX" somewhere on it.
    Thus do we growl that our big toes have,
    at this moment, been thrown up from below!



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun. 8, 2012
    Posts
    30

    Default

    Another Asus fan.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun. 8, 2012
    Posts
    30

    Default

    Another Asus fan!



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Oct. 27, 2010
    Location
    Midwest
    Posts
    414

    Default

    Most surge protectors come with a dollar amount that they cover and reimburse you for in the event that the surge protector fails like yours did. The one I have my PC on covers up to $10k I think. You might look into it, or at least, when you replace that surge protector, definitely get one with a clearly stated policy like that.



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