lithodora

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This is the best category I could find to fit my needs, so here goes:

The company I was recently working for closed its doors and let all of us go. Bad luck.
As part of our severance package they offered us $500 toward the purchase of a new computer.

(The computer I'm currently using is a build I had done back in 2001. Dated, but still does everything I expect of it.) I got to work immediately picking out parts and building a new die-hard machine. I had everything all laid out and had a price just around $1000. Tax refunds would allow me to chip in the extra and I was recycling an old case, monitor and stuff like that to cut the costs....
(I have decided that using my Sony Trinitron VGA monitor on the new system is a waste and I need an upgrade in that area. )

One the last day of work we had 'exit interviews.' I presented my plan to the 'firing folks' who looked rather confused by what I was showing them. They gave me this :non: and said I had to BUY a computer pre-built from Dell or another major brand. :(

Ok, so that's the story so far.... (thanks for following along)

I'm at Dell.com thinking I'm being a bit ripped off by the pricing, but at least it *should* work when I get the system out of the box right?

Question: Vista 32 vs. Vista 64?
Should I really consider getting the 64bit OS? I understand I am going to have severe issues getting the software I already have working.

I'm looking to go cheap here so I'm looking at the Inspirion 530...
Lets look at some of the systems:

System 1
Current Price: $1,004 from Dell (Total cost to $1,154, see below for additions...)
Code:
PROCESSOR             Intel® Core™2 Quad processor Q8200 (4MB L2, 2.33GHz, 1333FSB)	
OPERATING SYSTEM     Genuine Windows Vista® Home Premium Edition SP1, 64-Bit	
MONITOR               Dell S2409W 24" Full HD Widescreen Flat Panel Monitor	
MEMORY                4GB Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 800MHz- 4DIMMs	
HARD DRIVE	       500GB Serial ATA Hard Drive (7200RPM) w/DataBurst Cache™	
OPTICAL DRIVE         2 Drives: 16x DVD-ROM Drive + 16x DVD+/-RW w/ dl write capable	
VIDEO CARD	       Integrated Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 3100
SOUND                Integrated 7.1 Channel Audio
TV TUNER AND REMOTE   Hauppauge HVR1250 hybrid TV Tuner with Remote Control

Quick note about the TV tuner..they are charging $60 for it and that is what I seem to find online. I use my computer as my television currently and I do not own a TV. I would not like to give up TV, but I have another option coming up. ;)

Question : Video Cards:
Note that I would need to add that to the price of the system above. Bringing the cost to $1,154.
They offer several options for video card on of the best being:
Radeon ATI HD 2600 XT for $150 Which would make good use of the new monitor.

I have found an Nvidia EVGA 512-P3-N879-AR GeForce 9800 GTX + 512 MB DDR3 for $149 after rebate

Any one have an opinion on which way I should go with it?



Note: this next system build lists the previous monitor as: Dell S2409W 24" Full HD Widescreen Flat Panel Monitor [add $340]. I feel I have an answer to that...

System 2
$674 From Dell (total price to $1,124)
Code:
PROCESSOR      Intel® Core™2 Quad processor Q8200 (4MB L2, 2.33GHz, 1333FSB)
OPERATING SYSTEM     Genuine Windows Vista® Home Basic Service Pack 1
MONITOR              No Monitor
MEMORY              4GB Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 800MHz- 4DIMMs
HARD DRIVE           500GB Serial ATA Hard Drive (7200RPM) w/DataBurst Cache™
OPTICAL DRIVE        2Drives: 16x DVD-ROM Drive + 16x DVD+/-RW w/ dl write capable	
VIDEO CARD	        Integrated Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 3100
SOUND                Integrated 7.1 Channel Audio

With this option I would go with the nVidia card mentioned above bringing my price to $824 (so far). I would then get:
AOC Envision 24'' Class Full-HD 1080p HDTV/Computer Monitor, L24H898 for $298.00.
Look at all the inputs! a DVI to HDMI adapter would be preferable to DVI to VGA. I wouldn't be giving up tv this way and get the HD the previous option gave me.

Bringing my total price to $1,124.


Finally... I could always go with this:
Code:
Studio XPS 	Studio XPS featuring Core i7 processors
Operating System 	Genuine Windows Vista® Home Premium Edition SP1, 64-Bit
Processors 	Intel® Core™i7-920 Processor(8MB L2 Cache, 2.66GHz)
Memory 	6GB Tri-Channel DDR3 SDRAM at 1066MHz - 6 DIMMs
Monitor 	No Monitor
Video Card 	ATI Radeon HD 3650 256MB
Hard Drives 	500GB - 7200RPM, SATA 3.0Gb/s, 16MB Cache
Network Card 	Integrated 10/1000 Ethernet
Optical Drives 	Single Drive: 16X CD/DVD burner (DVD+/-RW) w/double layer write capability
Sound Card 	Integrated 7.1 Channel Audio
TV Tuner 	Hauppauge HVR1250 hybrid TV Tuner with Remote Control
Sub total:$1,009.00
I would have to use my current monitor though...

Oh, what I want to use this for.. I need to be able to run Adobe CS4 suite without a problem. I also want to play games that are newer than 2005, which my current system won't do.

Any help will be appreciated.
 
This may be your best option from Dell:
Studio Desktop-C2D E7300-2GB DDR2 800RAM-500GB HDD-1 DVD Burner-No TV tuner-Vista for $549.
It has the larger 350w power supply with a PCI-e power connector.

Acer H233Hbmid 23" 5ms HDMI HD 1080P LCD Monitor with speakers @ $240 with free shipping from NewEgg
- or Acer X223Wbd 22" Widescreen LCD Monitor $170 and free shipping (you might need PC speakers)
Hauppauge WinTV HVR-1250 Hybrid Video Recorder w/Remote $50
SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 4830 512MB $95
mushkin 4GB DDR2 800 $40 (optional future upgrade)

HP may have better choices and prices.

 

lithodora

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Feb 7, 2009
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Only other suggestion is to use it as a voucher and buy something for someone already going to use Dell....give em a few dollars off and you got a cash exchange which you can spend on what you want.

I don't know why I didn't think of this sooner: My g/f is buying a laptop at Office Depot. That qualifies for the company to pay the $500. Which would leave me free and clear to build my own system.


Now I just need to figure out what to build for less than $1200....