Question Shopping for a new PC

Jun 26, 2019
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I have been out of the IT industry for 10 years. With that, people regularly ask my opinion on new PCs and other technology. And while I keep my finger on the pulse of the industry, I certainly am not in a place where people can consult with me about much.

Today, I was approached by a friend who asked my opinion on the system link below:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07S3XD24T/ref=cm_sw_r_sms_c_api_i_c72jEbZKAF477

I wasn't impressed.

He uses the PC for email and making Stockmarket trades.

I would like to ask; would someone please point me in the right direction? He's got a $1000.00 budget.

Thank you.
Dom
 

ohio_buckeye

Honorable
Jan 5, 2015
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It's not terrible. Could probably do better.

Maybe something like this.

https://www.bestbuy.com/site/hp-envy-desktop-intel-core-i7-16gb-memory-512gb-solid-state-drive-nightfall-black/6366132.p?skuId=6366132

If you really want a value proposition and feel like helping him out. I bought a system from work for 50 dollars a while back that they were going to get rid of. It was a Dell optiplex from about 2013/14 with an i7 3770.

I ended up upgrading the ram to 16gb, replaced the power supply with a 600 watt EVGA I had that was spare. Power supply is vast overkill for that system, but I figure it shouldn't go out soon.

The other thing I did was install a 480gb SSD drive. You can pick those up got as little as 50 bucks.

That system, I put in my wife's home office, and it flies. I don't think it would have any problem taking a mid range graphics card and gaming even. But for her checking email and doing online business, it's great. Starts up in about 30 seconds. Loads quick, runs better than a lot of new ones. Specs are pretty much the same as the hp above.

Personal preference, if you can find a Dell with similar specs for similar money, I'm more of a Dell guy. We use a lot of their optiplex systems at work, business class you know that I'm sure. But we rarely have issues with them. The inspirons and their home based systems may be a different story.
 
Reactions: Dom46
Jun 26, 2019
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Thank you for the response; it has given me a starting point.

I like the Dell Optiplex systems. Always have.

He currently has a Lenovo desktop that is having storage capacity issues. Beyond that, it functions fine. I'm trying to convince him just to do an upgrade to an 1TB SSD (I was thinking the Samsung EVO. Thoughts?).

But it is a 10 year old machine and I think he just has a bug to buy a new toy.

I like the option you've suggested.

I have a an HP 580T from 2011 that runs like a top. If he's make the investment, he's have it for 10 years too.

Again, thank you for the quick reply.

Dom
 

ohio_buckeye

Honorable
Jan 5, 2015
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NVME drives are great. I have a 250gb Samsung 960(I think) Evo in my desktop at home. Fast. Boots in 20-30 seconds.

Honestly, his system if he's just using it for email, web browsing etc, if it has an i7, clean it out, bump to 16gb ram, toss in an SSD and I'd say swap the power supply to be safe and be happy. I would also consider the AMD ryzen systems for low cost options. For example, a 200 dollar ryzen 3600x according to benchmarks runs with an i7 8700k. So gives an idea how strong they are.

Dell optiplex systems at work, we usually only pull them because they are due for upgrade to a new system. Almost never because they aren't working. We usually reformat them and sell them. If I see another good deal on an i7, I might grab one for a backup in case my wife's system dies some day. For 50 bucks, hard to beat.
 
Jun 26, 2019
24
1
15
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NVME drives are great. I have a 250gb Samsung 960(I think) Evo in my desktop at home. Fast. Boots in 20-30 seconds.

Honestly, his system if he's just using it for email, web browsing etc, if it has an i7, clean it out, bump to 16gb ram, toss in an SSD and I'd say swap the power supply to be safe and be happy. I would also consider the AMD ryzen systems for low cost options. For example, a 200 dollar ryzen 3600x according to benchmarks runs with an i7 8700k. So gives an idea how strong they are.

Dell optiplex systems at work, we usually only pull them because they are due for upgrade to a new system. Almost never because they aren't working. We usually reformat them and sell them. If I see another good deal on an i7, I might grab one for a backup in case my wife's system dies some day. For 50 bucks, hard to beat.
It is a Lenovo desktop... about 10 years old. If it was generic, I would think it would be easy to swap out the power supply. I have to do some research; see how much ram it will support, how large a hard drive it will support.

I'm waiting on a reply from him. I'll keep you posted.

Thank you again.

Dom
 
Jun 26, 2019
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So he's decided to go with an upgrade.

It has an i7 processor. It will support 16GB ram and up to a 1TB HD.

So I'm going to upgrade it to 16GB and put in a 1TB SSD.

I'm going to have to copy an image of the 160GB drive currently installed over to the 1TB. Can you recommend a utility to do this?
 

ohio_buckeye

Honorable
Jan 5, 2015
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There are a few. I believe a free one is aomei backupper. I think they have a utility that will just allow you to install on his system, and then you hook up his SSD as a secondary drive. Simply tell the software to copy the old disk to the other. If all goes well it should complete.

At that point, you should be able to unhook his original drive, and it theoretically will boot from the new drive. You would then need to go disk management and expand the newer drive's partition to see all of the space.

I believe that is free for home use, another that I can think of is easeuse Todo backup that is similar. But I think again it's free for home use.
 
Dec 31, 2019
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If you really want a value proposition and feel like helping him out. I bought a system from work for 50 dollars a while back that they were going to get rid of. It was a Dell optiplex from about 2013/14 with an i7 3770.

I ended up upgrading the ram to 16gb, replaced the power supply with a 600 watt EVGA I had that was spare. Power supply is vast overkill for that system, but I figure it shouldn't go out soon.

The other thing I did was install a 480gb SSD drive. You can pick those up got as little as 50 bucks.

That system, I put in my wife's home office, and it flies. I don't think it would have any problem taking a mid range graphics card and gaming even. But for her checking email and doing online business, it's great. Starts up in about 30 seconds. Loads quick, runs better than a lot of new ones. Specs are pretty much the same as the hp above.

Personal preference, if you can find a Dell with similar specs for similar money, I'm more of a Dell guy. We use a lot of their optiplex systems at work, business class you know that I'm sure. But we rarely have issues with them. The inspirons and their home based systems may be a different story.
I'm typing this on a Dell Optiplex 3020 SFF in which I upgraded to have 16GB of RAM (from 4GB of RAM) and a 1TB Samsung 860 EVO SSD (from a 7200 RPM HDD).

TL;DR: Get a Dell Optiplex 3020 SFF. It sounds like it'll work great for your friend! :)
 
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