Getting a PC... still quite undecided

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I've listed my eMac on ebay, and once it's been sold I'll be looking at getting a new PC. I like the Dell Dimension 2400, in every way except for the lack of an AGP slot. Are there still PCI graphics cards available for PCs? I only need this for light graphics work, maybe a few basic 3D games, but the Intel Extreme stuff just isn't going to cut it. What I want this computer to do is be a multimedia centre; I'm buying a TV tuner card straight away, and if I do get the Dell, it's coming with the 3-piece h/k speakers.
So what should I do? Ditch the Dell idea and buy a Compaq? If I go that way I'll get nVidia GeForce graphics, but no monitor(at the same price or higher) or speakers, and I won't be ably to afford the TV card(needed).

...HELP!

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olikicksmacs's picture
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Joined: Dec 20 2003
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Traitor!

I know!

Ditch the PC ideas and keep the eMac!

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iMac Tangerine G3 600mhz (Gary), Dell Inspiron 6000 (Delila)

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ugh

Trust me, after what I've been through with quality problems and warranty service issues... I dont even know if the computer after the PC WILL be a Mac... unless of course I can afford to buy a G5 by then. Smile

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why not build your own? ... t

why not build your own? ... that way you get the best specs for your needs ... but you should try to get a AGP slot ... PCI graphics sort of suck!!

TOM

Dr. Webster's picture
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DO NOT buy a Compaq, or an HP

DO NOT buy a Compaq, or an HP for that matter. If you're not going to build your own machine, a Dell is a great choice. If the lack of AGP is a problem for you, look at the Dimension 4600...it's not much more expensive than the 2400 (which is a great machine in its own right; I bought my GF one).

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Eudimorphodon's picture
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Other Dells

The "Intel Extreme" graphics in the 2400 will probably manage to be faster then most PCI graphics cards, at least in 2D, but that aside...

Depending on your budget it might be worth looking at the Optiplex GX270. If you play with configurations you might be able to get a stripped one and then pump it up with third-party parts later. (Dell really gouges on things like RAM.)

(I like the GX270. We buy these at work, and they're quality boxes. The really nice thing about them is they're *much* quieter in terms of fan noise then a generic or homebuilt box.)

It's also worth checking the "Dell Outlet" for refurbs. Just checking... they have a GX270 with a P4/2800 for $494, for example. It's the "small desktop" case, which only accepts a half-height AGP card, but you get the idea. They have Dimension 4600s for about the same price, which are the mostly-equivilent consumer-grade box.

(Like... $479.00 for a 2.8Ghz minitower with DVD, Soundblaster Live, and a 64MB GeForce card.)

The box under my desk at work is a Dimension 4500, an older relation, and it's a perfectly grand machine. If I'm ever in the mood to get a new desktop at home it's probably going to be a Dell instead of another loud & annoying homebuilt.

(I never use my Athlon anymore for anything but games, 'cause I can't stand the fan noise. And that's *with* expensive thermostatically controlled fans and whatnot that I bought in a vain attempt to shut it up. I could try watercooling, I suppose, but... life is too short.)

--Peace

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Hrmm

I'm afraid I just can't quite afford the Dimension 4600... right now I'm stuck with what money I get for my eMac.

I spent a few hours online looking around at other deals last night, and I'm definitely going with the Dell 2400. Anyone know if these have standard(ATX?) motherboards in them which can eventually be replaced?

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Re: Hrmm

word03 wrote:

I'm afraid I just can't quite afford the Dimension 4600... right now I'm stuck with what money I get for my eMac.

Like I said, look on the "Dell Outlet". (Go into "Home Office", and then click it under "Shopping Alternatives".) You'll be able to get a refurb *something* for less then a 2400. If a refurb 4600 is out of the question, then look at the 4500/4550.

I can't imagine an eMac going for much less then $400 or so on eBay, and that's only $80 less then the bottom of the line P4 4600s are going for. It's worth selling pencils for that $80. Or if worse comes to worse, get a Celeron one. The P4 Celeron is actually a lot of CPU for the money. Or buy a 4600 without a video card. In addition to the AGP slot they have the Intel Extreme onboard, and you can always add an AGP card later.

Quote:

I spent a few hours online looking around at other deals last night, and I'm definitely going with the Dell 2400. Anyone know if these have standard(ATX?) motherboards in them which can eventually be replaced?

Nope. The Dell machines use something *similar* to mATX, but enough different that it'd take substantial hackery to put something generic to it. Doing so would also destroy the nice Dell cooling system, which is really dependent on the exact layout of the CPU on the motherboard.

--Peace

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Re: Other Dells

Eudimorphodon wrote:

The box under my desk at work is a Dimension 4500, an older relation, and it's a perfectly grand machine.

I own a Dimension 4500 myself, a 2.4GHz P4 model, and it's been a great machine. Rock-solid, built well, and quite expandable. About a year ago I replaced the DVD-ROM drive with a DVD burner, and have 512MB RAM and 120GB and 200GB hard drives...runs very quietly. My next machine will definitely be a Dell.

I agree with Eudi--take a look at the refurbs. The 2400s are nice machines, having purchased and thoroughly examined one myself, but if you're looking for great expandibility I'd look at a refurb 4600. You can do pretty well with an Optiplex, but, as Eudi said, you'd have to buy a basic model and upgrade it yourself. I'd stick with the Dimension line if I were you.

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refurbs

I don't believe we can get Dell refurbs in Australia...

Anyway I worked out a few things; 1. I'm not a gamer. 2. I don't play many games. 3. If I do ever play games, they're things like Driver and Age of Empires, so a 2.66GHz Celeron and Intel Extreme graphics will be more than enough.

Looks like I'm getting an AU$900 computer, and I must say, I'm a little scared... but given Dell's current reputation, should I really be worried?

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yes you should be worried i h

yes you should be worried i have never seen a dell that didnt have atleast one major flaw. Beign the network admin at my school and the computer tech i know for a fact that dells (especially refurbs) are un reliable just my 2 cents

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Dell customer service

Well today I got a call from Dell to confirm my order, and I must say, I'm impressed! The sales rep I was dealing with was extremely helpful and professional-sounding and got everything fixed up very quickly. Even made a few suggestions on saving some money(which I didnt need anyway...).

So far, so good. Smile

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Acer?

Does anyone here know if Acer products are any good or just rubbish? Their Aspire T310 has a few more features then the Dell at the same price, and has an 8x AGP slot. For now I'm staying with Dell, but still...

martakz's picture
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Try asking a pc forum? Im su

Try asking a pc forum? Im sure someone there uses an acer?

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boby_dg's picture
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Hi, the only think I'll tel

Hi,
the only think I'll tell you is that I don't like brand computers - they are expensive and in the most ways they are built using propietery components and when somethign brokes you must bye it from the manifacturer on cosmic prise Sad .All my computers at home are assembled by me.If you can't do it you can order a computer build by components chosen from you in every shop (at liest here in Bulgaria is like this).

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PC forum? Naahhh... too full

PC forum? Naahhh... too full of Mac-bashers. Tongue

Jon's picture
Jon
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IIRC Acer OEM builds many mac

IIRC Acer OEM builds many machines for other name brands. A stat that I barely rememebr is something like 45% of all laptops from Taiwan are built by Acer, no matter whose name is printed on the label.

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Cruller's picture
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.

So...
Dude! You're gettin' a Dell! Tongue
I personally have used a dimension 2400, and they're not too bad. A bit noisy, but not so bad that you couldn't sleep in a room with one running. Besides, nothing could be as bad as my HP Pavilion 7840, which runs a 60mm delta atop a pathetic-sized HS on its Celeron 766, not to mention a whiny WD HDD.

There are still several people making powerful PCI graphics cards. I have seen several Radeon 9200 PCIs and a few GF-FX 5200 PCIs. I've also heard of (but not seen) higher models. PCI Video cards, however, cost quite a bit more than their AGP counterparts. The law of supply and demand at work.
Intel onboard (hardly extreme) graphics is about on par with a GeForce 2 MX, depending on which chipset you're talking about.

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chipset...

Intel 845GV. That what you were thinking of? I always thought it'd be about equal to a Rage 128...

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Acer

I heard that Acer's computers are of low quality at least during the last century. Not sure if they've improved or not. I don't particularly care for Dell's either because of their proprietaryness, (if thats a word) but I haven't heard too many other bad things about them anyway. Good Luck.