Buying a New Computer

Joined
Feb 10, 2008
Messages
51
Location
Boston MA
Dear Nikon Cafe Members:

After six years I am finally purchasing a new computer.

I am looking at the following specifications on two Dell models:

1) Intel Q9450 Processor (Quad-core 2.66 GHz, 12 MB Cache)
2) 4 GB of 800 MHz memory
3) 500 GB HD or larger
4) 16x CD/DVD Burner and 16x DVD Reader
5) Nvidia 9800GT Graphics Card 512 MB Memory
6) 19 in 1 Media Reader
7) Two Year Warranty
8) Two years of McAfee Internet Security

If I add a 22" widescreen monitor the difference in price is $204. Is it worth the extra $200? I currently have a 19" LCD display (NOT widescreen) and am quite happy. One advantage to the 22" screen is the ability to edit two pages of a word document in actual size.

Please give advice as you see fit.

Thank you,

John
 
Joined
Nov 16, 2005
Messages
3,272
Location
Kentucky
John,

Have you considered keeping your 19" and adding a second 19"? I went dual monitors and highly recommend that setup, regardless of the monitor size...

Edit 2 word documents actual size, and is so handy to compare 2 photos simultaneously...
 
Joined
Feb 10, 2008
Messages
51
Location
Boston MA
I have considered two 19" displays, but does anyone still sell 19" non widescreen displays?

Cheers,

John
 
Joined
Nov 16, 2005
Messages
3,272
Location
Kentucky
I have considered two 19" displays, but does anyone still sell 19" non widescreen displays?

Cheers,

John

Newegg sells both:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&DEPA=0&Description=19%22+monitor&x=0&y=0

Look for 1280 x 1024. Widescreen 19" generally are 1440 x 900.

I do not want to create a war, but have you actually looked at a 24" iMac?

You could eliminate item #8 on your list...

Won't go any further with that thought. Good luck with your selection. You have a good list prepared.
 
Joined
Feb 10, 2008
Messages
51
Location
Boston MA
I also forgot to mention that a stand for dual monitors adds anywhere between $150 to $300 depending on features. Still undecided...
 
Joined
Feb 10, 2008
Messages
51
Location
Boston MA
I decided to keep using my full screen (1280 x 1024) 19" Samsung LCD and spend the money on extra hardware. Overall, I can not complain. For ~$1500 I got the following:

1) Intel Q9450 Processor
2) 4 GB 800 MHz memory
3) 500 GB Harddrive
4) Nvidia 9800 GX2 Graphics card
5) Two year warranty


This seems quite decent for the price.

Cheers,

John
 
Joined
Nov 5, 2007
Messages
2,551
Location
Chester, Virginia, USA
John,

If you ended up with McAfee Internet security, you should dump it. Both McAfee and Norton have become bloated beasts that try to be the security everything and just end up taking tremendous amounts of your valuabale system resources.

You should try NOD32. It does a great job and uses minimal resources.

.. and no I do not sell or have any relations with this company, other than being a very satisfied customer.

:smile:

Don
 
Joined
Feb 10, 2008
Messages
51
Location
Boston MA
Don,

McAfee Internet Security is standard with a two year subscription. I will also try your recommendation especially if I find memory issues.

Thank you,

John
 
Joined
May 12, 2008
Messages
418
Location
DC
Real Name
John
Don,

McAfee Internet Security is standard with a two year subscription. I will also try your recommendation especially if I find memory issues.

Thank you,

John

I would also get rid of McAfee. It barely catches any viruses and hogs tons of resources. You're better off not even running it. NOD32 is much better.
 
Joined
Apr 17, 2006
Messages
1,235
Location
Hong Kong, China
The latest ATi graphic cards are faster than Nvidia. I think you should probably get an 4850 if you play games, otherwise a 3650 will be enugh for photo editing and watching HDTV.

For the card reader, the latest generation can read at 233 - 266x. Please check before you buy. I can't really give you a brand and model number for this because they are probabaly different. In HK the fast readers are about US$12, the slower once are around $8, so it is worthwhile to get the fast one. Don't be misled by the label on the box though, because most of them will quote the USB 2.0 speed and not the actual read speed. Look for something that said "233x" or "266x".

For anti-virus you can use Avest or AVG - they are both free!
 
Joined
Feb 10, 2008
Messages
51
Location
Boston MA
To everyone,

This morning I cancelled the order that I placed with Dell this past weekend. I am amazed that Dell does not offer Vista 64 bit systems on-line, which is the main reason I cancelled.

I am now looking at the following Dell System available locally at Best Buy for only $900!

Dell Inspiron 530 (mini-tower case):

1) Q9300 Processor Quad-Core processor 2.5 GHz
2) 6GB DDR2 667 MHz RAM
3) 750 GB Serial ATA hard drive
4) Windows Home Premium 64-bit
5) ATI Radeon HD2600 XT 256MB Graphics (will probably upgrade to 512 MB)
6) 19-in-1 media reader
7) 8 USB 2.0 Hubs
8) 1-year warranty

IMO it appears to be a lot of computer for very little money. I will remove the modem (to free up a PCI slot) and install an eSATA interface board and I will try to find an inexpensive graphics card to upgrade to 512 MB of graphics memory. I will also install my choice of AV software and Office 2007.
 
Joined
Feb 10, 2008
Messages
51
Location
Boston MA
I have three licenses for Nod32. Best AV product out there by far.

Have you every tried ESET Smart Security software? I am thinking of picking up a boxed version this weekend to install on my new computer.

Thanks,

John
 

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