Buying advice – Dell PC

allisonv7

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jul 20, 2004
426
1
Hey folks,

My parents are in the market for a new computer and want a Dell PC. Being in the Mac world for awhile now I haven't really kept up with PC hardware. Can anyone make any recommendations? They'll be using it for the basics, MS Office, Internet Browsing, Instant Messaging, their house is also on a wireless network. I would like to get them a quality computer that will last a few years, not just something that will meet their minimum requirements, I'm hoping this can be done for $500-$1000.

I assume Dell is a good brand to go with, but if anyone knows of a better option , PC-wise, I'm open to suggestions.

Thanks for you help :)


allison.
 

madoka

macrumors 6502
Jul 17, 2002
488
108
allisonv7 said:
Hey folks,

My parents are in the market for a new computer and want a Dell PC. Being in the Mac world for awhile now I haven't really kept up with PC hardware. Can anyone make any recommendations? They'll be using it for the basics, MS Office, Internet Browsing, Instant Messaging, their house is also on a wireless network. I would like to get them a quality computer that will last a few years, not just something that will meet their minimum requirements, I'm hoping this can be done for $500-$1000.
Dell is offering a SMOKING deal right now. 24" LCD monitor (FP2405) with a DUAL CORE P4 (9100) for less than $1K. Yeah, you heard me right. Less than $1,000. I've had an Apple computer since my IIe days, but Apple will never, EVER have pricing like this.
 

TheMonarch

macrumors 65816
May 6, 2005
1,467
1
Bay Area
madoka said:
Dell is offering a SMOKING deal right now. 24" LCD monitor (FP2405) with a DUAL CORE P4 (9100) for less than $1K. Yeah, you heard me right. Less than $1,000. I've had an Apple computer since my IIe days, but Apple will never, EVER have pricing like this.


WHERE?!!! :eek:
 

ibook30

macrumors 6502a
Jun 4, 2005
815
3
2,000 light years from home
madoka said:
Dell is offering a SMOKING deal right now. .

Where there is smoke there is death from inhalation....
Careful with the Dell - I don't consider them a good brand ( I own one! ). "Decent" might be a good word... I got a deal with a great processor,, but all the other components are garbage. I had a friend explain this to me so I can't offer details. I have plenty of RAM and have tweaked settings on the OS- but continue to get sub par performance.
 

plinden

macrumors 68040
Apr 8, 2004
3,968
3
I wouldn't go for the cheapest Dell 2400 - it's a 2.4 GHz Celeron, with a maximum of 256MB RAM (it's not upgradeable). My four year Dell (1.8GHz, 1GB RAM) would run better (that fscker just won't die and let me replace it with a Mac).

If you must get a Dell, go for the cheapest of the next cheapest model, the 3000. It's $549 with rebates, for a 2.8GHz P4 and 256 MB, compared to $379 for the 2400 - the extra $170 is worth it, since you can upgrade it if you need you. If I were buying it, I would add $40 for the 3GHz P4, $40 for 512 MB RAM and $30 for the combo drive. Hmm, as always, Dell's price goes up as you configure something useable. At least, get more than 256MB RAM - it'll need it.

Don't worry about a wireless card, you can add that later for peanuts if you want to.

Edit: if you're able to spend up to $1000, you can get one with pretty good specs. It might be better to do that even if they're not going to use all the power. In a couple of years, when it dies clogged with viruses and spyware, you can take it over and make it into a nice Linux server.
 

chucknorris

macrumors 6502a
Jun 28, 2005
559
0
Moscow, ID (No Kremlin here!)
I tend to think that dell is the best for clueless (in a relative sense, of course) users who just want something to get them on the internet, do word processing, etc.

For somebody like me, HP or Sony are more appropriate. They offer features like dedicated graphics cards, large hard drives, Firewire connectivity, etc. on their entry-level (or one step up from entry-level) models.
 

chucknorris

macrumors 6502a
Jun 28, 2005
559
0
Moscow, ID (No Kremlin here!)
mojohanna said:
Can't talk them into a Mac huh? Seems a shame for what they want to do.
My thoughts exactly.

A mini along with a cheap monitor, mouse, and keyboard would be more than enough. They'd get by just fine with a used eMac or G4 iMac too.

In my experience, once you get a user like the one described above used to OS X, they are absolutely awed with the ease of use.
 

FFTT

macrumors 68030
Apr 17, 2004
2,952
0
A Stoned Throw From Ground Zero
Many professionals can barely keep pace with Windows security and maintenance issues on a protected network. At home it's a landmine.

How much time are you willing to devote to de-bugging their Dell system?

When considering what your parents want a computer to do for them,
they should REALLY be getting a Mac mini loaded with 1 GB RAM. or an iMac G5 2.0.

By the time you add security software and any good applications
you're spending more for that "affordabe" Dell than you might think.

If you really want your parents to enjoy their computer experience
I'd seriously recommend OSX running on the iMac G5 2.0 GHz 17"
model. G5 64 bit processing, standard 7200 RPM HD, 128MB VRAM
and a very pleasing built in display, make it a bargain.

The truly usable software included in OSX with the iLIfe suite
and Microsoft Office 2004 for Mac and they'd be set.

The mini would also be fine if you already have or plan to buy a stand alone display.
The mini's only limitation is when you consider more demanding video performance.

A $1000 Dell might be an O.K. piece of hardware, but Windows really puts a unnecessary burden on people's time and patience.

Take your parents to a well stocked AppleStore and let them see for themselves.
 

Chrispy

macrumors 68020
Dec 27, 2004
2,126
1
Indiana
ibook30 said:
Where there is smoke there is death from inhalation....
Careful with the Dell - I don't consider them a good brand ( I own one! ). "Decent" might be a good word... I got a deal with a great processor,, but all the other components are garbage. I had a friend explain this to me so I can't offer details. I have plenty of RAM and have tweaked settings on the OS- but continue to get sub par performance.
It really depends on which Dell you buy. I find that most of the components in my Dell system are name brand (Intel, ATI, Philips, Samsung and Toshiba). If you buy the cheap 2400 or 3000 then you get what you pay for. If you shell out for a 5100, 9100 or XPS you get nice components. As far as notebooks go, the latitude line uses such high end internals that Dell includes a 3 year warranty for free.
 

rmhop81

macrumors 68020
Apr 4, 2005
2,248
97
Dallas, TX
ibook30 said:
Where there is smoke there is death from inhalation....
Careful with the Dell - I don't consider them a good brand ( I own one! ). "Decent" might be a good word... I got a deal with a great processor,, but all the other components are garbage. I had a friend explain this to me so I can't offer details. I have plenty of RAM and have tweaked settings on the OS- but continue to get sub par performance.
haha they use all the name brands that all the other companies use. I guess apple has the same crappy 20.1inch widescreen that dell has then, since it's the exact same screen!
 

Mac_Freak

macrumors 6502a
Apr 22, 2005
713
0
rmhop81 said:
haha they use all the name brands that all the other companies use. I guess apple has the same crappy 20.1inch widescreen that dell has then, since it's the exact same screen!
It is only the LCD panel that is the same, the backlight and electronics are totally different. Just to be more exact. :)
 

FFTT

macrumors 68030
Apr 17, 2004
2,952
0
A Stoned Throw From Ground Zero
I really like the new Dell 20" and 24" displays, but I wouldn't get anyone I cared about a machine running windows.

There is some fantastic new hardware out there in AMD and Intel but
older folks really don't need the aggravation of running Windows.

You can buy a high performance Chevy V8 for less than a 6 cylinder Toyota
but which one would you put your money on to still be trouble free 4 years
down the road?

Within 24 month those lower end p/c's may also not be able to run Windows
Vista without certain upgrades. And then what about re buying all your software too.

I'm doing my best to give you good advice
 

zap2

macrumors 604
Mar 8, 2005
7,241
1
Washington D.C
WHY DO THEY WANT A DELL??

get the 599 mac mini and use they old screen mouse and keyboard for the Mini and buy them MS office that would be like 700 tops!!
 

madoka

macrumors 6502
Jul 17, 2002
488
108
madoka said:
Dell is offering a SMOKING deal right now. 24" LCD monitor (FP2405) with a DUAL CORE P4 (9100) for less than $1K. Yeah, you heard me right. Less than $1,000. I've had an Apple computer since my IIe days, but Apple will never, EVER have pricing like this.
Well, I had my order ship for the 24" LCD FP2405 and a Dell 9100 (Dual core 2.8ghz, 1gb memory, 250gig SATA HD, etc.) for $850. Seriously, the BEST price I've ever seen on the 2405 is $780, which means Dell is just giving away this $1200 (retail) computer. Although I agree that Dells are generally crappy, I actually bought this for the parts. The processor alone is $350.

I know she posted buying a Dell in a mac forum, so it's no great surprise that people would tell her folks to switch, but there maybe reasons why they want to go Dell. If you reformat the HD with just the base OS and apps you intend to use, then Dells are fine for what her folks want. I went through the same process with my parents and they insisted on a PC since their computer classes used PCs and macs wouldn't help them learn at home.
 

KittenKrusher

macrumors regular
Jul 24, 2005
144
0
What modoka said. Once you get the Dell, just blank out the HD and put the base OS on it and do what you want from there. When you first get the comp from Dell, there will be a **** load of Apps that you probably don't want on it.
 

jblodgett

macrumors regular
Jun 30, 2005
102
0
madoka said:
Well, I had my order ship for the 24" LCD FP2405 and a Dell 9100 (Dual core 2.8ghz, 1gb memory, 250gig SATA HD, etc.) for $850. Seriously, the BEST price I've ever seen on the 2405 is $780, which means Dell is just giving away this $1200 (retail) computer. Although I agree that Dells are generally crappy, I actually bought this for the parts. The processor alone is $350.

I know she posted buying a Dell in a mac forum, so it's no great surprise that people would tell her folks to switch, but there maybe reasons why they want to go Dell. If you reformat the HD with just the base OS and apps you intend to use, then Dells are fine for what her folks want. I went through the same process with my parents and they insisted on a PC since their computer classes used PCs and macs wouldn't help them learn at home.

Now where, exactly did you see this?

I just took a gander at Dell's website and the cheapest 9100 they had came with a 17 inch monitor and sold for $899.
 

madoka

macrumors 6502
Jul 17, 2002
488
108
jblodgett said:
Now where, exactly did you see this?

I just took a gander at Dell's website and the cheapest 9100 they had came with a 17 inch monitor and sold for $899.
Dell. You have to know how their system works and have certain codes.
 

plinden

macrumors 68040
Apr 8, 2004
3,968
3
NFernoSlyr said:
Maybe be you would like to share this info?
I'd like to get that deal for the 24 incher!! :D


-NFerno
This is an email I got from xpbargains at the w/e. I tried this out, and it didn't work for me.
Dell Home: Dimension 9100 desktop 2.8GHz-D 160GB + 24in LCD $990

Hurry it will not last. Dell Home has a hot desktop deal.

Dell Dimension 9100 Desktop w/ Pentium-D 820 Dual Core 2.8GHz 800FSB, Dell UltraSharp 2405FP 24" LCD, 512MB DDR, 160GB Serial ATA w/DataBurst cache, CDRW + 2nd bay DVD, Dolby Digital 7.1 Audio, Radeon X300 SE 128MB Video, 56k/NIC, Windows XP Media Center 2005 Edition for only $990.

continue and add to cart. Do NOT at add any upgrades (including LCD). On the shopping cart page, find "Great Addons" in the right column, there is an add to cart button for LCD. Click on it multiple times until that option is gone. You'll get a 24" LCD! final price is $990. The LCD alone costs this much!
 

javiercr

macrumors 6502
Apr 12, 2005
419
0
London
zap2 said:
yes!! :D :p


http://dellrumors.com/

and they talk about dell releasing a PPC high end dell wow!! it would run windows

they also talk about Mr. Dell wanting vista on his dell computers, i never thought of anything other then tha0t
Oh wow, that site is funny :) It must belong to a member of macrumors, come on come on who are you? :rolleyes:
 
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