What to tell friends who are buying new computer?

wyatt23

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 7, 2006
541
0
Forest Hills, NY
I have a friend whose little brother is buying a computer and asked me for my advice. she doesn't like macs. ask her why: "she just doesnt". that's fine (but also lame).

her and her family know nothing about computers nor about shopping online, so they don't know what to buy or where to buy it. they just know that they don't want an apple. i told them they should get anything with intel c2d, 1gb ram MIN, 120GB, wireless-n, and 10/100/1000 ethernet.

i recommended lenovo and alienware for them to buy. Her brother isn't good with computers and doesn't want to learn mac. i tried to explain, if you don't know windows well, you're going to have to re-learn windows vista. still doesn't want an apple.

i explained, even if you don't buy an apple, please buy online. they are going to best buy. (i've read MANY a horror story).

does anyone encounter similar situations from family and friends that ask for educated opinions but completely disregard it?

and. What should i be telling people to get once they turn down apple? (and trust me. they are stubborn and cannot be convinced to buy one. i even offered to test drive my macbook for the weekend)
 

BornAgainMac

macrumors 603
Feb 4, 2004
6,373
3,242
Florida Resident
Two separate approaches then. Have them look at Alienware. A high-end configuration. Or have them look at eMachines. Something with Vista Basic loaded on it with 512 MB of memory. If they get Alienware, they will notice your Mac is just as fast but for a lot less and wish they got a Mac. If they get a basic limited system, they will hate how much faster your Apple is for just a little bit more money. Or perhaps they go with a mid-range machine, they will notice how much better Apple is compared to their system anyways.

Remember to have them grab Norton Utilities, Microsoft Live Care, and Adware Pro to keep their PC in top shape.
 

risc

macrumors 68030
Jul 23, 2004
2,756
0
Melbourne, Australia
Who really cares? I have plenty of friends who would never buy Apple computers. Why? They want to play Windows games and Apple don't have a decent gaming video card in any of their machines. Seriously who is really going to buy a Mac Pro with a X1900 XT for gaming? It's over priced, and the graphics card is a joke.

What do I tell them? I just point them at Alienware or a cloneware computer shop.
 

sw1tcher

macrumors 68000
Jan 6, 2004
1,589
1,838
I've never had problems making recommendations to family members or friends because I listen to what their needs are and what they want.

Here's what you're doing:

Them: Can you recommend a good PC for us?
You: Get an Apple
Them: But we want a PC.
You: Just get an Apple.
Them: Umm.... we don't like Apple's. We want a PC.
You: Get an Apple. I'll even let you test drive my MacBook.

It seems like you're making a recommendation based on what you like and not one based on their needs or wants. If you tried telling them about Macs and they said no, just leave it at that and recommend a PC if you can. If you can't, then tell them so and that'll be the end of it.

But anyways, I take it they're looking for a notebook PC since you mentioned wireless N?

If so, I'd recommend

1. IBM (Lenovo) Thinkpad
2. HP
3. Dell
4. Toshiba
5. Sony

I'd stay away from Gateway. I've heard and seen too many issues with their build quality (I'm a PC tech). They seem to overheat and the motherboard dies and ends up needing to be replaced. As for Acer, I don't really care for them. But they're a good bang for the price.

Ordering a Dell would have to be done online or over the phone. Pretty much the same thing for the Thinkpad.

As for HP, Toshiba, and Sony, you'll usually find better deals in a physical store (B&M) than on the Internet. Have them check out places like Best Buy, Circuit City, Staples, Office Depot, etc. Since it's back-to-school season, they should be able to find some pretty good deals, but some may require rebates.

If they're looking for the best bang for the buck, then go with Dell. They've been having some really great deals off and on lately for the back-to-school crowd.

I'd personally stay away from Lenovo unless it's a Thinkpad. As for Alienware, they're overpriced and really no better than HP, Dell, or ThinkPads. Actually, if they're looking for something with a very good build quality, go with the Thinkpad. End of story.

As for the specs you recommended, what are they going to be using the computer for? If it's just basic web surfing, email, IM-ing, papers/school work, downloading music, etc., then they really don't need to limit their selection to just the Intel C2D's. Intel's Core Duo, their Pentium dual core, and AMD's Turion x2 line will be able to handle those things with no problem. As for RAM, definitely at leat 1GB for Windows Vista; 2GB recommended.
 

sw1tcher

macrumors 68000
Jan 6, 2004
1,589
1,838
Remember to have them grab Norton Utilities, Microsoft Live Care, and Adware Pro to keep their PC in top shape.
I'll agree on the Norton Utilities and to some extent AdAware Pro. I prefer Webroot's SpySweeper or Spyware Doctor. But MS Live OneCare? You have got to be kidding. That came in dead last in the lastest PC World tests. A better solution would be Kaspersky Internet Security or even NOD32.
 

ChrisA

macrumors G4
Jan 5, 2006
11,602
404
Redondo Beach, California
I have a friend whose little brother is buying a computer and asked me for my advice. she doesn't like macs. ask her why: "she just doesnt". that's fine (but also lame).
Until Apple offers a mid-range upgradeable mini-tower sized machine for about $1,000 I really can't recommend a mac of most people. There is no "mainstream design" Mac. Hopefully Apple is working on this.

Also the Mac is not the best for games and that is what most people do with their PC. The Mac is great if you want to run Final Cut or iPhoto or whatever but let's face it, how many people are seriously into Photography or video post production? If not any el-cheapo box can run Firefox.

I could recommend running Ubuntu on generic PC. For many people this is ideal. It's prety much Mac-like and has the stability and lack of virus problem of a Mac but runs on main stream hardware that people can afford and upgrade.

I'm on a computer 12 hours a day, I use Mac OS X, Linux and Solaris. The Ma''c only advantage is that it can run iLife, FCE and Photoshop and theothers can't. Other than that they are close enough.
 

blueicedj

macrumors 6502
Jul 11, 2007
271
1
Don't ever recommend Norton...It's terrible software that will slow the computer down like crazy. Zonealarm is awesome, you can pay for it and get a spyware/adware remover, or just get the firewall for free, which you can download on the internet. I'd just download it for free then get Avast! antivirus, which is also free. Get ad-aware as well, which is free for download, but will not take care of live threats unless you buy it. Download Spybot Search and Destroy for this, which is also free. So instead of buying Norton which will slow down your computer A lot and is very intrusive, just download these free products.
 

The General

macrumors 601
Jul 7, 2006
4,826
1
When someone askes me what kind of computer they should buy, I say "You should buy a Mac." If they respond with the usual slew of nonsense about not liking Macs for no reason, I tell them "good luck" and walk off.

I've tried recommending other brands, and I always end up feeling really crappy about it afterwards. I know that they are going to end up using Windows and it's going to be just awful. I don't like giving people bad advice. I'd rather just give them no advice at all.
 

levitynyc

macrumors 65816
Aug 19, 2006
1,094
3,153
Don't ever recommend Norton...It's terrible software that will slow the computer down like crazy. Zonealarm is awesome, you can pay for it and get a spyware/adware remover, or just get the firewall for free, which you can download on the internet. I'd just download it for free then get Avast! antivirus, which is also free. Get ad-aware as well, which is free for download, but will not take care of live threats unless you buy it. Download Spybot Search and Destroy for this, which is also free. So instead of buying Norton which will slow down your computer A lot and is very intrusive, just download these free products.
Its a disgrace that in 2007 people still have to go crazy about spyware and viruses. I recommend macs. If they dont take my advice I dont offer any other solutions
 

blueicedj

macrumors 6502
Jul 11, 2007
271
1
Its a disgrace that in 2007 people still have to go crazy about spyware and viruses. I recommend macs. If they dont take my advice I dont offer any other solutions
Well it's because it's 2007 that there are more threats. People get smarter as well as the firewalls are getting smarter...the main reason macs don't get Virus's is because there aren't enough people on macs for the virus writers to care about.
In the end though, no virus for macs! Just gotta keep the population somewhat small...
 

razyorv

macrumors member
Aug 14, 2007
59
0
Don't ever recommend Norton...It's terrible software that will slow the computer down like crazy. Zonealarm is awesome, you can pay for it and get a spyware/adware remover, or just get the firewall for free, which you can download on the internet. I'd just download it for free then get Avast! antivirus, which is also free. Get ad-aware as well, which is free for download, but will not take care of live threats unless you buy it. Download Spybot Search and Destroy for this, which is also free. So instead of buying Norton which will slow down your computer A lot and is very intrusive, just download these free products.
I agree, never get Norton.
Anti-Virus: Avast
Firewall: ZoneAlarm
Adware: AdAware

While I haven't used PCs very much, I do know Dells offer a good value. (the Inspiron 1420 for laptop) IBM Thinkpads are solid as well.
 

clevin

macrumors G3
Aug 6, 2006
9,097
1
wireless n can be omitted if it adds more money, its practically useless now in most environment.
 

wyatt23

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Mar 7, 2006
541
0
Forest Hills, NY
sorry party weekend. haven't been around comps.

i'm not actually telling them to get an apple. from a what is the best situation for them to buy a computer. they asked me for an opinion, and i don't buy PC's anymore. i'd say get a VAIO or an alienware, but now you're already in the pricerange of an apple.

for this kid, he DOESN'T know how to use computers. So suggesting anything to him not apple is not being a good advice giver. why get someone who can barely type documents be given a computer that's going to be overrun with viruses and spyware, only to get the inevitable phone call of.. "my brothers computer is broken, can you fix it?"

they are going to spend 1100 on a computer ANYWAY. microsoft employees on apple's homepage even says... my next PC is going to be an apple.


i've worked as a computer trouble shooter at college, and i've only ever fix HP's, Dells, and Compaq's. The only time i ever had to fix an apple was because a girl couldn't make her pictures bigger in iPhoto!

i don't tell people other computers, because i've never enocountered another computer maker whose quality matched apple.
 

Cabbit

macrumors 68020
Jan 30, 2006
2,129
1
Scotland
I agree, never get Norton.
Anti-Virus: Avast
Firewall: ZoneAlarm
Adware: AdAware

While I haven't used PCs very much, I do know Dells offer a good value. (the Inspiron 1420 for laptop) IBM Thinkpads are solid as well.
Use avg free, with pc cillen house call weekly. use windows firewall and windows adware thing i think its called defender and that sould be set. To the op recormend a nice cheep acer with a new video card if its for games.
Recormend them Windows XP over vista.
 

suneohair

macrumors 68020
Aug 27, 2006
2,137
0
Don't give them advice. They will still go to best buy and get ripped off. Trust me. I have been down this road many times. They see that $349 notebook at Best Buy and they buy it because they don't know a damn thing and they see that it is cheap..

Just let it go.
 

Osarkon

macrumors 68020
Aug 30, 2006
2,161
4
Wales
Don't give them advice. They will still go to best buy and get ripped off. Trust me. I have been down this road many times. They see that $349 notebook at Best Buy and they buy it because they don't know a damn thing and they see that it is cheap..

Just let it go.
That's very true. But try and give them some sort of minimum spec to work with, then let them go and do their thing. At least you've given them something.
 

darthraige

macrumors 68000
Aug 8, 2007
1,612
2
Coruscant, but Boston will do.
I hate people that don't want to listen when it comes to buying computers. Hence why I'm waiting for the new MacPro... Anyway, I have turned a lot of people over to Mac. They actually listened to me. When it comes to the other side, you are better off building your own. Soooooo much cheaper.
 

suneohair

macrumors 68020
Aug 27, 2006
2,137
0
That's very true. But try and give them some sort of minimum spec to work with, then let them go and do their thing. At least you've given them something.
That has never worked either. I tell them what they should be looking for and they come home with a celeron with 256MB of RAM. Ha. :rolleyes:
 

Osarkon

macrumors 68020
Aug 30, 2006
2,161
4
Wales
That has never worked either. I tell them what they should be looking for and they come home with a celeron with 256MB of RAM. Ha. :rolleyes:
Oh dear. There's just no helping some people. I blame the stores for selling under powered equipment :rolleyes: Hehe.