Is $1000 a good deal for this DELL?

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by puffswimi, Jan 23, 2013.

  1. Hubb1e

    Hubb1e Senior member

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    I still don't know why you want to buy a new system. A core 2 duo is entirely acceptable for normal use cases. Putting in an SSD and adding some ram might be all you need. My neighbor bought a Dell I recommended and it cost him $420 and he got a core i5 and 8GB of memory. He dropped in an AMD 7750 and was playing Diablo III on high. I have many doubts that you need that much horsepower from your computer. Remember that iPads are capable of surfing the internet with a CPU that's from a telephone. The emergence of mobile will keep PC requirements down for the foreseeable future.
     
  2. puffswimi

    puffswimi Junior Member

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    You make a good point as well. The thing is my computer is 5 years old and even though the games I do play (if at all) aren't graphics intensive (games like portal, puzzle games, LIMBO, etc.) I feel 1) shame at having an older computer even though I really know nothing much about them and 2) I absolutely hate letting a good deal pass me by. I was told that my i5/ASUS combo deal was unlikely to go for less than $280 in the forseeable future and probably not less than by even $50.00 over the course of the next year, so I jumped in (although I still have not opened the packaging).

    Apparently, the benchmarks show the i5-3750K is 200% to 300% faster than my current computer E8400. Not that matters if I am not using the power effectively. However, I am a longtime advocate of upgrading one's computer (if reasonable) because of the profound difference it makes in one's daily life.

    For example, I have a friend who has a 6 year old shit-computer made by THE shit-company (i.e. Apple), and I told him that getting a newer shit-apple will dramatically enhance his daily life over other things such as newer car, clothes (he's fugly), or certain foodstuffs. He bought a newer Apple with Snow Leopard and was like "Wowza!" in terms of the increase in his general happiness. So I kinda guess that is what I hope to achieve as well.

    p.s. I will say in a related note, I bought an expensive gaming mouse some time ago and it has made a profound difference in how I surf the web. Much faster and efficient than using the old manufacturer's throw-in.
     
  3. Torn Mind

    Torn Mind Diamond Member

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    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Core i7-3770 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($289.98 @ Amazon)
    Motherboard: Foxconn H61AP ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($62.55 @ Newegg)
    Memory: A-Data Premier Series 4GB (1 x 4GB) DDR3-1333 Memory ($26.47 @ Amazon)
    Memory: G.Skill Value 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($43.99 @ Newegg)
    Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($89.99 @ Amazon)
    Case: Apex PC-389-C ATX Mid Tower Case ($24.99 @ Newegg)
    Power Supply: Corsair Builder 500W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($39.99 @ Newegg)
    Monitor: Dell U2412M 60Hz 24.0" Monitor ($298.13 @ Amazon)
    Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8 Professional Full (64-bit) ($139.99 @ Newegg)
    Total: $1016.08
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-01-25 16:29 EST-0500)
    Even with cheapskating, the Dell comes out cheaper.
    Yes, for the price, it is indeed a decent deal, plus you get Bluetooth, Blu-Ray reader, and a card reader, which add about another $100 to the build. The software also would cost a pretty penny if you were building yourself. Wireless internet, another 15-30 dollars

    The board from Dell is probably a Foxconn, because Foxconn sure knows how to cut costs(low wages) to meet a certain price point, making it desirable for those who sell at a high volume; $1 more expensive is 1 million dollars lost if you ship a million units.

    If you feel up to the task, you probably could even try liquidating that 3770 by selling it for $280-300 and then replacing it with the 3570K. ASUS mobos carry a price premium. The Z77 ones hover around 100 dollars and rarely ever goes below that. You could try selling it too.
     
  4. Eureka

    Eureka Diamond Member

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    1) What shame? Older systems will work just as well as a new system. If you have a E8400 system already, you could pop in a used Q9550 (see if you can find one around $80-100) and reap the benefits of a faster quad-core. I'd be more proud of an old, well-performing system I built, rather than a new pre-built.
    2) The deal is OK, but it's not rare. It's been at that price all year, and when the next generation comes out, you'll find an equivalent deal. There are no such things as deals of a lifetime when it comes to computers, because tech you don't need is money that goes to waste; it depreciates. Well, unless you get it at 50% of retail, but what you pay at MC isn't close to that.
    3) The most profound difference you'll see is a SSD upgrade. A Q9550, or even your E8400, is more than powerful enough to handle everyday tasks.
    4) Once again, you're buying for the sake of buying. If you want a good upgrade path...

    Buy a SSD and install a fresh copy of Windows, and defrag that old hard drive
    Buy a Q9550 and throw it into your current computer if CPU tasks are slowing down your computer
    Buy another 4GB of RAM if you're getting RAM limited
    Buy a video card if your computer is slouching in games
    Finally, if you need to scratch your consumerism itch, buy a nice aluminum case and throw everything in there

    If you need a SSD right now, the Intel X25-M 160GB is around $90 after rebates on Tigerdirect, or wait for a 840 250GB to get back down to $150 again (it's $170 right now on Newegg). Either one of these will give you a HUGE improvement over a CPU upgrade.
     
    #29 Eureka, Jan 25, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2013
  5. Hubb1e

    Hubb1e Senior member

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    An Intel E8400 is an extremely capable processor even by today's standards. Yeah, it might be 5 years old but it has a high clock and two fast cores. People still build new computers with CPUs no faster than your E8400. What you need is an SSD. That will change your life, a new computer will not. An SSD is an order of magnitude better than a mechanical harddrive.

    The E8400 can also still play relatively new games. It will handle Portal II and Diablo III with ease which are popular games with casual gamers. You might want to actually post the specs of your current machine so everyone knows where you're coming from.

    There is no such thing as a good deal when you don't need the service it provides.
     
  6. puffswimi

    puffswimi Junior Member

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    You guys are incredibly awesome.

    Thanks for all the straight advice. Unsurprisingly, neither Dell nor Microcenter were as blunt and forthcoming (commissions) in fact the Dell guy was a caricature of what outsourced Phillipino call-center-techs must think that American consumers demand in customer service - lots of over-the-top claims in our sales chat. I appreciate candor and the Dell call center guy was the complete opposite, good for the LULZ though.

    BTW: for other interested parties...the CLEARANCE SALE on Dell Outlet merchandise ends today the 25th of January. However, based on the zealotry of the salesman I assume you can get an extension based on his desperation to make the sale. I would ask him technical/specific questions and his reply would be "How would you like your shipping?" or other closer comments.
     
    #31 puffswimi, Jan 25, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2013
  7. Torn Mind

    Torn Mind Diamond Member

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    My university computers have E8400s. Pretty snappy when the RAM is not stuffed like a pinata. The benchmarks indicate that they are comparable to Sandy Bridge Pentiums. So, they haven't fallen into obsolescence just yet. An i5 would be nice, but an i3-3225 could do just as well. The Core 2 Quad has similar multithreaded performance to the i3, but it lags in single threaded performance.

    Yes, it would be nice to know your current system's model and specs to more accurately evaluate whether you really need to upgrade to a new system and monitor now.

    The reasons you listed should not strongly push you to pull the trigger. There will always be good deals in the near future; they have to clear stock and move inventory. No need to feel shame about old tech, either. As long as they're working for you, everything should be fine. Hell, I don't really like my the many ancient pieces of tech I have from the PII, PIII, and P4 days (All but one were given to us free; my family did buy a Dimension 2400) because they are limiting performance-wise, but shame? Never felt it.
     
  8. VirtualLarry

    VirtualLarry Lifer

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    This. That deal on an SSD at TD is a good one. It's an older model SSD, but probably the gold standard of reliability as far as SSDs go, and it has decent random I/O scores. (What really matters when you're looking at an SSD.)

    I got my rebate in around a month or so, when I opted for the "fast rebate" option (cost me a slight bit off of the rebate amount), when I bought one of the 80GB models of the X25-M G2.

    With an SSD and a fresh install of Windows 7 (screw 8, the UI is pretty funky), your computer will seem very "new to you". It really accelerates loading the OS, as well as general I/O speedups.

    I will note that using FDE, will lose a lot of the benefit of an SSD, due to throttling of the I/O due to software bottlenecks. Especially with SandForce-based drives. This doesn't apply to most people though.
     
  9. puffswimi

    puffswimi Junior Member

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    SOME ADDITIONAL INFO:

    Processor: Core 2 Duo E8400 @ 3.00 GHz (not overclocked)
    RAM: 8.00 GB DDR2
    System: 32 Bit OS
    Motherboard: Gigabyte ep45 udh3r
    Videocard: Radeon 512K

    One of the main issues for my upgrade is that my temp/ram constantly runs at 50%/90%+. I always get that RAM is being overloaded and that I need to close some applications. I just surf the web and stuff, music, videos, lots and lots of youtube as many shows I watch off youtube.

    I don't mind shutting stuff down, but sometimes it just closes everything spontaneously before I can respond.

    My initial reaction was upgrading DDR2 to 16GB but it is somewhat expensive and MC guy upsold me based on the cost/benefit of DDR2 vs. DDR3.

    Will i5 DDR3 + upgrade stop this memory overload? Will overclocking fix my issues without upgrading (haven't attempted yet but apparently the combo is very upgradeable to a stable 4.0 GHz.

    Thoughts about this new info?
     
  10. Hubb1e

    Hubb1e Senior member

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    Well there is your issue right there. A 32 bit OS is limited to 3.5 GB of ram so you aren't even using that 8 gigs. 16 gigs would change nothing and 8 gigs is plenty. You need to upgrade to a 64 bit OS
     
  11. puffswimi

    puffswimi Junior Member

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    OK. How do I change that 32 bit OS to utilize more RAM?
     
  12. Torn Mind

    Torn Mind Diamond Member

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    There is probably no way to change a 32 bit Windows installation in to 64-bit one. You're gonna need to install the OS fresh. You can create a new partition on your old drive and install it on that. Or, you can get an SSD and install it on that.

    If you install Windows on a new hard drive and the installer detects the old hard drive, Windows 7 will place its boot related files on the old drive and modify the boot menu on the old drive. If you disconnect the old drive, then it will place its boot files on the new drive and nothing on the old drive is changed. You will, if you choose this second option have to set in BIOS which hard drive you want to boot from. I personally would take second way since if the old drive goes bye-bye, I don't have to have the hassle of recovering my installation or reinstalling the OS.
     
  13. RaistlinZ

    RaistlinZ Diamond Member

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    puffswimi,

    I think you'd be well suited to keep your i5-3750k and ASUS mobo, buy the remaining parts you'd need from Microcenter, and let them assemble it for you. There comes a point when it's not worth spending money into an older system. An i5 + SSD will be so much faster than what you have now you won't believe why you didn't make the jump sooner.

    You can get a 256GB Samsung 840 Pro for $199.99 shipped right now at Newegg. That's the best SSD out there and a killer price to boot.

    16GB DDR3 = $70.00
    Case = $50.00
    PSU = $40.00
    GPU = $150.00
    OS = $90.00

    That's about $600.00 to complete your build. :ninja: Maybe you can salvage your current CDROM, and use your current HDD as a storage drive in your new system.

    But don't bother putting more cash into your current rig. It's an exercise in futility.
     
  14. Torn Mind

    Torn Mind Diamond Member

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    His primary problem is a RAM bottleneck caused by his operating system; he has about 3.5 gigs of usable RAM for heavy youtube usage. The $90-$160 he spends on a 64 bit system will clear his RAM bottleneck. Everything else is not particularly necessary, although the SSD will serve to boost the speed of his system regardless of whether he sticks with his E8400 or the i5. The OS and SSD are products he would need to spend on regardless of whether or not he upgrades his CPU, mobo, and RAM.

    For 700 dollars, he's better off buying that Dell and selling off the 3770 and monitor, then replacing the 3770 with a cheaper CPU.
     
    #39 Torn Mind, Jan 25, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2013
  15. Hubb1e

    Hubb1e Senior member

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    How would an i5 make his YouTube faster?
     
  16. puffswimi

    puffswimi Junior Member

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    I do remember that both 32/64 bit OS versions are bought together so if I reinstall should I just choose 64 bit on the installation prompt? What if install 64 bit Win 7 on a NEW SSD and then set overclock parameters? Will I have then created an "instant upgrade" foregoing a new build or adding RAM?
     
  17. VirtualLarry

    VirtualLarry Lifer

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    If you have a Windows 7 retail package, then it includes both 32-bit and 64-bit install media. Each is on a separate disc.

    Choose the 64-bit version, and re-install (on a new SSD or HDD, as the only HDD connected) using your existing key.

    If it is an upgrade version, then you will have to follow the instructions for installing an upgrade edition as a fresh install, otherwise known as the double-install trick.
     
  18. Blain

    Blain Lifer

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    Blah, Blah, Blah about building your own. Why worry about bricking another system...

    Your life will be easier if you simply order a Dell.
     
  19. StrangerGuy

    StrangerGuy Diamond Member

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    Not really. For the mATX Dells it will be safe to assume they at least have a PCI-E 16x slot, 2x DIMM slots and spare PSU power for a 7770 at least. Of course those aren't intended for power users but for a budget gamer they can be incredible deals after a drop-in video card.
     
  20. Hubb1e

    Hubb1e Senior member

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    Come on. Finish reading the thread. Don't confuse the guy. His system is already fast. He just needs to buy an ssd and then install the 64 bit version of his os on it and then move his files.
     
  21. puffswimi

    puffswimi Junior Member

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    This is the advice I am going to take. I am going to buy a SSD and give it a new install of Win7.

    The computer I bricked in the past is something I was VERY CAREFUL in assembling. My apprehensiveness lies in not knowing what I did that killed it (if anything). I was told it was static electricity but it may have been a faulty part as I was very sensitive about not having any charge to my person (metal touching while assembling). Who knows?

    All your advice has been very generous and kind, but to some extent I'm on my own as to whatever solution works. I am going to look at this like how you fix an overheating car - you go from simple (Flush/thermostat) to complex (head gasket replacement/junk car) or in this case SSD/Win7 to replacement i5/buy DELL, respectively. Maybe I can get another 18 months of use out of my current system and get an even better deal later on. FYI: Consumer Reports states it is best to buy a computer either post CES (early January) or in the summer (when inventories stack-up/backtoschool sales). So I will likely be able to snag another deal down the pike, regardless (also slickdeals.com/dealnews.com regularly report sale items).

    Thanks again and I will update my solution on this thread for others to apply to their own situation in the next couple of weeks.
     
  22. puffswimi

    puffswimi Junior Member

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    HELP!

    Went to MC and bought a Samsung 128GB SSD drive and have tried to install Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit OS multiple times to no avail. I formatted and partitioned the SSD as well as made sure no other drives were connected. It goes through the load screen and just stops with the cursor stuck (but moveable) where the welcome to windows installation prompt should start.

    I checked my bios to make sure that it was loading from my DVD drive. I also checked to make sure that the Intel E8400 is compatible with 64 bit. It is more specifically considered "capable" as long as 4+GB of RAM are present (I have 8GB).

    I am currently trying to install Win7 using the SSD as a secondary drive, while powered by the Win7 32bit drive. I have thought it might be that Premium isn't compatible and Professional or Ultimate Win7 is what is required. Consecutive derailed Win7 OS installs could get a Gitmo prisoner (likely unlawfully detained btw) to confess...I am at my wit's end.

    I'm stumped, any thoughts or advice on how to install would be appreciated???
     
  23. Sleepingforest

    Sleepingforest Platinum Member

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    You should have a Windows key, right? Try downloading Win7 on another computer and loading it onto a flash drive. Follow these instructions.
     
  24. Torn Mind

    Torn Mind Diamond Member

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    #49 Torn Mind, Jan 28, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2013
  25. Fayd

    Fayd Diamond Member

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    i have no idea what is being said here.

    the core of the OS, as well as hardware compatibility, is the exact same no matter what version of windows 7 you're using. >.>