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Buying a New Computer – Brands

My recommendations regarding computer brands and specs is based on 15+ years of personal experience. I make my recommendations based on what I would would use myself. Keep in mind these are just my opinions.

Group #1 – What I would not buy…any HP (Hewlett-Packard), Gateway or Compaq computers. It just seems like I am asked to fix a lot of these computers. In my opinion they use cheaper parts and proprietary software that cause more problems than on other systems.

Group #2 – What I would buy…a Dell from their Small and Medium Business line. You can get laptops starting around $600 and desktops around $500. The Dell Vostro line is good for someone looking to save money or if you do not require much more from your computer other than surfing the web and emailing. If you are more of a power user (you are on it 6+hours every day) then I would recommend the Dell Latitude laptops. Plan on spending $1200-$2500 for a Latitude model, but you really do get what you pay for.

There are many other brands that I have not had as much experience with and have not researched as much as I have the Dell’s. Some of these include Sony, Acer, Toshiba, eMachines, …etc. Although I have worked on all of these I never found them to be as problematic as the Group 1 brands.

Every few months someone asks me about switching to a MAC. They have 2 good points…their commercials are entertaining and they make good hardware. However after having one in my house for 2 years I can honestly say I would not buy another one. The main reason is the difference in the way they do EVERYTHING compared to a PC. It is like learning a new language. They can do almost everything a PC can but you must be prepared to relearn how to do everything if you plan on switching to a MAC.

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