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Author Topic: New PC buying advice  (Read 770 times)

Offline jinky

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New PC buying advice
« on: June 15, 2016, 01:54:14 PM »
I`ve been served well by my Dell Sudio xps and my Sony Vaio before getting 5/6 years out of them before  they ran into issues. been having  repeated problems with my Dell for the last 2/3 months - mainly with graphics cads failing I`m told but also got some motherboard issues and was recommended it`s time for a new PC The trouble is which?
I`ve no knowledge for asking someone to build me one and am happy to pay up to around £550 for the tower unit itself which would probably come with a keyboard and mouse but I`d use my exisiting Samsung monitor with it. I`ve seen these two that look interesting:
http://www.medion.com/gb/shop/multimedia-pcs-medion-akoya-p5318-i-entry-level-gaming-pc-310020821.html#specification
The Medion offers a 2 year guarantee and the various Medion laptops / external hard drives I have bought have served me well in their time. The graphics card on this one seems better than the Acer one which seems to get slagged off for performance. Doesn`t mention an ethernet connection for my internet but I assume that is the LAN input?


The Acer one at PC world is similar price with less on board memory,  more HD memory but worse graphics card?
http://www.pcworld.co.uk/gbuk/computing/desktop-pcs/desktop-pcs/acer-t3-710-desktop-pc-10137774-pdt.html

Just seen one more at Ebuyer with 12 mth warranty

http://www.ebuyer.com/735850-zoostorm-desktop-pc-i7-6700-7260-2088


I`ve been using a 6gb Dell machine with no problems running Photoshop, Lightroom, NX2 and the rest. My biggest regret would be losing windows 7 which I have liked for the unknown windows 10 and I hope I would not have any compatability issues with CS6 and Lightroom 3.4 etc although I`ll miss Live Movie Maker and DVD maker which came free with windows 7! I`ll miss the multi card readers that were built in to my Dell too - not just SD but I do have other card readers so no big issue.

Any points for or against these or somewhere better to buy. I cannot afford the Dell ones I`ve looked at and their monitor and now pc have let me down  so I`d like a change. Medion will deliver free and the other I can pick up at PC World.

Any help / advice appreciated.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2016, 02:09:02 PM by jinky »

Offline ABERS

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Re: New PC buying advice
« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2016, 02:58:04 PM »
Strangely  I've  been contemplating a new purchase for the past couple  of months  since my machine, whilst not giving me any much trouble at the moment, is getting towards its 6th  birthday and I keep getting messages that Vista is no longer supported for updates etc..

I know nothing about the innards of such things but keep getting advice from all regions and areas about what I need.

My  current machine is a Hewlett Packard, and it has given me sterling service, so I'm  inclined to stick with  that make. I bought it at John Lewis because having shopped around at the time I was put off by somewhat slick salesmanship one encountered at PCWORLD,  whereas the staff at JL were calm and seemed  well clued up on their products, and competitively  priced. Lewis' s Web site has a wide choice of gear.

I've  also been pointed this time towards having a machine built to order by a firm Novatech, which seems to have some merit in as much as you can just have it built leaving out all those things that you perhaps never use, gaming etc.

Have a look at Novatech.co.uk

I don't  want to tempt fate but I'm  always puzzled  by the number of posts in the What annoyed you today thread about things going wrong with computers.

Maybe  I've  been lucky with my HP.

Like all things in this life you only get what you pay for .

Good luck.
P.S  I'll  be keen to see what others advise in making up my mind.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2016, 03:02:50 PM by ABERS »

Offline Hinfrance

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Re: New PC buying advice
« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2016, 04:29:10 PM »
I fear chaps that computers are becoming ever more commoditised, and therefore tending to be jerry built, Apple not excluded. Even if you buy separate bits and plug them together like I do you still cannot guarantee things will last. Take memory for example: I had never had a memory bank fail since my first PC almost 30 years ago  . . . until recently. I also had a rather expensive (Asus) graphics card go belly up. The former chips were replaced under warranty, the latter not as it had gone past the warranty period.

My 2 cents for what it is worth. You're doing mainly photography, so you want decent monitors and graphics cards. A graphics card with 2gb ram as a minimum for optimal performance, Geforce 730 or higher, AMD R9 or better. The graphics handling in W10 is very good, so don't worry about the OS. You'll be better off with the fastest processor you can get for the money, so go for an 8 core or more if you can as just about all recent photography apps use multi threading. As for memory, the more the merrier. An SSD or hybrid drive will help with start up times. Disk drives are a cheap as chips, so don't pay too much extra for a larger installed drive you can always add more storage later. If you are thinking of using external storage make sure you go for USB3 ports and drives, they are a lot faster than USB2.

Card readers cost about £5 on eBay, so all you need is a spare half slot.

Alan, Vista is no longer being updated, but it shouldn't cause you too many problems if you steer clear of those Russian websites featuring ladies of ill repute. It still runs Windows defender which is a perfectly adequate basic protection. So don't rush into anything. Our daughter's machine still runs Vista, being my old one and the best part of ten years old.

Paul the Medion PC - looks good value with the one small exception that all of the SATA ports are already in use meaning you can't add another internal drive. Probably not an issue for you. It wouldn't put me off to be honest, it looks good on paper.
The PC world one, OKish.
The Ebuyer one - no - the graphics are not going to be good enough. That said, my PC came from eBuyer - but in lots of separate bits :)

Alan, Novatech. I looked at them before I built a machine myself. Their stock builds are a bit basic in one or more area (the operating system is extra, for example) and the cost quickly mounts up as you add customised components. Not ideal for a tyro.

I've still got at least three years to go on this machine, or is it two? Anyway it'll do for now and I would never be able to get the FD to sanction the purchase of another one just yet.
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Offline jinky

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Re: New PC buying advice
« Reply #3 on: June 15, 2016, 05:10:58 PM »
Cheers Howard. I`m tempted by the Medion with previous experience, the extra warranty and the added bonus they`ve just sent me a discount voucher for signing up for newsletters. I did look at Novatech but found a basic price then had to add more and mmore for the spec I wantd and operating system so stopped. The PC world Acer seems to get slammed for the graphics card so I`m thinking Medion just now. probably leave it until I get back after a weekend with friends and y PC is running again now after a few more graphics card / start up issues again.

Offline Paul Montgomery

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Re: New PC buying advice
« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2016, 07:32:03 PM »
I'm a bit out of date with the pc buying / upgrading malarkey, but anything you'd like to keep such as the card reader could probably be removed from the old pc and put in the new one.

Offline jinky

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Re: New PC buying advice
« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2016, 08:01:45 PM »
I'm a bit out of date with the pc buying / upgrading malarkey, but anything you'd like to keep such as the card reader could probably be removed from the old pc and put in the new one.

Thanks Paul but I'd have to drill holes into the case to feed them in!   Not a deal breaker as I have a good card reader I can connect by USB anyway.

Offline Oldboy

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Re: New PC buying advice
« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2016, 08:49:04 PM »

The Medion offers a 2 year guarantee and the various Medion laptops / external hard drives I have bought have served me well in their time. The graphics card on this one seems better than the Acer one which seems to get slagged off for performance. Doesn`t mention an ethernet connection for my internet but I assume that is the LAN input?

Go for the Medion PC, as I still use one with WindowsXP and never had a problem with it.  :tup:

My biggest regret would be losing windows 7 which I have liked for the unknown windows 10 and I hope I would not have any compatability issues with CS6 and Lightroom 3.4 etc although I`ll miss Live Movie Maker and DVD maker which came free with windows 7! I`ll miss the multi card readers that were built in to my Dell too - not just SD but I do have other card readers so no big issue.

You can set-up a duel boot PC, with another hard disk inside the PC, as it should have a extra hard disk connection on the motherboard. When the PC is switched on it allows you to choose which disk you boot from.  :tup:

A multi-card reader is usually fitted as standard today but it's at the back for this PC. It also has Gigabit LAN network controller: 10/100/1,000 Mbit/s
and WLAN b/g/n and Bluetooth 4.0. Medion is a German company so it will be a well made PC.  :tup:


Offline Reinardina

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Re: New PC buying advice
« Reply #7 on: June 15, 2016, 08:55:16 PM »
John Lewis do not sell Medion as far as I am aware, but if you ever find a machine you like, and JL sells the same computer, I'd always go for John Lewis.

They offer a two year guarantee as standard, very regularly offer a three year guarantee on certain machines, and their service is unsurpassed. Sometimes you have to be a bit persistent, but I have had extremely good service.
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Offline jinky

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Re: New PC buying advice
« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2016, 09:09:38 AM »
I did look at John Lewis but nothing I wanted there. TBH I`ve rather given up on them since their price promise become useless as they are generally more expensive. Their 2 year guarantee is paid for in that it renders their price promise null and void. You highlight the savings made elsewhere and they say "But they do not give a 2 year warranty". You say give me a one year warranty and match it then and they say they cannot. Thus it can be cheaper to shop elsewhere and use the savings for the extra warranty or just get it cheaper.

Offline Reinardina

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Re: New PC buying advice
« Reply #9 on: June 16, 2016, 09:31:51 AM »
In the past, they reduced a laptop I bought, within three months of purchase, and refunded me the difference, when I pointed it out.
This has happened twice, but was rather a long time ago, when laptops were still about £1000.

I bought something else that I later saw elsewhere at a lower price and got the money back. But to my surprise they did not lower the price of said article, so you have to be vigilant.
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Offline jinky

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Re: New PC buying advice
« Reply #10 on: June 16, 2016, 09:50:28 AM »
Yes at one time they did but now unlkess the product you are looking at elsewhere has 2 years guarantee "It is not like for like". I bought a compact there because I won a voucher for John Lewis in a photography competition  but could have got it for £70 less elsewhere which would have effectively bought a 3 year warranty elsewhere with the saving against their included 2 years. Still they do have good customer service and I am fond of my free cuppa with my Waitrose card at the local grocers  ;)

 

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