Your On-Line Port'o'Call

Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Rate This Thread
Page 1 of 2 1 2
#539395 - 10/13/12 02:51 AM Computer brand preference???  
Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 15,692
GoFirstClass Offline
Retired Boating Bum
GoFirstClass  Offline
Retired Boating Bum
Grand Poobah

Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 15,692
Pasco, WA
My old HP finally died (THANK GOD) so I'm going to pick on up tomorrow. We're down in AZ so I don't exactly know where I'm going to get it, but I'm thinking Costco or Best Buy or WalMart.

I'm thinking of limiting my search to these brands:
Dell
HP
Samsung

Do any of you 'puter whizzes have a preference among those brands, and if so, why?

Also, are there other brands I should be looking at?

What I'm looking for is a mid-range model. I don't need a bazillion gigs of RAM, I figure 6-8 is plenty. I'm thinking of an I5 processor and probably ~600 meg hard drive. I want a DVD drive, 2-3 USB ports and that's about all I can think of.

Your thoughts? pc


"Beachcomber" 1995 Sea Ray 550 Sedan Bridge


Anchor's down......Bottoms Up!
A Word from Our Sponsors
#539397 - 10/13/12 07:20 AM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 4,833
BToran Offline
Admiral
BToran  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 4,833
Northport, New York
i've had good luck with hp and dell in the past. no experience with samsung. best bang for the buck i've seen recently is for a brand called ASUS. years ago they only made mother boards, but it was their mother boards that were used in over 80% of all named brand pc's. now they make laptops and pc's themselves (including the motherboards inside).

i've had good luck with this brand as well, purchasing my last laptop and most recently my desktop pc (which i'm using now) from asus. i was able to get a great pc at a bargain basement price. the only thing i needed to add was a high-end video card and an upgraded power supply. the video card that came with the pc was ok, but fell short for gaming and video editing. an upgraded power supply was needed to drive the new video card. most low-end pc's make this tradeoff (low-end video card and power supply) to achieve their price points. for casual pc users (ie internet usage, ms office or similar, etc), the low-end video cards are fine.

one other thing i added (but wasn't strictly necessary) was a stand-alone exhaust fan to help move air through the pc. one thing i've found over the years is that the more hot air you can remove from a pc, the longer it's components will last.

pc placement is always critical to allow airflow and for me, the ambient noise level for the pc is important too. my parents ran afoul of both of these a few years ago. they bought a pc that was so loud, they put the cpu in an enclosed cabinet attached to the desk to keep the area quiet. without cool air to draw through the cpu, it didn't last long.

if pc noise is important to you, check it out in the store if possible. although i boosted the power supply and video card and added a fan, my pc is absolutely whisper quiet.


Bruce Toran
Former Owner of a 1996 Carver 320 Voyager
-----------------------------------------
"Don't Eat Anything Bigger Than Your Head"
#539398 - 10/13/12 07:21 AM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 3,689
Admin Offline
Admin  Offline


Admiral

Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 3,689
Cyberland
For your needs, it is basically a commodity item. You can't go wrong with one of the main name brands is my thought.

I'd key in more on things like ergonomics, screen quality and the little stuff.

Where does the power supply plug in? On the side or back? When you use the thing when plugged into the wall, will this matter to you?

Same thing for where the USB ports are.

Go ahead and actually type something on the keyboard and see how you like it. In particular, pay attention to where your thumbs are in relation to the touch pad. Will your thumbs keep hitting it and making weird things happen as you type? Some units have really large touch pads and I for one can't stand them.

Does it have an SD slot so it can read the images from your camera? This is a nice thing to have so you do not need to plug your camera into the laptop. Just take the SD card from the camera and plug it in.

All the stores you list have online stores as well. You can read reviews online from those who have used the unit.

Have fun shopping. And when you do, keep in mind that the sale folks in the stores likely will know next to nothing about what they try to tell you. I know there are exceptions, but how will you know? wink


Mike
[Linked Image]
BoatingABC.com
My imaginary friend thinks you have serious problems.
#539399 - 10/13/12 07:56 AM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 3,140
Philr Offline
Admiral
Philr  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 3,140
Rock Island, IL
I tend towards brand names, hence I presently have a mid-range Lenovo, which has served well for 3 years now. Has a DVD drive built-in, and ditto on Admin's SD-slot recommendation, this is how I transfer pics now and much prefer it.

I prefer a robust machine, eg nice keyboard, large screen, etc - and shy away from the ultra-slim, ultra light laptops. A few lbs of carry weight is irrelevant to me. I have a 15" display and would not consider less.

I never buy mfgr's wtys, but in the case of a laptop, I always do....they are just more susceptible to damage, and let's face it, more fragile. In most cases, they are quite reasonable IMO, seems I pd ~$125 for an addl 3 years of P+L carry in (I have a Lenovo-certified service center). I CANNOT STAND big box stores and their Customer NO-service, and avoid them if at all possible.

Also good time to review your security software (anti-spam, anti-malware) and backup technique.


'08 Chaparral 246SSi VP5.7GXiDP

My wife says that I spend too much time talking to random people online. What do you guys think?
#539401 - 10/13/12 09:14 AM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 8,644
HotByte Offline
Admiral
HotByte  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 8,644
Barnesville, GA
Son has ASUS laptop and a home built with ASUS motherboard. Both seem to be holding up well. Daughter has a Lenovo desktop that is working well for her.

We have a lot of Dell Latitude laptops at work that have done well. Daughter had Dell Inspiron several years ago that stopped charging battery. Laptop would only work with charger plugged in. Several students at work have brought in their personal Inspirons with same issue.

We bought 50 or more of the last Gateway business class desktops for work and every one eventually had motherboard issues. We replaced about half before they stopped supporting them. I don't recall all the particulars but the business class side of Gateway split off into a different company and then went under.


2009 Tidewater 1900 Bay Max pulled by
1998 Dodge Durango SLT and 2006 Gulfstream Yellowstone 32' class C Motorhome
#539403 - 10/13/12 10:00 AM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 8,072
captkevin Offline
Admiral
captkevin  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 8,072
Chicago, IL
i'd go for whatever of the big brands has a deal. Admiral & i both have Dell desktops. We typically just buy a separate tower & not monitor or other accessories. Shop around online & see whats out there.


2004 Rinker 232
2010 Dodge Ram Crew Cab Laramie 4x4
#539408 - 10/13/12 12:25 PM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 7,351
MarkHB Offline
Dressed for dinner
MarkHB  Offline
Dressed for dinner
Admiral

Joined: Sep 2003
Posts: 7,351
Norris Lake, TN
Lenovo punters used to manufacture all IBM laptops under the name Legend Holdings. ( made a lot of money on that stock), but have since launched their own brand. I have bought a few of those and gave them away in Africa. They are all still working under the harsh dusty conditions over there.
I have a Dell and very happy with it. 3 year old now


24' Monterey Explorer
Honda PWC
http://www.picturetrail.com/markhb

Golf!! Waste of a good gun range.
#539413 - 10/13/12 05:53 PM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 5,738
230 Mike Offline
Admiral
230 Mike  Offline
Admiral
Admiral

Joined: May 2005
Posts: 5,738
KC, Table Rock, Lake Perry
My favorite over the past 15 years has been Dell. However, I bought my wife an ASUS about 10 months ago and have been VERY impressed by it. If I had to buy a new laptop for myself this afternoon, I might well go buy one of those.

One thing to consider, that many don't think about, is whether it has a separate 10-key pad in the keyboard. That's a really nice thing to have IMO. The Dell Latitude I've been using for several years is built like a brick outhouse and I intend to use it for as long as possible (I still appreciate having a real serial port), but I sure wish it had a 10-key.

Last edited by 230 Mike; 10/13/12 05:55 PM.



Mike
2005 Four Winns 230/240
VP 5.7GXi/DP
'98 F150 XLT
Boat Pic
#539422 - 10/13/12 09:36 PM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 3,567
kenhdog Offline
Admiral
kenhdog  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 3,567
Oxnard, CA
I didn't see whether you wanted a desktop or laptop.

If a laptop, I agree with Mike. Dell Latitudes are pretty proven.

I'm not a huge fan of their desktops, because of their configuration peculiarities, but components are easy to install/replace with quick-clips and levers and such.

I have an HP desktop. Pretty solid except for some Win 7 heartburn.

As mentioned above, others worth a look:
Lenovo (former IBM)
ZBT Systems

My next machine will probably not be a Windows OS.

I'm hearing a lot of good things about Linux Mint, even loaded on old closet machines, giving them new life.


2002 Rinker 212 Captiva
Merc 5.7 EFI Alpha
Trail-Rite Trailer
1999 GMC 'Burb
#539423 - 10/13/12 10:33 PM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 3,199
casualboater Offline
Admiral
casualboater  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Jan 2004
Posts: 3,199
Highland, Michigan
We have a Dell Vostro laptop that just won't die. I bought it with the extended battery and as a desktop replacement, so it has all the bells and whistles. The battery lasts forever, even years later. I upgrade to a Samsung as the disk drive was on the fritz and the hard drive was a bit small. If not for the optical drive issue, I would most likely just have put a new hard drive in and kept it as my main computer.

I bought from the Dell refurb site. When I started the computer, it put up an initialization screen that only runs the first time it's fired up, so I ended up with a brand new computer. All the warranty was still in effect, it was most likely an unopened return.

In short, Dell gets my vote! Haven't had the Samsung long enough to have a good review on the longevity, but it's been a great machine so far, especially as I got it on a deal website for 400.00 including shipping.


1989 Larson DC 190
2017 GMC Acadia SLT-1
#539445 - 10/14/12 01:28 PM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 2,412
CJS Offline
Admiral
CJS  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 2,412
Lake Geneva, WI
I'll also vote for Dell. True story here. Just yesterday, I pulled a bonehead move and my Dell E310 fell off the bedrail of my truck (chest high) onto asphalt. I thought for sure the thing was toast. Faceplate is destroyed, case is bent, one side panel no longer fits. Took it in the house, turned it on, booted right up. So the Dell should survive the apocalypse, should it come to that.


2017 Yamaha VX Cruiser HO
2017 Toyota 4Runner Limited 4X4
2016 Toyota Sequoia Limited 4X4
#539454 - 10/15/12 12:14 AM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 365
lbrittain Offline
Vice Admiral
lbrittain  Offline
Vice Admiral

Joined: Nov 2004
Posts: 365
Rocklin, Ca.
My older Brother and another close friend of mine worked for HP and had HP work computers. My brother just retired after 31 years with HP, Agilent, last division was Avago Technologies. But believe it or not both preferred and owned Toshiba"s for their personal computers.


Larry Brittain
2005 Cobalt 200
"Live Aloha"
#539465 - 10/15/12 10:33 AM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 15,692
GoFirstClass Offline
Retired Boating Bum
GoFirstClass  Offline
Retired Boating Bum
Grand Poobah

Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 15,692
Pasco, WA
I've been looking around a bit and have found a few that I like. The new version of Windows 8 will be released on 10/26. The new computers with that loaded on them can't be sold until that date.

That means a lot of the older (read that as "current") models are going on sale. If I bought one of those I could update to Windows 8 for $14.99 by dialing the phone number to upgrade.


"Beachcomber" 1995 Sea Ray 550 Sedan Bridge


Anchor's down......Bottoms Up!
#539538 - 10/16/12 06:37 PM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 612
rollofire Offline
Admiral
rollofire  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 612
arcadia, calif
imac apple puters.......


2001 23' wellcraft excalibur
#539557 - 10/17/12 07:33 AM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,093
Al Offline
Nautical Alchemist
Al  Offline
Nautical Alchemist
Grand Poobah

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,093
Vagabond Wanderer from Mich.
My 5yr old Toshiba died earlier this year, and I replaced it with a Sony Vaio. So far, it has seemed to work pretty well.

But I'll agree with Admin, they are pretty much commodity these days.

And the one thing I did like about the Sony; there was not a lot of crapware I had to get rid of. And it came with a full blown version of Vegas Movie Studio, which is a fairly decent video editor.

Originally Posted By: rollofire
imac apple puters.......


Yea, got one of those too. But the Sony is a laptop, the iMac is a desktop that I use mostly for photo editing. The 21" screen on the iMac is the most beautiful thing I have eve seen, and it is a dream to do photo work on it.

Even having both systems (as well as Linux if you count the netbook I still have), each system into itself has advantages and disadvantages (yes MAC does do a few dumb things, perhaps not as dumb as Windows though).


President and CEO - Napmoor and Doolittle.


2004 Mercury 270 Dinghy.
2016 Grand Design Reflection 29RS 5th Wheel
2016 GMC Sierra 2500HD SLT 6.6L Diesel

previous boats:
1995 Carver 325
1999 Four Winns 268
1999 Four Winns 225
1996 Rinker 180
#539835 - 10/28/12 01:09 AM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 15,692
GoFirstClass Offline
Retired Boating Bum
GoFirstClass  Offline
Retired Boating Bum
Grand Poobah

Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 15,692
Pasco, WA
Well I took the plunge today and picked up a new 'puter. I decided a week or so ago to wait until the new machines with Windows 8 came out.

We don't have a plethora of computer stores around here so I went to Best Buy first. They had several of the new ones but most importantly, they had an HP rep there who could answer all my questions. We looked at several machines, some with Intel I-5's and some with the AMD Quad Core A-10's. He said the AMD-equipped 'puters would be faster than the I-5-equipped machines because of the Quad Core processors, and that typically an AMD machine would be about a hundred bucks cheaper. Being the resident BABC cheapskate, that appealed to me.

But before I made a decision I went to Costco to see what they had. There was an HP rep there too, so he showed me around the machines (theirs and Dells and others) and answered more questions. Costco had a very limited inventory on hand so the rep suggested I look at Costco's online site. They had more, but one that was significantly better than the one at Best Buy, and I'd have to wait 10-15 days for shipping.

So back to Best Buy. I picked up the HP and it's an HP Envy m-6 with a 15.6" screen, 750GB hard drive, 6.144GB of ram, DVD optical drive and what the rep at Costco described as two very nice features...the AMD chip set has a dedicated graphics card that would be nice when doing photo and video editing, and BeatsAudio which he said would give a Hi-Def stereo sound without having to crank the volume.

So I bought the HP but it's still sitting in the box. I want to check Amazon and a couple of other sites to see what's out there before I open the box. I can return it in 14 days if I decide not to keep it so, while I'm in a rush to get a 'puter set up, I'm going to do some more shopping.


"Beachcomber" 1995 Sea Ray 550 Sedan Bridge


Anchor's down......Bottoms Up!
#539836 - 10/28/12 07:53 AM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,093
Al Offline
Nautical Alchemist
Al  Offline
Nautical Alchemist
Grand Poobah

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,093
Vagabond Wanderer from Mich.
When I bought my Sony a couple of months ago, I qualified for an upgrade of Windows 8.

My advice would be to buy one with Windows 7, as they would likely have a free upgrade to Windows 8 should you want to upgrade to it... oh say in two years.

The conventional wisdom is to never upgrade Windows until the first service pack comes out (cuz by then they have most of the glaring bugs fixed).

The other conventional wisdom is to never upgrade an even version of Windows.

Otherwise these days computers are generally pretty reliable, so you won't go wrong in whatever you buy, as long as you stick with a name brand.



President and CEO - Napmoor and Doolittle.


2004 Mercury 270 Dinghy.
2016 Grand Design Reflection 29RS 5th Wheel
2016 GMC Sierra 2500HD SLT 6.6L Diesel

previous boats:
1995 Carver 325
1999 Four Winns 268
1999 Four Winns 225
1996 Rinker 180
#539837 - 10/28/12 08:10 AM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: Al]  
Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 3,140
Philr Offline
Admiral
Philr  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Mar 2003
Posts: 3,140
Rock Island, IL
Originally Posted By: Al
..... The conventional wisdom is to never upgrade Windows until the first service pack comes out (cuz by then they have most of the glaring bugs fixed).



I spent my entire working life with business technology of some type, and I very much agree with this. Early adopters pay a price.


'08 Chaparral 246SSi VP5.7GXiDP

My wife says that I spend too much time talking to random people online. What do you guys think?
#539845 - 10/28/12 12:02 PM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: Philr]  
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 12,416
KCook Offline
Admiral
KCook  Offline
Admiral

Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 12,416
Phoenix
Quote:
ditto on Admin's SD-slot recommendation, this is how I transfer pics now and much prefer it

Ditto again. My HP has a multi-format card reader built in. Though I use it only for SD and CF cards. The old CF cards are found in older DSLR cameras, and some pros still prefer CF. As long as your HP has an empty slot in front, this can be added later. Though that will be more $$ than getting a model with the feature included.

As for Windoze, my approach has been to leap frog versions. I went directly from Win2000 to Win7, skipping over XP and Vista. Which made me an early adapter for Win7. I did have a big problem with Win7, but that turned out to be due to my own efforts to customize the installation. So long as you take the entire package (ignore the bloat), and auto-updates, I would have confidence in the newest Win system.

Kelly

#539846 - 10/28/12 12:12 PM Re: Computer brand preference??? [Re: GoFirstClass]  
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,093
Al Offline
Nautical Alchemist
Al  Offline
Nautical Alchemist
Grand Poobah

Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 15,093
Vagabond Wanderer from Mich.
I see that if you are buying a new computer between now and Jan 31, 2013 that has Windows 7, you can qualify for a free upgrade to Windows 8 for $14.95.


President and CEO - Napmoor and Doolittle.


2004 Mercury 270 Dinghy.
2016 Grand Design Reflection 29RS 5th Wheel
2016 GMC Sierra 2500HD SLT 6.6L Diesel

previous boats:
1995 Carver 325
1999 Four Winns 268
1999 Four Winns 225
1996 Rinker 180
Page 1 of 2 1 2

Moderated by  Admin 

Sponsors
New Topics
VHF Radio
by Siuslaw57. 04/10/21 08:38 PM
Towing 30ft boats with a Lexus
by MarkHB. 04/10/21 03:18 PM
Boat Raft-up Product
by athiker. 04/08/21 12:08 PM
Ohhhhhhhhh boy (aka: fml) HELP Sheared off the drain plug f
by Jennifromthadock. 04/04/21 03:31 PM
Monterey vs Chaparral
by Siuslaw57. 04/03/21 01:42 PM
Scratching my head... Volvo Penta 4.3 sx Won’t crank
by Jennifromthadock. 04/03/21 08:23 AM
April 2 is a good day.
by Jack T. 04/03/21 02:03 AM
Something interesting to read this weekend--
by Frantically Relaxing. 04/02/21 08:26 PM
Rip Rap along shoreline
by MarkHB. 04/01/21 07:07 PM
You're gonna lose a TON of money when you sell it
by GoFirstClass. 03/31/21 07:57 PM
Who's Online Now
0 registered members (), 38 guests, and 1 spider.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
AdamZampa, Tunachick, Siuslaw57, Jennifromthadock, Carolyn
5552 Registered Users
Forum Statistics
Forums23
Topics37,461
Posts566,352
Members5,552
Most Online252
Aug 5th, 2017
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.6.0