Just getting these adverts out of my system....

  Stuartli 09:07 29 May 2004

Every so often a forum member seeks advice on the potential second-hand value of a computer system about to be replaced by a more up to date setup.

Opinions vary, mostly due to the fact that modern systems are faster, technologically far more advanced and, in real terms, cheaper than they have ever been.

Well here’s some examples from my local weekly, all advertised from the same source, that are prime examples of how to (not?) to go about it.

First one is described as a Dell Pentium II with a 3GB hard drive, 64MB of RAM, CD-ROM drive, floppy drive, 56k modem, sound card and speakers, colour monitor (no tube size given), Windows 98 and Office 2000. Price? £139.

Second is an “Internet Ready 233MHz system” (typical trade description, similar to those “First to see will buy” car adverts) with a 2GB (yes, two!) hard drive, CD-ROM, floppy, sound card and speakers, keyboard and mouse and Windows 98 and Office 97. Price for this masterpiece of technology? £170.

Finally, yet another Internet Ready example in the form of a Pentium system with the obligatory CD-ROM, modem and sound card and speakers; 14in SVGA colour monitor, keyboard and mouse and Windows 98 and Office 97. Price, a must have at £99…. If you want a larger monitor there’s a 17in SVGA digital colour monitor at £60.

I make no other observations other than the fact that someone, somewhere seems to have a ready supply of somewhat elderly systems at prices to make your eyes water, plus the fact that the telephone number listed is from a district in a large city on the banks of a river flowing into the sea south of the county of Lancashire.

To put the above into perspective, another advertiser offers an Xbox with 10 new games, two controllers and DVD remote for £250 (claimed as having cost more than £600 new); a second a Pentium 133MHz system with 1.8GB HDD, 32MB RAM, CD-ROM, floppy, 1MB graphics card, sound card, 14in monitor, Windows 98, Office 2000 and speakers for £60 and a third a Samsung 900MHz laptop with 128MB of RAM, 10GB hard drive, Windows XP and case for £180 (or near offer!).

  christmascracker 09:28 29 May 2004

I know exactly what you mean. We have quite a laugh at the ads in our local paper. Here's a couple:-

"Computer, Pentium 75mhz, 64mb ram, 20gb HDD, 15in monitor, CD reader, stereo speakers." How much do they want? £200

"IBM thinkpad. Pentium 2, 366mhz. 128ram, 6gig HDD, 13" screen, 56k modem, external floppy drive." they want £375 for this one.

  Stuartli 09:43 29 May 2004

The sad thing is that it must be worth advertising because, as they say, there's one born every minute.

In addition, for those who know very little about computer systems it would be easy to be taken in.....

  christmascracker 10:05 29 May 2004

Very true. The second hand shops are just as bad too, but I suppose you do at least get some sort of guarantee if bought from a shop, usually only 3 months though.

  Stuartli 10:16 29 May 2004

...more clear that the advertisements I've detailed above are from the classified section (i.e. small ads) of the paper concerned under the heading Computers/Games and not display form.

  spuds 20:45 29 May 2004

If you want to buy some modern technology, can can always click here

  Stuartli 08:42 30 May 2004

Sadly EasyJet doesn't fly that far...:-)

  spuds 11:15 30 May 2004

can can=Paris,France (;o))

Should have been "you can can always"..(;o))

  Stuartli 14:42 30 May 2004

Sadly I never hear you "can, can" these days - only you "can't, can't"....

  computernerdiamnot 17:15 30 May 2004

There are companies that buy old stock and the refurbish them to pass on to distrubiters aroun the country. Anyone can do it all they do is purchase a a certain amount say £20 a machine then sell it on for 100% or more profit.

There are a lot more consumers out there who know nothing about computers who think they are getting a bargain.

It is the same as cars, some people buy two smashed cars and piece them together and sell it as one at a profit.

As long as there are gullable people who will part with there cash, so there will be the ones to prosper.

  Stuartli 08:22 31 May 2004

That was what I was attempting to get across in a subtle sort of way...:-)

As for "cut and shut" cars I'd personally hang those responsible using the nearest tree.

As long as there is money involved there will always be someone exploiting the fact with a fiddle of some sort.

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