Choosing a new PC for home office use

  GemmaPen 09:12 27 Sep 2005

I'm trying to find an affordable PC (including monitor) for home office use & have no idea where to start!

I am looking to spend between £500 and £1,000 - is it worth investing a bit extra now to get a better performance?

Can anyone recommend a particular brand that is reliable - I have been advised against Dell but that's all the advice I have at the moment!


  Diemmess 09:40 27 Sep 2005

It is important to decide what applications/purposes you will be using, because that will dictate the facilities the computer must have.

Home implies anything from serious extension of work..... to games and internet only?

Is the family of all ages to use it?

  GemmaPen 10:04 27 Sep 2005

My husband and I manage our business (bathroom design) from home and therefore use the main Office programs (Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint etc) as well as Sage accounting software. The PC also needs to be suitable for a fast Broadband connection. We may need to install design software (e.g. CAD) in the future for business purposes and also a stock control/point of sale system like Sage Paypoint.

So our requirements are mainly business related - only the internet will be used for personal use.

  Diemmess 10:21 27 Sep 2005

That's fine, my attitude is that you might choose a mid-range computer, shunning the budget end because it will tend to have fascilities trimmed away to keep the price down.

Avoid the top speed very high video spec. which is only necessary for serious game-playing.

Perhaps spend on extra RAM and a good monitor, good HD size.

Probably best to avoid bundled software, you already have licensed MS Office? I would feel more comfortable if you bought your own full version of Windows, though by all means let the vendor install it for you.

Don't dismiss Dell on hearsay, there are advantages in dealing with a big player.

  Diodorus Siculus 10:44 27 Sep 2005

And please, please put in place a good backup routine early on - PCs are reliable but have been known to go wrong.

It's easy to set up a free backup program to copy your data from the hard drive to an external drive each day - mine runs at 11pm and the PC turns off at midnight.

  Jackcoms 14:20 27 Sep 2005

"I have been advised against Dell"

On what basis?

As Diemmess says "Don't dismiss Dell on hearsay, there are advantages in dealing with a big player".

They are THE biggest player and, whilst not building the cheapest PCs, they do build robust, reliable, long-lasting machines which usually come with all the latest bells and whistles and the ability to 'personalise' your PC on-line before buying.

  Sirpad 11:58 28 Sep 2005

for what Dell machine to heavy Outlook user and internet user and kids will want to play games like Simm etc (but no real action games).

  Giggle n' Bits 11:40 01 Oct 2005

a strong system.

  Echo1 15:07 02 Oct 2005

I've recently bought a Dell (Dimension 3000). I'm over the moon with it, too.

It isn't for games. I have my consoles for that. What I got is good (I don't care to spend less and build my own system). A P4 2.8gig with 256mb ram and 80 gig HDD, DVD/CD burner, printer, a standard 17" CRT monitor and basic USB keyboard and mouse.

It does what I want it to (I could use more RAM, mind) and runs at a decent speed.

My mom has also bought a similar model and is happy with hers.

Don't listen to folk who right off Dell.

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