is always changing, evolving and improving. I don't mind showing my age
by telling you my first computer had 1K of memory, which seemed like a
lot at the time. Today, my laptop has six million times more memory for
about the same amount of inflation-adjusted dollars.
components are released, the price drops on what once was the best
computer you could get. When buying a new computer, how can you know
that you are getting a good deal?
Should you just buy the very cheapest computer
you can find? Here are some things to watch out for when a computer
deal seems too good to be true.
long will it last?
Many cheap deals are understandably for computers that have cheaper
parts. Unfortunately the likelihood of an electrical or mechanical
failure in these cheaper components can be comparatively high.
Remember, you may be sacrificing quality for a lower initial purchase
The cheapest computers available at retail are only cheap because the
manufacturers are not making any profit. As a result, they tend to cut
corners with flimsy plastic parts and cheap processors that either are
sluggish in performance or not very efficient (inefficient processors
use more electricity and therefore produce more heat, which in turn
reduces the life of the computer). We suggest you consider spending just
a little bit more, which will save you money and aggravation over the
What kind of
warranty comes with it?
If you can
increase the warranty to more than just one year, it is money well
spent. We have seen computer components fail after just 12 months.
Check the warranty details to see if you have to send the computer away
for repair, or if they will come to you or even post you a replacement
Computers purchased at retail almost always include a one year warranty.
We generally recommend business grade computers with a manufacturer
warranty of three or more years.
Does it have
software like Microsoft Windows can be found on the internet for a
fraction of the retail price. However, chances are it is a copy and
does not have its own original, unique license. Microsoft is
implementing increased security measures to ensure that only genuine
software licenses have access to software updates and extra features
(like Office templates). In the future, illegal copies of software may
expire and be rendered unusable.
Will it run
games or my other software?
the biggest problems with cheaper computers is how well they handle the
display processing for your monitor.
You may have
a great screen, but without the computer having ‘3D’ graphics
capability, you may find you can’t run games like World of Warcraft or
Counter Strike. You’ll also have the same problem running software for
house or garden design.
Can I add
things to it later?
you may only type letters and send a few emails. But what if you get a
digital camera for your birthday or you see some great new software?
Your computer needs room to grow as you push it to do more and more.
Some cheap computers come with the absolute bare minimum of components
and may not physically be able to read additional memory (RAM) or have
space for new devices like DVD-writers. Also, older components, like
some motherboards, may not be compatible with newer devices.
happening in technology lately?
continues to evolve the Windows operating system, from XP to Vista to
Windows 7, and Windows 8. They also continue to evolve the
popular Office suites, from Office 2003 to Office 2007, Office 2010 and
new versions require more memory and disk space than older versions, but
this is not always the case. Windows 7 and Office 2010 were more stable,
streamlined, and user friendly than their immediate predecessors (Vista
and Office 2010), for example.
Contact us about
how we can put these
and other tips into action for you.