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Choosing a replacement computer system

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by howard.a.s, Apr 6, 2013.

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  1. howard.a.s

    howard.a.s Thread Starter

    Jul 22, 2005
    I am looking to renew my desktop PC and also my laptop computer, but am working to a tight budget. I am looking for a bargain, while at the same time trying to remain conscious of the fact that I'd like to replace the equipment I am currently using with machines of a better spec.

    My current desktop is a Patriot 5420, running Windows XP Home with SP3, with an Intel Pentium 4 processor 540 3.2GHz, 1gb DDR, 320GB HDD, 16x DVD +- R/RW (double layer) and Integrated SIS Mirage graphics. This machine is roughly 6 years old.

    My current laptop is an Aries (Watford Electronics) Green 732, running Windows XP Home SP2, with an Intel Pentium 4 2.53GHz, 512MB, 60GB HDD, CDRW, DVDROM. This machine is roughly 10 years old.

    I do not intend to use either machine for serious gaming, but would like to be able to play dvds without the picture being choppy. Mostly I shall use the machines for compiling web pages, uploading/downloading webpages, running applications such as Topstyle Pro, Dreamweaver, Photoshop, Flash etc. I do tend to keep quite a few applications on the go at the same time, whilst looking at the web, etc. Sometimes my old machines tend to struggle with this amount of expectation, with the end result being that they can run painfully slow.

    As desktops replacements, I have been looking at the following 2 machines:


    As laptop replacement:


    Can anyone tell me whether they have personal experience of these machines, whether they are considered good, bad, or indifferent, and whether they would be considered better/faster then my current machines? I realise that I am not exactly reaching for the sky when it comes to the 2 desktops I have given as examples, and perhaps I would be advised to venture a little higher in price, but as I mentioned earlier, my budget is limited. Can anyone suggest a better spec of machine at a great price?

    I also remain unclear as to how dual core processors stack up against the Pentium 4, and whether in a dual core I would be getting something akin to the old Celeron processor, which is slower and not really what I am looking for. Also, is an AMD processor better than a Pentium or dual core? Can anyone please offer any guidance.

    I have looked around quite a bit, and have tried Ebuyer, PC World, and various others, but wasn't really blown away by anything they had in my price range - which wasn't much!

    Any genuine help and advice gratefully received. :)
  2. 1002richards

    1002richards Retired Trusted Advisor

    Jan 29, 2006
    As you're in the UK, may I suggest Which? as a good source of reliable unbiased reviews to supplement comments from TSG members?
    In case you don't know about Which? (quote) " ... we are now the largest consumer body in the UK, with over 617,000 members that subscribe to our magazine, and over 254,000 online subscribers* - and this is constantly growing." http://www.which.co.uk/about-which/who-we-are/overview/

    If you want to read individual product reviews there's a one-off charge of £1 per review.
    Laptop reviews http://www.which.co.uk/technology/computing/reviews/laptops/
    All in one PC reviews http://www.which.co.uk/technology/computing/reviews/all-in-one-pcs/

    This page though is free & rates desktop brands http://www.which.co.uk/technology/computing/reviews-ns/desktop-pcs/best-buys/

    I've no connection to Which? I'm just suggesting a source of info.

    Hope this helps?
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