I'm trying to help my parents to buy a new computer to replace their old machine (it's about 9 years old).
They only use the most basic functions like Microsoft Office programs, Picasa (to view and perform basic edits on photos), web-browsing, viewing videos (online or with DVD) and emailing. They would like this computer to last them for as long as possible (4+ years if possible).
I'm a gamer and would be confident to recommend a gaming pc but I'm not sure what to recommend for a basic system. I don't want them to get a cheap and dodgy machine but I also know they won't use all of the functionality of a machine I would be likely to recommend.
Does anyone have advice for a build that would meet their requirements? Ideally the build would be between $600-800.
Really no need to spend that much. You can put together a build much cheaper that would be sufficient.
Get a low end i3 proc, 430 w psu, use the onboard graphics, 8 GB of ram (just because it's cheap), a 500 GB hdd, (if you want to impress them invest in an SSD they will be amazed at the snappyness althou this will make it more expensive). Something of that nature would be great.
With mom and dad.if there close in distance to you if there and issue with a home build pc you could walk them through it. With a good hp or dell office line of pc. Not dell home pc. For a few dollars more you could have in home service if a part failed on the pc. The issue with pre builds coming from a tech side is the new units are very cheaply made now. Your better off buying parts yourself and building the pc yourself. If you have a micro center near you the have i3 for 99.00 and the newer g line of intel ib for under 100. Both the I and g CPU are two core units. Both have built in video. Bitxfinx has some nice cases in the 30. Range for mini atx.
I would then use one of the newer h61 mb that have the ib bios updates.
I would use one 8g ram kit. If your using the onboard ipgpu you want give the system some breathing room. With 4g dimm you get 3.2g with 32 bit os then the onboard ipgpu use from 64-512 Meg's of ram. That not a lot of free ram left for the os and aps. Drop in a 500g drive hard drive and 19.00 cd-rom. Most mini systems the 430w cosair power supply's that run about 25.00 online.
Thanks for that I'll add those as recommendations for them. It'll cost them a bit more to have a shop build it because they'll have to purchase it from somewhere near where they live. They don't want a SSD (because of cost) and already have requested a 2TB HDD. They have a huge number of photos/family videos because of the number of kids and grand-kids in the family...
Do you think it would be worth it to spend a bit more on a better processor so that it "seems faster for longer"?
Also amd apu CPU that also have built in gpu that would be good for a starter system. Myself I wait few weeks for haswell to drop and look Into one of the g haswell CPU. The newer CPU have better video chipsets built in.
Some of the leaked news says that they should be as fast or faster then nvidia 650 line of gpus.
I know you said to not put an ssd, but it was still under your budget so I decided it was worth it. And its not a 120gb like most people would suggest because it saves money and its mainly for os and office because there are no games to put on there. You can also add a monitor, mouse, keyboard and stay well within the price range.
You also have the option of going with something like a pentium or i3 (With basic tasks there will be nearly no difference between the two).