Is it really worth it to make your own comptuer?

I was looking over the prices at Dell, and I found this one (http://configure.us.dell.com/dellstore/config.aspx?c=us&cs=19&l=en&oc=DXPS400F1&s=dhs) for less and with a monitor included. Of course, that comes with an authentic Windows copy.

My question is it really worth it to make your own computer instead of buying it assembled already? If you would count all of the shipping costs for each of the parts you would order to make your computer, it would probably be a lot more than that Dell. The Dell case is ugly, but the computer seems to be a good deal. What do you guys think?
55 answers Last reply
More about worth make comptuer
  1. if it cost more , it's because you paid for a quality component above the crap that dell uses

    I would also add, that computer can be built better for 990 at newegg in a heart beat. The only thing newegg can't offer is a 3 year extended warranty and tech help number. Those components are cheap cheap cheap. x1300.. waste of money. a 6800 for an UPGRADE of 100.. rape. The fact that you've already paid for a 1300 and pay more for a 6800 is rediculous.. it only costs 100 at newegg.. as does the x1300. you overpay atleast 100 dollars. The PSU is probably garbage and the motherboard is hacked with shoddy capacitors and disabled features. Furthermore, nothing they sell is guaruanteed. You may buy a 7800gtx.. it doesn't say they didn't underclock the card or put crap ram on it like gddr2 because they got some killer deal on a crappy run.

    I build because I like choices, and to know my computers limitations were my choice, not the vendor that squeezed every dollar out of me at my expense
  2. Quote:
    I was looking over the prices at Dell, and I found this one (http://configure.us.dell.com/dellstore/config.aspx?c=us&cs=19&l=en&oc=DXPS400F1&s=dhs) for less and with a monitor included. Of course, that comes with an authentic Windows copy.

    My question is it really worth it to make your own computer instead of buying it assembled already? If you would count all of the shipping costs for each of the parts you would order to make your computer, it would probably be a lot more than that Dell. The Dell case is ugly, but the computer seems to be a good deal. What do you guys think?


    Look at it this way:
    All cookie cutter PC that come from manufacturers and resellers come with limited tech support and usual contact warranties on the components. For users that don’t compute via ‘laze affair’ this is great.

    For those who want better components, expandability, and the have the resources to troubleshoot their systems on their own always look to build by themselves. Draw backs are no tech supports and warranties are confined to RAM’s and non-DOA contracts on eBay.

    What you gain is the geeks version of working on your car, only there is always a bigger motor to be dropped in, faster ram, and a manual for all of this is as infinite as the world wide web itself.
  3. From my personal experience, Dell has made the best cheap assembled pc that could be bought. At work, I've seen many brands come through here. Some were crap, some were okay, but Dell performed far above them all. I have heard some disturbing reports about Dell's customer service in recent months, though, but I haven't had any trouble with them.

    If you want to talk about crap computers, you have to list Gateway at the top. They are the Dodge / Ford of the PC world.

    Assassin, you are definitely right on the fact that building your own allows you to assemble better quality components than any assembly line can put together, no matter who the company is.
  4. Besides cost, there is also tech support in case something goes wrong with Windows or a component. If you are not willing to learn how to diagnose and resolves issues by yourself, then it's better to buy from Dell, or whoever.

    Building your own PC has it perks, but you gotta invest time and energy.
  5. As you've found, for the entry- to mid-level area it's getting very close. However, for the really high-end stuff (either gaming or engineering/workstation) there's still a huge rift between what you can get prebuilt and what that same money will get you DIY.

    The machine in my sig ran me ~$2500 when I built it. I looked around for the closest competetors, spec-wise. There were a few small-volume builders that made systems kinda like mine (without the 3ware controller, some with an older motherboard, etc.) starting at ~$4000. Alienware had something kinda close for a whopping $5500.

    As you can see, in some areas a little elbow grease still pays off.
  6. Quote:
    I was looking over the prices at Dell, and I found this one (http://configure.us.dell.com/dellstore/config.aspx?c=us&cs=19&l=en&oc=DXPS400F1&s=dhs) for less and with a monitor included. Of course, that comes with an authentic Windows copy.

    My question is it really worth it to make your own computer instead of buying it assembled already? If you would count all of the shipping costs for each of the parts you would order to make your computer, it would probably be a lot more than that Dell. The Dell case is ugly, but the computer seems to be a good deal. What do you guys think?


    To Dell of not to Dell, that is the question.

    My answer is and will always be, eff Dell up it's cookie-cutter-pre-made-proprietary-piece-of-crap-bunghole! No, not really, but given the choice over making my own or buying a pre-made, I'll always opt to build my own. The reasons are countless, but most importantly, for what I would consider a "good gaming machine" from Dell is something that I can (and have) built for about the same price or less than what a Dell would cost. Inevitably, anytime I've gone to the Dell site to spec out a machine, there are no pre-mades that fit the bill and I end up upgrading one part or another; as a result, this jacks up the price and finds me ordering from NewEgg or snagging parts of Ebay for a build. There is also no, "Looky at what I made!" feeling with buying off a shelf, especially when the machine rip-snorts the FPS's. Lastl but not least, anytime the machine
    bugs out, I never have to call a support line for a solution, I am able to trouble shoot the problem and fix-it myself.
  7. Another issue with ordering a prebuilt computer involves that "authentic Windows copy" you mentioned.
    Do you actually get a Windows XP disc, or is it pre-installed on the hard drive? If so, what happens if the hard drive fails? uh oh.
    I like having my OEM copy of Windows XP Service Pack 2 tucked safely away in storage. That way if I ever have any problems I can do a reinstall.
    I also know exactly what is on my hard drive, because I installed the Windows fetures I wanted, and only the additional software I wanted ... no spywear, advertising or proprietary software from Dell or some other manufacturer clogging up my hard drive space.
  8. Has nothing to do with home built, but its about Dell's. Cought this on slashdo.com pretty funny.
    http://www.theinquirer.net/?article=32550 :lol:
  9. If you don't plan to upgrade, then stick with Dell, etc. They use proprietary components on their computer that make it hard and/or expensive to upgrade.
  10. Quote:
    They are the Dodge / Ford of the PC world.


    What the hell is that supposed to mean? Dodge cars are some great cars. My family has a Dodge Durango. Only problem its given us is the computer had to be reflashed with over 60K miles on it. Fords I'm not too fond of but their trucks are pretty good.

    Yet another person who bashes American cars because of ignorance.


    To the topic at hand, you could build that Dell way cheaper or get more computer for the money. You'd just have to replace the components individually if something went wrong but most components have a 3-5 year warranty.
  11. Miecz,

    You came to an enthusiast site to ask this question?

    You are nearly 100% guaranteed to get the responses you did above. I think given the choice everyone here would build their own. As far as price vs. performance goes I would put up nearly any DIY build against a similar Dell and I guarantee that the DIY will win. Why you say?

    Some of these reasons have already been mentioned here but I will summarize:

    First - Parts Selection - The parts in a Dell are chosen because they are typically the lowest bidder with the best available OEM equipment.

    Second - That tag OEM is important. OEM Software - "Dell/Gateway/..." Windows disks usually treat you like an idiot. They typically have emergency disks that put your PC back to factory standards with no "I'll do it myself" capabilities or with any regard for your data. They also put in the OEM advertising/apps that vendors have paid for. These agreements could cause you a lot of time in removal of these items from your machine. This is called "Bloatware".

    Third - OEM Hardware - OEM Cards often have/had slower timings/memory "GPUs especially". Spec for spec a DIY is normally faster/heartier in almost all aspects because we mostly buy RETAIL.

    Fourth - Integration - This is not as much of an issue now since so many motherboards now contain a multitude of integrated devices. Usually DIYs in the past have had less integration of devices onto the Motherboard. This allowed you to trouble shoot a failure and replace the offending part while the OEMs would have to do a full MB replacement. Again this is not as much of an issue since MOST Dell machines will not ship with integrated video card. Also on integration... Many of these machines made it difficult to fully disable the onboard parts "they would still sometimes hold a DMA or IRQ" causing potential conflicts with newer hardware that was added.

    Fifth - Contrary to popular belief Warranties for some crucial parts can be BETTER in a DIY. The only difference is you have to be able to identify the failed part and go through the RMA/Cross ship yourself. For instance you will now pay extra for a Dell three year warranty. They will help you diag the problem and help you to get a "FIX" for the issue as long as it is within that three year time frame. On DIY many Hard Drives still carry a Five year warranty. You have to figure out the problem yourself and run the vendor specific diags to get the correct error code then file for an RMA/cross ship. Antec for instance really stands behind their products. I had a PSU that was beyond warranty in a "quiet" machine that all of the sudden became "LOUD". I contacted Antec and even post warranty with "NO FAILURE" they were willing to swap it out.

    To make a long post even longer - there are many other reasons that I have not yet given but these would be the main ones I think. Sorry about the LP.
  12. What everyone else said.

    If you want quality componenets, the ability to upgrade, or a mid-high end system for a lower price, then build your own. For a mid-high end system, I've found that it will almost always be cheaper to build (at the expense of the warranty).

    If you want a lower end system and don't care too much about upgrading, then you are probably better off buying a pre-made system. If this is what you want, you may want to consider keeping an eye on the Sunday paper. Now-a-day you can sometimes find something like A64 3200+, 1 gig of crap ram, 200 Gig HDD, integrated Gfx, DVD burner, monitor, printer for $450-550 after rebates. Not a bad deal. Don't plan on upgrading anything other than the Gfx though.
  13. You Wrote:
    My question is it really worth it to make your own computer instead of buying it assembled already? If you would count all of the shipping costs for each of the parts you would order to make your computer, it would probably be a lot more than that Dell. The Dell case is ugly, but the computer seems to be a good deal. What do you guys think?

    I have purchased two Dell computers, and I used to recommend them to friends and family. Last fall my daughters system died as she started college in a different state. I ordered a new Dell system for her and told them to ship it to her address and bill to mine.
    First off, when you order, they will try to talk you into a more expensive system. They tell you if you buy the bigger better shipping is free. So I got the better system, free shipping, only $100 more in theory.
    Next they shipped the system to the wrong address, mine, not hers. had to return it, two day delay while she's starting computer science class with no computer.
    Next, when I get the invoice, its for $175 more than it was supposed to be. I call Dell, the price I was quoted included two rebates. (The sales person never mentioned rebates). I ask, how do I get the rebates. They say, its past the 30 day deadline, you can't get them. Now it's only three days past, and the computer was in shipping 4 days due to wrong address the first time!
    I did manage to call the Dell rebate 1 800 number and plead my case, the guy I got, did get me the rebates.
    BTW, Dell financial charges 29 % interest, and if you are late teh late fee is more than a payment!
    Next problem, teh sounds dont work on the computer, put in a music CD and it skips, and pauses, flutters like crazy, open a window and it crawls to a stop. This things got 512 Meg and it can't play music?
    I call Tech support. Their answer "it sounds like a software propblem, We dont offer support for software" So I call Microsoft, their solution, reinstall the entire system. That only helps a little, for about two days, then its right back to the same, can't play a CD.
    My soultion, replace "On Board" sound with $9.00 pci sound card. fixes the "Software" problem.
    The system still requires tweaking every few weeks to keep it at an even usable speed.
    Next time, I build my own system since Dell will not give any usefull tech support anyways
  14. I recently built a computer for a friend who was going to but a dell so I looked at all the specs of the components and believe me you WILL be better off building your own. As long as you dont overclock everything you still have a warranty for components. In terms of support, forums like these are BETTER than customer support as most customer supports I have dealt with are rubbish. (I used to work selling computers from HP, Medion / Cybercom, Acer *shudder* and sony *bigger shudder*). These places version of customer support is if they cant fix it over the phone then you have to send in the entire PC to them and wait 2 - 6 weeks to be returned (average). In the process they will wipe your hard disk so you are laboured with loading everything off before it goezs away and that is if you can get at it in the first place.

    Back to my friend. The dell monitor they were giving away was listed at £179 and had a response time of 24ms. I found a monitor for the same price with a response time of 4ms. Something you WILL notice.

    Also to be honest, building a computer which you are not overclocking or modifying is as easy as building a lego set and as fun.

    An oem LEGAL copy of windows XP Pro is available on ebay around £45 and you will have much better/faster/appropriate equipment for the job.

    Plus once you have learned how to do it you can get the odd drink or 2 from friends by helping them build theirs. ;)
  15. When you buy a Dell/HP/Compaq etc, you're faced with another limitation in hardware... The Warranty.

    Unless you pay extra, your hardware is only covered for 90 days to a year. Meanwhile, if you buy your parts in a box, then the manufacturer covers them. So you can buy a good hard drive with a 3 to 5 year warranty and if the thing fails for no reason, you can send it back. Many RAM manufacturers offer good coverage for their memory – unless you overclock it too much. Ditto for your other components.

    Yes, this makes it a bit more complicated, since you have to maintain a file of warranty documents from all over, instead of simply screaming at Dell, whenever anything goes wrong. This is just one more ‘reward’ for the hand-builder, your responsibilities are broader, but your coverage is usually deeper, too.

    Then again, there are places that will assemble your computer from the parts you choose and buy – for a fee. This leaves your original parts warranties intact and they often offer short-term additional coverage for their workmanship, as well.

    All of that said, unless you shop the bargain parts bin, you will not be able to hand-assemble a better computer than Dell’s mass-produced units, for $500. The $720 quoted recently in Tom’s is pretty much a ‘break point’ – under that price, you may be forced to Dell.

    Be Well!
    Fireheart
  16. in my experience building your own computer allows you to control the cost of the machine. If you dont play games on your computer you can seriously cut down the cost of the processor graphics card etc instead of having to buy a premade computer that has a bunch of random software loaded on it.

    If you buy a premade computer you get the cheapest parts possible
  17. Not true. You can build a computer for $500 that will be better than a $500 Dell. Especially now days with the price wars. Its not going to be a gaming system, but neither is the Dell. And yours will be faster.
  18. Plus once you have learned how to do it you can get the odd drink or 2 from friends by helping them build theirs. ;)

    Maybe the biggest perk? 8)
  19. There is a simple response to this.

    When you part out and build your own PC... you pay for the capabilities you want, and nothing you do not.

    You will almost always get more for your buck when you buy a big manufacturere's computer. That's simple economics. But you are also paying for a great many things you may not need or want.

    A good guide is: If you find yourself on a forum, asking about building a PC, rather than at newegg pricing out the parts, you may consider the possibility that a three-year warranty with telephone support is not such a bad thing for you.
  20. Quote:

    CASE CLOSED!



    SECOND THAT MOTION!
  21. I've actually got a dell computer taht I use for gaming and I, for the most part, hate it.

    The good things:
    It's relatively quiet (most of the time),
    it's got a dvd burner,
    in the winter it can heat my room,
    it turns on most of the time.

    But I bought this system (check siggy) in November for $1450, way more than it would be for it if I had made it. I actually checked how much everything would be using the cheapest versions of these parts and it was only around 700 or 800 dollars. *note: it came with only 1 gig of ram in 4 256mb sticks, uber old and crappy stuff too.*

    When I got it, there was 3 columns of icons on my desktop, all bloatware and crap, which I promptly deleted. A month after I got it, my hard drive randomly crashed and most of the important windows files got destroyed so I couldn't boot. I was on tech support for hours upon hours trying to get it fixed. I went through 3 different people, who all took me through the same damn thing over and over again, which was trying to do a windows repair. In the end I took it into my own hands and went down to a local computer shop and they copied my hard drive over to another one and I destroyed everything and then reinstalled windows from an older winxp cd, because they didn't give me any cd. They had a "surefire" pc restoration system that uses a hidden partition that had an image of my hard drive as it was shipped on it. All I had to to was press a few buttons and it would do it all. WRONG!!!!

    Had to search forever to find the right drivers for this and for that, only just got the SM Bus drivers a few weeks ago. 2 months later, I get a package on my doorstep that has all the disks like the winxp and Sonic dvd and such, since I had asked them for it. They never helped me out one bit with it all, other than figuring out that it was royally screwed, which I had already found out, since I couldn't fix it myself.

    Now later on, I want to upgrade my computer because the 250 dollar upgrade for an underclocked ATI Radeon X600 really isn't cutting it very much anymore, well turns out that my PSU is only 310 watts, is specially made so that normal psu's dont fit, there are no connectors anywhere to connect any fans or anything, the case still makes that metallic vibrating noise and if I touch anything, my warranty is void. I installed new ram anyways, my warranty period was almost up and it's not like I really care if it breaks anymore. In the summer I'll sell it to my friend who does photography and build myself an AM2 system, which hopefully won't suck ass like this one does.

    I used to reccomend dell, back when they didn't suck so much, but nowadays, they just fail at life.

    OH one last thing, when I was with dell on the phone, I asked them if they were gonna give me a new hard drive, they basically said no. They said that in order for that to happen, I'd have to send my computer in (i'd pay for shipping), they'd have to look at it, and if it truly was broken, then they'd put in a new one and send it off, with all the crap on it that was there the first time and I'd pay for shipping the other way. It would take something like 10 weeks for them to do this, which I wasn't gonna face. They said that if I was an enterprise or something, They would send out a guy to go to my house and replace the hard drive, but have nothign on it. Tech support is most of the time useless, you get a way better answer, as well as more knowlege en case something ever happens again, and it doesnt cost anything, ever.
  22. All right, sell me on the assmebly of the computer. Let us say that I buy everything I want for the computer (Motherboard, CPU, etc), and then I have to assemble it. If I know little about computers, how long will it take to put together, and how many tricky things are there to do? Is it possible to just assemble it, place a Windows disk in it, install Windows and everything will be ok? Tell me in hours, how much time it would take to put together.

    I never put one together, but if you guys tell me that Dell motherboards are cheap, I believe you. One of the dimms burnt out on my Dell laptop, probably from gaming.
  23. build your own computer You should first read up on the subject before diving in. Learn the lingo, learn the process. Anywho has built a system before could do it the second time in a matter of 2-4 hours, maybe less if it's a simple system.. that would include installing windows..IMHO. More time will be invested if you tweak, OverClock, and visually modify your computer. It's not Legos though.. you can't just plug this stuff in and make it work, unless you know you've done it right. So read up :)
  24. Assembly time is all on you. How much prep work did you do in your analysis of parts?

    How much cable management "you should do this for case air flow" do you do?

    How adept are you at figuring out that EVERYTHING is KEYED and only really fits ONE WAY?

    It really is not hard and most here could probably from start to finish "OS installed and updated drivers" probably about two hours "again dependent on your prep time (did you get the drivers ahead of time?)".

    Three hours if you are very cautious (first time build you should be cautious).

    The assembly time for you would also include reading some of these forums which will lead you to tutorials on building your own.

    Hope this helps...
  25. Best advice on your first build is take your time - read - and have someone experienced with you during your build (make sure they actually let YOU build it).

    You also may want to know that you could run into things like Hardware conflicts "see my notes on prep work". These DO happen on occasion and that is where the Internet and forums like these are your friends.
  26. simply put, if you know how to build one then you should. first you get the satisfaction of seeing somethin you put together come to life. Second and more importantly you get to configure the system exactly the way you want it and are usually getting better componants for the money.
  27. Quote:
    If I know little about computers, how long will it take to put together, and how many tricky things are there to do? Is it possible to just assemble it, place a Windows disk in it, install Windows and everything will be ok? Tell me in hours, how much time it would take to put together.


    For a first time builder I would set aside about 1 hour to simply put all your parts together. It's not really difficult, but since you are a newbie at it , slow is the way to go. You don't want to accidentally break something during the installation process. Remember that when inserting cards, RAM the CPU heatsink fan, be firm but not forceful. Check the cables to make sure everything has been correctly and securely plugged in. Configure the drives to the proper settings, either master or slave. I think I can casually put all the parts together in 20 minutes or less. It's been a couple of years since I built a PC from the ground up.

    Once everything has been put together you insert the bootable Windows XP disk to format the hard drive(s) and install Windows. Installing Windows will take around 45 minutes, but then you'll need to get online and download all patches and updates. Don't forget the drivers for the GPU and sound card.

    In total, I think you can get your PC up and running in about 4 hours depending on how much software (games) you are going to install. That also assumes you don't run into any snags.
  28. What people seem to forget is that building a computer and getting it running is easy, it's just when things start to go wrong that it's a problem.
  29. Tomshardware has two articles from 2002 about building your own PC.

    Building Your Own PC, Part 1: Know-How for Do-It-Yourselfers - A basic overview of components.

    Building Your Own PC, Part 2: Assembly Step by Step

    The articles may be old, but the steps are the same.
  30. Quote:
    What people seem to forget is that building a computer and getting it running is easy, it's just when things start to go wrong that it's a problem.


    As I stated in the last paragraph....

    Quote:

    In total, I think you can get your PC up and running in about 4 hours depending on how much software (games) you are going to install. That also assumes you don't run into any snags.


    Also from my first post on this thread....

    Quote:

    Besides cost, there is also tech support in case something goes wrong with Windows or a component. If you are not willing to learn how to diagnose and resolves issues by yourself, then it's better to buy from Dell, or whoever.

    Building your own PC has it perks, but you gotta invest time and energy.
  31. on the flip side of the token, if you still crave the custom idea, but not the building itself, there are several custom manufacturers that will build with the same parts we do. You pay a little more to have it done than you would yourself, but that's life. MonarchComputers I priced out a better computer but alas the config won't link. Point is.. you can build with known parts and pay the same as a dell, but know what you're getting and get something BETTER.
  32. Quote:
    I was looking over the prices at Dell, and I found this one (http://configure.us.dell.com/dellstore/config.aspx?c=us&cs=19&l=en&oc=DXPS400F1&s=dhs) for less and with a monitor included. Of course, that comes with an authentic Windows copy.

    My question is it really worth it to make your own computer instead of buying it assembled already? If you would count all of the shipping costs for each of the parts you would order to make your computer, it would probably be a lot more than that Dell. The Dell case is ugly, but the computer seems to be a good deal. What do you guys think?


    Hello

    if you are a budget customer, yes, you go with dell. I find it very hard to beat with their low end pcs. but when you are looking for high end pcs , you should really do it on your own provided that you know how.

    Thanks.
  33. Quote:
    All right, sell me on the assmebly of the computer. Let us say that I buy everything I want for the computer (Motherboard, CPU, etc), and then I have to assemble it. If I know little about computers, how long will it take to put together, and how many tricky things are there to do? Is it possible to just assemble it, place a Windows disk in it, install Windows and everything will be ok? Tell me in hours, how much time it would take to put together.

    I never put one together, but if you guys tell me that Dell motherboards are cheap, I believe you. One of the dimms burnt out on my Dell laptop, probably from gaming.


    About 45 minutes.
  34. >>All right, sell me on the assmebly of the computer. Let us say that I buy everything I want for the computer (Motherboard, CPU, etc), and then I have to assemble it.<<

    Yes. You have a motherboard, CPU w/ heatsink/fan, Video card, power supply, monitor and a stick of RAM. Get a quick install guide or google everything and install these 5 components in your case. Turn it on and look for a post to the MB BIOS. Get a cd drive and a hard drive and hook 'em up. Stick in windows and load 'er up. Have Dell Customer Support holding on line while you do it.
  35. Building your own pc can actually cost alot less. For example the system you want from dell has a crappy intel dual core chip which is slow. You can get a amd chip for a good price and have alot more power. Plus you get exactly what you want when building a pc. Not what the system builder only gives you as options. And a authentic copy of windows is not a big deal since you can buy one online for 80bucks, and yes it's authentic. Plus there are sometimes serious limitations for dell or any pre build pc. Sometimes they require specific memory, thus makeing upgrading you memory limited, and sometimes costly. I'm not against buying from dell. I've done so b4, but building your own(if you know how) does have it's advantages.
  36. Quote:
    When you buy a Dell/HP/Compaq etc, you're faced with another limitation in hardware... The Warranty.

    Unless you pay extra, your hardware is only covered for 90 days to a year. Meanwhile, if you buy your parts in a box, then the manufacturer covers them. So you can buy a good hard drive with a 3 to 5 year warranty and if the thing fails for no reason, you can send it back. Many RAM manufacturers offer good coverage for their memory – unless you overclock it too much. Ditto for your other components.

    Yes, this makes it a bit more complicated, since you have to maintain a file of warranty documents from all over, instead of simply screaming at Dell, whenever anything goes wrong. This is just one more ‘reward’ for the hand-builder, your responsibilities are broader, but your coverage is usually deeper, too.

    Then again, there are places that will assemble your computer from the parts you choose and buy – for a fee.


    Yea...newegg charges $50 to build your system for you, assuming you buy all of the parts from them at the same time.
  37. Quote:
    Once everything has been put together you insert the bootable Windows XP disk to format the hard drive(s) and install Windows. Installing Windows will take around 45 minutes, but then you'll need to get online and download all patches and updates. Don't forget the drivers for the GPU and sound card.


    Okay, I'll bite. How do you guys all seem to install Windows so quickly? On the computer I just built for myself, the step of formatting the 300gig HDD (SATA 3.0Gbps, 7200RPM) alone took close to two hours. Is this abnormally long?
  38. Aside from headaches of recieving the occasional DOA product (uuugghhh), building a computer has, and always will be the best way to go.
    1: You decide exactly what you want (that your budget allows)
    2: Better prices, buying parts individualy (On sale? F*ck yes!)
    3: It's really not that difficult, after your first time around (plus, that what THG is for!)
    4: PRIDE in building something yourself... (YES, that is MY computer I built)

    ;-)
  39. Quote:
    Okay, I'll bite. How do you guys all seem to install Windows so quickly? On the computer I just built for myself, the step of formatting the 300gig HDD (SATA 3.0Gbps, 7200RPM) alone took close to two hours. Is this abnormally long?


    the install speed depends on alot of things, such as the CPU, mobo, and the speed of the CD rom drive, but yeah, over 2 hours does seem to be abnormally long for a PC with average components, I did it in about 30 min, but i wasnt at the computer the whole time, so it spent an unknown amount of time at prompt screens, I have a friend who claims under 10 min for his install
  40. Quote:
    All right, sell me on the assmebly of the computer. Let us say that I buy everything I want for the computer (Motherboard, CPU, etc), and then I have to assemble it. If I know little about computers, how long will it take to put together, and how many tricky things are there to do? Is it possible to just assemble it, place a Windows disk in it, install Windows and everything will be ok? Tell me in hours, how much time it would take to put together.

    I never put one together, but if you guys tell me that Dell motherboards are cheap, I believe you. One of the dimms burnt out on my Dell laptop, probably from gaming.


    I think there is an alternative that hasn't yet been suggested, or if it has, I missed it.

    Last winter I needed a computer in a hurry because my old one was damaged in a storm, so I bought a computer from Cyberpower with just the minimum hardware to work. The price was not much more than if I had pieced it out and built it. I didn't buy many add-ons, because the added stuff cost as much or more than I could get it at Newegg, and wasn't necessarily what I wanted anyway. I then added the hardware I wanted as I could afford it and ended up with a semi-homebuilt machine that does what I want.

    If you're new to building, this might be a good option. You get a base computer that works, the operating system loaded for you so you don't have to sweat it, and then you can add what you want for a personalized machine that fits your needs.
  41. My 52X and 7200rpm SATA I drives along with an older P4 3.0C HT can install Windows in about 25 minutes. 45 is a long time for that. You may have some config issues.
  42. Hrm. I was using a 7200RPM SATA II HDD, 2gigs of DDR2 RAM (3-3-3-6 timings), a P-4 530 (3.0 Ghz w/ HT), a BenQ DVD-RW with a 48x CD-R speed, and an Intel board based on the 925x chipset (marketed towards the enthusiast segment, and while it's a little old now, it still sells for ~$120, and has some nice features). Has pretty nice performance in gaming, so while I'm going to pop in a newer CPU at the end of July, it does pretty well for my needs. Everything is and was properly recognized in BIOS, including boot order and whatnot.

    The actual installation after it was formatted, though, took under 20mins, only the formatting took an unbelievable amount of time.
  43. Quote:
    Yea...newegg charges $50 to build your system for you, assuming you buy all of the parts from them at the same time.


    Really!? 50 dollars.. i've never seen that. how do you add that to your cart? I can't find it on their site :?
  44. I don't see the point of adding more posts only lengthening the topic with all of the same answers. So I will post this...

    I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese. I like cheese.
    Thank you.
  45. The reason why it's cheaper is because they don't buy their parts from newegg.com and zipzoomfly.com the such, they get it direct from the manufacturers.

    As to shipping and what not, zipzoomfly.com does not charge shipping and tax for most states.

    Your question of is it worth it to buy or build is up to you. If you want a full low price computer go for the Dell, if you plan on spending lots of cash go for building yourself
  46. Dell = Crap.

    Build = Fun.
  47. Cheese = Good.
  48. Thanks for your contribution Wolfman and for lengthening the thread!

    Glad to see you contributing so well in such a short time given your number of posts! I am sure it is much aprreciated!

    By the way, Although this is probably a dupe thread to many more in the past it is still good information for people coming on this site.
  49. Time for my first build was a little longer than expected b/c the 2800 bucks dropped and b/c of connecting all the little pesky case connections to the motherboard for darddrive lights powerbutton and reset buttons.. Also the bottle of wine was probally another culprit 8)
Ask a new question

Read More

Homebuilt Computer Dell Systems