While browsing through the latest prices/offerings at newegg.com, I became confused by similiar hard drives with different prices. Some were listed as 'OEM' and others as 'Retail'. What's the difference and which would you recommend for a soon-to-be first time builder like myself?
Retail is like going to a computer store and getting a drive that is in a box, has manual, tools disk, etc......
Oem is getting just the drive. No cables, power cables, manual, nothing but the drive..
The drive comes shipped, wrapped in bubble wrap in a box filled with packing peanuts.
Same drive just different packing.
So as a newbie, is it safe to assume that I really don't need the manual or and that I can just research and order whatever cables that I would need with the drive? (I must confess that I don't even know what the 'tools disk' is...do I absolutely need it???)
Generally, there is one more difference. When you buy retail, the retailer has the responsibility of return policy and sometimes, support. When you buy OEM, these things fall to the manufacturer or to you.
For instance, if you purchase a hard drive and right out of the box it has bad sectors, if you bought it retail (from Fry's, for example), you can return it to Fry's and get another one. If you bought OEM, the retailer whom you bought it from is perfectly within their rights to make you go through the manufacturer's RMA process to get a new drive.
Support can work the same way. If you purchase a retail box Microsoft Windows Vista, and you have problems installing or working with it, you can call Microsoft for support. If you bought OEM, you cannot get support from Microsoft, because to them, your OEM manufacturer has support responsibility. (For example, if Toshiba loads Windows Vista on their laptop, Toshiba bought OEM copies of Vista from Microsoft, and when a customer has a problem, they must call and deal with Toshiba. Microsoft won't support them.) By buying OEM, you're shifting the support responsibility to yourself.
Thanks for the speedy reply's, guys. I think I'll be going with OEM and buying the rounded SATA cables. (I'll have 2 or 3 SATA hard drives with my set-up...)
I was hoping to ask you a question regarding the length of SATA cables that I'll need with the P182 case. I'm looking at ordering the 18" cables (rather than the 24") with the assumption that 18" will be more than enough length for easy cable management. What do you think?
Also (and this is probably an ultra-newbie question) I am assuming that the right angle connector will plug to the device and the straight connector to the motherboard to facilitate easy connection and removal. Do I have this correct?
Don't rush when your putting everything in. Take your time, read the manual and make sure everything is seated good.
Once you have the cpu, memory and video card you can do a test run on the computer. Go into the bios and watch the cpu temp for about 15 minutes to make sure the heatsink is cooling correctly.
When installing windows I have found its best to only put in the hardware needed to run: cpu, memory, 1 hard drive, 1 cd-rom, and video card.
Once windows is up and running then put in any other additional cards you have one at a time with a reboot between each install.
Takes more time but will also allow you to know what messed up if something goes wrong.