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Is Building a PC Worth it?

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May 18, 2012 2:34:31 AM

Hey I have recently been looking into building a custom PC by myself, I searched all the supplies/parts I needed and it totaled out to be around $1,500 (not including keyboard, mouse, and monitor.) Once I saw this I thought to myself that I could buy a Macbook for this price! Now I know that a custom built PC would easily out-perform a Macbook any day but the thing is, I lost my last laptop so I'm in need of one any way and I thought maybe I should just get the laptop and forget the PC. If you guys wouldn't mind giving me your honest opinion, oh and I don't wanna hear any crap about Apple because I honestly don't care, I want to hear your opinion on the SITUATION not the PRODUCT. Thanks!

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a b B Homebuilt system
May 18, 2012 2:52:51 AM

Having never owned an Apple product, I can't say anything from personal experience, but many of my friends swear by them. They are always stating how Apple products are so stable and just work. Me, on the other hand, I'm pure Microsoft and having built the majority of my own systems for the past 12 years, I don't run into the MS Windows problems that my Apple swearing friends fear. Personally, I don't think it makes a difference.

You say that building a custom PC is going to give you more performance than purchasing an Apple Macbook, but you like the portability of a Macbook. The question isn't which is better, but which is more prevalent to your needs. If you need a laptop so you can do business on the move, the go ahead and get the Macbook. If access to your files/the Internet while on the move is not a requirement, the build a PC.

My $0.02

-Wolf sends
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a b B Homebuilt system
May 18, 2012 4:48:57 AM

Just curious..What were the specs of the pc you priced out, because $1500 seems like a lot. It sounds like if the Macbook meets your needs you must have priced out a pc that was much more powerful than the laptop would end up being. Its not really a fair comparison if the pc parts included a really high end graphics card, and the laptop does not. You could build a nice gaming system for $1000, and then still have $500 to buy an average laptop for your portable needs.
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May 18, 2012 4:57:53 AM

GI_JONES said:
Just curious..What were the specs of the pc you priced out, because $1500 seems like a lot. It sounds like if the Macbook meets your needs you must have priced out a pc that was much more powerful than the laptop would end up being. Its not really a fair comparison if the pc parts included a really high end graphics card, and the laptop does not. You could build a nice gaming system for $1000, and then still have $500 to buy an average laptop for your portable needs.


this ^

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May 18, 2012 5:11:46 AM

I was an apple fan for years, always lusting over the ibooks and powerbooks until i finally bit the bullet and spent ~ $4000 on a powermac G5.

Looked beautiful on the outside, well designed OS, but performed like utter shite.

We were promised huge performance gains as the new 64bit processors, but to be honest, i didn't see it.

System would barely ever wake up from sleep mode, sometimes i'd have to hardware restart it ~10 times to get it going finally. Changed the battery, cleared CMOS, new PSU, still all the same *** problems.

Long gone are the days Apples offered anything over a Windows or Linux system.

Since building on Win7, my system has run flawlessly. Far outperforms my mega-mac at literally 1/5 of the price.


GI_JONES gave some good advice there. i would recommend you putting together a list of the tasks you do on your computer and matching the hardware to that. no point in overspending on a super system if you dont use it to its potential, and no point to buy an underpowered system if you need 4/8 cores/threads.

PC FTW!
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a b B Homebuilt system
May 18, 2012 5:30:45 AM

For the money it sounds like you configured a gaming system. How well would the Macbook fulfill that role?
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May 18, 2012 5:33:42 AM

Well, we have a macbook and a PC at our place.

While i don't like the macbook too much, i'll say that GI_JONES and Wolfshadw make sense. What do you need it for? Is your current ecosystem windows based? Are you willing to spend time re-learning the OS (doesn't take much effort, but you need to put in time. I didn't take much time getting used to the basics, since they're pretty much the same as Windows, but dad hasn't really been able to get a hang of it)? WHat do you want to do with it? Because hey, if you're planning to game on it then PC is the way. If you want to do a lot of content creation, again, PC.

If you need mobility and want an Apple, get a recent SB/IB based MacBook. Otherwise at $1000+ you have an ultrabook option too (like the samsung series 9, if you're willing to spend that much).

Otherwise it's not a very direct comparison, you're almost asking us if you need a laptop or desktop, and only you can answer that, really.
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May 18, 2012 12:59:54 PM

GI_JONES said:
Just curious..What were the specs of the pc you priced out, because $1500 seems like a lot. It sounds like if the Macbook meets your needs you must have priced out a pc that was much more powerful than the laptop would end up being. Its not really a fair comparison if the pc parts included a really high end graphics card, and the laptop does not. You could build a nice gaming system for $1000, and then still have $500 to buy an average laptop for your portable needs.

Yeah ur right I was trying to build a gaming PC and it would be much better than the Mac. It had an i7 sandy bridge 3.4Ghz processor, Asus Maximus V Gene motherboard, Asus Geforce GTX 560Ti 2GB graphics card, Corsair Vengeance 16GB RAM 1600 (4x4GB), 120GB Intel 520 series cherryville ssd SATA III, Western Digital Caviar Blue 500GB 7500 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s hdd, Kingwin LZ-850 mudular power supply, all inside a Corsair 600T white.
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