Recommendation with reasons
Dell as of right now is number one.
I have been ordering Dell XP boxes right up until last week and I have bought around 6 since Jan 1. The Vostro PC line is inexpensive overall, works very well, has REAL XP CD with it, something not even the Gateway did as of the last one I bought. Some were Core2Duo most were Pentium Dual Core. For standard office work, the PDC works just fine.
If you are looking to play games, do intensive photo work or video encoding, then a much higher end unit is required.
But for 80% of users, a basic unit is fine.
All were ordered with a 160 MIN HD, 1 gig ram, DVD RW and a 19" Widescreen with XP PRO. The prices vary from day to day but the price is usually around 625.00 including Tax. W/O Pro 525.00
Is their standard tech support the greatest, well maybe not, but it is light years ahead of HP/Compaq. Gold tech support is outstanding.
Before the ACER purchase I would have gone with Gateway as 2nd, now I have no idea as to their build quality.
HP/Compaq is OK but I never liked the RESTORE disk method, having had to do several Restores for customers, the options of Format or no Format is a might on the limited side, as there is no REPAIR or recovery console available. And if you didn't burn yours to begin with and the hard drive fails, you will be paying for a set from HP and waiting a few days.
Lenovo(IBM) Bought one for a customer with decent specs; they were happy with it, but I could see it ran substantially slower than others with even slower CPU. Would never buy another.
Emachine - Although they are on the cheap side, I have sold several of these and so far (years have passed) none have died that I know about. They are less expensive and tech support is not bad. The one time I called I got a rep in UTAH and he was very helpful. (Spoke English and knew what he was doing.)
Sony - worked on a few - didn't care for all the crap that was "sony" tagged and you couldn't remove without screwing up something.
I have built a lot of PC's myself for myself and for others (approx 300) So I am not a novice to this. My own PCs will run faster and usually more smoothly than anything off the shelf. That being said, I at this point, would most likely have to weigh the benefits of a custom PC to a Dell and then add anything I might want.
Dell is expensive when adding extras such as a 2nd drive or more ram, but you have to realize that if everyone bought just the basic unit and nothing else, they would raise the price or go broke.
I have priced like Hardware from Dell and HP and almost always the Dell is less expensive, so for me it's just a Dell.
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