Help Me Choose a New Computer!

The Internet - A guide for women(Source, edited)

I’m quite attached to my current laptop, my first completely new computer since I bought this one in 1994, or this one my parents bought for my sister and I in 1982. But now at 6 years-old, with only 1(!) functioning USB port, a screen that can no longer fold down, noisily sitting on some (very very necessary) external cooling fans, and regularly crashing if it has more than a dozen tabs open (let alone if I’m playing a game), it’s high-time to make a clean break. As a friend put it, it’s just ridiculous that someone who spends so much time writing on a computer every day would be still using it.

Unfortunately though, that doesn’t mean I know *cough* anything whatsoever about hardware, so I’d really appreciate readers’ help with what kind of specs I should be looking for, and/or websites to order the final product from.

In a nutshell, I want something that will last me, say, 4-5 years, and which 90% of the time I’ll be using just for writing, surfing the internet, watching movies, and making Powerpoint presentations, and perhaps 10% of the time I’ll use for not very demanding games like Minecraft.

More specifically, I’m after: a desktop PC this time (I already have a netbook and smartphone); a widescreen (I’m just loving my wife’s 23inch one); and Windows 7 (no way am I ready for a touch screen and Windows 8!).

My wife recently ordered her computer from ExKorea and had no problems with them (you provide your specs, they bang it together and send it), while I happily ordered my netbook from Hacker. But I’m open to other possibilities.

Thanks in advance for any help!

Update: With apologies to their fans, please don’t recommend that I switch to a Mac, and/or install something like Linux — I just don’t have the time or inclination sorry!

13 thoughts on “Help Me Choose a New Computer!

  1. Hi James,
    considering your specs, I would go for a pc equipped with a 3rd Generation Intel Core processor with Intel HD4000 integrated graphics, choosen among those with a low TDP figure (e.g. the i7-3770T or i7-3770S) to achieve low consumption and low temperature without big/fast fans (so less noise too). For the hard disk, I would avoid either SSDs (the technology is not fully mature, IMHO) than “green” drives (they often have bad performances). Just go for a fast one (e.g. Western Digital Black Serie or similar). Complete it with a 23″ or 24″ FullHD monitor (IPS panels seem to have some advantages, multiple inputs are useful, (e.g. HDMI,..)) and a BluRay writer.
    For keyboard and mouse I’m old fashioned, I still use corded ones (no batteries, usually quicker response) so don’t take my words for it, I’ve have used a 15 years old IBM keyboard with mechanical switches until 1 year ago (that was noisy!). For the OS, I usually adopt professional versions (W7 Pro), anyway be sure to have your workstation configured with a simple user account (beside the administrator) that you can use 99.9% of the time. This greatly improves your protection from external threats, but I would add ESET Nod32 antivirus for additional security.

  2. If you need something in a hurry, contact this guy on Craigslist.

    If you need something more, swing by Gmarket, search for HP Computers, sort by Desktop set. I see a few, but they’re pricy.
    And you run into the “No English Windows on Korean computers” problem, I think that problem is still ongoing- so if you want English OS you have to buy from a western firm.

    • There’s no rush, but thanks. And, with no offense meant to you or that seller, after a bad experience buying a second-hand lap-top once (the battery didn’t work at all), I don’t think I’ll ever be buying anything without a warranty and so on again.

      I don’t think I’ll run into to “No English Windows” problem though: you can select the language on all but one version of Windows 7. The one that you can’t choose it on is Windows 7 Starter, which, naturally enough, is the one installed on my netbook.

  3. I don’t know if you found a computer yet, but if you are still looking? In June I purchased a Dell, Windows 7, Intel core i5,6gb ram,1TB,HD ,23′ Screen Desktop.I enjoy it very much.It also has DVD player/recoder(takes both +/-). Its my favorite computer that I have had. I had 5 before this one. I hope that helps.

    • As it turns out, I *ahem* decided to put off buying a new one until this one became so bad as to be unusable…which unfortunately is roundabout now — am seriously, finally, buying a new one next week, just as soon as a round of editing work I have to get done is finished (about all my computer is capable of handling by this stage). So thanks — your advice is actually very very timely!

      • Oh gosh. You are welcome.. I know how that is. It took me forever. My computer actually died,before I got this new one. Yeah ,this computer is pretty cool.It’s very quiet. I do pretty much the sames that you do with it,with the exception of powerpoint presentations. It is pretty fast(I don’t save anything on it,I use external hard drives for that. Oh it has 2.0 usb slots. Has HDMI slot. I don’t know what else to mention.. I hope you can find it or one like it. I have never been as pleased with a computer..Ok take care.

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