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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have had a call from my girlfirnds boss and hes going to be wanting the it support much earlier than expected, Hes got 3pcs that he wants upgrading.. not sure what yet till i get a look at them, and he wants 2 more pcs (new ones) so now with the prices is it cheaper for a self build or cheaper to buy from dell etc??

I am gonna have a sit down with him see what he needs and wants, but i think its just to run some client database systems etc etc.

I wont touch stuff like packard bell from pc world etc as i had one once and it was so slow out of the box because of all the pre loaded c***, Are Dells the same??

Thats the main reason i build my own pcs, as i install what i want and buy what parts i need etc

Cheers

Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Also with this been a business i presume they can claim the VAT back for all the purchases... if that makes a difference
 

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on an equivalent system you can still outprice dell on separate parts

i priced a pc up the other day and even included things like upgraded ram and still beat them on price.

then it just depends on how much you charge to put it together
 

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If it was for a client I would probably go for Dell or similar. Purley
because you get the support and you wont get hassled after. Personally
I would build - as is my current PC as you can get a decent spec and
save quite a bit (100s?). The thing is - if you havnt set something up
properly or something breaksdown(Lead not plugged in properly etc) it
might be hassle to fix the problem!

Just my 2p worth.
 

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My belief is that if you want something cheap, go to PC World or Dell. Out of the two I'd pick Dell by far, they are pretty quick to adopt the latest technologies (LGA775, DDR2, SATA...) and the builds are very neat, much better than HP/Compaq. Those companies buy parts in massive quantities and it's hard to match them like for like. If it's not a huge number, I'll still build, and if it's for a friend or myself that wants something special, I'll always build. Other than that I can't be bothered with the hassle. Having said that a lot of my daily work involves doing builds, I get lumbered with them because I'm quite fussy, and my company believes it offers better PCs than Dell. I once went to work on a Saturday to build and test 7 PCs, that was really mind-numbing, and we've just got an order from a client for 40 PCs, plus servers. I think I'll keep myself well occupied with the server builds...
 

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If you know he'll give you a few bob if anything goes wrong and that you won't drop everything to run over do it yourself.. Take a mag with you or look on a website (HP or something expensive) then when you know what the prices are say I'll see what I can do.

Remember even if he is a nice bloke, he's only coming to you as he thinks he can save a few quid. So put a fair bit on for xmas!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Remember even if he is a nice bloke, he's only coming to you as he thinks he can save a few quid. So put a fair bit on for xmas!
Yeah he is, hes paying around ?40per hour atm for the tech support, but they dont cover the pcs now as its more than 3yr old...

So as i am still at uni the extra cash will come in handy... if i charge half that i still make money, he still saves money and if i do a good job, its experience and reference which will be worth more than 20quid an hour!

So in my eyes we both win [H]

Well as i said i am going up in the week to see what the crack is... See what hes got atm and what he wants also finding parts to upgrade could be a problem if i need to find old ram, or if hd size support is limited by the bios etc etc

My main concern is treading on the other techies toes though. as far as i can work out from my girly the software is bespoke to the practice... so reinstall and or problem fixing of that could be more problems than its worth
 

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as far as i can work out from my girly the software is bespoke to the practice... so reinstall and or problem fixing of that could be more problems than its worth
Bespoke software... I run a mile when that's mentioned. I've got a server now on-site, with loads of bits dangling off and it can't go in and can't come back out, because the software vendor can't get the database running on the new system. I spent ages on the phone to them until it got to the point where I could no longer waste any more time while jobs were piling up back at the office, I gave them remote access and said sort it, call us when you're ready. Not trying to put you off but I've had loads of nightmares of "special" software that clients insist on using, fair play if it's what you need, but when you can't get the support, it all falls on you. Real hassle.
 

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do you want the hassle? custom specification? If yes then build custom machines

If you want no then go to dell (get the support from them for 3yrs and
let them support )...I got fed up with the so called "homie's" and
small business user community they have a high support overhead.
 

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I just built the following spec PC for ?550.. pretty chuffed with it and it goes like the clappers:

* Biostar IDEQ 210P - Mini case + NForce3 250 chipset based board with USB2, Firewire, Onboard LAN + Audio

* AMD Sempron 3000+

* 1GB of Corsair PC3200 RAM

* 160GB Seagate Baracuda Serial ATA Drive

* Leadtek GeForce FX5200 128MB AGP Card

* Dell 17" TFT

* Black Sony FDD Drive

* Black Sony DVD-ROM Drive

* Black USB Keyboard + Black Microsoft Optical Mouse

* 256MB USB2.0 Flash Memory Key / Pen Drive

I looked around at Dell, etc and realised I could build my own PC for a
better price still than they were offering, and still use brand name /
quality parts. Thrilled to bits with it, and its such a compact and
well thought out base unit - would HIGHLY reccomend an IDEQ based box
to anyone looking to build up their own Shuttle style PC :)
 

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Speaking from experience its not worth the hassle of building a pc for someone for the following reasons: -

  • The hassle factor if the build does not go smoothly e.g. some motherboards have compatability issues with some cards / memory etc, I deciced to build a new pc for myself and it took 6months before the manufacture released a driver that worked OK. If you come across any issues like this it starts eating into your profit.
  • You can't make enough money out of building pc's (maybe 5 years ago, but now competition has driven down prices) look at dell machines, 90% of the system is built on the motherboard meaning they can really cut costs.
  • Warranty - If a motherboard for instance fails you ring up Dell or whoever and they send you another or send an engineer out, if you build a machine you have to first diagnose the problem and then replace the part, which can take time whilst you send it back to the manufacture and wait for their diagnosis.

My advice is buy from Dell, try and haggle a deal with them, stick on your margin, make a small profit on the machines and charge a little more for the support.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Bespoke software... I run a mile when that's mentioned. I've got a server now on-site, with loads of bits dangling off and it can't go in and can't come back out, because the software vendor can't get the database running on the new system. I spent ages on the phone to them until it got to the point where I could no longer waste any more time while jobs were piling up back at the office, I gave them remote access and said sort it, call us when you're ready. Not trying to put you off but I've had loads of nightmares of "special" software that clients insist on using, fair play if it's what you need, but when you can't get the support, it all falls on you. Real hassle.
That was my concern.... but worst case scenario is I upgrade the existing PCs for them... A new stick of ram cant screw it up ... can it [:$] LOL

When thinking about it logically, It may not be bespoke software... i couldnt imagine them shelling out the extra for it... but then again i could be wrong i suppose,

Bonus is, i cant be any worse than the last guy they had out, they had a trainee in from their tech support, and it took him 6hours to install a new CDRW drive into one of the systems apparently he had never installed in a "desktop PC" ie not a tower (i cant think of the name of the case) and he couldnt get the original drive out!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks for the offer w36

Its a Vets... but i imagine similar systems... apart from one with humans one with animals??
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Yeah i have googled it, but nothing that comes up rings a bell to what i was told... Well we will see
 

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do you want the hassle? custom specification? If yes then build custom machines
Agreed.

I had a bad experience from Dell, both tech and customer support (reviewed in Watchdog) so I wouldn't buy from them again.
 

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you will get a better spec, and build quality if you build them yourself, and do it right.... Your money will go further too! I have quite a lot of experience building PC's for both businesses and home users [:)] do it right and you wont have any hassle from components breaking!
 
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