Buying a computer system/RE:RE:RE: Buying a computer system


Hi Bobbert,

Thank you very much, you give excellent advice.

Salland Computers has let me know that I can buy the HP Z800: (which now includes the FX-3800 graphics card; it costs 670 euros without that card and 786 euros with that graphics card installed) + Microsoft Windows 7 SP1 NL, Professional, OEM (installed; costs 127.50 euros) + delivery (9 euros) for 922.50 euros.

They also say that I can choose to get a 1x Quad Core X5570 processor and 8 GB of memory and buy the HP Z800 (with the FX-3800 installed) for 575 euros instead of 786 euros.

I'm not a gamer and I don't often use programs that have spectacular graphics, but I have used some programs in the past that my computer couldn't handle because of the graphics (I'm not going to completely base my decision on these few instances though). I probably require more CPU and memory than graphics. Salland Computers seems like a legitimate/trustworthy dealer.

I've also looked at some other things I need:
















What do you recommend?

I'm also not yet completely certain how much I should spend on my next computer. It looks like the above adds up to about 1150 euros. How does this compare to what I could get if I wouldn't go above 850 euros, 950 euros or 1050 euros?  

Kind regards,


The Quadro FX is certainly driving the price there; do they have any other options for a graphics adapter that don't add better than 100EUR to the price? (the Quadro isn't designed for gaming - it's meant for professional applications like CAD or Lightwave; that doesn't mean it won't play games, but GeForce is generally the better choice there)

On the memory/CPU options - the single quad core with 8GB of memory would be very competent, but spending 100EUR to double up would not be a bad idea at all, especially if you heavily multi-task.

On the monitors - I tend to suggest Dell, LG, or Samsung monitors to folks; beyond that find one that is appropriately large for your tastes and offers a high enough resolution for your needs. If you heavily multi-task I'd suggest two displays (they can be the same model or different).

On the mouse my best advice is to try out various models in person (usually computer shops should have demonstration models in-store); find what is most comfortable for your hand. If you use the computer for many hours at a time you might consider a trackball, like the Logitech M570, as it can relieve some wrist/forearm fatigue. Of the ones you linked I'd go with the Gigabyte off hand because I'm familiar with the brand more than anything else. That said, mice are pretty simple and no-name models should be just as functional as long as they aren't malfunctioning.

At 1000-1100EUR with 8 cores, 16GB of memory, and an FX 3800 you're still roughly ahead of what is offering for around 900EUR (8-12GB of memory, a single quad-core, the same 1TB hard drive, and an entry-level (but newer) GeForce card). If you could get Salland to drop the FX 3800 in lieu of something less expensive that'd probably be the most cost effective option for the Z800, otherwise the Dell XPS 8700 wouldn't be a bad choice if you wanted to save a few hundred EUR and still have good multi-tasking performance and features. Either machine should do well for you.

For example, something like this card:
Would be more similar to what Dell is offering (it's actually a model up), and should cost less than the FX 3800.

This card would be perfectly fine if you aren't intending to play demanding 3D games:

CPU-wise they'll be roughly competitive (the Dell and the Z800) - the Xeon chips in the Z800 are older and individually slightly slower than what the Dell comes with, but there are two of them which allows the machine to execute more threads in parallel (this will help multi-tasking and multi-media applications in many cases).


Buying a computer system

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I have nearly two decades of experience in IT, computer repair, and related fields and will attempt to provide the most solid, brand-agnostic advice when it comes time to purchase a new computer, or upgrade an existing machine. I can answer anything from the seemingly basic to the downright complicated - and will do my best to provide this information in a clear and concise manner.


I have been an enthusiast of PC's for many years, and can answer questions about the purchase/use of a new computer or the purchase, installation, and use of upgrades for existing computers. There probably isn't a whole lot related to the home computer that I haven't seen over the years.

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