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a new computer for your business can be quite confusing. Even if you’ve gone through it before,
purchasing new technology for your office has changed. Rebates, Internet
Deals and bigger and faster systems can confuse the socks off even the most seasoned
biggest question asked is if the "bargain" Computers ($799 and under) are really a good bargain. It’s good to walk carefully in
this arena because like buying a car you should be sure to read the fine print,
and remember you always get what you pay for!
Generally the answer is NO. Rather then take up a lot of this space
dealing with the ramifications of these "disposable” PC's,
we’d like to focus on a shopping list of what we would recommend when getting
a new system. Take the time to ask questions about the components so you will
know what you’re getting.
From a Technician's standpoint the differences are obviously clear. To
the general consumer they are not going to know the difference between types of
memory or the difference between a Dual Core and a Quad Core processor. This is
where asking questions helps but don't ask more than you will comprehend, the
bottom line is it comes down to 'speed'.
|If you are in the market for a computer for
residential use you are normally better
off shopping the local Best Buy or office store.
However, if you
are looking for a business class workstation, then an "off the shelf"
computer is NOT the way to go.
Take the time to contact NTI for this type of
system. NTI provides very professional solutions that will easily meet your business
objectives particularly if you need a
computer system, that is their
or email one of our representatives and ask
QuadStation Systems. We love nothing more than doing a side by side
component comparison of one of our machines to any others on the market, they do
not come even close.
you will need to have an idea of the processor speed you want. Primarily it
comes down to Dual Core and Quad Core. Xeon (zeon) we believe will eventually
drop off as a consumer class processor and remain in the server space. Decide
on a processor based on where you are in your current needs and future needs
with regard to speed as it all comes down to the processor.
We recommend buying a little ahead of what you need, so your computer does not become obsolete
too soon. No matter how much you
resist, you’ll be drawn into talking about Ram, Gigabyte and other components with any friends you know that have computers. So it is important to have
a basic understanding of processor speed.
Processor is the primary component of speed in your PC.
This is the speed at which your computer "processes" numbers (which is
all it does...0's and 1's remember) There are a handful of PC Processor
companies, but Intel is the driving force. Far and away the
leader in the industry and NTI's preferred processor.
Intel stringently tests all of their processors and they are designed
specifically to operate at optimum performance up to their designated
DO NOT OVERCLOCK ! 'Overclocking' any
Intel Processor outside its normal range of operation, not only voids the
Intel warranty on your processor but also your motherboard
as well as shortening the lifespan on both! Ask Intel they will tell you. Many
companies including the major box makers are still overclocking their Intel
processors despite the voided warranty fact, it is unbelievable.
NTI never overclocks our processors,
because it is totally unnecessary. If you need more speed, use a faster
processor, it is that simple.
To prevent voiding all Intel warranties on a
system that you are building or you are having built by someone else, click here
to verify Intel's designated clock speeds on today's newest processors. >>>
MOTHERBOARD – The motherboard
is the main circuit board in your system and it is vital that it cooperates in
perfect harmony with all other components used in the system. In a perfect world
you would use an Intel motherboard as well as an Intel processor with high
quality memory (NTI's standard in all of our systems since 1995).
If you are buying a system from a retail chain you
will rarely if ever have a choice in the manufacturer of the motherboard so no
point in really asking. And don't be fooled by advertisements touting "Intel
Inside". Although it may be true that there is an Intel processor
inside the machine, what you are not told is that it could be sitting on a non
Intel or generic
motherboard! All the major box makers will normally use
whichever motherboard is cheapest at that time.
only authorizes certain motherboards to be compatible with their chips.
The fact that most vendors don't use compatible motherboards
is the number one reason for computer "lock-ups" generally caused by incompatibility
between processor and motherboard. At
NTI we ONLY use Intel
motherboards with Intel
processors.....guaranteed to be compatible.
CARD – The graphics adapter card provides the 'display signal' to
your monitors. If you have an off the shelf type PC like a Dell or other, you
may have a video card built onto the motherboard. If you are purchasing a system
from NTI it is more than likely a multi monitor display system in which case it
will have a separate
multiple display video card
speaking the standard video is more than
enough. If you are into 3D gaming, video capturing or high end graphic of photo
design, you may want to consider a better video card. If the purpose of your
system is solely for business use, such as a stock trading computer, a multi
monitor video card is a must.
DRIVE – Your
hard drive is your storage capacity. This is the place
where all of your programs and data are stored. Because of this, It is a good
idea to get a
dependable large storage device. You want a large hard drive because
software programs that are being introduced on the market today are getting larger and larger.
The operating system alone could take up to 1000mg of hard drive space then you
have to install all of your programs on top of that it takes up even
(RAM) – The amount of memory in your machine will is one determining
factor in how
fast things will run when you have several programs open at once. Get a system with
at least 8G of fast, high quality memory such as Kingston. Memory
speeds up the way the computer switches between programs when working in Windows.
Those trade offs include fonts, graphics, and opening
documents in your programs.
Keep in mind that different
motherboards use different types of memory. So if you have an older PC and you
want to upgrade to a faster processor that may require a newer motherboard which
may use a different type of memory.
Windows 7, Windows XP and Windows Vista
32 bit versions will
only recognize a maximum of 3G of memory despite what anyone tells
you. It is a very common misconception that you can have 4G of ram but that is
simply not true. You can install it but it will just sit there unused and
unrecognized. In fact in our lab tests we found that any memory over and above
what is seen actually slows the system down as the operating system has no idea
how to handle this unused memory. Don't take our word for it, this comes
straight from Microsoft, we called them to confirm this. More detail on memory
DVDRW DRIVES– The standard CD-ROM drive has gone by the wayside
for the most part as most new system come standard with a DVDRW (burner) drive
which is backwards compatible all the way back to the CDrom. (more on
DVDRW or CDRW allows the user to copy information to a DVD or CD disc
also known as 'burning' a disk. You can create music CD’s, archive data files, backups, and
store pictures on DVDs and CD’s. There are many manufacturers fo DVD and CD-Writers. When shopping, check for the
burn speeds, connectivity and technology used to prevent what is called 'Buffer Underrun'.
DRIVE – In the old days, a standard drive in most PC's but not
anymore. Most new desktops and laptops are skipping
the floppy drive as a standard item.
It is slowly becoming obsolete so it is now seen as an accessory. The floppy is
being replaced with USB ports with the prevalence of large capacity USB pen
– There are many monitor companies on the market such as ViewSonic, AOC, and
Samsung to name a few. The old standard CRT displays are becoming obsolete and
replaced with more streamlined and sleek LCD flat panels. With LCDs size does
matter but there are other factors to consider
with respect to monitor details. Resolution, screen size, contrast ration,
aspect ratio, and brightness are the things you will be comparing when shopping
for a new LCD. Keep in mind it is easy to overthink the details particularly
with LCDs. Most are good enough for general use but if you have a profession
that requires you to stare and a screen all day, pay the extra money and
get good LCDs. The easiest way to compare side by side is to walk into your
local Best Buy or Circuit City type store and you will see the differences for
or NOTEBOOK– This is a very common dilemma. The decision really
comes down your personal needs. Would you like or do you have the need for the
portability of a laptop? When traveling, do you want to take your information
with you or need to check your email when you are away? If you have 2 homes and would
prefer to transport a lightweight laptop rather than your much heavier desktop,
then maybe that is the way to go.
you don't have the need for portability, then having a large monitor for easier viewing, a big
keyboard for easier typing is definitely more comfortable to use. It may
also be more cost efficient as a laptop is quite a bit more
expensive. If you are a business user the choice is
simple...laptop all the way.
When shopping for a laptop don't be fooled by the $899 deals out there. The
old cliche holds true, "you get what you pay for". A notebook in this
price range will probably have a much lower class processor such as an AMD or
even Celeron, and generic motherboard. If you are going to invest in a notebook,
buy high quality. Notebooks are not as easy to upgrade as desktops so get the
best one you can afford.
– There is nothing worse than fighting a mouse cursor of a cheap mouse. Most
computers come with a USB mouse as of 2011.
The new Optical mouse which incorporates a Laser Light instead of a mouse
ball, is much more dependable and accurate. For graphic design or photo editing
the Optical is a must as it will allow you to move in much more precise
increments. This can also be a welcome addition to the PC since the balls tend
to get lint and other dirt into the roller mechanisms causing the mouse to stick.
– If you are in the market for a new computer, you want to make sure it has at
lease 4 or more USB
ports. USB will allow you to plug devices into it for the quickest
and easiest setup. Most of the newer
devices are designed with USB connectors, Scanners, Cameras, Mice, Modems,
Joysticks etc. USB is now the standard as devices require faster
throughput that USB provides (12 to 400mbps transfer rate). Also see
How Fast is
USB 3.0 vs 2.0
– With the advent of high speed internet the 56k modem is fast becoming
obsolete. High speed DSL and cable modems connect directly to your PC via either
CAT5 or USB. Unless you send and receive faxes from your computer there is no
need for a modem in your computer.
CARD – Again the quality of
the component should be directly proportionate to your personal use. If you
enjoy listening to music over your computer as you work, or you are a hard core
gamer then spend and extra bucks on a better sound card, otherwise a basic sound
card will be just fine.
No matter what, ask for the highest quality
components on every level, you will never regret it. Buy more than you need
right now because you will grow into it later and the technology in your system
will last much longer. For the highest quality computer systems available
worldwide, look at
QuadStation multiple screen computers. If you appreciate quality,
there is nothing better...period.