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Thread: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

  1. #21
    Member terryansimon's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    if you know absolutely nothing when it comes to computers, and reading up on it is akin to asking you to go back to school and do ten assignments... then get a "branded" PC. if not, a DIY one will be awesome.

    a "branded" computer offers you support services for up to x duration, during which if the proverbial sh*t really does hit the fan, you don't have to lug the whole system down to some shop whilst you're being squeezed by bargain hunters looking to find that awesome graphic card that will make their gaming experience 2% more lifelike. the trade off for this however, is the initial outlay that you will be making, plus the inability to be upgrading your parts at a later time frame without being held for ransom by the "brand". that being said, you could always feign ignorance due to you not knowing what is out there on the market, owing to you knowing absolutely nothing for computers!

    and while DIY parts tend to have their warranties as well, I'm pretty certain that you would need to ship them out to different parts of the world to get them serviced/fixed/replaced. that wouldn't be much of a concern to you since the probability of a part break down is <0.05 but as with life, one can never be too sure.

    do weigh up the pros and cons, and if you're not sure, just yell out for some help. I'm sure there will be people who will be more than willing to help you. (= I'll be doing that soon at the end of the year, to replace the one I've got back in Singapore due to a lightning strike shorting everything (either that or a gecko thought it would be warmer in my computer and shorted the damn thing).
    Last edited by terryansimon; 28th August 2008 at 08:15 AM.

  2. #22
    Senior Member Sion's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    Quote Originally Posted by terryansimon View Post
    if you know absolutely nothing when it comes to computers, and reading up on it is akin to asking you to go back to school and do ten assignments... then get a "branded" PC. if not, a DIY one will be awesome.
    My friend assembled his PC with DIY parts with the help of the net.

    He must be quite good at it now because he assembled two more after the first one for his children.

  3. #23
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    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    I was also contemplating to built my own, and after doing all the homework and get the complete spec ready, I decided to get a reasonably good laptop (ASUS F9SG) and connect it to a good screen for more serious Photoshop work.........saves space, and you can bring the laptop outside too.

    ASUS also has a smaller U2 with a 12 inch OLED screen

    I bough t a Samsung 245T screen with HDMI, the ASUS F9SG has an HDMI connection.......it has a good videocard (Nividia GeForce 9300, they gave me free upgrade to 4 GB memory. (The video card has its own 256MB memory)

    The screen sits in its box still, haven't got the time to connect both :-)

    HS
    Last edited by hongsien; 28th August 2008 at 11:48 AM.

  4. #24
    Senior Member Sion's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    Quote Originally Posted by hongsien View Post
    I was also contemplating to built my own, and after doing all the homework and get the complete spec ready, I decided to get a reasonably good laptop (ASUS F9SG) and connect it to a good screen for more serious Photoshop work.........saves space, and you can bring the laptop outside too.

    ASUS also has a smaller U2 with a 12 inch OLED screen

    I bough t a Samsung 245T screen with HDMI, the ASUS F9SG has an HDMI connection.......it has a good videocard (Nividia GeForce 9300, they gave me free upgrade to 4 GB memory. (The video card has its own 256MB memory)

    The screen sits in its box still, haven't got the time to connect both :-)

    HS
    I bought a new ASUS Intel Core 2 Duo 2.66ghz with 4Gb Ram and 500Gb HD from ebay.

    I checked the total price of parts I needed to assemble it and found that the price was almost the same. This is not to mention the opportunity cost of spending the time to assemble it instead of shooting.
    Last edited by Sion; 28th August 2008 at 01:00 PM.

  5. #25
    Senior Member sammy888's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    Quote Originally Posted by ExplorerZ View Post
    actually as of few years back, i don really see that significant saving for DIY PC, "branded" PC espcially dell and acer have kinda match up the price you would get from simlim. Do note that LCD and OS also add up to a significant cost of the whole system which many fails to include in their budget, this 2 can easily sum up $500 or more.

    Only few plus i see from DIY would probably be the fun and flexibility factor with all parts choosen and assemble by yourself. but if any of the parts fail within warranty period, you gotta send them to their respective service center, there will be no "one-stop" service center as in the case of branded PC.
    I tend to look at it this way....when I am upgrading my PC. The usual scenario for me is the monitor last a long time. (my longest is 10yrs and counting for a Mag17inche which I use as a backup to my new wide screen 22") so I am not really going to worry about costing in a new monitor and the OS well I am using Window XP and I just install that into my new system.

    So the only things I am really looking to upgrade are parts that goes inside my PC casing. And since the casing I invested in is a good sturdy one, that will see me through at least 2 sets of internat upgrade in it's life time which can be at least 5 yrs. So with what I upgrade internally...no way a branded new PC will be able to compete with that ....PLUS..I am now getting all the BRANDED parts inside.

    On the note about buying branded parts, I have always believe and still do, that if you do your research well and pick the right ones abeit maybe pay alittle more, it is rare any of them gives problem. In the last 10 yrs alone, I have yet to return or send a part in for servicing or exchange. The only problem I face could be compatibility problem or some weird thing that happen when using it with certain applications. But those are all software problem. Nothing alittle online updating or tweaking can't solve it.

    And if you are buying a whole new system? Granted there is a likelihood the price for one DIY system will be about the same or alittle more then a Branded PC. BUt with my setup, I have a PC with branded reputable parts as oppose to a Brand PC manufacturer who may be getting parts from the lowest cost suppliers or slightly outdated component when they cut corners to get the price down. Of course this is not an avenue for the noobies.. You have to at least have a relatively good idea as to what you are doing and getting into. Anyway..that's just me.
    Last edited by sammy888; 28th August 2008 at 01:41 PM.

  6. #26
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    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    Quote Originally Posted by sammy888 View Post
    I tend to look at it this way....when I am upgrading my PC. The usual scenario for me is the monitor last a long time. (my longest is 10yrs and counting for a Mag17inche which I use as a backup to my new wide screen 22") so I am not really going to worry about costing in a new monitor and the OS well I am using Window XP and I just install that into my new system.

    So the only things I am really looking to upgrade are parts that goes inside my PC casing. And since the casing I invested in is a good sturdy one, that will see me through at least 2 sets of internat upgrade in it's life time which can be at least 5 yrs. So with what I upgrade internally...no way a branded new PC will be able to compete with that ....PLUS..I am now getting all the BRANDED parts inside.

    On the note about buying branded parts, I have always believe and still do, that if you do your research well and pick the right ones abeit maybe pay alittle more, it is rare any of them gives problem. In the last 10 yrs alone, I have yet to return or send a part in for servicing or exchange. The only problem I face could be compatibility problem or some weird thing that happen when using it with certain applications. But those are all software problem. Nothing alittle online updating or tweaking can't solve it.

    And if you are buying a whole new system? Granted there is a likelihood the price for one will be about the same or alittle more then a Branded PC. BUt with my setup, I have a PC with branded reputable parts as oppose to a Brand PC manufacture who may be getting parts from the lowest cost supplier. Of course this is not an avenue for the noobies.. You have to at least have a relatively good idea as to what you are doing and getting into. Anyway..that's just me.
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  7. #27
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    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    For those who don't know how to DIY and want the SLS people to install the parts, do keep in mind that some shops only help to install the MB, CPU, HDD and Optical Drives, those small cables that connects to the casing LED, casing speaker, reset button etc they might not do it for you and you still need to refer to the MB Manual.

    For those of you installing the 32 bit Windows, go for 3GB RAM max, 32-bit Windows max support up to 3.12GB RAM.

    Read this from MS
    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/929605
    Last edited by Jaycelim; 28th August 2008 at 09:19 PM.

  8. #28

    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    Quote Originally Posted by vince123123 View Post
    There are two meanings when you hear people say they are "building their own PC".

    Some just select the parts and leave it to the SLS shop to assemble and install OS (most do so at no extra charge).

    Others select the parts and actually do the assembly and installation of OS themselves.

    In my view, you should select the parts and leave it to the SLS shop to assemble. Since there is no extra charge, might as well leave the grunt work to them. If they short anything during installation, its not your problem It will however be good to closely monitor what they are doing as they work, because some shops would "throw" away the spart parts that come with your motherboard into their common pile of "spares". I had to retrieve some of these when the uncle decided to contribute my spares to the common pool.
    Just realised the Sim Lim shop that assembled my PC for me kept the extra SATA cable for my motherboard! Now I cant install the hard disk I bought at Comex!

    Careful guys, check carefully that all the spares are returned to you next time you deal with these SLS morons.

  9. #29
    vince123123
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    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    Yup my point precisely, they may kapo your spare parts to put into their pool. I had to stop the fella and he even dare to act blur :P

  10. #30
    vince123123
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    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    They should do those casing leads too, at least Fuwell does.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jaycelim View Post
    For those who don't know how to DIY and want the SLS people to install the parts, do keep in mind that some shops only help to install the MB, CPU, HDD and Optical Drives, those small cables that connects to the casing LED, casing speaker, reset button etc they might not do it for you and you still need to refer to the MB Manual.

    For those of you installing the 32 bit Windows, go for 3GB RAM max, 32-bit Windows max support up to 3.12GB RAM.

    Read this from MS
    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/929605

  11. #31
    vince123123
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    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    spare cables, spare screws, spare optional addons etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by Del_CtrlnoAlt View Post
    they're called Fuwell mah... 福井...

    btw, what spare parts? common well?

  12. #32

    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    Generally no as pc rather outdated as laptop becomes more powerful, but to make this worthwhile, do what you love. If you’re doing something you enjoy, something you consider fun, then the cost of your time is not a factor

  13. #33
    vince123123
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    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    pc outdate as laptop become more powerful? PC will always lead as far as price vs power is concerned. laptops shd only be used for mobility purposes and nothing else.

  14. #34
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    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    Quote Originally Posted by AcueMedia View Post
    Generally no as pc rather outdated as laptop becomes more powerful, but to make this worthwhile, do what you love. If you’re doing something you enjoy, something you consider fun, then the cost of your time is not a factor
    laptop get powerful, desktop will be very powerful by then... desktop will always be a step higher when it comes to performance until the day no manufactor make desktop.

    Its just like PnS and dSLR, PnS, if a PnS can get noiseless ISO1600, dSLR will yield you noiseless ISO6400... etc

  15. #35
    vince123123
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    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    My point exactly. They fulfil different roles. Poeple who get laptop for gaming AT HOME, are seriously weird.

    Quote Originally Posted by ExplorerZ View Post
    laptop get powerful, desktop will be very powerful by then... desktop will always be a step higher when it comes to performance until the day no manufactor make desktop.

    Its just like PnS and dSLR, PnS, if a PnS can get noiseless ISO1600, dSLR will yield you noiseless ISO6400... etc

  16. #36
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    can tell me more about how to get more than 4GB RAM for a PC platform, in a more layman term?

    I need to replace my current system very soon.

    thank you.
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  17. #37
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    Quote Originally Posted by AcueMedia View Post
    Generally no as pc rather outdated as laptop becomes more powerful, but to make this worthwhile, do what you love. If you’re doing something you enjoy, something you consider fun, then the cost of your time is not a factor
    really? for what I know, getting a desk top is much faster, more powerful, more storage space, and of course much cheaper than a laptop.

    not forget still can get a big big screen.
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  18. #38

    Exclamation Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    By default, Windows 32bit OS only shows ~3GB of RAM even 4GB is installed. If there's a need to access the full 4GB, you've 2 choices:
    1) Use 64-bit OS, device drivers will be difficult to find
    2) Enable PAE in 32bit Windows OS. This feature is available in WinXP and Vista but not enable by default. To enabling it, please refer to the following MS article.
    http://www.microsoft.com/whdc/system...AE/PAEdrv.mspx

    Here's a quote from the above article:

    "Operating System Support. The PAE kernel is not enabled by default for systems that can support more than 4 GB of RAM.

    To boot the system and utilize PAE memory, the /PAE switch must be added to the corresponding entry in the Boot.ini file. If a problem should arise, Safe Mode may be used, which causes the system to boot using the normal kernel (support for only 4 GB of RAM) even if the /PAE switch is part of the Boot.ini file.

    The PAE mode kernel requires an Intel Architecture processor, Pentium Pro or later, more than 4 GB of RAM, and Windows 2000, Windows XP, or Windows Server 2003.

    The PAE kernel can be enabled automatically without the /PAE switch present in the boot entry if the system has DEP enabled (/NOEXECUTE switch is present) or the system processor supports hardware-enforced DEP. Presence of the /NOEXECUTE switch on a system with a processor that supports hardware-enforced DEP implies the /PAE switch. If the system processor is capable of hardware-enforced DEP and the /NOEXECUTE switch is not present in the boot entry, Windows assumes /NOEXECUTE=optin by default and enables PAE mode. For more information, see the topic "Boot Options in a Boot.ini File" in the Windows DDK.

    Enabling PAE

    To enable PAE:

    1) Locate the Boot.ini file, which is typically in the root folder (for example, C:/) and remove its Read-Only and Hidden attributes.

    2) Open the Boot.ini file with a text editor, and then add the /PAE parameter to the ARC path, as shown in the following example:

    multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)
    \WINNT="Windows ???? Datacenter Server" /PAE /basevideo /sos

    On the File menu, click Save.

    3) Restore the Read-Only attribute to the Boot.ini file."
    Last edited by i400; 29th August 2008 at 08:03 AM.

  19. #39

    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    Quote Originally Posted by i400 View Post
    By default, Windows 32bit OS only shows ~3GB of RAM even 4GB is installed. If there's a need to access the full 4GB, you've 2 choices:
    1) Use 64-bit OS, device drivers will be difficult to find
    2) Enable PAE in 32bit Windows OS. This feature is available in WinXP and Vista but not enable by default. To enabling it, please refer to the following MS article.
    http://www.microsoft.com/whdc/system...AE/PAEdrv.mspx
    Option 1 is a safe method.
    Option 2 is rather risky which i don't recommend to anyone who is not an expert in IT.

  20. #40

    Default Re: Buy a "ready made" computer or Better to DIY one?

    Now a good time to DIY because:

    1. u can build a Hi-def PC for gaming & watching Bluray movies with 7.1 True HD surround sound

    2. get AMD 9550 CPU + Giga MB FX790 chipset + DDR2 1066 memories + ATI 9870 x 2 graphic card + Blu ray drive + HDMI LCD monitor + 5.1 home sound system

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