New Desktop Computer c. £500

16 replies
Found 6th Apr 2006

I'm looking to get another desktop computer. I've got about £500 to spend, and I need a full system. Ideally, I'd like an AMD Ath 64 3000+, with some ram and a 256MB graphics card. Key requirement is that is it very quiet - my current computer sounds like a train! A "gamer" case with pretty lights would not be unwelcome.

Any advice on the best and cheapest people to look at? Dell seems pretty good, but I'm not sure how upgradable they are, and no idea how the Dell intergrated graphics performs on games. Also looking at ebay and a couple of other websites, but to be honest, not really a clue who balances cheapness and quality the best nowadays.

Also, best to wait for Easter sales?


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i've just bought the dell 5150 (see on their website) and i'm gonna upgrade it myself for gaming - the gaming machine on their website are toooo dear for me. It had the free upgrade to the 19" TFT, but i selected a DVI input monitor, so got it for £510, but i'm gonna spend another £200ish on it to get it gaming ready...... can't wait for unreal tournament 2007!!!

can't wait for [url]www.projectoffset.com[/url] and [url]www.spore.com[/url] (watch videos of both, amazing)

Hi Redders..

If you're thinking about Dell it's worthwhile checking out this website as they post all the best deals



Original Poster

Thanks for the replies. So are Dells pretty easy to upgrade? I should be able to plug in a new graphics card and go right?

I'm a big fan of Novatech [url]www.novatech.co.uk[/url] and buy all my PC related stuff from them (unless Amazon have a better deal).

novatech.co.uk/nov…42T With XP it's about £430 so you then have to factor in the price of a monitor.

Original Poster

This one looks pretty good - it's probably the one I'm going to go for unless someone has seen a better spec for less



Hi Redders..If you're thinking about Dell it's worthwhile checking out … Hi Redders..If you're thinking about Dell it's worthwhile checking out this website as they post all the best dealshttp://www.dmxdimension.com/blogsection/dell_uk_special_offers.htmlHelen

They take the good ones from here but other than that... If you want the best deals on a Dell HUKD is the right place to be. MikeT is one of the best Dell deal hunters and he keeps everyone up to date on any fantastic offers.

Hi if you are "good" with computers then i suggest you build your own so that you can get all the components to your own requirements, because if you buy a full system then you may only get half of what you want ie. either a good graphics card or a good processor. and builing it your self should also save at least £100 for a decent system. Also with your demand for flashy lights - not many big companies supply those with their systems.

for cheap computer components i recommend - [url]www.ebuyer.com[/url] - very reliable and most parts come with garuntee.
for some more choice you should also visit [url]www.dabs.com[/url] and [url]www.savastore.co.uk[/url]

ps. £500 for a new system with those specs seem a bit on the small side i think that you should at least be looking at £600 for a decent system

Hope this helps

if you have anymore questions regarding this please PM me as i rarely go on this part of the forum

Original Poster

Thanks for the reply. I think I want a full system as I built my current computer - hence the reason it sounds like a train!

Dell have some good deals over Easter, but I read in this months Micro Mart that they use Dell components and are notoriously hard to upgrade. I was thinking of getting a Dell with some extra RAM and a graphics card off ebay. Will this be possible?

The key advantage of building your own is that you can select quiet components. Fully built ones are filled with crap fans/psus etc.

you can also get crap fans if you just select the cheapest fans. fork out for few extra pounds and the difference can be heard.

In my experience, people who recommend the build-your-own route haven't purchased an entire system in recent times, and therefore have no basis for comparison.

The Dell 5150 is a very quiet system at a very attractive price. I accept that buying an entire system means that you can't hand pick the components you want, but then again, I no longer have the time to read through 100s of reviews to find out which components I want.

I think that, for the majority of people, they will find a suitable PC at a suitable price on a trip to Dixons/PCWorld. For the more advanced users, an online outlet usually offers the best mix of price/support/customisation, such as Dell, novatech, etc. For a small majority of users, the build-your-own is the best method.

But don't kid yourself, build-your-own is rarely cheaper than am equivalent complete system these days. Bulk purchasing by large system builders usually offsets their additional overheads for the end-customer.

yes but building your own is cheaper for sure though. could save you up to £200. on more expensive systems. And the advantage for building your own is that you can choose all the components yourself. like expedia, get your computer taylor made only it'll cost you less afterall this site is for bargain hunters

Original Poster

The actual computer is much cheaper building your own. My problem is I need a monitor too, and Dell throwing in a 19" every now and then saves me a fortune. I think I'm going to wait for something similiar to the £429 offer they had earlier in the month

No. MikeT, help me explain that BYO is not always cheaper than complete systems.

Original Poster

Ok. Thinking of going for plunge this weekend. Can someone comment onthe upgradability of Dells? Their upgrades are outrageously expensive, so I'd rather by some extra RAM etc from arianet or somewhere similar...
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