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We have a new computer!
I knew whichever machine we got, I'd be impressed with the performance. Our old main(now new backup) machine is an Acer Aspire with a flamethrowing AMD k6 300mhz processor :) It does have the 256mb RAM that fills out it's memory banks, but it really has taken us as far as it can as an everyday machine.
I hadn't kept up with the technology since that thing was bought in 1998, so I had a lot of research to do. I also had a very strict budget of $800 or less; just to complicate things. I wanted something that had enough headroom that it wouldn't be straining in a couple years and enough upgradability to extend it's useful life when the 'stock' config was hitting a ceiling.
I ended up with an eMachines T3265. Their offerings the past couple years are far better than the, well, trash, they had put out previously. This machine has more and cost less than pretty much anything I had priced out. With AMD AthlonXP 3200+ 2.2ghz processor, 160gb hard drive, 1 x 512mb RAM, CDRW & DVD+/-RW drives, 400mhz FSB...it was above and beyond what I was looking for.
I can upgrade it to 2gig of RAM, and it has an AGP slot for better video. The box itself is very sturdy and the multimedia/internet keyboard feels good to the touch as well.
The speakers and (especially) mouse aren't anything special; but we already had the peripherals so that really didn't matter. We are using the eMachines keyboard. The 'special' keys don't have a high-end feel to them but the regular 'keyboard keys' have a nice feel and sound. It does use older 2700 memory that operates at 333mhz, so it doesn't take advantage of the 400mhz bus.But for $750, it's a whole lot of machine for the money; and it's essentially a mainstream PC at budget prices. If you're in the market for something at this level, definitely take a look. EMachines was recently bought by Gateway; the guy credited with turning eMachines around is now heading the whole affair so maybe we'll see some improvement in Gateway equipement down the line. http://www.emachines.com/products/products.html?prod=eMachines_T3265
From Tiger Direct:
Last upated: 7/27/04