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Old 03-13-08, 12:28 AM   #1
mrt10x
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computer advice

So my 4 year old Sony Computer is starting to act up. The video card died a couple of weeks ago and now the power supply seems to be going. I have not kept up with computers over the last couple of years and am completely clueless on this dual core/quad core thing. I see that there are quad core compters with 2.4 ghz processors available for a good price. The current computer is a 3 ghz,, so whats the deal??
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Old 03-13-08, 12:32 AM   #2
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You'll probably get the best pricepoint with a dual core system. After that, it's up to you whether you want to go Intel or AMD. The only thing I can recommend for sure is Nvidia graphics. I replaced my nice ATI card an Nvidia card when it blew up, and I prefer it.

If you want new new, just look at a good dual core system that takes fast ddr2. The machine I use is a 3.8ghz P4 single core with 2gb ram and a nice video card, and it does the job well including gaming.
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Old 03-13-08, 01:00 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrt10x View Post
So my 4 year old Sony Computer is starting to act up. The video card died a couple of weeks ago and now the power supply seems to be going. I have not kept up with computers over the last couple of years and am completely clueless on this dual core/quad core thing. I see that there are quad core compters with 2.4 ghz processors available for a good price. The current computer is a 3 ghz,, so whats the deal??
The deal is new better architecture. So even thought Hz wise they are "slower" they still can get more done.
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Old 03-13-08, 09:14 AM   #4
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As you may recall, the P4 Netburst architecture was purely about marketing and high MHZ numbers. At the time, the P3 was struggling to reach 1000mhz and the P4 comes out at 1000mhz+ easily. However, on a MHZ-to-MHZ comparison, the P4 was about 25-40% slower than the P3 and could only make up for it through sheer brute force. The P4 really sucked at floating-point operations compared to the P3 or AMD chips. No wonder an AMD Athlon at 2hz could easily trounce a P4 at 3ghz.

Now it has come around full-circle. The wicked-fast PentiumM and current Core chips are based upon the P3 architecture and can do more operations per clock than the P4. A current 2.4ghz quad-core chip is about 3-5x faster than a 3ghz P4 depending upon the task and software-optimization. My DVD->Divx conversions has gone from 10-hours on a 2ghz P4 to just over 5-minutes with a 3ghz 8-core computer.
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Old 03-13-08, 12:20 PM   #5
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Thanks Danno.. that is what I was looking for. I dont ask too much of my computer.. just sick of it locking up and giving me trouble on some games.
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Old 03-13-08, 01:43 PM   #6
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Hmm... locking-up computers typically don't have anything to do with speed really. It's more of a software-conflict issue. Having too many things installed and too many background processes running will often cause something to step on top of something else and you have a crash.

People will typically buy a new computer which works great out of the box. However, they start loading it up with more and more stuff; some of marginal quality downloaded off the internet, rolling their computers closer and closer towards the overloaded crashing state. Then they go out and buy another clean new computer and start the process over again... over and over....

My recommendation here is usually to wipe the hard-drive clean and install a virgin copy of Windows. Then ONLY load the 3-5 software packages you use most. In business offices, it's very simple to create policies on what gets installed on a computer. Pretty much every software-package can be tracked to productivity and profit. It it doesn't generate income for the business, it doesn't belong on the computer.

There are great imaging/backup packages like Ghost or Acronis that lets you back up an entire disk-partition. You can freeze your computer's state in time and restore in the future. So you can save an image of a working computer before installing each software package. Then if it starts crashing, restore the entire disk from the backup-image.
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