Computer Choices – Custom Built, New or Used

When it comes time to shop for a new PC, there are certainly plenty of choices on the market, and making the right decision can at times be difficult.  One of the most difficult decisions for anyone in need of a new computer for home or work is whether to purchase a new computer, a used computer or build their own.

Let’s look at the choice between new and used first.  The ever changing technology associated with computers and laptops means that there will always be a great many used computers, of various vintages and values, on the market.  For those who know what to look for, a used computer can be a great value, but for those who are not attentive and knowledgeable a used computer can be a trap, and end up costing more than a new one in the long run.

When shopping for a used computer, perhaps the most important consideration is the age of the technology.  If the PC or laptop is more than a few years old, it may be difficult to use the latest technology with it, and it may be difficult or even impossible to upgrade.  If you plan to just read email and surf the internet, an older vintage PC may be fine.  If, on the other hand, you plan to use the PC for work, or install the hottest new games, you may want to consider buying a new PC, or at least a used PC of a later manufacture.

When looking at a new PC, it is important to know what to look for, and what signs to look for when it comes to determining the health of the PC hardware and the operating system.  If you do not have at least a passing knowledge of things like checking the event viewer, checking the hardware configuration and the like, it may be helpful to bring a computer savvy friend along when you shop.

When it comes to saving money, building your own PC used to be the best way to go, and in some cases it still is.  It is often possible to purchase all the components that make up a PC, including the hard drive, the CD or DVD burner, the modem, the video card and the like, a very low prices, especially if you take advantage of the many rebate offers that can often be found.  Putting all these components together can add up to a very low priced PC for those who have the skill to put it all together.

Even if the price differential between buying and building is not as great as it once was, there are other valid reasons for building a PC from scratch, including of course the fact that you know exactly what is in the PC.  Knowing the PC and its components so well will allow you to troubleshoot problems more effectively, and to build just the PC you want, at a price you can afford.