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  1. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrjimphelps View Post
    Chances are you can get a dual video card cheap for your computer. You can plug both monitors into it, and then specify that the right one is an extension of the left one.

    I say "chances are" because I have a dual video card which I used for Windows 7, but there is no driver for my card for Windows 8. But it's no longer an issue, because I now have one big monitor rather than two small monitors. Just make sure that your dual video card is compatible with Windows 8.x, and that it will work with your computer (your computer will probably use PCI Express cards).
    Can the 1 big monitor take the place of 2 smaller monitors?
    What do you gain or lose with either configuration?

  2. #17
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    Just an update on the specs of my current 7 year old Dell Dimension 9200:

    Processor:Intel(R) Core(TM)2 CPU E6600 @ 2.40Ghz with 4 MB Cache
    Processor Speed: 2.34 Ghz
    Memory (RAM) 2048 MB (2GB Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 667 MHz)
    ATI Radeon X1300 Pro 256MB DVIVGA, TV-out

  3. #18
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    Also, just wondering why so many Desktop Systems Dell is currently selling come with Windows 7 instead of Windows 8?

    Are people as of this date still reluctant to run Windows 8?

  4. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by StevenXXXX View Post
    Also, just wondering why so many Desktop Systems Dell is currently selling come with Windows 7 instead of Windows 8?

    Are people as of this date still reluctant to run Windows 8?
    Yes, that would be an understatement, I've bought a few things form Dell and get their sales promotion email and they've prominently indicated Win 7 was still available on a wide variety of systems for quite some time. It must be working or they wouldn't keep promoting along those lines for so long.

    One big monitor just let's a person see everything a little easier without having everything maximized all the time. With a widescreen a person can put up side by side windows or word processing pages but I for one don't really utilize that much, mostly I just like things bigger so I can see them with minimal eye strain. Two monitors is still the way to go if you want to see and run two visual interfacing programs at once or have a program that lends itself to having controls on one screen and the manipulated subject on the other.
    For me that means one big one for this stuff (browser, email, RDP sessions) and two for a system running host and guest operating systems simultaneously. Where I get some crossover is with photo manipulation and video editing; traditionally two screens for the professional approach; photo or video on one, controls on another but now I find that a large screen lets me keep both on one screen and keep both subject and controls in my comfort zone for use.

  5. #20
    Silver Lounger mrjimphelps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by StevenXXXX View Post
    Can the 1 big monitor take the place of 2 smaller monitors?
    What do you gain or lose with either configuration?
    I prefer to have one big monitor rather than two small monitors, because it is a simpler setup. In fact, some programs won't expand across two monitors; you have to run them in either the left or the right monitor.

    At work I have two monitors. I run some programs in the left monitor and some in the right. That's also a nice setup, because you can maximize a program to fill up one entire monitor screen, as opposed to it filling up your total monitor square footage.

    But if I had my choice, my preference would be one great big monitor rather than two small or medium-sized monitors.

  6. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrjimphelps View Post
    But if I had my choice, my preference would be one great big monitor rather than two small or medium-sized monitors.
    So, just what is considered "one great big monitor".

  7. #22
    Silver Lounger mrjimphelps's Avatar
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    In my opinion, 24 to 26 inches would be sufficient for the one big monitor. I wouldn't want to go too much bigger than that, but that's just me.

    The bigger the monitor, the more expensive it will be. Also, the display quality has to improve as the size gets bigger, in order for it to continue to appear to you to be the same display quality.

    I'm not sure, but I would guess that your video card may max out as the monitor gets bigger and bigger -- some video cards may not support really big monitors.

  8. #23
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    Depends on eye to screen surface distance too. For traditional desktop work/play games; in the three to four feet distant range, I like 27-28" and 1920x1200 too, not so much 1920x1080, though that is acceptable. The younger the eyes the more resolution you may like, for me, 1920 is fine, for a 20-30 year old with excellent vision, might like more, 2560x1440 if I have that standard correct; everything is sharp as a tack with that resolution but also that much smaller unless the dpi is set much higher.
    Sent from Windows ME thru Opera 10.63...just before they crashe

  9. #24
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    why

    we have two 98se machines in use
    running real good
    no problems

    we have 3 winxppro systems
    not replacing them till they die
    (but back that data up regularly!)

    i would wait for win9
    or start looking at some other OS to replace microsoft with
    if they keep forcing you to use the cloud
    next they will demand taht you rent your applications instead of owning them
    and your data will be at risk out tehre instead of backed up in yuor room with you

  10. #25
    Super Moderator jwitalka's Avatar
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    start looking at some other OS to replace microsoft with
    if they keep forcing you to use the cloud
    Windows 8 doen't force you to use the cloud. Encourage - yes. Force - No. A local login doesn't require any cloud usage.

    Jerry

  11. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrjimphelps View Post
    The bigger the monitor, the more expensive it will be.
    If you don't need the hi-res, TVs will do fine for a big cheap screen. I have a 42" and 36" docked to my laptop, they were under $300 each and treat my older eyes well at 1920x1080.

  12. #27
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    You mentioned that your profession has a group contract with Dell, so you’re considering another Dell. Given the budget you stated, you can get a fine computer from a variety of sources for far less than what you have budgeted, so don’t feel married to Dell. You didn’t mention a need for significant multimedia capability or a large hard drive, so a mid-line computer feels about right for you. But, Dell has rather mediocre customization.

    I bought my first computer 14 years ago and it was a Dell. I still have it and it acts as a backup to my current computer. When it came time to replace the Dell six years ago I saw the same problem I see today, which was the lack of customization. So, I designed my current computer myself and had it assembled by a small, local computer shop. I couldn’t be happier about its performance. No hardware failure of any kind, it’s quiet, and uses a relatively low amount of electricity. Sadly, that local computer shop closed last year. I’ve been working on designing a new computer to replace my current one, so I need a new assembler since I’m not interested in doing that myself.

    After doing some research I settled on two companies: AVADirect Custom Computers (http://www.avadirect.com) and Puget Custom Computers (http://www.pugetsystems.com). You can see some of their customer feedback, along with Dell, here: http://www.resellerratings.com/store/AVA_Direct , http://www.resellerratings.com/store...stom_Computers , and http://www.resellerratings.com/store/Dell . At least take a look at both of these companies and play around with their system configurators. It may be confusing because you’re working with brand name components instead of a brand name computer with unknown components. If you find the configurators too daunting, then e-mail or telephone both companies and explain what you need. They will work with you to design a computer that fits your needs.

    Both of these companies are probably going to be more expensive than a mass market computer and that’s primarily because they use brand name components, assemble in the USA, have significant, time consuming stress testing, provide you with the operating system media, offer superior customer service, and include lifetime technical support and repair labor. But, you’ll get a computer two or three times more reliable than any mass market computer, and probably quieter and more energy efficient. When you design a computer, try to design for the future, not the present. So, consider looking for a computer with a motherboard that has DVI, DisplayPort, and HDMI connections, then buy a new monitor with DisplayPort (DisplayPort is replacing DVI) or HDMI. You will then be able to connect your current monitor with DVI and the new monitor with DisplayPort or HDMI, eliminating the need for a separate video card or adapters.

    I’ve been working on a design at AVADirect that might be a good starting point for you. I have special requirements, so if you don’t like my design, it can be easily changed to fit your own needs. When using their configurator, scroll down and select the operating system first, then everything else.

    Performance Custom Computer (http://www.avadirect.com/desktop-pc-...asp?PRID=27592)

    Case: Antec, Solo II Black Mid-Tower, ATX
    Power Supply: Antec, EarthWatts EA380 Green 380W, 80+ Bronze
    Motherboard: Asus, Z-87A or Gigabyte, GA-Z87MX-D3H
    Processor: Intel, Haswell i5-4570S Quad-Core 2.9GHz – 3.6GHz, HD Graphics 4600
    CPU Cooler: No upgrade from the stock Intel cooler (included with processor)
    Memory: Kingston, 2 x 4GB, HyperX LoVo DDR3 1600MHz
    Video Card: None (Using CPU Integrated Graphics)
    SATA Hard Drive 1: Western Digital, 250GB WD Caviar Blue (WD2500AAKX)
    SATA Hard Drive 2: Western Digital, 500GB WD Caviar Green (WD5000AZRX)
    DVD Drive: Asus, DRW-24B1ST Black 24x DVD+-R/RW, SATA
    Operating System: Microsoft, Windows 8.1 Pro 64-bit Edition, OEM with Media
    Warranty: Silver Package (3 Year Limited Parts and Labor)

    The price for this is currently $939 (excluding shipping). Puget doesn’t have this design available through their website, but a similar, although slightly more advanced design, would currently cost $1,273 (excluding shipping). Both prices are well below your budget. These are computers that, if maintained properly, could conceivably last ten years.
    Last edited by cloudsandskye; 2014-02-04 at 00:05. Reason: Added second motherboard choice if first choice is not available.

  13. #28
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by StevenXXXX View Post
    Budget is about $3 - $4,000

    I am away from my office at the present. When I return, I will post the System Requirements of 1 specific Software I use which will be the most stringent System Requirements I would need.

    My 1st decision however is whether or not I want to buy another Desktop at all.
    My concern is that a Desktop may soon be something you can only see in a Museum.
    All the moronic hype about a desktop becoming redundant is just that, hype, and nothing more.
    You can buy or build a decent desktop system and be assured of it's longevity.

    Three to four thousand dollars is representative of a decent budget amount. You should have no trouble
    finding something to fill your needs. All you need to do is SHOP.

    Factor in a graphics card that can handle two monitors if that is what you want.
    Make sure you have a decently powerful PSU, nothing less than 600W. This seems to be the
    best component for store bought computer sellers to skimp on.
    A monitor that is 7 years old is TOO old and should NOT be relied upon.
    You don't need to spend over a thousand dollars on a monitor, like I do, if you don't have the serious
    graphical need for it. There are plenty of decently priced 24 to 27 inch monitors. SHOP ONLINE.


    Keep your old Dell WXP system around for all the antiquated software you don't want to replace with newer versions.
    As far as I'm concerned, Office 2003 IS seriously antiquated, keep it on the old system, but get the latest on the new system.
    *Look for replacement parts to the Dell system's hardware, as they become worn and fail.
    There will usually always be parts available, even if you have to look on Craig's List or eBay.

    Windows 7 will do just fine on your new system, despite the fact that there is nothing wrong with Windows 8/8.1.

    The antiquated software issue is your problem, I'm sure you don't expect newer OS's to be backward compatible
    with all the old crap that's out there, but you can safely & securely maintain antiquated system's irrigardless of loss of support on MS's part.
    Just be smart about it and manage it so it has minimal internet exposure, and a decent backup regimen.

    BOTTOM LINE
    The loss of XP support should not be an issue if there is software that you absolutely have to have that will not run in newer OS's.
    You've budgeted plenty to satisfy ALL your needs.
    Last edited by CLiNT; 2014-02-04 at 12:09.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Windows 8.1, 64 bit
    Motherboard: DX58SO2*Chipset: X58 Express/Intel ICH10*BIOS: SOX5820J.86A.0888.2012.0129.2203*Processor: Intel Core i7 CPU X 990
    GPU: Nvidia GTX 580*Memory: Corsair 12 GB, 4x3@1600*PSU: Corsair HX1000*Hard drives: REVO X2 160GB*OCZ VERT X3 120GB*5 mechanical storage drives (12 TB) total.

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