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Replacing desktop PC - $500 budget - Main reason for upgrade, MAKING music....


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#1 smoketwibz

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Posted 04 February 2014 - 06:11 AM

Currently, I have running a Gateway 830GM desktop PC with 2GB DDR Ram, 600GB hard drive, and rest is basically OEM.  It's running Windows XP SP3 and it gets the job done. 

 

I produce music as a hobby.  I use Sonar 8.5 Producer Edition with a lot of extra virtual instruments installed.  Some of the more high-end instruments use up just about all of the RAM that is available, which makes it almost impossible to use more than one instrument simultaneously.  I want to be able to use these more powerful instruments, and my current setup isn't allowing for that. 

 

I have a $500 dollar budget and I am looking to purchase a desktop that is capable of handling audio production software.  But, that is not the only purpose the computer.  I sometimes try to put together compilations of video, I like image manipulation, and I have over a terabyte of music that I compiled over the years scatter about on my hard drive, external hard drive, and other emergency internal backup hard drives from much older computers. 

 

Any help would be appreciated. 

 

What is better equipped to run audio production software?  Windows 7 or Windows 8 

 

Do computers still come with Windows OS disks?  I would definitely prefer to have an actual Windows OS disk.

 

I'm fairly competent of making these decisions on my own, but I just wanted to a few opinions from random people that have a better understand than myself.  

 

Thank you!



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#2 GreenGiant117

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Posted 04 February 2014 - 02:25 PM

... 

 

What is better equipped to run audio production software?  Windows 7 or Windows 8 

 

Do computers still come with Windows OS disks?  I would definitely prefer to have an actual Windows OS disk.

 

...

 

Either would be fine for it, its just a matter of support and what you prefer for an interface, they both function very much the same.

 

They do if you assemble them yourself, other than that you'll have to use the computer to create a system restore disc, not very hard but can be annoying.

 

Keeping with Gateway (not the best but not the worst) this one may be a good choice, the RAM is expandable, and there are 3 open PCI-E slots (two x1's and one x16) for later adding of a sound card.

Not any space that I can see for more hard drives though.



#3 Kilroy

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Posted 04 February 2014 - 04:37 PM

If you're willing to consider a refurbished machine HP ENVY Intel Core i5 12GB DDR3 1TB HDD Capacity Desktop PC 700-027c

 

I have an issue with the Gateway that GreenGiant117 suggested, the memory configuration is wild.  It is two 4GB sticks and one 2GB stick with one slot open.



#4 GreenGiant117

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Posted 06 February 2014 - 04:40 PM

If you're willing to consider a refurbished machine HP ENVY Intel Core i5 12GB DDR3 1TB HDD Capacity Desktop PC 700-027c

 

I have an issue with the Gateway that GreenGiant117 suggested, the memory configuration is wild.  It is two 4GB sticks and one 2GB stick with one slot open.

 

Thats not so uncommon of a RAM setup, I've seen 6GB setups either be 3 sticks of 2 or more commonly a stick of 4 and a stick of 2, thats just adding another 4GB, the one you listed is either 2 4's and 2 2's or 3 4's, either way, thats a decent computer as well, I'd buy that over the gateway.



#5 Kilroy

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Posted 07 February 2014 - 01:22 PM

I've just grown used to using matched sets of RAM.  I fill the first bank with the same spec RAM and if I fill the second it matches the first.  Just used to the days when your RAM had to be matched pairs.

 

Yes, now that you mention it, is probably has 3x4GB with one slot open.



#6 OldPhil

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Posted 08 February 2014 - 05:00 PM

IMO a very nice find!  It will do everything he wants and more.


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#7 White_Zombie

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Posted 07 March 2014 - 12:22 AM

If you buy an Acer or Gateway make sure you aren't buying a desktop with proprietary parts in it. They have been using impossible to replace or upgrade PSU's and Motherboards in some of their models lately.

 

Here is a list of the models I've seen so far:

http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/t/526746/you-may-wish-to-avoid-these-specific-desktop-models/


Edited by White_Zombie, 07 March 2014 - 12:23 AM.


#8 giggleooza

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Posted 23 July 2014 - 11:27 AM

This site has a list of affordable desktops that are good for the money http://www.squidoo.com/best-desktop-computer2 . HP Touch Smart 320-1030 is a great one for under 500 if you get a used or refurbished one. 






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