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Old 05-31-2009, 09:39 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Slw Desktop... would an upgrade help?

I have a friend that has a Dell desktop Dimension 8400 with a Pentium 4. It has 3.80GHz with 1.00GB of RAM.

He has a problem with trying to process large Excel spreadsheets that apparently contain arrays. It is taking up to 5 -7 minutes to work through his calculations in the spreadsheets. He asked me if he should buy a new more powerful desktop or laptop.

I suggested he look into upgrading his current desktop first before buying a new one. Does anyone have an insight as to whether or not upgrading his Dell 8400 would solve his problem. If so what would he upgrade on his current desktop.

Thanks for any help.
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Old 05-31-2009, 09:41 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Slw Desktop... would an upgrade help?

Upgrading that machine will be really limited. The most you could do is upgrade the RAM, and that would be mostly pointless in this case. It's time for a new build.

Get a budget and what sort of stuff he wants to do, and we can price you out something.
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Old 05-31-2009, 09:49 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Slw Desktop... would an upgrade help?.....here is what he says he wants to run

Here is what my friend said he was willing to do if he could not upgrade his current Dell.............

To reiterate, Im looking for blazing fast processing speed when using Microsoft Windows. The applications that Id like to run faster are Excel and Quicken, for the most part. Im willing to spend something more than the usual money to get that speed

Thanks for any advice......
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Old 05-31-2009, 09:53 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Slw Desktop... would an upgrade help?

You could spend under 500 bucks and get "blazing fast speed" with those apps, so we need a bit more info. :P Does he do any gaming? Does he need a monitor? And what sort of budget does he have ballpark?
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Old 05-31-2009, 09:58 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Slw Desktop... would an upgrade help more information

He doesn't do any gaming.

I don't think he needs a new monitor but I am sure he would be willing to buy one if he did.

As to budget, I would guess anywhere between $1,000 and $2,500 would be OK with him. He spends alot of time on his computer so he would opt for the best results over price.

Thanks.
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Old 05-31-2009, 10:01 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Slw Desktop... would an upgrade help?

Well, you could easily go i7 with that budget. But I'm trying to figure out if he really needs that much processing power.

Does he do anything graphically intensive? Photoshop, rendering, etc?
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Old 05-31-2009, 10:21 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Slw Desktop... would an upgrade help? What he does

He basically processes lots of data. For example, he has some very complex spreadsheets that has information in from years ago. He continuously updates this information. One spreadsheet has information in it that he has kept track of for over 20 years. He recently added more information and it is taking longer and longer to run. He also has other spreadsheets that take a long time to run.

It would potentially seem to be a RAM issue given the size of his spreadsheets. If he fills up the RAM he could be spending alot of seek time going back and forth to the hard drive.

He is really good at Excel so it would not seem to be a logic issue but something that results from not having enough memory. I question if it would be processing speed.

Again thanks for help.
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Old 05-31-2009, 10:40 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Slw Desktop... would an upgrade help?

Alright, well. Since you don't need i7 processing power, I think we should focus on him being comfortable with his work space. You can still get a quad core for processing power, and 4gb of RAM. But I would recommend two big monitors for multi-tasking. Maybe dual 22" monitors.

Also, what size HDD do you think he'd like?
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Old 06-01-2009, 07:58 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Slw Desktop... would an upgrade help?

Might want to get a SSD with that kind of budget. Load the programs he uses on that, and use another regular hard drive for anything else (photos ect).
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Old 06-01-2009, 10:27 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Slw Desktop... would an upgrade help?

Alright, I have a tentative build here for you.

Newegg.com - AMD Phenom II X4 940 Deneb 3.0GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache Socket AM2&#43; 125W Quad-Core Black Edition Processor - Processors - Desktops
Newegg.com - BIOSTAR TFORCE TA790GX 128M AM3&#47;AM2&#43;&#47;AM2 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard - AMD Motherboards
Newegg.com - G.SKILL 4GB &#40;2 x 2GB&#41; 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 &#40;PC2 6400&#41; Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Desktop Memory
Newegg.com - Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb&#47;s 3.5&#34; Internal Hard Drive - Internal Hard Drives
Newegg.com - SAPPHIRE 100265HDMI Radeon HD 4830 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Desktop Graphics / Video Cards
Newegg.com - Computer Parts, PC Components, Laptop Computers, Digital Cameras and more!
Newegg.com - LG Black 22X &#40;CAV&#41; DVD&#43;R 8X DVD&#43;RW 16X DVD&#43;R DL 22X &#40;CAV&#41; DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA 22X DVD&#177;R DVD Burner - CD / DVD Burners
(2 of these) Newegg.com - Acer X223Wbd Black 22&#34; 5ms Widescreen LCD Monitor 300 cd&#47;m2 2500&#58;1 - LCD Monitors

Total comes to $972.17 with shipping, then you get 20 bucks back in MIRs.

Dual monitors for multitasking, a video card to handle it, etc.

If he decides to only get one monitor, we can bump it to a 24" and just use onboard video.
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Poizen22 - in all honesty id prefetr my pics get passed around then send perform some homo erotic sexual deed.
thirdshiftdj - what on earth are you trying to say???
I do not accept support questions via EMail, PM or IM.
If I helped you out, or what I just said rocked you like a hurricane, hit the little thingie over there.
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