Pat Delany is the owner of South Jersey Computer Pros, a Cherry Hill, New Jersey computer service company that specializes in computer repair and virus removal. And according to Delany, when it comes to buying a new computer, its not always a matter of what you should spend, but rather what you want to spend. The more bells and whistles youre looking for, the more money your new computer is going to cost.
You may finally decide to have a computer repair technician help you out after months of struggling with a poorly functioning computer. After taking one look at your machine, the technician may proceed to inform you that spending any amount of money to upgrade or fix your current computer would be a waste, at which point you may quickly decide to get on board with the idea of buying yourself a brand new computer.
If the time has come for you to replace an older computer with an updated model, then youre in luck. These days, anyone in the market for a new computer has plenty of options to choose from. In fact, when it comes to computers, its possible to spend as little as $200 or as much as $2,000 on a new model. The question is: How much should you spend?
First, keep in mind that the more expensive your machine is, the better its parts are likely to be. Lets say youre looking for a laptop to replace your outdated model. If you tend to travel for business a lot, then youll probably want a machine that is powerful, yet lightweight. What you may not realize, however, is that a lighter laptop will almost always cost more than a heavier version because it costs money to shrink the components. On the other hand, if having a lightweight laptop is going to make your life easier overall, then it may be worth it to spend the extra money. The same concept applies to desktops, too. If youre a big-time gamer, then you may want to opt for a system that offers you a fast hard drive and an upgraded video card. Both are items that you will pay for, but that will give you the gaming experience youve always wanted.
Secondly, a high-end computer is more likely to come with a better warranty than a cheaper model. Therefore, when you think about computer costs, try to remind yourself that by purchasing a cheaper model, you could end up being forced to spend money in other ways specifically, via out-of-pocket repairs and potential replacement costs.
On the other hand, some people do think that theres no harm in buying a cheaper computer and replacing it every few years. In my opinion, theres nothing wrong with this approach if youre the type of person who doesnt mind dealing with a less powerful machine. Additionally, there are certain circumstances under which it may be okay to go with a less expensive model. If youre a small business owner whos looking to replace a machine that is ultimately going to run off of a server, then you may be able to get away with opting for the budget computer of the bunch.
Of course, it also depends on what you plan to use the computer for. If your daily computer-related tasks include not much more than simple word processing and light spreadsheet and presentation work, then you may not need the same sort of power as someone who is doing heavy number crunching or programming. However, if your habits require a lot of processing power and memory, then youre going to want to spring for a better machine.
Personal Price Point
In my experience, when it comes to purchasing new computers, you get what you pay for. For this reason, my personal price point is around $1,000 for a laptop or desktop plus monitor. The logic behind this is that the average person is going to want his new computer to last for a reasonable amount of time. A $1,000 computer will probably come with a decent warranty and give you five years or so of good use. A $500 computer, on the other hand, may not last you more than two years, at which point youll have to repeat the process of searching for a new machine all over again.
No matter how much you decide to spend on your new computer, make sure to find a machine that is going to do a good job serving your basic needs.