Advice for a new desktop.


My dell experience involved Alienware.

I got the laptop, it was fun for a year or 2. Then something got lodged in the fan. The case is such that i couldn’t open it myself, so I had to get them to do it.

This is where things went wrong.

I specifically told them to:

  1. open case
  2. remove obstruction
  3. replace case.

had they not used these horrible screws that were so soft i couldn’t put a normal screwdriver into the head, I could have done it myself in 2 minutes.

It took them 2 weeks to pick the machine up.

They then decided to downgrade my windows 10 installation to windows 7, because it was originally shipped with windows 7.

Their explanation was that anything sent to them had to be returned in it’s original state. Yeah…go figure.

For good measure, they wiped my hardrive, and then partitioned it into 2, and boot the boot drive onto C:, but decided to reduce it to 50 gb size.

Then they tried delivering me the “repaired” laptop but didn’t bother phoning me to let me know when it would come. They did that twice.

So, after much angry conversation, I got them to commit to a specific date, but they couldn’t commit to a time window.

They then missed that date, after I had spent all day indoors waiting for them.

Eventually, after about a month all told, I get back my laptop, with all my date lost except what was in the cloud.

Upgrading my Os to Windows 10 was a real challenge because of the HD size restriction.

Then they had the audacity to ask for my feedback. I told them to go fuck themselves.

I’m never buying Dell/Alienware again if I can help it.


That does sound like a nightmare and I’ll keep that in mind if I have to send this thing back for service (read: DON’T send back for service or at least pull the drives before I do).

But I’m surprised it was actually covered under warranty still after a year or two and that they’d be willing to fix something like a mechanically jammed fan. The way I figure it, when I build my own system, if something busts further out than 90 days, I’m fixing it on my own dime. In this case, I got a price that was substantially cheaper than I could price the parts out for myself and it comes with 1-year in-home service/warranty.


FWIW, my old XPS 8300 is a standard PSU. I know because I replaced it with a Seasonic when it kicked the bucket recently.

I had a hell of a time with my Dell XPS13 laptop. It seemed to crash with a black screen. I’d reboot and windows would sometimes complain it didn’t boot successfully. Sometimes it wouldn’t successfully boot and I’d get the black screen again. Man, sounds really bad right? I tried repairs, restores, nothing. Decided to reinstall Windows. I’d STILL get problems.

Then I realized the display must have just been loose. I had booted successfully into windows, but I didn’t know because the screen was black. I applied a little “percussive maintenance” to the side and voila, no problems for months.


I had paid for the extended warranty :(.


Yeah, I just watched some youtube videos on the XPS 8920. Standard PSU (though mounted in an interesting swing-out cage). I may swap it out on arrival for my current PSU, which is superior to the stock one they’re giving me.


Ouch. Paid extra and got reamed. That sucks.



ymmv ofcourse.


I’ve been thinking of building a gaming rig that will last 5+ yrs… but WTF - you can’t find graphics cards in stock anywhere? What’s up with that? I was looking at a 1070 ti or 1080 ti (really not wanting to upgrade for a while).


Cryptocurrency. We were discussing in another thread. Basically it’s the damn devil and it can die in a fire and bankrupt everyone who is involved.

It’s solely responsible for you not being able to find a decent GPU.


So there’s no secret qt3 way to find a black market 1080 from the guy on the corner in a chicken suit or something?


Between the GPU shortage/overpricing and Meltdown/Spectre, a few of us are pushing off our upgrade plans for next year.

Intel should get chips that are immune to Meltdown by then. Spectre is a different issue though.

Still, it seems like if there’s ever a year to skip a hardware upgrade, this is it.


Ok, good to know. I’ll have to get into my PS4 backlog instead. :p

I just found this recent article, by the way.


How long do you think it will take for Spectre to be mitigated? (Or mostly mitigated?) I am looking at PC deals, but am hesitant since I don’t want to have to do it again in a two (?) years. The whole thing just leaves a bad taste in my mouth.



Spectre will be partially mitigated through software very quickly. Hardware, nobody knows. Maybe there’s a panacea and Intel, AMD, and ARM fix it next month. Maybe it’s 10 years. I wouldn’t wait on that.

I certainly wouldn’t purchase an Intel CPU until Meltdown is fixed. But Spectre is unavoidable for now.


If you really want / need one, shop around on the manufacturer refurb sites.

Dell Outlet has an Inspiron RX 580 computer for $820 - the card itself sells for $600 at Amazon.

However all part prices are going up (memory and SSDs especially). The gaming laptop i picked up last year refurb for $1,400 is now selling new for $2,200. I could probably sell my year old windows laptop and break even if not make money.


Finally, the time has come for gaming to move on from that “3D graphics” fad.


This seems like a good choice for me, wondering what you pros think? Granted, I’ve been gaming on a Lenovo T440sThinkpad with Intel integrated graphics the past four years (which does wonders for minimizing the backlog, heh heh). I won’t do VR, not into GTA, do like my turn based strategy games so I don’t think that I need a very powerful PC, but one that could last 4 - 5 years.

SkyTech Shadow | Ryzen 3 + GTX 1060 Edition: $769

• AMD Ryzen 3 1200 CPU 3.1GHz Quad-Core
• Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 3GB
• 8GB DDR4 2400
• 24X DVD
• Windows 10 Home
• Keyboard + Mouse Included
• WiFi-Ready
• Free Lifetime Tech Support Based in U.S.


Not a pro, but going to be the first to tell you to make sure to get an SSD drive.

Damn nice price, but I’m always blasted away by the American pricing!


I had no idea these were so much faster than a HDD. Thanks for the suggestion @Left_Empty. They do not appear to be too difficult to install, and keeping the HDD means I can store stuff like docs and pictures on the HDD and I may not need a very large SSD.