Month: March 2014
Should It Stay or Should It Go
A frequent computer question I help people with is, “should I fix my old computer or buy a new one?” If you are reading this, you may be at that point and trying to make a decision. You may have paid quite a bit for your current computer and feel like you should be able to get a few more good years out of it before casting it aside. With so many different systems out there it’s difficult to have a hard and fast rule as to when to replace a system. Not everyone needs high performance. However, “Do Not Resuscitate” should be the guideline for any system that was originally purchased with windows XP installed. Pulling your data off should be the limit of any work done on this old of a model. If you are currently using a system like this be sure to have a backup of your data because the hard drive is likely the first thing to go.
Here’s an example of a common machine that I see: the Intel Core 2 Duo. Many versions of this processor were made starting in 2006 and ending about 2011 so there are a lot of them out there. Early on systems utilizing this processor had Windows XP, then Windows Vista, and some at the tail end even got Windows 7. The processor has been out of production for nearly three years now. Benchmarks between an inexpensive ($300) Lenovo desktop computer utilizing a current Intel Pentium G3220 processor, and the old Core 2 Duo E4200 show 170% better performance. The new computer is able to do this while using only 65% of the power. A more detailed comparison can be found here: cpu-world.com. The new system comes with a new 500 gb hard drive, gigabit network port, far superior graphics, and the ability to run multiple monitors. So if you are poking along with a Core 2 duo, then an up-to-date low-end system could really surprise you performance wise. The upgrade is certainly worth considering before spending anything on maintenance for your current computer.