Network Chico new computer
recommendations (circa ~2006)
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- Intel Dual-core or greater @ 3.8 GHz or higher
- AMD FX-62 CPU or higher
Intel processors are still the most popular but the AMD products
are just as good and can sometimes even be slightly faster for
some tasks. The difference is only slight and so not really that
important. Speed is obviously the biggest concern and it never
hurts to spend a little more for a faster processor such as a
3.7GHz CPU, but once again this isn't a huge difference. For
most home 3.0GHz will be plenty fast enough.
RAM: 512MB is the bare
minimum these days and 1024MB is better. Most current computers
can use 2GB or more. More RAM is always better.
Hard drive: 80GB is the
minimum these days. 180GB is better, and many PCs are shipping
with 250GB or even 500GB hard drives. However additional hard
drives can usually be added to a computer and they also make
external hard drives as well.
CD/DVD: Some sort of optical
drive that can burn a CD-ROM is standard these days. The ability
to burn a DVD is a great option and is becoming much more common.
DVD/CD-RW combo drives are popular now and have the ability to
burn a CD as well as play a DVD, though not burn one.
Video card: Unless games
and high-end graphics are a priority generally computer systems
today come with at least 64MB of video ram on an AGP bus. Cards
are available today with as much as 512MB and I would expect
to see 1GB cards soon.
Monitor: Flat panel displays
are all the rage these days which has made traditional monitors
quite inexpensive. The flat panels are easier on the eyes and
obviously take up less space. If money is of little concern a
flat panel is a nice option.
Printer: The choice of
a printer depends largely on what will be printed. Basic inexpensive
printers are fine for letters and simple documents. High quality
photos require higher quality and thus more expensive printers.
Though the secret to getting truly good photos from any printer
is to use high quality photo paper, preferably from the same
manufacturer as the printer. (ie. Epson paper for Epson printers,
HP for HP, etc.)
Sound: In general the
sound card included with most systems should be fine for the
home or business user, unless of course one were in the music
Tip: Protect your new computer with security
software such as firewall,
anti-virus and anti-spyware.