Karl`s PC Help Forums

can anyone help?
the bear - 3-2-2018 at 22:53

My current PC has become very problematic, fear its at the end of its useful life. The Printer is now defunct and ready to be consigned to the tip. I needed a completely new setup, something uptodate but have no idea what to buy, if I go to PC World or the like some young erk smelling the commision on a big sale will blind me with science and wreck my head with data I totally don't understand to pressure a sale.

Information for anyone that can help.

I would need the usual email and skype programmes, not interested in Fax.

I use my PC to write stories on would need a very large storage system and would like to import material as illustrations.
A printer that is economical with the price of ink refills. A Printer that can print both sides.
A good standard of illustration reproduction
I would like an endless file to save photos to. I've been told to use something called Cloud?
I would like to start learning how to use Photoshop or the like.
I don't down load music or films.
I used to be able to to listen to American Country Music stations while I worked, I would like this facility again.
I was most happy when I had XP to work with and would need a set up that was mega user friendly.


Anyone got any ideas as to a way forward.

Regards the Bear


JackInCT - 4-2-2018 at 00:15

Have any interest in building your own? I did, and it worked, but there is an awful lot of prep work re integrating the parts from different vendors; there are kits out there that you can assemble, but just how much money, if any, they save needs to be rigorously calculated.

There may be parts like the case, the power supply, etc., that you could use in a build your own project.


JackInCT - 4-2-2018 at 17:31

By the way, all the major PC vendors sell refurbished units at a "saving" [relatively speaking]. I presume they all come with an OS, etc.,.

But then not ever one of their models will have a refurbished unit for sale; periodic checks will perhaps turn up one that you want, but since they have a limited number of them, perhaps as few as one, you've got a good deal of potential competition for one.

I don't know but I would wonder if they have some sort of a waiting list for a particular model and will notify you if/when one comes along.

Ditto these paragraphs re major online retailers & refurbished units to include discontinued models; discontinued models are sold at a discount.

A search on the vendor may not turn up anything re "discontinued models" and since they just about all have toll free numbers, a call might be worth a try. When I was looking for a new printer, the online selection only mentioned a discount, but when I called my order in, I found out it was refurbished, i. e., the actual reason for the discount (and NOT that it was a discontinued model by the manufacturer; the manufacturer never stated on their website that it was no longer available, but took my order, and followed up with an email that it was not available any longer, canceled my credit card transaction immediately, etc.). I've had no problems with it at all.


LSemmens - 5-2-2018 at 00:41

Sorry, Bear, if I were closer, I'd happily build one for you. You certainly won't need anything too powerful for your needs. I actually use a laptop for most of my stuff these days which might be worth considering.


scholar - 5-2-2018 at 02:28

I have been satisfied buying used machines from individuals who just want to get some money out of the older one when they have moved up to a new model. I have gotten them in the $100-$200 range, if I recall correctly. In the U.S., one would search craigslist.org or any of various online versions of shopping "newspapers" (they used to be free-distribution papers that consisted only of adverts, skipping the news and features portions that were in real newspapers).

I would require that the desktop system I was going to buy be powered up in front of me, and then I would see what it had on it and perhaps try out a familiar program. I accepted some risk, but got my machines cheaply, kind of like when you buy a used car from an individual.

A machine with XP on it would be cheap, but it is no longer supported. I could be happy with an old machine if it had the software on it I needed, and a printer of the same era which still had the ink cartridges available. I do OK with after-market refills, but I use black ink for all my documents.


JackInCT - 5-2-2018 at 04:39

It is feasible, as well as low cost, to turn an android smartphone into the equivalent of a desktop PC to include using a regular LCD monitor.

There are "system requirements" for the ports on the phone & monitor that need connections to one another which means the purchase of some specific cables, i. e., NOT all android phones/tablets can do this adaptation.

YouTube has vids on all of this ('connect phone to monitor' search words), to include some with the tech name of the cables.

For doing this for any length of time, a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse would be especially helpful rather than the touch stuff on the phone which I find can be really hit & miss re accuracy (wireless keyboard, etc., should also suffice).

This would be good tech to have basic familiarity with, to include the cables in storage, in a major emergency scenario with the desktop.


the bear - 6-2-2018 at 03:25

Thanks for all your suggestions, I'm afraid building my own is out, I dont have the skill or the know how.

I dont want a lap top, I much prefer a screen and a tower.

I just want to know how powerful the unit would have to be, and something with infinite storage, (this one keeps coming up with limited memory available)

Best regards, the Bear


LSemmens - 6-2-2018 at 10:50

Basically, bear, any computer should handle your tasks. I'd recommend anything with an Intel I5, or above Processor (new or second hand) - Anything approaching that should be fine, too. (My most powerful machine at the moment is waaay below that spec) I would suggest 8Gb (or more) of RAM, and at least 1Tb of storage, however, I'd also seriously consider a small SS drive as your OS Drive, and a conventional drive for Data storage.
Video performance should not be a huge issue for you, however, if you want to use dual monitors, then a separate video card will also be needed.

Does that give you some ideas?


Quaver - 6-2-2018 at 14:45

Asus and Acer makes good PCs for a reasonable price I think.

Dad's Acer lappy has been working fine since Vista days, my Acer laptop unfortunately has cracked screen, but that's probably because I've dropped it few times:( Was working fine until then though.

I use an Asus laptop with Core i3 (one notch down from i5 Leigh mentioned) with Windows 10, 4GB ram, 1TB HDD.

It's working fine for everything. Video editing does struggle a bit. I broke the power connector after tripping on the cord few times, but I've successfully soldered a new one onto the circuit board, all by myself (first time soldering) & YouTube kewl_glasses


John_Little - 6-2-2018 at 19:12

I changed the screen on my acer laptop after I closed it with a memory stick on the keyboard. Took 15 minutes at most! £40 for the,screen.


sceptre - 6-2-2018 at 21:32

Doesn't need any particular PC as you'll be storing online
There's quite a few options such as Amazon etc. ,
https://aws.amazon.com/s3/
even your own ISP will have limited online storage for your account , need more space then you'll have to pay for it.

For photoshop which can be quite expensive , have a look at Gimp plus online tutorials

https://www.gimp.org/tutorials/


John_Little - 6-2-2018 at 22:01

I use Gimp. Quite good.


JackInCT - 6-2-2018 at 22:04

Quote:
Originally posted by sceptre
https://www.gimp.org/tutorials/


FYI: re Gimp

My VERY OLDE Photoshop (something like Ver 4 [32 bit]-NOT a typo) won't work on my Win 10 64 bit OS machine, no matter what compatibility settings that I tried--it probably would work IF I wasn't so lazy and installed some kind of Virtual OS for a Win OS that it does work with [and for which Ihave install CDs]).

So I installed Gimp, & of course the price was right $0.00; but the interface is different--NOT hugely different, but different. I AM A CREATURE OF HABIT, and I can use Photoshop in my "sleep". In the long run, I am better off trying to install my ver in some virtual way; whether that is REALISTICALLY possible, and how much time/energy it would take to make it work, knowing that I may never succeed, is a good question. I don't like surrendering to a new reality.

Plan Z would be to create a partition on my Win 10 machine, and dual boot to an old Win OS--dubious plan as I don't know if the systems [hardware] requirements on this new machine would allow for a 32 bit Win OS install.


Quaver - 6-2-2018 at 22:38

Quote:
Originally posted by John_Little
I changed the screen on my acer laptop after I closed it with a memory stick on the keyboard. Took 15 minutes at most! £40 for the,screen.

I did think about that, but decided to go for newer and faster lappy :D
I might fix it one of these days though, it wasn't bad. Windows 7 I think.


JackInCT - 6-2-2018 at 23:04

Quote:
Quote:
I did think about that, but decided to go for newer and faster lappy
I might fix it one of these days though, it wasn't bad. Windows 7 I think.


From a Plan B alternative perspective, can't you just connect a laptop with a non-functioning screen to a desktop monitor providing both have compatible plugs for that? Plus as Plan C there's this HDMI stuff to a TV, again with compatible plugs?


scholar - 7-2-2018 at 02:40

Like the Bear, I am quite happy to use a full-size keyboard with old-fashioned touch-typing keys. I have stayed with cables, not wireless, because I don't want to have any concern about batteries wearing down.

Those of us who have known the Bear here, for years, may recall that he has mentioned he has large hands and fingers, which are not well-suited for tiny cell phone buttons or tiny touch screens. My wedding finger is ring size 10 (or a tight 9), and I don't like small touch screens or cell phone buttons either.


Nimuae - 7-2-2018 at 08:12

Quote:
Originally posted by the bear
My current PC has become very problematic, fear its at the end of its useful life. The Printer is now defunct and ready to be consigned to the tip. I needed a completely new setup, something uptodate but have no idea what to buy, if I go to PC World or the like some young erk smelling the commision on a big sale will blind me with science and wreck my head with data I totally don't understand to pressure a sale.

Information for anyone that can help.

I would need the usual email and skype programmes, not interested in Fax.

I use my PC to write stories on would need a very large storage system and would like to import material as illustrations.
A printer that is economical with the price of ink refills. A Printer that can print both sides.
A good standard of illustration reproduction
I would like an endless file to save photos to. I've been told to use something called Cloud?
I would like to start learning how to use Photoshop or the like.
I don't down load music or films.
I used to be able to to listen to American Country Music stations while I worked, I would like this facility again.
I was most happy when I had XP to work with and would need a set up that was mega user friendly.


Anyone got any ideas as to a way forward.

Regards the Bear


I was reluctant to part with XP - hung on until my PC actually dropped dead. Now I find W10 is a lot more user friendly than I expected and am quite happy with it.

Personally - I would not send anything I cared about to 'The Cloud' or 'Onedrive' as it is called this week. Much prefer to store my photos and my scribblings on Memory Sticks and Discs - always on both so I have a double back up - then delete from PC to save/create space.

Am currently using an Epson printer - inks are reasonably priced if you shop around - Amazon are currently the cheapest. Prints both sides of the paper if you need it to, and the photo printing quality is excellent.

Photoshop is good - easy to use - but expensive. I use Roxio Professional for photo editing - works well with W10.


LSemmens - 7-2-2018 at 09:46

I'm with Nim on the Windoze 10 and 'cloud' storage. If I am off air for any reason, I much prefer to have access to all my data. FWIW intermittently my Wifi network forgets to Wi, if my stuff were all in the cloud then I'd be stuffed until the Wi starts Fi-ing again.