Sometimes it pays to be sitting in front of your computer when an email comes in. I received an email from Dell yesterday (they send one almost every day) but this time it was actually something special: a $160 discount on the first 200 machines sold using a coupon code. It might seem odd that I’d order a Dell computer after just having my Dell monitor go defective, but I need a new baseline computer for testing hardware and software – my previous system for this purpose is now the Windows Home Server test machine. I wanted a computer that I could test video cards, RAM, and add-in cards with. I upgraded the CPU to something decent – the AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual-Core 3800+ will do nicely, and everything else can be upgraded fairly easily (though the power supply will undoubtedly be limited and stop me from testing any truly crazy video cards). Here are the specs for the machine:
All that for $379 – not bad at all! I’d be hard-pressed to buy a decent motherboard and a case for $379, let alone a CPU, RAM, hard drive and DVD burner.