I can recommend Dell Precision. I have had the Precision 450 Dual
Processor with 2GB memory for three and a half years now, all internal
hardware preinstalled (factory installed), except one extra (my old)
hard drive. I have never had a better or more reliable PC (although my
home assembled PC comes close ;-) ).

I expect to be using this computer for at least a couple of years more.


On Dec 9, 2007 11:23 PM, Dov Isaacs <isaacs at adobe.com> wrote:
> Ashley,
> Dell is fine although my experience is that you are better off
> if you buy the "Dell Precision Workstations" as opposed to the
> stuff they hawk for the low-end, casual users. The "workstations"
> tend to use more "generic" parts as opposed to
> married-to-the-motherboard
> specialized-for-Dell el-cheapo components. They have tremendous
> upgradability and much better support (often stateside as opposed
> to someplace exceptionally offshore) as well as very high performance.
> Note that Dell just replaced the whole Precision Workstation line with
> new models, the T7400, T5400, and the T3400. The primary difference
> between the models is capacity for expansion, power supply capacity,
> and case size. (The T7400 has a massive case; the T5400 and 3400 easily
> fit vertically under a desk or can be ordered for desktop horizontal
> use.)
> The T5400 is probably the best compromise unless you need multiple
> terabytes of storage or really extreme processing needs using the 64-bit
> versions of Windows.
> Assuming that your processing needs are use of FrameMaker 8, Acrobat Pro
> 8
> typical e-mail and web browsing and perhaps also Illustrator and
> Photoshop,
> I would recommend that you not necessarily spend the extra $$$ for
> multiple
> processors or even the highest speed processor (a single
> two-point-something
> gigahertz dual or quad core Xeon will do fine). I would recommend that
> you
> get the full 4 gigabytes of memory as well as a video card such as the
> nVidia FX570 (at a minimum) that supports "dual link DVI" such that if
> you
> ever want to splurge on a very high resolution 30" monitor, your video
> card will directly support it (the Dell 30" LCD monitor is down to about
> $1300 now!). In terms of disk, it costs a bit more, but the SAS
> (serially
> attached SCSI) disks at 15000 rpm make a tremendous difference in
> performance - unless you are effectively running a server, a single 300
> gigabyte 15000 rpm SAS driver will do (although you can put multiple
> such drives in the chassis).
> A single DVD burner will do fine.
> I would MOST STRONGLY advise you NOT to go with Windows Vista at this
> point
> unless you are a real glutton for punishment. Until Microsoft works out
> the
> kinks with both Service Packs 1 and 2, expect major anguish. All these
> high end products are still available with Windows XP Professional SP2.
> Likewise, stay away from the 64-bit versions of the operating systems.
> They
> are still a "work in progress" (including Windows XP 64-bit edition) and
> just too many drivers and programs just don't work quite right with
> them.
> I would say use of any version of Vista and 64-bit Windows for typical
> desktop applications should be held off for at least 18 to 24 months
> unless
> you don't value your own time. These Dell Precision Workstations can be
> fitted with many more gigabytes of memory and will support 64-bit
> editions
> of Vista if you need such support at that time. (Note that presently,
> other
> than having the support for more memory, there is not anything important
> to
> be gained by use of the 64-bit OS. Most applications are still 32-bit
> only
> and under the 64-bit OS, they run in emulation mode and can still only
> access
> 2 gigabytes of memory at a time!
> Wireless mice can be nice! But I would be very cautious of a wireless
> keyboard. I would keep a cheap wired keyboard around for emergencies,
> especially if you have boot problems.
>         - Dov
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: framers Meredith, Ashley
> > Sent: Sunday, December 09, 2007 12:34 AM
> >
> > I've just had a hardware failure that means I get to upgrade to Vista
> Pro and the latest versions of
> > FrameMaker and Acrobat Pro, as quick as I can get a new workstation
> ordered. The only stipulation that
> > my university makes is that it prefers Dell. I haven't been paying
> much attention to hardware
> > improvements lately, so I need to ask, does anyone have recent
> experience with their offerings? I can
> > pretty much have what I ask for, so which model of Dell desktop should
> I specify? Which options? Are
> > the wireless keyboard and mouse a hindrance? Also, would a SCSI drive
> be much of an improvement over
> > their default drive?
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