There are some things you allow others to buy you, then there are those things you just have to do for yourself. This is one of those things I had to do for myself; I finally bought a new computer.

For the back story, my previous computer has been nothing but problems from the day I bought it. That sucker just kept shutting down at the most inopportune times (as if there’s an opportune time for your computer to throw up the BSOD), and there was nothing I could do about it. I took it back to Comp USA, where I bought it, seven times. I’d had it put together there, and I’m not sure but that was probably the biggest mistake of my life. I easily spent over $3,500 on that bad boy, first picking out all the components, then in repair costs and replacement parts costs (even though I purchased a service agreement), and nothing.

Then this summer, I took it to the computer repair guy up the street, and had a couple of encounters with him that ended up with my computer still not working, but now it was shutting down more often, and at more inopportune times. Frankly, with everything I did over a four year period, if I was dealing with real world issues I’d have won the Nobel Peace Prize.

Gateway FX Computer

Well, there’s nothing that a good consulting assignment won’t take care of, and in this case, it’s taken care of my being able to buy a new computer; whew! So, what did I get? I got the Gateway FX Desktop with Intel® Core™ i7-920 Processor, 3 GB DDR3 RAM, 750 GB SATA hard drive, 2.66 GHz processor, 512K ATI RADEON HD 4850 video card, 10 USB ports, one Firewire, dual-layered DVD player/ recorder,… and a host of other stuff that I’m not quite sure what it does, but I’ll learn it. This thing is fast, and it’s stable; man, I’ve wanted that for a very long time. It’s also expandable for two more hard drives and up to 16 GB DDR3 RAM; like I need more storage and more speed and power. Well, in this case, one never knows with me, right? Still, I’m stuck with Vista, but I have to say that, thus far, it’s working well, though there are some minor irritations I’m having, such as it’s working hard to keep me out of files that I’ve always been able to get into and modify on my own. That, and this weird thing of having two Program Files folders, one for 32-bit stuff, the other for 64-bit stuff; weird.

Now, me being me, I had to talk myself out of getting the computer that was one step up, and I’m glad I did. It came with a 2.93 GHz i7-940 processor and 6 GB DDR RAM and 2 GB video memory along with the terabyte hard drive, but when it comes to RAM, it was only expandable to 12 GB RAM. Of course, it was also set up for wireless LAN, and that would have been nice, but since my hub is less than a foot away from the back of my computer, it’s no big deal.

I had to talk myself out of that for two reasons. One is because I also bought the 22″ HDMI Gateway widescreen monitor that’s taken my breath away thus far (once again, having to talk myself out of spending another $150 for 2 inches; that just didn’t seem to computer). Two is because, since I was throwing my money around, I also bought a 42″ Sharp HDTV for the bedroom to replace the best sounding TV I ever had because the remote control wouldn’t work anymore, and it wasn’t the control, it was the sensor in the TV. Have you tried to find an inexpensive TV repairman in today’s world?

Yeah, I was throwing my money around yesterday, treating myself to a late Christmas present. But don’t think I spent it all on me. I took care of my wife before Christmas, the TV is actually more for her than for me, since I spend almost all of my time at the computer, and I’m still going to be giving her more stuff over the next few days to help her take care of some things she’s wanted to do for a long while. I’m a good husband, but she’s a good wife, and knew I needed a new computer. I gave her my old monitor, and man, there’s no real comparison between a flat screen 19″ and one with a big tube in it, is there?

Asus laptop

Of course, the next big electronics purchase for me will need to be a laptop at some point. My poor laptop is moving close to 5 years old now, and I noticed it was struggling last week as I was running it as the main computer. I hope it can last at least another couple of months, as I have some other things to take care of, and then we’ll see what I go with. Right now, I’m leaning towards the Asus Laptop with Intel® Centrino® 2 Processor Technology, red and black colored (I love colors), Intel® Centrino Core™2 Duo Mobile 2.66 GHz, 320 GB hard drive with 4GB DDR3 RAM, and a 17 inch screen. Right now I have a 15.4″ screen, but if you know me you know I never go lateral or smaller, hence the larger screen. Of course, something else might tickle my fancy, as I haven’t ruled out the Alienware n9750 17″ laptop or their new M17 17″, with the 500 GB hard drive, and I’m still kicking myself for not buying, when it was available, the Superman Area 51 laptop; that was really cool!

No matter. With the new speed and no more worries about shutting down, there will be more blogging articles on all my blogs, and everyone will want to buy new computers eventually. Happy holidays!


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