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Why Is One Computer Brand Better Than Another?

Computer Brand or "name" brand products become so by popularity, bad products do not succeed in the marketplace...

Back in the day when I worked for a major bank they would buy thousands of computers at one time.

The idea behind buying quantity (besides standardization) by contract is the lower price for higher quality and of course the customer service thus they purchased a popular product.

But as an individual you don't buy a thousand or even a hundred computers at one time, one maybe two.

So how do you figure out what computer product will give you the highest quality and best customer service for your buck?

You use the old customer standby: Other customer's experience.

Smart people base their purchase on others customer's experience such as word of mouth from friends and family and more recently 'customer reviews' on web sites (use care with "customer testimonials" some of them can be bogus...).

When you think of a computer brand which one gives you confidence in the quality of the hardware and the customer service?

I do some reviews on this web site and try to be objective in my reviews. Also my reviews are about hardware/software that most other web sites don't have.

Way back when I first started working with computers there were five major companies that manufactured computers.

Most of the top computer manufactures developed and manufactured most of their own parts and components, some used all third party parts and components.

Although couple of big computer manufacture companies started off this way, namely ACER and Gateway, where as Gateway now does R&D and manufacturing a lot of their parts ACER didn't change until just recently.

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Most manufactures can't produce some parts 'in house' because of the complexity of the part such as memory, processors, or hard drives. These parts require a lot of specialty manufacturing techniques, tools, and machinery that would make the computer too expensive for most companies to produce, let alone individuals to purchase.

The only computer manufacture company I know of that produced all parts in house with the exception of the processor was Kraypro,  they went out of business in the early 1990's mainly because they failed to adapt to the changing environment in hard drives and video. Heck of a computer, they advertised you could drop their computer from 10 or so feet and it would still run.

Now this may or may not surprise you but most "Custom hand built computers" use mainly third party parts, some may have the motherboard and video cards produced by another manufacture specifically for their product but most don't manufacture any parts.

The difference however is in the quality of the parts, it just isn't the labor that costs more it is the high quality parts and of course the first class customer support. One that I found to be very easy to work with was Alien Computers. I worked with them on a laptop, it was very refreshing to talk to someone who was very knowledgeable about the laptop.

Gateway after a couple of years moved to manufacture more of the parts in their computers mainly the motherboard, video, sound, and drive controllers. As time moved on  more of the devices were embedded on the motherboard the R&D of chips sets for these devices slowly went to other manufactures with the tools and machinery to produce the chip sets cheaper with higher quality than the 'in house' version.

At one time Gateway had one of the worst customer service reputations of all the major computer manufactures but has since improved greatly. The last time I had to contact their customer service they were almost as good as IBM which had the best customer service of the top five computer manufactures.

But one company still uses a lot of 'off the shelf third party' parts and components, not only are they cheaper the parts are of lower quality. The same goes for their customer service, having dealt with this company for a long time for one reason or another I find their customer service to the worst in the world.

That company? ACER! (A computer brand I stay away from... )

I have some mottos of sorts: "By cheap, get cheap" and "I fix a problem once, ok. I fix a problem twice, I am considering replacement. There will not be a third time, the third time something breaks, it is trash time!"

In the past I favored Compaq, IBM, and now ASUS because of the quality of workmanship in their products but like everything else seems they are using China for their manufacturing. And so it goes, what is your favorite computer brand? Why? Quality of product? Customer Service?

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Author of this web site: Monte Russell

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