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QUICKLY! Advice about Media Center and Gateway PCs

By Vigilante
Jan 15, 2007
  1. Hi, if anybody can help real quick, that would be great, because in a couple hours, this will be over!

    We are getting ready to buy a new PC for our office. The choices are for a couple Gateways sold at Best Buy. These:
    http://www.gateway.com/home/products/ret/ret_GT5238E.shtml

    or

    http://www.gateway.com/home/products/ret/ret_gt5228.shtml


    Specs are about the same. The first one is an Intel Core 2 Duo e6300, the second uses an AMD X2 4200+.
    I've been researching, and it seems the Intel is the better way to go, speed wise.
    But, the AMD comes with 2gb of RAM and the Intel 1gb.

    Which would you choose? They are the same price.


    Secondly, both come with Media Center, but this is for an office, doing mostly office work, though we do play games on occasion. I like that they have a PCI-E slot. Anyway, I'm not sure Media Center is the best for an office OS. Can Media Center be made to work more like XP Pro? Like, can I disable or remove all the fancy video and audio and multimedia junk and have a basic office OS?
    Kinda like in XP you can go to classic mode. I wonder if, in MC, you can go to a more traditional setup. What say?

    We'll be going out to buy this PC shortly, so just sock it to me, what do you think?



    P.S. The only other options in this town are HPs and Compaqs and E-machines. I won't have any of those. Other options are no-names. But none of them equipped like these Gateways for the same price. So it is these, or mail order. But we tend to buy locally rather then mail order.
     
  2. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 575

    I would go for the one with the C2D processor, which is of course faster than the 4200+. It has a better HDD setup and better integrated graphics (I feel like I'm sinning by saying this). 1 gig of RAM should be plenty, though I'm not sure exactly what you will be using the machine for. You can always add if you need to.

    As to your question about Media Center, I really can't answer that. I did see that both come with an upgrade to Vista, though it doesn't mention which edition. From the price that Media Center sells at I would think that it is a tricked out version of Home Edition, not Pro. You could order an OEM version from newegg and the computer would still be a great deal.
     
  3. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,714   +397

    It will act just like XP Home. It won't be able to join domains like Pro.
     
  4. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 1,666

    As long as I won't have trouble running any normal software or games on MC, it should be fine.
    I don't have to have Pro, this isn't a domain, I just prefere it for other security features.
    It's just that when I see MC demo'd in stores, it has like this dumb interface where you click on a wheel for what you want to "do" like "edit photos", "watch DVD", "Play slideshow" etc...
    I want to know if I can turn off all that multimedia stuff to basically be left with an OS that acts and looks like Home. And won't have compatability problems with software.


    I am leaning toward the Intel setup myself, it also has DVI connection and more USBs. Plus everywhere I search, the C2D is rated faster than the 4200+.

    Unless anybody can think of any other reasons, I'll probably get the Intel. I hope I don't miss that extra gig of RAM! We're talking CAD drafting mostly, but also file and printer sharing, office apps, programming, some audio recording, a few games, and possibly web server. But most certainly lots of multi-tasking.
     
  5. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 575

    If you need extra, a gig of memory wouldn't be too expensive to get and I'm pretty sure you know how to install it :D . MC pretty much behaves like XP Home for me, but like you said the extra security qith XP Pro would be nice to have. Regular apps run fine on MC and no silly wheel if you aren't using the media portion. You can set the desktop and such to Windows classic if you like the old look like I do.
     
  6. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 1,666

    Good deal, thanks.
    Though I'd have to get the company to buy the RAM, which is harder.
     
  7. halo71

    halo71 TS Rookie Posts: 1,090

    But in an office environment.....do you really need more than 1GB of memory?
     
  8. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,714   +397

    According to raybay in this post in this thread you need 500-700 gig hard drives with on the fly language translating and ultra fast processors to tie into the 'digital stream' and internationalization for your office computer.
     
  9. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 1,666

    The internationalization is handled already by a third party hydro-conduction trans-fluxation bit stream manipulator with bimolecular poly-induction array cleansers.


    Incidentally, the boss ended up not getting the Best Buy Gateways, but instead bought a system off his son who owed him some change.

    This system has the Athlon 4200+, but a much better video card, larger hard drive, better motherboard, case, PS, etc...

    So we got a better system for much less. I have spent the day reloading it and installing the 95 programs I always use.

    Thanks again
     
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