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Processor suggestions for budget office systems to resell

By sethbest ยท 11 replies
May 21, 2013
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  1. I have operated a small one man IT company for the last several years. Most of my clients are small businesses (Lawyers, Chiropracters, non-profits). Right now I have several client offices that are upgrading up from Pentium 4 systems, and a few others that want to add basic desktop systems to their offices to act as counterparts to their mobile computers that they use primarily. These offices generally are interested in low cost systems that can adequately and relatively speedily handle their basic operations (web browsing, word processing, email, database and CRM access, etc...).

    Anyways I have generally not kept a large number of systems in stock before, usually reselling systems that clients trade-in to other clients, or just helping an office choose a good system off of newegg or geeks. Since I have had so many requests for systems lately though I have decided to start actively buying systems.

    I have over a decade of experience refurbishing systems so I decided to shop around for used systems to fix up but I have been having a hard time deciding on a processor line/generation/brand to focus on.

    I'm considering the Intel Core 2 Duo, or a Turion, or Athlon dual core.
    Pentium D dual cores are very cheap but I know they are much slower than the core 2 duos. From their benchmark scores though it seems like a 3.6 GHZ pentium d might be better than a 1.6 Ghz core 2 duo.

    Any tips or suggestions would be appreciated in this regard. My goal is to keep these systems under $250 to sell, and I don't need anything cutting edge.
  2. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,481   +975

    I think a Pentium G2020 will bring you the best performance for $65. The AMD A4-5300 is another great choice for $55. I think the Pentium is probably the better choice because of the larger cache, but for web browsing, word processing, and basic activities, the AMD will be fine.
  3. sethbest

    sethbest TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 77

    Thanks JC. That's a great processor if I go a build route. You've inspired me to look into making a budget system with that processor to see if that's a good long term solution for these offices.

    But for now I'm interested in refurbishing old systems (I've always enjoyed the feeling of reviving old systems for new use) and tracking down used cheap brand name systems on ebay or craigslist that I can throw a new hard drive in and clean up. Pretty much anything would be an upgrade from these old P4 2ghz machines.
  4. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 2,887   +626

    For reference, the standard PC we use at my workplace is Intel i5 3570 and 8GB RAM with 500GB HDD.

    Buying in bulk and building yourself, you should be able to get nice resell out of these.
  5. PC nerd

    PC nerd TS Booster Posts: 317   +41

    I built a PC for my Mum with an A4-5300 and it runs really well. Does all the web browsing and office stuff she needs.
  6. sethbest

    sethbest TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 77

    Ok since I wasn't getting great feedback on used stuff I went the new route. Spent a day researching parts and found a good combo deal on newegg and random parts from other sources. Followed PC nerd's, and JC's suggestion since prices on last gen APU's are really low right now and remove the necessity for buying a graphics card.

    I built two systems in generic cases, A4-5300 APU'S, 4gb corsair RAM each, MSI mobo, and threw in some of my bulk hard drives from my repair business. Great systems, nothing defective. Total cost came to low 200s each. While systems with these specs aren't really for sale at big online retailers like newegg and tiger, they still are on a bunch of store websites (frys, sears, overstock) and the lowest equivalent I found was for $480.

    So I asked around and found 4 buyers immediately, sold the first two systems for ~380 with free install, and am looking to order some others. I think I might go for the A4-3400HX this time though and go a little cheaper even.

    Thanks for the help guys, let me know if you have any other tips. I think there's got to be a better source than newegg but I haven't found it yet.
    PC nerd and Jad Chaar like this.
  7. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,481   +975

    Great choice and I am glad to hear your success story :). Microcenter has some really nice prices and motherboard+CPU combos, but those are in store only.
  8. PC nerd

    PC nerd TS Booster Posts: 317   +41

    Nice one. Have fun :D
  9. dikbozo

    dikbozo TS Booster Posts: 82

    IME the P4 is a poor choice for other reasons than you list. I find them to run hot and thirsty, I.e. they require more power and good cooling which tends to vent into offices. The C2D eliminates most of this. 6 to 7 years for these is not uncommon in everyday use. Good running systems are usually available locally either in internet listing for sale or refurb shops everywhere. Buying in bulk might be another thing.

    You might also consider refurb Athlon II systems, whether 2, 3 or 4 core as these offer good performance with adequate RAM at reasonable prices. The motherboard video on these systems is slightly better than on comparable vintage intel.
  10. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 2,887   +626

    Jad Chaar likes this.
  11. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,481   +975

  12. xtas420

    xtas420 TS Rookie

    Try to find motherboard for Intel Core i5-750 4Core@ 2,6Ghz - goes to slot 1156. You should be able to get those components kinda easily and cheaply.

    Atleast I would be more into i5-setting than anything above. That processor goes to 3Ghz with AIR easily so you can overclock the system to that point to get a few more bucks.

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