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OEM Pros/Cons

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by FordGT90Concept, Oct 13, 2008.

  1. FordGT90Concept

    FordGT90Concept "I go fast!1!11!1!"

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    I wanted to know what people thought of the OEMs they had to deal with mostly in regards to the following subjects:
    • Customer Service
    • Warranty Repair
    • Non-Warranty Repair
    • Driver Support
    • Customizing the Computer for Specific Needs
    • Bloatedness of new Computers
    • Inflated Price
    • Sign-Me-Ups
    • Technical Support
    • Freebies (Software on Disks--Stuff that is preinstalled goes under Bloatness)

    Fanboyism is not permitted here. Try to be focused on points that are good and bad.

    I'll start with a few...
    Dell
    Pros
    • Drivers were available when needed.
    • System Restore disks (when provided) appear to be relatively clean.
    Cons
    • Driver disks include multiple hardware configurations so you don't know exactly which drivers are needed.
    • The driver disk uses a web format which means all the shortfalls of a website (have to "save as..." everything).
    • Some of their case designs are ridiculous (folding this way and that way).

    HP
    Cons
    • Seven disks to reinstall Windows XP--bloated to the heavens.

    Toshiba
    Pros
    • Customer Service speaks English.
    • Customer Service tried their best to remedy my issues.
    Cons
    • No drivers available for my specific model (web or otherwise).
    • Customized model shipped over a week after purchase directly from China. I got the bag long before I got the laptop.
    • No disks, what-so-ever, included with laptop purchase.
    • Technical Support would not lift a finger to get me a disk that "I could install Windows Vista Ultimate from after erasing the entire hard drive with DoD 5220.22 M compliant method."
    • Over 80 running processes on first boot (and this was a business-class computer)--bloated with no erase means to get rid of it.


    Lenovo
    Pros
    • Solid construction.
    • Lots of features.
    Cons
    • Six or seven disks to reinstall windows from scratch--bloated.
    • Some included software (backup or something) caused the OS to be irreversibly damaged. One tech spent three hours to clean up some of the mess. I spent another four hours erasing, installing, and deleting everything that may have originally caused the problem (Lenovo software).
    • Warranty extensions are extremely expensive.
    • Generally more expensive than most.


    Systemax
    Pros
    • All systems include at least one disk: System Restore (basically a Windows disk--no extras).
    • Most systems include an additional disk: Applications & Driver (is what it says).
    • Solid construction.
    • Most parts included in machines you could buy from Tiger Direct (obviously not the case with laptops).
    • Customer Service and Tech Support speak English.
    • Customer Service is very helpful.
    • Every time I contacted Tech Support, I recieved a favorable outcome.
    • Machine-specific bundled software (very limited). For instance, a computer with a TV Tuner may come with Cyberlink software to run record and watch TV.
    • Sent CDs via phone request for software that came pre-installed (lost after erase).
    Cons
    • Limited selection of products and very few places to buy them from.
    • Generally more expensive than the competition.
    • Technology-wise, tends to be slightly behind the curve.
    • Techsupport is quick to have you send it in and don't seem to be a wealth of knowledge.
    • Service turn-around times are long (over a week).


    Add to the list. This is a buyer-beware service. XD
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2008
    SimFreak47 says thanks.
    Crunching for Team TPU
  2. FordGT90Concept

    FordGT90Concept "I go fast!1!11!1!"

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    No one has anything to say about the OEMs they worked with? I find that hard to believe. :|
     
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  3. Kursah

    Kursah

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    We had a Packard Bell back in the mid-90's, that absolutely was overpriced garbage that woudln't barely work for the life of it. Spent more time on the Customer Service phone to someone who could barely speak or understand english getting no help...glad that case is gone...went with building our own after that mess. See no reason to go OEM prebuilt anymore, I'm not a laptop guy either. :D

    :toast:
     
  4. erocker

    erocker Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I bought a Dell in 1998. 10 years and still kicking, in a dirty automotive shop mind you!:) It's the only OEM system I ever bought and has outlasted everything else so far!
     
  5. oli_ramsay

    oli_ramsay

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    If you have the skills to build your own PC, then I can see no reason to buy OEM. I guess the only positive thing about them is that you don't have to build it or install anything.

    The obvious downside is price, as well as quality of components. You can't handpick selected components that you've researched into with OEM. Plus there's nothing quite like the feeling of cherry picking the parts, building and tweaking your own PC and have it all working the way you want it.

    My two pence :D
     
  6. blkhogan

    blkhogan New Member

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    If I told u.. I'd have to kill u
    When I used to buy prebuilts I always had very good luck with DELL desktops. Thier support is a little lacking sometimes, but they usualy eventualy come up to speed.
    Havent owned any HP desktops, but I do like their laptops. I have 3 HP laptops and they all are in perfect working order.
    Toshiba is unknown to me. I do have a Toshiba laptop but I recieved it borken and have been using it for parts.
    Levono: never owned one.
    systemax: never owned one.
     
  7. SimFreak47

    SimFreak47 New Member

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    Damn, I had plans on doing something very similar! Oh well, saved me the work :)
     
  8. Jizzler

    Jizzler

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    My first computer was from an OEM, Gateway, back in 1994. It was also the last time that I ever bought from an OEM for personal use. Not that there was anything wrong with it, in fact it worked great for the two years I had it, but after building my second computer I haven't gone back.

    At work I've used Dell's business line of computers (Optiplex, PowerEdge) and I'm mostly positive about these machines. Good cases, especially on the server side.
     
  9. Frick

    Frick Fishfaced Nincompoop

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    I've bought several HP machines for friends and family, and I'm quite happy with them. All of them had a seperate partition with the backup on it, and it works like a charm (until the physical disc breaks that is...). Also, great pricing (at least when I bought them). Don't know how to put it in list-form. :p

    Fujitsu Siemens:

    There's LOADS of information on the website. Drivers, info on motherboards (including manuals and layout), full system specs and so on... I've been shocked at several ocasions by the sheer amount of information (some OEM's and random manufacturers seem to forget about everything that's more than 6 months old).
     
  10. Binge

    Binge Overclocking Surrealism

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    I agree with the guy above. Most other prebuilt sellers try to get you to buy another system before giving you the info you need to fix your existing machine.
     
  11. FatForester New Member

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    I have a Dell Inspiron 1520 laptop and I've enjoyed it. I had to deal with customer support over a faulty 8600m GT GPU, and that was ok to deal with. It took 3 calls and shipping it off two times to fix it, which was a headache. It's not their fault with the GPU, but they could have tested it before delivery and been easier to work with.

    Everything else though is as expected. The included OEM Vista DVD was clean and had no bloat, so I never had to deal with their software. When I first got the laptop, it was chuck full of useless stuff, but they put all of that on CD's as well incase if I ever needed it.

    My parents have an old HP with an AMD 3500+ in it, and HP's method of reinstallation is ridiculous. I had to "make" two backup DVD's from the default installation. When I had to reinstall XP, the DVD's created a hidden partition of about 15gb and THEN installed XP from them. This included ALL of the bloat from before, and solved no problems. Not to mention this wasted two DVD's. From then on I used a CD of OEM XP from my old desktop to dodge the whole HP business.

    The HP computer itself is well built and had plenty of features for the price when we bought it. I have a minor gripe with the hard drive rails though. You have to unplug everything on the inside to get your hands around the plastic guard they have, then take off the entire front part of the case. Then you have to pull back these cheap plastic holders and then slide out the hard drive through the front. It really takes 3 hands to do the job, which is ridiculous.

    So all in all Dell is good, but I'd stay away from them next time and get an ASUS. HP is so-so, but the next time my parents need a new computer I'll come into town and build it for them. It's MUCH easier that way.
     
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  12. JC316

    JC316 Knows what makes you tick

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    HP is crap. I had a Pavillion XE743 back in 99. Bad product and bad support. I had the tech support phone number and all of my information memorized when talking to them. Tech support only lasted for a year and then you had to pay for it.
     
  13. FordGT90Concept

    FordGT90Concept "I go fast!1!11!1!"

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    Heh. So my 7 CD incident wasn't an isolated case. That's good to know.
     
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  14. FordGT90Concept

    FordGT90Concept "I go fast!1!11!1!"

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    Use advanced edit mode and click on "Unordered List."
     
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  15. FreedomEclipse

    FreedomEclipse ~Technological Technocrat~

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    I helped a friend order a DELL laptop about a month ago, but they ran into a few problems as soon as we placed the order it seems.....

    1. The laptop arrived 2weeks late - we already had to chase them up a few times about ETA
    2. When the laptop finally DID arrive the hard drive failed within a week - it started to BSOD then refused to start up at all - I thought it might of been a ram problem but it turns out it was actually the hard drive that was the problem.

    3. after endless calls to DELL telling them how much we really love their laptops they finally got around to sending an engineer around to have a look at it.

    ====

    with regards to laptops - its hard to find places that will supply you with parts for a 'barebones' laptop. ive read in a few PC mags where they done an article on building your own laptop but the main issue was securing some of the more important parts such as the Chassis & motherboard.

    its not completely impossible but availabilty of parts is another story.


    IMHO if you got the skills to build you own PC then use them. at last you know what kinda parts have gone into the machine as well as being able to choose what O/S to run on it.

    ----
     

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