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Anybody interested building their own computer for the holidays?
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Posted 11/21/2012 21:24 (#2709917 - in reply to #2706242)
Subject: Re: Anybody interested building their own computer for the holidays?

Well the holidays are starting tonight and people must be too busy stuffing the turkey or already have all the computers they need! ^-^
For fun, I tried to compare the entry level $399 Dell Vostro 270 with a home-built entry level equivalent.
I came up with an extra cost of $38, make it $50 for better components.
But unlike the more expensive models, you cannot customize any internal component in the Dell Vostro.
If you want a little more memory, a bigger hard drive and a multicard reader, you need to shop for the $499 model, and in that case, the home-built PC is $8 cheaper. This is amazing, since as an individual, you do not get the low shipping price or the bulk prices and other incentives that Dell gets. I doubt they pay Microsoft $100 for a Windows OEM license, for instance.
I haven't repeated the exercise for even higher spec models at today's prices, but this confirms what I observed in previous years: You can't beat in price the cheapest manufacturer models (which nobody in their right mind would purchase anyway) but the higher the specs, the cheaper the home-built computer gets.

Check the "Cheapest" tab in this spreadsheet for the Dell Vostro comparison:

Well, if building your own computer as a fun family workshop takes your fancy, feel free to revive this thread or post a new one in the Computer forum, the holidays are not over yet. There are many people on NAT even more competent than me to help you out.

Edited by Chimel 11/21/2012 21:26
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