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Good/Bad Places to Buy From

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Old 08-27-2003, 10:04 PM
Doug Nelson's Avatar
Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
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That reminds me of my favorite Gateway story. Several years ago (and 3 computers ago) I thought I'd be all cutting-edge and update my own bios. This was before these things could be done from Windows, you had to make a special boot disk (not even a dos disk) to flash the bios.

Anyway, I fried my bios. I called Gateway, told them what I'd done, that it was totally my fault, and that my computer was out of warranty by almost a year. The woman on the phone said "don't worry" and they sent me an entirely new motherboard. I replaced it simply by unplugging stuff from the old mobo and plugging it into the identical place on the new one, and didn't have to do anything else. It booted perfectly, and it even had the bios upgrade I'd wanted in the first place.

Again, all free, even the phonecall.

My second favorite story was when I called them at 3am with a weird problem (different computer), and they diagnosed it as a faulty CD drive (even though this was totally unintuitive, and my problem had nothing to do with the CD drive). By 3:30am (and it's the AM part I'm stressing here) I had my order confirmation for the new part, and it did fix my problem (and, as I mentioned earlier, was much faster than my old one).
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Old 08-28-2003, 03:49 AM
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chris h chris h is offline
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I dont buy complete PC's just build them using various suppliers and they then evolve over time subject to compatibility etc. Anyway heres some UK component suppliers who know their lines.

I'll throw in

as well but they are really a box operation.

Gateway packed their bags over here a couple of years ago which left my one of my Network IT friends fuming, he tells me Dell got his business but it was back to square one as regards developing contacts etc. I think margins are very tight over here some of the best firms as regards service have gone under purely because the market is price orientated.
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Old 08-28-2003, 07:43 AM
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Bob Walden Bob Walden is offline
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Have to go along with most of the people. My Gateway is 5 years old and still doing ok. Only had to replace a fan and general upgrades over all that time. Service has always been helpful. One of the main reasons for going Gateway was their service centers are easy to get to. We have one just a few miles from our house.

I am now looking into a new computer and would go Gateway again, but I am getting into video and I don't feel any of the off the shelf systems would fill my needs. Like Greg I have been looking at Alienware or having a system built.

Just a little off subject but I'm looking for people to join my club to boycott any company that relies on mail-in rebates. I have had three bad experiences out of three mail-in rebates since spring. All say 6-8 weeks wait. One I started calling after 10 weeks. Was told it had been malled. Called back at 12 weeks and was told they would cancel first mailing but they had to wait 60 days befere they could mail another. This was a $100 rebate. Another took 11 weeks and I still have not received the last one after 13 weeks. Last 2 were only $10-20 dollars but still makes me mad. Local news had a story on mail-in rebates this week and said 95% of rebates are not returned. To me this is a scam. Help stamp out mail-in rebates!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 08-28-2003, 08:09 AM
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catia catia is offline
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I have had really good experiences purchasing Canon cameras and lenses at Onecall. Very courteous and fast. Two day FedEx included and they seem to have the lowest prices.

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Old 08-30-2003, 01:47 PM
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paulette conlan paulette conlan is offline
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Great thread! Let us know how you like the Graphire 2. I'd like to get a tablet but am getting some sticker shock regarding the cost of the wacom. By the way, I've gotten a few things from and was satisfied.

Re computers... after much agonizing I got myself a Dell system. My 4 year old HP system( which I enhanced over the years) is still going strong but I wanted something with bells and whistles. Initially when I got the HP I had to call support a few times and I am probably the only person on the planet who had no trouble with their support. Also emailed them at times and I had a real person email me back with the information I needed I didn't get another HP because I have no idea where the company is going at this point but I must admit I had no problems with it.

Re Dell and their support.... a major disappointment. And that was one of the main reasons I bought one.Their telephone technical support was very poor when I needed help re something with the installation. I got so disgusted I told the support person that I would call back in the morning- I was too tired to deal with it anymore.
An email response concerning the problem took 2 days to get back to me and it just gave me a link to something which didn't help me. Finally I was able to solve my problem by going onto one of the forums( apparently alot of other people had the same problem).

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Old 08-30-2003, 03:55 PM
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PamT PamT is offline
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I often use Good prices and reliable delivery. It was originally recommended to me by my own "computer guru" friend - a network specialist.

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Old 08-30-2003, 04:50 PM
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KevinBE KevinBE is offline
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I haven't bought a name brand computer since 1983. I always buy parts and make my own. I usually buy from, they usually have the lowest prices and have a great customer service rating from three or four online rating sites. We use Compaq/HP at work but have started buying Dells this year. HP is still strugling and Dell can be tough to talk to. I had to become Dell Certified to be able to call in and get warranty service on our PCs. Oh well it wasn't my decission to switch to Dell.

I buy a lot of stuff from BH Photo Video with great results. Their prices are kind of high on some things. I buy a lot of my Epson expendables from Another good supply site is Their prices are s little higher that but if you buy over a certain amount the shipping is free and that makes a big difference sometimes.
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Old 08-30-2003, 06:54 PM
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TwinbNJ TwinbNJ is offline
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I am very picky about my purchases - I use and --- I make a point to pay attention to the rattings of the vendor -- I like a good price but not at the "price" of service!

So remember if you are asked to take a survey on ---web site, delivery, and product --- answer. I always do and look at consumer reviews.
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Old 08-30-2003, 07:24 PM
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DannyRaphael DannyRaphael is offline
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I've had very good luck buying software (plugins as well as retail versions of products, e.g., Corel Photo-paint, Photo Impact, Paint Shop Pro, et al) and books for considerable discounts over retail through eBay auctions. eBay isn't for everyone, but it works for me. (now owned by eBay) is also great source for books at a discount as is purchasing used books through If you don't have to have a book soon after it's published, you can save a ton of $.

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