The best time to buy a computer?

Discussion in 'Computer Science & Culture' started by Facial, Nov 13, 2005.

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  1. Facial Valued Senior Member

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    I've pondered this thought for aeons.

    Having witnessed the computer boom of the last decade or so (mainly through ads), I have generally observed that it's probably worth strategically placing the time at which you buy a computer, despite the supply/demand price automation in the market.

    I think the primary indicator in computer technology would be the speed/complexity of the CPU. Right after a new technology leap in speed/bus speed/bit address size comes out, the prices of the predecessor drops really fast. So it's probably not worth getting a new computer anytime before AMD or Intel release something radically new. However, even within these generations themselves are steady increments of speed. So when, within a given CPU generation, is it best to get a new PC? Point being, you want to have your comp on the throne for the longest time possible before it inevitably becomes superceded by something else on the ads, and without regret.
     
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  3. July, August - middle of the year, PC sales slump, that's when the previous Christmases top spec leader retails at around 50% its original retail price. Basically, pick the system you've got your eye on now and seriously think about picking it up in the middle of summer.
     
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  5. Cottontop3000 Death Beckoned Registered Senior Member

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    How about the day-after-Thanksgiving sales?
     
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  7. Avatar smoking revolver Valued Senior Member

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    Hardly international.
     
  8. Cottontop3000 Death Beckoned Registered Senior Member

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    True.
     
  9. Thor "Pfft, Rebel scum!" Valued Senior Member

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    I've found that PC sales are often quite good in July and August. Probably the 2nd highest sales rate in the year. This is due to the fact that people will be starting college and university in September so alot of students snap up PCs and laptops to help with their studies.
     
  10. spuriousmonkey Banned Banned

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    Are saying that they will be expensive in july august?
     
  11. Thor "Pfft, Rebel scum!" Valued Senior Member

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    Not at all, in fact alot of retailers I've been to (and the one I worked for) offered various 'student' deals which were extremely good value for money and alot of places tend to throw in some extra gubbins if you present an NUS card (student card). But I can only speak for some parts of the UK.
     
  12. Neildo Gone Registered Senior Member

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    Buy a computer whenever you want. There is no best time to buy a computer because new technology comes out all the time. Only when new technology comes out do prices drop on previous generation technology and that's why it seems as though the prices are best to buy, but all you're doing is buying not current technology which everything winds up being bested by something new every couple months. It's an endless circle basically. Just buy items whenever you want.

    Christmas time seems to be the best as that's another period when new technology comes out which then drops prices of the previous generation. Prices also further drop due to the holidays so it's a double bonus from that. Also November is gaming month when all the best and most waited for games come out. November-January is when I'd upgrade everything, depending on how current you want your technology to be and how much you want to pay for it.

    - N
     
  13. JoshHolloway Registered Senior Member

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    I am buying my next computer summer 2007.
     
  14. Stryder Keeper of "good" ideas. Valued Senior Member

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    Kind of tieing in to what has already been said, it's not so much the time of year as it is the computers technology level.

    For instance when you buy a computer you should perhaps give it's price something similar to a "Rolling Stock" concept. Namely you define how long you intend your computer to last and class it as a "consumerable". In this way you can both learn the prices of a computer by it's age for purchasing and of course resale.

    The basis of this is taken from a corporate understanding of how Rolling Stock like company cars are paid for by the company, quite simply when the car is purchased for it's full amount it's life expectancy within company service is then worked out.

    Car price / Life Expectancy(in years) = Amount devalued per year

    This then allows the price of the car over the years for insurance or resale to be "roughly" worked out, of course it doesn't take into account any damaged, replaced components or warrantee's which obviously would have to be worked into the price as a "vector".

    The same can be applied to computers, just replace Car with Computer. This allows you to get a rough "on-paper" valuation of your computer as it ages, or a computer that you might look into purchasing.

    The Mathematics can be altered however if you buy a computer when it's no longer state of the art from a computer dealer. (Namely Last years stock) since there is usually a price reduction to shift the surplus machines from the shelves.

    The mathematics is altered because the computer still has it's shelf-life (it's never been used boxed in a corporate warehouse) however it's "technological" life expectancy has matured one year.

    When the computer reaches it's life expetancy it doesn't mean you have to rush out and buy a new one since you might still be able to get some use out of it, or sell it with which money you get is a bonus since it's supposedly "consumed".

    [If you wanted to play it properly you'd work it out like this:

    New Comp Release price: £1000 / 5 Year life expectancy = £200 worth per year
    Purchase comp 1 year after release for no more than £800.
    Use for 3 years (most warrantees last between 1 and 3 years)
    When it approaches the forth year of ownership, Sell computer for £200 (possibly £200-£300)

    Total Comp cost: £600 for 3 years use with £200 going towards your replacement computer.

    Cycle and Rinse.]
     
  15. Russ723 Relatively Hairless Ape Registered Senior Member

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    I've been contemplating replacing this shitbox with an Area 51M.

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    My comp sci professor said laptops don't usually run at the speed they say they do.

    Talking about something to do with the batteries, I was too busy looking at the girl in front of me to pay much attention.
     
  16. jayleew Who Cares Valued Senior Member

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    At this point, the bus speed is the issue of a computer's upgradability. If you want the most longevity out of your investment, you need to buy one right after a jump in the bus speed, like several months ago. 800 FBS is the latest speed, and the one that will make your computer last for as long as possible. The motherboard is always the issue of when the best time to buy a computer. The answer is to buy the best and fastest motherboard available, if you are wanting a computer that will not be obsolete in two or three years.
     
  17. jayleew Who Cares Valued Senior Member

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    If cost is your issue, and not longevity, take a deal from Dell, WalMart, or BestBuy. For blazing speed now, you probably can get one for about $300. But, that will be obsolete in at most five years. That is a huge issue. People today are buying great machines that put out the best today, but do not have the upgradability to accomdate future CPU speeds, PCI speeds, RAM speeds. Every day is the best day to buy a computer, as long as you know what you are looking for. But, longevity is maximized after a bus speed jump, unless the electronics engineers come up with a different architecture that will create higher speeds or smaller components.
     
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