Yesterday, I purchased a Gateway computer with an $800+ discount – and responses varied, from “Congratulations” to “What the hell were you thinking?!” If you made it all the way to the end of the article, I noted that I’d explain a little bit more about why I chose to get a new system now instead of waiting for Intel’s next generation processors to be released (which will be in a matter of months). I’ve always been an Intel guy – always have, and always probably will be. Not that AMD hasn’t looked tasty in recent months; I’ve been watching processor benchmark scores and reading them quite regularly, noting that the 4800+ and FX-60 were the CPUs to beat. Intel hasn’t done very well with their Pentium 4 line – but all of that is about to change with the impending release of the “Conroe” line. True dual core processing is right around the corner for Intel users like myself, but I couldn’t wait (and I didn’t want to wait) any longer.
I’m an enthusiast, so I know that the only thing I’d want to purchase would be an Extreme Edition Conroe processor – but nobody knows when those will be released. Ponzi, on the other hand, just wants her email, Web, and pictures to “work” faster than they do today. I spec’ed out a killer machine (as you read) that would work well for either one of us – but since I’m the one who does most of the heavy lifting and processing around here, I’m going to use the system at first. Then, when the computer I really want comes to market, Ponzi will inherit the new Gateway machine. And while I’m on that system, she’ll be using my current one (which is a little faster than hers). Her computer will immediately be shipped to her mother, who is in desparate need of a new PC. In the end, we’ll both end up with speed demons – and quite happy.
Intel just released the Pentium 965 Extreme Edition. In reading the reviews, people were suggesting that we all should wait. Not that the new unit was a slouch by any stretch; for the most part, it held its own with desktop applications – not necessarily as fast as AMD’s top processors in some cases, but fast enough for Ponzi to be thrilled (or giving her more than enough speed for her regular workload). Many of the hardware review sites are geared towards enthusiasts and gamers. I love seeing frame rates for the latest 3D games, but that just never applies to me when it comes to choosing components for my system. And Ponzi doesn’t even play solitaire on her computer, so what good would a higher FPS do her? I want a good machine, a solid machine, no matter what – and the Pentium 965 Extreme Edition (with its system components) will work quite well for our needs. At least we’ve entered the terabyte age!