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Computers have grown up. In today’s market there is no more room for the computer that still boasts having a “Pentium” processor, and even the dual core market is rapidly fading. As companies approach the end of the year many are starting to think about replacing their machines, upgrading their systems and getting ready for the New Year. It is important to know what systems you should be looking at that you are in the market for a new desk top PC that can handle all the functionality of your office. Before you start to shortlist the computers you want to get there are a couple of exercises that will help you pick the right type of computer.

First you should identify what you will be using the computer for. Most graphics based software take a lot of memory and processing power today. If any of your computers are going to be running software like Adobe Photoshop, then you should consider a higher end computer that will have no problem handling the software that you are going to install. Other programs that usually take up a lot of memory are design and web tool software suites like Fusion. A good rule of thumb is that if you are going to be using the computer for anything that could become graphic intensive, in other words full of graphics, then you should always look for a higher end computer.

What does a higher end machine look like today?

Most computers that are going to be able to handle a load like Photoshop, AutoCad, or other high usage programs will need an excellent motherboard. One option is Intel’s Intel Core i3930K or Ivy Bridge processing. One word of caution, these processors are by far the most expensive on the market. If you are looking for something a little less pricey for the office, here is a good basic configuration. Remembering, of course that not getting the latest processor in a new machine is never a good decision.

3.1 GHz Intel Core i7 3770S processor


2GB Nvidia GeForce GT 640M Graphics Card

2TB, 7,200rpm Hard Drive (HDD)

27-inch, 2,560×1,440 for display resolution.

A computer like with this level of configuration will usually cost around $2,000 on the market and is an excellent purchase, because it will last you for around 3 years with the right amount of technical support. Naturally you will want to ensure that it has the latest updates of all the office suite software and frequent checks to ensure optimum performance.

If however, you are on a budget and are not in the market to spend upward of two thousand dollars on replacing computers or buying new machine, there are always other options. Let’s face it for the simple data entry technician or the person keeping your books there really isn’t a need for a top of the line processing system, a killer graphics card, or mega amounts of RAM. For the lower end of the spectrum office needs, here is an ideal configuration.

3.3GHz Intel Core i3-2120 for processing


64MB Intel HD Graphics card

1TB 7,200rpm hard drive

This configuration will run all of your standard windows based programs including Windows 7, but will not be able to handle the memory hog programs for long. The great news is a system like this can run as low as $419 with a little bit of shopping around. On the other hand this is a computer that could require a more frequent upgrade since it is starting out already behind the curve on the technology side. Additionally when you are adding a computer like this to the line up it is always a good idea to know exactly what this machine is going to be used for and ensure that no extra programs find their way onto it. Frequent checkups and having an external team doing an audit is a good way to keep your machines running at optimal. Installing limitations on downloading, installing, and upgrading programs so that the professionals can take care of it is also a great idea.

Regardless of the type of machine that your office needs, and you will end up buying there are two things that any company should absolutely consider adding to the line

Adding a computer technical services company that can keep the machine, high or low end, is always a good idea so that the technicians can keep the computers running well and reduce potential problems from mismatches with software and hardware, viruses, and misuse of the computer systems through audits. Second most companies should have a way to back up their data on a remote site or via an external system.

As the holidays roll in, the New Year is around the corner with new challenges and new opportunities. This is the perfect opportunity for many companies to start looking at a philosophy of out with the old and in with the new with regards to their computing needs. Several companies offer a wide spectrum of computers to meet the needs of any company, especially since most fall in the middle of the two configurations listed above.