Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

So You're Buying a Computer for the Family

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

So You're Buying a Computer for the Family

Article excerpt

Byline: Mike Clark, Times-Union Reader Advocate

Ed Stansel, the Times-Union's editorial systems director, has this advice for those shopping for a family-friendly computer:

If you're shopping for a Windows PC, you'll be tempted by ads for entry-level computers costing $500 or less. These machines are fine for simple tasks such as e-mail, Web browsing and word processing. But if you're buying a family PC, you'll want a little more muscle to handle games, video editing and other demanding applications.

Here are some key features to look for:

-- Processor: Budget models typically come with an Intel Celeron processor. For faster performance, go for an Intel Pentium 4 or a comparable AMD Athlon chip.

-- Memory: Although many PCs come with 256 megabytes of memory (listed as RAM or SDRAM), upgrading to 512 MB is better. You can add memory later fairly cheaply, but you'll need to buy the right flavor and install it yourself or get someone else to do it for you. …

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