Buy or Build a New Desktop Computer? I Recommend Buying

computer keyboard - desktop computer I was tempted to write an article about building a new desktop computer from scratch, but I decided against it. It doesn’t make any sense to build a new desktop computer now that the prices have come way down.

Years ago, more than 10, I built two different desktop computers because I wanted them to last longer than the name brand computers. Each one lasted well over seven years. I won’t bother to do that again because I don’t think the effort is worth my time.

Affordable Desktop Computers

Desktop computers used to be expensive. The first one I bought in 1994 cost me well over $2000 USD. Compared to a desktop computer that can be bought for less than $500 USD today, it was pretty weak. It was a Packard Bell with a Pentium 60 Processor (I think) and 72 megabytes of RAM (yes, far less than the smallest today) and it came pre-installed with Windows 3.11. I’m pretty sure it had a hard drive of less than 500 megabytes and slower than the gigabyte monsters of today.

When I first bought a desktop computer in the Philippines (in 2007), I still winced at the prices. I couldn’t even buy a new desktop computer in Olongapo City. I had to travel to the longest mall in the Philippines back then, SM City in San Fernando, Pampanga.

In 2011, a new computer store opened at the Subic Bay Freeport Zone called “Bodega Site”. The day I went there, I saw six complete systems ready to go in the main area that doubled as their show room. Although I decided on a specific system to buy, I didn’t have the money to pay for it. I returned a month later and only two of those systems remained. I had to have my desired system built for me on the spot. Even though I had a couple of things added to it, it still came out to less than $600 USD.

In 2012, SM City Olongapo opened in Olongapo City and the Harbor Point mall opened at the Subic Bay Freeport Zone. There’s a CD-R KING store in each of them and it’s the best place to get computer accessories and peripherals, among other gadgets.

My Plan to Buy a New Desktop Computer

Bodega Site has an older flyer as a PDF linked from their site, but I’m sure I can find something similar by the time I return to the Philippines. The system I like has a 18.5 inch LED monitor, which I don’t need, so I can get it for less for what it would cost me today and that’s $375 USD (after converting pesos to dollars). It would probably be close to $300 USD.

The desktop computer sitting in the master bedroom of our house in the Philippines has issues (probably a bad power supply unit) and the desktop computer my older son left me here in Phoenix has issues (and I already replaced a bad hard drive). I hate using a laptop computer, which is what I’m using now. I have thick finger tips and there just isn’t a laptop computer keyboard in existence that I can use without hitting the wrong keys (and I’m a touch typist).

The plan is to get a new desktop computer and cannibalize what I can from the ones that have issues. I think I’ll keep more of my hair that way.

January 16, 2014


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rex (2014)

San po ang bodega site sa gapo? I have a plan kasi na bumili ng desktop computer para sa haus. thanks...

RT Cunningham (2014)

At the freeport. Use the Rizal Avenue gate. It's at the second intersection, on the right side.

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