Whooppeee Do a whole £0.99
Dell must be joking.
not even enough for a Pint.
Dell is charming PC punters with a promo and the reaction is much the same as that of the ambassadors' guests when they were handed spherical balls of hazelnut goodness in the Ferrero Rocher ads. A Reg reader who is helping to prop up the PC industry by buying one, chanced upon the latest hot promo for an Inspiron 15 5000 …
One of the many reasons that I've never had a Dell on site that was purchased by me.
Nearest they got was a PowerEdge that I inherited briefly before retiring it in favour of a much more powerful, cheaper and smaller server.
Honestly, they phone me up - via various resellers - and I tell them where to go on the basis of the name alone.
And people say to me "Oh, so we're getting some new Dells or something, then" and I give them a look that explains why their answer is quite that bloody stupid.
I was looking to replace our critically rubbish Synology SAN with something a bit more reliable so as part of the research process tried to contact Dell about their EqualLogic arrays.
On the website it explained that for more details I should chat online.
Chat online can't be used if you have more than 100 employees and you have to phone.
The phone number given for companies with more than 100 employees is 0844 338 1021
When you phone that:
*Select that you are a new customer (selected option 1)
*If you are a home user press 1 or are interested for business press 2 (selected option 2)
*If you require a new laptop, desktop or server press 1 or any other request press 2(selected option 2 - as I wanted a SAN)
*Then you get a message which just says "to find out more information on our products please visit us online, goodbye."
WTF? You have someone calling you up - a hot lead and you are saying nah, go away.
After trying this a few times, as I thought I had missed an option somewhere I tried the laptop, desktop, server option they couldn't help but they said they would get someone to call me back.
Never got a call back, Never even going to try Dell for anything again. There is a reason why we currently have only HP desktops and servers.
Tech sellers seem to offer illusory discounts and promise more than they intend to supply on a regular basis. Overpricing items even though they aren't selling, offering the premium or wholesale customers prices that turn out to be higher than they can buy the stuff in the local computer store and selling items that sound good but have been subtly (or not) downgraded are all common.
That being said my Dell a year ago came with a spec I've not seen at anything like the price I paid, from any supplier since, including Dell. I don't know if I caught them on a good day, but they've been almost a couple of hundred quid more, since then.
And to show that it's not just tech suppliers, when my local pet shop closed down last week they had lots of signs saying "Everything must go/SALE/Clearance" and so on.
Was anything actually cheaper?
Not even in the last hour of trading.
All I'd wanted was some gravel for the tank.Maybe I'd have been tempted by a few bargains, if they'd been evident. But that guy would rather have had his teeth pulled out that let anything go cheaper.
And in fact I got all the things I needed cheaper than him by going to Pets At Home.
So maybe it's not just tech sellers.
Maybe there's a certain kind of seller that would rather bury stock than sell it at a smaller margin.
I suddenly remembered a couple stories from years ago.
Before computers were the commodity item they've become they were particularly expensive and uncommon in the UK for a while. (Might have been early '80s). According to the computer magazines of the time the story goes that US manufacturers tried to kick start a market in the UK by dropping their export prices to us.
But the importers simply hiked the prices of the boxes they were selling back up and held on to the bigger margins for the same low level of sales.
At the time I'd told my father about this and he'd said he'd worked for clothing firms that took the same attitude. They absolutely wouldn't drop their margins for greater sales, even when they weren't selling enough to make money. In his words, "They'd rather sell 200 with £10 profit on each than 2000 with £5 profit on each".
Always not processing your VAT exemptions. Providers of weird hardware since before 1995. Seriously, prototype ISA boards that don't fit their supposedly compliant cases, optical drives with custom interface chips so you HAVE to buy one of theirs, machines where you daren't take windows 8 off when they f*** up the order to put Windows 7 on because you need to install a F6 driver, but the USB driver isn't in the Windows 7 ISO build, so you basically have to either take the machine apart to get at some weird esoteric thing to build a way of getting the driver on, OR take a crash course in building a custom Windows 7 installation DVD, only to discover that you need drivers for both the SATA controller AND the frigging SSD they put in there which doesn't work with the lowest common denominator drivers like they are supposed to. I hate Dell. With a passion.
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And yet mine ( mentioned above). has been great.
I've had no problem slapping in a second HDD and DVD writer.
It has worked fine for a year (desperately finding wood to touch).
Hard to judge performance in the real world, because I don't really need an I7 with 16gb ram. But no complaints from me.
The last time I bought DELL was 2007 (Vista)... I won't be doing that kind of self-harm ever again. (Long live Linux....)
With crappy Dell quality... Lenovo's unforgivable Superfish scandal.... Overpriced HP & crappy quality.... Asus dodgy motherboards / Nvidia glitches (had to return 3 ROG's).... Acer, bit of a mixed bag... That leaves MSI, which I've never tried before...
Anybody got good things say about MSI? (or others with global shipping / warranty?)
I used to swear by Asus, now I swear at them; my last Asus mobo had a SATA port FALL OFF!!
I replaced it with a MSI board - which has its own issues;
BIOS updates have been known to kill the boards - even if you HAVE downloaded the correct one.
The Southbridge can run insanely hot (80C!!) according to various monitoring programs.
And worst of all, sometimes it will refuse to recognise any USB device when trying to do something pre Windows environment - including the USB keyboard and mouse! (ie a boot error asking you to push an "F" key)
This is all shades of Gigabyte; I've had THREE of their AMD boards all fail with the same fault; the original failed after a few months, and two replacements turned up already broken (ethernet port u/s).
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