User Rating: Excellent
Ease of Use:
Quality of Tech Support:
Pros:Spacious monitor, high speed, 1.4 GHz
Cons:Costly and restricted when wanting interchangeable parts.
The Bottom Line: A fine fast computer with loads of features. May be a bit much for the average at home user.
I once was a large fan of Dell computer systems and their reliability. But over time and most recently something has changed.
Recommend this product?
It has been not so long ago that I handed this system, the Dell Dimension 8100 Series over to my sister-in-law. My reasons were simple really. It wasn't that it did not perform well. It actually is quite wonderful, but not for me personally.
There was a time that you could take a Dell desktop and change things around in it. Unlike other brands such as Compac and Gateway. Parts partiality seems to be the big thing here. And for those of you that have no clue as to what I am referring to, then let me enlighten you.
In my short but serious computer knowledge history, I have come to respect the ideals of building your own computer. There was a time that you could interchange mother-boards, modems, etc in the Dell computers. Don't get me wrong here. I understand perfectly the reasoning behind the non-immigration of parts. It makes the computer moguls more money in the long run when you need to replace a part and in order to do so you must resort back to the originators to do this. But I for one like to experiment with different brands of devices and or hardware.
Now it would seem that you can no longer do this. Not to the extent that one might wish anyway. So, I felt the need to replace this computer with a less expensive one and sell the Dell Dimension 8100 Series to my sis-in-law. With the cheaper model (generic), I was able to build the monster that I have today. Someday I will find an appropriate spot to review it in.
Luckily for my sis-in-law, I am a great gal and only charged her the remainder of my note. I only owed some $600 bucks on it. Note here..she loves it and there fore I am going to give to you a review on the most flattering features that I experienced during my short ownership with the Dell Dimension 8100 Series.
The Dell Dimension 8100 Series is a nice to look at system. It is reliable and functions quite well. Pretty simple to operate. No more difficult than any other computer.
People, this computer is pretty awesome. With a 19" M991 monitor and the 1.4 GHz and Pentium 4 processor, you can't beat it. Not even with a stick. But I feel that for the average person, this may be just a bit much. Coupled with that 40 GB hard drive (7200 RPM), I feel that most would never use that much. With the exception of those gamer fanatics, of course! I am referring to the average person who only uses the computer at home for pleasure. A great machine with much needed space and speed though for the office or even the home office. Included with those spec's is the 128MB PC600 RDRAM, naturally.
I found that when using this dream machine, it was smoother operating than most other brands of computers. Pages load fast and most important the download time in comparison to that of most others was outstanding. The graphics looked great and the sound was crisp and clear with just the right amount of base to make it sound rich and true to life. The keyboard was quiet and didn't have that loud clicking noise that irritates me so. Windows loads quickly with out much delay and though I had not had the chance to perform much downloading and cluttering of my task bar, I feel it would have still done quite well.
When I brought the Dell Dimension 8100 Series home and began to set it up, I found that it was pretty easy really. It will come with color coded instructions.
This unit came with Microsoft Windows 2000 and I believe that was an extra from the dealer who sold it to me. I don't think that it is the norm for you to get this. I also received $700 more bucks in extra software. Another thing that I don't think you are able to get, if you buy it online anyway. Now, I let the Windows 2000 go with the unit. It was already loaded and plus, I didn't really care for it. I am an old Windows 98 second edition junkie. But I did keep the games and Office 2001 that I got with it.
I didn't get a free printer or scanner. I guess that was why I had the software included. I bought the Dell Dimension 8100 Series at the place here locally that I like to refer to as my puter doc. He builds computers and will also sell new units as well.
The speakers that followed this guy home was AltecLansing ACS340 Speakers, including the sub-woofer. V.90 56K modem and the Dell quiet key board. I think that is what it was called. The CD ROM Drive was the 48x Max Variable and just your standard 3.5 in. floppy drive.
There was a "cheap" mouse sporting only 2 buttons and I do mean cheap. I hated that. The sound card was a Turtle Beach Santa Cruz DSP and the graphics card included was Graphics Card 32MB NVIDIA GeForce2 MX 4X AGP. Not that impressive really. In my honest opinion.
The warranty is the standard garb you get with most any computer. A one year parts and labor and a three year parts delivery. Included also is the lifetime tech support. But that is only applicable for the original owner, I believe.
As with most big name computer companies they will include a years worth of free internet service. I can not review on this because I never used it. I have a local service that is great and I wouldn't change even for free. But for those of you who would be interested to know, Dell also includes one free year of internet service that is connected to Dellnet which is powered by MSN. Who else?
Was it worth the price to me? Well, I suppose that if it were not for my feelings of restriction in interchanging parts, I would have to say, yes. It is fairly expensive but I have seen richer. I paid $1500 for it and I think that it was reasonable. You will find it to be more expensive online and at other retailers. I have a standing mechanical relationship with my puter doc, if you will, and he cuts me slack on everything I buy from him. And in consideration that I did not get a free pc camera, scanner, or printer, I guess it would come out to be about the same. I can tell you this. No longer than I used the Dell Dimension 8100 Series before selling it to my sis-in-law for $600 bucks, I have to say that I did not get my personal monies worth. But that is my fault.
I would recommend the Dell Dimension 8100 Series to people who need loads of storage and speed. Or to those gaming junkies who need downloading speed and storage. But for the everyday, occasional user, I say it is too much unnecessary brawn for them. Final thought is this: A wonderful machine and I feel a step ahead of it's time!
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Amount Paid (US$): 1500.
Operating System: Windows
Processor speed: over 1000
RAM: More than 256
Internal Storage: CD-RW
Hard Drive (GB): 31-40