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So you are thinking of buying a new computer

By: Vinh Dao Posted: July-30-2008 in
Vinh Dao

Purchasing a computer can be a daunting and confusing experience in Phnom Penh with a multitude of brands and models for one to choose from and few restrictions on how reputable the dealership has to be to comply with the law.

Whether it is a desktop or laptop, one of the most important decisions to purchasing a computer is to define what it will be used for; will it be used as a primary multi-media center, an office workhorse or just a tool to surf the internet?

Whatever the decision, the consumer will need to balance features, performance and price to come up with a system that will keep them happy and their choice productive and able to comply with their demands for years to come.

There are several factors that a buyer needs to consider in a purchase.

One major factor in deciding on your ideal computer is mobility.

The benefit of choosing a laptop is obvious if portable computing is what you need. If not, a desktop can easily satisfy your computing needs.

First off, that small package comes with a price. A laptop will be significantly more expensive compared to a similarly configured desktop. Desktop computers are also far more expandable. As a new graphics card comes out, or a hard drive becomes full, they can easily and cheaply be upgraded.

In the modern age of computing where new product cycles are measured in months rather than years, expansion capacity will increase the productive life of a desktop much longer than that of a laptop.

Internally, three major components that a buyer needs to look at are the CPU, RAM and the Hard Drive.

The CPU, or central processing unit, is the brain of your computer. The faster the CPU's clock, the faster it can perform instructions. Modern CPU's such as Intel's Core Duo offer two or more processors which allow it to be more efficient when running many different programs simultaneously.

Random Access Memory, or RAM, is what the computer uses to juggle the information it is processing at that moment. The more RAM your computer has, the faster it will start, run and end applications.

The minimum considered adequate to run newer programmes is 512 megabytes, but one gigabyte will easily support multiple applications simultaneously.

People who plan to use their computers for media editing or for computer gaming are advised to stock up on as much RAM as possible.

The hard drive is like your real life filing cabinet. It's where you store your stuff, and the more room you have, the more stuff you can store. Though 40 to 80 gigabytes is considered entry level. They are pretty cheap too now with a 300gb drive + case coming in at 160U$ so you can easily add external hard drives of various sizes and prices.

The service warranty is also an important consideration to look at when looking to purchase a computer, new or used. The service is how many companies describe the repair of a computer if it, or a component within it, breaks.

Most computer retailers offer one-year service warranties on their products but it is prudent to find out if the store does their own warranty work in-store, or if they will have to ship the computer away to be fixed. If it has to be shipped away, find out who pays the shipping - you or them.

Where to purchase your computer is another important decision. Reputable dealerships which are recommended by others are always preferable.

PTC Computer Technologies is one of the oldest computer retailers in Phnom Penh. PTC offers over two floors of retail space on Monivong Boulevard. An authorized Toshiba distributor, PTC offers over 70 different laptops along with their own brand of affordable desktop computers.

Located in the Phnom Penh Center on Street 274, Anana Computers sells desktops and laptops made by both Asus and Dell, and Anana is an authorized dealer for both. They also carry the odd Apple laptop and have a very nice selection of LCD monitors.

There are only two Authorized Apple Distributors in Phnom Penh: Uni Young Technologies and iOne. Both carry a full complement of Apple's desktops and latops along with accessories for anything Apple. Both are also Authorized Apple Resellers and offer the option of a three-year Applecare warranty.

If your budget is a major concern, Phnom Penh has many second hand computer stores, most located along Kampuchea Krom and Charles De Gaulle boulevards, several of which have good reputations.

Most computers sold in these stores will be very slow by modern computing standards but if you are just looking for a straight internet computer with some word processing, this is a great alternative to newer, more expensive options.

Anana Computer Co., LTD
Phnom Penh Center, Street 274

PTC Computer Technologies
#250 252 Monivong Boulevard

iOne -iOne Centre Building
#320 Monivong Blvd

Uni Young Technologies
2D1, Street 53

The Advisor, 4th Edition


I prefer having a laptop, it

I prefer having a laptop, it is more convenient and I can take it anywhere with me. Buying second hands won't be a problem as long as you make sure that the item you are buying has the features you need because some of the second hands are only upgraded versions of older models.


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