I want to buy a new desktop PC, but there is a distinct lack of resources available. What should I be looking for in a desktop machine? Please don't say "a Macintosh."
My enormous 5-year old Dell laptop is getting slow, so it's time to buy a new PC. I already have a recent ultrabook and an iPad, so I don't need anything portable. The problem is that finding good information on new PC desktops in the age of Apple is difficult. Big review sites like C|net and PCMag don't update often, Amazon reviews are useless, and I don't want to build my own PC so component reviews aren't useful.
I want a very robust, fast machine that will last at least five years with minimal bloatware (or I'll just do a clean install of Win7 or 8). I primarily use my desktop for word processing, Netflix, and websurfing, so don't need a gaming machine-- but I don't want something that's going to take two minutes to boot, either.
I'm willing to pay up to $900 without monitor. What should I be looking for in a desktop? What processors are reasonable? Dell's performance desktops have either 4th Generation Intel Core i5 or i7 processors. This
appears to be their highest-end basic home machine with a 4th gen i7, 12GB RAM and 1TB HD, on sale for $850. Are built-in PCs OK or should I stick with a tower?
I've had good experiences with Dell, Samsung, and Lenovo, but don't want anything to do with Sony. Thoughts?