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Ebay Computers?

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posted on Jan, 5 2008 @ 11:16 PM
OK, I'm not the most tech savvy person on the board, but I need to upgrade just a bit. I'm also not the richest, so I can't see spending as much as an engine overhaul for my car when getting a better computer.

So, I've looked around ebay some, and spotted some fair looking deals on Pentium 4s with reasonable RAM and HDD size. I don't need anything fancy, but since I can't go any higher with my rig than the 750MHz P3 and the 512 Mb RAM that I have, I'm looking for the next level.

I can likely puzzle out the tech side. But I don't know about ebay itself. How do you know if you'll get the item you purchase? What can you do to insure that the seller is reputable? Is there much savings by going with the auction, or do they end up jumping to the "Buy Now" price right at the end of the time limit?

I'm looking at a reasonable "barebones" rig that I can just stick some memory and a HDD in and go. (Use my own DVD player/burner) So anyone have experiences with ebay that you could share? Some advice on do's and don't's?

posted on Jan, 5 2008 @ 11:40 PM
reply to post by NGC2736

But I don't know about ebay itself. How do you know if you'll get the item you purchase? What can you do to insure that the seller is reputable? Is there much savings by going with the auction, or do they end up jumping to the "Buy Now" price right at the end of the time limit?

Set up a PayPal account if you don't have one already. This will get you some protection from an untrustworthy seller.

Here's what you need to know about PayPal

Is the seller reputable? The only thing you have to judge this by is the seller's feedback. I don't buy from anyone with less than a 90-95% positive feedback or from people who have sold just a few items.

This still doesn't 100% weed out the good from the bad. Someone could have a bunch of friends leave positive feedback for items they never purchased. You have no guarantee that the item for sale is stolen either.

I don't mess with the "buy it now" option. If you can't get what you want for a fair price there is not point spending extra. There's bound to be more of the same for sale from someone else.

I never buy/sell from other countries. There are too many issues involved in doing so that could lead to problems for you. U2U me if needed.

From an experience (at one time that is) ebay seller/buyer.

posted on Jan, 6 2008 @ 12:11 AM

Caveat emptor!

If its barebones you want you can probably get it for a similar price at a reputable dealer without the hassle.

Just sayin

posted on Jan, 6 2008 @ 01:03 AM
Give in your area a try before committing to ebay. I have found great deals on craigslist and being local you can take them for a spin before plopping down the green.

Also goodwill has a website that sometimes has some incredible deals.
Shipping can be very expensive unless you can pick it up locally.

posted on Jan, 6 2008 @ 11:06 AM
I was just browsing Dell last week.

They've got a couple of decent "basic" systems for around $350-370.

Towers only, no monitor.... decent HD and memory already in it.

posted on Jan, 6 2008 @ 11:28 AM
paycow (paypal) does not guarantee anything, and will make you jump through hoops if theres a problem.
you ever read the paypal ToS?

sleazebay is not really much better IMO. your relying on some total stranger to be honest and upfront, and actually honor a warranty if theres a problem (ie damaged in transit)

avoid sleazebay if your buying PC parts.

if your buying lap tops then brand names are your best option.

but for home computers i wouldnt touch dell, hp, compaq etc.
hp now owns compaq (i worked for HP) and they love to screw around with things so you HAVE to buy their parts or it wont work (or works unreliable)
most of them are not very upgradable either. Ive seen many with one IDE lead, so one cdrom and one hdd and its max'd out.

i prefer to pick and choose parts to suit my needs.
you need to start with a good quality mother board.
all the ram and cpu power in the world are useless if you have a poorly designed motherboard made with cheap and nasty components..

The only thing a good motherboard will cost you is an extra hour researching what your getting for your money.

posted on Jan, 7 2008 @ 02:31 AM
Thanks for all the info. I really appreciate hearing everyone's take on this.

I had reservations about dealing with someone I didn't know anything about, especially for an electronics item. And while I at least know the basics of ebay better, I think I'll be dealing with somebody I trust on a more personal level.

I'm sure there are a lot of good people on that site, but I'll go another route. After reading a few of the posts here, I was fortunate enough to have contact with someone I can trust, so I'll just be buying direct.

You folks likely saved me a ton of grief and some cash. Thank you all.

posted on Jan, 7 2008 @ 12:55 PM
I got ripped off by a fraudster on Ebay while trying to buy a laptop for a girl at work. EBay /Paypal did refund some of my purchase price, but I still lost over $200. My ripoff artist had a clean record and lots of transactions on EBay, so you just never know. He got a dozen or so other people too. Indeed, let the buyer beware.

posted on Jan, 8 2008 @ 10:55 AM
that is the best thing you could have done.

you not only support a local business, but its extra assurance that your warranty is going to be honored should there be any unforseen probs down the road.

"face to face" transactions are always best when it comes to computers or any other expensive equipment.

posted on Jul, 6 2008 @ 03:11 PM
reply to post by Obliv_au

Actually paypal sorted out a problem i had when some thiefs hacked my paypal account and stole about 1000usd. They fixed it pretty quickly

Also stay away from anything HP/packard bell they are the worst computers out there. I hear dell is good you can get one for around £300

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