Computer Face Off - Comparing Hawaii and Mainland-Built Personal Compters, Part 1
|Mainland Vs. Local
So whats the answer?
Do you buy from a Hawaiian
manufacturer or "play it safe" and purchase a brand name box from the Mainland?
We thought the best way to answer this question was to rigorously test the performance of
locally built computers, examine the quality of components and speak to local computer
experts to see what they say.
We invited some of Hawaiis largest and most established computer buildersByteware, Computershack, Memco Systems and PDC Systems the to provide us with sample machines that we could bench test and compare to the Compaq Deskpro. Of the four companies we asked, only Memco Systems and PDC Systems accepted our invitation and provided us with locally built units to examine.
Each machine was similarly configured to reflect the average entry-level business standard. This included the minimum of a 500Mhz Pentium III processor, 64 MB of RAM, a CD ROM, a large hard drive, a 17" monitor, a network card and, a video card containing at least 8 MB of RAM. The price ceiling was $1500not including tax. The three models we looked at were $1449 for the PDC Systems unit, $1,475 for the Memco machine and $1378 for the Compaq. Ford said that the price differences between the Hawaii units and the Compaq was largely because the Compaq had a smaller capacity hard drive and 64 MB less RAM. (He noted that at the time the Compaq was delivered its price was $1500 but that the unit had since been marked down to $1378).
The ZD Benchmark tests run by Pacific-Interactive covered a wide range of performance indices including processor speed, video and graphics processing capabilities and disk drive access speed. After a number of tests Earl Ford concluded that the two Hawaii-built machines compared very favorably to the Compaq machine and in some instances, outperformed it. Ford said that processing speed was "pretty even across the board".
Ford stated that all three systems displayed more than adequate performance for business applications either in a home office or a conventional office setting. All offered good bang for the buck. "I liked the fact," said Ford, "that both locally built systems were well engineered and offered flexibility in terms of expansion and upgrades. Both the Memco and PDC System boxes had extra expansion bays for peripherals such as hard drives, CD ROM drives, tape drives, etc."
|In The Next Column:
We compare quality and durability of Mainland and locally built computers and offer tips on how to buy a system.
|Jeff Bloom is the founder of Computer Training Academy/Network Resource Center, a computer education/consulting firm based in Honolulu. His contact is firstname.lastname@example.org or 839- 1200. Rob Kay is a Honolulu-based public relations practitioner who specializes in technology. He can be reached at email@example.com or 539-3627. Suggestions for column topics are welcomed.|
Pacific Business News - Friday, February 4, 2000
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