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  • American made computer

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    This topic contains 13 replies, has 9 voices, and was last updated by  OscarCP 1 week ago.

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    • #2071043 Reply

      BB
      AskWoody Plus

      Hi

      There is indeed a wealth of talented and knowledgeable people here. Does anyone know where I can buy an American made computer. I used to build them myself but I haven’t done that in awhile and no longer have the desire to do so.

    • #2072469 Reply

      anonymous

      Many cities of all sizes and even smaller towns still have independent computer repair shops that will be more than willing to build a computer for you from scratch, case, motherboard, CPU, memory, video card (if you so desire), etc. The only thing you may wish to do is a little research on the specific CPU and motherboard manufacturer you may wish to have them use for the computer.

      They may even tell you the range of products they use, which may make the decision a little easier.

      I have two computers, one made by a small independent shop back east in a small town of about 3,000 people, and one made by a small independent shop out west in a city with a population of a little over 100,000 people.

       

      • #2074027 Reply

        OscarCP
        AskWoody Plus

        I live somewhere towards the southern end of the large metropolitan area stretching along the Eastern Seaboard of the USA, sometimes known as “Megalopolis”, comprising several large cities from Washington DC through Boston and practically continuous when one considers their suburbs and closely spaced surrounding villages.

        I find the possibility of having a computer repaired, not to mentioned built from scratch to my own specifications, a very interesting one. But I have no idea of how to go about finding, in a big place such as the one where I live, a shop that would have the people with the necessary know how and seriousness to be given such tasks with confidence.

        So any useful suggestions to the question of how to find such places in a big place will be really appreciated.

        Windows 7 Professional, SP1, x64 Group B & macOS + Linux (Mint) => Win7 Group W + Mac&Lx

        • #2077538 Reply

          Bill C.
          AskWoody Plus

          OscarCP:

          I suspect from your geographical description of the Megalopolis, we are relatively close. There are still places in the DMV area that will custom build a PC for you. They fall in 2 camps, the cheaper no-name components type and the more branded and higher specced components genre, and the system aggregator who will pick standard items and modify and configure them for your uses (more $, but might be a decent area to explore). The steady drop in PC prices and lower demand fofr desktops has winnowed out what used to be a much larger number of shops, but they still exist.

          My first PC was a local custom built Windows 3.1 486DX-33 (it was big beige tower 🙂 and I used it as a primary for 9 years and backup for 4 more). The second was a semi-custom built Pentium 4 Windows XP by Dell on an XPS chassis obtained from Dell through an employee discount that is still chugging along offline after minor upgrades (video and RAM) and additions.

          Subsequent PCs have been refurbs for laptops or testing, and my last two desktops were home built.

          I have found that the current shops are not as custom focused as before, but have set levels and purposes. They are not cheap, but will build to a price point or purpose. There are also some online places that will do a great job. For a local build, you will have to wade through the fanbois or this or that component or OS, etc. You go in with a concept and a goal and see if they have what it takes.

          However, for me, what I want is reliability AND longevity (meaning reasonably upgradeable) as I am not a fan of disposable tech. I get a new PC when the current one cannot do what I want to do. For this I justified the home build. With the newer AMD chips, you can get some amazing performance for cheap, although I went Intel for its longer product life and larger market share. By this I do not mean customer support, but finding upgrades and parts at a later date. The Dell, though wonderfully reliable and sturdy, taught me the downside of proprietary parts (mainly the power supply which put an upper limit on graphics).

          I also learned how some motherboard makers never released on their website any of the Spectre/Meltdown firmware updates or information on the Intel ME vulnerabilities. That maker was NOT in consideration for my last build. Both my older and newer Lenovo laptops did publicize and receive updates for those issues.

          Good luck!

        • #2084666 Reply

          wavy
          AskWoody Plus

          Pcpartpicker http://pcpartpicker.com/ , NewEgg a couple of screw drivers and a 1/4 ” nut driver maybe 😄

          Just couldn’t help myself Oscar.

          I am sure any shop still in business would be happy for your patronage. I would also suggest the classifieds for an independent, of course your level of confidence would be bolstered by word of mouth from other customers.

          🍻

          Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
    • #2078039 Reply

      RDRguy
      AskWoody Lounger

      You didn’t specify if you’re asking about desktop/workstation builders or laptop/notebook builders.

      If it’s desktop/workstations, Puget Systems (based in Seattle WA) not only offers already custom pre-built units but also provides custom build systems built to your specifications.

      https://www.pugetsystems.com/

      Though they may be a little pricy for what you might be looking for, I’ve previously purchased some parts & other pre-built sub assemblies from them for my builds and was quiet satisfied with what they offered at the time.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2078689 Reply

      RDRguy
      AskWoody Lounger

      Thought dated, another website that lists 5 custom system builders including laptops …

      https://lifehacker.com/five-best-custom-pc-builders-1664766332

    • #2078816 Reply

      Bundaburra
      AskWoody Plus

      You can have a computer made or built locally, but inevitably some of the components (disk drive, memory,  motherboard, VDU etc.) will have been made elsewhere.

      Windows 10 Pro 64 bit 1909

    • #2079156 Reply

      OscarCP
      AskWoody Plus

      Speaking for myself, I appreciate your answers and hope more will keep coming. This is one of those potentially great threads that can bring useful information that many of us can use.

      By the way, although the “do you want a desktop or laptop?” question was most likely directed to BB, here is my own answer: I am a laptop man from way back. Laptops are my thing. Preferably the ones that are not so “cool” that cannot have the box easily opened to install a new (and, or a second) HD or SSD, but are designed to make it possible. Built so one can easily replace a failing component, swap a spent battery with a new one, remove the keyboard to clean it and get the (really) sticky keys unstuck, and also be able to clean the fans and air ducts when they get clogged with lint and dust. And specially the ones that come with several ports, including: audio, HDMI, Ethernet, several USB ports of various types… and an internal optical drive! You get the idea.

       

      Windows 7 Professional, SP1, x64 Group B & macOS + Linux (Mint) => Win7 Group W + Mac&Lx

      • #2084513 Reply

        Bill C.
        AskWoody Plus

        There is a store in Fairfax, VA called Microcenter that often has off-lease business class refurbished laptops. As a refurb, they will not be current CPUs but when I last looked they had Gen6 and some Gen7 Intel CPUs. I usually go for the Lenovo Thinkpad class, but would consider a Dell.

        I find the Lenovo to really fit your needs with the easy services and parts avaiability. For instance, my wifes Thinkpad with a Gen2 i& has the same HDD/SSD and DVD mounting as my Thinkpad with a Gen5 CPU, as well as all the ports you may need for monitors, projectors, etc. Age will effect the USB versions, but both have the Blue USB ports. I notice the Lenovos seem to have very robust power jacks, which was a constant problem with some of the brands we had where I worked.

        With SSD and RAM prices so low, you can really go to town.

        I have heard very good things about Falcon Northwest and Digital Storm, 2 of the ones in the older article linked by RDRguy..

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2085205 Reply

          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          Bill C: Thanks for the tip about this Microcenter place in Virginia..

          I am also interested in refurbishing an old laptop with several new components, including a new mass storage device, such as an SSD, to speed things up, have the keyboard replaced, etc. Not a big deal, for sure, but I much rather it’s done by someone more qualified than me. It looks like this sort of thing might be done by the people in the Fairfax shop, but is not entirely clear to me from looking in their Web site. Would they do that sort of thing?

          Also, where can one find a list of shops (preferably good shops — so a better list than a yellow pages directory) that repair and refurbish computers in the same VA, MD area? Or — assuming it is practically possible to answer this, and as a matter of general interest — in any given large urban area, for that matter?

          Windows 7 Professional, SP1, x64 Group B & macOS + Linux (Mint) => Win7 Group W + Mac&Lx

    • #2084670 Reply

      jabeattyauditor
      AskWoody Lounger

      Hi

      There is indeed a wealth of talented and knowledgeable people here. Does anyone know where I can buy an American made computer. I used to build them myself but I haven’t done that in awhile and no longer have the desire to do so.

      You can’t buy what I would call an “American-made” computer, assuming you’re looking for something that is Windows or Linux-compatible.

      You can find some components that are assembled in the US, but you won’t find a US-manufactured motherboard, nor any components where *every* element is US-manufactured.

      That’s a shame, and it’s a national security issue.

      4 users thanked author for this post.
    • #2084671 Reply

      wavy
      AskWoody Plus

      VA called Microcenter

      Quite a nice store actually unfortunately they are an hour away from me. Check out their web site
      https://www.microcenter.com/?logo&utm_source=20200114_eNews_Bestsellers_R5615&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=R5615&MccGuid=2a724199-26e9-4b1b-8856-585f5ae1ddb1 The staff seemed more knowledgeable than the ‘geeks’ they do mail order but the best deals are in store only. Very nice place to just walk around for the technically inclined.

      🍻

      Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
    • #2085143 Reply

      Paul T
      AskWoody MVP

      That’s a shame, and it’s a national security issue.

      For who?
      No computer in the world is made locally – China gets close – but the design is usually country A and manufactured in country B from components from countries B, C and D.

      Any manufacturer who wants to go out of business will build a compromised machine, everyone else is in it for the money.

      cheers, Paul

      1 user thanked author for this post.

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