If the price is right, I wouldnt mind buying one. If I can save money assembling it, then I would rather go that route. Thanks for all the info guys! I will take your suggestions and check out the provided links. I will post back when I know what I'm going to get! Thanks again!
buying a prebuilt proprietary system such as Dell, HP etc... vs building your own really comes down to a matter of personal preference. in my experience building your own is usually a little more expensive that buying a proprietary mass built system, but this is generally due to the fact that you can rarely find a mass built system that in configured just the way you want it. . The times when build your own is cheaper is if you go to someone like alienware and customize a tower, at that point getting exactly what you want is indeed much more expensive than building your own tower of the same configuration.
heres what you need to consider,
proprietary pros: 1. generally cheaper than building your own (depending on system hardware configuration),
2. entire system under same warranty, though you need to make sure there is a ceritfied service center in your area. If you live in a rural area you may end up having to ship your system out of the area for repair or driving many miles to get there.
3. tech support offered through proprieter.
4. OS Included, the cost of buying an operating system can be rather expensive if you don't have your own already that you can install on a self built system.
proprietary CONS: 1. warranty-- you CAN'T do ANYTHING hardware wise (such as installing a new video card) to that tower yourself without voiding it any and all work MUST be done someone the proprieter deems a qualified service center.
2. warranty timeframe usually sucks like 1 yr or purchase extended for xxx extra. depending on how busy a service center is you may be without your system for a week or more.
3. VERY RARELY can you find the configuration you WANT you are usually giving up 1 or 2 features you want and getting something you don't want. such as it is difficult to find the video, CPU, and RAM you want all in the same system. proprieters configure for the market not the individual, a lot of times they will sacrifice a G of RAM to offer a slightly better video card etc....
4. BLOATWARE you get to uninstall (though the amount is coming down)
5. if you want to overclock the system you will void warranty if you get caught. must return clocks to factory settings before repairs, and if it is deemed that damage was done due to overclocking the warranty will not cover the repair.
Building your own Pro: 1. everything is still under warranty though through each manufacture all you have to do is register each component with the manufacturer, however, alot of companies today are offering 3-5yr warranties on items like power supplies and video cards. some like XFX offer a DOUBLE LIFETIME warranty on VGA cards which means it is under warranty for the life YOU own it AND if you sell or give it someone else they offer lifetime warraty to them provided they register the card as being the second owner. Something YOU WILL NEVER see with a proprietary system
2. You can configure the system hardware EXACTY how you want it.
3. you CAN do ANYTHING you want hardware wise to the system yourself when you want, you don't have to wait for a warranty to expire to avoid voiding warranties, if you want to upgrade your video or CPU in 6 months or so you can. and the original parts will remain under warranty until stated timeframe (ie. does not expire just because someone besides a ceritfied service center touched it)
4. overclocking will only effect your warranty if it is deemed damage was caused as a result of the clocking. Though VGA card manufacturers are a little more tolerant these days and don't question it much, not sure about Intel but AMD is still pretty strict and will not honor warranty if they deem overclocking was the damage factor.
build your own CONS: 1. you have to know what your doing because you get to do all troubleshooting and repairs if needed. your only help is the internet or manufacture tech support. taking you system to a service center is exptremely expensive if you can't solve the problem. on the flip side if you don't know something you may end up spending hours trying to figure it out but now you have learned another piece of the computer puzzle and expanded your knowledge.
2. if parts fail you have to either RMA the part to the manufac or buy a replacement while you wait on RMA.
3. again not sure about Intel but AMD partly bases warranty on the HSF, if you use an after market HSF (though good ones cool MUCH better) and it fails causing the CPU to fail they will not honor the warranty. AMD requires the use of their HSF. not sure if they have laxed on this or not, it has been a few years since I knew of anyone having to exersize AMD warranty.
I personally have NEVER owned a proprietary desktop system, my sister owned 2 and I learned from her headaches with the manufacturer that it was NOT worth it for me. I have always built my own and my sister has learned her lesson too, she now comes to me for new desktops as well as a few others do to. the only proprietary systems my friends and family buy these days are laptops and that is only because I have not yet ventured into building my own.
My main reason for HATING proprietary systems is the inability to get exactly what I want and the inability to make any hardware changes without voiding warranty.
as well I enjoy bulding systems.