This week was a sad week for me. I jumped on one of those 40% off coupons for a Dell Dimension E510 desktop machine. In the frenzy to buy, I broke one of my cardinal rules. Research thoroughly… The machine I ordered was an Intel Dual Core 2.8GHz PCI Express based machine with 3gig of memory, 250gig hard drive, ATI X600 video card with 256meg of memory, Windows XP Media Center, 16x DVD burner, etc. delivered to my door for $850. Not bad?
From the time I ordered the machine to the time it was at my door was 48 hours. That is freaking amazing. Ever wonder why they have grown their business so fast? That is why. They have build-to-order down to the science. It was pointed out to me the machine I ordered was probably already built. Ok, I’ll concede that. At worst, they needed to configure the 3gig of memory I wanted. It’s still amazing that from the time I hit the submit button to the time my doorbell rang was 48 hours.
The problem is that after cracking open the case, I discovered to my chagrin that the power supply would not support a video card upgrade. I had planned all along to purchase the BFG Technologies NVIDIA GeForce 7900 GT and pull the ATI card. However the power supply cable octopus didn’t have a power connector for that. Heck the card I am interested in needs two power connectors but the Dell E510 doesn’t even have one. Technically, there are a couple of connectors available. One for another SATA drive and one for a CDROM drive. I should have known when I read 305 watt output. Let that be a lesson to me and you.
So I called Dell Tech Support and inquired about a power supply upgrade. Nope, nada. Decision time. Do I buy an after market supply and void the warranty or return this puppy? Return it is. One thing to note about returns. You pay for return shipping and possibly re-stocking fees.
Dell, please discount the XPS 400. I read somewhere they aren’t doing deep discounts on the XPS line. Bummer.
I may end up building a custom machine this time around. I am worried because if I do, I know I’ll be itching to build an iSCSI SAN to go with it. FYI, in a few hours, I’ll be posting a detailed post on Windows Server 2003 R2 storage management. The research is done, the post is written, but I still need to record the screencast. I’ll do that tomorrow unless I play Easy Rider all day on my Harley. Vroooommmm