How to Shop for a Desktop

Posted by Aventis Systems, Inc on September 2nd, 2017

Shopping for a computer can be a daunting challenge especially if you are not well versed in PC specifications. Even more confusing is coming across a model such as the Optiplex 790 by Dell and finding that there are multiple versions available for purchase at different prices. If you have had trouble differentiating between price points, here is a simple guide to help you choose the desktop that is right for your needs.


Choosing the right PC can be simplified to knowing what specifications to pay attention to. In the same way that knowing how much MPG a car has helps you choose a vehicle, so should knowing what speed the CPU is in a PC. The Central Processing Unit is the brain of the computer, and is the most important specification to pay attention to. This is because every process run on your PC will be funneled through the CPU. The faster the speed of it, the faster the PC. Most Optiplex 790 PCs come with a processor that has a speed of 3.0-3.3GHZ, which is a sufficient speed for most office tasks. Spending the extra money for a faster processor will be worth it if you intend to use the desktop for intensive tasks such as video editing and/or gaming.

Hard Drive

If the CPU is the brain of the computer, then the hard drive is the heart. In terms of the Dell Optiplex 790, this is where you will see the most variation in price. This is because hard drives vary in price based on size. In general, standard hard drives will be anywhere from 80GB to 500GB. If you plan to store a large amount of documents and especially pictures or video, you will definitely want to opt for the larger hard drive.


Besides the CPU and the hard drive, it is also important to know how much Random Access Memory (RAM) a PC has. The RAM is essentially where temporary memory is stored for the CPU to access when it is performing a task. Instead of directly accessing the hard drive for the information it needs, the information is copied to the RAM for faster completion and greater efficiency. For general office tasks, 2GB of RAM is sufficient. If you are doing something more intensive it may be a good idea to upgrade to 4GB or even 8GB if you want to be thorough.

When choosing a specific model from a lineup that a PC such as the Optiplex 790 offers, the CPU and the Hard Drive are the two biggest factors to pay attention to. If you are using it as a basic workstation, a CPU with a speed of 3.0GHz or higher and a hard drive of at least 250GB should be sufficient. If you are working with pictures and video on a regular basis, it may be a good idea to upgrade to a faster CPU and bigger hard drive. You can also consider including a dedicated graphics card for tasks such as rendering video and/or gaming.

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Aventis Systems, Inc

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Aventis Systems, Inc
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