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When this conversation has come up in the past I have mentioned that we have
been buying Compaq/HP for six years now (150+ machines) with great results.
Very few problems and very responsive (US based for "corporate" customers)
tech support. Good warranties, no proprietary parts, competitive pricing
etc. etc.

HP printers: default "low toner" warnings are set to 10%, but you can change
this and run them dry!

Eric Hall
Technology Coordinator
Waterbury/Duxbury Schools
Washington West Supervisory Union
Waterbury, VT



> I'm a little curious as to why people were dissatisfied with Dell in the
> original discussion. We've been using Dell for the last few years with
> some satisfaction, but I'm beginning to feel a little disgruntled over
> their more recent practices. I just talked to a tech person, and when I
> told him the computer would not turn on he asked me to check the back of
> the monitor!!! I was baffled by his logic, so I asked him to explain his
> reasoning. He told me there might be some frayed cords back there. At
> that point, I knew I was at a dead end, particularly since the warranty
> had expired.
> I've heard reports that they use proprietary power supplies that could
> fry a standard ATX motherboard. I've also heard that they've tinkered
> with the bios to disallow an upgrade to the cpu so the consumer is
> forced to buy a new machine . . .
> A lot of these companies are starting to tick me off. Anyone purchase a
> Brothers printer lately? As the toner cartridge starts running low, the
> printer stops working! When you shake out the cartridge, it starts
> printing again . . . for a little while, and then stops. What's
> infuriating is that the printouts seem fine, and you are forced to
> purchase a new toner cartridge.
> Anyway . . . my rant will now subside.
> Thanks for listening.
> Charlie Cavanaugh
> 
> Raymond Ballou wrote:
> 
>> Dear List:
>>  
>> Back in the spring there was discussion on the list of people looking
>> for computer suppliers other than Dell.
>>  
>> This past summer we ordered from Acer, IBM/Lenovo and PRCtec.
>>  
>> As you might expect with the first 2 suppliers the quality has been good.
>>  
>> PRCtec on the other hand is better know for selling ink and toner than
>> computers, but about a year ago I asked on this list if anyone had
>> used them for ink and got a good response. Since then they have (at no
>> cost) taken off our hands about 100 computers (most 9 and 10 year old
>> junkers) and provided a good ink and toner product.
>>  
>> In the spring we bought 1 PRC computer and played with it extensively.
>> The teacher I put it with knew it was a loaner, but when I went to
>> take it from her, she told me it would be too much of a torture to
>> stick her with the older slower machine.
>>  
>> We bought 17 machines in late June to run during our summer GPS/GIS
>> class. The PRC machines worked out very well in that application. The
>> systems had to be useable as a desktop (towers would not work) and
>> there were some HxWxD limitations. PRC quoted the exact system I
>> needed and at a competitive price. Other suppliers tried to quote me a
>> tower to lay on it side, or exceeded the specific HWD to such a degree
>> that the system would not fit on the desk it was intended for.
>>  
>> That said, working with PRC has not been perfect, in fact I went to
>> order 25 more computer from them around the beginning of August, and
>> because of a personnel change they were unable to get a bid in on
>> time. They have a new person working on Vermont accounts.
>>  
>> If you happen to look into PRC for computer equipment, do not mention
>> me. I have no wish for this to be a commercial for PRC, nor am
>> I looking for referrals (that is also why there is no PRC contact info
>> included here).
>>  
>> I send this merely so you know about my experience with
>> this alternative supplier.
>>  
>>  
>> R.
>>  
>