I have owned more computers than I can remember, and I’m always on the lookout for talented team members. The roster changes from day to day, but I’ll try to keep this page updated to reflect what’s in the stable at any given moment. ;)
A word about names: I just give each computer the serial number off the bottom of the case. I know, it’s boring, but it helps me distinguish between similar models. :|
Dell Inspiron 8200: 6m47421
- 2.60GHz Mobile Intel Pentium 4M CPU SL6WZ
- 2Gb PC2100 memory
- 64Mb Nvidia GeForce4 MX 440 Go NV18
- Intel Corporation PRO/Wireless 2200BG [Calexico2] MiniPCI network adapter
- 60Gb 7200rpm Hitachi Travelstar 7K100 HTS721060G9AT00 hard drive
- 120Gb 5400rpm Western Digital Scorpio Blue SATA WD1200BEVS hard drive in modular SATA adapter caddy
- 2x USB1.1 ports, two right and one left
- Adaptec AUA-1422 DuoConnect USB2.0/1394 CardBus adapter ;)
- 1600×1200 UXGA LCD
- Cirrus Logic CS4205 rev 3 audio
We all make mistakes in life, and one of my smaller ones was sending this machine on to a new owner. It would be a while before I could reclaim an 8000-series machine, and afford to outfit it properly.
The 8000s were some of the most flexible, customizable machines Dell ever made (in my unprofessional opinion) and a top-of-the-line refit will run you less than the cost of a department store ultralight — and you might even get similar performance from it.
A few caveats, if you wander down this road:
- The 8200 is the only one that can run the 2.6Ghz P4, and only after the last BIOS update is applied.
- The NV18 is a decent video card, but is actually just a glorified Geforce 2. Count yourself lucky if you can get your hands on a working Nvidia Geforce4 700 GL Go. I see some online in overstock stores, but they’re nearly US$100.
- Dell never documented the 2Gb memory limit for this machine, and given the weight of the web these days, you’ll probably want it. Even just typing a document in Google Docs can thow you into a fit of paging.
- The mini-PCI bay will hold an abg wireless card, but most of the 8200s I’ve seen come stock with Broadcom 4318 cards. Dump that garbage and get yourself a proper Intel PRO/2200.
- While you’re at it, get yourself a modular bay for a second hard drive, a modular DVD+-RW, a 250Mb zip drive, and multicolor palmrest inserts! :D
Tackle all that, and congratulations: You’ve built your own Precision M60. ;)
I wouldn’t have invested in a machine like this if I didn’t have some sort of serious attachment to it. The 8200s in particular seem to hold their value, and while parts are not expensive, they’re definitely sitting in the low end of that price curve that I’ve talked about. If you can see your way to spending about $150 on all the upgrades, gadgets and gizmos, you’ll be terrifically pleased. It’s a rare bird that is this customizable and not horrifically expensive. ;)