ADVICE ON BUYING A MOTHERBOARD
Last updated: 12/20/99
BEWARE OF COMPUTER FAIRS. Use caution. I am not
saying that you cannot buy good quality items at an excellent price at a
computer fair or flea market. On the other hand, I have seen many items bought
from these sources that are defective. Remember, there are a lot of rejects
out there: motherboards that do not pass computer manufacturer quality assurance
tests and motherboards that have been returned from end-users, etc.. The
adage, "if it seems to good to be true, it probably is," certainly
If you buy something from one of these sources, be sure
you know how to you return a defective item after the fair or flea market
has left town?
WARRANTY AND RETURN POLICY Any thought of the possibility
of having to return an item is often obscured by a focus on upfront cost
and is hindsight for many buyers.
LOOK IT OVER. After you receive the motherboard
inspect it carefully. Did you get everything? Did you receive the correct
User Manual? Is the board really new? Does the anti-static bag
look like the board has been in out of it several times? Look at the
donuts around the holes used to fasten the board to the chassis. Do
you see any signs (screw marks) that it has been in a chassis before? Is
the box in good condition? Is the board flat? Any bent or broken
corners? Did you receive the most recent version of the board? How
old is the BIOS?
IT WON'T LAST FOREVER. You won't be able to
buy away obsolescence. In my experience, a motherboard is obsolete
in three years or less.
This is my first draft of this article. I will try
to improve it as time goes on and things change.
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