new computer build, question

edited March 2022 in Help Choosing Parts


several months ago, purchased two dell 3450 small form factors, 16 gigs, 512 ssd, - short version, horror story, machines kept freezing, ended up filing Better busines Bureau complaint after 100+ hours of phone diagnostics (documented on ATT log,) 150+ interactions with bsic tech support, and 100+ emails to escalated. they finally are issueing refund. All i wanted were two machines that worked. I've had dell's before. but these kept freezing, no keyboard, mouse, etc. They even shipped me a replacement, and the VIDEO CARD on that did not even register at bootup, and they told me i had to do more diagnostics (I have 40+ years of computer experience).

I would like to possibly get two computers (i help my sister with hers, so we get mirrored computers) - similar form factor to the dell 3450 small form factor - decent intel processor, 16 gig memory, 512 SSD or card, whtaever, and space for second SATA SSD drive, as we have 1tb drives to insert, for data storage. decent onboard video (no additional card needed), but space for additional card down the road, if we wanted. decent number of usb 3 ports, etc, etc, and windows 11 PRO so we can use bitlocker.

if we spec this out, how does the warranty/exchane work

IF MIcRO CENTER builds it


if WE build it?

i do not want to be using this machine, and in about a month have it freeze multiple times, and then be told i have to do 100's of hours of diagnostics. The software i install (and had installed on the new dell's) was same software that had been on the OLDER RELIABLE dells that we were using, and those machines were very reliable, and not freezing.

I am just paranoid at getting a new machine and going through what we we just went through.

anyway, any feedback appreciated



  • PowerSpec_MikeW
    PowerSpec_MikeW PowerSpec Engineer
    5 Insightfuls First Anniversary First Comment 5 Awesomes


    We do have in store warranties on our custom built systems that you can purchase. We also offer bundle replacement plan bundles on BYO that you can purchase. If we build it and you warranty it then we would troubleshoot for you and use the plan to replace the component. If you built it with the BYO bundle, you would troubleshoot or bring it on for a diagnostic, and then we would issue a gift card to purchase the replacement component.

    If you want a prebuilt system with a warranty you should look at our PowerSpec systems. I know you mentioned an Intel process, but the first system that jumped out at me was the B734. Similar in dimensions to the Dell Precision, not quite as compact. Ryzen 7 5700G Processor, Vega Graphics, 16GB of RAM, 1TB SSD. You can add two additional 2.5" SATA drives to the system. Windows 11 Pro, TPM and Secure Boot are enabled as defaults.

    1 Year manufacturers warranty, service is provided in store. You can contact us via technical support, but there's no issue at all for you just to bring the system into the store and drop it off for service. 48 hour guarantee on the diagnostics. We'll install the data drive for you at the store free with the PowerSpec. Details on that here:

  • thanks very much for reply.

    i will look more at it in next several days. QUESTION, do you have any other compact case-type computers? I can live with the more-full-size, but my spacing works better with the more compact case.

    re: the purchased warranty - suppose we got a machine freezing like my current horrendous experience. and suppose you did all kind of diagnostics and did not find a part that was screwed up (that is what hapened with dell, we sent it back, NO PART was found to be a problem, they reloaded hte factory image (I had done the same thing), and it still froze repeatedly. what happens then?

  • PowerSpec_MikeW
    PowerSpec_MikeW PowerSpec Engineer
    5 Insightfuls First Anniversary First Comment 5 Awesomes


    We have a whole plethora of cases for custom builds. For PowerSpec, you'll see our 185 chassis that's a little shorter, but a little wider. No 2.5" bays. We have a larger 205 micro ATX case that supports 2x2.5" and 1x3.5". Then you'll see the 205 mid tower we use on gaming PC's. The largest is 19.1x8.05x16.3.

    I'll give my opinion on your Precision 3450 issue. Assuming I'm interpreting the issue as a freeze with the cursor on screen, system stays on frozen in that state. I'd look at your drive first. If it's an HDD or a SATA SSD, sounds about right for that type of failure. You won't confirm with a diagnostic unless you're lucky enough to catch the failure in the act. GPU is also a potential culprit there, but you should be able to rule that out. Spam the shift key rapidly, see if hear you the sticky keys prompt, that'll rule out a video issue versus freezing.

    For warranty service, the store will provide you with the full terms of the warranty. They'll be able to provide more information on situations that we've encountered. I don't recall ever having a system in hand that I couldn't solve a hardware issue with. If that meant it came down to being a motherboard on a laptop and the cost of replacement was greater than the system, and that resulted in replacing the system then that is the solution.

  • thanks very much for reply !

    i will look online at the cases, etc, and then come in and figure out what to put into it.


  • Ian
    Ian admin
    First Anniversary 5 Insightfuls 5 Likes 5 LOLs

    You're welcome, if you have any other questions, please let us know!

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