Don?EUR(TM)t Go El Cheapo On Digicams

Published Date
01 - Mar - 2006
| Last Updated
01 - Mar - 2006
Don’t Go El Cheapo On Digicams
Q. I want to buy a new digital camera within a budget of Rs 10,000. I want a device from a good brand, one that's simple to use. It should have good enough quality for 4 x 6-inch printouts.
Tanul Saxena

There are lot of digital cameras available in the market boasting of high megapixel count sensors. Most such cheap digcams are not worth buying, because they use extrapolation to achieve high-resolution images, and lose out on picture clarity in the process.

Your budget is good enough for a decent entry-level digital camera. I would suggest Canon's PowerShot A410, which has a 3.2 megapixel sensor, 3.2x optical zoom, and runs on standard AA batteries. It also has 14 shooting modes as well as PictBridge, so you can connect it directly to a compatible printer. It retails at about Rs 9,500.

Legal Security
Q. I recently used Norton's Internet Security 2006 and was pleased with its performance and features. I would like to purchase it legally. Can you tell me where I can get it from?
Sunil Sharma

Symantec's Norton Internet Security 2006 is a compilation of Norton AntiVirus 2006, Norton Personal Firewall, Norton Privacy Control, Norton AntiSpam and Norton Parental Control. This suite retails for $69, which translates to about Rs 3,220. Tech-pacific is the retailer for Symantec products in India, and you can call them at
We're glad to see an increasing number of people like you who are willing to pay for good software!

A Laptop For General Use
Q. I want to buy a good branded laptop for less than Rs 50K. I will be using the laptop for general day-to-day work such as browsing the Internet, e-mail, music and office applications.
Achiranshu Garg

Laptop prices have dipped recently, and it's possible to get a decent laptop for under Rs 50,000. As for the configuration, I'd recommend a Pentium M 1.6 - 1.7 GHz processor, a minimum of 256 MB of RAM, a 40 GB hard drive, a 14 - 15 inch display (if you are comfortable with a wide screen, buy one), Intel GMA 900 graphics and a combo drive. When it comes to brands, HP and IBM are the favourites, followed by Acer, the reason being a good after-sales service infrastructure across the country. 

I want To Go Original!
Q. I want to buy original copies of Ashampoo WinOptimizer Platinum 3 and Adobe Photoshop Elements 4. Who are the official dealers for these in India?

Ashampoo have no Indian dealer who can sell you the product-you will have to buy WinOptimizer online at It retails at $49 (Rs 2,200). For Adobe Photoshop Elements 4, you can contact Adobe Systems India at 0120-2444711, or send an e-mail to sandeepm@ to find a dealer near you.

HD Reliability, Size, And Warranty
Q. I have a branded LG PC with a 40 GB hard drive. I'm planning to upgrade to a 120 GB or 160 GB hard disk. Are hard disks from Seagate good enough? I am planning to buy a Seagate since they offer a five- year warranty. Are there any better products? If so, please mention their names and model numbers.
Atin Bansal
I have used a Seagate hard drive for over three years now and haven't had a problems. As far as performance is concerned, our tests conclude that Western Digital (WD) and Hitachi drives are better performers. As for the warranty, almost all vendors offer a five-year warranty. If you want to buy a large capacity hard drive, I'd suggest the Western Digital Caviar series.

High-End Everything
Q. I am interested in building a high-end rig using an AMD Athlon 64 FX-57 processor. However, every time I ask for it, the dealers push the Athlon 64 3500 , which according to them is the same as the FX-57; I guess I am better informed than them. Could you please direct me to the right dealer for this processor? Also, please suggest a good motherboard, high-end graphics card, DDR RAM and other high-end hardware for my system. My budget is Rs 85,000.
Shiv Kumar

Ingram Micro is the distributor for AMD processors in India. You can call their product manager at 022-55960512 regarding the AMD Athlon FX-57 processor. As far as the motherboard is concerned, opt for the Asus A8N SLI Deluxe or Premium board. Buy original Transcend or Kingston memory. However, if you are interested in overclocking, opt for Corsair memory modules. For the graphics card, I would suggest any 7800 GTX chipset card-it is the best that is available for gaming. 

Some Confusion Here
Q. I recently upgraded my PC to a Pentium IV 2.66 GHz, 512 MB of RAM, a 915 chipset-based motherboard and a GeForce 5200 AGP card. I have read in your magazine that PCI cards are better than AGP, but my vendor says that AGP cards are better. He says that the GeForce 5200 has the new AGP 8x slot rather than the older 4x, and that it works better than a PCI card. My budget is Rs 5,000-what card should I get?

I think you mean to say "PCI-Express" cards. Technically speaking, PCIe cards do offer higher bandwidth; however, how much of that extra bandwidth gets utilised in a real-world scenario is debatable. But from a future upgradeability point of view, PCI-Express is the way to go.

Your only option is to opt for an AGP card, and as far as these are concerned, I think you should invest in a card based on the 6200 chipset rather than the older 5200 chipset.

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