Each Wednesday, I suggest some sort of electronic gadget with many of them being a computer component or something useful with a computer. That can include motherboards, processors, memory, hard drives and other parts. Some of you are comfortable buying the parts and building a computer yourself. I’m guessing the majority of you would prefer to buy a computer that is already assembled.

I do get requests to recommend off-the-shelf computers and I rarely do so. First, I don’t research them. More importantly, they change so often that it would be very difficult for me to truly recommend one that exists when you are ready. Today, I’m going to present an alternative that I’ve used to purchase computers for myself.


J&N Computer Services will assemble the parts you select, test the computer and ship it out to you. It may be very late to take advantage, but they do have a “Black Friday/Cyber Monday” deal that is good through December 1, 2016 where you can save a little extra. I’ll admit, their Web site is truly designed for computer geeks. This will require you to do at least a little bit of research to find a starting point.

Most of you will want to purchase a Motherboard Bundle. Even going to that page may be a little frustrating so I’ll narrow it down even more. They currently offer five flavors of Motherboard Bundles and my suggestion would be to go directly to Intel Core Socket 1151 i5/i7 Gen 6. In general, these are the motherboards that support the latest generation of Intel consumer chips.

Now you’ll see bundles based on certain motherboards. So it is pretty important that you research a bit in advance to pick a motherboard. For example, maybe I’ll write about a motherboard in one of my posts. You can use that as your starting point. Click on the Configure System button until the motherboard of your choice and you can select each component.

Is this as friendly as going to a store and coming home with a box? Of course not. But since these computers are all built with off-the-shelf components, it is very easy to replace a component that fails. Wouldn’t it be cheaper to buy the parts and assemble it yourself? Of course it would be cheaper. But factor in your time in purchasing, assembling and testing and you’ll see that JNCS charges a very reasonable cost.

I get nothing from them. I’m just a happy customer and I think this can be a good option for those who want a custom-built computer who don’t want to build it themselves. Back in August I wrote Resizing Disk Partitions for Windows 10 Anniversary Update because we had a computer that was eight years old that I was trying to keep alive a little bit longer. It’s replacement has been ordered from JNCS and will be in place by the end of the year!

Foster D. Coburn III
Foster D. Coburn III

Foster D. Coburn III is author of 13 best-selling books on CorelDRAW and has been a contributor to numerous technology and graphics-related magazines. Foster has taken many projects, including this Web site, from the early design stage through to a finished piece. He has been a featured speaker at many graphics conferences. His first Web site was built in 1995 and he has been working exclusively in WordPress since 2013.

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