Knowledgebase: Tech Tips
New Computer Purchase Information
Posted by on 14 April 2014 12:09 PM

The purpose of this knowledgebase article is to help explain the different computer types available to IOD Staff.

Form Factor:


Dell Optiplex 7010 DT

These machines are permanently installed under your desk and require a separate monitor, keyboard, and mouse to function. These typically cost between $900-1,300.

To get desktop-like functionality out of a laptop, you can purchase a docking station. This is generally recommended if you need to take the computer with you anywhere.

If you would like a desktop, please view the available upgrades on this page:


These are portable and can be used with a docking station.

The models we typically purchase for staff are the Latitude E6440 or the Lattitude E7440 Ultrabook.

E6440 Laptop

E7440 Ultrabook

E6440 Laptop

E7440 Ultrabook

Starting Price: $1,022

Starting Price: $1,235

Base Features:

  • 4.68lbs
  • Webcam/Microphone
  • DVD-RW Drive
  • VGA Port
  • Windows 7 Professional, 64-bit
  • 4GB Memory
  • 320GB Hard Drive
  • 3-year Accidental Damage Warranty

Base Features:

  • 3.6lbs
  • Webcam & microphone
  • Windows 7 Professional, 64-bit
  • 4GB Memory
  • 64GB SSD
  • No DVD Drive
  • No VGA Port

Standard IOD Upgrades:

  • 8GB RAM (+$75)
  • 240GB SSD (+$130)
  • 90W Power Adapter (+$4)
  • Backlit Keyboard (+$36)

Standard IOD Upgrades:

  • Intel Core i5 2.0Ghz Processor (+$12)
  • 8GB RAM (+$73)
  • 240GB SSD (+$135)
  • Backlit Keyboard (+$36)

Total after standard IOD Upgrades: $1,267

Total after standard IOD Upgrades: $1,491

 If there is a specific type of keyboard (e.g. split/ergonomic) or specific type of mouse/monitor/etc... that you prefer, please let me know before I order!

Computer Component Upgrades

Some of the available upgrades are listed below:


The processor is the "brain" of the computer. If you are going to use SPSS, Photoshop, or Video Editing, getting a faster processor is recommended.

Available Upgrades:

E6440 Laptop

E7440 Ultrabook
  • Intel Core i5 @ 2.5GHz (Default, $0)
  • Intel Core i5 @ 2.6GHz (+$39)
  • Intel Core i7 @ 2.9GHz (+$169)
  • Intel Core i5 @ 1.9GHz (Default, $0)
  • Intel Core i5 @ 2.0GHz (+$12)
  • Intel Core i7 @ 2.1GHz (+$140)


A new standard battery generally lasts a 4-6 hours, although this depends on a variety of factors (usage, hard drive type, etc...).

Over time, the effectiveness of the battery gradually degrades. After 3-4 years, your battery may only last 15-60 minutes. You may purchase a new battery for ~$60-120.

E6440 Laptop

E7440 Ultrabook
  • Standard Battery: 4-5 Hours, included
  • Extended Battery: 5-7 Hours, +0.5lbs, +$57, extended footprint
  • Standard Battery: 5-6 Hours, included
  • Extended Battery: 7-9 Hours, +.25lbs, +$36, same footprint

Please note that extended battery for the E6440 laptop extends the laptop's footprint as shown below. The E7440 extended battery is the same size as the standard battery.

Extended Battery
The E6440 Extended Battery has a larger footprint.


Backlit Keyboard:

A backlit keyboard's keys illuminate. This is very handy when working in dark environments.

E6440 Laptop

E7440 Ultrabook
  • Standard Keyboard: included
  • Backlit Keyboard: $36
  • Standard Keyboard: included
  • Backlit Keyboard: $36


Bluetooth is a wireless technology used to connect to headsets, mice, conference phones, and more. Unless you specifically require bluetooth, you generally do not need this upgrade.

E6440 Laptop

E7440 Ultrabook
  • Bluetooth Upgrade: +$15
  • Bluetooth Upgrade: +$15

Hard Drive:
I typically upgrade computers to solid state drives (SSDs). This cost for this is approximately $75 for a 120GB; $120 for 240GB; or $235 for a 480GB.

SSDs make your computer extremely fast. If you are going to do only one upgrade, I'd do this one.

To determine how much space you are currently using (and will require in your new computer), click the Start menu, then click "Computer", then right click on the "C:" drive (sometimes called Local Disk or OS), and select "Properties", it will tell you how much space you are currently using. It's recommended to have at least 10% of your drive free at all times.

I typically upgrade computers to 8GM of memory. I recommend upgrading to 16GB if you are:

  • Using a lot of applications at the same time; OR
  • Doing a lot of video editing; OR
  • Using Photoshop or Illustrator or similar applications; OR
  • Using data analysis tools like SPSS

Additional memory is $75 for 8GB or $234 for 16GB.


If you're doing anything with graphics (such as heavy video editing, etc) I recommend you get the AMD Radeon HD 8690M Graphics card ($94). You will likely require a higher-resolution display for this (see next item).


A higher-resolution display ($37) will let you view more items on the screen at one time.

Docking Station:
If you're consistently working at the same desk, I highly recommend getting a docking station. If you mostly work off-site in different locations, you can skip this. If you work in multiple offices, I recommend getting two docking stations (e.g. One for Durham, one for Concord).

If you have an existing docking station from an older E-Series laptop, this can be used with newer E-Series laptops (including the E6440 and E7440 Ultrabook). If you have a docking station from a Lenovo or some other brand computer, this cannot be used with Dell laptops, and you will need to order a new one. Feel free to ask if you are unsure.

If you purchase a docking station, you will incur the following expenses:

  • 2-Monitor Docking Station ($122) OR 3-Monitor Docking Station ($158)
  • 22" LED Monitor ($140 each)
  • E-Flat Panel Stand (Optional - $74)
  • Keyboard & Mouse ($50) - I typically purchase the LogiTech MK520 Model. If you prefer a split/ergonomic keyboard, please let me know ahead of time!


The E-Flat Panel stand (below). The computer sites in the dock below your monitor, closed.

E-Flat Panel Stand


Additional Mouse:

If you travel a lot, I recommend purchasing an additional mouse ($25) to keep in your bag at all times. This eliminates the need to constantly bring your desktop mouse with you.

Carrying Case:

The UNH Computer Store, located in the MUB, has several carrying bags & backpacks to choose from. I recommend going there to see what you like, but can just order you want if you don't care which model. Prices and models are listed on page 3 of this PDF:


Firefox, Chrome, Anti-virus, Java, Flash, etc... all come pre-installed on the Machine.

I typically install Office 2010 ($67) on the machines.

Additional software available is:

  • SPSS (free)
  • Adobe Acrobat ($60)
  • Adobe Creative Suite (Contact for pricing)
  • Anything else you need installed


Tags: New computer, new computer purchase,

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