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what kind of computer for trading?

  1. I'm setting up a part time short term trading business in August. What kind of computer hardware do I need speed, ram, etc? This will be only for researching and tradingI'm considering a new hp computer. Do I need more than a dual monitor? What about 3 monitors? What monitors are good?

  2. Tell more about what kind of trading youre planning to do
  3. The kind of trading I'm doing is swing 3-5 day or hold stocks for a few weeks.

    I'll be doing charting, research, using level quote II screens and software. I won't be day trading.

    When I start out it will be part time, then plan full time within a year.

    I see all of these elaborate setups, but am not sure if that is what I need. I'm a newbie so I am not sure what I need. This computer will only be used for business(trading research.

    I would like to know what brand of computer is good?

    What brand of monitor?

    I've read through the threads and am confused

    I see some people have a comuter for charting, one for trading, and one for research.

  4. Brand of monitor and computer is the least of your worries.
    However, since you insist anything around $1000 will do nicely. Dell, HP, and everything in between. Trust me it is not the machine that will make you money in the end. Concentrate on your studies.
  5. You wont need multiple monitors for that kind of trading, but I choose to because I had many programs running and needed the extra space (your platform will take up the entire screen most likely). If you choose dual monitors (I like samsung, but for any wide screen, high rez monitor, expect to pay up 500+), you're going to also need a high end graphics card..and those dont come in any old computer ( G-force cards are nice).

    I have explorer open, two chat rooms, i-tunes, poker games, 2 platform (stocks/ FX), and who knows what else...

    trying to fit all that crap on one screen and having to constantly minimizing windows is a pain in the ass. If this sounds like you too, you might wanna invest in a high-end graphics card (or just buy an expensive computer) and have someone install the card. I dont know, but you may also need/ want a memory upgrade..so get another memory module (512mb )

    Also make sure you get MS excel 07...cost like 300.00, but i wish i had it.
  6. why MS 07 excel versus 03 version
  7. get the home and student version of office 2007 for $149 at your local university bookstore/computer store.
  8. As others have already noted - the computer is the least of your worries. If you're committed to moving forward w/ this endeavor, get the cheapest thing you can afford and only consider expanding when:

    - you figure out what you need
    - you earn the money for the new setup w/ your profits
  9. Get a Dell with Core 2 Duo processor and lots of RAM 1-2GB. This setup should be good for the next 2-3 years minimum. The OS you want now is still XP. For monitor, just get whatever floats your boat at the shop.
  10. I appreciate the feedback so far. What I have is a 1.4 ghtz 512mb ram 15 in flat screen monitor, 128mb graphics Nivida. It is a computer a few years old.

    I feel my question is not being answered. What does a newbie need to get started. Whay do typical trading offices look like from basic. I basically would like to use as much as I have right now and grow into a full blown trading system with multi monitors.
  11. Go with what this guy said...with the advice of the post below it. You can get good refurbished comps from BB/CC for well under a grand (especially if it's on sale), which will be more than powerful enough. You can probably get by with just one monitor but if you want another go for a cheap 128 meg DH vid card which will allow you to run two. Unless you're some nerd playing quake for money on the internet, you don't need a top of the line video card for trading.
  12. If you want to make it simple, then just walk into bestbuy, buy a cheap dell or whatever fits your budget..and there. Most computers come with enough memory etc.. It doesnt get much simpler than that.
  13. These two questions are completely unrelated.

    The reason your question isn't being answered (in a fashion a newbie can comprehend), is that the answer depends of what kind of a trader you turn into.

    For example, if you watch for setups in multiple markets real-time, you will want more screen real estate; if you have multiple programs all running at the same time, (execution program, charting program, trading chat-room, etc) you will need more power; depending on your feelings about emergencies such as your electricity &/or telephone &/or internet connection &/or broker contact failing you may need more redundancy, and so on and so forth.

    On the other hand, if you're going to research stocks in the evenings and submit orders when the market is closed, you can use the computer down at the library. :)

    Also, what you think (at this moment) you will be doing and trading and using, will probably be transformed and evolve as you experience the journey to becoming a trader.

    As others have stated above, a newbie should spend little or nothing until he can spend it out of trading profits. One cannot emphasize enough the need to keep costs low until if and when trading is profitable (it WILL take longer than you expect).

    Start with what you have, it's fine. Upgrade as you find that you need more, and can afford more. Don't forget that, as with all electronics, better gets cheaper over time. If you MUST buy a computer now, just get something decent and current, you will still be upgrading it as you find you need more.
  14. Just a FWIW, I don't daytrade but I setup dual LCDs a few years ago. Highly recommended.

    Sure, you probably don't *need* them, but I can't imagine only having one now. Makes so many things easier. And with my poor old brain, having things open and readily available really helps.

    Get a couple good 20" LCDs. I bet you will like it!

    Good luck to all. :cool:
  15. http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicat...ffiliateID=4wACJ5K_hyA-ONuPhrKc9lR1JlHPQYNKeA

    19", DVI all for 99$

    agree with spinner. i just found old Athlon XP1500 in trash few days ago, bought 1GB faster memory, add matrox G450 dual card, that was free after rebate and machine is making money already :)
    the difference-i know exactly what i need. don't need big hard drive(50G is fine),lot of memory,because i'm running at least 2 IB TWS's and that's about it.
    no need for fancy video card either(no gaming,no 3D stuff)
  16. For reliability and simplicity, I'd go for a Mac if I were you. Most of the major trading platforms are Java based so they work just as well on an Mac.

    These days they all can run windows too, either as a dual boot system or within a window on the desktop, so compatibility isn't an issue.

    The advantage of a mac is that they don't suffer from viruses or spyware, and are generally far more reliable.Also, they don't need the regular maintainance the PCs do, (defragging, virus checking, fixing driver issues etc). Once you take the maintainance into account, as well as the longer useful life, they actually work out cheaper too.

    Probably the best trading configuration would be a 15 or 17 inch Macbook Pro, with a separate monitor (ideally a 30 inch one), for when it's in the office. that'll give you all the screen space you need, while remaining compact and portable. (so you can travel while trading).

  17. love that dreamy blue keyboard. just tell me there is a built in television tuner and that the cassette may double as a phone answering machine and i gotta have it.
  18. An Apple store just opened up in our city...they have a computer

    that has 4 CPU's!!...thats over 10ghz of processing power...

    however youll spend over 4 grand.
  19. lol.. actually for $699 more they do a dual quad core 3.0 GHz one too.. by the same math that works out at 8 processors and 24 GHz!

    I can confirm though that even the most basic, single dual-core processor, coupled with 2gig of ram, is more than capable of running two full instances of java virtual machine, running two IB accounts, with live charts and data, plus mail, browser, AND streaming radio, without any noticable drop in system response, performance, or stability..

    So even the most basic Mac, with a memory upgrade, would suffice.
  20. I knew it wouldn't be long before the Mac crowd jumped into the thread. Macs are overpriced Mickey Mouse machines built for computer illiterate graphic designers and advertising executives. The only benefit seems to be that so few people own them that no one bothers writing viruses for them. In reality any new PC you buy will be powerful enough for your needs. The most cost-effective option would be to build your own PC (much easier than it sounds) and you wouldn't have to spend much more to build a cutting edge system that will run any piece of software as fast as lightning and will last for years.
  21. wow.. a crowd of er... one!

    How dare I post on a "windows only" message board!

    So even though being the first hacker ever to crack OSX and write a working, self replicating virus for a Mac would be such a huge accolade... nobody's bothering right?.. er OK.. LOL

    you don't make a living in windows IT support do you by any chance?

    Sure, you could build a cheaper computer, but personally I'd prefer 'reliable' and 'secure' thanks.
  22. If Apple is so wonderful then how come the business world is not using them?
  23. No I don't work in Windows IT support but I do have a reliable and secure PC that runs all the software I want not just the minority of software that developers can be bothered to port over to the Mac.
  24. Well prior to OSX, Mac's weren't all that great for business. The OS was odd, you couldn't get "under the hood" that easily, it was hard to network them with other computers... so really it's only had 5 years. Corporate inertia is a big factor, but more and more are switching. There's not much point saving a couple of hundred dollars on the hardware, only to have to spend thousands more on support staff, maintainance, development tools, etc..

    It's a similar scenario as the introduction of PCs in the early eighties. to start with it was only small business that took them seriously. Corporate IT departments "knew" that PCs were just toys. Everyone knew that if you wanted to do serious work you needed a mini computer or mainframe. DEC, VAX, NCR etc..

    Times are changing. When the CEO has a mac at home, that just works, he's going start to wonder if his company REALLY needs the many hours of lost productivity while IT fixes yet another dead/virused/registry mangled PC..
  25. You make the mistake of thinking everyone's experience of Windows is as bad of yours which obviously isn't the case but any business that did want to turn away from Windows would be more likely to turn to Linux which dominates the server market anyway and means they wouldn't have to rely on an MP3 player company for all their hardware and software needs.
  26. Good for you. If you know your stuff it's certainly possible to make a PC secure, and reasonably reliable. That question is what do you have to do to achieve that?

    It most likely involves weekly, or even daily virus checking, occasional defragging, ad/spyware cleaning, email scanning, registry cleaning. How long does all that take? 1 hour a week? 2?

    I guess it depends how much you value your time, but at say $30 an hour, that's at LEAST 52weeks x$30x a ruthlessly efficient 1 hour per week = $1560 a year in maintainance.. and that's assuming nothing actually goes wrong!

    .. and god help you if you've made the mistake of installing Vista!.. yikes!

    Mac maintainance consists of hitting "software update" maybe once every few weeks, then waiting 5 mins for the updater to do it's thing. That's it.

    I've used PCs for over 20 years. I didn't switch just because of the pretty box!
  27. I'm never going to buy a mac until they get with the program, and make a mouse that has two click buttons, like ever other mouse on the market.

  28. you make the mistake of thinking you have a handle on my PC experience.

    Hey it's ok. I'm not trying to push macs on you. You obviously happy with your system and that's great, but you know, it's like choosing a car.

    I enjoy my kit car. it's fun, fast, cheap, and good for tinkering with, but if someone was looking for a good quality reliable vehicle and didn't want to spend time under the hood, I'd probably recommend a bmw or toyota.
  29. why not just use your PC mouse? it'll work just fine. right click menus, scrolling, the lot.

    or didn't you know that?
  30. None of the above. I have Windows auto updates on and Kaspersky Internet Security and Diskeeper running in the background. No viruses, no crashes and hardly any maintenance time.
  31. Then you are indeed a rare exception to the rule... and presumably not running Vista, right?
  32. Running Windows XP Professional - a very stable OS. I don't think I'm a rare exception at all, most people have auto updates on and have an antivirus running in the background. User stupidity is the reason why most viruses spread.
  33. User stupidity? or user "non expertise"? be honest now. You mention two third party apps which you use to keep your computer secure, which the average guy in the street has never heard of. That's two more than the mac needs, and two more programs to run in the back ground and slow down system performance.

    Like I say, I've used PC for 20 years. I know how to maintain them. You obviously know how to maintain them, but you know, most people just want to switch the thing on an use it, without worrying about keeping the whole thing running smoothly.
  34. Not recommended. Never use a public computer where your data security may be compromised. You never know what spyware is planted in those PCs by hackers.
  35. ^^^^ very wise advice!!
  36. This is funny. So using a PC will make you a better trader????

    Cuz I do just fine with my mac.

    Of course it isnt the computer... It's my brain. I could do well with a Linux Machine.

    Back in '00 it wasnt my computer that made me a sucky trader.. Again it was my mind...
  37. To me a PC is just a tool for trading. Bad craftsman blames his tools? :D
  38. Just like in my night Job a Crappy Mix Engineer Blames his Mixing Desk..

    Bet line I ever heard... Gimme a Mackie 8 Buss and I'll still mix a Platinum Record....