I did notice it had integrated graphics, and with 8 gigs i thought that if the GPU took extra ram from the processor that would be fine with how much extra it has. It actually limits the GPU instead of letting it borrow more?
Well, the on-chip graphics will only allocate up to 1gb to itself (plenty for what it can do). The problem here isnt the amount of ram, its the speed and bus width. The average vid card these days has a 256-bit bus (256 1s and 0s per 'tick' of the clock) usualy running at 1000mhz or faster. Even with dual channel, due to the low speed of the ram, the best you can get is a 128-bit bus at 1333 mhz, and it has to share that with the CPU. The primary issue here is it can't get information to the CPU/GPU fast enough.
I liked this model over some others because it had a better GPU even tho it was integrated.
Yes, at the price point it is very hard to beat an A8. It outshines any intel integrated and almost every nvidia/ati dedicated card you can find in the sub-$600 computer range. Even with the slower ram.
Also from your replies it seems your saying the 3800 is not as good as the 3850. I looked when i was doing my research, and the 3800 had a better or similar GPU and it had Turbocore where as the 3500 didn't. What am i missing?
The A8-3800 runs at a stock clock of 2.4ghz, and can turbo up to 2.7ghz. The A8-3850 runs at a stock clock of 2.9ghz. It doesnt matter that the A8-3800 has turbocore, its still slower. (this logic only applies to CPUs in the same family. i.e. A8-* or i3 2*** and so on.)
As a side note, the A8-3500 is a laptop cpu (and does have turbocore).
Lastly, what is OEM again and why is it important?
OEM: Original Equipment Manufacturer
Dell, HP, Asus, Lenovo, Gateway and others like them are all OEM. In this context, the A8-3800 is an OEM CPU, meaning it is sold only to OEMs like Asus or Dell. The CPU is not available to be bought on its own. Typically, OEM cpus are slower then the consumer available versions.
An OEM is out to make a profit; they will not hesitate to put in cheaper parts (within reason) to bring down the cost. Such as putting in 4 2gb sticks of 1333 instead of the more logical 2 4gb sticks of 1600. Or a 5400rpm harddrive instead of 7200rpm.
OEMs have a positive side, They offer warrantys, support, drivers available on their site, and the fact you don't have to build it yourself. On the other hand you don't get the best quality of hardware, your upgrade paths are limited, and if you modify it there is a chance it breaks your warranty.
Most tech savvy people prefer to build their own computers. It is not hard to match an OEMs price with better hardware inside, and people will help pick out parts if you ask. But you lose the warranty (from the OEM, the parts still have warrantys) and all the services an OEM would provide.