As a computer guy, like most, I like to build my own computers. Why? Because you can get 2x the power and performance for the same price as a pre-built computer. I usually get my computer parts from www.newegg.ca or www.tigerdirect.ca and the odd time www.ncix.com.
I had always wondered about these “pre-built” computer sites and if they were really worth it. From my experience (I shouldn’t say my experience since I’ve never bought a pre-built), when my sister ordered a pre-built computer from www.dell.ca a few years ago, the experience to her (and ultimately me since I am the computer guru in the family) was sub par. Also, my father used to get Gateway computers from retail shops, and it always seemed like time after time, something would break sooner than it should. Maybe my family just has bad luck? All I know is I seem to have to buy my computer parts not because of them breaking, but because I either want to upgrade to the newest, coolest technology, or, the part is simply to old to function and do what I want it to do.
So, I needed a computer. Well, I needed new parts for my computer. The motherboard fried, I ripped out the connector by accident on the hard drive while trying to look at the mobo, the DVD player/burner was from the 1990’s and was a 2x write, and of course, CPU and RAM since the motherboard was old. Oh and a new case since mine was from when I was a kid and tried to “trick” it out because I wanted to be cool, but now it just looks…abused.
So as I was looking into buying the parts, from the sites mentioned above, even looking at www.amazon.ca and other sites in which I don’t consider “computer sites” for parts, I noticed and thought to myself “Is it just me, or does it seem that I can get a pre-built computer with the same or better items and NO hassle of building it, for just a few more bucks?” I looked around at a few sites but I have always wondered about www.cyberpowerpc.com. I’ve heard about them for years. I had always remembered seeing their ads in PC Mag and Maximum PC and always hated that they never shipped to Canada. But wait, they ship to Canada now!
So I price out a computer to compare to what specs I was going to buy the parts for. It was only like two hundred or something dollars more for everything. It wasn’t top of the line, it was just an upgrade. (I’m somewhat of a cheapo, and I hate spending money) but my wife said to upgrade now so we don’t have to do it again and again (like I’ve been doing with my parts) So I pretty much went all out and decided on cyberpowerpc.com. So, there’s the back story, now to ordering my new Cyberpowerpc.com computer!
So my first impression of cyberpowerpc.com’s website is that there is A LOT going on. Almost information and sensory overload. Random colors, big explosions, mouseover links everywhere, just…a lot. Trying to find what computer I wanted was a bit obscure also. If you click on each product line, but pick the EXACT same configuration for all of them, they will ALL be different prices. How does that make sense?
After some googling, and going to cyberpowerpc.com’s forums and seeing that there are a million threads on “how is this spec” and “will this run <insert game>?” There seems to be some very smart people on those forums who will configure and show you the best price. And by doing this, you see what the most cost effective product line is at that time. For me, it was the Gamer Xtreme 2000. Their part selection process is like any other computer building site that lets you select stuff as you go. A nice feature I saw was the suggested power supply calculator and the FPS gauge on the left hand side. Quite useful.
So after a days worth of adding and subtracting options and picking what I wanted, I finally decided to order on March 30/2014 (a Sunday). In the end, it ended up costing me $1,640.65 which included $95 shipping to Canada & $100 rush next business day shipping, but it said I had 2 rebates when selecting my options for $60 total or something like that. Ok, so when I am selecting my options, you can click the MIR button and get your mail in rebate. But once you ordered, where do you go? They don’t send you the link when you order, they don’t email them to you either. If you forget to open your mail in rebate BEFORE you order, you will have to search through their rebate page and know exactly what you got. I found this a little frustrating. Then, after printing out my rebates, I find out that some rebates are only available to US customers. I was a little ticked off about that and in my feedback to them, I put that in the comments.
Finally, before you buy, google cyberpowerpc.com coupon codes. I ended up finding a 5% off my entire order which saved me ~$80 which pretty much pays for the shipping.
Overall score of website and online ordering: 3.5/5
Post Ordering / Customer Service
Prepare for email spam. From the time I ordered to the time the item was shipped, I ended up getting 7 emails (8 if you count the final customer survey email after you get your computer). They email you every step of the way. To me, it was a little much. All I need is my invoice, and my shipping tracking number, and I’m good. But, if you like to know every step, it’s ok I guess. I won’t fault them for letting the customer know what is going on. You have a specific person who emails you the entire way (or at least, they make it seem that way) so if you have a problem, it goes to “them” directly. I noticed in one of the emails that it said It would take 8-15 days to process and I flipped. I paid $100 extra to get next day processing. So I called them up. They were nice and they said they get this all the time. It’s just the default email that goes out and that my order will be processed the way I selected.Whew….
I get an email saying my item has gone to the warehouse the next day (Monday 31st), and then the item shipped out via UPS on Tuesday (April 1st). I get my package April 7th. One thing they do not tell you when you order is border / brokerage fees. This added $300 to my bill in which I had to pay UPS for. Wasn’t to please about that but it was my own fault for not looking into it.
It’s all pre-built & pre-installed. Just need to take out the protective packaging from inside the computer, plug it in, and set up my profile. I look at the instructions that they taped over the case. It says “your windows 7 key is on the side of your case”
wait…what? I ordered Windows 8….and there’s no sticker? (writing this just reminded me that I never called them about it. But I have a backup image so I’m hoping its on there). So if you buy from them, I would check to see if its there. I also put this into my customer survey.
Also included in the shipping box was the motherboard box, all the instruction manuals for all the parts installed, extra cables, and the free keyboard, mouse and headset. The free keyboard and mouse are actually not that bad. The headset I have not tried.
Overall score for Post Ordering / Customer Service: 3.5/5
The computer I got is simply fast and amazing. It boots in like 10 seconds. Even with the amount of start up crap I have installed. This is partly Windows 8 and partly system specs. I have no complaints over the system. Hopefully it stays this way. Here are a couple of pictures of my rig.
And the spec list:
CASE: Apevia X-Trooper Junior Mid-Tower Gaming Case Black/blkred & Side Panel Window (Black Color with Red LED Light)
CD: 24X Double Layer Dual Format DVD+-R/+-RW + CD-R/RW Drive (BLACK COLOR)
CPU: Intel(R) Core™ i5-4670K 3.40 GHz 6MB Intel Smart Cache LGA1150 (All Venom OC Certified)
CS FAN: Maximum 120MM Case Cooling Fans
FAN: Asetek 510LC 120mm Liquid Cooling CPU Cooler – Enhance Cooling Performance (Dual Standard 120MM Fans (Push-Pull)
HDD: 128GB ADATA SP900 SATA-III 6.0Gb/s – 550 MB/s Read & 520 MB/s Write
HEADSET: Rocksoul Stereo Headphone with MIC
KEYBOARD: AZZA Delta Gaming Keyboard w/ Anti-Ghosting & red backlight
MEMORY: 8GB (4GBx2) DDR3/1866MHz Dual Channel Memory (Corsair Vengeance)
MOTHERBOARD: GIGABYTE Z87X-HD3 ATX w/ On/Off Charge 2, Realtek GbLAN, 2 PCIe x16 (1 Gen3, 1 Gen2), 3 PCIe x1, 2 PCI
MOUSE: AZZA Alpha 1600 DPI Gaming Mouse
NETWORK: Onboard Gigabit LAN Network
OS: Microsoft(R) Windows 8.1 (64-bit Edition)
POWERSUPPLY: 750 Watts – Corsair CX750 750W 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply
SERVICE: STANDARD WARRANTY: 3-YEAR [3 Year Labor, 1 Year Parts] LIMITED WARRANTY PLUS LIFE-TIME TECHNICAL SUPPORT
SOUND: HIGH DEFINITION ON-BOARD 7.1 AUDIO
VIDEO: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 3GB GDDR5 16X PCIe 3.0 Video Card (EVGA Superclocked)
Overall score for computer: 5/5
Overall score for computer: 12/15
And there you have it. Would I recommend cyberpowerpc.com to anyone? Yes. I have heard some horror stories but what company doesn’t have angry customers. There is no such thing as 100% happy customers. Unless you have only had 1 customer, and they liked you. Hopefully if you decide to get a computer through them, you have the same or better experience as I did.
If you have ordered through them before, post your experience in the comments below!