Custom PC: 7 Reasons to Buy

Custom PC: 7 Reasons to Buy So, you need to buy a new computer or custom PC. Maybe the dinosaur you had has seen better days or you’d finally like to get those upgrades you’ve been holding out on. Your next move: Buy the best deal you can get from your neighborhood big-box retailer, right? Wrong! Why navigate the aisles, long lines and lame sales guys if you don’t have to. Your other option is working with a skilled technician (like me!) who can build you a computer with quality components and designed for how you will actually be using your computer. Whether you work with Blue Diamond PC or not, here’s why a custom-built computer is the best option. 1. Personalization. Your custom PC can be built to support your computing needs. Are you a gamer and need a multi-video card set up (SLI)? Are you a graphic designer and need a higher quality processor and multi-core/multi-thread capability? There are really no limits the possibilities for your unique system. 2. Solid-State Hard Drives (SSD). Most store-bought computers come standard with hard disk drives, which offer little protection for the wear and tear we put on our devices. (I wrote about this topic recently). Instead, all Blue Diamond PC custom-built computers use solid-state hard drives that offer a much faster start-up time, faster time to access data and resistance to shock and vibration. 3. Software You’ll Actually Need. The PC you buy from retail electronics stores come with only the operating system installed. There may be trial-versions of software already loaded (called bloatware), but most of it is just wasted space. You’ll have to buy and install the Microsoft Office Suite for example on your own or have someone else install it. Other software to consider includes accounting, communication and design programs. Again, a custom-PC is built with your specific needs in mind will include the software you need already loaded. 4. Data Transfer. Included in the price of a custom built computer is data transfer from your old computer, including documents, photos, music, and videos. I can also install your favorite web browser. 5. Longer Lasting Computer. If you buy a computer for a specific need – software for example, you might buy the minimum hardware for that software. Yet, the new software that comes out within the next year or two may have more requirements and not work on that particular PC. So, it’s beneficial to buy a custom pc that will last several years – a computer that has more than the minimum required components. 6. Support a Local Business. Does Best Buy or Wal-Mart really need more of your money? Joking aside – when you support a local small business you support the local economy and skilled professionals. Further, you can actually work with the person who assembled your computer with full services and on-call questions. In fact, many of the sales people who work at these retail chains are poorly equipped and unknowledgeable about the PCs they are selling. 7. Quality Components. Manufacturers like HP and Dell put together standard parts and sell “pre-made” computers. Although fast enough for typical use and competitively priced, these systems use second-rate hardware with limited upgradability. Instead, I constantly keep up-to-date reviewing quality parts to find the best parts to assemble the highest grade custom PC. For more information about ordering a custom PC built by Blue Diamond PC, contact me at...

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Making the Case for Solid-State Hard Drives SSD

Making the Case for Solid-State Hard Drives (SSD) Bet you thought all hard drives were the same, right? Wrong!  A hard drive with mechanics (HDD) vs. a solid-state drive (SDD) with NAND flash chips. (source: Intel) This may have happened to you in the past or to someone you know. In fact, it’s from one of my long-time clients, who owns a small marketing agency. She was traveling back to Dallas from a business trip in another state. The airport was really packed and hectic that day. As she was being rushed through the TSA lines and hurrying to the gate, her laptop slipped out of the case and dropped on the hard tile floor. I sympathized, because that’s life and these things happen. However, we both shared a moment of panic when we talked later that day. The drop had done damage to components on her laptop’s hard drive resulting in total data loss. Sound pretty extreme? In fact, most PCs and laptops use what’s called hard disk drives or HDDs and offer little protection for the wear and tear we put on our devices. These hard drives are built with disks called platters that spin at a high RPM. (You may have noticed a spinning noise on your computer before). Data is stored on a magnetic coating on the platter. A read/write ‘head’ on an arm moves back and forth while the platters spin to pick up the magnetic data. If this head gets damaged, like it did for my client, the hard drive will no longer work and you’re likely to lose all of your saved data. Up until recently, PC users have had very little choice in what hard drive or primary storage they got with their laptop, netbook or desktop computer. Fortunately, those options are more readily available and less costly. Let’s take a look at another option for storage – a solid-state drive or SSD, which, as the name implies, is a hard drive with no moving mechanical components. It does essentially the same thing as an HDD (booting your system, saving your data while the system is off, etc.), yet data is stored on memory chips rather than moving disks. Compared with the HDD variety, SSDs are typically less susceptible to physical shock, are much quieter, and have lower access time because they don’t need to seek to locate stored data. Most of the advantages of SSDs over traditional hard drives are due to their ability to access data completely electronically instead of electromagnetically, resulting in superior transfer speeds and mechanical ruggedness. Today most high-end computers and ultrabooks come standard with an Solid-State hard drive (SSD). As of 2012, the price of Solid-States has begun to decline dramatically making them a worthy option for everyday computer users – including small businesses and personal/at-home users. Other advantages of solid-state hard drives include the following: 1.       Much faster start-up time 2.       Faster time to access data 3.       Faster boot and application launch times 4.       Solid-States have no moving parts and therefore are basically silent 5.       Don’t require special cooling and can tolerate higher temperatures 6.       Resistant to shock and vibration (If you travel a lot with your computer or use it out in the field, this is of major importance to you). For these reasons, Blue Diamond PC installs Solid-state hard drives on all of its custom built computers. If you already have a computer, there is no other system upgrade that will give you the performance boost of an SSD. You’ll quickly notice a dramatic boost in performance and boot-up and application load...

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