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  • ckryan - Friday, October 21, 2011 - link

    I don't think the price is terrible for what you get, but it's curious that the system was sent with this configuration. Quiet air cooling and a little solid state storage make a big difference for sound and performance, so it's surprising that they didn't choose a modest SSD and a "green" HD, dropped the Asetek, and chose a more appropriate case. The Cooler Master might be a decent case, but I think it looks more than just a little cheap. Reply
  • xQuartzx - Friday, November 11, 2011 - link

    I'm personally not a big fan of Ibuypower. I bought my first gaming computer from them, and honestly it wasn't a great experience. I don't like how they build their computer, how they treat their customers, and just generally how they run their business., I mean if something is on back order you have to call to find out, they don't alert you, notify you, nothing. They just let you sit and guess. That's why I'm using Ironside Computers now to build my gaming computers. They give me a much more hassle-free service. I'm notified on everything that happens with my computer, and their build quality is superb. It was a much better experience IMHO. Reply
  • s44 - Friday, October 21, 2011 - link

    I realize that [H] shut their program down because it was too logistically difficult (working around the need to get a review unit through standard channels -- in order to stay anonymous -- must be a nightmare), but something like their service testing program where they simulated various things that could go wrong and the vendor's ability to deal with it through support channels seems irreplaceable, particularly in this part of the market.

    iBP, for example, is known for terrible customer service, and even though you rightly ding them for warranty spec, config, and presentation, it's still quite a leap of faith to say that had they gotten these things right, it would be worth it. How do you know what their warranty is really worth, even for what it covers? Are you really going to ask enterprise buyers to make a leap of faith on a long-term purchase just on a company's ability to nail the front-end stuff?
  • VikingDude151 - Friday, October 21, 2011 - link

    Please validate vast statements such as this: "a boutique like iBuyPower for their desktop and enjoying the generally superior build and component quality along with better customer service." Customization and build quality are most likely pluses, but I don't think customer service is.

    My experience with AVADirect, a similar boutique is that their customer service is horrible. With a big box store or large PC supplier I would have never experienced a DOA problem where it took nearly 1 month for AVADirect to resolve the issue where they failed to screw in the video card before shipment. A DOA problem like this would never be a problem with a large PC supplier or big box store.
  • Money Loo - Friday, October 21, 2011 - link

    I have to completely agree with this comment. Except my own experience is with iBuypower personally. Both me and my brother purchased computers from them around the same time about a year ago. And both of our computers had power supplies fail on us. This wouldn't have been so bad if it wasn't for their atrocious customer support. First of all, they only have like three people working customer support. Second, they are amazingly rude. Both me and my brother have literally had some foreigner LAUGH at us over the phone, telling us they weren't going to fix anything, and if we didn't like it, we should come to california and take it up with them personally. Then they would hang up, and continue to do this when you called back! It was AMAZINGLY INFURIATING. Needless to say we both dropped them and went with another company in the future. Maingear has been nothing but exceptional. My first computer with them had a faulty PSU, admittedly my fault because I added more components to it after selecting a borderline psu to power my dual gtx580s. I even told the guy on the phone this and he said no worries, and sent out a brand new psu at no cost to me within two days. Haven't had any problems since. Reply
  • Dustin Sklavos - Saturday, October 22, 2011 - link

    The general idea behind going with a boutique is that theoretically they SHOULD provide better, more personalized customer service. Unfortunately part of the problem as a reviewer is that I'm always going to see the best side of any company's PR.

    When you guys post these horror stories, though, it winds up doing everybody a service. This is a public space where other potential customers are going to read these remarks, which incentivizes the company itself to get more hands on and keep their **** honest. Every so often when we see something like this, we'll ping the company themselves and let them know something's up.

    As far as large PC suppliers and big boxes go, you can get burned royally. My best friend's cousin bought a laptop from Best Buy that had problems with the screen blanking out randomly within a week of the purchase. He took it back to the Best Buy and they said "tough titties, you didn't buy our warranty so we can't help you." (By the way, I used to work in Geek Squad and I can vouch, albeit anecdotally, for their utter lack of reliability.)
  • s44 - Sunday, October 23, 2011 - link

    Dustin, you do know about this great doomed project five+ years ago, right?
  • jalexoid - Friday, October 21, 2011 - link

    Why don't you use any OpenGL games for workstation GPU testing? It's kind of pointless to test an OpenGL optimised GPU with DX games.
    I'm pretty sure, that there are games that are OpenGL and you could run them as a part of your test...
  • JarredWalton - Friday, October 21, 2011 - link

    Quadro cards are optimized for professional OpenGL use, not for OpenGL games. Besides which, the only OpenGL games are either old, not demanding, or not a good benchmark (see the Rage article I wrote recently). Reply
  • cactusdog - Friday, October 21, 2011 - link

    Thanks for the review Dustin. Reply
  • greylica - Friday, October 21, 2011 - link

    The Ge forces uses the same cores of the Quadros, but are are hardware and software hacked by Nvidia to separate ''content consumers'' from ''content producers''. They separate them as having money to work or not having money to work. Same thing from ATI and their FireGL Cards. You can find searching in the internet that a GTX 285 is faster than a GTX 580 in OpenGL applications. For example: some folks are so irritated with this that made a hack to GL read Pixels. When GTX 580 launched, I tought ''OOOOHHH'' Awewsome specs ! Then I said ''OOOOOHHHH'' slower than GTX 285 ???

    Bought 2 used GTX 285 and I'm very happy using my Linux Workstation with Blender...

    Quadros with the same power as a GTX 285 in OpenGL are 4X more expensive, why Nvidia ? 2X the price isn't enough ???
    Nvidia said that they won't fix their drivers for GTX 580, it's clear that they want to separate consumers from producers, but GTX 580 isn't the best card to compare with Quadros. The problem started with GTX 480...
  • jamyryals - Friday, October 21, 2011 - link

    Obviously the enterprise cards have different optimizations than the consumer brethren. The extra costs for enterprise GPU cards are for driver validation testing/support. In consumer cards you have many more people sharing those costs.

    Simple as that. It's not gouging, it's what the have to charge to make a profit in that business.

    1 day of avoided downtime will pay for the extra cost. If something goes wrong you can get someone on the phone and get immediate service. Enterprise support is vastly underrated by many people, but it's extremely important to minimize risks to a delivery schedule.
  • Stuka87 - Friday, October 21, 2011 - link

    I am going to assume that you don't work in the industry that makes use of professional grade cards such as the Quadro and FireGL.

    There are hardware differences, but the biggest difference is i the drivers. The drivers go through a great deal of testing, and get certified to work properly with the software that they are typically used with (Such as AudoCAD, SolidWorks, etc). The drivers are also not always in a constant state of flux. Updates come less often, so they are far more stable.

    I have no problems with the pro cards costing far more when it means there wont be compatibility or crashing issues. You using GTX cards for Blender is fine. But if you are running a business you can't afford to take chances like that. Things need to work, and they need to work the same way day in and day out.
  • greylica - Friday, October 21, 2011 - link

    Ok, I Work everyday with different equipments and I can tell that there is not a single problem in years using the combination Blender + Linux + Good OpenGL Cards. Believe it or not, I have a flickering problem With a Quadro FX3450 using Nvidia Quadro drivers that does not appear in GTX 285 using Subsurf Level 5 with a big displacement map.

    *''1 day of avoided downtime will pay for the extra cost.''

    Agree, but some problems appear even with Quadros, and the only perception I have in years is that decent cards like 2XX series and OpenGL drivers are stable enough but performance are downgraded artificially in drivers in a manner that separates creators from consumers. After 4XX series, OpenGL performance are thrown in an abysm. Thanks to good (free software) coders, those problem doesn't affect conformant renderers running in CPUs or Multiple Small cores (OpenCL), and the only limitation we have for now is the fact that a big map can sometimes suffer from laggies. Thanks again to good (free software) coders, we can decimate visualization and turn Subsurf on for the Render time only. And Thanks again to good coders, we are now aware of the problems that are present in 4XX and 5XX cards, or others from now and up that are OpenGL performance hacked.

  • lockheart - Friday, October 21, 2011 - link

    Does IBP give a retail version of Windows 7 or do they supply an OEM DVD type recovery disk like other major manufacturers do? A lot of times we'd like to use Microsoft tools like ImageX and Windows AIK to make images of our operating systems and with OEM DVDs this is not possible due to the way the license keys work. Reply
  • haxor911 - Friday, October 21, 2011 - link

    They should have put quieter drives; but I think this is being marketed as a workstation not a desktop. The Dell Precisions we have here come with 15k RPM SAS drives and they sound like they are grinding rocks when working with large files. Reply
  • wyrmslair - Friday, October 21, 2011 - link

    Yes, very few people overclock a Xeon workstation but many, many workstation users push their CPU's to the limit over long periods with rendering or other CPU intensive tasks. Trust me when I say that the advantages of a LC over AC system will show for many workstation users. How do I know this? I used to do these kinds of configurations for a boutique shop that serviced that industry and I was getting it straight from the horse's mouths. Most engineers and graphic artists (this was back when video rendering actually needed horsepower) where very aware of how well cooled or ventilated their systems were and had horror stories of overheating at some point. From what I still hear, things have not changed much in that respect in the WS market.

    Other than that, good job on showing how the boutiques can compete and do decent job of it even with their inherent weaknesses.
  • IdBuRnS - Monday, October 24, 2011 - link

    "but oftentimes the end user will be better off going to a boutique like iBuyPower for their desktop and enjoying the generally superior build and component quality along with better customer service."

    ibuypower's customer service is freaking horrendous.

    They deliver computers that have disconnected internal components, BSOD repeatedly upon first boot and when they promise to replace the computer after a multiple issues they just send the exact same computer back to you (on your dime) without any of the issues resolved and claim they never said they would replace the system in the first place.

    They suck and you guys keep reviewing their systems and giving them good scores.
  • Adelwich - Wednesday, October 26, 2011 - link

    After extensively reviewing the components, I pulled the trigger on an ibuypower system that arrives tomorow. This thread, combined with similar threads elsewhere, gives me the fear and makes me wonder if i blew it.Am I doomed? Reply
  • Drittz121 - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    Just do yourself a favor. STAY AWAY from this company. Yes they look good. But when it breaks and it WILL. All they do is give you the run around. They have had my system for over 2 months trying to fix the garbage they sell. Worse company out there for support. DONT BUY Reply
  • Drittz121 - Friday, February 28, 2014 - link

    Just do yourself a favor. STAY AWAY from this company. Yes they look good. But when it breaks and it WILL. All they do is give you the run around. They have had my system for over 2 months trying to fix the garbage they sell. Worse company out there for support. DONT BUY Reply

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