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What's the secret?

Building a high performance PC is not as simple as putting together the components.  At Wired2Fire we go through a series of steps to ensure you get an outstanding performance PC that works perfectly.

Only the Best Components

The first part of the Wired2Fire process is selection of the best components.  We have various guides explaining how to select the best components for your particular needs and budget.  However, we have done most of the hard work for you. Each and every one of our pre-configured PCs has its components selected to offer the best all round balance of performance and value.  All you need to do is fine tune it by using the customisation pages to achieve your exact needs.  If you are unsure about how to get the best system for you, and therefore best value, then feel free to contact us for advice.

When it comes to selecting components we start by using a range of highly regarded manufacturers, those with a strong reputation and in house proven record for performance, reliability and price. If it doesn’t meet our rigorous standards then it’s out! This ensures we are starting with a good set of building blocks.  Depending on the target price for a system and its main function, be it gaming, flight simulation or all round home use, we select for the best overall performance.

For general gaming, the graphics card is the primary component, but it shouldn’t be paired with a processor that is too weak, otherwise this can cause a bottleneck.  For Flight Sim more than 8GB of memory is a waste, it’s only a 32-bit app, for all round use, CPU and memory become more important.  Suffice to say, our systems have a great balance that you won’t find in many other manufacturers machines.

Built in the Right Way

PCs were designed to be plug together, so it’s not difficult to physically assemble a PC.  However, it is difficult to do it in the best way, to ensure the best performance and reliability.  Wired2Fire have the experience to assemble a PC in a way that ensures optimal performance.

Put the memory in the wrong slots, the storage drive to the wrong port or even the graphics card in the wrong slot and you could end up with a PC not performing as fast as it should.  Simple things, like ensuring your primary hard drive is connected to the fastest port and the memory is placed in the slots that it can operate in dual or quad channel mode ensure you don’t lose out.

Physical placement is important too.  Blocking airflow in the case can result in your PC getting too hot which in turn can cause performance throttling or even worse reliability issues.  All our PCs are built with careful consideration for the optimal air flow.  Fans are placed in the most efficient configuration, components are placed so they do not interfere with airflow.  We also ensure each PC is well cable managed which keeps airflow disruption to an absolute minimum.  This becomes even more important when overclocking the PC.

Optimisation Basics

A PC is a highly complicated bit of kit.  The technology evolves extremely rapidly and it’s hard to know how to optimise the very latest hardware.  That’s why Wired2Fire do this all for you.  A lot of the initial optimisation steps are performed in the motherboard BIOS.  First we update to latest BIOS firmware – this not only provides the latest hardware compatibility, but ensures any bug fixes are applied and performance is as good as it can be.

We then go through a few motherboard dependent settings to get the system zipping along.  Correct memory speeds, optimised boot orders, for fast start up, unnecessary hardware disabled to reduce system load are all considered.  Individually, each of these tuning steps makes a fractional difference.  Combined, all this tuning can result in a PC that can be 5-10% faster, using exactly the same hardware!

Overclocking

We appreciate that overclocking isn’t for everyone.  If you are unsure whether to select it, take a look at our “What is Overclocking” article.  In most cases, if your budget and hardware support it, we’d always suggest you choose the overclocking option as it really does give you something for nothing.  We wouldn’t recommend overclocking for PCs that are mission critical or are likely to be used in a high temperature environment or one with poor stability of mains supply.

With an overclocked CPU you can achieve huge improvements in CPU performance and overall system speed.  What this means is even better value performance!   The overclocking process is not straight forward as some would have you believe.  You may see overclocks claimed or real on forums, but are they 24 hours a day, 7 days a week stable?

Getting the correct settings requires experience, our engineers can usually get a system stable with the first stab.  However, it can take several attempts to ensure the overclock is not only stable, but not using more voltage than it needs too (which would make it run hotter than it needs to which in turn could reduce the PC lifespan).  We’ll never release a PC from quality control unless we are 100% happy with it. In practice, this means it has passed all our stress testing with flying colours.  We realise it’s not in our customers or our own interests to send out a PC that might not be 100% stable, so testing is one of the most important steps of the overclocking process.

The overclock achieved varies from system to system, even identical hardware systems can have quite a variety of stable overclocked speeds.  There are many factors involved so we never guarantee an overclock, but we do guarantee the fastest overclock possible for your particular choice of components which will run perfectly.

Software Tuning

Hardware set up and overclocking are not the only factors that affect PC performance. All our systems are fully installed with Windows and supplied with a full copy of Windows.  We ensure the latest chipset and graphics drivers are installed which can result in significant improvements in performance. 

We make a few small tweaks here and there to ensure you are getting the very best set up.  We don’t install any bloat-ware, so you know your computer is going to be as fast as it can be. 

Security patches for Windows are applied before you get your PC, so you can also be sure it is running as securely as possible and you don’t have the inconvenience of waiting hours to download the latest patches.

Testing

At Wired2Fire, we consider the testing to be the most important factor in the production of a PC.  Testing is extremely important because we know that our customers want to have confidence that their PC will perform flawlessly.  Having the fastest PC is important, but useless if you can’t rely on it!

Even brand new components have a small chance that they could have some kind of defect that could result in premature failure.  That’s why a thoroughly tested PC is one you can be confident will give you years of service.  Thorough testing involves maximising the workload using the latest software to check each function of each component is working correctly.  By placing stress on the system, any inherent defects are more likely to be spotted before you even get the PC.  We know that we can’t be 100% certain your PC won’t develop a fault, but we do know that we have done everything possible to reduce the chances of this happening.

With overclocking the testing phase becomes even more important.  Without placing the PC under high stress conditions, you cannot be certain the PC will work under normal operating conditions.  Load tests check for heat stress and by running all components at once we make sure that power delivery is not an issue either.  The net result is the most stable PC you can get!

After Care

At Wired2Fire, after we’ve sent each PC off to its new home, in the nicest possible way, we really don’t want to hear from our customers until they come to buy their next PC.  In most cases, that’s exactly what happens and it’s why we have many customers on their third or even fourth Wired2Fire PC!  However, we deal in reality.  Electronics are highly complex and therefore relatively fragile items.  Unfortunately faults do occur! Fortunately, with a Wired2Fire system it is relatively rare event.  If something does go wrong we are here to help.

We’ll offer as much help and advice as we can and if the need arises, we’ll get the PC back to base for surgery!  We do our best to make this as painless as possible without cutting corners.  It often surprises us, but some of our most dedicated customers have actually had the most problems!  This fact illustrates that we don’t forget about our customers as soon as the sale is made.  Once you are a Wired2Fire customer, you remain a Wired2Fire customer!