Fierce PC Interview
Fierce PC may not be the first name you think of when it comes to companies that'll help you spec out your PC and then build it for you, but with the recent launch of its new website this is certainly something the company is looking to change. We've also only had a modicum of exposure to Fierce PC ourselves, having only reviewed one of the company's systems, the Prodigy GT
, back in 2013. However, we'll be on the receiving end of one of Fierce PC's latest systems very soon and it looks, on paper at least, like a very desirable PC. As such, we thought we'd take some time to learn a bit more about the company and its new website and introduce it to anyone not already familiar with it before the review itself. To accomplish this, we spoke briefly with the company's Managing Director, Jon Carter.
bit-tech: Hi Jon. Please tell us a bit about Fierce PC – when did it start, where is it based and what is its current focus?
I started Fierce PC in 2009 as a hobby. I loved PCs and gaming and had always wanted to run my own business. In the early days I was building the PCs myself, but as time went on and we grew I relinquished the building side of things and passed this on to our specialist PC builders.
We’ve got a great facility now, based in Haslingden, Lancashire, which allows us to build and test a huge amount of PCs. We have dedicated teams for build, test and quality control. And we don’t forget about the customer once the PC has left as we also have a dedicated Customer Support team who are happy to help during and after your purchase.
Currently we are focused on our new website and making it into a place where, firstly, you’ll want to come and design your ideal gaming PC, at a price that you’ll be happy with, and, secondly, where you’ll be able to come and get vital upgrades.
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bit-tech: You just relaunched your website. What's new and what inspired the changes?
Everything is new! We knew that we had to create a website that would be exactly what the end-user wanted. We got everyone together and brain-stormed about what we liked and what really narked us about other websites. There was a surprising amount that we really didn’t like about other websites, so we took that information and put it along with our wish list of likes and set off designing the new site. It took well over a year to complete but we think we’ve done it.
You can now:
bit-tech: What safeguards are in place to prevent a user configuring a PC with components that are unsuitable for each other?
- Use our desktop or fully responsive mobile site
- Choose from a range of Budget (Ironwing), Performance (Blackfire), High-End
(Imperial) and Extreme (Dragon) Gaming PCs – all of which are customisable
- Design your PC without worrying about compatibility
- Pick from a huge range of accessories and monitors. If you know your brands you can
click on a brand shop (all within the configurator) and browse to your heart's content.
Alternatively, click on ‘All Brands’ and search by category and price etc.
- Get free shipping on all PCs within mainland UK (excluding highlands and islands)
- Upgrade from a great collection of recommended components
- Get advice via Live Chat, email or phone
Even if you’re an experienced gamer you may still be a novice when it comes to hardware, so we have built in protection to stop the user from choosing incompatible components – the system will warn the user and make a suggested selection that will work. This means you can swap and change components without fear that they won’t work together.
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bit-tech: What makes Fierce PC unique in the world of system integrators? Why should a customer choose you over someone else?
Our brand new website has lots of attributes that make us unique, but we’re very proud of our fully responsive mobile site. Most of our competitors don’t even have a mobile site, and if they do they’re not easy to use. You can use our site on your mobile phone or tablet which makes browsing a real joy. It’s also easy to place an order or add to your wish list. Live Chat is also available if you need advice and get quick answers if you’re really not sure which way to go, and you won’t find a sales person on the other end. We only have people that are happy to guide you in making your own mind up – it’s your PC so it should be your choice.
bit-tech: What sort of experience does your team have in building PCs?
Between the build team alone they have over 50 years of PC building experience. There’s not much they don’t know – and if they don’t know they find out. They are all hobbyists so they’re usually well ahead of the game. They’re always on tech websites, such as your own, reading up on the latest releases and getting excited about future launches. They’re all PC gamers too and are constantly working on their own builds.
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bit-tech: How are systems tested before being sent out to customers?
We have a comprehensive testing and quality control procedure. A PC never leaves the building without going through these checks. Even if a PC doesn’t come with Windows installed as an option we use a range of tests that we’ve loaded onto Windows To Go. Our High-End and Extreme PCs go through an intensive battery of tests over a number of days – we don’t send them out until we’re totally happy that they are stable.
bit-tech: How accessible is your website for more novice users who might not know the ins and outs of specific components and what's going to meet their needs?
For novices, or users new to PC gaming that might not want to spend a lot of money at this point, we have the Ironwing Series of Gaming PCs. These are still configurable PCs but have more basic options, such as hard drive and memory. We also have Gaming PC bundles, which are great for those just starting out, including monitor, keyboard and mouse.