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Buying components from eBay? Is it safe?

Last response: in Systems
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January 2, 2012 9:50:16 AM

Hi all!

So, I've been planning my first proper build for quite some time now, constantly tweaking and reevaluating the component choices as time goes on. For example I previously wanted a GTX 560ti but am now planning on GTX 580.

I have been looking for the components I need on www.novatech.co.uk which is a really good site, and my Dad used them to build his computer. They have astonishing customer service. However, their prices are slightly on the steep side, £20 here, £30 there, which adds up when you're selecting many componeets for a whole new build. So I looked at amazon.co.uk and a lot of their stuff is quite cheap, but other components are just ludicrously expensive. I then looked at eBay to see if they have new OR used pc components. Almost everything is cheaper on eBay, AND I get proper payer protection with PayPal so if anything terrible happens I can always get my money back. I cut off about £200 from my build price estimate if i'm buying everything from eBay. (comes to about £1000)

BUT!

I haven't ever heard of people buying pc components from eBay or indeed second-hand pc parts in general, so I wondered if the exotic and interesting denizens of Tom's Hardware knew anything about it. First hand experience would be most useful!!! Would it just be better to stick with what I know? (I.e. Novatech)

Thanks!

P.S. Here's the build...

GPU KFA2 GTX 580 Anarchy
CPU i5 2500K
PSU OCZ ModXStream Pro 700W
Motherboard Asus Sabertooth (P67)
Sound card Creative Labs Audigy SE
Case ????? (Storm scout maybe, not too bothered about the case (£40)
Operating System Windows 7 64 bit HP
CPU cooler Coolermaster Vortex
RAM Corsair Vengeance (8GB)
Hard Drive OCZ Agility 3 (SSD 60GB) - I have another hard drive from my previous computer, shouldn't bottleneck anything...
Monitor Novatech nVision 22” LED
Keyboard Illuminated keyboard
a b B Homebuilt system
January 2, 2012 10:56:16 AM

GPU is good but would be nice if you can get the MSi LXe one well i just like MSI brand,
CPU is good at i5 2500k
PSU is also good but corsair would be nice
mobo is good
sound card is creative i love creative.
windows 7 64b full product, get the ultimate one, ram,cooler, SSD(get the 120gb one if you can), monitor,keyboard all good, that should give you no problem
a b B Homebuilt system
January 2, 2012 11:01:45 AM

You know, there are people who will try to make a quick buck by selling you junk.
Before you bid on something, it is utmost important to check the sellers rating. I would only buy from people who have near 100% positive feedback, and have sold at least several items, maybe 20 or more. Beware items that are sold "as is" or "no refunds", buy from reputable sources and you can find some very good deals on eBay. Personally, I don't buy used electronics. I prefer new out of the box myself.
I used to collect cast iron cookware, and bought many, many, many pieces over the years from eBay, and never had a bad experience, buying only from what I considered very high rated sellers. But Griswold cast iron is one thing, and a motherboard is another!
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January 2, 2012 11:47:56 AM

If you buy from a store and it breaks in 30 days you can generally get it exchanged or get a refund. If you get it from Ebay especially USED CHEAPER its probably going to say no refunds and no returns. Paypal will help against fraud, but if the item was legit, you just cant ask for a refund because you changed your mind our you bought an incompatible part.
January 3, 2012 8:14:30 AM

I see.

I have used eBay for years now, I've just never had any experience with buying pc parts on eBay. I think that it would be sensible to not buy 2nd hand or used items, unless they have 100% positive feedback or close.

Thanks a lot for the info!
!