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I bought a Killer Notebook - Listen up.

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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September 12, 2006 1:08:01 AM

If your looking for a notebook and aren’t sure where to make your purchase, there is no need to look any further. Killer Notebooks is hands down the best company for you to buy a notebook from. Like many of you, I was looking for the best bang for my buck. I’ve researched several different notebook manufacturers like Dell, Alienware, and others not nearly as mainstream, and come to one conclusion. Buying from KN is by far the best deal around. I was able to get twice the computer for the same money I was going to spend elsewhere. There are two things that have been proven to make a successful business. A great product and excellent customer service, and KN has both in spades. Throughout the entire process KN and its owner Mark Mueller have been unbelievable in there willingness to provide exemplary customer service. Any and all questions about my notebook have been answered promptly by either email or phone. Its nice to be able to speak directly with the person designing and building your notebook, rather than someone getting paid to answer the telephone in some foreign country. KN makes a solid product of unprecedented quality, that is technologically up to date, and not something one of the big companies is trying to offload on you to make room for there next big shipment. This is one very satisfied customer who will do business with Killer Notebooks in the future, and who suggests anyone needing a notebook do the same.

Rusty Greer
Core 2 Duo T7600 2.33Ghz
2 GB DDR2-667 RAM
17” WSXGA 1680 X 1050 Screen
GeForce 7900 GTX 512MB
100 GB 7,200 RPM Hard Drive
A/B/G+ 108Mbps Wireless
September 13, 2006 3:08:56 PM

I agree completely. I ordered a Wakazachi from Killer Notebooks in July, and I am a very happy customer. There is nothing I don't like about the notebook, it is beautifully made, nice display, keyboard is very comfortable, movies look great, games play well, it doesn't run hot. Customer service both before and after the sale has been the best, Mark always responds promptly to any question. He makes a quality product and stands behind it, and you simply can't beat the price. I spent months researching before I decided to buy, and configured many other systems online. Killer Notebooks delivers the best value without sacrificing quality in any way. What more can you ask for?
September 13, 2006 5:44:23 PM

I bought an Assassin from KN in August and I love the thing. This notebook is ridiculously huge. I couldn't stop laughing at how big it was when I opened up the box. I had seen comparison pics from Alienware at E3 but didn't realize how freakishly big it is. My friends call it the MOAB -Mother Of All noteBooks(I'm in the Marine Corp, we have acronyms for everything).

I started out searching for a destkop replacement from Alienware. I really liked what I saw with mALX but $4500 was a bit much so I searched for a less expensive alternative. A lot of the other sites i.e. cyberpowerpc, ibuypower, widwopc, all sold the same chasis but they either had a 5400 rpm hd, and or 7800 gtx sli for several hundred $'s more at the time. KN offered 7900 gtx sli w/7200 rpm hd.

I already knew what I wanted so I didn't really have that many questions but Mark kept me up to date with the progress with personal emails like an improved mobo. Alienware does something similar but its a generic email saying your laptop is at this stage of construction (around 2002 don't know if thats changed).

At first I was skeptical because I had never heard of KN but I am very satisfied with what I received and would buy from KN again. I'm certain that the other companies are good alternatives too but I don't think I would've gotten the same personal touch.
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September 13, 2006 11:19:24 PM

I would love to hear more comments, expecially form people with more then 2 posts.
September 13, 2006 11:23:05 PM

Hmmm... Your experience sounds different than mine.
I try not to bash Mark; it's a fantasic machine at a better price than I could find anywhere else. I picture him as some sort of modern ninja/pirate hyjacking cpu's because he gets what others can't. But the interaction you all got was much different than mine.

Ordering wasn’t as smooth as I’d hoped. His website needs help since it really doesn’t adequately tell you what’s shipping or how components and options really work; and there isn’t much in the way of “online support” or forums (the best place is here). Another concern is that when I emailed questions, they were seldom responded to during “normal business hours”. Just guessing here, but Killernotebooks isn’t his real job… maybe he’s just a enthusiast that knows the right folks. Regardless, I had some basic questions like what it shipped with and whether or not I could get some extras (powercord) and it took three days just to exchange a couple emails and get the order placed. Concern two was payment via paypal… this isn’t a Ebay purchase and real online shops take plastic directly. Like I said though, it’s a small operation and nothing was terribly out of the ordinary for a young startup, and emails to DELL could take months before a response is ever made. Another point I’d like to make is that Mark caters to the high end gamer laptop. I didn’t feel he was trying to sell me something I didn’t need; he understood how I planned to use this machine and made recommendations that were well suited to my wants and desires.

Killernotebooks has a 10 day delivery “rule”; must be more of a guideline… damn pirates. I ordered August 11, received August 28; 17 days plus 3 days of queries at the start. Still got me hard to find chipsets quicker than others had released, but I can’t say I was happy about it. Unlike you all, I had to query him after dates slipped by without a peep and a successfully charged credit card bill headed my way. The responses to my simple "Has it shipped?" were vaguely worded instead of the hard definative date.. Example response: "I was thinking about Tuesday" (which it didn't ship on btw)..

Once I got it, it had a driver error.. go to reinstall, and oops!, it didn't ship with that driver. No problem, hit the website support and oops! again.. nothing even listed for the executioner. Had to figure out it was a gigabyte driver and guess the model to upload it directly from the manufacturer..

Also had a really dumb question about how to disable the touchpad.. Somewhere in the exchange of emails, the problem that his solution didn't work was overlooked and I assume he's forgotten all about it.. Now I have to pester again to figure out what's probably something really easy.

I also still have a rectangular hole in my lid meant for some label that was going to "be shipped later".. two weeks later; still the hole... damn, damn pirates..

All these things I accept. I know he's probably a one man outfit and it's tough to stay on top of everything. Folks buying from him should understand that Killernotebooks isn't at all like dealing with Dell or Alienware. They have "systems" to track everything... Bet Mark uses post-it's :wink: Understanding you're dealing with an individual, and all that implies... the good and the bad, is part of ordering with Killernotebooks.
September 13, 2006 11:38:49 PM

So would you order from KN or Dell next time if you had a chance? Myself, I am a Techie so my support is limited to "I know this is broken, send me it". Other things I can manage.
September 14, 2006 5:12:29 AM

Yea, I hit a few snags on that one, you are correct on one thing, I am like Ragnar Danneskjöld.

I would like to mention a few things here in defence of this situation:

1. This is what I do full time, but I was going through a custody case for my daughter, which I was my own lawyer for and won. That is over, "The package is secure."

2. That order was placed on: 8/11/2006 and shipped: 8/24/2006.
8/11 was a Friday. This was shipped within 9 business days, but I do in almost 99% of cases ship within 10 calendar days. Also, at that time I did not cary any inventory, which now I have $20,000 in inventory and can get machines out much quicker.

3. I now have a very sophisticated database for tracking everything from components all the way down to the day you get it.

4. Tech Support emails on this were probably not answered right away because of #1 above, but I am sorry, I usually answer within an hour. If that is still an issue with the touchpad press Fn + F1 to disable & enable the touchpad. that can be found on the index page XIII of the manual, very bottom right under Touchpad 7 Mouse, you can find how to work the touchpad features on page 2-11 of your printed manual and if you were to need to install a driver for some reason that would be on page 4-9.

5.
Quote:
His website needs help since it really doesn’t adequately tell you what’s shipping or how components and options really work; and there isn’t much in the way of “online support” or forums (the best place is here).
I am working on that now.

6.
Quote:
Concern two was payment via paypal… this isn’t a Ebay purchase and real online shops take plastic directly.
I am a PayPal merchant and I have found people know PayPal and feel more secure using it. Also, since I do "x" amount of business a month with PayPal my fees are actually much lower than a merchant account using them. Customer security and lower fees I can pass along to my customers is what I look at in most cases.

7.
Quote:
Like I said though, it’s a small operation and nothing was terribly out of the ordinary for a young startup,
This is very true, prior to June I was not selling a 40th a month in notebooks as I do today, so I did not have many of the things in place that I do now. It is true I was going through some growing pains as a small business at that time.

8.
Quote:
I also still have a rectangular hole in my lid meant for some label that was going to "be shipped later".. two weeks later
Yes, it is true, I have Executioner name plates on the way that are going out to everyone that got Executioners from me. I am waitin on the machine shop who told me I would have them in 4 days ... 5 weeks ago.

Quote:
Mark caters to the high end gamer laptop. I didn’t feel he was trying to sell me something I didn’t need; he understood how I planned to use this machine and made recommendations that were well suited to my wants and desires.
Amen brother.
Quote:

Understanding you're dealing with an individual, and all that implies... the good and the bad, is part of ordering with Killernotebooks.


I addressed a lot of "went wrong" with this order, and I am still working on some of it, namely site update etc. One thing is for sure, I do treat you like an individual even though I have a database now and have grown up a lot (I even took the Executioner picture with the gun and the whip off the site (for better or worse) I had a customer, Rusty above, call me the other day and said something I have been thinking a lot about... "One day you'll be so big, you aren't going to be able to cater to everyone's desires, and I know you probably don't want to hear that, but it's probably going to happen."

I appologize for a semi-bad experience you had.
September 14, 2006 3:43:05 PM

Quote:
So would you order from KN or Dell next time if you had a chance? Myself, I am a Techie so my support is limited to "I know this is broken, send me it". Other things I can manage.


I'd order from him again.. no question. The only real concern I ever had was whether he's gonna be around a year from now should I need support (computer business's come and go like restraunts). My concern wasn't large enough to go with the "safe" choice of Dell. Great machine, great price, and I could get custom setups with bleeding edge tech. I'm the same as you; I can manage most everything once I get the machine.

It wasn't a "semi-bad" experience for me; I went into the deal knowing that I was dealing with a person versus a corporation. I knew you were a small shop, and I've got a lot of experience dealing with little guys. I basically posted simply because some folk out there think working with Killernotebooks should run like ordering from Dell... It's not remotely like that since your personal issues will effect they business... if you take a vacation, the tech shop is closed :lol:  ; You'd never hear your Dell service rep stating anything like that, nor will it be likely you'll ever talk to the same person twice. It's the difference between dealing with a person and dealing with a machine... I'll take the person with all their individual traits over a non-personal checklist mentality any day.

edit: I figured the slow responses were due to the fact that you were out hyjacking DELL's order of core2duo cpu's :lol: 
September 14, 2006 7:30:53 PM

Cool, good to hear reviews. Yeah KN sounds like a good place, I'm pretty much set on buying from them. Did you do any custom logo design? Do they like Etch it into the Steel or something and cover it with carbon fiber? I just wish there was a little more info on that part. I really wanted the Nordic runes to be etched on.
September 15, 2006 1:49:10 AM

We do a ton of customizing. We brand it right into the case, or can use a metal foil with an adhesive back if you want something "almost" permanent.

One example:


More examples at:
K|N Customization page.
September 16, 2006 4:05:30 AM

Had my Wakazachi for about a week now. Runs great. Mark's been awesome about answer questions via email that I could probably have looked up in the manual. :oops: 

I can't believe you're answering tech support for ibuypower :lol: 
October 9, 2006 5:12:29 PM

My Wakizachi should be delivered today , so i will definitly let you all know how well i like it when it arrvies. I have not a single complaint about mark. He returned phone calls and emails very quickly. You have to realize this is his life though he has a daughter to take care of. The man is passionate about his work , and worked with me through countless emails. I would buy from him again!.
October 11, 2006 12:55:07 AM

Ive had my executioner for over a week now and im really loving it.
The screen is really nice,its blazing fast and runs all my apps.
Im even playing some games on it, Quake 4 ran smooth at the highest setting with antialiasing set to *16.

Im going to try some other new games on it as well as do some more video editing in after effects and composing using reason,cubase,reaktor. I shall report back.
October 12, 2006 3:48:22 PM

@KillerNotebooks -do you ship outside of the U.S.A - say New Zealand or Oman?? I am moving from NZ to Oman in december and you're note books are the type I'm looking at getting, or XPS or Alienware. Yours seem better value for money and imo look cooler too.
January 17, 2007 6:14:15 AM

Maaan, I want one so bad :D  but I don't have the money upfront :? ...there isn't $XX/month thing is there? ...'cause I am getting the money with my fall scholarship but now I have enough for a monthly fee :oops:  ...damn...I am in love with those Notebooks..... :D 
January 17, 2007 2:36:17 PM

THere is places on the net that gives loans for laptops.
January 17, 2007 6:26:47 PM

where?
January 18, 2007 5:59:31 PM

I don't see what the big deal is about KN, as far as I see its no different than any other company that uses clevo notebooks.

Is there anyone where I can buy a laptop with 7900 or 7950, just the laptop, no custom designs, just the dam computer and a warranty.

So far the best deal I see is gateway, with a 7900gs, 2 gig of 667mhz ram, 80 gig 7200, WSXGA or WUXGA and 3 year support and 3 year accidental under 2000.

I'd prefer the 7950, cheapest I found is around 2900, too much.

I don't think you can beat that, but i would love to see one with x1900, anyone know, please reply!
a b D Laptop
January 18, 2007 7:48:26 PM

Yea, except you are going to get the best customer service since Mark is willing to take the time to solve problems not only with his notebooks, but notebooks from other companies.

You can get a KN with a plain metallic finish with no designs on it btw.
The majority of the people who need a 7950 will also be willing to shell out the money for it. KN's executioner has one and its around 2800. Dell's XPS has one and is around the same price or more when similarly configured and I would take the executioner any day. I don't think ALienware offers a single 7950 and they are crap anyways. What I am saying is that if you want high end you are going to pay for it. If you want to see how good the Executioner really is see this article: Executioner vs. m9700
January 18, 2007 8:54:57 PM

I had high expectations for my Executioner and it has gone far beyond those expectations.

Quote:
I don't see what the big deal is about KN, as far as I see its no different than any other company that uses clevo notebooks.


If you aren't looking very closely K|N may look no different than any other notebook company. If you take into account the awesome customer service, the one of a kind custom cooling mods and the fact that the Executioner out performs it's competition...it seems like a no brainer to me.

I don't think you could find better customer service, quality and performance in one pacakge at a better price anywhere.

I sound like a commercial. grrr! (It is true though)
January 18, 2007 9:00:25 PM

Guess someday when I have 3500 dollars to burn I'll look at KN, but for now have to look at some cheaper laptops.
January 19, 2007 1:35:30 PM

I configured my executioner for just a tad over 3000 (with the custom gaming skin). I don't see why 3500 is necessary since it states on the website that the t7600 isn't really necessary since the t7400 easily overclocks to t7600 speeds. Plus with the extra cooling mark can put on the CPU (at no extra cost, all you have to do is let him know you plan on overclocking) I have no fear of heat issues at those speeds. Your choice though. Also, just for the record, Dell and Alienware are the same thing now.
January 19, 2007 4:34:07 PM

The big retailers always get you in the wallet with addons and warranty. If you really need top notch "specs" but can't pay you're stuck with either finding coupons and rebates to buy from Dell Gateway etc, or buying a notebook with less than amazing quality like Acer. Custom is really the way to go if you can, but min/maxing cost/performance is only going to lead you in the other direction. The reason has nothing to do with Custom retailers stealing your money...they simply don't cut corners on things like service,help,quality parts like ram and Hard Drives, build quality etc. If that's important to you, you'll go custom. If you want a 'flimsy toaster".. you'll buy Acer.. If you want a "bumper car" you buy Dell. I think the choice is clear
January 22, 2007 12:25:37 AM

hi,
very, very cool!

hope my kids don't see that! :)  oh, heck, i want one on mine!! that is when i get it.
suzy
!