EVGA introduced a new way to convince you to buy its products: the DIY Configurator, a tool that helps you pick some components, bundle them up, and get a discount on the whole package. The tool is unlikely to convince many enthusiasts to stop hunting for the best products and prices elsewhere, but it could help for EVGA fans put together an EVGA-centric build.
The DIY Configurator requires you to select your graphics card, case, and power supply. You can also choose to order a motherboard, cooling solution, mouse, or SLI bridge. All of those parts will, of course, be made by EVGA. That's enough to get your rig started, but you're going to have to buy your CPU, memory, storage, monitor, and keyboard elsewhere.
The value, though, comes from guidance and discounts. As you pick the EVGA products you want, the DIY Configurator will automatically prevent you from choosing parts that aren't compatible with each other, and once you've decided on your graphics card, case, and PSU, it offers a discount on the bundle.
Choosing the GTX 1080 Ti SC2 Gaming card, for example, will make the DIY Configurator rule out the Hadron Hydro mini-ITX case. That makes it easy to avoid a mistake that can mean the difference between assembling your system right away and having to wait for a new case to arrive. The discount is also supposed to ensure you'll pay as little as possible. We were shown a $165 discount on that card, a DG-87 case, and the SuperNOVA 650 P2 PSU, which dropped the total price of the trio from $1,100 to $935. The same parts would cost $1,113 on Newegg, so in this case it would make sense to buy from EVGA.
That's assuming you want to buy a bunch of EVGA parts, however. Fancy a different graphics card? That's going to be a no-go. Want another manufacturer's case? Nuh-uh. The DIY Configurator effectively asks you to choose between its blend of savings and convenience or the freedom you have when you buy parts from other sellers. That could be tempting for some people, but others are likely to find it a little too limiting.
EVGA's also made sure you can't buy a bundle via the DIY Configurator, return whatever component you don't like, and keep the discount. "Once purchased, individual components may not be returned for a refund," EVGA said on the DIY Configurator website. "DIY bundles will not be refunded in whole or in part if a price change occurs after purchase. In accordance with EVGA's Store Terms, DIY bundles may only be returned for a refund after requesting and receiving an RMA, and all individual components of the DIY bundle are returned to EVGA."
Still, there's bound to be a market for something like the DIY Configurator. Offerings like this seem to be increasingly popular--just look at the BLD service NZXT announced earlier this month. BLD differs from the DIY Configurator in that it offers products from a variety of manufacturers (with the natural exception of the cases), but the overall goal of lowering the barriers of entry for wannabe PC-builders is pretty much the same. Maybe that will eventually result in more people wanting to build their own PCs instead of buying a manufacturer's pre-made system.