The Gamers Behind Techbuyer's Esports Sponsorship

Techbuyer is sponsoring esports player, Custa with a configure to order gaming rig. This is an exciting way to show the gaming community that refurbished provides the same great performance without the expensive price tag, and to show that gaming tech can be accessible. 

As a technical team with years of experience configuring, refurbishing and repairing servers, it’s no surprise that we have several gaming enthusiasts amongst us. I caught up with Tom Idle, IT Support Technician and Chris Parry, Technical Services & Support Operative in Technical Test to find out more.

Chris, you work in the technical test team at Techbuyer, but you also have your own side business. Could you tell us more about what you get up to?

I’ve been working at Techbuyer for about six months now, focusing on server testing, configurations, and also gaming including testing graphic cards. I’ve also got my own business that I launched a year ago called Bantam Builds, where I build gaming rigs personalized to people’s exact requirements. Around 80% of my orders from last year were refurbished orders, which goes to show there is a need for affordable, quality gaming tech.

What’s the coolest project you’ve worked on so far?

Recently a UK customer approached me asking for a high spec gaming rig, suitable for professionally playing and video streaming Call Of Duty. It was an unusual one as they already had the parts ready to go – so I was providing the infrastructure including water cooling and extra RAM. I had free reign with the rig and enjoyed finding the highest quality components to enable silent play, and of course, it’s always rewarding to see the final design in all its colorful glory. All in all, I turned the order around within a week.

Gaming Rig

Tom, you’ve been working at Techbuyer for over four years now, initially as an apprentice. Could you tell us what you get up to in the IT team?

So, I’m an IT Support Technician, which essentially means if anything in the office stops working, I fix it! I also work closely with James Lord, our Infrastructure Manager on longer term projects. I started at Techbuyer about four years ago as an apprentice fresh out of college, and now I’m about to complete my level 4 qualification.

What got you both into gaming, and what was your first PC or system that you played on?

Tom: I remember queuing up after school to play on my school’s one Nintendo 64, which had old school Mario Kart and Super Mario. I think the first console I owned was a gaming cube when I was about 10 years old.  

Chris: See I’ve got quite a few years on Tom… So I think my first console would have been the Super Nintendo. We definitely both played Golden Eye though.

Tell me about building your first rig – how old were you, how did you raise the money to build it, etc

Chris: About ten years ago I had a pre-built rig from PC World which wasn’t good enough to play the game I wanted. James Lord (who would years later offer me a job at Techbuyer) helped me to buy the right parts and computer, in order to make a machine suitable. YouTube wasn’t big back then, so there were no ‘how to guides’ – only trying things out and hoping for the best!

Tom: I was about 12 or 13 years old when I built my first machine… I bought the complete wrong things! I got an HPE workstation with 2 CPUs –  which is a massive system. It even had Windows XP on it which shows how old it was! I had to figure out what extra RAM I needed and it took at least three attempts to buy the right graphic cards.

Are you both Overwatch players?

Tom: Yeah, we play together often! I’m a Lucio fan myself.

Chris: You can’t go wrong with Roadhog – so you don’t need to rely on healers.

Rich mentioned that this was very much a team idea. What got you thinking about starting a sponsorship with Custa?

Tom: Rich asked me for some input because he knew that I was interested in gaming streamers. I got in touch with lots of gamers through their business emails on Twitch – but I thought that Custa was the best choice as provides great insights into gameplay and also has tonnes of experience as a Desk Analyst for Overwatch.

Chris: Custa’s very therapeutic to listen to – definitely easy listening and comes across as very genuine. We knew he’d do a great job working with Techbuyer.