The Best Internet Services in Sequim, WA

Do you want fast and reliable internet service? Perhaps you’re new to the Olympic Peninsula or just looking for the best internet service in Sequim and Port Angeles.

…great news, we’ve go you covered! By the end of this article you’ll know what internet service providers are available, how to understand the different speed packages offered, and the best deals.

The three most common ways to receive internet service are cable broadband, DSL internet, and satellite internet. Cable internet is currently the fastest and most versatile of the three, DSL being the second best, and satellite being the slowest.

Cable Internet

To receive cable internet your home or business must have access to a cable line. To find out if your address is eligible for cable internet service, contact Wave Broadband at 1-866-928-3123. There are two companies offering cable internet in Port Angeles and Sequim:

DSL Internet

DSL internet works through your phone land-line and is also not available to everyone in Sequim and Port Angeles, but is more widely available than cable internet. Three companies offer DSL internet locally:

Satellite Internet

Numerous satellite internet providers offer service to the Olympic Peninsula and are national companies:

What You Should Know Before Choosing an Internet Service

There are a few technical concepts you want to have a grasp on before choosing the right internet service for your home or business.

Download Speed

What is 50 megabits per second download speed? What is upload speed and latency? When you type a search into Google you are uploading a small piece of information to their servers. When Google sends search results back to you, you download that information. How quickly this happens is measured in megabits per second or abbreviated as Mbps. How quickly searching occurs on a web browser depends more on the program you’re using (Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, etc) and the computer your using, and not so much how fast your internet is. This is because the amount of data being downloaded and uploaded in searches is so small. However, if you watch NetflixYoutube, or other videos, you will require faster download speeds, preferably at least 5 Mbps, depending on the video quality you want. If, however, you want Netflix’s 4K UHD stream, you will need 25 Mbs download speed and more if other people in your house will be using the internet simultaneously.

Upload Speed

Upload speed is not as important to most people unless they use cloud storage. Upload speed measures how quickly files and data can be sent from your computer to the internet (other servers). With faster upload speeds, cloud storage users will see their files sync and upload to cloud servers much faster. Businesses managing their websites will also benefit from faster upload speed.

Latency

There is nothing more important to online gamers than internet latency. Latency is measured in milliseconds or ms, and is the amount of delay between your computer and a remote server. In other words when you hit a button on your computer how long does it take for that information to get to a remote server and then acknowledgement of that action to get back to your computer. Wave’s internet service offers a distinct advantage to gamers in Sequim and Port Angeles for just this reason! Wave customers will typically see 15ms of latency to a server in Seattle, WA. This is exceptional and is less than half of what DSL users get and a fraction of what satellite providers offer.

Data Transfer Usage

Internet service providers limit how much total data can be uploaded and downloaded per month. This is typically measured in gigabytes (GB) per month. The average internet user will not exceed 150 GB per month and if you don’t watch a lot of video online your usage could be closer to 50 GB. However if you are an avid user of digital media resources including movies, music, and gaming, you could potentially break well past 400 GB per month. The important thing to remember when considering your data transfer usage is that most internet providers will charge you a steep fee for going over your allotment and it is cheaper to increase your monthly data transfer usage before you go over.

Conclusion: What Type and How Much

Understanding internet service.The company offering the fastest speeds at the most competitive prices is Wave Broadband. However, because not everyone has a cable line running to their home or business, you may have to look to other options. If internet latency and data transfer usage are not concerns for you, then we recommend satellite internet. Most people however will find the data usage limits to be a problem and will be better suited to a DSL provider like Century Link.

Assai Tech: One Place For All Your Technology Needs

Do you have more questions? Feel free to CONTACT US for a free personalized consultation. We offer numerous computer and technology services including computer repair, technology tutoring, web design and development, data recovery, and more. We are a local tech business in Sequim, WA and would love to help make technology your friend and not a foe!

Buying a New Computer

I think most people would agree:

Laptop repair Sequim and service.Buying a new computer can be a daunting and confusing task.

Making sense of computer specs and the latest technical jargon is difficult and time consuming.

Or is it?

Well, it turns out, with just a basic understanding of 4 simple things, you can get exactly what you need…

…and stay within your budget.

In this quick article I’m going to explain what you need to know before shopping for a computer, tablet, or phone.

The 4 Things You Need to Understand Before Buying a New Computer

All computers and devices are made up of numerous individual components. But there are really only four that you need to understand when making a purchase.

Processor or CPU

The processor is the engine of the computer and is responsible for making an unimaginable number of calculations every second. Processors operate at speeds measured in gigahertz (GHz). 1.0 GHz is slow and 4 GHz is very fast. Processors also have multiple cores which amount to separate engines driving different tasks simultaneously and independently. Some CPUs divide each of their cores into 2 threads. Threads function similarly to cores, however they split the resources of a core and thus are not as fast as actual cores. In other words a CPU with 4 threads made up of 2 cores will not perform as well as a CPU with 4 cores. The splitting of cores is known as hyper-threading.

RAM or Memory

RAM is measured in gigabytes (GB). When you open an app or program on your device it is loaded into RAM. The more programs you run at one time the more RAM you use up. Some programs, such as picture editors and games use large amounts of RAM. Other programs like Chrome or Word use very little RAM. When all of a computer’s RAM is used up it will slow down dramatically and it might even crash.

GPU or Graphics Card

Graphics cards (GPUs) are responsible for drawing or rendering the images that appears on your screen or monitor. GPUs are essentially CPUs that are dedicated to visual stuff. Like CPUs, they also operate at speeds measured in GHz. Most computers and devices do not have separate (discrete) GPUs. Instead they are built-in to the CPU. This is okay assuming you will not be doing picture or video editing, or playing games.

Storage: HDD or SSD?

A computer’s files and data are stored on either a hard disk drive (HDD) or a solid state drive (SSD). Storage capacity is measured in gigabytes (GB) and terabytes (TB). 1,000 GB is equal to 1 TB.  HDDs have enormous capacity (1 to 4 TB), but are very slow. SSDs have much lower capacity (128 GB to 512 GB), but are lightning fast.

What It All Boils Down To…

Buying a new computer and taking notes.A CPU with 2 cores and 4 threads running at 2.0 Ghz or more, such as Intel’s i3 processors, is perfect for most people’s needs. Step up to an Intel i5 if you are a gamer, but not the i7. They are a waste of your money because they will be bottlenecked by the CPU. Games do not use more than 4 cores. The i5 series of processors offer 4 cores without hyper-threading. If you will be editing pictures or video, or doing content creation you will benefit from the hyper-threading offered by the i7 CPUs which have 4 cores and 8 threads.

The average person will not use more than 8 GB of RAM and therefore will never know the difference if they buy a computer with 12 or 18 GB. If you are a gamer or a media content creator, then you might look at getting 12 or 16 GB of RAM.

Nearly all AMD and Intel CPUs have GPUs built-in. Most users will not utilize the additional resources offered by a separate (or discrete) GPU. However, if you will be gaming or working with 3D virtual environments your discrete GPU will be the most significant component in your computer.

I recommend a computer with atleast a 256GB SSD for most of my clients. There is also the option of having one of each and that is well worth the money for people requiring lots of storage space. You can put your enormous library of pictures and videos on the HDD and everything else on the SSD.

Assai Tech: One Place For All Your Technology Needs

Do you have more questions? Feel free to contact us at (360) 797-1150 for a free personalized consultation and tips to maintaining your PC. Also, visit Assai Tech and find more helpful resources and discover how we can simplify your life and bring you the tools to get things done.

How to Avoid Gaming PC Bottlenecks?

It only takes one poor component to undermine the whole computer…

You might have an incredible processor under the hood, but with an on-board graphics card your computer is going nowhere very quickly. Unfortunately, when you purchased this computer you paid for the expensive processor that is never able to perform to it’s potential. The money that was spent on your processor could have been more wisely invested in a cheaper processor and and a more expensive discrete graphics card.

A graph revealing that the CPU is bottlenecked by the GPU.
A Bottlenecked CPU

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What is a bottleneck?

Imagine your computer is a team of about 6 people working diligently to read, write, process, and render information.  Each person works at a station in what is similar to an assembly line.  A bottleneck occurs when one of these people (or computer components) is unable to keep up with the others and slows down the whole process.  Just recently, I had a customer request a custom computer.  He gave me a list of the components he wanted and a price one of our competitors quoted him.  I responded by beating the competitors price by 10%, and suggested an HPPC computer that is 35% cheaper and performs 60% faster.  I also directed him to performance benchmarks that illustrate the differences in performance.  Bottlenecks are a big problem in the computer industry.

How do you know if your gaming PC has a bottleneck?

Determining whether your computer is bottlenecked is not easy.  To complicate matters this also depends on what your computer is used for.  One way to get a rough idea is to check the ‘Windows Experience Index’ on your computer.

Left click the Start menu globe  in the lower right corner. > Type  wei  into the search box. > Left click  Check the windows experience index.
The best way to determine if your computer is bottlenecked is to contact us for a free consultation.

A graph showing a GPU that is bottlenecked by a CPU.
A Bottlenecked GPU

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How to Avoid Gaming PC Bottlenecks

As a rule of thumb your GPU should cost about 20% more than your CPU. In other words, spend $260 on an Intel i5 CPU and $320 for a GTX 1060 GPU. This is a general concept and works most of the time. Motherboards don’t bottleneck gaming PCs, but for your own sake, don’t grab the cheapest one you can find. Expect to pay $150 for quality and longevity.

Is there a remedy for bottlenecks?

Yes, you don’t need to buy a new computer to improve gaming performance. It’s often times cheaper to have your computer upgraded with your specific needs in mind.  Call Assai Tech, and we can dramatically improve the performance of your computer.

How do custom gaming PCs avoid bottlenecks?

There are two main advantages to owning a custom computer.  First, having a computer designed for your specific use is the only way to avoid bottlenecks completely.  Avoiding bottlenecks saves you money and increases performance.  Second, custom computers do not have proprietary components and are therefore fully upgradeable.  And if a custom computer needs repair,  just the faulty component can be replaced.  That sure beats buying a whole new computer.

Is it common for computers to have bottlenecks?

It’s very common, in fact, it’s been the norm for years now.  One reason for this is that the growth in technology has not been uniform over the past 6 years.  For example, a computer sold 6 years ago had a quarter the amount of RAM compared a computer selling for the same price today.  Today’s RAM operates at more than twice the speed of yesterday’s RAM.  This is an incredible improvement in capacity and performance.  Meanwhile, hard drive performance, dollar for dollar, has not improved at all.  Another reason bottlenecked computers are so common is quite simply ‘marketing’.  Hardware manufacturers are great at marketing their products, while computer manufacturers are great at cutting costs.  You end up with an exciting processor without the components to tap its potential.

Computer Maintenance Basics

Have you noticed that computers slow down over time? It’s something we all experience, but few know what to do about it.

Good news, it’s not difficult or time consuming to keep your computer running fast and reliable!

In this article I’ll share with you a few things you can do to keep your computer healthy and happy. Try and remember to go through this list a few times every year.

Clean Up Your Hard Drive

Over time computers gradually create junk files. This is especially true if you install and uninstall programs frequently and also if you use a lot of web applications like social media. To remove unnecessary files or junk files from your computer you need to run a system cleaning program. We recommend you download CCleaner and run both the disk cleaning and registry cleaning utilities every couple months. This is very easy to do and is surprisingly effective at not only speeding up your computer, but also keeping your web browser working properly.

Defragment Your Hard Drive

To improve the integrity and efficiency of your hard drive run a disk defragmenting program such as Windows Disk Defragmenter. This utility is part of the windows operating systems and can be found by typing “defrag” into the windows search bar either in the start menu or next to the start button in the lower left of your screen.

A bit better option is to download and install a program called Defraggler. After opening the program select the drive you want to optimize and click “Defrag”.

Update Your Software and Operating System

Software developers frequently fix and improve their products by releasing patches, also known as updates. Each new patch brings your software to a newer version or revision. To find out which version you currently have look for the ‘About’ option in the program menu. This is sometimes found in the help menu. Although patches can sometimes be downloaded from within the software itself, it is often necessary to go to the company’s website to find the latest patch for your program.  The software company’s website can easily be found by typing the company name into an internet search engine. When you find the company website look for ‘Support’, ‘Product Support’, ‘Patches’, or ‘Updates’. There you will be able to download and run the latest patch. Be sure and check the version or revision number of the patch. If you have version 3.2 and the latest patch is version 3.5 then you want to download and install the patch.  However, if you already have version 3.5 then your software is already up to date.

Be sure to update your operating system often.  To do this run Windows Update by typing “update” in the windows search bar.

Or if you want to save yourself time you can set ‘Windows Update’ to run automatically on a schedule.  To setup automatic updates go to Windows Update and click Change settings.

Update Your Hardware Drivers

Hardware are physical devices or components that make up your computer. Each component requires a driver to function. Drivers are software that manage and operate your hardware components. Just like software companies release patches for their products, hardware companies release updated drivers for their products. Updating your hardware drivers is often overlooked by computer owners and can cause a multitude of problems.  Updating your hardware drivers is very similar to patching your software. Windows Update has a nominal ability to update your drivers. When running Windows Update look for a tab or menu called Hardware Updates. Unfortunately Windows Update often times doesn’t have the most complete and up to date drivers available for download. The best way to update your hardware drivers is to download the newest drivers for your particular hardware directly from the manufacturer’s web-site. To do this you must know what hardware components you have in your computer and who the manufacturer is for each.

Professional System Optimization

Contact Assai Tech for local computer repair in Sequim, WA. We recommend semi-annual professional maintenance for all your devices. You will be amazed by how fast and reliable your computers are after we complete a full system optimization.