While the concept seems like something better left to hardcore PC builders, gamers, and enthusiasts, custom PC building has certain advantages that remain unmet by commercial, store-bought products. These include flexible design formats, better power supply options, and quality retail hardware, versatile upgrades, not to mention you won’t have to deal with useless bloatware that plague mass-produced computers.
Depending on what you’re aiming for, you can customise your build depending on your budget as well. All these are great reasons to keep your decision to build one of your own. But where do you start?
Read on and learn wise tips to help you get guided adequately on successfully building your very own PC.
Plan, Plan, Plan
You can never forgo the importance of planning when it comes to building your homebuilt computer. The materials are already pricey enough and buying the wrong component can significantly damage your budget. So, read everything you can get your hands on, preferably the latest ones.
There are plenty of resources you can find online from blog articles to YouTube videos or ask for advice from friends who have done their building. There’s even a PC building simulator available on Steam so you can virtually interact with components and get familiar with the parts before you get to the real thing.
List down the components that you need to prioritise buying and the brands and options that you prefer for each of those categories. These include:
- PC Case
- CPU Cooler
Think through every aspect of your build and don’t hesitate to join forums and reach out for advice from a greater community of builders.
If you have an old PC that’s not a decade old, there’s a chance you might be able to use these old parts to build your new rig. This is especially true if you’re not aiming for a high-end gaming PC. Typically, new builds strictly require new motherboards and processors or graphics cards. If you’ve just bought your PC some years ago, explore the possibility of using your old components.
Before you decide to do so, see to it that they are compatible with your new ones. See which parts can be salvaged from your old rig before you proceed shopping for new components.
If you’re finding the feat of finding parts that work together hard, follow the next step.
Use Parts Picker
PC Part Pickers has become the blanket term for virtual applications that helps custom PC builders find the right pieces for their custom-built PCs. What Parts Pickers do is that they scan multiple e-commerce platforms such as eBay and Amazon to parse through price data and recommend an optimal build based on this data.
Other advantages of using a PC Parts Picker includes:
Evaluating the compatibility of chosen parts against each other. The system will warn you if one or more of your selected components are not adaptable to the rest of your selections.
Automatically create group suggestions of components that work well together. This literally saves you days of manual research.
To help you get started, here’s a great list of the best PC Part Picker apps available today.
Still, even with the convenience of PC Parts Pickers, shopping around will let you compare online prices with deals from your local stores. Many retailers offer surprising discounts for open box models, and you can also ask around for tips.
Make no mistake of falling into discount traps, however. Always ask the store for their warranty policies and the availability of money-back guarantees.
You may also try to take advantage of seasonal sales. Black Mondays, Cyber Mondays, and the holidays are all great times to hit your favourite stores and dig for the best parts. If you think that’s a lot of waiting, some websites offer sweet daily deals where you can find bargain prices for your favourite. However, take it with a caveat and learn what the catch is before you bite.
Unless you really need a computer right now, there’s no harm in taking your time. If you’re eyeing for a component that you think is still out of your budget, waiting a little longer for the price to drop is an excellent strategy to save on your parts. Just make sure that you make a move before your part warranties expire.
Consider Buying Used Parts
This is something to consider when you really need that much savings. As much as possible, avoid buying used motherboards as they are the lifeblood of your computer. Computer memory, processors, and cases, however, can be found by a bargain from second-hand sellers.
Still, be very careful who you buy from. Second-hand components don’t have warranties and you can never guarantee how used up they were by their previous setups.
Here are great sites to buy used computer parts from.
Get Free Software
As has been mentioned earlier in this article, one of the best advantages of building your PC is not having to deal with bloatware or programs that are preloaded into the computer which slows down your system and takes up excessive disk space.
This means you’re starting from scratch – and that’s a good thing. You have free reign over the kind of software you want to have in your desktop. Here are premium-quality programs that won’t break your budget.
PC building is tricky but doable. Although you are certainly going to face some technical challenges along the way, you will never run out of tools and resources that can help you build a PC you’ll love.