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Things to Keep in Mind when Building a Gaming PC

Updated on September 13, 2015

Why Build Rather than Buy?

If you are a gaming enthusiast, you know that high-performing gaming PCs are rather expensive. A lot of people save up for years to buy their dream gaming PC. Have you ever considered building your own gaming PC? This way you can focus on the things that you really want instead of paying for a lot of peripheral things that you don't really need. For instance, if you are building your custom PC, you can skip a hyperthreaded CPU and focus on a better graphics card.

Moreover, it may also serve you in the long run to build your own PC, since it will be easier to upgrade and re-use certain components, according to a report by CNET that weighs the pros and cons of building versus buying.

Determine What You Need

If you are convinced that you want to build your own PC, you probably already know what it is that you want in it. Sure, you want it for gaming, but even in the field of gaming, there are several different ranges that you could operate out of. For instance, do you want an expensive graphics card or would you settle for an integrated GPU?

Intel's 5th gen processor comes with the newest integrated graphics, known as Iris Pro. With a 6th gen CPU, you could get a 28% graphics bump, which would rival some low/mid-range GPUs, according to Velocity Micro’s review of Intel's Skylake Processors. If you are feeling confused about what to choose, research is the only way out.

Look Up Reviews

If you are not entirely sure how to translate the specs of a particular component to your specific needs, you may want to read recommendations for gaming PCs of various ranges. Even if you do not subscribe to these recommendations word for word, it is still going to help you wrap your head around the specifications.

Moreover, while researching, opt for the bad reviews first, even for a component that has 80% five stars from hundreds of people, according to this pro tip from PC Gamer. This is because the bad review will likely tell you something related to the problem that you may face when working with the component.

Test before You Install

Once you have procured your processor, motherboard, RAM, hard drive and video card, there is nothing left to do except start building, right? Wrong. While the chances of receiving a Dead On Arrival component is rare, it does happen and must be tested for. You could do this simply by putting your motherboard on its box and installing the CPU, RAM, CPU cooler, video card and plug in your power supply and connect it to your monitor, according to one of tips for beginners from Life Hacker.

If your motherboard has a power button, you can start it up from there or you could use a screw driver to do the same. If you are at least able to get into DIOS, you will know for sure that everything is in working condition. This test saves you a lot of time when after having installed it all, you discover that a component was dead.

Ground Yourself When You Build

One of the most elementary tips for building your PC, and yet most commonly overlooked, is to remember to earth yourself. Even if you are wearing an earthing bracelet, get off the carpet and work on the floor. Preferably, take off your socks as well. Yet another tip for doing this is to plug your computer in and then switching your PSU off. This is an effective way to be grounded and not get any power into the system.

If the power supply does not have a switch, connect it to a surge protector and switch that off, according to the expert tip from Tom's Hardware. Be extra sure that there is no electricity in the system by checking the LED on the motherboard before you begin to work on it.

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