Computers are something that everyone needs for their daily life. Whether it’s for work, surfing the internet, checking the news, or even gaming, the quality and features of your PC you have will reflect your experience day-to-day. While most consumers will be buying their computer from a box store, the smartest shoppers are those looking elsewhere. In fact, they’re searching for all the best parts (at a bargain price) in order to build a PC that is powerful, fast, and able to take on all of your activities and daily tasks. Then, they’ll need to know how to build a PC step by step. Or in some cases, how to build a gaming PC.
At first, glance, learning how to build a PC step by step may sound like something suited to a high-level computer expert or someone who majored in computer engineering. Don’t worry, it’s actually much more simplistic and doesn’t require much background experience to do. In reality, building your own PC comes down to patience and following instructions. In this case, it is sort of like building furniture from a box store. You also might wonder – how much does it cost to build your own PC? We’ll cover all that and discuss the parts you’ll need to build your own PC. In addition to some of the steps, you’ll need to take in order to put it all together. But first, let’s discuss some of the major questions and concerns:
But first, if at any point you struggle with the process, or just generally need IT assistance, it’s best to get help from an expert in the field. JustAnswer is a platform that has access to thousands of different experts in numerous fields, and they can answer any of your questions, including all things computers!
Costs to build your own PC:
What’s great about this question isn’t how much it costs, but what you are willing to spend to get everything you need in your PC. A standard desktop computer you buy from a box store could potentially cost around $699. With a little savvy shopping and the right parts, you can build a PC that has very similar performance for closer to the $300 – $400 range.
If you’ll be primarily using your computer for PC gaming, you’ll need to first understand how to build a gaming PC specifically. That means, deciding what kind of performance you are looking to obtain. Some of the questions you should be answering are:
- What resolution will I be running at? 1080p? 1440p? Etc.
- What is the refresh rate of my monitor? 30hz? 60hz? 144hz?
- What frame rate am I looking to achieve? 60 fps? 120fps?
- What games will I be playing primarily? Are these games recommended system requirements?
- What is my overall budget? Am I willing to spend a lot in order to get what I’m looking for?
Answering these questions will allow you to understand what parts of your system you need to spend more on to achieve the build you’re happy with. In the end, it will allow finding how to build a gaming PC with the best parts. Speaking of, Acer offers popular monitors, so check them out when you shop.
What will I need?
Obviously, to build a PC you will need the parts! No matter what type of PC you are building or how much you are looking to spend, the components of a PC remain the same. If you’re looking for a few builds to work from, or set as a starting point, definitely check out PCPartPicker, as they have all the info you need to start building your PC on paper and browsing for the best prices.
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That being said, these are some of the components that you’ll need to know about in order to learn how to build a PC step by step:
The main circuit board of the computer, and all of your components will connect to your motherboard, so buying quality from Newegg is recommended.
The CPU might be the most important component of your build, so taking the time to find the right processor is critical to your needs. Also, make sure to invest in thermal paste if it’s not included with your processor.
The graphics card is integral for those looking to do any kind of modern gaming. The GPU handles any sort of graphical or visual data, such as gaming or video editing. That said, if you are looking for how to build a gaming PC this is important. GPUs are constantly improving and evolving, which means older models that still perform very well are available at a much fairer price, so you have the option to spend as much as you want/are willing here. Keep in mind you’ll have to decide between desktop or workstation GPUs.
Where all of your content, files, and data are stored. An SSD is recommended for faster speeds, but you can find HDD drive builds that can help lower the cost, for the sacrifice of speed.
Your memory (RAM) is short-term data storage used to help the processing of applications and activities. The more you’re running, the more you’ll need. If you often have multiple high process use applications running on your machine at once, you’ll want to invest in more RAM.
The power source for all the components of your PC, this part is dependent on how much power and resources your other components will need. It’s important to make sure that your PSU and components are compatible with one another, and that the PSU is strong enough to produce power to each and every component.
Your tower is what will hold it all together. There are many different types of cases you can invest in, but the most important things to consider are:
- Will all of the components fit within the case you are looking for?
- How is the overall airflow? Does the case have sufficient airflow to draw in cool air, and push out hot air?
Unlike when you purchase a pre-built PC from a big box store, your computer will not come pre-installed with an OS (Windows is preferred), so you will need to buy a license in order to install it. However, if you are looking for a pre-built computer or laptop Acer offers amazing, quality options.
Once your computer is up and running, use your new toy to learn about data science, programming, and even AI in a course from Udacity.
How to Build A PC Step By Step:
Once you have all of your components and are ready to start putting it together, you’ll want to clean your workspace to make sure no components get dirty or damaged. Make sure to work on a non-static surface, in order to avoid any electric shock that can damage the components. You’ll also need a Philips-head screwdriver on hand to install all the pieces. Last, keep all of your instruction booklets for your components, as they are essential to the installation process.
- Pull out your motherboard and go to the installation section of your manual.
- Unlock the processor socket on your motherboard, and line up the little golden triangle of your processor to the same symbol as the motherboard. Then flip the latch to lock in place. Apply a small amount of thermal paste to the silicon square on your processor, and then line up your heat sink with the screws surrounding your processor and place the heat sink. Then, screw your heat sink in place. Plug the heat sink’s cooling fan into the motherboard (refer to your instructions).
- Install the motherboard (refer to instructions) within your case. You’ll want to be careful when screwing in the motherboard, as these are very fragile. Make sure to be working on a flat surface.
- Install your power supply, either at the top or bottom of your case, where you’ll find a square that will fit the PSU. Slot it in and screw into place.
- Install your memory into the vertical sockets of the motherboard, beside the CPU. Line them up and slot them in, starting from left to right. They should lock into place easily.
- For storage, place this in an empty bay in the front of the case and screw it into place. Then connect to the motherboard according to instructions.
- Look through your motherboard instructions for installing the GPU. Locate the PCIe slot, this is where you will connect the GPU. Line up the back of the GPU and push the component into the slot. Then, fasten it with screws to the case.
- Finish plugging the motherboard into the case (power button, USB ports, etc.), as well as plugging in the case fans into the motherboard to ensure sufficient cooling.
- Boot up the PC and install Windows.
Remember when trying to build your own PC, always be patient when installing. Additionally, don’t force components into the motherboard, as these are fragile and easy to break. Your motherboard manual should help you get through most of the installation process. However, don’t be afraid to search around on YouTube for a more visual step-by-step guide if you ever get stuck. Then if you are looking for how to build a gaming PC, keep in mind the decisions about which parts are best for what you need.
If you’d rather buy a computer, to make your decision easier, head to Mac vs Windows: Which One Should You Get?
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