Tips Choosing Hardware for Building a New Computer

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Tips Building a Computer by Choosing Hardware

To build a new desktop computer for house, and after talking about build a computer with a number of friends, I realized that most people have no idea what goes into building a computer yourself… so this series will explain the basics of building your own custom PC.

My primary goal with the new computer was to have a quad core machine with lots of memory, and two DVI ports so I can run dual monitors. I didn’t have a huge budget, so the configuration I chose was the best I could find for the money I had.

Why Should I Build a Computer Anyway?
Sure, building your own computer is something of a rite of passage for geeks… but that isn’t reason enough to build your own computer. Here’s a few reasons for you to ponder:

* You can more easily upgrade a custom-built computer.
* By hand-picking the components, you’ll end up with a much faster computer than buying a low-end Dell, which uses somewhat inferior components in order to keep the costs down.
* You can overclock the computer to get a lot more speed than the components are spec’d for.

If you think you’ll be able to build yourself a cheaper computer than a low-end Dell, you are mistaken. If you are looking for absolute budget deals, buy a Dell. Otherwise, building a computer is a good option.

Pick Your Price Point
The first thing you need to do is figure out how much you are willing to spend… whether $500 or $5000.

You should be able to build a very fast computer for less than $1000, just keep in mind that the very latest components are going to be way more expensive than they are worth. If you choose the next edition down for any component, you’ll probably save a ton of money.

What Parts Do I Need?
Building your own computer gives you infinite possibilities in the components that you choose… want three hard drives? No problem! But what are the bare minimum parts you need for a computer?

* Case with a Power Supply
* Motherboard – Note: some motherboards come with integrated video, most have integrated sound and network.
* Processor
* Memory (RAM)
* Hard Drive
* Video Card

Optional parts:

* DVD/CD drive – Not technically necessary, but important for installing the OS.
* LCD Monitor - If you don’t already have one.
* Keyboard/Mouse – If you don’t already have them.
* Speakers – If you don’t already have them, and want sound.
* Etc – There are many other optional components you could add, but we won’t cover them all.

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