The dilemma of whether to build a computer for gaming yourself or to buy it ready-made is as old as PC gaming itself. The four most important factors in deciding the issue are individual taste, existing skills, available funds and, last but not least, time on your hands. If you’re about to buy your first gaming PC, it can be a big headache to decide which option to choose – especially when you consider all the factors involved. There are things you absolutely need to take into account when making such a decision.
Building your own computer
Building a custom gaming PC is definitely more challenging than buying an already assembled device, especially if you have no experience with hardware components. If you do decide to go with this option, you should think about whether you will have enough time to research the topic, buy the components, and finally assemble your computer.
It’s much easier now than it used to be, with numerous articles out there on the internet filled with information to help you navigate your way towards your goal. Building the computer of your dreams yourself may be a serious task, but it yields benefits!
- It’s up to you to decide which components you’re willing to spend more on. Lets say, your gaming PC needs as powerful a graphics card as possible. You might save money on other parts then. Which ones? Opt for a less powerful processor and motherboard without extra lights, and there’s no loss on your side. Gaming puts the main load on your video card.
- You learn a lot about your PC. You’ll know the weaknesses that are worth upgrading in the first place, as soon as the extra funds appear. You will know the potential of your system even before any game is installed – no unpleasant surprises.
- You pick the externals yourself. And the externals for a good gaming PC build are really important. Backlights won’t install themselves. Feel free to add any cosmetic modifications to suit your taste.
- You may pick up a powerful cooling system. New games heat up your hardware to the boiling point. Box coolers are rarely efficient, and they’re also noisy. When building your PC you can get an efficient cooling system right away and no longer have to worry about overheating for years to come.
- You get a warranty on each part. Replacing a faulty part under warranty is much easier than when you have a warranty on your entire unit.
- You control the quality. Knowing at least the basics of compatibility of components, you can control the quality of the assembly. For example, the motherboard says that it supports 3266 MHz RAM, so you’re already smart enough not to choose 2666 MHz RAM. You can put thermal paste on the processor yourself in the right amount or, again, install the most efficient cooling for that chip. Everything is under control.
Then again, there are disadvantages too:
- Most likely, you can’t do without outside help. Do you already know how to build a gaming computer by yourself? Quite likely you don’t. Well, maybe, someone you know does. Even if you know a little bit, you still don’t know how to build it properly. You’ll have to ask a pro to help you or at least read an article or two on how to make it work.
- Risks of purchasing incompatible components. A common problem with ‘experienced’ armchair assemblers. Not sure about the compatibility of the selected parts? Free tip: use buildmypc.net to see if the parts work together.
- Time will be required. Researching specifications, market prices, and compatibility nuances, choosing and buying each part separately will take a lot of time. But the compensation will come in the form of money savings.
Buying a PC
Buying a new computer is always a good decision, especially if you do not have needed skills to build one. The point is to make the best use of your resources. Buying an already assembled gaming PC is likely to cost more than buying separate parts, as you’ll have to pay for the work of the specialists who assemble the device, check everything for compatibility and conduct testing.
But there are also a number of advantages to this option:
- Protection of your investment. The purchase price of a PC includes something more than just the parts involved – the higher price is matched by the benefit of a warranty for the whole system. If any problems emerge later, the supplier will repair the machine. Otherwise you’d have to contact some pros to repair it – for example, the Good Zone in Brooklyn. You can find out more about respective services here: https://goodzonerepairs.com.
- Matching your demands. When you buy a system that has already been assembled for you, the pros do all the work for you: finding the necessary components, checking their compatibility, turning on the PC and checking that everything works. If you’re not familiar with the world of computer parts, buying a turnkey machine can diminish stress and limit the potential of failure. And, as a gaming enthusiast, you can save yourself a lot of time by acquiring such a system.
The one significant disadvantage of getting a fully assembled PC, however, is that customization is more difficult as the manufacturer uses the parts available. Therefore, sticking to a specific design or component will not be that easy for you. However, if you have the money, you can save time this way. Buying a PC, you can be sure that it will work just fine.
You may want to start playing asap. In that case, the option of self-assembling shouldn’t even be considered. Preliminary research, getting acquainted with the components market, comparing similar items – all these stages require time. A fitting ready-made PC can be picked in about a couple of hours, while the selection of separate parts individually may take days or weeks.
The one big argument against it is the cost. Ready-made computer’s price includes the work of a qualified professional, pre-installed operating system, etc. The difference in the price between a PC assembled by you and a similar one bought in a store can be anywhere between 1/5 and 1/3. Self-assembly can be stretched over a long period: buy one part from each paycheck. This way a powerful computer will not be able to deliver a crushing blow to the budget.
Also, if you don’t know how PCs work, the warranty and its reliability can be essential in the event of a system failure. However, if you have enough time and patience to assemble everything, you will have a gaming machine tailored to your own needs and desires.