Several people now opt to build their own computer so that they are more in control of the specifications they want and save more than just a few pounds. There are a multitude of DIY’s found all over the Internet, and yes, it is possible to build one yourself! But before doing so, you must choose the right components for your computer. Here are some of the very basic components you need to get:
Computer Case: Computer cases now come in a variety of designs and colours. Some now even come with a panel window where you can see the inside parts through. What is important when buying a case is that the size of the case should support the size of the motherboard. A mid-tower case is highly recommended as it has enough room for all the hardware.
Power Supply: The power supply must provide you at least 300 watts and fit right into the computer case you choose. If you are one of those whoever extreme users or gamers, you may want to buy a bigger power supply to feed additional cooling, USB devices and case lighting.
Processor: The processor is the most important choice you need to make in setting up your own computer. You have to know exactly what kind and how fast you need. There are a variety of options from AMD and Intel, for example: AMD Athlon, AMD Sempron, AMD Duron, Intel Celeron, Intel Core Duo, among others. If you only use the computer to surf the web, do word processing, gaming and some graphics editing, the 1.8 GHz – 2.0 GHz might be enough. Extreme gaming, 3D rendering and video editing would need at least a 2.4GHz processor.
CPU Cooler: Processors usually come with a fan and a heat sink. But it is best to get a cooler that is more efficient and quieter than the one included in the package. Remember to get a thermal compound to put onto the CPU core.
Motherboard: Choose a motherboard that matches your processor’s socket type and supports the same bus speed as the CPU.
RAM: Similarly, choose a RAM that is compatible with the motherboard’s bus speed. Get at least 512MB of RAM.
Hard Disk Drive (HDD): The HDD is your permanent storage for system files, applications, documents, games and so on. Get the largest hard drive capacity that you can afford. If you are on a tight budget, you can get at least a 60GB. Most motherboards have IDE slots for hard drives. Newer ones also have SATA connectors for SATA HDDs, which are quite faster than IDE HDDs.
Graphics Card: If you use the computer for regular office work, you can get a motherboard with a built-in video card. If you use it for gaming, you might want to buy a separate video card. Video cards usually use an AGP slot or a PCI Express slot on the motherboard.
Sound Card: Most motherboards have built-in sound cards which generally have good quality. If you use sound mixing or audio/video editing, you can get at least a 24-bit sound card for better quality.
CD/DVD: Of optical drives, it is best to seek for a DVD/CD-RW combo or a DVDRW; the latter is a better choice. DVDs have larger capacity to allow you to store more music and movie files and back-up data. If you do not expect to burn disks, you can opt for a CD-R or a DVD-R drive.