How to Build a Desktop Computer

How to Build a Desktop Computer: Step By Step Guide For Beginners

One of the most important and present instruments of technology, humans have created computers. Ever since the creation of the first computer back in 1943, its evolution has never slowed down. One of the many words that go in parallel with technology is ‘reinvention.’ The bettering of this area is a constant that seems to improve on less than a yearly basis.

Computers have managed to become smaller, thinner, and even more attractive. Likewise, humans have become ever more capable of controlling, creating, and installing computer-related THINGS. With these advancements, curiosity hasn’t failed to strike. Incredibly, we have managed to even create a desktop computer in the comfort of our living room. Having said this, making such a fantastic piece of technology takes time and knowledge; it isn’t easy.

Fortunately, this article will give important information providing you, the reader, with great content. The knowledge on how to build a desktop computer will feel much more present within you!

Firstly, What Do You Need?

The creating of your very own computer might sound fascinating but maybe even a little scary. The truth is, once you have all the suitable materials, all that you need is patience and a steady hand.

If you’re reading, the most probable scenario is that maybe you aren’t too sure exactly what it is you need. No need to worry; this section will provide you with the main components you will buy separately to make a desktop. Continuing with what was said above, many excellent websites can assist you with such a process.

One of the most reliable and friendly websites is PCPartPicker. It guides you step by step with everything you need to achieve a running and reliable computer. Take into account precisely what you’re going to be using your computer for since there’s a big difference between a gaming computer and a home office one.

Once you’ve decided what you’re looking for and are eager to start building, it’s time to think about the components. Knowing about this involves extensive research; luckily, it will all be in the section below, so pay close attention!

Something worth mentioning is that there is a shortage of PC parts on a global scale. Don’t let this frighten or discourage you, though! It won’t be long before things get back on track.

Some Essential Components for Desktop Building

As previously mentioned, building a desktop computer is no piece of cake. It takes time, effort, and a lot of dedication. One of the ideal goals of this entire article is to provide you with the proper information to know how to build a desktop computer.

Motherboard  

The Motherboard is one of the essential elements in a computer. Almost every component goes past the Motherboard, and therefore, it is necessary to have one that won’t let you down. If you’re having trouble putting it into perspective, look at it as if it was like a highway. Everybody needs a highway and will use it at one point or another!

No motherboard is the same, although they all do achieve similar results. You need to investigate and find out which Motherboard is the best for your needs. Also, You might be asking yourself: Which is the Best Motherboard for me? You will find the answer by knowing which type of socket it has.

It is safe to say that once you’ve realized which Motherboard is best suited for you, the process of construction will become much easier!

Power Supply (PSU)

You guessed it. The Power Supply is as straightforward as the name of the component, the supplier of power. It is a little box that provides power to every component. The more power you have, the quicker your PC will be. Therefore, if you know you’re looking for a rapid computer, you will need a robust power supply.

It is essential to always have a little more power than you need, just in case. You’ll be better off with extra power that doesn’t have to be used than requiring more power and not producing it with your current power supply!

Be warned that power supplies are becoming more difficult to find. If you do happen to get your hands on one, know that it won’t be a cheap part!

Some of the most recommended power supplies currently in the market are:

  • EVGA SuperNOVA 750 GA Power Supply
  • NZXT E850-Watt Power Supply
  • EVGA SuperNOVA 1,000-Watt Power Supply

None of those power supplies previously mentioned will fail you. They all provide the user with more than enough power to achieve more than extreme tasks.

Storage

Don’t stress too much about your storage. Make sure to have a good amount of storage available. If this isn’t the case, later on, you can add more with relative ease.

Your storage is where all your files, images, videos, and essential information will be.

One of the most important things you need in a computer is having anything and everything you need storing without any issue.

The price range in storage varies; make sure to find a product that suits your budget and needs. Some of the suggested hardware includes:

  • WD Blue- 1-TB Internal SSD
  • Samsung 980 Pro M.2 SSD
  • Samsung 970 Evo M.2 SSD
  • WD Black 1-TB M.2 SSD
  • Corsair MP600 M.2 SSD

As mentioned before, some of the storages have more space than others, therefore a price increase. Paying a little extra for more could end up being essential, so watch out!

Memory (RAM)

You might be saying to yourself, hold on, isn’t memory and storage the same thing? Surprisingly, although very similar, they are also very different. Continue reading to find out why.

As you can probably already know, the building of a desktop computer can be confusing. Continuing with the dispute between memory and storage, the difference is that memory is short-term.

It’s a temporary location where you can find some of the information you have recently been working with. Although it may not sound that important, it is. The software uses memory to cache (temporarily store) data to retrieve it at a moment’s notice.

Some of the most recommended memories to go with when building your very own PC include:

  • Corsair Vengeance LPX 16-GB 288-Pin RAM
  • G.Skill Ripjaws V Series 32-GB 288-Pin RAM
  • Corsair Dominator Platinum 64-GB 288-Pin RAM

For example, if you’re a gamer, you might want to look into buying the last option provided above. As mentioned at the start of this section, it depends on what use you’ll give your computer.

Processor (CPU)

The processor is the brain behind your computer. It has a direct connection to the Motherboard and, in other words, is the most critical component of your PC.

Having said this, it doesn’t necessarily mean your CPU has to be the most expensive item. A few of the processors that you should add to your shortlist include:

  • AMD Ryzen 3 3200G 4-Core 3.6 GHz
  • Intel Core i5-11400 6-Core 2.6 GHz
  • Core i7-10700K 8-Core 3.8 GHz
  • Intel Core i9- 11900K 8-Core 3.5 GHz

You will probably be well off with an i5 processor if you use your computer for everyday tasks. Anything more than this is best for ‘heavy duty’ tasks.

Graphics Card (GPU)

If you are building this computer for the sole purpose of gaming, know that you will need a graphic card. Even if this is not the case, a graphic card is required for many other purposes.

Some of these may include video and photo editing as well as any other graphics-intensive tasks. So, even if you’re the occasional gamer, you will still need one.

Have a look at the first two graphic card options if you don’t want to break your bank account. On the other hand, if money isn’t a worry, choose one of the last two mentioned. They might be a little more expensive, but with price comes excellence.

  • GeForce GTX 1660
  • Radeon RX 570
  • GeForce RTX 2060
  • Asus ROG Strix RTX 3060

Case

The last item that will be discussed in this section of the article will be the case. The case is what holds everything together. There are many to choose from so make you choose one that you like. Also, make sure that your Motherboard fits in the case you buy. This is a mistake that occurs quite frequently and can easily be avoided!

Two cases you should look into if you aren’t familiar with any in particular include:

  • Corsair Obsidian Series ATX Full Tower
  • NZXT H710i ATX Mid-Tower

These two are great durable options that won’t let you down guaranteed.

The components you buy entirely depend on your budget. No need to worry though, cheaper doesn’t necessarily mean worse. Make sure you’re buying quality that is built to last. Lastly, if any of this information feels overwhelming, seeking professional assistance will put you at ease. Give it your best!

Related Topic: Best Desktop Computer Under $500 In 2021

Connect These Components All Together

Continuing with the informative article, we will be going over recommended ways of installation in this section.

1. Installing Motherboard

It is known that installing your Motherboard is quite fun. Having said this, it is also one of the most challenging tasks you will encounter in your project. These are the items you will need before you begin:

  • #2 Philips-head screwdriver
  • Needle-nosed pliers
  • Anti-static wrist wrap

Place your case on the surface you will be working at; once this is done, make sure the door is facing you. Maintain the compartment door open.

Now, find the standoffs/spacers that come with the case and put them aside. These are made to keep the Motherboard safe, and sound and its primary purpose are to avoid a short circuit!

The next step is to find the screw holes and find the equivalent holes on your Motherboard. Now is when we use the previously mentioned standoffs. Attach them in-between your Motherboard and the opposite surface.

Lastly, all that is left to do is tighten each screw. Make sure not to tighten too hard, though, as it isn’t necessary and could end up damaging any of the items.

Once you are done with the Motherboard, you can continue with the rest of the components.

2. Installing Power Supply

Installing the power supply in what will be your new computer is relatively easy. Take a look at the top of your case. The most probable scenario is that there will be a bracket on top where the power supply is. Here, you will find a few screws provided to mount in place.

Next, as stated by Instructible Circuits, “You may then connect the main power, a 20 or 24-pin plug, into the motherboard. There may be an additional four or eight-pin power lead that needs to be plugged”. 

3. Installing Storage

When it comes to storage: “Find an empty in the front-facing part of your case. Slide your drive in and screw into place. If you have an M.2 drive, there should be a place on the motherboard where you slot it indirectly” as stated by Wired.

4. Installing Memory

Installing the memory will be the easiest thing to do in your project build. All you have to do is line up your sticks of RAM and slot them into the vertical sockets beside the CPU. If you’ve done this step correctly, they will lock into place and feel secure.

5. Installing Processor (CPU)

This is the most challenging task, so be ready and focused. Firstly, you will need to make sure that the processor locket is open. Once this is done, find the golden triangle on your processor and align it with the same symbol on your Motherboard’s processor socket.

You will feel that it fits correctly; it shouldn’t be forced. Continuing, grab your thermal paste and apply it in the shiny square of silicon. Lastly, use the heat sink directly on top of the processor. The silicon square and the copper circle should be lining up perfectly.

6. Installing Graphics Card

By now, you might realize that space inside the case is getting tight. No need to worry; this is how it’s meant to look.

To install the graphics card, you have to identify the back of your GPU, line it up with the back of your case, and push the GPU into the horizontal slot.

Like all the other items mentioned, it should feel like it’s at the correct place and should slot right in. If this isn’t the case, try again until it’s adequately fitted.

After finishing up this section, you must look at the cables coming out of the power supply. A few of those have to be inserted into the side of your GPU, so make sure to connect them correctly.

7. Ribbon Cables

The ribbon cables are pretty peculiar as they vary quite a bit between computers. All you have to make sure is that the Motherboard is connected to all your devices.

You will have to connect the PSU to the SSD and the Motherboard. Once this is done, you will have to plug the Motherboard into the case. This depends on the items you choose to buy; do not leave any cables dangling inside the case.

8. Installing the Operating System

Once you are done with everything, your new computer will have come to life. If this is the case, congratulations, pat yourself on the back. If this is your first, I recommend you to install windows as your operating system. This is super easy; all you have to do is follow the onscreen instructions, and you’ll be enjoying your new computer in no time.

If your computer didn’t decide to start up after following each step carefully, do not stress. This is quite a common occurrence and can happen to anyone. Just make sure to go over every step again, make sure every cable is okay, and there is nothing loose. Suppose you’re not able to achieve success. In that case, it is best to call a professional to have a second opinion and a little help.

9. Finishing Up

You’re done! Make sure to enjoy your computer, take care of it, and keep it well maintained! The products throughout the article are built to last, so make sure to enjoy them every step of the way.

The Bottom Line 

Making a computer from scratch can be an incredible experience. You might save money and even make yourself a better product than the ones that are factory sold. Knowing how to build a computer isn’t for everyone, that is why close attention should be given at all times for the best result. In short, by paying close to the steps above and also the products, you will be all set to enjoy a new and excellent computer. Whether for gaming, working, or simply having as a backup- you will feel rewarded once it’s completed, so don’t be scared to try!

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