Parts needed to build a PC
It is crucial you pick the case first as not all components be compatible. With so many choices you are wondering how to know? Try pcpartpicker.com; This site gives you the ability to see if any parts are not compatible with the choices you have made to put into the case. Great for first time buyers and long time builders.
#2 processor (cpu)
The CPU allows the computer to run mathematical equations, programs and is the main component when it comes to speed of the computer. Two of the biggest chip makers are AMD and Intel. Deciding which brand can come down to how fast you need the computer and what price you are willing to pay. The more cores and threads the better the performance, especially if you are going to be gaming. These CPU’s can include an integrated GPU that would be enough for any light usage. Still, getting a graphics card is a good idea with technology advancing so quickly.
#3 GPU (Graphics Processing Unit)
The GPU processes video and images. It allows the user to play high definition and 4K on the monitor.
RAM lets the computer run multiple processes at once. Example including having multiple tabs or windows open. You want to look for at least 8 GB and up to 64 GB for most computers. Some customized computers have 128 GB. For simple computer tasks 8 GB will be plenty.
The motherboard is like an electric company. It is there to supply power to the electrical components that are connected. This also provides a pathway to the other components that are connected which allows them to communicate. Among the different types are
- Advanced Technology Extended (ATX) which is the largest and used for desktops (12″ * 9.6″ or 30.5 * 24.4 cm)
- Micro Advanced Technology Extended (mATX) is the smaller version still used for desktops (9.6″ * 9.6″ or 24.4 * 24.4 cm)
- ITX s reserved for small computers (6.7″ * 6.7″ or 17 * 17 cm)
- Nano-ITX which is used in entertainment computers (4.7″ by 4.7″ or 11.94 * 11.94 cm)
- Pico-ITX is for use in extremely small devices (3.9″ * 2.8″ or 3.9 * 7.1 cm)
#6 Hard drive
Hard drives come in different types and sizes. In the picture above, this shows the older hard disk drive with moving components. These are good for about 5 to 10 years before needing replacement. Another option is solid state drives which are much less prone to losing data with the removal of the spinning drive inside. With the upgrade to solid state the prices can become expensive as a downside. Otherwise performance is great, much faster!
Fans or water cooling? Depends how much power you will run through your computer. If looking to game water cooling may be right down your alley. Otherwise getting a couple fans will work. Remember to clean the fan once a month with some compressed air to keep the airflow blowing.
#8 Power supply unit
Looking for how much wattage you need? The higher the better as it wont always be pulling the 500 Watts the power supply can handle. Depending how much power you are pulling, if you don’t get a big enough power supply the computer may either not run or end up shorting.
#9 Operating System
Windows? Linux? iOS? These are 3 of the main operating systems out on the market today. Windows and iOS is more user friendly vs Linux. Linux is open source, which means developers from all over are allowed to work on the code to improve it for the users. Being proprietary, Windows is controlled by Microsoft. Same goes for iOS and Apple.
#10 Optical Drive (Optional)
Completely optional in today’s world. Most people use USB instead of CD’s for software now. If you still like to burn DVD’s and CD’s this is a necessity.