Your Essential Guide to Custom Gaming PCs
A custom gaming computer is one that you build yourself. The shift from pre-built PCs to custom-builds has been immense in the last couple of years. This is because you can easily save hundreds of dollars by building your rig.
Sure, you might not get the fancy case or shiny LED lighting of pre-built models, but you can install your own custom water cooling loops and overclock your processor to eke out the maximum performance for your budget.
Unlike a pre-built PC, you can also easily upgrade and swap components in and out of your gaming PC, with the only real limitations being your budget and your imagination. Of course, there’s also great satisfaction that comes from this.
What’s so Good About Custom Gaming PCs?
The first reason is quite apparent: you can save a ton of money by building your machine. Gaming computers are expensive, so anything that lets you spend less to get the same performance is excellent for gamers. Custom gaming PCs also offer unparalleled flexibility, allowing you to tailor your computer to your exact needs.
Main parts of building your custom PC
The operating system is the software that lets you interact with your PC. You will need a proper Windows, Mac, or Linux license to install an OS on a machine. There’s also SteamOS, which is backed by Valve and is pure gaming bliss wrapped in a shiny package.
Choosing between Windows 10 and Linux is understanding what you’re going for – a gaming PC or a workstation. If you’re leaning towards the former, go with Windows 10.
The random access memory (RAM) is a scratchpad for your computer. As you open and close programs, your RAM gets used up, and when it’s all out, your computer will slow down. The RAM you need depends on the tasks you want to run simultaneously and the resolution and quality settings. Intel CPUs usually have integrated graphics in the CPU itself, but if you’re going to game on your PC, you’ll need a dedicated graphics card.
Intel Core i7 vs. Intel Core i9
Choosing between the two is dependent on what you’re planning to do with it. The Core i7 is more suitable for gaming machines because it has an excellent single-core performance, while the Core i9 has a superior multi-core performance.
The graphics processing unit (GPU) is the hardware that allows your computer to process game visuals. Intel’s HD graphic chips are adequate for casual gamers and CAD designers, but if you want to game at decent frame rates, you’ll need a dedicated graphics card.
The CPU is the brain of your computer; it’s where all the calculations happen before they are passed on to the GPU to be turned into pixels which you can see on your monitor. AMD Ryzen 5 vs. Intel Core i5 processors are competent CPUs and will not hinder your gaming performance.
Hard disks and solid-state drives (SSD) function as storage for your computer. While the hard disk is cheaper, they’re slower than SSDs. Having at least a 1TB HDD will give you plenty of space to store files such as games, movies, and music on your PC.
Gaming PCs require excellent graphics cards, and there are two kinds of them- dedicated graphics cards (dGPUs) and more efficient integrated graphics (iGPU). The latter is usually found on Intel Core i5 or Core i7 processors, while dGPUs are separate units that fit into their own sockets.
When you overclock your gaming PC, the heat inside the computer rises rapidly, which may cause crashes and damage to your components. You can avoid this by investing in a separate CPU cooler which will cool down your processor and protect it from damage.
It’s best not to skimp on your budget when purchasing parts for your custom-built computer, as it could lead to many problems down the line. Ensure that you buy reliable parts from a reputable brand and stick to your budget.
Custom-built PCs need a case that allows you to fit all your parts into it without blocking airflow. It’s best to invest in a good quality computer case as they’re not particularly expensive and will ensure the longevity of your PC.
Tweak Your PC’s Performance to Boost Game Frame Rates
If you’re looking for the best gaming experience, tweaking your computer’s settings can increase game frame rates quite quickly. Here are some easy steps to get the most out of your money.
There are various custom gaming computers, including pre-made towers and pre-built laptops. If you’re on a tight budget, it’s best to buy a pre-made building and upgrade the parts yourself.