Anyone who has an understanding of how the computer case works and knows the function of each part can assemble a gaming computer. Self-assembly results in a PC that fully meets the user’s requirements.
At first glance, building a gaming computer on your own may seem very difficult. In reality, even beginners can do it, provided they strictly follow the instructions.
How to assemble a gaming computer: tools and components
If you have decided to assemble a gaming computer, you must first determine your budget. The cost is a key factor in choosing components. However, it should be noted that additional expenses await you besides the main components of the computer case.
To assemble a computer yourself, you will need a well-equipped workplace. Firstly, you will need a large, flat, well-lit surface. A computer desk would be the perfect solution. Some people prefer to assemble a PC on the floor. If you decide to do the same, be sure to remove the carpet or other textile floor coverings. Static electricity can damage sensitive components of the future computer.
In addition, you will definitely need a set of tools for servicing the PC. Such a kit can be purchased at any electronics store.
The next step is to choose the components. A standard computer system consists of 8 components, which include:
- Central Processing Unit (CPU). This element is responsible for the computer’s processing power. The CPU’s specifications directly affect the computer’s speed and performance. It is also one of the most expensive components of a computer.
- Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) or video card. A dedicated processor responsible for converting data into a format that is comfortable for the user to perceive. For a gaming computer, the GPU is as important a component as the CPU.
- Disk drives. A hard drive is responsible for storing data on a PC. The type and characteristics of the drive directly affect the overall performance of the PC. Even with a powerful processor, a “slow” hard drive can negatively affect performance. It is recommended to prefer SSD drives, as they are much faster and more durable than regular HDDs.
- Random Access Memory (RAM). Temporary memory of the PC that holds data about tasks being executed at the current moment. In games, the computer processes a vast amount of data simultaneously. Thus, to implement this process, the amount of memory should be as high as possible.
- The motherboard. This component combines the above-mentioned components into a single system. The quality of their interaction directly determines the power of the gaming computer.
- Cooling system. When working with demanding programs and games, the main components of the computer heat up. This can lead to reduced performance and the risk of damage. To prevent this, a cooling system is built into the computer case. Depending on the design, there are air and liquid cooling systems.
- Power Supply Unit (PSU). This component is responsible for providing electricity to the computer’s components. A wise choice of PSU is a very important step in the assembly process. Choosing the wrong adapter can result in damage or reduced performance.
- Case. To protect all the components of the system unit described above, they are placed in a box. It will reliably protect the PC elements from damage and other negative factors.
The cost of a assembled gaming computer depends on the chosen components. The selection of hardware components for a PC should be approached with maximum knowledge and responsibility. The main difficulty lies in the fact that components are not characterized by universal compatibility. To build a good gaming computer, each part must perform its functions 100%. This can only be achieved if all system components are fully compatible.
How to build a powerful gaming PC: step-by-step guide
Choosing the right hardware for your computer is only the first step in the process. The next step is actually assembling the PC. For those who have some knowledge of computer hardware, this stage will not be too difficult. However, if you are unsure of your abilities, it is better to use ready-made PC builds or entrust the preparation of the computer to specialists.
If you have a workspace, good lighting, and minimal skills with hand tools, you can assemble a gaming computer yourself. The main stages of this process are described in detail below. Keep in mind that the method of installing components may vary slightly. However, the general order of assembly is the same.
Step 1: Installing the CPU
Firstly, you need to unpack the motherboard. All the computer components are installed on it one by one.
In this example, the ASRock Fatal1ty B450 motherboard is being used. The package comes with a foam pad, which is recommended to be placed under the motherboard if you’re working on a table, floor, or any other hard surface.
After unpacking, the central processor needs to be installed on the motherboard. In this build, the AMD Ryzen 5 3600 AM4 six-core processor with a standard clock speed of 3.6 GHz is being used.
The socket for the processor is located in the central part of the motherboard and has a square shape. To open the locking mechanism, it is necessary to lift the side lever of the socket upwards.
The processor should be inserted into the socket. Make sure that the contacts of the processor match the socket. Then lower the lever to secure the CPU on the motherboard. The entire procedure should be done carefully to avoid damaging anything.
To continue the PC assembly, we move on to the second step: installing RAM.
Connecting RAM is generally not more difficult than installing the CPU. You can use one, two, or several RAM sticks. The maximum amount depends only on the characteristics of the motherboard and the CPU. In this build, we are using two 8GB GoodRAM IRDM Pro RAM sticks.
Special slots equipped with locking mechanism are provided on the motherboard to install RAM sticks. The locking clip is located on the side of each slot (there are 4 of them on our board). Depending on the motherboard model, the clip may be located on one or both sides of the slot. Before installing the RAM stick, the clip must be opened.
To install RAM, insert each stick into a separate slot. When the RAM is properly seated in the slot, the locking mechanism will close automatically.
Stage 3: Installing an SSD
We’ve been discussing the components necessary for building a PC, and one of the key elements we’ve noted is the hard drive. Currently, there are two main types of storage devices used for computers: solid-state drives (SSD) and hard disk drives (HDD). The former is preferable because SSDs operate faster, wear out more slowly, and are easy to install. We’ll take a look at the installation process using the example of the Silicon Power 240 GB M2 SSD.
To install an M2 interface SSD on a motherboard, a separate connector is provided. It is present on almost all modern motherboards released after 2016.
Next, you need to find this connector on the motherboard and install the memory block. Insert the SSD into the slots until it clicks into place. It should sit slightly raised.
You need to carefully press it against the motherboard and secure it using a special M2 screw. Usually, it comes in the package with the motherboard, not with the SSD itself.
Stage 4: CPU Cooling
As noted above, under heavy loads, the CPU starts to heat up. To improve heat dissipation and ensure quality cooling, thermal paste must first be applied to the processor.
After that, you can proceed to installing the cooler. In our build, we’re using the Deepcool Gammax 400 EX tower cooler.
The installation process is as follows:
- Remove the covers around the processor if they are present in the design of the motherboard. To do this, you need to unscrew them with a screwdriver.
- After that, assemble the backplate. It is attached to the back of the motherboard and serves to securely mount the cooler and protect against damage. The screw studs come out to the front of the board. Rubber pads are put on them, and then hexagonal spacers are screwed on top.
- It is recommended to apply thermal paste before installing the cooler onto the CPU to improve heat dissipation and ensure quality cooling. If thermal paste has not been applied previously, it can be applied directly before installing the cooler. The simplest way is to pour the cooling compound onto the central part of the processor cover and then press the cooler plate onto it. The paste will spread on its own. The main thing is to ensure that there is not too much paste and that it does not spread onto the motherboard.
- We remove the protective film from the cooler’s base. We put the device on the hexagonal standoffs previously attached. The base should fit snugly against the processor cover. We secure the cooler’s reinforcement plastic to the stands using spring screws.
- We put a fan on the radiator assembly attached to the motherboard. For this, spring lock mechanisms are used on the sides.
The cooler is fixed, but it won’t work until it’s connected to the motherboard. To do this, the contact cable of the cooler must be placed into the CPU_FAN 1 connector.
Stage 5: Case and Power Supply
Unpack the PC case. In our example, we are using the DeepCool Matrexx 70 ADD-RGB-3F case. If necessary, additional fans can be installed in the case. All cables responsible for connecting the lighting, fans, and computer ports must be routed out through the back of the case. This will allow for proper organization of the internal space and better airflow.
The next step is to install the power supply. It should be installed with the fan facing downwards. Attach the power supply to the case using screws with a wide head. You will need 4-6 screws, depending on the design of the case and the power supply itself.
Next, you can proceed to install the assembled motherboard. The supporting wall of the case has holes for mounting and windows for wire entry.
Next, you can proceed to install the assembled motherboard. The supporting wall of the case has holes for mounting and windows for cable entry.
The motherboard comes with a special backplate that is used to further expose the ports and connectors. The backplate is inserted into the case, and then it needs to be slightly pressed from the inside to fix it.
Then you need to place the motherboard in the case and determine the most suitable position for the mounting screws. The position of the screw holes may vary depending on the manufacturer of the case. Therefore, it is worth determining a convenient position for the motherboard in advance. Fix the mounting screws in the appropriate places. This can be done by screwing them in using pliers or by hand.
Lower the motherboard into the case while holding onto the cooler tower. It should be placed on the pre-installed mounting standoffs. Make sure that all the connectors and ports align with the openings on the I/O shield that was installed earlier.
All that’s left is to secure the motherboard inside the case. To do this, screw it in using screws with a wide head all around the perimeter.
The 6th step: Connecting cables.
The first step is to connect the fans located inside the case. This refers not to the cooler, but to the fans inside the case itself. Since there are several of them, it is recommended to use a power splitter that comes with the case.
The case fans’ cables should be connected to it. The connector of the fan splitter should be inserted into the FAN socket on the motherboard.
The next step is to connect the HD-Audio cable, which is responsible for the audio devices on the PC and is connected to a corresponding connector on the motherboard.
Similarly, cables responsible for the operation of USB ports are connected in the same way. The cable is connected to the corresponding connector on the motherboard.
The other ports and connectors are also connected to the motherboard in a similar way. This method is also used when connecting the buttons located on the front panel of the case, which are responsible for power on/off and reboot.
The connection of the CPU power supply is slightly different. For this purpose, a cable marked CPU is included in the kit.
To connect the CPU power, the cable labeled “CPU” is provided in the kit. It’s easiest to route it to the motherboard through a window in the corner. The corresponding connector for this cable is located in the same area.
After that, it is necessary to provide the motherboard with electricity. To do this, a cable with a wide 24-pin connector is used.
The connector for the 24-pin connection is usually located on the right-hand side of the motherboard. It is wide enough, so finding it after installing it in the case should not be difficult. Typically, the connector has a locking mechanism to ensure a secure fit. You need to insert the plug into the slot on the motherboard and push it in until the locking mechanism snaps into place automatically.
Step 7: Connecting the Graphics Card
Installing the GPU is the final step in building a PC. This is because if you want to build a powerful gaming computer, you will likely be using a graphics processor with its own cooling system. If you install it at the same time as the motherboard, it will be inconvenient to connect the cables to the ports and power the hardware components.
The PCI Express connector is responsible for connecting the GPU to the motherboard. It is wide enough, so finding it should be easy. Before installation, you need to push the lever to open the locking mechanism.
Insert the card into the PCI Express slot. The locking mechanism will automatically close and fix the card in place.
Finally, secure the card using screws. It is better to use a screwdriver for this. The graphics card is a relatively heavy component, so it must be securely fastened to the frame of the case.
The graphics card is powered through a PCIe cable that comes with the package.
After connecting the PC, you can close the case. The system unit is ready to use. All peripheral devices need to be connected: monitor, keyboard, and speaker system. After the first launch, BIOS setup, driver installation, and operating system installation will be required.
How much did it cost to build a gaming computer with this configuration?
The provided instructions detail the assembly of a gaming computer with good performance that can handle even the most demanding games. The table below lists the components used and their average prices.
|CPU||AMD Ryzen 5 3600 AM4, 6 x 3600 MHz||From 17,196 rub|
|Graphics Card||MSI GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER VENTUS 8GB||From 78,890 rub|
|Motherboard||ASRock Fatal1ty B450 Gaming K4||From 7,841 rub|
|RAM||GoodRAM IRDM PRO 8 GB DDR4 3600 MHz CL17||From 4,799 rub|
|SSD||Silicon Power 240 GB M.2 2280 M55 240GB||From 2,589 rub|
|Case||Deepcool Matrexx 70 ADD-RGB 3F||From 9,380 rub|
|Power Supply||Be Quiet! System Power 9 600W||From 4,690 rub|
|Cooling Fan||Deepcool Gammaxx 400 EX||From 2,346 rub|
|Additional Fans||Deepcool MF120gt||From 2,990 rub|
The total cost of building a gaming PC is almost 135,000 rubles. It’s worth noting that this is not the most expensive option available. The graphics card is the most expensive component, costing almost 80,000 rubles. Other components of the system unit are not as expensive. If you want to build a budget gaming computer, you can purchase a less powerful graphics card.
How to Build a Budget Gaming Computer?
Regardless of whether you decide to build a gaming computer or buy a pre-built one, you will face expenses. Gaming hardware costs much more than regular hardware, which is due to increased performance, improved ergonomics, and resistance to stress.
If you can’t afford to buy expensive components, you can build a gaming PC inexpensively. However, it’s worth considering that the power and performance of such a device will be lower. Therefore, you won’t be able to run all games on it without exceptions, only less demanding ones.
Building a gaming PC for 20,000 rubles
The question of how much it costs to build a gaming PC is relevant for those who want to get a powerful gaming machine without additional expenses. In reality, building a PC for 20,000 rubles is possible. However, instead of branded components from leading brands, you’ll have to use Chinese analogues. This is a good option that will help you save money, but such a build itself is less reliable. The list of components is presented below.
|CPU||Intel Xeon E5 1650 E5-1650 3.2 GHz||From 3857 rubles|
|Graphics Card||Radeon RX 470||From 14,990 rubles|
|Motherboard||Kllisre X79||From 5990 rubles|
|RAM||LANSHUO DDR3 4GB||From 923 rubles|
|Storage||Western Digital WD 240Gb Green WDS240G2G0A||From 3085 rubles|
|Cooler||ID-Cooling SE-213V2||From 990 rubles|
|Case||AeroCool Qs-240||From 2800 rubles|
|Power Supply||Winard 600WA Black 600W||From 1499 rubles|
Most of the listed parts can be purchased on the AliExpress online store. You can also look for components on classifieds boards. Since the suggested hardware is far from new, you will likely find everything you need at a reduced price.
The total cost of the build is within 25,000 rubles. The finished PC may not boast outstanding specifications, but its power will be sufficient for running demanding games on minimum settings and, in some cases, medium settings.
Building a gaming PC for 30,000 rubles
The next option cannot be called high-performance either. However, the suggested set of components will be a decent solution if you are interested in building a PC for 30k.
|CPU||Intel Core i3 10105F 3.7 GHz||From 6800 rubles|
|Graphics card||MSI GT 1030 AERO||From 7800 rubles|
|Motherboard||Gigabyte H510m H||From 5150 rubles|
|RAM||Kingston Fury Beast||From 5500 rubles|
|Storage||Western Digital WD10EZEX 1TB||From 3000 rubles|
|Cooler||DeepCool Theta 9||From 450 rubles|
|Case||Cougar Gemini M||From 3199 rubles|
|Power supply||Cougar VTE 500||From 2800 rubles|
The proposed option will be optimal for several reasons. First of all, it’s the cost, of course. The system unit will cost slightly more than 30,000 rubles. At the same time, the quality of the components is much higher than in the previous build.
Another important advantage is the wide upgrade options. Over time, you can replace the processor or video card with a newer one without changing the motherboard and memory modules.
In terms of performance, the assembled PC does not claim a leading position. Nevertheless, it is powerful enough to run GTA 5, Fallout 4, CS GO, and other demanding games.
Building a gaming computer for 40,000 rubles
By increasing the available budget by 10,000 rubles, you can build a decent gaming computer. The advantage of this build is that it uses only original branded parts. You won’t have to look for components on Aliexpress or other stores.
The 40k PC build also has improved technical specifications. This provides the ability to run demanding games with higher system settings.
|CPU||AMD Ryzen 5 3400 G||From 17,879 rubles|
|Motherboard||Asus Prime B450-M-K||From 4,799 rubles|
|RAM||GoodRAM IRDM X 16GB||From 7,499 rubles|
|SSD||A-Data XPG SX6000 Lite||From 2,199 rubles|
|HDD||Western Digital WD10EZEX 1TB||From 3,000 rubles|
|Power Supply||Cougar VTE 600||From 3,899 rubles|
|Case||Aercool KLAW||From 5,799 rubles|
If you have carefully studied what is needed to assemble a gaming computer, you probably noticed that the list does not include a video card and a cooler. The thing is, the CPU cooling is done by the built-in air cooling system. Also, the processor has integrated graphics. Therefore, there is no need to purchase and install a video card.
Building a gaming computer for 50,000 rubles
A computer for 50,000 rubles is the optimal option for most users. For such an amount, you can purchase quality components and assemble a fairly powerful PC that will differ little from expensive models. Building a PC for 50k is the perfect combination of price and quality. The device is much better than ultra-budget models, but the cost is not much higher.
|ЦПУ||Intel Core i3 10100F Quad core||От 7700 руб.|
|Видеокарта||PALIT GTX 1650 Gaming Pro||От 23 000 руб.|
|Материнская плата||ASRock H470M-HDV||От 5050 руб.|
|ОЗУ||GoodRam Iridium||От 6500 руб.|
|HDD||Western Digital WD10EZEX 1TB||От 3000 руб.|
|SSD||A-Data SU650||От 2550 руб.|
|Корпус||DeepCool Matrexx 30||От 2400 руб.|
|Блок питания||FSP PNR Pro 500W||От 3400 руб.|
A cooler is not included in this build because it comes with the video card. There are also one additional fan each installed at the front and back of the case.
The final cost is about 53,000 rubles. This build is perfect for future upgrades.
How to assemble a gaming computer online?
If you are having trouble selecting components, you can use a web-based configurator. This is a special service for assembling a PC online.
Such a tool is quite convenient for several reasons:
- You don’t need to monitor prices yourself;
- In the configurator, you can select components without compatibility errors;
- You can assemble a PC that strictly meets your requirements.
Online configurators are available in major electronics stores. Also, assembly simulators are used as calculators. With their help, you can accurately determine the cost of a ready-made computer, taking into account auxiliary materials and component installation.
Is it more profitable to build a gaming computer yourself than to buy it in a store?
One of the main questions that interests almost everyone who has decided to build a gaming computer on their own is how profitable it is. Is it really cheaper to do it yourself or is it better to buy a ready-to-use system unit.
It can be confidently stated that self-built gaming computers are cheaper than ready-made ones from stores. This is easy to verify by comparing the cost of a self-built computer and the sum of its components purchased separately. On average, the cost of such a PC will be 15-20% lower. If you can buy components on sale, you can save even more.
Other advantages of DIY assembly include:
- minimization of risks associated with defects and factory defects;
- the ability to assemble any type of computer system;
- the ability to use parts from an old PC;
- the ability to make changes to the configuration at any convenient time.
However, there are also disadvantages. Self-assembly requires a lot of time to order components. If the components are not selected correctly, the entire responsibility lies solely on the assembler. No one will compensate for the cost of a damaged part.
Some people build gaming PCs for resale or on-demand. This type of earning is ideal for those who love computers and can spend days installing hardware components and further system setup. Ready-made assemblies can be sold through online stores, bulletin boards, or social media pages.
Building a gaming computer is not as difficult as it may seem at first glance. It does not require special education or experience. Only a minimum amount of knowledge about PC devices and the ability to use a screwdriver are needed.
You have learned what is needed to build a gaming computer yourself. The main task for the assembler is to select the optimal set of components. To end up with a high-performance system, they must be maximally compatible. The cost depends on the characteristics of the selected components. A computer can be assembled even with a minimal budget. However, if you want a high-performance PC, it is better to purchase more expensive parts. It is possible to invest in a computer for 40-50 thousand rubles.