Building Your Computer From the Barebones

By: lee jones

I first want to congratulate you for taking the first step towards building your own computer. What took you so long? It's not difficult at all, but there are a few things you need to be aware of. Here's the barebones on what you need to be thinking about before you go rushing out to the store and buying computer parts.

There are a couple of questions you need to ask yourself when building your own computer. The first and most important question you need to ask yourself is:

What do you ultimately want your computer to do? You may want a computer that will allow your children to do basic word processing functions for homework and internet surfing for research and instant messaging for communications. You might just as well want a computer to handle extensive video editing projects or maybe you are in to serious computer gaming. The point is, by answering this question, you can begin to focus specifically on what type of parts best meet the needs of your project. It will also answer the next question you need to ask yourself.

Do you need to build a high or low end computer? If you need a computer to do basic computing functions, I recommend you buy parts geared towards building a low-end computer. You may want to get a dual-core processor (CPU) instead of a quad-core. You won't need as much memory. A good 1GB will be more than enough. By following these two examples you will have already saved yourself over a hundred dollars. On the flip side, in building a high-end gaming computer, you not only want power, but beauty as well. Instead of a plain computer case, you might want to buy a case with Plexiglas siding, to show off your innards.

Great, that's taken care of. Now I am going to answer a question that may have entered your mind at some point in your thought process about building a computer. You are probably wondering where to buy the parts for the computer at? I suggest, unless you have a computer super store in your area, buying your components online. This is your best bet at finding a variety of options at competitive pricing. I've gathered a pretty extensive list of computer parts and electronic online stores that offer great prices at

Ok, you've figured out what you want your computer to do and what type you need to build and where to buy the parts. You are well on your way to building your computer. Now you need to know what to buy. This step takes a little bit of research if you are planning on buying every part individually. One alternative and an excellent one I might add for novice builders is to buy a barebones system. This will take the guesswork out of parts compatibility. A good one for starters will be one that has the PC case with power supply, the motherboard, the hard drive, the CPU, the memory and the video and sound cards if needed. Keep in mind, the lower the cost (for the most part), the lower the performance.

The first computer I built took a long time, not because it was hard to put together, but because I kept buying incompatible parts. The CPU was not compatible with the motherboard. The voltage in my memory was too powerful for the motherboard to interpret it. My hard drive was 150 instead of the needed 300. I'm not getting into great detail of what all these compatibility issues actually are, because I really suggest that you start off with a barebones system. This way you can focus on the build instead of the frustration of compatibility.

So there you have it. Start off by asking yourself a few questions. Check out the site for the different online stores. Finally, try barebones systems to eliminate compatibility issues. Happy building.

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