Build or buy?

Computer questions, Gaming systems, TV's and anything electronic can go here.
User avatar
Posts: 269
Joined: 19 May 2010, 09:11
Location: Wyoming, MN

Build or buy?

Post by breachless »

zeedogg wrote:asus 55 sabretooth i think is the one i built last year? i forget which one. but i always build asus mobo's
I second this: I have always used Asus for my Motherboards. I actually JUST finished building a pretty sweet gaming setup early this summer that I am completely and totally in love with.

My suggestion is to pick what's important. I put the Sandy Bridge i5 CPU in and it's fantastic. Check out the specs to see how it compares, but I like it because it's crazy fast for the price, and it runs cool. Get the unlocked version and you could easily overclock it to i7 speeds (though it's really not necessary). Do NOT skimp on your power supply. Get a 750 watt or better, and get a good one (budget power supplies will ruin your day more than once if you are using them to power something like a gaming rig).

Here is a list of the stuff I built mine with. You don't have to go quite as overboard on some of the stuff I did, but it's a good baseline:

Here is the case I chose. The Video Card BARELY fits, but I like it because it looks neat, has good cable management, and if you felt how heavy the pc is when it's done, the handle is nice if you ever have to move it. I also like the location of the USB ports on the front: nice and easy to access if it sits on the floor: ... 6811119196

This is the motherboard I picked. I like it because it allows me to run my RAM at higher speeds than what is considered stock, and it supports SATA3: ... 6813131705

For the Video Card, I went with this and I can't tell you how much I love this thing. It's spendy, but it's about as good as it gets for a single GPU setup: ... 6814130590

Here is the Power supply. I picked this one for the modular hookups so I don't have a bunch of unused cables mucking up my case and preventing good airflow: ... 6817139011

And here is the processor: ... 6819115072

I also elected to grab this since the stock coolers with CPU's tend to be a joke (and a loud joke at that...) It keeps the i5 nice and cool, and easily enables overclocking if I want it... ... 6835103099

This is what I used for RAM. I actually bought two of these kits for a total of 16 GB (TOTAL overkill, but for the price, I thought why not. Plus, it runs at 1600 MHz, which is supported natively with the Motherboard I bought: no overclocking necessary): ... 6820231428

Finally, I went with a 1 TB Western Digital HDD that I had laying around for storage, and then I threw this 120 GB SSD drive in for the OS install (since again, my motherboard supports SATA3 speeds): ... 6820227706

Keep in mind though: not long after building this PC, we had a lot of PC's at work with the cheaper OCZ SSD drives experience frequent problems. If I could do it all over again, I would get an Intel SSD instead. More spendy, but they seem more reliable. I have had no issues with my OCZ drive yet, and it IS blazing fast, but I never stop worrying about it going bad on me...

I elected to just go with a regular DVD drive. The details aren't important enough to list on here. Any drive will do.

Added up on Newegg, it still comes out under $1500 (I bought some parts from Microcenter for cheaper than Newegg, and I got others during sales with Newegg and Amazon so I probably paid closer to $1300 in the end).

I can tell you it's a fast PC, and I have yet to find anything that really seems to make it work very hard. All the newest games will run at high settings with 1080p resolutions, and it should stay good for at least awhile. At some point when the price comes down I may buy a second GTX580 to run SLI, but I don't see a need for that for awhile. I hope some of that helps, and if you want help, just ask!

Posts: 2
Joined: 02 Aug 2012, 04:20

Build or buy?

Post by kingdavid2012 »

Built it yourself if you have the time and energy!

There are guild books on this stuff available on the net.I have many links myself but have no access to it for time being.

Resort to experts in this field whenever you run into trouble.

User avatar
Posts: 11
Joined: 29 Jul 2016, 16:54

Build or buy?

Post by WaltR »

It largely depends on what you want to do. I can usually find a prebuilt basic system for less or close to what it would cost to buy myself. I just concern myself with key specs and shop and compare. One advantage to buy is that you have one warranty if something goes wrong.

I've only built my own for special purposes like when I built my virtualization lab. My problem with build your own is choosing all the components. A good bare bones kit is good if you want a good base without having to make a lot of decisions. I did that for the A+ class I taught for Delaware Tech. The cost was a bit more than a cheap retail box, but standard components, and can keep upgrading components forever. Just go with an ATX or mini ATX motherboard and a mid tower case and your options should be pretty wide.

New Egg and Amazon reviews are helpful. I've bought most of my components from New Egg over the year.
Walt R
Murphy was an optimist
'98 14' Lowe Ranger with 18 hp Johnson FD-19

User avatar
Posts: 1739
Joined: 20 Aug 2010, 14:46
Location: Halifax, Virginia

Build or buy?

Post by RiverBottomOutdoors »

Would you build your own TV, even if you could? That's how I answer that question when someone asks be should they build or buy. Computers are a commodity now. Buy one, use for a few years...throw it away and buy another one.

User avatar
Posts: 5085
Joined: 27 Nov 2010, 09:36
Location: Houston, TX & Crossville, TN

Build or buy?

Post by richg99 »

Isn't this, mostly, a 2011 post? I'll bet some of the suggestions made on the first page are antiques now.


Posts: 2933
Joined: 19 Jan 2012, 07:44
Location: Northeast Arkansas

Build or buy?

Post by JMichael »

richg99 wrote:Isn't this, mostly, a 2011 post? I'll bet some of the suggestions made on the first page are antiques now.

Went back and looked at the first page again, and I'd say it's all still pretty applicable. There's better and faster processors out now and solid state drives and such, but the advice would still be the same I think.

User avatar
Posts: 259
Joined: 12 Oct 2015, 20:13
Location: Ohio

Build or buy?

Post by Fire1386 »

Building your own computer has advantages and disadvantages. If you enjoy the challenge, try building one. Some like to build their own fishing rods, some don't. Some like to find boats in bad shape and bring them back to life, some just like to buy ones already rebuilt or new ones......:)