How to Build a PC: Hardware Suggestions, Instructions, and More

If you have been beating your self up about doing nothing productive throughout our unending pandemic, cease. Sometimes nothing is precisely what you want. Other occasions, it’s good to make one thing with your personal arms. That’s what this information is about: how to construct a PC from scratch.

It might be daunting for a lot of causes—it’s costly, it’s complicated, it can get messy. But I need to be clear: If you may construct an Ikea desk, bookshelf, mattress, or something that is available in greater than a kind of deceivingly heavy flat packs, you may construct a PC. The tough half? I am unable to inform you how to construct your PC. Not actually. Not until I do know precisely which {hardware} you are utilizing. I can, nevertheless, clarify what every element does and what my suggestions are for every class. 

Once you’ve constructed your shiny new PC, it may be time to take a look at another stuff to additional decorate your new accomplice in crime. Be certain to have a have a look at our guides for the best gaming keyboards, best gaming mice, best gaming headsets, and best gaming controllers

Updated October 2021: We’ve added new {hardware} within the motherboard, storage, case, and cooler classes, and up to date shopping for recommendation. 

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What Do You Need?

No matter what your expertise stage is, it is best to use PCPartPicker. It not solely has all the things you want to purchase, it additionally enables you to construct your PC piece by piece proper on the web site, ensuring all of your {hardware} will play properly collectively. It even has a few instance builds you may tweak to your liking.

Regardless of what sort of PC you’re constructing (home office or gaming), the elements you want are going to be the identical. You’ll want a motherboard, a  central processing unit (CPU), storage, reminiscence, a energy provide, a case, and a monitor. The solely factor you may not want when you’re principally utilizing this PC for home-office duties is a GPU (graphics processing unit), nevertheless it’s obligatory for photograph or video modifying and gaming. That’s a lot of stuff, so what follows is a little breakdown of what every element does, together with some {hardware} suggestions. 

Before diving in, it is best to know that there’s a worldwide shortage of PC components right now, significantly with graphics playing cards, and costs total preserve rising. If components aren’t obtainable, the perfect recommendation we can provide is to wait. Things will ultimately get again to regular. 


Every different element plugs into this circuit board. It’s the freeway they use to talk and collaborate. They come in several sizes and configurations, and every one seems a little totally different, however all of them fill the identical perform. One factor to look out for: Make certain you already know which processor you need to go along with before you purchase a motherboard. 

Motherboards are available a couple of flavors, however a very powerful factor to know is what sort of socket it has. There are mainly two: LGA and AM. You’ll all the time see them listed with a quantity after them, like “LGA1150” or “AM3.” The precise numbers after the LGA and AM parts of those socket names will change over time, to point out which era of Intel or AMD chips they help, however the present requirements as of 2021 (which can work with the newest chips from both maker) are LGA1200 for Intel and AM4 for AMD. 

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