How to Build a Gaming PC That Plays the Latest Games – MUO – MakeUseOf

Believe it or not, you can build your own gaming PC that plays the latest games. This guide will show you how.
For a newbie, building a gaming PC may seem like a daunting process. And the truth is that yes, there is some hard work involved. The primary questions you may have could include: what parts do you need to build a PC, and what is the actual build process?
Whether you're looking to build a beginner gaming PC or a high-end rig, this article will answer most of the questions that you may have.
Choosing the right parts is essential before you build a gaming PC. It's easy to fall into the trap of buying the most expensive core components, such as the central processing unit (CPU) or graphics processing unit (GPU)—at the cost of neglecting components like the random access memory (RAM) or power supply unit (PSU).
To make the process easier, here is a list of the core components, and how to choose the correct options according to your needs.
At the core of your gaming PC build lies the CPU. It is likely to be the most expensive component of your computer, after the GPU. Thus, it's important to choose the right one. If you don't plan on upgrading your PC for at least 3-5 years after the build, it may be worth investing in an expensive CPU since it will future-proof your computer.
In a gaming PC, the graphics card arguably plays the most important role when it comes to gaming performance. Always try to go for the best graphics card you can afford, ideally from the latest lineup of GPUs from either NVIDIA or AMD.
The motherboard is where all the components are housed and connected to each other. This is where most compatibility issues occur, as some motherboards may not support your shortlisted GPU or RAM.
Double-check all the ports and connectors such as PCIe slots, and CPU sockets. Keep in mind other needs, such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth capability, as some motherboards do come with these wireless functionalities in-built.
The RAM is an integral part of your computer, as it technically determines how quick your computer is at processing data at any point.
Just like the CPU, and GPU, the RAM also has a clock speed—and it's better to get RAM with a higher clock speed. However, you should ensure that your motherboard supports those clock speeds. For playing the latest games, it is recommended you have 16 GB of RAM.
You have two types of storage options available for your build: a hard disk drive (HDD), or a solid state drive (SSD). If your budget allows, always go for SSDs because they offer higher read and write speeds. These translate into faster loading times, plus an overall smoother performance in video games.
The PSU is what directs power from your wall socket to all the components in the computer. It also plays an important part in protecting your computer against power surges and fluctuations.
The PSU has wires that connect to your motherboard, GPU, fans, and storage device. Never cheap out on the PSU, and always look for an "80+" certification tag when buying one.
The computer case is what houses the entire build, including the fans, motherboard, PSU, and storage. While the choice is mostly aesthetic, some cases do have better cable management and ventilation. Related: AMD vs. Intel: What Is the Best Gaming CPU?
Besides the core components, there are other parts that you may need during the building process. These include:
Before attaching the CPU cooler, you will need to apply some thermal paste on the surface of the CPU, so ensure you have a quality one, at hand.
Static electricity is harmful for the components, and an anti-static wristband can help you avoid this problem. One end of the band is tied to your wrist and the other attaches to your case, or any metallic surface.
Since there may be multiple types of screws involved when attaching different components, it's always good to have a screwdriver kit at hand. Preferably with magnetic tips, since it will make your work much easier.
There is also the question of compatibility. Due to the sheer variety of components available, there is a high chance that the list of parts you made may have compatibility issues. As a general rule, always run your list of parts through websites like PC Part Picker before committing to a purchase.
When building the computer, you may realize that it is easier than you thought. All components in modern day computers are designed to fit into the right slots. However, one needs to be careful when handling delicate parts such as the CPU.
Here's how to go about assembling your first gaming PC:
The first component you should install is the CPU:
The CPU will come with a fan that will be placed atop the CPU and screwed in to the motherboard. Keep the thermal paste at hand, as you will need this during this step.
After installing the CPU and the CPU fan, it's time to slot in the RAM. Fortunately, this is very easy, and you should have no trouble doing so:
Related: A Quick and Dirty Guide to RAM: What You Need to Know
After installing the RAM, it's time to place the motherboard inside the case:
Even after you've finished building your gaming PC, always ensure you avoid mistakes that can damage or ruin your motherboard.
When you're ready to install the graphics card and storage, follow these steps:
For the last step in the primary process of building your PC, you just need to install the PSU and connect all the wires.
After following the steps listed above, 90% of your gaming PC build is complete.
All you need to do now is connect the peripherals and set up your computer for first-time use. So, what are you waiting for?
Got a new Windows computer? There are some tasks that you must take care of before you start using your new machine.
Manuviraj is a Features Writer at MakeUseOf and has been writing about video games and technology for over two years. He is an avid gamer who also spends his free time burning through his favourite music albums and reading.
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