05 Tips for Setting Up a Gaming Computer

Building your own gaming computer is a fun project for gamers who want to improve their set up. Setting up your first DIY computer can be challenging, but you’ll feel accomplished afterwards when you’ve succeeded.

Building a gaming computer on your own is often cheaper than buying all the expensive gaming gadgets at full price. You can also customize your PC to best fit your gaming needs. If you have some experience with electronics, setting up your own gaming computer won’t be too hard. For first-time builders or those without any prior experience working with electronics, it can be difficult but not impossible, and ultimately rewarding.

When you’re setting up your gaming computer, keep these helpful tips in mind!

Tips for Building a Gaming PC:

  • Budget Based on Your Preferences
  • Invest in a Quality PSU
  • Ensure Parts are Compatible
  • Build on a Flat, Hard Surface
  • Don’t Forget Cooling
  • Consider Cord Management

Budget Based on Your Preferences

One of the benefits of building your own gaming computer is that you can customize it to fit your gaming needs and preferences. It’s also usually more affordable, but you can pick and choose where to splurge and where to save. When you’re buying parts, plan a budget that fits your gaming preferences.

Choose your parts based on the types of games you’re playing and the technology that is most important to you. If it’s important to you to have a large gaming monitor, you may want to save on other parts like RAM or your keyboard. If you need a lot of memory, splurge on RAM and SSD or HDD and save elsewhere.

Invest in a Quality PSU

While you may want to save on the PSU to splurge on another, more exciting part, it’s important to use a quality power station unit. This part is responsible for supplying power to your computer, so it’s vital to the functionality of your PC. If you pick a cheap PSU, you put your computer at risk of frying and totally ruining your project. Power surges could crash your entire set up.

Always pick a PSU with an 80 plus power rating. It’s also best to look into product and manufacturer reviews, but 80 plus is generally the gold standard for power supplies. Choose an 80 plus PSU or above; the higher ratings move up as follows:

  • 80 Plus
  • 80 Plus Bronze
  • 80 Plus Silver
  • 80 Plus Gold
  • 80 Plus Platinum
  • 80 Plus Titanium

Higher ratings will come with better power supplies and other great features.

Ensure Parts are Compatible

Another important tip for the buying stage of setting up a gaming computer is checking compatibility. All of your parts need to be compatible, or else they won’t work together and you’ll waste time and money.

Two of the most important parts that must be compatible are your CPU and your motherboard. The motherboard needs to support the wattage and socket of your CPU. Be sure your motherboard will also support any additional hardware you plan to add to your computer.

One part that is often overlooked is the case for your parts. For those who are unfamiliar with building their own PC, the case is what holds all of the hardware (aside from the monitor and peripherals like mice and keyboard, of course). It’s important that the case fits all of your specific parts, and has room for more if you plan to add to your computer later.

Your case is customizable, so you can also add some personal style when choosing this piece of equipment. There are plenty of options out there depending on your budget, part compatibility, and personal preferences.

Build on a Flat, Hard Surface

Don’t build your gaming computer on carpet. Static electricity could harm your computer, so be sure to work on a flat, solid surface like a table or desk. If you’re working on a table that sits on carpet, some gamers will remove their socks to ensure they don’t carry any static electricity with them. Also, have plenty of lighting so that you can see what you’re doing!

Don’t Forget Cooling

All computers have fans, so this is a necessary component when creating your own. Some CPUs come with a cooler, but they aren’t always large enough depending on your other parts and gaming needs. Gaming computers work harder than standard PCs, so be sure that you have enough cooling power to keep them from overheating.

When you’re installing your cooler, follow the instructions carefully. You’ll probably use thermal paste to install this part, although sometimes it comes pre-applied. If it’s not pre-applied, don’t use too much; a pea sized amount will do the trick just fine.

Consider Cord Management

While building your computer, keep in mind how you’ll organize the cords. Cord management important to keep the look of your computer clean, tidy, and uncluttered: no one likes seeing a mess of tangled cords around their electronics.

Keeping your cords organized is also important for non-cosmetic reasons as well. If the cables are cleanly organized, it can improve the cooling of your CPU as there will be more, better airflow in the case. Managing all of your cables neatly will also create more space in general, so you can fit more graphics cards or other features that you want to add on later. Plan your cable management ahead of time, so that you can smartly place and organize the cords.

Have Fun Setting Up Your Gaming Computer

A final tip: have fun! While building your own gaming computer can be difficult and challenging, it’s also meant to be an exciting and fun challenge. You might get stressed or frustrated at times, but be patient with yourself. Take your time and consult online guides and experts to get everything working correctly! If it’s your first time building a computer on your own, check out the forums and look for tips and tricks.

Once you finally get your gaming PC up and running, it will be rewarding to know you set it up all on your own!