So you’ve finally saved up your allowance or earnings to ascend to the PC master race or get an upgrade from your current rig. There are plenty of options in the market, ranging from budget offerings to high-end streaming and video-editing-ready parts. But components and peripherals are only half the battle. The biggest question on any budding PC gamer’s head is: Should I buy or build my own gaming computer?
There’s no concrete answer to this question. There are pros and cons to each option. Plus, it depends on a lot of factors, including your budget and overall enthusiasm in the hobby. Here’s what you should consider when choosing between buying or building your PC.
Let’s start with the most important factor: how much money you’re willing to sink into your PC. Generally, it’s much cheaper to build your own computer, as you don’t have to pay for labour. Plus, you can make compromises on some cosmetic parts, like the case, to lower the cost of your build. You can get an entry-level PC for under £500.
However, as you reach for higher specs, you might find that some custom computers cost just as much, if not more than their all-in-one PC counterparts. This is because all-in-one computer manufacturers may get discounts on the parts they get, as they buy them wholesale.
Building your own PC is the clear winner here. It allows you to pick and choose which parts you want for your rig, given that they’re compatible with the other components. You can increase your budget on powerful parts like the central processing unit (CPU) and graphics processing unit (GPU) and spend less on the least important parts and peripherals. Alternatively, you could also splurge and create a theme for your PC with RGB fans and a case that matches your motherboard and graphics card’s colour.
Prebuilt PCs are becoming increasingly modular throughout the years, allowing you to customize them from a company’s website. However, you’re limited to the parts from their partner brands. You may have to sacrifice some of your preferences when getting a prebuilt.
Convenience vs. Pride
Prebuilt PCs win the convenience round, hands down. You only need to bring them home or get them delivered to your doorstep, connect the necessary wires, and power them on. No setups needed. Plus, the quality is guaranteed to be top-notch, as they’re tested before they leave the factory.
If you like to work with your hands, however, you may enjoy the process of assembling your own PC. It takes a lot of research, plugging and slotting in, and cable routing, and some troubleshooting. But it’s definitely rewarding when you finally get your rig to work. There’s just a sense of pride in using something you’ve built yourself.
Buying vs. building your PC all depends on your preferences and budget. If you can spend a lot of cash on one and you don’t want to go through the hassle of researching and assembly, by all means, get a prebuilt. But if you’re on a strict budget and willing to do the hard work yourself, build your own. In the end, it’s all about getting a PC that runs the games and programs you want at the quality and speed you expect.