The answer may surprise you.
That sounded rather click-baity.
But the truth is, the answer really is surprising.
It raised my eyebrows right off my head. So I had to write about it and tell you about it.
So, here’s the answer.
A custom build PC is, in fact, not at all cheaper than what brands typically offer you.
But here’s the catch (obviously there’s going to be a catch!).
A custom build PC is more expensive than what brands offer, if you compare the very best custom build with the entry-level variants of the brands.
Before we go any further, let me tell you basically how you go about building your own computer- the ASSEMBLING process, if you will.
INDIVIDUAL PARTS THAT GO INTO A COMPUTER:
We will be taking a look at all that you need to focus on should you decide to build your own computer. The list, the specs and the time you need to decide what is right, as you shall see, is probably not worth it.
1. What CPU Should You Get?
Duh! The brain of your system. If the processing power does not match your need, you’re pretty much screwed. Worse, unless you are looking at buying computers that are readily available online, it is a hard bargain for you to get the intel 8th generation processors that went on sale last year. The 8th gen Core i5 and i7 processors are 40% faster compared to the Sky Lake Intel processors introduced around a year back.
Add to it that they are 6 core processors, have better clock speeds and larger cache, and score on the top of benchmark results comprehnsively, always, and you know that you need to get your hands on them as soon as you can.
And to illustrate my point that custom built PCs can get nasty expensive, let me quote a few prices (subject to change if the makers so wish)
- Intel Core i9-7980XE costs a whopping $1974
- Intel Core i3-7100 costs a paltry $106 in comparison
So you see, it depends on your needs. For someone not likely to game on their PCs ever, a Core i3 makes perfect sense. And a true gamer would rather die than be seen with it.
AMD Ryzen 7 1700X will cost you about $399, so that’s a reasonable middle ground.
So is an Intel Core i7-8700K (around $380)
You’ll also need:
- A CPU cooler
- A motherboard
- RAM: DDR4 is the newest thing on the block, and the absolute top-end thing (a Kingston or a G-skill Trident will cost you upwards of $2000!!)
- Storage: SSD (solid state drive) is the word you’re looking for here. Expensive, yes. But there’s a night and day difference in the performance.
- A Graphic Card: A significant piece of the puzzle. An ATI FirePro 2270(512mb) can cost you $36, while the FirePro S9150 (16GB) will cost you 1000 big ones!
- Power supply
- Case aka the Cabinet
Well, that took a while! However, there is a lot more than just the CPU you need to think about.
2. Know the Display You Need
You need to figure out which Displays to get- widescreen or curved, aspect ratio, built-in speakers, resolution. Then you need to figure out which brand you trust more(though personally, I feel Samsung has it covered when it comes to creating gorgeous displays).
Then come the remaining peripherals.
3. What about the keyboard and the mouse?
Keyboard- You can go for a gaming one, where again there is a plethora of factors to consider.
Similar is the case with gaming mouses (mice?)
The list goes on growing:
- Optical drives
- Sound cards
- Wireless networking cards
- Uninterrupted power supplies
4. The Other Stuff
Did I mention you have to get the software essentials yourself?
Well, you do.
Some of the other things that you need to buy for your gaming PC includes the following:
- Operating systems
- Audio, Video players, Video editing software
- Backup software
- Office and productivity
How Much Does a Gaming Computer Cost?
To summarise, I’ll give you some cold hard numbers, so that you can get a very clear idea about custom built PCs.
- A good enough gaming build will cost you around $880.
- There are so many variables involved that the prices will most likely differ, this is as close an estimate as you will get.
- An entry level Alienware will cost you around $1500.
- A Razer Blade will cost around 1900 to 2000 bucks.
I hope you get the picture now.
I’ll ask the question which led me to write this article to you again.
IS IT CHEAPER TO BUILD YOUR OWN COMPUTER?
The answer is simple.
Yes, it is cheaper, if your computing needs are simple (no video editing or gaming)
And no, its actually going to cost you more if you go ALL OUT and build a machine powerful enough to rise up against the human race!
- Go for a brand with everything done for you if you want a system for Facebook and email.
- Go for a custom build, but keep things tight if you’re on a budget, and you can get a pretty decent PC for less than a 1000 bucks
- Go all out if you have the hard cash if you want your Computer to kick your friend’s computer (he will still beat in League of Legends if you don’t know how to play!)
Should You Build Your Own Computer?
Wondering whether you should buy it online? Many gamers still love to put things together when it comes to setting up their new PC.
If you try to assemble all of it together, it would probably cost you more than $1,000 or even around $2,000-$3,000 if you want to pack in all of the latest stuff together.
Instead, you can easily buy it from online sites like Amazon and get it delivered to your home straight away. No need to worry about anything else – even if you do lose any parts or something stops working outside the warranty period, you don’t have to worry when it comes to finding a replacement.