Is it better to build your own PC or buy a prebuilt one? The answer really depends on your budget and the current market. The following is a guide.
PC customization is an integral part of its appeal. Building a gaming PC can be like putting together a puzzle, since there are numerous components to select from and ways to customize it.
However, not every PC gamer is necessarily tech-savvy, so pre-built gaming PCs are quite popular. Whether you decide to build your own gaming machine or purchase a pre-built one, here are the main pros and cons of both options.
In order to ensure that you don’t end up with any components that aren’t a good fit for you, you can choose specific parts for a custom PC in accordance with your needs.
There are always adjustments that can be made to prebuilt PCs to make them more efficient and cost-effective. You may increase or decrease the amount of RAM, switch HDD storage for SSD storage, or find a better balance between the CPU and GPU.
As an example, a prebuilt PC might come with an i7 CPU, 32 GB of RAM, and a GTX 1060 graphics card. It would be better to get a gaming PC with an i5 CPU, 16 GB of RAM, and a newer/stronger GPU, such as the GTX 1660 Ti or even the RTX 2060.
Future-proofing is another issue to consider. Prebuilt PCs might use older CPUs and chipsets, which can severely limit the upgradeability of your PC.
If you were looking for a prebuilt budget gaming PC, you could use an AMD FX or an older-generation Intel Core CPU. These CPUs use outdated chipsets and obsolete sockets, so upgrading the CPU in the future would also involve changing the motherboard.
However, many prebuilt gaming PCs offer plenty of room for upgrades and tweaks. Even so, if you’re considering buying one, make sure the configuration doesn’t use any outdated components. You would then make sure you were getting your money’s worth, and that you wouldn’t have to spend more money on future upgrades than necessary.
Custom PCs ensure that you can put together a very cost-effective configuration without overspending on components that don’t matter that much when it comes to gaming. In terms of pricing, how do prebuilt PCs compare?
As it turns out, off-the-shelf components can be quite expensive. Do you remember when they made a supercomputer out of networked PS3 consoles? Consider how the cryptocurrency mining craze affected GPU prices a few years back, or how expensive DDR4 RAM can be. There are times when prebuilt PCs are a better value for your money.
Companies that deal with PC building have to cover the cost of the components, make a profit, and cover the incidentals that come with running such a business, but they can also get their components from OEMs at a lower price.
In the end, a prebuilt PC will usually cost you less than if you were to assemble that very same configuration yourself. Additionally, if you can find such a PC at a discount, it could end up being very cost effective for you.
The main selling point of prebuilt PCs is their convenience.
Prebuilt PCs are the best option for someone who is unfamiliar with PC components or simply doesn’t want to deal with the hassle of cable management.
Additionally, there are companies that build custom PCs on order. To a certain extent, you are getting the best of both worlds – you get a prebuilt PC, but one that can still be customized, albeit to varying degrees. This is not the most cost-effective way to get a customized PC, since most of these companies charge a fee.
Conclusion – Should You Choose a Prebuilt PC or a Custom PC?
It all comes down to you at the end of the day.
In addition to getting the best value for your money and a PC tailored to your needs, you can put together a PC with each component purchased separately.
Alternatively, a prebuilt PC could potentially save you a few bucks and a lot of time, and you’re unlikely to go wrong if you’re making a wise choice.
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Prebuilt PCs are the best choice for those who are either unfamiliar with technology or don’t have anyone who can assist them in building a PC. However, if you want to avoid getting stuck with outdated components or inadequate builds, it’s best to read up and speak with someone more knowledgeable.
A number of buying guides are available on our site where we detail the best builds you can put together without going over a particular price point, including $600, $800, $1000, $1500, and $2000 gaming PCs.
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Furthermore, we have also selected the best prebuilt gaming PCs under $500, $800, and $1000, so you might want to check those out before making your final decision.