I've built and bought some PCs throughout my career. Having a decent machine at home is important for me as a technologist. When I was younger, I liked assembling parts into my own machine. Now, I hate it. Actually, now I just buy used machines from Glenn Berry
and let him play with the parts. He's an expert on hardware, and he's helped me numerous times.
I saw an article this week on building a PC
, which I think is a good general set of things to think about. This is roughly the process I'd follow, and I'd urge you to read the whole thing before you start. I've often had to make a second trip to Microcenter (the Denver local PC parts place) to get something I'd forgotten the first time. I've also occasionally picked the wrong part and needed to return something and get a better (or compatible) part.
If you aren't a hardware person, building a PC isn't hard. Glenn helped my son figure some things out when he wanted a gaming computer as a teenager, and he assembled the system himself. It is invaluable to have someone that you can call if you have questions. While most things just fit together, the world is way more complex than it was in 1990 when I built my first PC. There are lots of guides on how to put one together and you can create a very powerful PC at a reasonable cost.
And if you don't want to build one, think about buying one. Glenn has some systems for sale
. and many local retailers or computer shops will help you pick what suits you if you don't want to build one. However, as a technical person, I think it can be a fun exercise to pick your parts and assemble your own system. You might even enjoy personalizing things with some colors, lights, or a cool case
for your desk.
Creating a PC is a good exercise for you as a technical person. Not for me. I've done it enough times. Now I just want to go pick up a new (to me) box from Glenn that just works and buy him lunch so he'll move the storage from one system to the other😉