Recently, I helped film a video over on our YOUTUBE channel, where I ran around the office and grabbed whatever parts I could to throw together a patchwork PC. I managed to put together quite the “Franken-PC” of spare parts. During this, I was reminded of just how many factors you have to think about when putting together a PC. So, here are 5 extra things to remember when putting together a PC. Forgetting these things can lead to quite the headache – so here’s to a headache free build!
1. CPU and Motherboard Compatibility
This was a huge hurdle for me! I only had a few CPUs to choose from and a plethora of Motherboards that just didn’t want to work with them. This is because only certain boards will work with certain CPUs. For starters, AMD boards and Intel Boards won’t work with the other brands CPUs. Additionally, there can also be issue with the BIOS. For newer CPUS or Boards, mixing them with an older model can lead to issues in terms of being too old to run together. Sometimes you can update your BIOS so they can work, but other times you can’t. Best way to avoid this is do as MUCH research as you can to make sure your chipset and motherboard will work together harmoniously. Sometimes, this will mean buying a new motherboard to support the new chip you are wanting. So, be prepared to fork out some extra cash if you have to here.
2. Fan Configuration
Fans are honestly the bane of my existence sometimes. But they are a really critical part of your PC, and as I explained in THIS blog post, considering the configuration of your fans is very important. I managed to wrangle up quite a stack of fans for the patchwork build, and ensured to get a solid push/pull configuration. Even if your Hardware is pretty basic so it won’t get too hot, it’s still good practice to keep this in mind.
3. Will your components fit?
The worst thing about just grabbing whatever parts you can find; is you don’t really have the time or ability to make sure everything fits properly. I ended up having to front mount the AIO which wasn’t exactly what I had planned at first. So, just remember that if you are going with an AIO or even a bulky air cooler, check your measurements! Websites will always list the dimensions of the products you are looking at, so really think about whether everything will fit in the configuration properly. Using a website like PC Part Picker can also help you out in this, as they will often include small notes which tell you when these sorts of issues might pop up.
4. Make sure to have all the Power Supply cables you need
So, the GPU I was planning to use in the Frakenbuild fun fact, required two PCIe cables. And the Power Supply I had, fun fact, only had one PCIe cable around that I could use. This of course, meant I had to find a new graphics card. Luckily, we had some other options, but you might not. Most Power Supplies will give you a few PCIe cables anyway, but before you pop everything in your case, just double check. Does your graphics card need just one PCIe cable, or two? There is nothing worse than having to fish your entire PSU out after installing basically evevrything, so this is worthwhile thing to remember.
5. Storage Options
Lastly, I want to share with you the pain of storage. Time to out myself – one time I bought a new M.2 SSD… only to discover I didn’t have two M.2 slots on my motherboard. Please, hold your sad sighs of disapproval, I know already (and besides, I have a portable M.2 enclosure anyway so I still got use of out it luckily). Anyway, the point of this sad confession is that it’s worth taking note of what Storage options are available to you before investing in anything. Same thing goes for HDDs or 2.5” SSDs, especially as these are a bit bulkier and really need a proper spot to sit in your case (especially HDDs. If they rattle around too much, they can easily get damaged and you can lose a lot of previous data).
There were 5 extra things to remember when putting together a PC.
Hopefully, this helps you to avoid any catastrophic issues during your next build. But remember, everyone makes mistakes (even people who’ve built for years), and most things are very fixable. Just don’t, I dunno, submerge your entire PC in a pool for example, that might not go so well for you or your PC. If you can think of any other extra things to remember when putting together a PC build, pop them below!