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What Do I Need For a Gaming PC (How Much To Build One?)

by Lisa Hayden
what do i need for a gaming pc

Do you have a yen for today’s batch of exciting games but disappointed by the way your PC handles it? Do you find yourself troubleshooting your CPU more and more after a game

Chances are, your desktop computer might not be powerful enough for your gaming needs.

Thus, it’s time to do what smart, avid gamers do - create your own custom rig. The whole deal will take a little elbow grease and research, but trust us, having a gaming PC with all the right stuff is worth the sweat. We’ll break down the essentials on the parts you need.

Gaming PC: The Parts

pc gaming parts

1. CPU (Central Processing Unit)

The CPU serves as the brain of your rig because it orders all parts to work together. Your games and applications’ performance will always depend on this component.

Intel and AMD are popular CPU manufacturers, and there’s a good variety of units out there. Watch out for processors that are made to function with a specific motherboard though. For gaming rigs, look for powerful CPUs that can handle the latest games.

2. Motherboard

All that hardware on your rig will not operate without the help of a circuit board called the motherboard. Motherboards also come in an excellent range of prices from budget ones to pricy boards packed with features.

selecting a motherboard

The kind of motherboard you will need for your rig will depend on the features you’re after and the CPU you plan on purchasing. For the best motherboard, get one that suits your CPU, its connectivity options, light and overclocking abilities for the CPU.

3. Video card

Get rid of lag, so you can enjoy your souped-up games. Reach for a video card that matches your CPU and motherboard. Video cards for gaming are designed to handle the robust graphics and effects of newfangled computer games.

graphics card being cleaned

This graphics processing unit (GPU) connects to the motherboard by way of a PCI Express or AGP slot. For gaming, experts often suggest that users employ a graphics card which can be connected by means of a PCI Express slot to the motherboard.

4. Memory (RAM)

Prevent delays for maximum gameplay by supplying your rig with sufficient memory or RAM (Random Access Memory). A good, standard working PC must have at least 4GB RAM but for gamers, having 16GB of memory is the minimum to run your memory-sapping game smoothly.

RAM for gaming

Check the specs of your motherboard first to find the number of RAM sticks you require plus the types and speeds on hand.

5. Storage

Storage, of course, is where you put all of your stuff from the operating system to your games. HDDs or hard disk drives were the hottest storage units back in the day. Currently, SSDs or solid-state drives are top picks since they’re quicker and more durable.

Most experts recommend the use of a smaller SATA SSD over hard drive for a gaming rig’s operating system and frequently used files plus a sizable HDD for bigger files.

Storage

You can also consider external storage for additional space.

6. Power supply

Your gaming rig’s internal parts need its juice, and this is where the power supply comes in. Every power supply features a specific wattage or amount of energy depending on their maximum output power.

Wattage usually ranges from 300-500W, but there are also models that provide 800-1000W.

For desktop gaming, a power supply unit with 500W will always suffice. A high-quality power supply should never be overlooked, so your rig will always be up and running.

7. Heatsink or Fan for the CPU

CPUs are quite the busy bees - they start working as soon as your rig gets switched on. All that effort though generates heat within. While most CPUs already include a cooler, you will need something more powerful for your gaming rig. Choose among a good variety of fans, heatsinks and liquid-cooled radiators available in the market today.

How to Clean a CPU Fan

8. Case

The case is one of the most adjustable components of your PC, available in different sizes and shapes. Most cases work well with standard gaming computer parts.

Go for one that has an appropriate size for your CPU, motherboard and the design you need. It’s also crucial to consider if the case has enough room for potential cooling solution plans.

9. Gaming monitor

PC monitor sizes range from 17-20 inches. Remember these following factors when choosing a good gaming monitor; native resolution, size and price.

Samsung LC49HG90DMNXZA CHG90 Curved 49-Inch Gaming Monitor

The size and resolution you need will depend on your preferences. After deciding on those factors, you can then consider the cost. If you still need a bit more detailed technical help on choosing monitors, check here

10. Keyboard

Look for a keyboard that has helpful features which will make the activity more comfortable for you. Good ones come with backlit, adjustable LCD screens, backlit keys, timer controls and 18 programmable G keys.

Female hands on keyboard playing computer game with gaming gear.

Majority of gamers often pick mechanical keyboards over standard rubber types.

How Much Should I Spend on a Gaming Rig?

When it comes to gaming rigs, the amount you are willing to spend on will depend on the kind of experience you want to reach.

Whether you’re on a budget or willing to splurge to build your dream rig, the gaming industry has plenty of hardware and products that cater to a good variety of budgets.

Thusly, we give due thanks to technology for making this happen.

Just make sure to invest in proper hardware for your rig since they will be responsible for your computer’s entire operations and performance.

Gaming computers must be responsive, move fast, exhibit excellent frame rates and ready to run several apps at once without a hiccup. Good hardware is always vital in an excellent gaming PC.

We have laid out all of the essentials you need for your custom gaming PC here and have included the list of best available gaming laptops in this article, as a just in case. Now it’s time for you to check hardware and software options.

You need not worry about finding the best components and hardware for your rig these days—the gaming industry recognizes the needs of gamers and has made such items readily available in an excellent selection of prices and features.

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