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One of the best things about building your own computer is that you can choose every single part yourself. Not only does this mean that you can buy parts that suit your needs exactly, but you can also make sure that every component is of good quality.

On each page you will find 'tabs' like those below. Click the orange bars to expand them.

What's in a PC?

A typical PC will contain the following parts.

However, when building a PC from scratch, you may also consider:

Extra cooling will make your computer run cooler and can also reduce noise. RAID though it does require 2 or more hard drives in order to work. A monitor is essential if you don't already own one that you can use. A mouse and keyboard and speakers are also required if you don‚t already have some you can use.

How to Choose Components

Choosing components can seem like a daunting task, with so many different models and features available it can become overwhelming if you don‘t know what you‘re looking for. In this section we will take you through choosing each component showing you how to find the parts that suit your needs and how to understand the specifications manufacturers supply.

The most important part of choosing components is reading expert‘s reviews. With the power of Google, all you have to do is search for the components model name + ‘review‘ and you should get a plethora of results. If you don't have time to read the whole review just read the conclusions and scores to ensure that you don‘t end up buying hardware which has major flaws.

How to use Each Page

  • The Video will show you where the component is located within the typical PC.

  • The Introduction/summary which will give you an overview of the information you need to select that component.

  • The Examples section looks at specific types of computer (Home, Gaming, Office, Media Center and Workstation) and provides you with a low, middle and high example component for each.

  • The Explanations section explains in detail the technical terms associated with that component. Although beneficial, understanding all these terms is not essential and can be treated more as a reference than essential reading.

  • The Related Links, where you can find more information on that particular component, including reviews and the Wikipedia entry.

a diagram of a page showing what each section is for

Where to Buy

When it comes to buying components, the best place is online. This will allow you to quickly compare prices and give you a much larger choice than in shops. The only time we would recommend buying from a high street store is if you need the parts that day. Most online retailers will have a next day shipping option. Below are some popular online retailers.

Places to Buy

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