Here are 5 mistakes I made while building my gaming PC so you didn’t have to


Source: Windows Central

During the 2020 holiday season, I decided to treat myself to a few gaming PC upgrades. I saved some money by keeping my old motherboard and storage, but was able to upgrade hands on an i7-9700K and an RTX 3070, along with a new Hiearcool 750W power supply, 32GB of CORSAIR Vengeance RGB RAM, an NZXT Kraken M22 AIO, two of NZXT’s RGB fans and a sleek NZXT H510 Elite case. This hardware combination was a big step up from my previous kit, and I knew it was an investment that was going to pay off.

At this point the only obstacle standing between me and a top notch gaming experience was actually getting everything in place.

You see I never had built a front computer; instead, I had always chosen to go see someone else with all the components for help. This time, however, I wanted to learn how to do it on my own (don’t miss our guide on how to build your own PC in 2021, courtesy of my colleague Rich Edmonds). It was a great learning experience, but during construction I made some mistakes which resulted in frustration and wasted time. Plus, one of them might even have gotten me to fry some of my parts, although luckily that doesn’t.

Here is a look at the mistakes I made so that you can avoid them yourself if you are a newbie PC builder like me.

Do not search for compatibility

Custom PC constructionSource: Windows Central

I made my first mistake before I even opened my components: in my excitement to upgrade my PC, I didn’t check to make sure each of my parts was compatible with each other .

Prior to settling on the NZXT Kraken M22 AIO cooler, I had actually chosen and purchased the award-winning Noctua NH-D15 air cooler. The problem was that it wouldn’t fit on my motherboard without covering my RGB RAM, which completely destroyed the purpose. Running the cooler to fix this would not work, as it prevented my graphics card from plugging into the PCIe x16 slot. Of course, I could I used the PCIe x8 slot instead, but it would hurt the performance of my beefy RTX 3070.

Fortunately, I was able to get a refund for the Noctua cooler, but it’s not always guaranteed. Therefore, it is important to do proper research before purchasing any components so that you do not have to face the risk of purchasing a component that does not match your build and cannot be refunded.

The king of air cooling

Noctua NH-D15

Noctua NH-D15 chromax. Black

Stay cool … very cool

The Noctua NH-D15 is widely regarded as the best consumer air cooler available, but just make sure that it will fit well with your other components before purchasing one.

Being too shaky and nervous

RAM upgradeSource: Windows Central

One of the worst mistakes I made early in the build process was being too nervous when installing components. It’s understandable to worry about ruining your expensive PC gear, but the point is, building a PC the right way takes trust. This is because many connectors require considerable force to plug in, and also because shaking when screwing in can result in bent or bare screws.

Not plugging in cables properly and messing up your screws can damage your components, which obviously you want to avoid. Once I took a few deep breaths and relaxed, everything went much better.

Do not use a screw container

Magnetic screw bowlSource: Windows Central

Pretty much anything you put in your PC requires screws for proper installation, and as you build you will have to screw things in and out. many. Not having a container to put screws in during this process will inevitably lead to frustration, as the screws are likely to roll off your workspace and onto the floor. Losing a screw can stop your entire build and prevent you from completing it, so for your sanity use a bowl or something similar. I didn’t use a container at the start of my build, but eventually came to consciousness after dropping a screw for the millionth time.

Any type of container is better than nothing, but I highly recommend that you get a good magnetic screw tray. These will ensure that the screws will stick to the surface of the tabletop and won’t fly all over the place if you accidentally knock over the tabletop itself from your desk. They are very inexpensive and incredibly useful, so there is no reason not to buy one.

Loose screws stay in place

Magnetic plate Drixet

Magnetic plate Drixet

Never lose a screw again

This nifty magnetic tray lets you keep your screws in place as you build your PC, ensuring you never lose them.

Connect your screen to the motherboard

GPUSource: Windows Central

Once my build was completed and I was able to successfully post to my test bench, I rushed it into my play space and immediately started plugging everything in. I was not really thinking a lot – I just plugged cable connectors into the corresponding ports. When I booted everything up and started a game, my performance was considerablyworse than what it was in my old rig. How could that be?

Well, it turns out that I accidentally connected my monitor to my motherboard instead of my RTX 3070. This forces your PC to use the weakest integrated graphics solution in your processor as the active GPU. I spent 20 minutes of frustration trying to figure out why my performance was so bad before realizing I had made this stupid mistake, and suffice it to say that I had the palm of my hand strong enough.

Not to anchor

Antistatic wristbandSource: Windows Central

The last mistake I made while building my PC was that I never grounded myself during the process. Static electricity is incredibly unlikely to shock the components of your PC, but if it Is it that happen, it can damage or even fry the parts you spent hundreds of dollars on. Fortunately, I never had a static charge during construction, but you could, especially if you live in a house filled with a lot of carpet.

To ground yourself and make sure there is no risk of electrostatic discharge, you can plug in your power supply with the power switch turned off and touch it with your hand. You can also get your hands on an anti-static wrist strap if you’d rather be even safer. These are inexpensive, and all you need to do to stay grounded while wearing one is attach the clamp to your PC case and leave it there during construction.

To learn more about ESD prevention, check out our guide on how to avoid frying the inside of your PC with static electricity.

Surprisingly efficient

Vastar anti-static wrist strap

Vastar ESD Antistatic Hand Strap

Avoid the worst

With anti-static straps like these, you can fully protect your PC parts from accidental static shock.

Good luck with the construction!

Are you new to the PC building process like me, or are you a seasoned veteran? What mistakes have you made before? Let me know in the comments, as I can’t wait to find out more myself. Also, don’t miss our list of other newbie PC building mistakes to avoid if you’re looking for more tips. If you’d rather use a pre-built PC, check out our roundup of the best gaming desktop PCs.

Affordable accessories that blend perfectly with your PC

Each of these great PC accessories will enhance your everyday experience – and none cost more than $ 30.

KLIM Aim RGB Gaming Mouse
($ 30 on Amazon)

Whether you’re a gamer or not, this is an absurdly good mouse for the price. It’s ambidextrous, has a responsive sensor, braided cable, tank-like build quality and, yes, it has RGB lighting, although you can turn it off if that’s not your thing. thing.

AmazonBasics USB Speakers
($ 16 at Amazon)

These neat little speakers may only contain 2.4W of total power, but make no mistake about it. For something this small, you get a well-balanced sound and a sleek design. And they only cost $ 16.

Elastic Razer Mouse
($ 20 at Amazon)

Use a wired mouse? You need a mouse rubber band to keep your cable tidy and free of snags. You don’t drag the cable out, and this one has a subtle styling, rust-resistant spring, and weighted base, all for $ 20.

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