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I want to understand. Everything.

Last response: in Components
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July 9, 2012 8:53:53 PM

First of all, I would like to say that I'm sorry if I posted this in the wrong Category.

So, my problem is this. Fairly recently, my Macbook started having lots of problems (screen problems, freezing etc.) and it turns out that at the end of March 2013, I will be inheriting a decent amount of money. As I spend the majority of my time on the computer, I decided to put aside up to £2000 for a - hopefully - top of the range computer - mainly used for gaming.

However, I don't know anything; literally anything about computers and what to do. I asked around a little and I was directed towards this site/forum. I was told that it was easier and much cheaper to build my own computer and I think I would be able to do this as many people said it was fairly easy, similar to a very important lego set!

Basically, what I want to know is the very basic. E.g, what is a hard-drive, motherboard, graphics card? What do they do? Lots of hardware related questions and, if easier, maybe a place to learn all this without cluttering up your awesome forums here! :D 

I also apologise if this has been answered lots of times, I did try and look around :??: 

More about : understand

July 9, 2012 9:02:07 PM

wikipedia.org is your friend (simplified, but correct)
July 9, 2012 10:30:06 PM

its easy enough to build your own pc if you are at all practical

providing all the parts you get are compatible

its when you push the power button the 1st time and it doesnt work properly it gets harder

not much use us suggesting parts for your budget as by march 2013 they would be outdated

and no offense but questions like

what is a hard-drive, motherboard, graphics card? What do they do?

are so basic that google will easily answer them for you





Related resources
July 9, 2012 11:46:45 PM

You've made the first right step by dumping Apple.
July 10, 2012 1:05:39 AM

And when you're done with wiki, below are a list of links that were invaluable when I built my first pc. (Many thanks to the lads and ladies at Toms')

Motherboards
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/best-motherboard-gu...

BIOS
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/bios-beginners,1126...

PSU
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/power-supply-specif...

Selection of parts and putting it all together
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/build-your-own-pc,2...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/build-balanced-plat...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/balanced-gaming-pc,...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/balanced-gaming-pc-...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/balanced-gaming-pc-...

Case mods and lighting
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/case-modding,1910.h...

Watercooling
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/265776-29-read-first-...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/a-beginners-guide-f...

There's a ton more info out there, and some of the links above will be of little use on your 1st build (watercooling for example, unless you're one of those super adventurous chaps), but hey, you said you wanted to know it all. This aint all, but it's a start. Good luck.
July 10, 2012 1:48:42 AM

there also how to build and repair a pc for dummies book and quite a few good videos on new egg of parts and also on youtube of how to build a pc. there are a few companies that will build you a pc
http://www.ibuypower.com/
these are ones where they take off the shelf parts that you can buy and put them together like the old alienware used too.
with these compines at lest you get a warranty if a part fails and you dont think you can fix or replace it yourself.
if you do go and build it yourself make sure you buy a trune 80 bronze power supply as the min for the build. a lot of no name power supply can and do when they fail take out your whole rig. (look up cheap power supplys or power supply failures on you tube.) there a few where a web page like toms was load testing a power supply and it took out the wiring and load tester.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zWt3St_MhSY
the cheap ps are easy to spot it the ones that the vendor over rate that are the biggest issue now. where the power supply says 600w but it a 450 to 500w at most...you can see this on sight like hardcops that load test a power supply. a good one will stay withing the atx spec even loaded to 100 percent..the bad one one leg of the ps will fail or there be so much ac line noise (ripple) that the pc will reboot or hang. the other trick is learning the cost to value curve on pc parts. ie 680 gpu...big bucks...the 670 almost as fast as the 680 but a whole lot less in cash. in a few months amd may drop there new 8000 line of gpu.. if they do then you have the 6000/7000/8000 line of cards to pick from for speed and price. one thing you dont want to do is run right out and buy the newest mb..cpu or gpu...give the vendors a few weeks to work bugs out. other things to look at when buying is the vendors warranty and there customer support and how good they are on rma (return material authorization). look at the place your buying parts..look to see there return and cancel policy. do they charge you a restocking fee even thought the package is still sealed. local stores like micro center have a great return policy...
dont buy parts one a month till you have all the parts...if one is doe it going to be outside the return of most stores and online. better to put one order in for the parts and use free shipping on the order. also dont pay cash or use a check for payment...if a part is damaged in shipping and the shipper and store wont help you...it happens...with a credit card you can fill out a form and do what called a charge back. if you use a check or cash there nothing a bank can do for you. also some credit card used to extended the warranty of large $$$ buys.
!