Choosing computer components can be nerve racking. Every part you choose has to work will all of the other components in your computer system. If one component is not chosen properly your computer system may not function to its full potential. I broke down each section into what parts I chose when building my own computer and also the things you need to make sure of before choosing particular components.
I would like to point out, one of the first things a person can run into while choosing computer components is OEM and retail products. Â OEM (Original Equipment manufacturer) products are generally cheaper than retail products but usually do not come with any software and warranties. Retail products come shipped in the original box with all instruction manuals, software, warranty, etc.
Choosing a Computer Motherboard
|I Chose:I chose the MSI P6N Diamond Motherboard because it has SLI technology and will support all of the other parts that I have chosen to use in this build. The P6N is becoming harder to find since the MSI P7N Diamond ATX Intel Motherboard with SoundBlaster X-Fi Extreme Audio hit the market.
||When choosing a motherboard:
- Make sure the processor socket type and FSB match the processor being used.
- Make sure the memory slots are correct for the type and speed of memory being used
- Make sure it has the correct video card slots. (The motherboard I will be using has SLI technology so I will be using two video cards.)
- Make sure the motherboard has the correct storage device slots such as IDE or SATA.
- Depending on how crazy you are about sound check what onboard sound the motherboard comes with.
- Make sure the onboard LAN (internet connection) and all of external ports match what is being used. (example: USB or PS/2 Ports)
- Make sure to leave room for expansion for the future.
Choosing a Computer Processor
|I Chose:I chose the Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 2.4GHz LGA 775 Quad-Core Processor and an ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro 92mm CPU Cooler because I will be doing a lot of multitasking and I need a processor that will not leave me with a huge delay.
||When Choosing a Processor:
- Make sure the motherboard supports the Processor that picked and has the correct socket type so it will mount to the motherboard properly.
- Make sure the FSB of the processor is supported by the motherboard.
When Choosing Processor Cooling:
- If using an OEM processor a heat sink/fan assembly will need to be chosen.
- Make sure that when choosing a heat sink/fan assembly that is will be efficient and cool the processor properly for how much of a demand will be put on the processor.
- Make sure the fan connector will work with the motherboard
Choosing Computer RAM
|I Chose:I usually go with either crucial or corsair memory. For this build I chose CORSAIR 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory.
||When Choosing RAM:
- Make sure the motherboard has the correct slots for the type of RAM chosen.
- Make sure the motherboard supports the type of memory chosen.
- Make sure the motherboard supports the amount of RAM to be used.
Choosing Computer Video Card
|I Chose:I chose to go with two XFX GeForce 9600 GT XXX Alpha Dog Eddition PVT96GYDSU Video Card. This should support all of my online gaming needs and give me a high quality picture on my monitor.
||When Choosing Video Cards:
- If using SLI, make sure the video cards and the motherboard are SLI ready.
- Make sure the motherboard supports the correct slot(s) for the video card(s).
- Make sure the Core clock speed and the stream processors are adequate for what the computer will be used for.
- Make sure the memory clock, size, interface and type are adequate for what the computer will need to do.
- Make sure the video card has the correct monitor and accessory ports needed.
Choosing Computer CD/DVD Drive
|I Chose:I chose to go with one ASUS Black SATA DVD-ROM Drive Model DVD-E616A3T OEM and one ASUS 20X DVDÃ‚Â±R DVD Burner with LightScribe Black SATA Model DRW-2014L1T. This will allow me the option of using two drives at once and make it possible for me to transfer information from one drive to another with ease.
||When choosing CD/DVD Drives:
- Make sure to look at the performance levels on how fast the drive accesses and writes information. (Depending on how long you are willing to take to have these tasks finished.)
- Make sure the physical spec (size) will sit into the case.
- Make sure to pick the correct interface (SATA/IDE) depending on what the motherboard specs are.
Choosing Computer Expansion cards
|I Chose:I chose to install a DIAMOND XtremeSound XS51 SoundCard and a ASUS PhysX Processing Unit PHYSX P1E Video Card . I will install the sound card for the purpose of this tutorial and then probably remove it later because the onboard sound will be good enough for me. I happened to have the physx card lying around out of another computer and figured there was no harm in installing it but this is probably overkill because I already have two video cards.
||When Choosing Expansion Cards:
- Make sure that the interface (example: PCI) is correct for the motherboard.
- If buying a video card make sure all of the ports are correct for what is needed.
Choosing a Computer Power Supply
|I Chose:I chose a RAIDMAX QUANTUM RX-700 700W SLI Power Supply because it has enough power for everything that I am running in the computer and it is also SLI approved. This power supply will leave me with enough room for expansion in the future and suit my ncurrent needs.
||When choosing a power supply:
- Make sure there is enough power for all of the computer components.
- Make sure the main connector will work with the motherboard
- Make sure all of the other connectors will work with all of the computer components. (Examples: SATA Power connectors, IDE Power Connectors, PCI Express Power Connectors)
Choosing a Computer Case and Cooling
|I Chose:I chose to go with a more cost efficient computer case because the case I wanted would put me over my personal budget,and my computer desk will only fit a mid atx case in it. I chose a diabolatek 802 computer case and I will be using 3 80 mm case fans that I have lying around. In the future I am hoping to expand to a full tower case (example: Thermaltake Armor Series VA8003BWS Black Full Tower Case) and probably go to a Thermaltake CL-W0121 2U Drive Bay Water Cooling System.
||When Choosing a Computer Case:
- Make sure that there is enough room for all of the computer components inside the case. (Example: Mid ATX / Full ATX)
- Make sure to have the correct spaces allotted for the power supply, hard drive(s), CD/DVD drive(s), ect.
- Make sure there will be sufficient room for cooling.
Choosing an Operating System
|I Chose:I chose to use Microsoft Windows XP Professional SP3 English for System Builders 1 Pack CD because it has a lot of feature I can use over xp home. An average user will only need Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition SP3 English for System Builders 1 Pack CD .
||When Choosing an Operating System:
- Make sure all of the system requirements of the operating system are met.