Build a Gaming PC 2011 – 2012 Building a Custom Gaming Computer

A Custom Gaming PC Built by our Staff

If this is the first time that you’ve ever built your own gaming PC, then at first it may appear to be a daunting task.  One advantage to coming to this site is that we keep a current list of all the top hardware for 2011 in our categories above.  In general, we try to vary our picks by price range so that you can easily find what you’re looking for according to your budget.

Also, one recommendation that you certainly should follow, if this is your first time building a custom gaming PC,  is to invite someone that has had experience in building computers before to help you to build a computer.  Make sure that rather than putting it together for you they help you to do it so that you’ll always be able to do it in the future.  Once you’ve done it you’ll realize it’s not as hard as it may have looked before.  In addition, instructions for the hardware parts that you order and additional videos that you can find online make it a pretty simple process.

Build a Gaming PC 2011 – 2012 Compatibility

One of the biggest issues that gamers are worried about when building their own PC is compatibility and space.

Here are some suggestions in making sure that you start your build off correctly:

1.) Choose Your CPU First

Make sure to choose your CPU first when making your build.  A CPU will limit what type of motherboards that are available.  Just make sure that it matches the CPU socket type of your motherboard or LGA 1155, 1156, 1366, AM3 for example.

2.) Motherboard

In addition to making sure that your motherboard’s socket matches up with your CPU, be sure to make sure that your motherboard can handle the GPU that you plan on purchasing.  Look for PCI Express 2.0 x16 expansion slot (if that’s what you need).  In addition try to stay with the newer technology (if you can afford it) and get a motherboard that is USB 3.0, DDR3, and Sata 6Gb/s compatible.

3.) GPU/Video Card

A hefty portion of your overall budget should go to your graphics card.  If you’re budget is $1000 or below you should try to make it be around 25% of your overall build.  We recommend you look at (in order of price) the GTX 430, GTX 460, GTX 560 or Radeon HD 6950, and on the high-end the GTX 570.

4.) Gaming Case

When looking at gaming cases make sure that you have the cooling options that you’ll need (more is better, especially if you SLI/Crossfire your GPU).  If you plan on going to LAN parties or lugging around your PC, then getting a mid-tower is ideal.  A full-size tower is ideal for a stationary PC as it allows for better airflow and has more slots for all of your hardware upgrades.

5.) Ram

When it comes to Ram more is always better, but be sure not to by expensive ram that is faster than what your motherboard can handle.  If you do, then generally it will default to a lower standard.  You can see what your motherboard can handle by checking the memory standard on your motherboard’s designations.  In the specifications also be sure to check how much memory is supported.  We recommend getting a motherboard that can support at least up to 16GB ram.

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