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Build Your Own Gaming PC

Tutorial and step by step instructions of building a gaming PC.

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Skip to:Page 4: Build It - Step 6 - Step 10 »

  • DVD/Optical Drive: LG Electronics GSA-H55L Dual Layer DVD±RW Writer - See the DVD/Media Reader
    There are dozens of different DVD Drives, I decided upon the LG GSA H55L basically because it was onsale at Best Buy and had all the features I was looking for. Read/Write in any format DVD+/-R, DL+/-R DVD RW, etc... and had Lightscribe labeling capablility.
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  • Media Reader: Ultra MD3 Media Dashboard - See the DVD/Media Reader
    One think I liked about my old eMachines PC was it's front panel media reader. For my new PC I purchased the Ultra MD3 Media Dashboard. This media reader allows be to insert most types of media cards; USB, Firewire, SD, SDHC, SM and others. In addition to the media reader it also comes with 2 fan controls and temperature readouts with alarms.
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  • Tools - See the Tools
    Some basic tools is probably all you'll need for building your PC. A phillps head screwdrive, needle nose pliers, static gloves, plastic fasteners, and electricians tape is all I used. The static gloves or grounding strap is very important and you don't want to pass any static charge on to any of the components before you even get it running. I'd also recommend a pair of scissors for cutting the plastic ties and a small magnet for pulling out those small screws you may drop but that's about all.

Build It - Putting it all together...

When handling your computer components, especially things with exposed circuitry (i.e. CPU, motherboard, RAM, graphics cards. etc...), I highly recommend doing so with static gloves or a static wrist strap on, or at the least make doubly sure you're grounded. You don't want to send a static shock to your high priced components before you've even got it built. Make sure to never plug any of your components into an electrical outlet, At no point during the building process do you want any of your components plugged into an elecrical outlet, that do. Not until step 14 is it ok to plug your power supply into

Steps 6-9 can be performed before or after steps 1-5 the key is that you want your case set and ready along with the CPU and RAM installed in the motherboard, prior to installing the motherboard in the case.

Step 1: Read/Review the Manuals
Before starting to put everything together it's important you at least review the manuals and know generally where your components will go. For example most Motherboards come with pretty good labeling on the board itself but it's still a good idea to what all the pins and sockets do before you start.

Step 2: Setup the Case
See Step 2
Setting up the case prior to installing anything is quite simple. Every case is different some complete completely setup, while others require you install the case fans. In the list you can expect to un-twist some twist ties and move the cables so they don't obstruct anything you're going to be installing. The most important task in this step is to install the motherboard standards. These are small screws or spacers that the motherboard will be mounted on. Most cases support multiple motherboard layouts so you'll want to make sure you place the standards in the correct case slots so you can later line up the screw holes in the motherboard.

Step 3: Install the Power Supply
See Step 3
If a power supply comes pre-installed with your case then you can skip this step. The majority of cases available however do not come with a power supply due to the fact that power requirements vary quite a bit depending on the components you'll be installing. Installation of the power supply, like preparing the case is quite simple. Just make sure you have the power supply fan and rear power cord jack is facing the correct direction and that the screws are securly fastened.

Step 4: Install DVD/Misc Front Bay Drives
See Step 4
I chose to install my DVD and media reader next. I've seen other tutorials recommend doing this step after the motherboard has been installed but by installing these now, prior to the motherboard will in many cases avoid having to maneuvar cables around your RAM and/or CPU fan. Snap out the front panel, pushing or pressing on the plastic tabs from the inside should release them, and then slide the DVD or other drive into the bay from the front feeding any cables in first. I installed the media reader on top mainly because there was a more direct route to the CPU for the fan and temperature controllers than there was on the second drive bay down. The DVD went into the second drive bay without a hitch.

Step 5: Install Hard Drive
Installing the hard drive was another step that I chose to do prior to installing the motherboard. The way the internal HDD bays line up with other components I found it easier putting this in now rather than fight with cords and components trying to slide it into the drive bay. The screwless drive bays in the NZXT Hush case made installation a breeze.

Page 4: Build It - Step 6 - Step 10 »

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