Build your own boxing computer

Ever wanted to build your own computer instead of buying something off the shelf?  Well, the good news is that it is pretty simple. And for much less than you can buy a computer up town, you can build yourself a screaming game machine at home in about 2 hours. This keeps you from wasting money on things that are irrelevant to a game machine like memory card readers and DVD writers and instead put it where it counts in the RAM, Processor, Video and Hard Drive.

For instance, this week: at www.newegg.com for $384.90 you can build a sweet gaming rig for 2 boxing most any game out. You could easily cut that down to a $200ish with the bare essentials. This one though, would make an excellent gaming machine even for your main system.

The parts I used:

    * Antec 300 Gaming case with P/S
    * AMD Quad Core 3.0 GHz Processor
    * 4 Gig of DDR3 RAM
    * 500 Gig SATA
    * NVidia 9600GT PCI-E video

The rest is integrated into the mother board, sound, gigabyte network ect. We built one this week and I figured I would share it with you. Here is a rough draft that will give you an idea of whether you want to tackle this or not.  All you need is the parts and a #2 phillip screw driver.

Note: If you do decide to build your own computer remember to keep yourself grounded to avoid static electricity. If you drag your feet on the carpet and then grab your RAM it may be toast. Before you touch any computer part, first touch the computer's metal case, and each time there after.

1) Start with an empty case and power supply here ready to assemble.

 http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/ea/7d/ea7dc3d4f2009d4f47d2f1e0037d273f/1.empty.case.jpg

2) Place the mother board on a solid surface. Take the processor and examine it. You will see that there is an arrow on the mother board processor socket, and on the bottom of the processor. The processor will only fit one way. Be very gentle and do not force it in place. It should drop in. If you bend the pins they are a pain to get straightened back out.When you have the CPU in place and it is all the way down on the socket, lock the pin that holds it down by pressing it down into its clip.

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/5f/a4/5fa455469d496c244764cd4001578a1c/2.cpu.install1.jpg

 

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/2a/0b/2a0b2e2c4279ce6512a1f26b10467be0/3.cpu.install2.jpg

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/c8/fb/c8fbda1c65bdc4fd7877db3403581aa5/4.cpu.lock.jpg

 

3) When the CPU is locked in place you are ready to put on the heatsink and fan. Look at the bottom of the heat sink and be sure there is a thermal coating where it will touch the cpu. Line it up and catch one side of it on one of the ears on each side the CPU socket, then press it down over the other ear. When in place press the clip down to lock it on.

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/5e/1d/5e1d4ac54c949e529d8cf7137f8b55b9/5.cpu.fan.install.jpg

4) Plug in the CPU fan wire to the plug right by the socket. This is important... it will not run 20 seconds with out it.

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/8c/a6/8ca6d81564b1b658069ab0ebae4dd640/6.cpu.fan.installed.jpg

5) Now install your RAM. This is DDR3 but what ever you choose, it will only fit one way. There is a slot in the middle of the stick that is off set. Turn the RAM chip so it fits the slot and firmly press it down until the clips lock at both ends.

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/a2/c1/a2c1d0b546dbeed5b01cb8aa71bb43d6/7.ram.install.jpg

 

6) Install the backplate that came with the motherboard into the new case.  You will have to pop the old one out. Be careful as they have sharp edges.

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/48/4b/484bf5101a01709810868283b8a63580/8.back.plate.install.jpg

 

7) Place the mounting studs that your mother board requires in the casing. You will have to put in the MB and check the locations of the screw holes, then place the mounting studs in the case where you need them. When you have them installed mount the mother board in place and attach the case wiring.  There is tiny print by the ports that explain what each one does though you may have to consult the mother board manual.

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/70/06/7006b8b769018e8d938cc2671d2ed155/10.control.wires.jpg

 

8) This is the installed motherboard, processor and RAM with the case wiring attached.  Install your video card at this time. Find the proper slot for it and remove the plug in the back. Press the video card firmly into the slot, plug in the power supply to it if needed. (This particular one is an office machine so I am not adding a video card at this time.)

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/2f/92/2f9208348a8e799c1bbfe795a7bc09ba/11.installed.mb.jpg

 

9) Install your hard drive. Being Heat rises upward, mount it low in the case.

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/5d/2f/5d2fd016b35bbd0427c50817126511b0/12.install.hd.jpg

 

10) This is a SATA III drive and very easy to connect. The connector will fit only one way and there is no master / slave to worry about. Connect one end to the hard drive and the other end into the mother board SATA port 1.

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/44/1f/441f708e4ff2f45dd6b89a6717eed544/13.sata.cable.jpg

11)  This machine will have a DVD drive in it as well. You do not have to add one but they are only about $20 and are handy when installing new games and will help us install windows. You could install them from a network share though.

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/46/ce/46ce6e937181ae6b7fee0a9f4f299881/14.dvd.install.jpg

 

12)  This is the DVD and Hard Drive connected through the sata cables.

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/15/ce/15ce97413b63243dc9d983030ff210f6/15.sata.cables.installed.jpg

 

13)  Let's start connecting the power supply. First connect the power connector on the mother board. It will only fit one way. Press it firmly until it locks in place. There may be a extra 4 pin plug that attaches to the main one making it a 24 pin plug in. Just hold them together and plug it in. Smile

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/97/53/9753abd23265b04772d1fe72da163e7c/16.power.connector.mb.jpg

 

14)  Now plug in the 4 pin aux that supplies extra power to the CPU.

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/aa/49/aa490730c495d2b77c34bed22e6ecf9f/17.power.connector.2.jpg

15) Connect the power to our drives. It will only fit one way.It should look like this:

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/af/a0/afa0083860f582d41a6f9122952c01eb/18.installed.hd.jpg

 

16)  Enclose all remaining wires together with a wire tie.  This will keep the extra wires from catching in fans or possibly even shorting out on the case.

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/07/a7/07a77dfd7be609d87c75a9054b43e8e2/19.installed.wired.mb.jpg

 

17) At this point we should be ready to fire it up. Plug all your cables in, keyboard, mouse, monitor and power and start it up. Immediately press delete a few times to get into the BIOS. You should boot up to a screen like this:

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/ca/aa/caaa678cb3be345104200d686410134e/20.bios.1.jpg

 

18) Go to BOOT and change the Boot Device Priority to your DVD drive. Then go to save and exit. This is so we can install windows from disk.

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/64/e2/64e24c375bf3fe9c8fa606ff6678fdfb/21.bios.2.jpg

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/6a/1b/6a1bc4b30c8942ecbd25daaad4c5730d/22.bios.3.jpg

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/76/ef/76ef21b0c5c04c86338bc887b03913a4/23.bios.4.jpg

19) Now place your windows CD in the drive and restart the computer to start installing. We still like XP Pro because its small memory requirements. A fresh install of XP can sit at the desktop using 120 meg of RAM. This leaves me most of my RAM for gaming.  But what ever you choose, just follow the prompts and you will be fine. When you have it up to the windows desktop install the mother board drivers and the video card drivers from the disks included with them.

http://www.pcgametools.com/uploads/bc/14/bc14627ea27e65c2d9ed8ff2f3e638d7/24.completed.system.jpg

 

20) That is all that there is to it. If you can follow a few directions you can build your computer for a fraction of what it would normally cost. If you need pointers feel free to ask on the forum and we will try and help you.

Happy gaming!  Smile

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