Welcome to the PC Builder series, a collection of articles looking at the best way to put a PC on your desk. Once upon a time, building a computer was best left to a "professional" - somebody that really knew what they were doing. Even if you could plug all the pieces together, things still might not work the way you expect. Today, anybody capable of using some basic hand tools can build a PC from scratch.
The PC doesn't get much good press anymore, tablets are considered sexier, and laptops take the portability crown. Yet, when it comes to getting the best value, or the greatest performance from a computer, the PC is hard to beat. As a PC builder, you also get choice. You don't have to accept what Apple or Dell give you in your computer. If you want a slower processor, more memory, and an SSD, then fine - you can have it.
This series consists of a number of articles looking at different aspects of getting the ideal PC. We don't just look at new equipment either, we also consider where it's better to buy a used PC and upgrade it with newer hardware to get the system you want. Consider this: There is no real challenge to build a top of the range PC. You simply select the supported quantity of the biggest, fastest, and best components and put them into a box. The resulting computer will certainly do everything you need, yet it won't be the best computer for the job. What we'll try to understand as we go through this series, is how to get the right PC.