Building vs Buying Computers

I was just wondering how many of you guys build your own computers and how many buy pre-built computers. Also, do you think that an 11 year old (me) could build a computer with no assistance (no help choosing parts or anything as my parents aren’t very computer savy).


Well, my computer was built custom, but I didnt build it myself.

I have built custom and I have purchased systems. It depends on what the need is. The last few home systems have been purchased, I could not buy the components for what the entire system cost.

The servers are all custom, since I wanted low form factor boxes to fit in a specific location.

Laptops are all purchased pre-assembled.

They are not hard to build, there are lots of how to guides on the internet. Key point is to READ THE DOCUMENTATION THAT COMES WITH YOUR MOTHERBOARD before you start assembly.

I prefer to build custom computers, even though my last computer was factory made. Building one yourself will be more cost effective and give you a much better product than just buying a computer. It’s not that hard to do, although you do have to be careful not to make a mistake such as forgetting to eliminate static electricity before touching components. If you’re thinking about it and haven’t built/repaired a computer before, I recommend buying a book on the subject or getting information off the internet. My own experience goes as far as completely breaking down (to the system board,) fixing, and rebuilding one of our old laptops and disemboweling a few old PCs. I got lucky enough to get in touch with someone who doesn’t mind dumpster diving computers being thrown out at the college where he works for me to practice on. This being said, I still wouldn’t feel completely comfortable with building my own without looking up a few things first.

I have been reading up on building computers for a while now so i think i have the knowledge to do it. I also have successfully upgraded the ram in my laptop and my dads desktop and reformatted my laptop. Ive bought old computers at garage sales and taken them apart and put them back together to. I have put together a wish list on newegg. If you want a link i can post it.

Go for it, and may the force be with you.

I really want to build a computer, but I don’t have much money. I really with I had the money, because building a computer sounds like lots of fun!

Dude, i know what you mean. Were both eleven so we obviously cant get a job. So, i am basically going to do two things: Save up my allowance and do work around the house for my parents for money.

I use to work building computers, it’s not hard if everything goes OK but if you have a bad part or incompatible part you could get into a lot of trouble. You can save about $100 by building. My new computer cost $1200 in parts at newegg. If you do build read all the doc’s and upload all new drivers.

I’m thinking about selling my old pokemon cards. Maybe that’ll get me some money. I’ve been looking everywhere for ways to make money (watching advertisements, reffering people to sites…etc) but they are all scams. I was thinking about writing an article or reveiw in make magazine about this kit that I got called a nerdkit Do you think they’ll let an 11 year old write an article?

Probably not as you are under 18 and can not sign a contract.

I saw in one volume a kid made a person out of broken zip drives and he was younger than me. Maybe I should check it out.

Wow! gives $25-$100 for a review! And they don’t have an age limit! Great!


WOW!! I might try that to!

Building your own computer is cheaper and will allow you to have exactly what you want for your budget. What you don’t get is technical support, your on your own.

Building a computer isn’t hard once you know the basics of computer parts and the port types. For example there are several different “connectors” for graphics cards, AGP, PCI, PCI-e, PCI-e 2.0, etc. You have to match the graphics card you intend to buy with the motherboard to make sure one will fit into the other. The same goes for RAM (DDR, DDR2, DDR3), CPU Socket (Intel or AMD?), hard drives (IDE, SCSI, SATA), etc.

I recommend you find a really old computer and just start playing around with it (try to use your brain a bit and you wont get hurt). Since it’s old, if you break it no one will care (assuming you asked first). Thats more or less how I learned.


Maybe this summer I’ll take appart my super old computer and check it out. maybe I’ll find useful parts, too. So to build a computer you just have a motherboard and plug in hard drives, ram, wifi antennas, ports and everything else, right? Then install the software?

We could both write articles! That would be cool! But they only give 250 words for reviews.:frowning:

But 25-100$ for typing 250 words… That’s not bad.

Yeah you pretty much got the computer thing.I think the key to computer building is to use most of you time searching for parts and information rather than just buying parts that you know nothing about. Also, search youtube for “how to build a computer” they have a TON of tutorials!

All Of My Desktop computers are custom built, but my Laptop is shelf bought because they are a pain in the . . … to custom build.

At 11 you would probably need some assistance because the slightest slip-up, and you could ruin the entire system speaking form experience ] and if not for assistance, just someone to check over your work at the final stage before you give it all 120 =p

picking out the pieces you could do yourself, as long as you know what you are doing, and what you are looking for.

Having gutted three old P.C.s, I can tell you this: the most useful somponents you’ll find are the power supplies, which are actually worth something still. For the most part; the graphics cards, network cards, and sound cards will be oudated and not that useful on a computer made before 2000. The procesor will be the same way. RAM is useful, although it’s pretty cheap now anyway. You can still use the hard drive, but most really old computers have about a 60 meg hard drive, and there are 2 terabyte SD cards around now. I’d say the best thing to do with old hard drives is to convert them to remote storage. CD drives aren’t bad, although some are better than others. Cables and connectors are always useful to have around. I would personally want to start with a new motherboard as well. In short, about 40 percent of the stuff you’ll find is still useful.