Help Choosing a Pre-built Gaming PC Please


For some people pre-built is the hair-preserving option :)


They should just make the entire case out of Thermal paste, then we wouldn’t have to worry about it!


I avoided doing a build for the longest time. I worried about damaging a cpu, mostly. But with the newer sockets, even that is easy.


Everything seems so much easier now, and I don’t think it’s because I do it every handful of years. I used to terrified at the idea of breaking a pin on a CPU, especially AMD, but this last round, I felt like I was asking myself why I was afraid.


Yeah, I mean, you can only place the cpu in one orientation, then you pull the little lever down. Done. I was still nervous about doing the thermal paste right, but it worked out ok.


If i remember right, and this is pulling memory banks here, the Athlon XP chips had a number of reports of cracking. It wasn’t an unfounded fear not so long ago.


Oh, believe me, you can place them in more than one orientation.

Just like you can forget that a videocard has a little push button slide that locks it into place that you have to pop down to release. Because it is hidden because the video card is so gigantic. Ask me how I know this.


I’ve done quite a few builds, and I still get nervous pushing that level into position.


Heh, if you mean forgetting you have to pop the lever down to release, I’ve done that too.

Well, let me amend that to say the one time I did it, iirc, the cpu had a notch in one corner, so it could only go one way. Can’t speak for every configuration.


This conversation just makes me happier that I paid someone else to deal with all this nonsense. ;)


I feel like before i was nervous, this time there was a clear arrow on it and it wasn’t really dependent on me remembering.

Sometimes I feel like i have to apply more pressure than I am comfortable with to get that click. But you know what really took the weight off, knowing I could replace it if I really screwed it up. I didn’t have that feeling most my life.


I’ve had that issue too. But this is not seating it and getting the click. This is remembering that buried under that video card and giant built-in fan, there’s some little lever you have to shove down that you need to shove down in order to get the video card back out. On an old computer, I had put the video card in years earlier, and forgotten that the little lever existed. I could not see it (because it was completely covered by the massive video card), so I forgot it existed and couldn’t figure out why I couldn’t easily pull the card out.

I almost did the same thing when I needed to remove the card in the new build. Maybe I just have fat fingers, but even when I remembered it, I could barely get to the thing (and felt like I was basically rubbing my hand along the motherboard trying to find it).


Yeah I know what your’e talking about. I forget that lever too. I don’t have small hands but they piano long, I am told, and lady hands and it’s still kind of a pain in the ass. Actually, when I am building my computers I always think the same thing, how do guess fit their hands in these tiny ass little spaces and why the hell is it so tight!

This year I got a Fractal case which I loved working in, nicely designed and roomy, for a case. Still I question some choices. I sent a similar one to my sister so her SO can hate building less. If she bought it, she would’t pay the extra for silence, good airflow and especially room since she doesn’t do the work herself.


On a related note, the polar vortex (aka regular winter in Canada) is 9 degrees cooler for CPU temps, so there’s that upside.


This is where I went for my components last year. They were competitive with online prices and had everything in stock for easy one stop shopping. I’d recommend them over Frys, which seems to have been coasting for the last few years.


I’m going to attempt a dual watercooling rig (I finally decided the first round of thin, Turing-based 17” high-refresh laptops are too screen-compromised since 1080P was the only resolution ready for these ultra-thin bezel models for now — I’ll wait for 1440P to start showing up to look again).

2080 Ti & 9900K in the smallest case I can fit it all into, which will be either an NZXT 200i or a Louqe Ghost S1. The GPU comes with a built-in AIO 120mm cooler (FTW3 Hybrid) — getting the notification yesterday that those were available was the event that finally kicked off this build. I’m going to use a 240mm AIO for the CPU.

If we had a Microcenter or equivalent in the Bay Area I’d have considered going with them, but I do still enjoy building these and the space (and optimizing for a quiet build) should make for an interesting challenge.

If anyone spots a small puff of smoke over Mission Bay: oops!


Hey, I got a Fractal case too! I agree, it was relatively pleasant to work with as far as cases go. I like the airflow of it too (at least it seems like it has a lot of room for airflow and a lot of good exhaust/mesh coverage.


I still sweat over mounting the CPU heatsink/fan/cooler in addition to those teeny tiny mobo-case wires. It’s not an irrational fear.


Ditto. I check about 100 times from all angles to make sure the CPU cooler is fully seated, and I’ve only ever used the Intel retail coolers with thermal material already applied.


The parts are all either delivered or on the truck. Can’t wait to put this together tonight:

Core i9 9900K
EVGA 2080 TI FTW3 Ultra Hybrid
Asus ROG Strix Z390-I mitx motherboard
NZXT 200i (mini-itx case)
NZXT Kraken X52 (240mm AIO watercooler)
Seasonic Focus 650W SFX-L PS
16GB PC3200 (g.skill)
2x 9700 Evo m.2 500GB

And an LG 34" widescreen gaming monitor with Freesync2 (HDR and 144hz, compared to 120z and no HDR for their Gsync model — still wasn’t an easy choice though).

I’m stoked :)