Tech + Lifestyle

games, gear, and googleplexes (joke)

My First Computer Build

Maybe the title is a little misleading. While this is my first build, it isn’t really mine. I’m putting together a gaming rig for my friend Raymond, who has plenty of money available but not a ton of knowledge when it comes to computers. I’m by no means an expert, but I’ve upgraded computers quite a few times, throwing in new hard drives, memory, graphics/sound/wireless cards, etc. From time to time I’ve performed hard drive reformats, and I seem to have become 24-hour tech support for my family and friends. Raymond happens to be the most recent example, and I’m excited to challenge myself (and a little encouraged by how many people online state that “any idiot with a screwdriver and a how-to guide can build a computer”).

My friend Raymond

This is Raymond

Here’s a little background info: several years ago, Raymond bought a fully loaded Alienware gaming laptop.  It was working well for a while, but started giving him problems lately – a few blue screens of death, odd messages at bootup, that sort of thing. A few days ago he gave me a call saying it wouldn’t boot, and that it gave him a weird message and the hard drive made “funny clicking noises”. Basically, his drive was shot. We went onto to order a replacement drive, and next thing I know we’re ordering him $2500 of computer parts! Frankly, I couldn’t be happier, because I’ve been wanted to try a full build for a while, but never had the funds available to do so. I still don’t have the money, but at least now I can put a gaming rig together and get that experience under my belt. I’ve got a lifeline in case I screw anything up; my friend Josh works in IT and agreed to bail me out if I get stuck. The parts have started to arrive (one of his monitors came in yesterday, and most of the parts arrived this morning), and the rest should be delivered shortly. The following is a list of the components I’m using for this build:

Case: Antec P182 ATX Mid Tower

Power Supply: PC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 Watt

Motherboard: Gigabyte EP45-DS3R

Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E8500

CPU Cooler: Zalman CNPS9700 LED

Memory: Corsair Dominator 4 GB (2×2) DDR2-1066 MHz

Hard Drives: WD VelociRaptor 300 GB 10k RPM, Samsung Spinpoint F1 1TB 7200 RPM

CD/DVD/Blu-ray Drive: Pioneer BDC-202BK Blu-ray Combo Model

Flash Reader: Sabrent CRW-UINB USB 2.0 Internal Card Reader

Video Card: PowerColor HD 4870

Monitors: Dell E248WFP 24″ widescreen, HannsG JC-199APB 19″ full screen

More to come later. I’m still missing the Blu-ray drive and his copy of Vista Home Premium. Hopefully they will arrive later today; I’d like to get started on this over the weekend. I would have included prices, but most of them have since changed. Click on the links to check out each product over at Newegg (exception: the Dell monitor was purchased at a Best Buy brick and mortar location). The building process will probably be spread out over four or five more entries, so check back periodically for further updates!


August 29, 2008 - Posted by | Tech | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

1 Comment »

  1. […] ago, but I’ve been too busy with school to write up a decent post on it. I previously wrote one post about ordering the parts for it, and another with a few teaser pics of my work area. Now I’ll finally get into it. Here we […]

    Pingback by Computer Build Part One - Choosing Your Components « Tech + Lifestyle: Enhance Your World | September 20, 2008 | Reply

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