How Long Does It Take To Build A Gaming PC?

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how long does it take to build a gaming pc

If you are building your PC for the first time in your life, it may be quite intimidating for beginners. There are a lot of factors that can baffle your mind at first but hang on there, pc building is one of the fun and creative experience you can have in your life.

Pc building consists of a lot of components that might seem quite complex at first and you may get across this question in your mind at some point. How long does it take to build a PC? Am I ever gonna finish on time? Will I ever get the time to play?

I know I know, I am exaggerating a little bit but the first question you ask is a good question. There are some factors that you can consider before even thinking of building a PC.

Table of Contents show

What Type Of Build You’re Planning?


Before you even buy PC components, you need to be sure of what you are planning to build. It could be anything, if you are a hardcore gamer you would go for top-of-the-line specs to enjoy new games at max graphics.

If you are an artist or freelancer you will need high processing power to allow your PC to open and work on multiple programs at once.

You should keep your priority in mind and research what is the best build that you can afford in your current budget. Of course, you don’t want to spend money on something that is below average and couldn’t keep up according to your tasks.

gaming pc of Onur Binay
@Onur Binay

There are several options when it comes to buying a PC. if you scope out the PC market, you will find budget-friendly builds.

These builds are cheap and usually consist of old gen CPUs and GPU but it gets the job done. Primarily aimed towards office uses and casual gamers who play games like CSGO, DOTA 2, or Valorant.

Not everyone can afford high-range PC build and the current GPU shortage situation isn’t helping anyone. But don’t worry, you can still get a mid-range build that can play nearly every game at max settings and get your professional work done. You won’t be able to play games at higher resolutions than 1080p but that’s not the end of the world, right?

Intel i3 10th gen with RX 5500xt is one of the most affordable and popular builds among gamers right now. One of my friends who play Rainbow Six Siege daily uses this build and he has not encountered any problem yet so far. You can slap some good branded SSD and enjoy faster boot times.

But that’s not the end of the story, you can upgrade your current PC to higher specs if you are looking forward to many AAA titles coming in the next few years.

As newer games are released every year, 4K gaming is becoming standard nowadays among gamers and streamers. You would want yourself a high spec build to fully enjoy the latest games at their full graphical potential.

Not everyone could afford this but if you are saving your money for some time, you can invest in High tier specs. The newer gen RTX series is one of the best graphic cards around in the market right now. If you get your hand on one of these cards, build yourself something like i7 11700k, pair it with RTX 3080, and game on.


Is It Your First Time Building A Gaming PC?


Everyone has to start somewhere. There is always a beginning to everything. If you are new to pc building, you may be nervous about building a PC, buying components. Don’t worry this guide is solely for beginners to help them understand better how to buy a PC.

Before I proceed, I do want to mention that We have this stuff covered on our website neogamr.net with more guides and reviews on PC building. Do give it a try

There is a list of Do and Don’t you have to consider before picking up your hardware. Here is the list

  • PC casing is one of the most important components of a PC building. You want your hardware to be protected by dust, liquids at all costs. PC casing will also keep your pc cool during heavy workload.

    You can install intake and outtake fans to maintain positive and consistent airflow inside your PC. Always look for a spacious case that comes with options for proper ventilation
  • If you are on a budget and looking for a mid-tier build you shouldn’t compromise on PSU quality. PSU is the most crucial component inside your PC casing. High-efficiency PSUs are more expensive than your normal PSUs but you should not cheap out on buying a new PSU.

    The power supply unit keeps your PC art intact and running for a long time. It will also protect your computer against sudden power shortages and voltage fluctuations. Lower-grade PSU might die and in the process, your other components might fail
  • As I have mentioned above, proper ventilation and cooled PC case will increase the lifespan of your components. You must pick up the best kind of CPU cooling system. Your CPU is the brain of your PC and during heavy workload or long gaming sessions, it might overheat.

    A good CPU cooler will maintain operable temps for your CPU. a lesser quality CPU cooler might not keep up with the heat that your CPU is producing and as result, you will face frequent crashes, throttling, and lag.

How Long Does It Take To Build A Gaming PC?


Now on to the actual question that you have been asking yourself, how long does it take to build a PC?

Well there are different answers to this question, its uncertain to figure out the exact time that it takes to build a PC. for some people this is just a matter of minutes, on the other hand, inexperienced people might get confused or face some issues that may take a whole day to solve.

This is why I am here to discuss all the necessary things you need to keep in mind to follow the safe and smooth process of PC building. Let’s take a look


#1- Researching Your Components & Buying (If You Don’t Have Any) – Average Time (2-8 Hours)


No surprise here, research is the most important and also the very first key towards building your PC. before going to market you need to figure out what you want and why do you want.

image of a laptop on bed

There are a lot of options that will suit your needs but you can’t buy them all. You need to consider your budget and allocate your resources according to your needs.

The research will help understand the situation of the market and inform you about the availability of components you want.

Soon after you finish your research, it’s time to move on to the next step. Buying the components you singled out is the first step. You can visit your local tech market and buy them.

There is also the benefit of local warranty that some dealer provides if you visit their store and buy products face to face.


#2- Delivery Time – Average time (2- 10 Days)


It is convenient to find all the stuff you are wanting to buy on one website and by clicking one button all of your items are getting ready to deliver isn’t it?.

Many online stores provide discounts on various occasions like Black Friday. You can get components cheaper than your local market rates if you are pre-order during holiday sales.

You can also wait for newer gen products to arrive so retailers can drop down some prices or introduce stock clearance sales for previous-gen products.

image of some parcels at door step

However, depending on your residential location delivery time may vary, and also there is an issue of product availability.

if you are having issues finding it in your local market, you can order your desired product from another territory but it may take days depending on the stock, weather, and pandemic restrictions.

During shipping, there is a chance your products might get damaged, and if you want to claim a warranty you will have to wait a long time to get back on track with your PC building.

But if you are buying your goods from well-reputed websites you can sit back and relax without any worry.


#3- Organizing Your Components (If You’ve Already Purchased Everything) – Average Time (1-2 Hours)


Last but not least, this is the most fun part of the PC building adventure. You have bought everything you need. You will be assembling your PC after all the research and buying you have done. It may be a difficult task for a first-timer but learning is an essential step. yo

At first, you may feel intimidated or worried about damaging your stuff during installation but there is always an experienced person you can lean towards for help.

Image of pc build boxes

There are tons of tutorials you can watch or read our guides at neogamr.net where we have covered all the essential steps you should take before building your PC.

It may take up your whole day at first but if you want to be extra cautious and you want to proceed with care to avoid any issues there is nothing wrong with that. It is absolutely fine. you know the saying. “Better safe than sorry”.


#4- Unboxing And Gathering The Necessary Tools – Average Time (1-2 Hours)


Unboxing isn’t necessarily hard and it usually doesn’t take that much longer but you have to be careful and precise when unboxing components.

Some parts include little screws and nuts inside their package that are very crucial during building. Any missing screw will delay the process and you will spend more time finding accessories than building.

Image of a person connecting fans in pc

If you have all the right tools at your disposal and someone you know that is experienced in PC building, you will probably take no longer than 45 minutes.

But if you are a newcomer and this is your first time doing this, well it is safe to say that you are not going anywhere for the rest of the day.

You need a flat large clean surface, preferably a table. This is where you will start your building process. You need a large area and everything you need right in front of you. Standard and small-sized Philips screwdrivers will help screw and tighten things firmly so they won’t come apart.

Anti-static gloves are something not many people use but they won’t hurt if you wear them for your safety. It is used to prevent generating static between components that might kill them.


#5- Setting Up The Motherboard – Average Time (20 Minutes)


The motherboard is a circuit board that serves as the brain of all your components. There are a few things you need to consider before setting up the motherboard. Normally everything is installed on your motherboard first, before resting in down in the case.

That includes your processor chip, your memory rams, and your graphic card. But we can place it on the motherboard first in our case before installing our components. Both ways are correct. It comes down to preference.

image of asus z690 board

Find rectangular slots behind your PC case and remove one of the metal slides to make space for the motherboard’s rear I/O shield. Push your motherboard in the correct rear open slots and carefully rest it down in your PC case.

Make sure to match the corresponding hole for screws on your motherboard with your casing background. Align them accordingly by tightening them with right-sized screws.

Don’t apply too much pressure as it increases the risk of damaging your motherboard, once you are done, your motherboard is installed and we are ready to proceed to the next step.


#6- Setting Up The Processor & Applying The Thermal Paste – Average Time (10-15 Minutes)


Next comes the processor chip, your CPU goes right into your motherboard socket. If you have Intel CPU you need to slide the bracket out and then lift the arm so you can place your chip inside.

Place your chip and align the tiny yellow triangle on your socket with the tiny triangle on your bottom left side of the CPU. once done, slide back the bracket into its original palace and place it down the extension arm.

At this point, the plastic cover will pop out, make sure to keep it safe as you might want to sell your CPU in the future for an upgrade or any other reason.

showing the arrow that is on CPU
@MSI

Your CPU is in its right place but wait, there is something else that we are missing, something really important that is crucial for your CPU to boot and work properly. That’s right, a thermal paste.

Thermal is a liquid adhesive coolant that is applied on top of your CPU surface before placing down the heatsink, so your CPU won’t overheat during heavy workloads or long sessions of gaming. If you bought your CPU brand new, you don’t need to apply thermal paste on your CPU.

Image of come thermal paste on cpu
@MSI

Newer CPUs come with a stock cooler with the pre-applied thermal paste by the manufacturers and it is advised not to apply thermal paste on the CPU before putting down the heatsink to avoid mixing of a different kind of paste. Pre-applied thermal on the heatsink is fine and you can use that without any major worries.


#7- Installing The Cooling Systems – Average Time (20-30 Minutes)


If you are making a gaming pc for yourself, chances are it’s gonna run pretty hot. There is no doubt that PC tends to run hotter than usual when dealing with graphical rendering.

Whether you are playing a game or modeling a 3D render in Blender, your GPU and CPU will max out at 100% all the time, so if you are investing in a cooling system you are making the right choice for your PC. liquid cooling is ideal and popular among many gamers and streamers alike.

image of white 360mm aio
@Josh

The liquid cooling will keep your PC at constant cool temperatures overall especially if you are a gamer or streamer. Most cases have special mountings for cooling fans on the front or top.

The liquid cooling system comes with a radiator that is mountable on top. 240mm is the standard size that can easily fit into most cases.

Once you have fixed the radiator on the mounting, you can remove the stock heatsink from your CPU and install the liquid-powered cooler that is attached with a pipe to the radiator. The radiator will cycle distilled water through pipes into the cooler.

The most branded cooler comes with pre-applied paste Make sure to remove the old paste on the chip before installing the new Cooler.

Fill the radiator with distilled water and turn on your PC. Check for leaks from all connections and if it’s alright then you are good to go.


#8- Ram & Storages – Average Time (15-20 Minutes)


Next up on the list are memory and storage devices, if you look closely at the motherboard you will see thin slots right beside CPU. the slot count varies depending on your motherboard size. Mini itx boards usually have 2 slots instead of 4.

But in case you bought an ITX motherboard that includes 4 ram slots and you have 2 sticks of memory, always choose slot numbers 2 and 4.

You will see latches on each end of the slots. Pull them up and carefully place your memory sticks in those slots. Once they are in, gently give them a push until those latches click back up. Your ram is installed and ready to go.

showing correct ram slots for two ram sticks
@MSI

Now on to the storage devices, you got SSD and an HDD to install in your case. The newer casings usually include an SSD mounting bracket in front. You can either mount init the tray bracket or attach it to the PC case itself using screws.

Either way, it works and it is safe to use. Similarly, a 3.5 HDD is attached to the case using screws and then plugged with SATA power and SATA data cable to connect itself to the motherboard.


#9- Installing The Graphics Card (GPU) – Average Time (10 Minutes)


GPU is connected to the PC via a PCIe slot on the motherboard. It is one of the most important parts of PC building and it is quite easy to install.

After you have pulled your GPU from the anti-static bag, you will see two slots at the rear of the motherboard. One of them is the PCI-e slot where your GPU will be attached before you boot up your PC.

image of a gpu and cpu cooler
@Daniel Leżuch

Carefully open the metal latch at the back of your PC case and unscrew metal slots just like you have done before while installing the motherboard. Pull-on the latches on the PCI-e slot and lower down the GPU into the slot gradually.

Once you have placed the GPU in the respective slot, gently push GPU down until you hear the click sound. Your GPU is installed and latched into the slot. Plugin PCI-e connector that comes with the power supply unit and you are good to go.


#10- Instaling The Power Supply – Average Time (20 Minutes)


You shouldn’t skimp on power supply quality. If you ask me I will always insist on buying a good power supply unit even if you are going short on money, save a little more but don’t compromise on PSU. always go for higher efficiency ratings in PSU. i.e bronze or higher

In the rear end of the casing there is an opening for PSUs to fit in. first of place your PSU with its fan facing downward and carefully reverse it into the rear of your chassis. Once it is in its place, push it back slightly while attaching it with screws.

Now comes the wiring part, slip these cables into the back of your casing and then pull each cable close to their corresponding components through the holes on the motherboard.

You will need a 24 pin connector to power the motherboard, a SATA power cable for storage drives, and PCI-e power connectors for your GPU.


#11- Adjusting The PC Case – Average Time (10-40 Minutes)


Now after everything you have done, you are one step away from using your PC. however, before you boot up you need to make sure that everything is in check.

You can never be too careful. The first thing you do is close your PC case and inspect everything you have placed in your case.

image of a completed pc build

The last thing you did was to install a power supply unit, so the first thing you need to do is to make sure your power cables are connected to their respective components.

This is highly important because a slight mistake in wiring can cause a short circuit inside your case. Double-check every connector and make sure your GPU and rams are sitting correctly in their slots.

The CPU cooler is fitted properly and the fan power connector is connected to the motherboard. Take your time and monitor every component before firing up your computer there is no hurry. Better safe than sorry.


#12- Doing The Cable Management – Average Time (30-40 Minutes)


Most people don’t give enough attention to this aspect of pc building but in my opinion, this is as important as building your PC. Proper cable management inside your PC casing helps proper airflow to cycle through your casing fans.

A bundle of wires scattered throughout the casing will restrict air circulation. On top of that, impeccable cable management will always look appealing.to other eyes.

Manufacturers these days are serious about managing the cables inside your case. New casings are designed with different compartments to accommodate wire and cables without restricting the movement of airflow.

You need to buy some zip ties or velcro cuffs for tying up useless wires into one place. With little practice and effort, you can manage them efficiently and maybe show off your clean and sleek looing build to your friends.


#13- RGB Lighting – Average Time (40 Minutes)


Well, who doesn’t love bright and colorful lights? And when you incorporate these RGB lights into your Pc casing, the result is just beautiful and pleasing to look at.

These days it is all about RGB and the aesthetic of your Pc gaming case. If we talk about performance, it adds nothing but it will make your gaming setup look dazzling and cool.

corsair rgb strips

You can purchase some RGB strips (they are not expensive) that can be controlled by y remote and you can stick them inside your casing walls.

They come with double-sided tape that can easily stick to the roof of your pc casing where it is hidden from sight but your entire casing interior will be flooding with radiant dancing lights.

Most PC casing nowadays features prebuilt RGB fans and those casings further allow you to add more fans according to your choice. If your motherboard supports RGB sync, You can install more RGB fans and plug their headers into the motherboard.

This will give you complete control over the RGB lightning of your PC which can be further customized with compatible software. How cool is that?


#14- Installing The Operating System And Other Software – Average Time (1-4 Hours)


Now you have booted your PC, and congratulations, it is working. The display is up and everything you have done was correct. You should be proud of yourself. Now there is still some work to do. You need to install an OS (operating system) on your PC to work

Right now the most used and popular OS is Windows 10. This has fairly huge usage among gamers and streamers alike. It is optimized for games and every latest game supports Windows 10.

You need a bootable USB drive with windows 10 to install windows. Plugin the USB device and restart the PC. while your system is booting up, you need to press F12 or in some cases, escape F1 F2, or F10. You can figure it out and then try again.

Once you get into bios you will need to modify the boot order so your USB gets access. After that, you will windows installation tool dialog box open in front of you. Follow the instructions and you will be installing windows in no time. It doesn’t take that long.

After you have successfully installed your windows, make you’re way to install drivers first before doing anything. Since you have made your first PC, you will need different benchmarking software to run tests and check the performance of your system.

MSI Afterburner is one of the best software you can use for benchmarking games. It allows you to play the game and let you monitor your GPU and CPU stats at the same time.


#15- Troubleshooting – Average Time (1-4 Hours)


You may encounter some issues after you have built your PC, especially if this is your first gaming PC and you have built it yourself for the first.

Your PC may not boot up for some reason but don’t need to panic. There must be something that you might have missed or forgotten to do. It’s not the end of the world.

The first thing you need to check is the power cable plug. Is it plugged in? Or the socket you are plugging your computer in is working or not?

If everything is alright but your PC is not working, check the PSU switch. It’s a simple thing that many can miss and its not a big deal, just make sure the 1 side is pressed down at the rear of your PSU.

If your PC still refuses to turn on, check the motherboard power connector whether it’s plugged in or not. Detachable components like RAM, CPU, or GPU can be a major reason if they are not seated properly.

After double-checking every hardware, your PC finally boots up but shuts down immediately, there might be a chance that your CPU cooler is not seated properly and it’s causing your CPU to overheat to the point where your PC is throttling and shutting down on its own.

Adjusting and refitting the cooler will fix this problem and You will see the shine from your monitor screen light up your face.


Is It Cheaper To Build Or Buy A PC?


There is always a choice to make when you are buying a PC. you may be familiar with these terms “Pre-built” and “custom pc”. When you go to the market to buy your PC, you will face two choices. Either make your pc according to your need and choices or you can go and buy a previously built PC right off the shelf.

When you are building your PC you have the freedom and flexibility in choosing your parts. You can fine-tune your PC according to your requirements and needs. You can take your time looking for good money-saving deals that most websites offer during the holiday.

image of alienware pc

The main selling point of pre-built PCs is convenience. There is no hassle of collectings parts and then assembling the Pc. you can buy the machine, plug it in and play. That’s it.

Most pre-built manufacturers provide a warranty for their product so there is direct support and access to repairs if there is an issue with your PC.

Buying a pre-built pc is cheaper today, considering the rough situation of the GPU market. This wasn’t the case a few years ago but the tables have turned.

There is a chance that your preferred components are not available in the market but some manufacturers are selling those components in their pre-built setups.

You can buy the setup, take out the component you like, and sell the rest of the PC. it is more reliable and cheaper than buying from scalpers and miners.


Is It Hard To Build Your Gaming PC?


Building your gaming pc depends on your experience, your technical knowledge, and most importantly the availability of products.

Let’s just say, building a pc is not rocket science. Is it complex for someone new? Yes. is it impossible? No. an experienced person can build a pc in an hour and have it running in another.

If you are a newbie you might take e whole day, but at the end of the day you have learned something new and you have earned yourself some experience.

image of a person checking pc

By the time you will build your next Pc, you will be more efficient and manageable with your time. Your technical knowledge comes with experience and if you are not confident in yourself you can always consult a professional before attempting to build your PC.

As I have mentioned above in this article, the lack of availability of products is a big hindrance in the PC building process. With the situation of the PC market during the pandemic, people are considering to buy prebuilt PCs.

Building a pc is fun and super rewarding. PC building is stressful but something is satisfying about seeing everything come together in the end.


The Final Verdict:

PC building can be a tiring and long process. It could take over a day to a week. If you know what you are doing then it’s a piece of cake.

You can pick your favorite components, buy them, assemble them and start playing on your new PC in a single day. It all comes down to knowledge and experience. But that doesn’t mean you can’t do anything if you are new.

Remember everyone has to start from somewhere. If you are new to this world, make sure to dive deep into it before doing anything practical.

Do extensive research, watch youtube guides and tutorials, and consult with experienced people about DOs and DONTs. Anything that clouds your mind you should clear it.

You need to make sure your priorities are right and you are buying the right hardware at the right price. This could take time and honestly, you shouldn’t rush the process.

You need to make sure you are assembling your machine properly and buying everything you wanted. Wait for holidays deals to pop up so you can save up on money.

Spend the time, not the money. PC building might take days or even months of planning but in the end, you should be proud of yourself that you bought yourself a PC and built it with your own hands.


Frequently Asked Questions

#1 – Can a 10-year-old build a PC?

Anyone can build a PC if guided and consulted by professionals there is no age requirement for building a PC. it may be stressful or intimidating at first but by observing basic precautions and under the guidance of elders you can accomplish the task without any hurdle.

#2 – Can you build a PC for 1000?

There is no limit on how much you can spend money on PC building. You can spend 1000$ on a PC and get yourself a good entry-level 1440p gaming PC that can run any game on maxed-out settings at 1080p resolution and with some tuning, 1440p resolution.

#3 – Can a beginner build a PC?

Building your PC can be scary and overwhelming for a lot of people at the start but with the right amount of guidance and research, anyone can build a custom PC. Building your PC is a huge accomplishment.

#4 – What should I buy first when building a PC?

The first thing you should consider buying is Graphic Cards. The shortage of GPUs around the world right now is a serious issue so you should consider grabbing a graphic card first before it gets sold out.

#5 – Is it bad to buy a pre-built PC?

Prebuilt PCs are not a bad idea to go for. Many manufacturers provide additional warranties and customer support to their buyers. They cost more than custom-made PCs but they are easy to set up and ready to play right after you buy them.

#6 – Are Alienware computers good?

Alienware PCs offer above-average performance with good build quality. They have eye-catching looks but they are also super expensive.

If you are planning to buy Alienware PCs I suggest you look for discount deals or wait for holiday sales so you can enjoy the hefty discount.

#7 – Is it worth building a PC in 2022?

In this current era, we are facing a global shortage of silicon chips that is resulting in fewer GPU production. My advice is that you should avoid building a PC in 2022.

The prices are unbelievably high and there are serious stock shortages you will be lucky to find a high-end GPU at a fair price.

#8 – Is a $1000 PC good?

In this range, you can have various options ranging from low-end to mid-end gaming PCs. a 1000$ PC can run almost any game at maxed-out settings at 1080p resolution.

It is also considered an entry point in 1440p gaming. With some tweaks, you can enjoy 1440p games at high graphical settings.

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