Posts in Category: how to

The Biggest Challenges of Building a PC (and How to Solve Them)

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You’ve got all your PC parts together. How do you ensure building them is a smooth process? Start by reading this.

Building a PC is generally not too difficult, though it can certainly feel daunting the first time. With a good guide and a screwdriver, it should only take a matter of hours — or even less — to transform a bunch of carefully selected parts into the system of your dreams.

When building a PC, there are definitely certain parts that are harder than others. Here, we describe four of the most challenging aspects of building a PC (suggested by our social media communities on Facebook and Twitter), and then provide some tips for how to avoid them.

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How to Benchmark Your PC: Best Benchmarking Software (Free and Paid)

James
Nov

Novabench, one of many popular PC benchmarking tools.

Benchmarking is the act of running a computer through a series of predetermined tests or program operations to assess its overall performance. With benchmarking, you can gauge the performance of your PC hardware to ensure everything is performing as designed. Think of it as putting your computer through a test that assigns a score, so that you can compare your hardware’s performance relative to other computers.

Benchmarking your PC can also help you to identify any potential vulnerabilities. As this article from the University of Alabama Birmingham claims, it is no secret that cybercrime is on the rise, so for peace of mind, if you use your computer for personal or business purposes it is wise to do everything in your power to keep your technology secure.

There are a variety of ways to benchmark a PC, with specific methods focusing on the PC as a whole, or specific components, such as the graphics card, CPU, or SSD. Broadly speaking, benchmarking methods fall into one of two categories: Synthetic or Real World.

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The Ultimate Guide to Buying a Computer Mouse

The average PC user spends several hours a day touching a computer mouse, making it one of the most critical computer peripherals. And yet, few PC users spend much time considering mice before purchasing one that they’ll end up using for years. It can be interesting to learn more about specific models of a mouse at places similar to Review Loft, check them out.

Today, PC users have an enormous variety of mice to choose from, as well as numerous factors to consider before choosing the best mouse for them. Everyone’s hand is a little different, so it makes sense that different hands may prefer different mice.

This guide should serve as a primer to help find your hand the best possible mouse companion. We’ve separated the guide into four sections based on the four main criteria to consider when selecting a mouse: comfort, precision, button layout, and extra features.

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How to Stream PC Games on Twitch

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You’ve built your gaming PC that possibly features an SSD for speed, you probably know the difference between WD Green vs Blue, and now you want to start streaming on Twitch. We’re here to help. (If you haven’t built yourself a streaming PC, read our Guide to Building a PC for Game Streaming.)

This quick guide should take you from a streaming novice to confident broadcaster. Don’t forget that if you’re using a public internet connection, find the best vpn for streaming so that you’re secure.

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PC Build: $1,200 Mini ITX 1440p Gaming PC

Thermaltake Core V1

Thermaltake Core V1

When putting this build together, I wanted to build a Mini ITX PC that can play almost any game at 1440p at 60 FPS with Ultra settings. I allocated a budget of $1,200 and picked parts accordingly.

This is a Haswell build, but I’ve provided alternative options for Skylake, at a slightly higher price.

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PC Build: $1,750 Mini ITX Beast Gaming PC

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Gonzo65’s 901 Build

Inspired by the Holiday sales, I decided to put together a quiet, clean, small Mini ITX build to handle any current game at max settings at 2560×1440. Total build price: $1,750.

It’s a little more expensive and harder to put together than a comparable full-sized build, but it turns out gorgeous and powerful.

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The 6 Best Free Programs for Stress Testing Your PC

James
Your build is complete, but can is it cut out for the job?

Build complete, but can it handle the stress?

Very few things in life are more satisfying than assembling all the parts to a new PC, hitting the power button, and watching it boot up properly.

But even if your build starts up and seems to work without problems, you might want to make sure all the components are fully functional. Does your graphics card pump out pretty pictures at the level promised by the manufacturer? Does your RAM operate consistently for hours on end? Does your CPU process the desired number of ones and zeroes under intense loads without overheating?

To answer these questions, we turn to stress testing: Making sure that all of your parts can handle the work that they’re designed to do (or overclocked to do). They might be fine under normal use, but you want to know that they’ll be able to handle heavier tasks down the road, such as high-end gaming or media editing.

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How to Build a PC for Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, and VR Gaming

James

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As we approach the Q1 2016 release dates for the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, many PC gamers are wondering how to best prepare their computer for VR gaming, while others are planning new builds from the ground up. We would know: Every year, more than a million visitors come to our website looking to build the best PC for their budget, and an increasing number of them ask us about VR headsets.

We just published a Guide to Building a PC for Virtual Reality. (Click the link to see the real guide.)

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What is a Graphics Card? How Do You Choose a Good One?

If you’re anything like us, then the graphics card is your favorite part of a computer. Graphics cards let your computer do awesome things like super complex computations, physics processing, and most importantly, producing shiny graphics in games.

So, what is a graphics card, and how do you figure out which one you should buy?

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