Absolutely the truth about building your own computer – the only way to go if you want top quality parts. Even the most expensive computers on the market cut corners to make a profit.
I’ve been building them since the 90s and have never bought a brand name computer. If you want to build your own, here are some pointers:
Last time I heard, AMD wasn’t doing that well. I’ve always stuck with Intel, but tried AMD on my last build since they were ahead of the game at the time. I’ve been very pleased with it so far. Even hough they are cheaper, the products are quality and I’ll consider going AMD again (if they’re still around). Whatever decision you make will determine the type of motherboard you purchase because of the CPU socket. Lastly, AMD is a much better chip to overclock (and has a more lively overclocking community) than Intel.
MB – Asus if #1. I tried a Gigabyte last time and was disappointed. The main thing to shop for here is ram capacity and Front Side Bus Speed (how fast the CPU can talk to the board).
SSD – brand names here are pretty much whatever memory company you trust. I like Kingston, but Corsair is great as well. The main reason you’ll want an SSD over a mechanical drive is speed. However, these things are not indestructible and don’t give any warning signs before bricking themselves like mechanical drives. You’ll want a large mechanical drive on the sidelines for your backup.
RAM – I’ve been running tons of programs while 3D rendering in the background using only 12GB without any issues at all. There isn’t any point any putting a ton of ram on your system, throw your money at one of the most important components in the computer:
Video Card – To get a pro video card means you’ll need lots of power. Plan on buying at least an 800W power supply. Cooler Master is my favorite here, but Antec is another good one. With the video card I’ve done both high end ATI and nvidia and like nvidia better. These can get expensive – costing more than an average laptop, but is well worth it.
Mechanical Keyboard – Keyboards from the 80s were built a million times better than the junk they sell today. Spend a couple hundred and get a nice mechanical keyboard (especially if you do a lot of typing like coding or writing, etc). They’re much better for your hands, and have that nostalgic clicky sound Razor has a lot of good options.
Don’t be intimidated by just buying the parts and putting them together, it’s a lot fun and will save you so much frustration and money in the long run…. and it’s always nice to know exactly what is inside your machine.
What are you wanting to do with it?
Compare the specs of the Dell XPS 8700 with the (similarly priced model) Macbook Pro…
Macbook Pro $1299 2.4GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processor (Turbo Boost up to 2.9GHz) with 3MB shared L3 cache
XPS 8700 $1099 4th Generation Intel® Core™ i7-4770 Processor (8M Cache, 3.4 GHz)
I’m not recommending the Dell, but if you decide to get that one, you’ll want to put an SSD in it.