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Should you build your own or buy a pre-built cheap computer system?

Your best computer can be self-built (build your own) or pre-built. The motherboard, memory and processor are the main parts that distinguish one computer system from another.

It is the quality of the parts that are used in a system that will establish its performance.

PC users are looking for computers (whether building their own or pre-built) that will perform well. You can click here and here to view a variety of cheap computer systems.

What is the difference between a self-built and pre-built computer?

Listed below are the advantages and disadvantages of a self-built and a pre-built cheap computer system:

Self-Built System


  • Being able to select your parts. Building will give you the opportunity of selecting the parts for the type of system that you want. Total control of features and cost.
  • Knowledge - Learning about your computer. Building will enable you to learn about the parts and be able to repair the system yourself.
  • Total control over the choice of your operating system.
  • You acquire a skill.
  • You can build your "'dream machine'.
  • Personal satisfaction. Building will be fun!
  • Building can save you the negativity of OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) and the use of proprietary parts. OEM replacement parts can cost as much as 4 to 5 times more.
  • You know exactly what's inside the case.
  • Most components that are purchased have individual one-year warranties. Therefore, if a component malfunctions (within the life of the warranty), it usually can be returned for a new one.

    Click here to learn to build your own cheap computer.

    You could also check out the Systemax PC BUILDER at Tiger Direct. Click here to view.

    You can also check out some other Systemax systems by clicking here. icon


  • Lack of technical support.
  • Parts used in building comes from various manufacturers and can be inconvenient for replacements.
  • Cost can sometimes be more than a pre-built computer.

Pre-Built System


  • Warranty from the computer manufacturer.
  • Technical support from the retailer/manufacturer.
  • Most times cheaper than self-built.
  • Can get a complete system which includes a monitor, keyboard, etc. (Ready right out of the box).

You can click here to look at computer systems. icon


  • Upgrading can be difficult or impossible.
  • Unsure of integrity of components.
  • Replacement of OEM parts can be expensive.
  • Requires proprietary components which may be obsolete.
  • Warranties are void if you open the case or interfere with any of the parts.

Summary - Your Best Cheap Computer
- Build or Buy?

Having discussed the pros and cons of buying vs. building your own cheap computer, the choice is still yours to make. But, in my humble opinion (IMHO), building is the way to go!

If you would like to learn to Build Your Own Cheap Computer using cheap compuer parts, browse here for a free step by step tutorial

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