Answering some PC Building Questions

In this post, I'll answer some of the common questions that most people ask when they're buying a desktop PC. Note that, I'll emphasize on the most ideal or sensible choice but your budget might restrict you from doing so. Therefore you must ask yourself that where can I make compromises without risking the overall quality of your build.

AMD or Intel?

One of the the biggest question since AMD introduced their Ryzen lineup. As I already mentioned in one of my previous posts, it depends on your budget and your requirements. But to summarize, Intel is more suitable for the people willing to spend extra to get better single core performance(example, hardcore gamers). AMD, on the other hand, offers value for money. If multi-core multi-threaded workloads are more of your thing(example, video editing) then AMD provides much better performance than a similarly priced Intel processor.

Stock vs Aftermarket cooler?

If you watch any PC Building tutorial on YouTube then you'll see most of them will use stock coolers with AMD build. But don't forget the fact that we live in India. Where temperatures in summer easily crosses 40°C in most of the cities. So if you don't have AC in your room then you'd definitely wanna use an aftermarket cooler. Because with stock cooler, you'll see temperatures hitting 80-90°C in summer.
stock vs aftermarket coolers

On top of that, those high temperatures can cause thermal throttling. What is thermal throttling you might ask. If you Google any processor model, you'll see a base clock and a boost/turbo clock. That boost/turbo clock is the highest speed a processor can achieve without overclocking if and only if the CPU temperatures are ideal(usually below 70°C). That why you might have seen people asking, "me and my friend have the same CPU and GPU but he gets higher FPS in same game".

Air vs Liquid Cooling

Now you know why aftermarket coolers are important, you might face a new dilemma. Some people will recommend Air coolers, others will recommend liquid cooler. Most people(including myself) prefer air coolers because they're cheap and more reliable. If you don't plan to do overclocking then definitely save your money by getting a good air coolers. But, if you plan to overclock or just want to run you CPU more cool, then you can get a liquid cooler from a reputed brand. Emphasis on the term reputed, because a liquid cooler have multiple points of failure. If you buy a cheap liquid cooler just because they're usually better than air cooler, you might be throwing away your money on cheap brands. Corsair, Cooler Master and NZXT liquid coolers(AIO) are highly recommended.

2.5in vs M.2 vs NVMe SSD

In early days, owning a SSD was a privilege. 32GB SSD used to cost more than an average person's desktop/laptop. But now you can buy 240GB SSD for the price of 1TB HDD. It might still seem expensive but do keep in mind that the SSDs are upto 10 times faster than HDD. There are many features that can distinguish SSDs from one another, but a general consumer is concerned with 3 major kinds. These are 2.5in SATA SSD, M.2 SATA SSD and M.2 PCIe/NVMe SSD.
2.5in SATA : 2.5in in the general size and SATA is the interface. SATA III is the current revision and it supports at most 600MBps write speeds. So no matter how expensive 2.5in SSD you'll buy, the max speed you'll get is limited to 600MBps, which is not slow by any means for general user.
SATA vs M.2
M.2 SATA : These are the cheapest M.2 connector SSD. They're are just like your standard 2.5in SATA SSD in a different packaging. So the speeds are usually same, ie 600MBps max. There is a myth popular among people that M.2 SATA SSD are faster than 2.5in SSD. They're not, it's just the quality of chip and controllers. Just like some 2.5in SSD give 300-350MBps but other 2.5in SSD can reach over 500-550MBps, similarly M.2 SATA SSD can be slow and fast.
SATA vs M.2
M.2 NVMe : These SSDs make use of PCIe lanes for data transfer. Therefore, even the worst quality consumer M.2 NVMe SSD will give atleast 1.5GBps speeds. Therefore they're more expensive as well.
SATA vs M.2

Should you buy cheaper PSU from local brands?

Definitely not if you can afford more trusted brands. The only times you should consider local PSU manufacturers when you're building low budget PC. Like under ₹30,000 PC build. Remember, do not buy any PSU that costs less than ₹2000.

Does case/cabinet matters? 

Yes. You'll not only get better build quality from reputed brands but also good airflow designs. If you building a PC with low end components(like dual core locked processors) then it will not matter that much, just having one exhaust fan is enough. But if you're building a mid-high end PC with dedicated graphics card then a proper cabinet with well designed intake and exhaust is mandatory. 

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