April 21, 2019

– Hey guys, this is Austin, and today I’m here with my 2017 Gaming PC build tutorial. If you guys have never built a computer before, it is really straight forward, but I’m gonna walk you through step by step. Also, I sound like some infomercial guy.

Call now for your three quick tips on how to build yourself a Gaming PC. For tools, it’s pretty straight forward. All you need is a Phillips screwdriver. Now, beyond that you need to have a decent sized workspace, so I’m going to be using this table. As long as you have an area that’s big enough to set out your parts, you’re fine.

Beyond that, you should if possible, do this in an area without carpet, as static electricity is not a good thing with PC parts. The first step is to grab your case and pull it out of the box. Now this is by far our biggest component, and this is, as the case name implies, where all of our parts end up going. So this is the case. Now the first step here is just gonna be opening it up.

So around back, there are gonna be four screws, and all it’s gonna allow us to do is take off the side panels. Inside here, all we need to do is get all of our cables out, so this is what’s going to go into the motherboard later. We also have a little bit of hardware as well as some cable ties for our cable management. The first thing to install is gonna be our power supply.

This is the literal heart of our build, and one of the most important things when picking a power supply is to get a high quality unit. There are lots of very cheap units that say they have a lot of power, but really you should be looking for something with an 80 plus rating, whether it’s 80 plus, bronze, gold, silver, whatever. That means that you’re going to at least get something with decent quality.

Inside the power supply box, not only do we actually have the supply itself, but we also have the cable as well as we have a few extra little accessories. The most important thing here, is we have four little screws that we were going to use to actually mount the supply in. Something else to keep in mind when picking up a power supply is modular versus non-modular. This guy is non-modular, and these are typically cheaper.

And the only thing that that really means is whether the cables are attached or not. For this system we have plenty of room for cable management inside. So it really doesn’t matter that we have a bunch of extra cables that we aren’t going to use, especially if you’re doing a smaller system where every little bit of space matters, you may want to spend just a little bit extra to pick up a modular supply. Installing the power supply is pretty straight forward. One thing you do need to watch out for is where the fan is.

This always needs access to cool air. So cases will actually handle this a little bit differently sometimes. Some cases will actually put it on the top, which means that you should have the fan facing upward. But for this guy, since we are going to be putting it on the bottom, it’s simple as putting the fan face down, lining it up and it should just slide right into place.

To get this guy in place, all we need to do is use the four screws that it comes with, and there are going to be corresponding holes on the case. All I need to do is just get this in, you don’t have to do it super tight or anything. But, once we get these guys in place, the power supply is not going to be going anywhere. One little tip when it comes to pretty much screwing anything in, is you want to use a cross pattern. I’m gonna do this one, then this one, then this one. This just helps that, pretty much any time you’re mounting hardware, to make sure that you’re applying even pressure instead of just doing one side and it’s maybe slightly out of place.

That is all we have to do with the power supply for now. The next step is to move our case out of the way and grab our motherboard. This might not look like much, but it is essentially what everything in the computer connects to. This is the motherboard. There are different sizes of motherboards, and that is something that you definitely want to pay attention to before you actually pick out all the parts for your build.

This is the sort of medium sized, it’s known as Micro ATX. Now thankfully, with this case, it actually supports full sized ATX, so pretty much any sized motherboard will fit. This is definitely something you want to look out for before you actually buy all the parts for your build.

Before we get this installed, let me quickly run you through all the different sort of slots and ports and things that we’re going to be using for the build. To start with, we have the CPU socket. Pretty self explanatory, this is where our CPU is going to go. Beside that, we have our memory slots. This board has two, but some do have four. Essentially this is where our RAM goes.

We also do have our PCI slot down here. Different motherboards will have different amounts of PCI slots, but this is generally speaking where you’re going to put a graphics card, and sometimes you’re going to put other add-in cards, so just something like a network card or Wi-Fi card. Beside the memory, we have four SATA ports. These are going to be used for things such as installing our SSD, maybe a hard drive or even an optical drive. And over beside that, we have our M2 slot. This is a newer motherboard, not all motherboards are going to have this.

But this is going to be if you want to install a newer, faster SSD. We’re not taking advantage of it for this build, but the motherboard does support it. Now, if you actually want to flip the motherboard around, you’re going to see that over here we have all of our ports. These are going to be what’s going to stick out the back of the case.

Say you want to plug in something like USB or ethernet or whatever, that’s where all of these are going to go. We’re also going to have to get power to our motherboard. So first of all we have our 20+4 pin, so this is going to provide most of the power for pretty much everything on the board. And we also have either a four or an eight pin CPU power connector.

This board has an eight pin, but it works the exact same way. Next it’s time to install the processor. This is going to be a little different depending on whether you’re using Intel or AMD, but I’ll walk you through it on both sides, it’s basically the same process. Inside, we’re going to have some paperwork which we don’t need at all, as well as our CPU cooler and processor. You want to be a little bit careful with the cooler. Not so much the top, but on the bottom there’s going to be a little bit of pre-applied thermal paste.

Do not touch that. And inside this little plastic piece here, we have the processor itself. You actually do want to be careful with this guy. When you’re handling a processor, you always want to grab it from the sides.

Do not touch any of these little pads. It’s especially important with AMD processors, ’cause instead of having pads, they have pins and if any of those get bent, you are in serious trouble. One thing to look for on the bottom of the processor is this tiny little gold arrow. That’s going to match up with a corresponding arrow on the processor socket, making sure that you’re not going to put this in sideways or upside down. It’s pretty straight forward to install.

You just need to pull the arm back and open up the socket, line our CPU up, being very careful not to drop it too hard. And then, once it’s in place, we just need to push this arm back into place and our CPU is installed. Pretty easy.

The next step is putting on the heat sink. Again, this is going to be pretty straight forward. There are going to be four pins which will line up to the corresponding notches on the motherboard. All we need to do is line it up, making sure that we don’t actually let that thermal paste touch yet.

And then, once it’s in place, all we need to do is just press it in until it clicks. Then we just have to plug in the fan. We just need to unwind the fan header from around our CPU cooler. For this motherboard, we’re going to be plugging it in right here, however because the cable’s just a little bit long, what I like to do is actually just tie a little bit of a knot to get rid of some of the slack. Now, the actual fan header itself will only go in one way because of these two little notches. So, if we line it up and press it in, tuck our cable out of the way, and we’re pretty much good to go.

The next step is installing our memory. This is going to be pretty straight forward. There are different types of RAM that you need to look out for. Most newer systems, this one included are going to be using DDR4 memory. But if you’re doing a slightly older system that will be using DDR3, it’s basically the same thing as far as installing. It might sound obvious, but if you have a DDR4 motherboard you have to use DDR4 RAM and vice versa with DDR3.

Now, it can be a little tricky because these do look very similar, but DDR4 does have a different pin layout. What is pretty much the same between the two, is there’s going to be a little notch about two thirds of the way down the memory. That’s going to correspond to a matching notch on the motherboard, so this is only going to go in one way.

All I need to do is line it up, and just press down firmly (clicking) until you get the click, and your memory is installed. Before we’re ready to actually install our motherboard though, we want to get the IO shield ready. This is what’s going to essentially go over the ports right here, but instead of putting on the motherboard, we’re actually going to put it on the case.

You do want to make sure that the shield is facing the correct orientation. Once you get it, all you do is just line it up with the back of your case, and once you do, just pop it right in. (clicking) that sounded a lot more violent than it actually was.

Next, go into the bag of hardware that comes with your case. Inside we’re going to find these standoffs. These are going to be what we actually use to mount the motherboard.

On one side we’re going to screw them into the case and on the other we’re going to mount the motherboard. As I shall now demonstrate with my wonderful assistant Wes, all you need to do is first take the motherboard and just kind of test fit it in here. Don’t let it all the way down. What you can do is you can see that we have six holes on the motherboard, and that’s going to line up with the six holes that are going to be in the case. Now because this is a bigger case meant for ATX motherboards, you’ll see we have a bunch of extra holes. All we need to do is put the standoffs in the correct locations.

So with the standoffs, all you need to do is just get them in finger tight, they don’t have to be super super hard in there. But, again, just make sure that you get all the standoffs in the right locations. The next step is removing our PCI covers.

This case actually does it a little differently than most. Essentially right back here is where our graphics card is going to go. And typically you would just unscrew it and take it out, however with this case, we actually have to just push them out of place.

(clicking) There we go. (chuckling) That was way harder than it should be. So, once you get the first one out, it’s not so bad, but if you get a case that actually just will allow you to unscrew it, that makes things a lot simpler, otherwise you just have to wiggle it back and forth until it pops out. All we have to do now is just take our motherboard, line it up with our standoffs, and pay careful attention to the IO shield, you want to make sure that all the ports are going to be fully visible through the back, which they are. Once you have it lined up, then you just have to screw it in place.

So, we have a little bag of screws here. Most of the time, cases will actually have lots of different very similar looking screws, so it might take a little bit of trial and error. But just get a few of these screws out, and we should get this guy into place.

This is definitely a time when you want to use cross-threading on your screws. Say if you want to do one side and then the other, what can happen is the board will actually slightly shift. So just do one corner, then go to the opposite corner, opposite corner, opposite corner, until you make sure that the board is all the way in place. For this build we are using an SSD instead of a hard drive, but the process of installing and especially cabling it is basically the exact same thing. The biggest difference is an SSD is just going to be a physically smaller drive, which means they use slightly different mounting points. With this case we’re going to be using the full three and a half inch drive bay, which is typically used for bigger hard drives, however we do have the mounting points for an SSD.

The only thing you have to watch out for here is to make sure that the connectors for the SSD are going to be facing backward toward the back of the case otherwise your cable management is going to be challenged. (chuckling) Once you’ve lined the SSD up, it’s as simple as just using a few screws to hold it into place, and this guy isn’t going anywhere. Then we just slide our SSD into the case, and that’s pretty much it. We are almost done with putting hardware in the case.

The next step is to start with our wiring. This can look a little intimidating, but it’s really not that bad. To start with, we can find the little three pin connector from our fan, and all we need to do is just plug that into the system fan header on the top left of the board.

There’s a lot of extra slack here, so we’re going to just tuck that around, ’cause you know, totally no one’s gonna notice that, right? Now we have to find the 20+4 pin connector from our power supply. That’s going to be probably the biggest one out of all your power supply cables.

So just note that there’s going to be a little clip on the side. All you need to do is just line it up with the larger connector on the motherboard, and just press it until it clicks into place. Working our way down the right side of the motherboard, we now need to go and pull all these cables that are connected to the case. For here, in this build, we have a USB3 header. So there’s one USB 3.0 port on the front of the case. Now this is a little bit of a tricky connector, mostly because if you get it kinda stuck, I’ve actually seen that the whole front of this will actually pull off, so you definitely want to make sure that you kind of line it up correctly.

But just like the other one, there’s going to be a little notch, so it’s only going to go in one way. So, if we just plug it into our USB 3.0 header right here, again, just press it into place and we should be good. While we’re here, let’s plug in the front panel connectors.

These are the tiny little connectors that are going to be running from the front of the case. Essentially this is going to allow things like the power button to work, any LED’s, that kind of stuff. Now, these are all going to be labeled, so there’s going to be a positive and negative. That’s going to correspond to whatever it says, either on the actual connectors on the bottom right of the board, or if you just check the owner’s manual, that will also give you the exact diagram. For here, we actually only have four of these. So if we line it up, it should just go right into place.

This case also has a couple of USB 2.0 ports, which is what this cable is for. This is a pretty straight forward connector, so it actually has one pin knocked out, so you can only put it in one way. And for this case, we’re just going to plug it in to the white header here. So we just line it up, and press it all the way in, simple as that. Last but not least, we have the audio connector.

So, as the name implies, it is going to allow the headphone and microphone jack on the front of the case to work. And just like the USB port, there’s going to be one little pin that’s knocked out, so you can’t put it in the wrong way. So, just line it up, press it in, and we’re done with the little fiddly stuff.

We’re almost ready to install the graphics card, but before we do that, we just need to plug in the CPU power connector. So it’s basically two four pins that can go together as an eight pin. With this board, we need to use both, but a lot of motherboards, you only have to plug one in.

Now is the fun part, this is our graphics card. So, with a Gaming PC, when it comes to picking parts that really impact gaming performance, the graphics card really is pretty much the most important part. Now, a graphics card isn’t especially fragile, so you don’t have to be super careful with it, but generally speaking, you should touch it by the plastic bit or the metal as opposed to the board on the back. This is about as small as a graphics card gets, but it works the exact same way even if you have a much larger, more expensive card.

What you do is flip it around so that you have the board on the top, and once you have your PCI slot and your cover’s open, just line it up, and all you need to do is press it until it clicks into place. All we have to do is just make sure the graphics card is lined up with the holes on the side of the case, and just screw it into place. So we’re gonna use two screws to do this, and that’s pretty much it.

Because this is a little bit of a lower powered graphics card, we actually don’t need to do anything else. But for most graphics cards, you’re also going to want to run a six pin connector from your power supply, it’s gonna look a little something like this, and plug it in. But again, with this card, we plug it in and it’s good to go. We are almost there.

Next step is to pull out the SATA cables that came with the motherboard, and all you need to do is grab one end and plug it into the board right here. These are notched, so they’re definitely not going to go in the wrong way. And then, if we wrap the cable around back so it doesn’t get in our way. Then we just plug the data cable into the back of the SSD.

It’s going to be the smaller port and this guy’s going to click in place, and that’s pretty much it. Now we just have to run power. So going back to the power supply, we have these SATA leads. So, it looks very similar to the data, so it’s a long, flat cable with a little notch.

And just like before, all we need to do is line that up with the back of the SSD, plug it in, and our SSD is 100% ready to go. While we’re back here, we need to plug in the front fan. We actually have two options of doing that. Typically we’re going to want to use the little three pin header to plug it straight into the motherboard, however this board actually doesn’t have another slot, so we can actually just use the Molex.

This is another cable that you’re gonna get off the power supply. While it looks a little crooked and weird, all we need to do here is just plug it into place, ’til it clicks, and our fan is gonna be good to go. Now, the system’s basically done. This is always the most exciting part. Does the computer work?

So, once you get a mouse, keyboard, monitor, and plug everything in, hopefully everything works. So, yes! It’s the best feeling ever when it actually boots on the first try. The next thing we have to do is give it about 30 seconds or so, and we should get video up on the monitor.

Or less than 30 seconds, that actually is really quick. If you’ve gotten to this point, congratulations, you have a fully working computer. Now is the point you turn the PC off, unplug it and start doing some cable management.

This, maybe not the cleanest thing in the world. But once you get all that ready, you’re good to install Windows and have a fully working gaming computer. If you want more information on the actual parts I used for the system, you can check out the Photon 3.0 build guide, and if you enjoyed this video, definitely be sure to subscribe to the channel to see more Gaming PC and lots of other cool tech videos like this. Anyway guys, thank you so much for watching and I will catch you in the next one.

My Blog