How to Build a PC in Japan
There was a time when building a PC was common practice for tech nerds, as it was the only way to get the machine you needed. These days, PCs are relatively cheap and unless you need a specialist rig for gaming or crypto mining, it is a lot easier to go into Bic Camera or a smaller local retailer and buy a PC off the shelf. It will come with standard components, but you can look for a machine with a specification that fits your price point. However, there are still good reasons to build a custom rig.
Inside a typical PC
Why Build a PC from Scratch?
Firstly, building a PC allows you to create a machine with the exact specification you need. You then have total control over what your PC can do. It's also much easier to replace components once you know your PC inside out.
For example, a mining PC needs a stable motherboard that supports multiple graphics cards. Gaming motherboards from the likes of Asus and MSI will do, but they need to be top of the range. A good example of a suitable motherboard is the Asus B250 Mining Expert. This will support 19 GPUs. An ASRocks H110 Pro BTC+ is a decent starter motherboard. High-quality graphics cards are also essential. Look for high-end cards from Nvidia or AMD. The GTX 1070 or AMD Vega 56 are a good starting point.
Think about you want your PC to do before you start building it. There is no point in splashing out good money on a top-of-the-range graphics card and multi-GPU setup if all you want to do is check your Facebook.
Searching for Cheap Components
You have two choices. Look online at stores such as RS or visit a local tech retailer. Bic Camera sells PC parts, but if you need more specialist stuff, visit a PC specialty store such as Dospara. You may also be able to source second-hand graphics cards and other parts on tech forums or online auction sites such as eBay.
Choose Your Core Parts
Decide what core parts you need for your preferred rig. These will include a motherboard, processor, graphics card, power supply, RAM, storage, and case. Research your options and ask for advice on tech forums if you are not sure about the merits of one component versus another.
Follow online tutorials if you have never assembled a PC before. YouTube has tons of useful content related to PC assembly. Remember to discharge any static electricity before touching any delicate components. Lastly, make sure you pick a case that's large enough.
Bear in mind that building a PC from scratch can be costly, especially if you want a custom gaming rig. The popularity of cryptocurrency mining has pushed the price of components such as graphics cards sky-high, which makes a custom build PC more expensive than it used to be. The good news is that there are ways to save money. The new Ryzen chips from AMD combine a processor with graphics on a single chip. Crypto miners can't use them, but gamers can.
Building a PC isn't easy, but it's a great learning experience. Let us know how you get on!