There are so many people who simply buy a computer without ever thinking about what they need it for. Instead of taking the time to understand exactly what they are buying, they just throw their money out on the table to take their new machine home.
The exact same problem happens when people go to build computers. They pack as much power into a build as they can, and they end up making a computer they don’t need and can’t sell. On the other hand, many budget builders don’t pick parts that are strong enough to be viable for anything more than GrandMa’s youtube browser, if it doesn’t freeze mid video.
So, to help you really understand what kind of computer is needed for what, we have put together a list of popular computer uses, and whether you should build it the computer or buy it.
1 – Bitcoin Mining
BitCoin mining is still a very popular activity when it comes to making money with a computer. By utilizing the hardware of a computer, you can turn your machine into money maker though mining. Mining involves your computer completing math equations to certify and complete transactions online. So, with that being said, you need either a monster computer, or a purpose built mining machine.
In the early days of BitCoin mining, building your own machine was really they way to go. Since most people relied on their CPU to mine in those days, making a monster miner was really a built it for yourself situation. This trend continued as miners moved from the limited potential of the CPU to the slightly less limited power of the GPU. As the GPU took over the mining world, the build it yourself mentality behind mining continued to grow.
Today, the best bitcoin miner is a prebuilt and purpose made device. These application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) devices are the best way to get into mining today because of the price to efficiency ratio. They mine faster, take less power, and tend to cost less than trying to build a mining rig yourself. If you are looking into joining the bitcoin mining revolution, you want to go pre-built.
2 – Video Editing
Video editing is one of those tasks that really comes down to the equipment you are using and the software that is driving that. If you really want to get into video edit and enjoy the experience, you want to find a machine that has a lot of power, especially in the multitasking category of processor power.
If you have the money, one of the new Mac Minis or iMac Pros will be a great choice for your video editing experience. These machines are both monsters when it comes to rendering your post production content, especially the new iMac Pro with the Vega 64 GPU. If go for the Mac Mini, try to get an external graphics card to boost render times.
For many people, Mac is just too expensive, and they don’t see the benefits over a PC with similar stats. For those of you that don’t want to shell out for the Mac, you can build a monster video editing machine for a fraction of the price. Should you choose to build your own editing machine, skip right past intel and check out the new Ryzen Chips from AMD. These CPUs are pack full of threads that link the cores in the CPU, and the multi-core benchmarks for these CPUs are insane. They are amazing at rendering video, especially if you pair it with a high end AMD or Nvidia graphics card.
3 – Streaming
Streaming really comes down to the quality of your graphics card, and the amount of cores it has to stream with. CUDA cores or Stream Processors in your card help the GPU multitask beyond its direct function to display your graphics. If your card has to connect to the internet and display your game through a streaming software, you want to have a high count on those CUDA or stream cores. The more cores you have, the easier it will be for your computer to display and stream, as long as your CPU doesn’t cause a bottleneck.
So, should you build it or buy it? Since this really comes down to having a great graphics card, where you start is ultimately up to you. You could buy a prebuilt computer that has a great CPU with a terrible graphics card and swap out the card with your own, or you could go all out and custom build. Since you are already planning to pull parts from the other prebuilt computer to upgrade for what you need, it’s better to simply build it yourself. You tend to save a lot of money by building it yourself, and you can spend time hunting the best deals on the parts you want.
Build It Or Buy It? That Is The Question.
When it really comes down to building vs buying your computer, you have to think of a few factors. The first major factor is if you really need to build the computer yourself, or if you have the ability to do so. If you need a custom setup for your computer, but you don’t know how to build it, you can find sites online that can help. Places like CyberPowerPC and iBuyPower have custom configuration setups for customers. They give you a starting point for your computer, and you upgrade/downgrade by clicking options they give you. After you get the computer the way you want it, they build it for your. That means you can get that customer computer we were talking about without having to know how to build it. They will install the OS for your, make sure your fans make a solid air flow, and test the functionality of your new computer. It’s like buying a pre-built computer, but you get a say on every single part that goes in it. Whether you should seriously build it or buy it comes down to what you are trying to do. Weigh your options, do your research, and see if purpose built is right for you. If you can’t find something that is purpose built, reach out to a tech friend to help you figure out what you need to make your computer everything you need it to be.