Building a gaming desktop: 30K to a few lakhs

Building a gaming desktop: 30K to a few lakhs

Picture credit: Manujl

Enter any passionate computer gamer’s den and it is a different world. There will be something in every part of the room that suggests it is not a place inhabited by any ordinary computer user.

For the gamer or someone who likes the extremes of computing, the computer room is the Holy Grail that is passionately tended. LED strip lighting in various colours adorns the room and the table on which the computer hardware is set up. If the room is dimly lit, the hidden LED lighting stands out even more to give it a cool look. An audio system with thundering bass and crisp treble adds to the experience. Often, there are figurines of popular sci-fi movie characters around the room. Welcome to the gamer’s den.

But these are just the optics. More importantly, hard core gamers will want their computers to have the best processing power and game-handling abilities.

There is a huge selection of computer parts available in India and people are spoilt for choice. In fact, there is so much out there that it is not uncommon to get fed up while zeroing in on the configuration.

How good the computer’s performance is depends on the budget. Obviously, throwing in more cash for the project is always better. Choosing the latest products will ensure some kind of future protection since technology is advancing at break-neck speeds.

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Gaming computers need a lot or processing power, a huge amount of RAM and solid graphics processing, an ultrasharp monitor or even a dual monitor setup for an immersive experience. These are just a few examples of the things people do.

While hunting for computer parts, the first one that usually comes to mind is the processor. It is the heart and brain of the machine and something that can make or break a good gaming system.

The obvious choice of a processor is from Intel or AMD. There are good processors from both companies. For a long time, it was thought that AMD was behind Intel. However, AMD has caught up and has good products in its lineup. The processor that is chosen depends on the budget and being the heart of the system, it makes sense to get the best one possible.

A budget system can begin with an Intel i3 or AMD Ryzen 3 processor. These are the basic processors from the two manufacturers and can be bought from about Rs 4,500 to Rs 5,500. However, it is advisable to invest more money and buy the Intel i5 or AMD Ryzen 5 processor. They will cost between Rs 12,000 and Rs 30,000, depending on whether it is the current generation chip or slightly older. The Intel i7 and Ryzen 7 are the next level and processors are priced between Rs 21,000 and 60,000 (or slightly more). AMD’s flagship is the Ryzen Threadripper that costs nothing less than Rs 70,000, while Intel’s flagship i9 processor is priced higher.

While buying a processor, it is important to choose a good and compatible motherboard. From about Rs 3,000, the price can go up to Rs 70,000. Whatever the budget is, one needs to ensure that it has the latest USB 3.1, Type-C, HDMI ports and a good number of them. A DisplayPort is great to have since it can transfer high quality video and is good for gaming. The most popular motherboards are from Intel, Gigabyte, Asus, MSI, ASRock, Biostar, Corsair et al.

Motherboards generally have inbuilt video and audio cards. However, high performance cards can be added. A low-end card will cost about Rs 3,000 and can go up to Rs 80,000 after discounts on e-commerce sites. Good quality external graphics cards are also a good option.

The next important component is the RAM module. A minimum of 8GB is needed but 16GB or higher is recommended. No amount of RAM is too much for gaming or tasks that need a lot of buffer space. A basic 8GB RAM module starts at Rs 5,000 and could go upto Rs 15,000 for a 16GB stick. Popular brands are Corsair, HyperX, G.Skill, Kingston and Samsung.

While choosing the computer case to put this all in, it is important to buy a good one. The cost of cases starts at Rs 3,000 but it is important to buy a good one. Well designed cases will have better heat flow management. High performance computers will obviously generate a lot of heat and keeping the case temperature under control is vital. Good cases could go upto Rs 30,000 and may or may not have a power supply unit built in.

The trend that is getting increasingly popular is cases with one side transparent. Many of today’s motherboards and cooling fans have LED strips on them. They look really fancy and can add to the visual appeal and ambience of the gaming room.

A 1 TeraByte hard disk drive is standard these days, but a solid state drive will be faster. From about Rs 3,500 to Rs 18,000 is the approximate range from brands like Kingston, Western Digital, Seagate, Samsung etc.

A DVD or BluRay drive is optional since high-capacity pen drives are available.

Having bought expensive parts, the whole gaming experience will be nothing without a good monitor. A high quality monitor is a must and dual monitor setups are common in a gaming rig.

There is huge choice of keyboards and mice. In fact, there are a lot of gaming-specific keyboards and mice. There are additional assignable buttons on gaming mice that which have additional assignable buttons. Prices and features vary a lot and it is advisable to pick the best that one can afford.

In conclusion, a budget gaming desktop can be built for about Rs 30,000, excluding the cost of the monitor and the upper limit figure can be really big.

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