Things To Remember When Building Your PC

I recently upgraded my custom build 2.5 year old beast. When I started out that time, I wanted to make something really powerful, enviable and which kind of had everything. After burning $3500 in this endeavor I enjoyed owning something that exceeded what Microsoft and others just recently “innovated” as Media Center PC. But this time upgrade wasn’t easy and I kept messing up things many times and calling up other gurus. So here’s the list for the benefit of someone not-so-skilled: 1. Usually motherboards have 3 special screws that would touch the chassis and provide the grounding. Don’t mix up (aha, screw up) those screws. 2. When you lay PC on its side (motherboard top facing you), remember all IDE cable’s red-line side faces you but floppy’s faces down. If you mess this up, drives won’t be detected and you might keep thinking that you blew up power supply and run to buy another one. 3. Power cables to all IDE drives would have yellow side facing you and red side facing IDE cable’s red-line. Usually you can’t plug other way, unless, uhhh… you push really hard! 4. It’s important to see which drive is master and which one is slave (ALWAYS look at the jumper settings before you put drives in bays wire everything up). I didn’t bothered and just keep trying until they all were detected (real reason being I’d lost my flashlight). This won’t blow up your drives but it’s very unreliable. 5. Don’t forget to connect CD digital and DVD SPDF connectors to sound card. Former allows digital ripping of audio CDs in MP3s and later allows Dolby Digital sound if you have the card that supports that and have hooked up to Home Theater system. Also if you want to listen modem noises on speakers (or home theater as in my case), don’t forget to connect modem and sound card. Many cheap modems don’t support this any longer however. 6. If power light blinks then probably you have power supply set on 230V (European style) rather then 115V (US style).

Principal Research Engineer

A program trying to understand what it’s computing.