How to Select a Gaming Computer Case
Size DOES Matter
The most important thing to know about desktop PC cases is that they come in all different shapes and sizes. When shopping for a computer case, you must be sure that it is large enough for all of your hardware to fit inside, and you must be conscious of the fact that you may want to upgrade in the future, with more or larger hardware. For this reason, it’s generally advisable to select which components you plan to use before you purchase a case. This will give you an accurate idea of how big your case needs to be.
Another important factor in your decision should be the quantity and size of bays. Desktop PC cases are made with different sizes and numbers of bays, which can be a huge headache if you don’t know exactly what you need. If you still use floppy drives, you’ll need to be sure that the PC case has a 3.5″ bay. Hard drives also use 3.5″ bays, so if you plan to have multiple hard drives and a floppy drive, you’ll need at least 3 3.5″ bays. CD and DVD drives require 5″ bays.
Make Sure the Case is Compatible with Your Motherboard
Motherboards also come in different shapes and sizes, so you must be certain that your motherboard fits within your desired desktop PC case. Luckily, all motherboards and cases are identified with a “form factor” which is manufacturer’s sizing standard. ATX is the most common form factor. If your motherboard is an ATX, this will offer the greatest flexibility in selecting a PC case. Just be sure you also choose an ATX PC case.
All Power Supplies Are Not Created Equal
All computers need power, and generally more power will provide more performance for your PC. For gaming PCs, it’s recommended to use a power supply that can produce at least 500 watts. However, many gaming PCs have extra hardware that should be taken into consideration which may require even more power from the power supply.
While some gaming computer cases come with their own power supply, it’s a good idea to shop around for others. All power supplies are not created equal! Whatever comes stock with a gaming PC case is usually whatever was cheapest for the manufacturer to buy or produce. If you are going to be a serious gamer with a serious gaming PC, strongly consider purchasing a separate power supply.
The Cooler the Better
Cooling is one of the most important parts of your gaming PC. Hardware-intensive games cause PC components to heat up rapidly, and without a sufficient cooling system, performance can be slowed down significantly. If the components get too hot, they can even be damaged or destroyed. Look for a gaming computer case that comes with at least 2 fans. Some higher-end gaming computer cases come with liquid cooling systems and large heat sinks. Consider looking for cases with these additions as they will significantly cool your components, keep your PC operating at peak performance, and keep your gaming uninterrupted.
While many people are quite content with a plain-vanilla-looking desktop PC case, others want to show off their fancy case’s appearance to their friends and family. Cases can be customized with fancy glowing lights, colors, see-through casing, and much more. If it helps you get in the mood to frag noobs by blingin’ out your case, go ahead and do so! You’ll pay a little more, but to some people it’s totally worth it. For others on a budget, it might be more worth it to spend the extra money on hardware upgrades instead of case bling, such as a better CPU, graphics card, or more RAM.
I hope this guide has helped you in deciding what gaming PC case you should buy! Good luck hunting, and happy fragging!
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