Disclaimer: The following is what I do when I build a PC. I am not responsible if it all goes wrong and something gets broken or doesn’t work. Step 1: Choose your hardware In simple terms to build your basic PC you are going to need the following parts. 1. Motherboard 2. Processor (CPU) 3. Memory (Ram) 4. Hard drive(s) 5. Graphics card(s) 6. Power supply (PSU) 7. CPU cooler 8. Case fans 9. Case 10. CD/DVDRW drive(s) 11. Optional: Sound card (motherboards also have onboard sound) The PC built in this guide will have the following hardware. 1. Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3R Intel P45 (Socket 775) 2. Processor (CPU): Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 (LGA 775) 3. Memory (Ram): Corsair Dominator 4GB (2x2GB) DDR2 (PC2-8500) 4. Hard drive: Samsung SpinPoint F1 320GB SATA-II 16MB Cache 5. Graphics card: Nvidia 8800GT 512MB PCI-E 6. Power supply (PSU): Corsair 520w modular PSU 7. CPU cooler: Thermalright Ultra-120A Extreme (LGA775) 8. Case fans: 2x 120mm 9. Case: Antec 300 Three Hundred Ultimate Gaming 10. CD/DVDRW drive: Sony 22x DVD±RW SATA 11. Sound card: Creative X-FI Xtreme music PCI Note: The sound card is an optional extra as there is onboard sound on the motherboard. Note: The number and size of case fans you require will depend on your case and if your CPU cooler requires extra fans. Note: You do not need to buy extra thermal paste; most if not all CPU coolers come with thermal paste pre-applied. Although it is handy to have extra thermal paste as if you ever take the cooler off, new paste will be needed. After market thermal paste may also give better temps. Note: You will not need to buy extra cables such as SATA and IDE cables. These come with the motherboard. Basic motherboard layout Tips: 1. Never touch the copper contact pads or pins. 2. Always handle the electrical components by the edges of the chip or board. 3. If its going to fit it will slot in easily, don't force components or cables into place. 4. Before you touch any electrical components make sure you are well grounded, this will help reduce the risk of static electrical damage to components. Once the PSU is fitted into the case I usually plug the PSU into the wall socket, although not switched on. This allows you to ground yourself on the case when you touch a metal part of the case.