Biulding a New PC : How To?

luxe

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EDIT: Crap - typo on title - mods please fix the spelling?

Hi Tech Guru's,

I am unboxing my first pc and building from scratch for the first time, all my other pc's have been custom built for me, and decided it's about time i learnt how to do it properly.

What i am looking for is some of the pro tips in assembling a PC, not the "Take it out of the box, put the motherboard into the case" etc, but more the intricate sneaky bits where it can all go horribly wrong, or perfectly right.

Anyone got any tricks on:

1. Floating a mobo in a new case.
2. Applying Thermal Paste (here, there and everywhere)
3. Cooling. How many is enough? - Assume a CM case with space for 10 fans normally.
4. Order of installation after the mobo is in..Chip first, cooler, ram, psu, hdd, dvd, video then cabling?
5. Tips on installing a CPU Cooler - i have heard this can be tricky?
6. Anything a first timer might not know ?

Thanks lads, will post a few pics of my install. I have everything bar the cpu from prophecy, so the build might start tomorrow or Monday.

Appreciate the help as always.

Pull in Peanut and Archer!
 

Decotey

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Hi

Before touching the mobo or any chips I normally touch the metal case to discharge any static (some people will swear you will need an anti static wrist band, but I think that's overboard).
I normally place the CPU, then RAM, then hard drivers (these can be a bit tricky to install into the case if you already have a big cooler installed or graphics card already in.)
The CPU cooler should come with it's own thermal paste, greyish matter on it. When you lock the cooler into place it compresses the paste onto the cpu to make good contact.
Sometimes randomly adding fans to a case can mess with airflow. (some fans are intake and some expel air.)

Just keep the motherboard's manual with layout open, the trickiest parts are those small pins for external usb and audio cause they so tiny and the writing isn't very big
 

Albereth

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The mobo manual usually tells you the order in which to do things but be prepared to guess on a number of things. Thermal paste isn't usually a problem the first time around - in fact you probably will have a retail set (chip and cooling fan). It's when you add other cooling fans that things get strange and you may need to apply paste - or in an upgrade. Make sure the paste is mixed properly.

Things are a lot easier these days.
 

Archer

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Take of both side panels of the case.
Put the rear IO shield in.
Put the PSU in.
Make sure you have all the stand offs screwed in on the motherboard tray.
Now place motherboard on the bag it came in and place the CPU in it. Apply a tiny amount of thermal paste to the middle of the CPU (like half the size of a small pea).
Mount motherboard (lie the case on its side, it'll be easier)
Now ready the CPU cooler, put the case back up, and mount the cooler. You may want someone to help with this step. When tightening the screws do it in a 1,3,2,4 pattern (ie not clockwise).
Slot the RAM in.
Wire up all the case stuff (power on/off etc)
Put the HDDs in.
Now do all the wires from the PSU to everything (excl GPU obviously)
Next wire the HDDs
Finally put the GPU in (I like leaving it to last since they are usually so big).
Power wires to GPU
Power wires to fans
Pray to electronic gods, and switch on
Haha, it didnt turn on :p you must plug it into the wall first ;)
Install Windows, porn, etc

/wonders what I left out... :confused:
 
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general_koffi

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Yeah, plugging in the ON/OFF switch, reset switch, external case audio and USB is the biggest pain, because the plugs are so teeny tiny. Fortunately most motherboards come with a little adapter thing which makes that a lot easier.
 

ponder

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4. Order of installation after the mobo is in..Chip first, cooler, ram, psu, hdd, dvd, video then cabling?
5. Tips on installing a CPU Cooler - i have heard this can be tricky?

Depending on the MB & CPU/Cooler you might have to install the cpu & cooler before you even put the MB in the case as there might not be enough space to get your fingers/hands around things. If that is the case then you might was well install the ram at the same time outside of the case. My setup is like this. Install the rest of the stuff (except cables) before or after the MB is in.
 

Archer

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Depending on the MB & CPU/Cooler you might have to install the cpu & cooler before you even put the MB in the case as there might not be enough space to get your fingers/hands around things. If that is the case then you might was well install the ram at the same time outside of the case. My setup is like this. Install the rest of the stuff (except cables) before or after the MB is in.

The OP is getting a Scout iirc (which has a cutout behind the CPU backplate) so he should be able to mount his cooler (Cogage) with the motherboard already in the case.
 

luxe

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Its a Rampage Gene II mobo, i7 950 chip and Cogage True Spirit Cooler, CM Storm Scout case.

+1 Intelligence Point to you Archer (see above lol)

edit: getting a 950 instead.
 
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nakedpeanut

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Take your socks off before you build.. :D especially on a tile floor, don't wanna slip an injure yourself :p
Don't try reset the cmos and accidentally jump the fan 3-pin connector.. That usually ends in sparks and flying chipset pieces..

If you only see the bios saying 3GB of ram and you installed 6, just re-install and give it a little wiggle. There are tiny pins that get pushed out sideways when you install ram. So if they not, the ram is not fully in the socket.
hmmm Use all the screws for your mobo! don't be skimpy or lazy!
Try do some good cable management to improve airflow.
Have fun and take some pics :D
 

luxe

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:) Take my socks off...are you mad? I might catch something!

All the parts have arrived, the build starts tonight :) Will take some pics, and undoubtedly keep the other pc on for tips on installing as i go on the new box :)

Watched some vids on separating the HDD's (1 on the top and 1 on the bottom) it increases the airflow through the middle, which is quite handy.

Interesting how some people install everything outside of the chassis, and some pop the mobo in and do it all inside the case.
 

nakedpeanut

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Well I usually install my cpu and cooler onto the mobo outside. My mid tower is a little cramped, but what ever works for you..

And ya I also have my HDD's separated
I suppose some more advise is, if the colours don't match or you need force it to clip things in, you doing it wrong :)
 

ponder

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The OP is getting a Scout iirc (which has a cutout behind the CPU backplate) so he should be able to mount his cooler (Cogage) with the motherboard already in the case.

Good luck to him then.
 

DUDE!@##$%%

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BEST THING TO DO:

go onto youtube and find a good user, some people have videos explaining and showing you how to do everything in great detail...
 

luxe

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Update:

It works lol :)

Will pop some pictures up now now.

Some of the issues I ran into last night:

1. I got the CM V8 Cooler instead of the Cogage, didnt want to wait for Wootware. That thing is ENORMOUS and causes endless problems. I popped it onto the motherboard first (after the chip lol), and then SERIOUSLY battled to get the ATX power, LCD Poster another clip into the top right of the board. There was basically no space left between the case and the cooler. No way I could have preempted that really. It was basically in the way the whole time after i put it on.
2. The Cooler Master manuals are crap. " 1. Install Motherboard. 2. Install Accessory Cards" - not exactly helpful.
3.Thermal paste was trickier than i thought, used a business card, not really as easy as it looks first time round.
4.The on-board reset and start button on the Rampage is awesome.
5. I was an idiot, plugged everything in, prayed to electric gods, and it turned on but nothing on the screen. After 15 minutes of messing around with every cable, i realised i hadnt given the mobo power through the atx plug. <slap>
6. Cooler Master clips on the cards instead of screws are epic. the hard drive slider jobbies are brilliant.
7. The fans in the case are sweet, but i noticed that one isnt working. I have obviously missed a power trick somewhere.
8. I have not done any cable management yet, wanted to make sure it works first, but i still need to plug the two fans on the removable side plate onto the mobo...hope there are power slots for them.
9. Installed my old hdd's - windows wouldnt start. Corrupt Registry apparently, no biggie so i reinstalled win 7 64 ultimate.
10. Apparently ram doesnt go in the first two slots :) I am only using 2 x 2gb chips atm, and they go in the second and fourth slot. Learnt that the hard way.
11. I am a noob. I bought extra fans, and they are blue, the scout comes with red fans. <slap>
12. The stupid IO shield was a ball-ache - couldnt get it to clip in, in fact, its still sorta floating in the back - have to redo everything to get it in properly i think. Pain in the ass.
13. Does it make a difference which SATA input the HDD's are in? Currently they are in SATA 3 and SATA6, with the DVD in SATA 1. Weird.
14. Gto a Huntkey 900w rated PSU - that thing is amazing, all the cables are sleeved, and you can choose which rails you want to use, as they are removable. Nice.

Once i get everything working properly,i will use the little cable ties to clean up the mess - gonna get some photos so you can see the size of the CM V8 on a Rampage Gene in a Scout case. BIG
 

Archer

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3. Sounds like you spread the paste? You're meant to let it spread by itself via pressire between the cooler+CPU. Next time...
5. Lol, I forgot to put RAM in, so also had a heart attack last time
11. Tsk tsk, should get a woman to check the colour scheme next time ;)
12. IO shield must go in before mobo, you have little hope of getting it in now in my experience
13. No
14. Modular ftw
 

luxe

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500

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confusion
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meh - so much for embedding the pics...i fail at
 

luxe

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Yeah - i am gonna take the whole thing apart tonight again to put the IO Shield in - epic fail. This will also give me another chance to get the cable in the right places, as from the pics you can see shizzle is hanging around in most places.

All the vids i watched had people actually spreading the paste with a card..oh well, it worked eventually :)

Btw - are there adaptors for the little 3 pin clips that the fans have so that i can pop it onto like a "double adapter" that could co into a molex, or a hdd power cable (the one with the 4 silver pins inside)? This would make my life easier when i connect the last two fans on the side panel.
 

Archer

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Yeah - i am gonna take the whole thing apart tonight again to put the IO Shield in - epic fail. This will also give me another chance to get the cable in the right places, as from the pics you can see shizzle is hanging around in most places.

All the vids i watched had people actually spreading the paste with a card..oh well, it worked eventually :)

Btw - are there adaptors for the little 3 pin clips that the fans have so that i can pop it onto like a "double adapter" that could co into a molex, or a hdd power cable (the one with the 4 silver pins inside)? This would make my life easier when i connect the last two fans on the side panel.

Why not connect those fans directly to your mobo and control them like that? As for the thermal paste I find that spreading it with a CC ends up leaving way too much on the CPU. Ideally you want metal to metal contact, whereas that spreading method means you end up with metal->paste->metal.
 

luxe

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I spread it pretty thing, probably half a mm. It dried and you could sorta see the the chip, so i think i did a decent job. i could connect the fans directly to the mobo, but then i have two stupid fan cables hanging in the case, as the pin connectors for the fans are in different places....or am i being retarded again.
 
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