Graphics card prices may have fallen after the halt of the crypto mining hype train, but it is still expensive to build a gaming PC in South Africa.
New hardware is not cheap, and the price of a mid-range gaming machine is generally above that of a console like the PlayStation 4 Pro or Xbox One X.
One way to save some money and still build a decent gaming PC, however, is to use second-hand parts to replace your old components.
To see how much a build costs, we outlined an average gaming PC built exclusively with second-hand components.
Using information from Gumtree and Carbonite, we sourced average pricing for decent components listed for sale.
When choosing components, we selected parts which mirrored the performance of the average gaming PC on Steam for April 2018.
This gives us a good idea of how much you can save when building a second-hand PC compared to a new one.
The list of components and their pricing, sourced from local classifieds websites, is below.
|Intel Core i3-6100||R950|
|LGA 1151 Motherboard||R950|
|8GB DDR4 RAM||R800|
|Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 3GB||R3,100|
|1TB Hard Drive||R500|
|450W Power Supply||R400|
Our research showed that the price of the average gaming PC on Steam should be roughly around R7,050 if you buy used components.
This is much cheaper than the R9,333 an equivalent new build costs.
However, it is really not worth buying all the components second-hand.
Parts like the chassis and motherboard cost roughly the same new or used, and in this case users should buy new components.
Alway check the new component price before buying a second-hand part, as you may not enjoy big savings across the board.
The price of building a second-hand desktop is substantially cheaper than buying new components, but it can be riskier.
Many PC components currently for sale on classifieds websites were previously used to power cryptocurrency mining rigs.
Now that mining is not as profitable, many miners are trying to offload multiple graphics cards, power supplies, and high-capacity motherboards.
Buyers should be extremely careful when considering these offers, as cryptocurrency mining can dramatically shorten the lifespan of a graphics card.
Other components such as motherboards and power supplies can also be adversely affected by the constant high-power operations of a crypto mining rig.
When buying second-hand components, always make sure you know what you are purchasing and physically test the component before completing the purchase.
Whether you are buying a motherboard, graphics card, or CPU, you should inspect it for physical damage, place it in a test system to check if it boots up, and run a few stress tests on it just to be sure.
Additionally, graphics cards which have been used for mining cryptocurrency may not be covered under most warranties, and you should factor this into your purchase offer.