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Thread: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

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    Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    I'm going to build mine but I'm just wondering for friends who are new to the whole thing and want to get pcs over the next few months to a year or so, is the prebuilt option worth it?

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    Re: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    I've seen some fantastic value pre-builts online recently. Make sure you can see all the components, though, and check them out as well as tot up the price using pcpartpicker or similar to see how much of a markup you're paying. Sometimes they just show you the cpu and gpu and cheap out on important stuff like motherboard and psu and that is very much a false economy. So go with a reputable brand i.e. check out the reviews for the company online before you buy.

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    Re: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    "It depends"

    You need to compare budget and requirements. I've seen a prebuilt with a 3400G for £275, not convinced you could build it for much less but you get a better choice of parts doing it yourself.

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    Re: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    One other thing to consider as of January 2021 is stock.

    If the prebuilt is within a reasonable price bracket, with a graphics card you want, and it's in stock - it might actually be the only way to get that graphics card at the moment!

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    Re: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    Quote Originally Posted by DDY View Post
    One other thing to consider as of January 2021 is stock.

    If the prebuilt is within a reasonable price bracket, with a graphics card you want, and it's in stock - it might actually be the only way to get that graphics card at the moment!
    This is very much a thing at the moment and would be the #1 reason i'd recommend pre-builts to friends right now, but hopefully it isn't a thing for long

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    Re: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    I would also recommend Pre-built in this current climate of part shortages. I decided back in November I was going to build my own PC for the first time since its usually cheaper. So I picked up a few parts. Now im sitting in January facing higher prices for cases/coolers and not able to get the graphics card I want : / should of just got a pre-built from scan or something back in November.

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    Re: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    The biggest drawback I find is the upgrade path and performance too.

    For example if you have seen the Dawid Does Tech videos on his pre-built dell, the 3060 doesn't perform the same as a dual fan powered 3060 and the cooling is that bad he had to underclock the system.

    I recently had to do a walkthrough on why a Hp case (HP Pavilion Gaming Desktop) won't fit a different motherboard, and even if somehow he did that (sticky tape?) I had to explain that the 400W PSU would not do much for overclocking, and a stock cooler would do nothing for temps. HP won't even show the diagram of this motherboard (Baker)!!!

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    Re: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    Quote Originally Posted by D3vastation View Post
    The biggest drawback I find is the upgrade path and performance too.

    For example if you have seen the Dawid Does Tech videos on his pre-built dell, the 3060 doesn't perform the same as a dual fan powered 3060 and the cooling is that bad he had to underclock the system.

    I recently had to do a walkthrough on why a Hp case (HP Pavilion Gaming Desktop) won't fit a different motherboard, and even if somehow he did that (sticky tape?) I had to explain that the 400W PSU would not do much for overclocking, and a stock cooler would do nothing for temps. HP won't even show the diagram of this motherboard (Baker)!!!
    If you are to buy a pre-built, it absolutely should not be a brand like Dell, for these exact reasons, but that doesn't mean that all pre-builts have this issue.

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    Re: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    Quote Originally Posted by wazzickle View Post
    If you are to buy a pre-built, it absolutely should not be a brand like Dell, for these exact reasons, but that doesn't mean that all pre-builts have this issue.
    By pre-built I always assume it is a branded pre-built i.e. HP/Dell, otherwise any other pre-built is simply a custom PC put together?

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    Re: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    Quote Originally Posted by D3vastation View Post
    By pre-built I always assume it is a branded pre-built i.e. HP/Dell, otherwise any other pre-built is simply a custom PC put together?
    Pre-built doesn't necessarily mean branded, it literally just means that you buy a pc whole rather than build it yourself. It implies a level of off-the-shelf rather than customisability and potentially the sorts of things Dell do like cut corners and not pay any attention whatsoever to bottlenecking but it doesn't have to and there's lots of pre-build companies out there that will let you customise and use quality thermal paste and practice good cable management etc. They regularly review some Scan 3XS pre-builts here and they always score decently.

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    Re: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    I got my current desktop custom built by Scan 3XS. Reason I did it was because I had small kids at home, so no space to build it myself. Plus didn't want accidental parts damage.

    I was happy with what I got, as I could select the exact parts I wanted. And it's still working fine 3.5 years later. Although I turned off the CPU Overclock, as I didn't see a point in it. And a crash reset the overclock. No problems since that.

    Also, I realise I'm replying to an OP post from January!
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    Re: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    Quote Originally Posted by Scryder View Post
    ....

    Also, I realise I'm replying to an OP post from January!
    Well yeah, but that means it's a slightly different moment. I think both question and answer are still relevant.

    My view is that "worth it" is subjective, and to the individual buyer, also relative.

    Right now, buying a whole system from a good quality integrator is probably about the only way to get certain components, so on that basis alone, it may be worth it. It'll probably come at a price, but also, probably not at scalper prices.

    If times, and supply chains, were "normal" I'd say it's a different calculation, but still subjective. Buying from a specialist builder and cherry-picking your components will, again, come at a premium but, and for me it's an important "but" .... gives considerable extra convenience. So it's really a case of whether that convenience justifies the premium. To me, these days, it does. Ten years ago, it would not have for me.

    I've built enough PCs, for myself and others, for the process to now be a chore, rather than fun. It also means less hassle if I plug in bits and something doesn't work.

    So the advantages to me include not spending the time building, not spending the time trouble-shooting and, currently, probably selecting GPU and maybe CPU options not available if I self-build. And, reduced risk.

    The downside is a price premium. But, frankly, my finances aren't what they were in some times past either, and if it adds a couple of hundred quid to the price, and maybe means buying some bits I don't need (like OS) .... so what?

    Is it worth it? To me, yes. To anybody else, I have no idea.
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    Re: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    Quote Originally Posted by Scryder View Post

    Also, I realise I'm replying to an OP post from January!
    It's only a few months ago so still relevant, if it had been a few years ago would be a different story.
    Jon

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    Re: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    Posted 15th May
    CCL Ryzen GT Gaming PC - Ryzen 3300x + RTX3070 + 16GB 3000 + 650W + B450 Tomahawk £1,133.99 at CCLOnline

    Posted 17th Jan
    Punch Technology Gaming PC - GeForce RTX 3070, Ryzen 5 5600X, 1TB HDD + 500GB SSD, 16GB RAM, 3 Year Warranty £1299 @ Laptops Direct

    Good ones occasionally come up on hotukdeals. Some of these are good enough value given how much you can spend just on a GPU that you can buy them, strip out the components you don't need, or even just substitute your existing GPU in, sell it, and you've got a fantastic bargain, assuming you can sell it.

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    Re: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonj1611 View Post
    It's only a few months ago so still relevant, if it had been a few years ago would be a different story.
    Yeah, what I meant was OP probably got their answer to the question already.

    But you know what... I didn't read "...over the next few months to a year or so". My bad!

    Well, my opinion is still in my first answer.
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    Re: Are prebuilts worth it at the moment?

    I did a nearly pre built a year or so ago. Had it supplied without an OS so I could chuck a cheap Win10 Pro on it. Price wise was slightly cheaper than I could do myself, but the cabling was excellent, much better than I could manage. Came from PCSpecialists.

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