A few tips when buying PC hardware during a pandemic

For those of you who are looking to build your first PC, you may find it very difficult to find parts and peripherals at a reasonable price. Most components are either overpriced or not in stock. Luckily, there are some ways to run around from all the chaos that the “Backstreet Boys: Reunion Tour” had to our lives and that includes PC building. *Make sure to follow safety precautions when it comes to receiving packages.*

The waiting game

The most apparent way of getting around the high prices of PC parts is by purchasing your parts at a later date. This might be a boring solution but it can up paying in dividends. Patience is an important part of PC building and that is just as true when it comes to hardware. Most PC hardware retailers like Amazon and Newegg do not have anything in stock but you can always check the next day to see. Who knows, you might be lucky enough to get it for retail price.

Waiting can also be beneficial to your budget because it gives you more time to save money for better parts. For new builders, looking through the PC requirements for your games is a good way to pass the time. You can see which games your PC can and can’t play.

Used goods, used goods

An eBay listing for a Zotac GTX 1070 Graphics Card.

First, a warning: There is a risk when it comes to buying used hardware over the internet because old hardware does not have any safety nets. Used product means no warranty or returns when something goes wrong. Used graphics cards can have diminished lifespan if the card was used as a mining card. That being said, they are also cheaper and they are everywhere. For example, the Zotac GTX 1070 above can be had for $220 shipped and it can deliver great gaming performance and some mild VR. A formidable computer can be built using used parts but sticking with new parts is preferred for its convenience. Warranty is your friend.

RAM and Store-a-plenty

A Front-mounted Samsung 850 EVO Solid-State Drive.

Drives are plentiful during the pandemic. Storage prices are somewhat close to their MSRP and are on sale often. Recently, Amazon had some 1TB Samsung SSD QVO (Quality and Value Optimized) drives for a cool $100. If you want something a little faster and you have an M.2 slot available, the Sabrent Rocket Q 1TB is a great choice for another $20. M.2, SATA SSDs and mechanical drives are everywhere, so try not to worry about storage options.

A couple of 8GB sticks of DDR3 HyperX Fury RAM.

Getting RAM is also cheap. How cheap? Dirt cheap. If only I remembered my first tip, I would have gotten deals on some good DDR4 RAM. Do not mind the picture above, it is there to set the tone.

A pair of TEAMGROUP memory on safe for $72.99, 54% off its MSRP.

All joking aside, it is a fair time to buy new RAM right now. These TEAMGROUP RAMs for example are some of the cheapest I have ever seen. I bought the same product above for about $15 more back in 2019.

That sums up the tips I have for now. Make sure to practice safety precautions during this time. When picking up packages, wear a mask and make sure you keep clear from any package until the delivery person has left.

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