Building your own homegrown computer is not only a valuable skill to posses, but it is also a very simple one to learn and understand. Think of today's modern computer parts like Legos. Remember how one piece would fit nicely into another, and before you knew it you were looking at your homemade masterpiece and marveling in its sleek design and ingenuity.
Well, the days of building spaceships and robots from the simple interconnecting Lego blocks are over (well for most of us), but our own simple design ethics yet remain. What hard-core techies and companies like Dell and Compaq have been doing for years is what any computer user can learn how to do - build a computer from scratch.
Probably one of the most fun (and most painstaking) aspects of building your own computer is buying the right components. Needs differ from one person to the next and price pays a critical role in the equipment you choose.
The general rule of thumb for buying computer equipment is to buy the fastest components you can afford, and why wouldn't you? Over the past six months fierce competition between Intel and AMD have driven CPU prices so low that you can currently pick up an AMD Athlon @ 700MHz for only $186 and that's a steal. For a more in-depth discussion on choosing the right components try our monthly PC Hardware Buyers Guide.