Putting together an entire PC isn't as scary as it sounds - and it's well worth the hassle. We've put together a simple guide to assembling a PC in seven steps.

Earth yourself and discharge any static before you begin the assembly process. The motherboard and processor should be installed first, but you can fit other internal components in whichever order you find easiest, given the layout constraints of your chosen case and the cabling associated with each.

1. Carefully slide off the side of the PC case and lay it down on its side. The InWin case we've used here had a fan already attached, so we need to work around that.

First, we'll place our AMD Gigabyte motherboard in position. As well as ensuring we have the right number and positioning of risers, we need to remove a blanking plate on the case so the USB and monitor connections can be used to attach peripherals.

Having checked what goes where, carefully screw the motherboard in place.

build your own pc

Step 1: Open up the PC

2. Next, we need to fit the AMD processor. Your CPU may have come with fixative. This is to ensure a good connection and current flow. Smear a thin layer over the back of the processor before lowering it in place. Lock the heatsink over the top.

build your own pc

Step 2: Fit the processor

3. Now we can add memory. Depending on your chosen build, either install a single RAM module or a pair of matching ones.

Check your dual in-line memory modules (DIMMs) run at the same clock speed as each other and have the same amount of RAM. Push them gently but firmly into place, applying downward pressure at each end. Push their retainer clips into place.

Next page: graphics and sound cards, drives and the CPU

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Putting together an entire PC isn't as scary as it sounds - and it's well worth the hassle. We've put together a simple guide to assembling a PC in seven steps.

Steps 4 to 7

4. The graphics, sound and network cards come next. You'll need to fit your graphics card into a PCI Express slot, first removing the corresponding blanking plate on the side of the case. The ‘tail' of the card needs to line up with the screw holes on the side. Once the card is in place, secure it in place with the screws. The same principle applies to fitting the other internal media cards.

Things are slightly more complex if you're installing SLI or Crossfire dual graphics cards. Check the manual for these.

build your own pc

Step 4: Install the graphics card

5. We've chosen to install our hard-disk drive next. Simply ensure you slide it into its 3.5in bay the right way up before attaching its cables to the motherboard.

If you want to add multiple disks, you'll need to assign one as the master drive and the other(s) as slaves. To do this, adjust the ‘jumper' settings on the end of the drives. Jumpers are simply protruding prongs to one side of the drive connectors. Instructions for the necessary settings will be shown in your drive's manual.

6. Next, you'll probably want to fit the optical drive or drives. Blu-ray Disc drives have the same sort of chassis as a DVD or CD writer. These all slot into an available 3.5in bay. You may need to remove a panel from the front of the case to make your drives accessible. These clip into place and are easy to remove.

build your own pc

Step 6: Add an optical drive

7. The CPU is the largest of all the components in the PC. Check you've got it the right way round and that it's sufficiently powerful to provide a constant amount of power to the processor, graphics card and internal drives. It will come with more than enough cables and connectors for your needs. The FSP one we've used here is a 500W model with a 20+4 pin connection setup. This refers to the fact that there's a solid block of 20 pins, with a separate four-pin block next to it that plugs in to the motherboard.

Related articles:

PC Advisor's comprehensive PC-building masterclass.

Read PC Advisor's expert reviews of the latest components.