a blog from CenturyLink

Tips for buying and setting up a prebuilt PC

by | Jan 6, 2023


If you’re intimidated by purchasing your first PC, you’re not alone. Gaming PCs have a reputation for being complicated and difficult to set up. However, getting your hands on your dream PC isn’t as difficult as you might think. While some people prefer to build their system from scratch, sourcing parts themselves, you can save yourself time and stress by purchasing a prebuilt PC.

In this article, you will find tips for buying your first pre-built PC, keeping your setup secure, and finding out what internet speed you’ll need for gaming.

What to know before buying your first prebuilt PC

If you’re looking for an easy solution, buying a pre-built machine might be the right option for you. Prebuilt PCs come with all the necessary components already installed. Even though they can be more expensive than building a PC yourself, you’ll save time and energy in the long run. Here are some tips you’ll want to know before buying a PC.

Woman with glasses looking at a prebuilt PC

Make sure your components are compatible

Even buying a prebuilt PC from the manufacturer doesn’t guarantee  your experience will be hassle-free. The first thing you’ll want to do when your new PC arrives is to make sure all the components are compatible and work together seamlessly. Checking this is easy. Simply go to your task manager and click on the “performance” tab. There, you should see the speed and capacity of your hardware. If something doesn’t look right, you can get it fixed before the warranty expires.

Install updates

Updating your PC is sometimes the most time-consuming part of the setup, but it’s a crucial element in ensuring an optimal experience. Walk through each of your components and download the latest updates. Make sure you also have the latest version of Windows, which will ensure your system recognizes the new updates and hardware.

Consider a VPN

A virtual private network, or VPN, is a tool that provides additional privacy and security when using the internet from a public connection. VPNs establish a secure and encrypted connection to the internet. Secondly, when you connect to a VPN server, your IP address is no longer visible to others on the internet. Using a VPN for your PC adds a layer of security that helps to keep your private information safe from individuals with bad intentions.

Man playing video games on a prebuilt PC

Make sure your PC is upgradeable

One of the biggest perks of PCs is that you can upgrade and repair your system to your heart’s delight. (Within reason, of course—you still want to stay within the terms of your warranty.) You’ll want to make sure the components of your system are removable. This means making sure parts aren’t riveted or glued into your machine. When it’s time to upgrade a part, you should be able to easily take it out and replace it with the latest and greatest new tech.

Budget for PC accessories

Although you’re purchasing a prebuilt PC, there are accessories you might want to add to your system that aren’t already installed. The first step is to determine what you plan on using your PC for. Gaming and streaming will require more devices, like microphones and headsets. If you plan on dabbling in virtual reality, you should look into VR accessories for immersive gaming. You may also want an upgraded keyboard and mouse. Video and photo editing will also involve special equipment. So before you buy your PC, it’s important to factor hardware and software prices into your budget.

Businesswoman with glasses using a prebuilt PC

Internet for gaming

Your PC will run more effectively when your internet connection is strong and reliable, especially if you’re playing a fast-paced game. You can also use the internet to chat with other gamers you’re competing against or playing with. Buying and downloading games is also much easier when you have a quick internet connection.

As gaming technology continues to emerge and evolve, internet speed is more important than ever. Options such as CenturyLink fiber internet can provide you with a fast, reliable connection to improve latency in gaming and facilitate quicker downloads and uploads. Learn more about selecting an internet speed for the best gaming experience.

Businesswoman using a prebuilt PC at home

How to keep your prebuilt PC safe and secure

Now that you have your dream PC setup, keeping your devices and network secure is a top priority. Cybersecurity plays an essential role in keeping our digital spaces safe. Learn more about Cybersecurity 101 and why you must secure your data, devices, and network. You may already be taking the right steps to keep yourself safe online, like following online security best practices and using strong passwords. However, practicing good cybersecurity doesn’t have to fall only on your shoulders. Check out our article on tips and tools for cybersecurity.

What does your dream PC setup look like? Share your inspiration with us in the comments below.

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<a href="https://discover.centurylink.com/author/emilyr" target="_self">Emily Richey</a>

Emily Richey


Emily Richey is the Content Manager for the CenturyLink and Quantum Fiber blogs. A recent graduate of Pace University NYC, she's an avid reader and writer. She spends most of her free time in bookstores and cafes, seeking the perfect cup of coffee.