A passion for configurations


At first glance, building a gaming computer can seem exceptionally difficult for many aspiring gamers. Persevering through this challenge, however, are sophomores Elina Pae and Jason Baik.

Although prebuilt options exist, Baik and Pae wanted to choose their components and assemble them on their own due to their passion for computer assembly and gaming.

“My interest in computers started when I was first introduced to digital art and graphic design,” Pae said. “ I came to realize that my computer was not powerful enough to handle those tasks, so I made the decision to upgrade.”

Both Pae and Baik struggled with their devices being far too slow for their goals. After building his own computer, Baik built multiple PC’s as well for his family and friends. 

“I have always been interested in assembling parts and I’ve also wanted a powerful computer to run my games and creative programs, so this experience was a plus-plus for me,” Baik said. 

The sophomores purchased their parts through online and physical stores like Micro Center, NewEgg and Amazon. The two said that each of their building practices were relatively smooth and simple, receiving occasional aid from online forums such as Linus Tech Tips on YouTube.

However, despite the relatively fluid building process, a tedious step known as cable management proved to be a small challenge for Baik. Typically, this step requires builders to wire and sort cables to make the overall build look cleaner and well organized.

“The process is pretty smooth until you have to do cable management. It usually takes me around 30 minutes to an hour, depending on what I’m working with,” Baik said. 

Throughout the building process, the two had to make sure they stayed focused and paid attention while doing the more meticulous building steps to ensure the finished product worked properly.

“I had to constantly stay organized since there were so many easy-to-lose parts, especially screws and cables,” Pae said. “ I also had to constantly make sure that everything was properly screwed in and fully put into place.”

As small as it may sound, building computers left permanent impressions in Pae’s and Baik’s lives. Pae said that she expects her future career to involve computers in some form, even if she’s not sure what she wants to specialize in yet.

“I think that being able to build a computer would be really beneficial if I want to work with computer hardware,” Pae said. “Whether I go into the hardware or software field, detecting bugs and promptly fixing them would be easier for me since I’ve built similar devices before.”

Baik said that having built multiple computers in his life made him more capable and confident in the computer building field.

“With the amount of building experience I have, I feel that I could confidently assist any aspiring builders or even build computers for other people in the future,” he said.