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Here's why you should build your next PC

Intel Motherboard

Custom PCs like Alienware used to be regarded as seriously overpriced hardware, but the price of pre-built PCs have actually decreased somewhat in recent years. Bring in discounts, promotions and competitive pricing and you have more affordable options. That said, it's still relatively difficult to locate a read-to-order system that can match the price, configuration and expandability of a rig you put together yourself.

Why should you build your next PC?


Zotac GTX 1070

The main reason people enjoy building their own PC is it enables them to go shopping for components, as opposed to a single system that can be lightly configured. You'll be able to pick and choose exactly what will be inside the very chassis you end up selecting. It's an incredible feeling, knowing that a full batch of PC internals are on their way to your doorstep. The time arrives to prepare the workshop and brush the dust of the trusty screwdriver.

As well as picking parts out, going for a custom build enables one to get really creative when it comes to cooling components and adding personalized elements to the system. Think custom water cooling with colored coolant, LED lighting effects, high-quality case fans, and preparations for an overclocking environment. There are some magical PC designs out on the web and at various gaming and technology trade shows.

The custom build is also likely easier to upgrade and swap out new parts. Some pre-built systems could be designed in such a way to discourage the owner to remove the side panel and take a peek inside to throw in upgraded RAM or a new GPU, without having to go back through the company. That and putting everything together yourself ensures you know exactly where each component is located, not to mention having cables managed exactly how you wish.

It's also cheaper. Even taking into account Windows licensing, peripherals and other extras, packing in some serious hardware will save you some cash if you put it all together and don't go through a third-party. You're also likely able to go for more advanced components and enjoy features like overclocking, which may not have been available with a similar pre-built system.

Finally, a PC you put together yourself is quite the object to show off. Go on, be proud of your hard work.

Why you perhaps shouldn't

PC Build

It's not all good news when it comes to building your own PC. If you're looking at this option for the very first time and have little experience under your belt, you'll need to take note of a few reasons as to why pre-built can be the better option. If you do not have the knowledge in putting together a PC and know no one who does, simply shopping for components can be quite the daunting task.

What do you need? Is a Core i5 processor overkill? Will it work with an NVIDIA GPU? What the hell is TDP? These are just some of the questions that will likely fill the mind. Luckily, there are some handy guides available to walk through the installation of components, and there are even calculation tools that can tell if components will be compatible and if everything will work when you hit that power button for the first time.


Alienware X51 R2

The whole process takes more effort too. Even for those who know exactly what they're doing, putting together a PC can take some time, especially if there's an issue or component that's DOA (dead on arrival). This brings me to the next potential downfall for building your own PC — warranties. Instead of having a warranty arranged with a retailer or company that supplied a pre-build PC, you'd be dealing with a manufacturer of an individual component, and that's after you work out which part is causing the problem.

Companies that churn out pre-built systems often buy components in bulk and enjoy better pricing on licensing for operating systems and optional extras. When one takes into account promotions and more aggressive pricing by companies like Dell, you could find a pre-built PC that cost around the same as picking out parts and throwing everything together yourself. It all depends on the type of machine you're after, but usually speaking you'll save some pennies going out on your own.

What's best for you?

Insomnia PC

If you don't have the time, don't care about potential savings (or find a seriously good deal on a unit), don't know what you're doing, or simply do not trust your own judgement when it comes to picking components and installing everything, pre-built or all-in-one PCs are the ideal option for you. You'll be able to configure the machine you want to a degree and simply turn the PC on when it arrives. Job done.

For everyone else, custom PC building is still considered the more affordable and enjoyable route. That and it's rewarding to witness the end result.

Rich Edmonds
Rich Edmonds

Rich Edmonds is Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him over on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.

  • That's what I had in mind until Surface Studio came along. Not so much of a gamer.
  • I hope that the Xbox Wireless chip becomes available for those that want to build their own PC and connect Xbox accessories without having to take up a USB port with the adapter. 
  • They new Xbox controllers have Bluetooth support.... And there are options to easily add Bluetooth to a pc...
  • 1) I don't trust Bluetooth to be stable enough for a controller.  2) I already own an Elite controller, and there isn't a Bluetooth option for that yet. 
  • I'd go wired then. Wired wont ever let you down.
  • Isn't the DualShock 4 a Bluetooth controller? Seems to be just fine there.
  • Are there motherboards with native Bluetooth already though? Xbox wireless could well begin becoming a standard.
  • Even a low-end MB I picked up for my folks 1,5 years ago had BT built in
  • Some do, but getting a PCIe one means you can get wifi and BT support, newer versions, and father range than built in, due to electrical interference, metal cases, or no antenna. You also have more options.
  • um... they do. Buy one Xbox for PC controller and it comes with the adapter for up to (I think) 8 devices. But the new controller have BT built in which is much easier to attach to a PC
  • I don't want the USB adapter, I want it built in chip. Lenovo's Cube PC and the Surface Studio both have the chip built in. Again, there's nbo Bluetooth Elite controller, and even if there was I'd rather pay $25 for the chip instead of $150 for a new controller. 
  • If it's a matter of aesthetics, you could probably use the motherboard's USB headers to wire one up inside your case. 
  • Are you really that lacking in USB ports? My case has six on the front and probably eight on the back. I think the most I ever have in-use is six (mouse, two for keyboard, Game Golf, phone charger, and a wildcard option).
  • Depends on what you use your computer for. As a video professional, I use a lot of USB ports. Mouse, Keyboard, dongles for video editing and titling software, USB 3 drives for video projects, etc.
  • Of course it varies by the user, but how many are you realistically using at a time? Are you actually having to make decisions and sacrifices on devices because you lack USB ports (in which case, a USB hub is always an option)? If you know you need a lot of USB ports, it makes morse sense to plan ahead at build time and get a case and board with enough ports (part of why I picked my case is its 6 USB ports up front). It'd be nice if we could get boards/cases/expansion cards to the XB1 wireless, but I'd argue they are not necessary, and it would be more economically friendly to buy a USB hub or expansion card, plus a $20-25 wireless XB1 adapter, rather than hoping MS makes an overpriced add-on to be placed inside the PC.
  • Not everyone has your set up. I have 10 ports and they are just about used up. 2 for keyboard, mouse, webcam, mic, guitar interface, phone charger, card reader, rocksmith cable, and one for adding external storage options.
  • "Not everyone has your set up." That sentence is the reason you're such a displeasure to talk to, and why I rarely reply to your omments. Without that sentence, your commentis reasonable explanation of a different use case. With it, it's judgmental garbage that states the obvious, wastes words,and is generally condescending for no reason. I never said everyone had my setup. I asked him a questio and explained what I have, stating I have way more ports than I need. You're just being a jerk (have to pick  word the overly sensitive filters on this site won't take out) and make the discussion worse with that tone. What's more, you didn't even get to a point where my point (that running out of USB ports on my PC is hard to do) is disproven. Now that I'm home, I checked, and I have a dozen USB ports--6 front (which I know is a lot for most, it's usually 4, but it's part of why I picked a case that fits my needs) and 6 back (which is about standard, maybe even a couple fewer than newer boards). So, thanks for essentially supporting what I said wle being a complete tool, as you often are.
  • Actually your initial statement of "are you really that lacking in USB ports" is the judgemental @$$ statement. You don't know what he has what he uses, or even why USB is an issue for him. You just go off about what your set up is with the assumption that either you're the average when it comes to enthusiast builds or that he is below average (which is fairly typical of your comments, your way is the right way) You regularly fail to understand that different people have not only different needs, but just different wants. You are nobody to even question how many ports he has/needs or what he plugs into them. He knows what he needs and why, plain and simple.
  • Can't everyone just state they are too lazy to unplug something? That's what this comes down to. No one has shown they use five million ports all at once. And a hub is an option. I'd much rather get the motherboard that has 99% of what I want as opposed to limiting my choices immediately because I can't switch out a plug.
  • I'm not a xbox controller fan so hope they can get the ps4 controller working wirelessly. I can plug and play with wire but wirelessly nothing in windows 10.
  • You want DS4Windows. Once setup and paired via BT, Just press the PS button to connect the controller.
  • This is what you need, lol. Even comes with black, red, or green PCB:
  • Building PC became as a kind of competition here, in Russia. There you have massive forums with huge threads, news about new components are like Second Coming - they starts became usual fights and argues from Intel/AMD/NVIDIA fans. And new people, who want to get cheaper way by building their own PCs, meet help from experienced persons. So, yeah, building PC is life, building PC is live. No alternatives. Even my laptop is modded.
  • Used to be like that here too. My last build looked like a v8 mopar motor....liquid cooled EVERYTHING. Even had the MB chips LC'ed. Nice UV lighting etc. I just got sick of the Noise of 50 fans going because I had it overclocked to the moon. So, I went with an antec sonata case, added extra noise suppression, super quiet coolers and fans, and when that machine was workin hard, I never even heard it. MUCH BETTER. I am thinking about building another since I never did it in years!
  • The one thing I find with these prebuilt machines, is the motherboard is always a crock of s***. It's always a part that's custom and is stripped bare. Things like USB bandwidth are always tight and there is often a lack of ports for upgradability. That's biggest difference between buying pre-built and building yourself.
  • Always nice to open one up and find it has just two RAM slots or no USB 3.0 header or asinine cable management that requires complex dismantling to replace a bad PSU.
  • I like gaming on my PC, but I don't need the latest and greatest components. I was able to get a prebuilt HP desktop at a great price and much cheaper than I could build it for. However, I now want a better graphics card and I'm hesitant to do so since I don't know the components and I want to swap an Nvidia card in place of my current ATi card. I would definitely build my PC if I wanted the best available components.
  • Hi, I recommend a rx 460, or gtx 1050ti. But those cards are only aimed at 1080p. But first check that you have a PCI-E 16x Slot physically on your motherboard, and there is no physical restrictions.
    Also get cards without external PCI-E power connectors. Many a time have I upgraded a pre-built, and its mostly easy.
  • Thanks for the info. I'll have to do some research.
  • I built a lot of machines this year mostly 400ish pound builds with overclocked componants, you save loads.
  • On the warranty note yes you don't have a central warranty but often the individual component warranty outstrip any Pre-builts.  Hard Drives can run on 3-7 year warranties; processors can be up to 5 years; video cards can be a lifetime warranty and same with RAM; so yes its a bit more of a hassle having multiple companies to deal with but its certainly longer then any pre-built PC's warranty without paying for it and even then they usually won't go past 3 year warranties.
  • Plus there's the fact that not everything's going to blow out at once, so you'll only ever be dealing with one warranty at a time. Maybe 2 if your unlucky. Also on the plus side, if something breaks, you don't have to send your whole PC off, just the broken part, which you can also replace in the meantime for the cost of just that part. Then sell it or possibly even return it when the repaired part comes back.
  • Also nice to have my SSD go out and slap in my old one I keep as a spare while the bad one is sent back. Beats taking the whole machine to Best Buy and waiting a week or something.
  • I can't wait to show off my first custom water loop!
  • Do they still sell small shuttle boxes? I'm looking for a small out of the way desktop/tower for my wife's office
  • They do! There are different system form factors, ATX (standard size), Micro ATX (considerably smaller) and ITX (about the same size as Micro ATX). Be sure to take a good look at the case you're buying since an ITX motherboard won't fit in an ATX or Micro ATX case and vice versa. I suggest using PCpartpicker to compile a list of components, since it will filter out incompatible components. Quick warning: smaller PC form factors are quite a bit more difficult to build, so getting a friend or family member with experience to help out would be a great idea!
  • Thanks!
  • There are many options out there from various manufacturers.  From Shuttle-like boxes to something tiny like the Intel NUC.  You'll just need to figure out what type of options your wife needs.  You can also build a computer in cases the size of breadboxes complete with a full sized video card.
  • I'm amongst those who prefers custom-built PCs, specially since I can do most of my work from home (when I can't I also prefer a Surface Pro to a laptop. It's thinner and lighter and does all I need it to do on the go). Not only I am free of the programmed obsolescence that laptops bring, I can literally upgrade any component without having to buy an entirely new machine.
    And of course, it also allows me to keep the same computer for years and years, thus reducing the upgrade costs. However, I never assemble my PCs. It's something that requires patience and care and I normally lack both.
    So I pick up all the parts for the computer from the tech retailer I normally use and then have it assembled for me. That immediately solves the problem of warranties as I immediately have the 2 year legal warranty over every single component I pick. Even when upgrading I take the PC to them for them to upgrade it, thus keeping always all warranties. For those who don't know much about PC building, some tech retailers also help there. For example, if I wanted I could write the store I normally buy from and tell them "I want a PC build for this, this and this" and they'll present me with several options of different builds with different prices.
  • I'm more than likely going to build a PC next year, and my plan is to ask one of the component stores if I can build it in their spaces, that way if I have any questions they are on hand to help me. 
  • There are pros and cons, definitely, to building your own systems. For me, there are more pros than cons, usually. I've been doing it for many years  (though I veered away when I went with a Surface Pro 3 as my primary machine for well over a year). One thing you neglected are the occasional incompatibility issues you can run into with components that should in theory work together but just don't. All motherboard manufacturers have their lists of tested "compatible RAM" -- for some stupid, stupid reason, certain brands of RAM cause issues with certain brands of motherboards. This is just not something that most folks would even THINK about, let alone plan for when shopping for components. Probably the worst part for a new builder is the shopping -- what is compatible with what, adequate power needs, paying attention to socket types, bus speeds and minor details (like does this CPU cooler or graphics card fit in my case or are my SATA cables long enough to fit and go where I need them to go -- those sound like dumb questions, but this stuff can be an issue). It's easier today to do these things than it was 10 years ago for sure, but still -- I wouldn't recommend a total newbie to nitty gritty PC specs and building just jump in without help. It might end up being a very expensive learning experience (y'know... learning that static is bad for that brand new, $300 CPU is costly if you zap it because you didn't ground yourself properly). And then finally, of course, there's always the troubleshooting part when things don't work right. Nice article, though -- it's always good to see that folks still build their own rigs like I do.
  • When I purchased my last Lenovo laptop, I swapped the HDD for an SSD, and I wasn't sure how it was going to go when I reinstalled Windows 10. To my surprise, I had to do practically nothing. The EFI bios handled Windows authentication, and I didn't have to install any drivers, not even for hot keys. That says a lot about how far we've come in both buying off the shelf PCs and the process of installing Windows.  If my experience is any guide, it certainly makes it much easier for us DIYers to justify simply buying off the shelf and making minor tweaks. Maybe not at the Alienware level, but with lesser needs you may come out ahead. 
  • Yes, we've come a long way from ribbon cables and memory that could be inserted multiple ways.
  • I'm a PC gamer. So I build my self my own PC. Been doing so since the 90. My next build is due since my i7 950 is showing is age. I'm waiting to see if the next AMD Zen will be competitive performance / price for the next build. I have already a decent video card and SSD drive. All I would have to do is change motherboard and ram. That would not be easy to do with a genuine pre built PC. On a side note. I am kinda looking at gaming laptops. But, they are way too expensive.
  • I helped a friend build his computer a few years ago. It was quite enjoyable and surprisingly easy. I think I'm going to build myself one sometime soon.
  • It was my dream for many years to build my own PC myself, and last boxing day I fulfilled this dream for less than $200 when I built a practice machine. I keep upgrading it whenever I catch a good deal, and I'm looking forward to this Black Friday.
  • The only problem I have with custom rigs (I've built two high-end PCs for myself over the years) is that chassis design still looks like crap. They are clearly still being designed for 15 year old boys, who want the casing to look like a transformer with a ton of jagged edges, LED-lights, and what have you. I just want a minimalistic full tower chassis that looks like it's part of my home decoration, similar to a Surface in design.
  • You mean like fractal cases? (;
  • I think you're not looking in the right place.  Check out cases from Antec, Fractal design and Silverstone.
  • You're right there. I decided about 8 years ago to buy an Antec case, top of the range. It has 3 layers of sound proofing, easy to get at hard drive holders and everything done with thumb screws. I'm now on my 4th rebuild with the same case and because I know it so well any work I do is always an easy fix. Well worth the expense.
  • Totally agree :)
  • There are all kinds Gustav. Well there were when I was building. My antec sonata was very "surface" like. Also Lian Li had nice full aluminum cases that are very industrial in design. Skip the bling and go for the quiet. Since I am a mechanic, and custom bike/sled/atv builder now, I always find it relaxing building my own stuff. Time for a new desktop. Oh damn, there goes some more space on my desk. I hide all cables, etc inside the case. Funny, the last time I built a computer SSD was not even a thing. I can just imagine how fast a raid 0 system is with two new SSDs. WOW!
  • I didn't find any new thing in this article.
    Most of Indian home users are going through with assembled desktop PC.
    But nowadays, some professionals and middle class people made desktop PC in their affordable price.
  • I did exactly this just over 4 years ago and I have been recommending my friends to go this route as well.
  • Great place to start is They are available in a few different countries and pull in pricing for the majors shops in your country.  They also have dimensions and such that it will warn you if parts are going to fit. i.e. GPU card is too long, CPU fan is too high, more RAM modules than slots on the mobo. Has price checks from all kinds of locations and offers up the best price. The power check tool tells you approximately how much power your system will use.  Tons of build guides and user submitted builds to give you ideas.
  • I built my own PC's for many years. I no longer do it because you can find prebuilt PC's that generally meet your specifications for less money than doing it yourself. It used to be a huge money saver building your own, not so much anymore.
  • Not sure I agree entirely with this article. One advantage to the prebuilt is that the builder generally has worked out all the bugs and conflicts among drivers and components. Systems are tested extensively before shipping. When I built my own I found that I was constantly having to tweak and change settings to make everything run well. Think of it like a car. If you build your own hotrod from the ground up then you are going to have to keep working at it to get it right with little or no support. A car bought from the dealer will generally run well from the start and when it doesn't, the dealer will service it. Also with profit margins so razor thin on electronics, the cost of building your own is generally about the same and in many cases, even more than the pre-built unless you are using last year's components bought on clearance. The only reason I see to build your own is if it is a hobby or project that you enjoy. I think prebuilds are the way to go for the general masses.
  • Plus you get a Windows license. Often when folks talk about building your own and make comparisons to retail, they leave off the $100 Windows purchase. If you already have a copy from the system you're destroying, that is one thing, but even then I don't know how complicated it gets reusing a Windows 10 license on completely new hardware, and some people might want to keep the old machine going.  That said, I loved building my own setups, and I have made many. I just haven't needed to do so in a long time, as I don't game on PC anymore. The ergonomics of mouse and keyboard gaming are more taxing for me than an Xbox controller, and once you go the controller-only route, you might as well just get a console. 
  • I've always self built. You know what's going in there and can work to your budget
  • How does a newbie get started building a pc I mean everybody has to start somewhere. Can anybody recommend a good website for the total beginner. Definitely something I have been interested in starting.
  • This web site helped me alot:, you will love it.
  • A Modular PC concept in future ! why not ?
  • I have built my own pc's since 1983.Mainly I don't like anything Intel.Their products are very unreliable. I'm now using AMD FX6300-6 core processor with 3.5 ghz processor and 28 gig of memory with a 1 tirebyte ssd. this pc is very reliable and very fast.It cost me $360.oo not bad at all.
  • Intel is far from unreliable. My AMD processor carried the load fine for about five years, and it still is functional. However, my Intel is approaching three years without a hiccup either, and when I do my next upgrade (hopefully to Zen), I'll buy a micro-ATX case and board l, throw my Haswell i5 in it, and let it be an HTPC for a few years longer. Whenever I see someone use an old date like you did, it worries me you are projecting frustrations of long ago onto modern reality. As an example, my dad won't touch and MSi product, even though they are very popular and well-liked by many, because they had a major problem with a string of boards 15 years ago and left the customers out to dry. Intel is currently the only company making high-end CPUs for everyday consumers. AMD hasn't put out a new FX line in 2-3 years, after giving up on the non-competitive family of Bulldozer stuff that lost in most performance rests while sucking power at a much greater rate (50% more than Intel, in some cases).
  • I used to build all my PCs many years ago. I was so proud of my dual socket Pentium II system with a Fire GL card. Then I stopped for about 10 yrs and I'm somewhat intimidated about doing it again. I want to build a dual socket Xeon E5 workstation that is liquid cooled and used a GTX1070 for its GPU. I am mainly wary about all the liquid cooling and how to properly set it up. It wasn't around back when I used to build PCs. I also am unsure about motherboards because I know many servers don't really use good graphics cards, so I'm afraid of getting a mobo that will end up creating bottlenecks even if I have good components. I guess I have a lot of research to do, but I'm still about six months away from building it anyway.
  • Just watch for the PCI-E x16 slot on the board. As for the water, depends on the approach. I have no insight for building a big loop, but the simple stuff like Corsair's H100i just mounts on the CPU, then has a fan that screws into a fan mount on a case. You just need to check that you get a case with a fan slot for it (well, two, if you go dual-CPU).
  • There are closed loop setups you can buy now, and most CPU coolers today come with the necessary mounting hardware to work with whatever socket you have. 
  • I have been using PCs since the late 90s, before that I used the Commodore Amiga. I have never had a PC I didn't build myself. I wouldn't have it any other way. Of course, many of you like minded people know what a pain it can be when you are using the latest gear and various drivers are ill equipped to handle the new parts. Still there is just the satisfaction that during the process of researching the build and parts, and creating something yourself that didn't exist before, that keeps us pushing those boundaries and pioneering special builds. Then there is the fun factor. Except when you get a blank screen and a blinking cursor, that's no fun. If someone asked me about it I would say, "if you just want a very basic PC for web surfing, buy one" however if you want a Ferrari as your daily driver, you need to get your hands dirty, or prepare to part with mega bucks.
  •   After several years I decided to take the risk and build a gaming machine (on a budget goal), so I did. And yes it worked then it didn't, then it did and now it's great, and I not only feel proud but fully in control of quality that went into the build on both hardware and software. To those undecided, find someone to give you a hand and have them help you (not do it for you), you'll love it.
  • Totally recommend it, it's therapeutic to run the wires hidden, etc...! good stuff! The last cpu cooler I used was an arctic cooling unit...Was massive, but silent.
  • I am typing this on a custom-built gaming PC that is using mostly out of date, mostly hand-me-down components to serve as an entry point for this lifelong console gamer into the world of PC gaming (or in my case, a RE-ENTRY point as I did have a brief flirtation period with PC gaming back in the 2000-2002 window, with a DIY gaming PC back then, but it's really been that long since I have.) While that PC of mine from the bygone days was built entirely by yours truly, I did for the price of pizza and beer enlist a good friend to help me put this current machine together. That said, I am ABSOLUTELY COMMITTED to the DIY model for gaming PCs. I have little to no interest in things like Alienware, or Dell (at least as it concerns gaming rigs), or what have you, and have even less interest in a gaming laptop. The bang-for-the-buck factor on DIY is better, the ability to "season to taste" in configuration is way better (Red vs Blue CPU, Red vs Green GPU, and so on and so on). You can make them look however you want, and trick them out however. But most important of all for me, is they are EXPONENTIALLY more upgradable. There's no contest! So yeah, barring the unforeseen, any future PC I have will be "DIY", even if for the next couple builds, "DIY" for me actually means "DIWFfP&B" - "Do it with friends for Pizza and Beer." Depending upon how excited I am about the Nintendo Switch when we know all the details, either the Switch, or new PC components to upgrade the rig will be my #1 priority at tax time. I mean, Lord willing, I will own a Switch someday either way. Even if it's the realization of all my fears and nightmares for it, it will still be minimally good enough that I'd still want it. But if I'm a bit underwhelmed, then a new CPU/GPU/Mobo/RAM will bump it off the tax time docket. I can only squeeze so much awesome out of a tired old GTX660ti, and AMD Phenom II x4 965 black, and Asus ROG Crosshair IV Formula, so sometime in the not too distant future, upgrading will go from being nice, to being vital. That said, I use both Mac and PC, for very different use cases (other than both being more or less equally esteemed in my mind for the purpose of "general internet derping"), and just as I LOATHE the idea of a set-config little module serving as my PC, I quite paradoxically perhaps love the "it just works", grab and go, sleek stylin Mac Mini that I rawk for that side of the house. So I'm a house of paradoxes, I suppose. I'll detail my PC/Mac use cases in a reply to this. Read if you're interested, skip if you're not. Cheers!
  • How I use each machine is one part strengths of the one platform or the other inherently (PC vs Mac), and one part, strength of the setup configuration (Living room TV/Stereo/Couch/WirelessKBM vs Computer desk/Computer Monitor, etc). For some things, the strength of the platform prevails, and for other things, the strength of the configuration prevails.I believe that PCs are better for gaming (on this point, there really is no dispute). I also believe they are better for "office-y" type stuff, and the "not-fun" kinds of productivity. Macs, I believe are much better at "fun" kinds of productivity (recording music, recording podcasts, and all of that stuff.). And while I actually am a big believer in Groove, I still think that at least for the time being, I still prefer Mac for media consumption. However, I believe the living room TV set up is better for gaming (a PC strength), as well as better for media consumption (a Mac strength), where I believe a desk is better for office-y type stuff (PC strength), e-mail and PM correspondence, and recording studio applications (Mac strength). I suppose HOW I use them is more based on the set up, but choosing which rig went where was all about the strengths of the platform. My PC is in the living room, and my Mac is at the desk. I do my Nerd Noise Radio podcasts, and any music recordings entirely on the Mac. I don't really do any of it on the PC. On the other hand, I do 90+% of my gaming on the PC, and while Steam is installed on my Mac, I do precious little gaming on it. However, despite feeling that PC is slightly better for documents and e-mails and stuff, I do that stuff almost entirely on my Mac because it's so much better doing that stuff from a desk than from the couch. Conversely, while I still prefer Macs for media consumption, I do most of that (outside the podcast stuff) on the PC since it's in the living room, and a couch is way better than a desk for such things. Anyway, that's how I use. How do you? Which operating system do I like better? Well, with the advent of Win 10, for the very first time ever, I think I'd actually say I have at least a slight preference towards Windows (historically, I've always been pro-Mac). But that doesn't mean it still doesn't feel like I'm not climbing into a Cadillac whenever I sit down at my Mac. Maybe Windows is a Corvette now, but Mac will always be that super smooth thing, the first luxury beast designed for the hipsters. For as sleek and sexy, and exciting as Windows is now, it will still perhaps always be at least a little more "mullet" than the black turtle-neck Mac, at a bare minimum, it'll be more populist. But that's the beauty of being multi-platform. I don't have to choose. I love both, and I can have both. And I do very much enjoy how even with as much as both have changed over the years, you can still see and feel traces and echoes of the earliest versions of macOS in the newest Mac, and likewise, Win3.1 or even earlier in the DNA of Win10. Heck, I even want to expand beyond PC and Mac into Linux and Chrome/Android, as I can see TREMENDOUS appeal in all of them! But with as well as my life is working with just the PC and Mac, I'm not sure just how successful the other ones will be at making meaningful inroads into such a well-liked, and well established paradigm. So again, if you're multi-platform, how do you work yours? Cheers! Like my original comment, this was typed on the PC.