When we think of the cost of building a PC it’s often only the core components we consider. Which graphics card to get, or what motherboard to pair with your shiny new CPU. You know, all the essential stuff that you need a gaming PC up and running. Some, however, like going a bit above and beyond. They won’t be seen in a shirt and shorts, they want the full three-piece suit. PC’s souped with all sorts of cosmetics and accessories so everyone knows just how badass the hardware is inside.

Case mods are the most extreme example of this. Some avid PC builders make an absolute mockery of a stereotypical beige box, doing feats as far reaching as housing the entire PC inside a desk, or installing it inside an actual fish tank and cooling it with mineral oil.

Some of us like to keep things a little simpler, like a modest tempered glass side to a case so we can show off the internals. You can easily spend more making your PC look pimped out than you spend on the components themselves.

One of the more popular, and affordable, customization options is water cooling. It can get expensive if you go extreme with it, but at a relatively small cost you can get some funky water pipes flowing through your system, amped up even more with some custom lighting. It helps as well that water cooling isn’t just for looks - its primary benefit is of course keeping your system cooler, which will help with overclocking.

It’s not always about excess either. There’s a lot to be said for the minimalist build. Stripping a PC down to its barest essentials or the smallest possible case so it does precisely the opposite - not get attention. In some cases the PC can be pretty much invisible, housed within an ornament or even within the desk itself.

So how much do you prioritise customizing your PC above and beyond the necessities? How much are you willing to spend on it? And what’s your number one priority in a custom build?

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