When it comes to buying a new desktop PC, any hardware buff will tell you there's nothing better than building your own machine. If not for the enjoyment of putting all the components together, then simply for the comfort that comes with knowing you are getting high quality parts.

However, going the homebrewed route isn't everyone's cup of tea. You have to research and purchase every item, assemble it all, and troubleshoot any issues along the way. The time and expertise required to build a new computer drive some to purchase pre-built systems from companies like HP, Lenovo or Dell – but just how much would you be overpaying? Is it really worth the effort to build your own rig?


With that in mind, we've chosen three popular desktop series, configuring them as closely as possible to our own Enthusiast's PC. After the table below, we'll briefly dissect each offering to determine how it fares against our home-built machine.

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