Your new prebuilt PC is here! You set everything up and you’re so ready to get in the zone, but then you want to know if your PC can handle updates!
You don’t want to be stuck with an outdated machine, but you also don’t want to overspend on things you don’t need. So the question remains: Are Prebuilt PCs Upgradable?
While most are upgradable or partially upgradable, you should always check the technical details before you buy.
You will see that brands note down what the max capabilities are, but if you want to switch out parts like a motherboard, you might need to replace all parts if your old parts are not compatible.
Differences between a Prebuilt PC and Custom PC
To make things easy, a prebuilt PC is a set that comes with everything you need. A CPU, motherboard, hard drive, RAM, an operating system, and everything else.
A custom PC or custom build is when you buy the parts separately and put it all together yourself.
Prebuilt PCs often come as they are, with limited options to change. Usually people want to upgrade their ram or hard drives first.
What makes a PC pre-built?
The answer is in the name – prebuilt. This means that the parts have been put together for you before you even get your hands on them! All you need to do is unbox it and away you go.
Totally no shame to those who love to tinker and build their PCs but for those who don’t have the time, or would prefer not to, a prebuilt gaming PC is worth it.
Can you upgrade to a prebuilt PC?
The answer to this question isn’t as straightforward as you might hope.
In theory, yes you can upgrade your prebuilt PC. Depending on what you need you can upgrade your PC by installing a new SSD or switching out the CPU or graphics card.
These parts are designed to be swapped out, however, there is a caveat. Many times, the parts used in a prebuilt computer are low-end or mid-range parts.
The manufacturers often choose these parts because they offer the best value for money and they can get them cheaper than retail price when buying in bulk. But this doesn’t mean that you’re stuck with them forever!
Upgrading prebuilt PCs meant exchanging old parts and buying higher quality parts.
Be sure to always check the compatibility of each part or else they won’t work. Not sure what parts you have? Check your invoice or ask the manufacturer. After that, head over to PCPartPicker and put in your parts and then check all other compatible options for you.
Reasons why a pre-build might not be upgradeable
Though it is entirely possible to upgrade your PC, certain aspects may affect the performance of your computer or, the possibility of upgrading may not be possible at all. A few of these examples are:
- Your power supply may not have enough wattage.
- The CPU bottlenecks the GPU performance.
- There might not be enough space inside the computer case.
- The power supply unit might have a non-standard form factor that won’t fit most GPUs.
- Some motherboards don’t come with M.2 or NVMe slots, which are necessary for some high-end GPUs.
- If all the RAM slots on your motherboard are full or if you’re using older generation RAM, then adding a new GPU will likely cause issues.
- Finally, make sure that your motherboard has an available PCIe slot for the GPU to avoid any of these issues, it’s always best to do some research before buying a new part for your PC.
If all of these tick your list that doesn’t gel with your PC, then we’re very sorry to break it to you, but upgrading your prebuilt PC might not be possible, or it may decrease the performance of other parts in your computer.
Things to put in mind when you want to upgrade your prebuilt PC
We get it, the feeling when a new part comes out and you just have to have it. But before you run to the nearest store or click that buy button, here are a few things you should take into consideration:
- Check the part’s compatibility with your motherboard. Not all parts will work with every motherboard.
- Ensure that you have enough space inside your computer case for the new part. Some cases are smaller than others and might not accommodate certain parts.
- Make sure that your power supply has enough wattage to handle the new part. A powerful graphics card might need up to 500 watts!
- Take into account the rest of the parts of your computer. A high-end GPU will need a good CPU and plenty of RAM to reach its full potential.
In summary, a prebuilt PC can be upgradable and there are ways to get around any roadblocks you might encounter. It takes a great deal of research and knowing which parts are compatible with each other but it’s doable.
So, if you’re itching to get your hands on the latest and greatest hardware, don’t be afraid to upgrade your prebuilt machine! Just make sure that you take all of the necessary precautions first.
If you have any questions, leave a comment below and we’ll help you out.