[SOLVED] What is the best way to sell computers you build yourself?

Jan 2, 2021
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Is there a good way to make your own computers and sell them? I have been looking at ways to do this which could make money, and I have found some ideas, but I don't know if they are feasible. First of all, I have found i3-10100F cpus for under MSRP on a tray, and I know there are CPU coolers for less than getting the in box CPU cooler Intel provides.
I am also wondering what users mostly value in a prebuilt PC. I have looked up many PCs online, and for the most part the PCs are either good CPUs with underpowered graphics cards or midrange to high range CPUs with high end graphics cards. I also notice that not a single prebuilt PC I have seen does not have RGB. How important is the PC looking cool for prebuilt users vs. overall functionality, and what exactly are the best ways to save money when making PCs to sell?
 

Karadjgne

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Depends on just who you are selling to. If it's teenagers wanting to game, you need something serious, or they'll laugh and walk away. If it's grandma websurfing, you could get away with anything from a gt720 on up.

Grandmas don't want flashy lighting unless they are buying for grandkids, parents don't mind flashy lights as long as it's good enough for their kids school work, some even prefer a downgraded gpu just to prevent game usage temptation.

The type of clientele will tell you exactly what needs to be in the pc.

If I was to get back into that business, I'd do both. Basic systems, some prebuilts, barebones etc and have the custom option for ppl who want more than what you have in hand.

But the pc's need to be above average in build, no sloppy crap. It's your name on it. Even the cheapest pos you sell must look show-worthy. Include instructions for maintenence and windows registration, pre-load freeware like ccleaner, Coretemp and malwarebytes etc.

Word of mouth sells more pc's than Craigslist.

And give a warranty. 1 year on the build, not on the parts or software. If it breaks, you fix for free and they pay for parts only or rma from manufacturer/vendor, if they break it they pay for it. Just be reasonable on price.

You make me happy, I tell my wife. You make her happy she tells everyone on her Facebook/hip-town pages.

Oh, and get hooked up with some very easy to use web cams/mics. There's a lot of ppl at home and grandparents especially will be sold on the chance to talk to their kids/grandkids for free by internet without having to try and crowd in on a cellphone.
 
Is there a good way to make your own computers and sell them? I have been looking at ways to do this which could make money, and I have found some ideas, but I don't know if they are feasible. First of all, I have found i3-10100F cpus for under MSRP on a tray, and I know there are CPU coolers for less than getting the in box CPU cooler Intel provides.
I am also wondering what users mostly value in a prebuilt PC. I have looked up many PCs online, and for the most part the PCs are either good CPUs with underpowered graphics cards or midrange to high range CPUs with high end graphics cards. I also notice that not a single prebuilt PC I have seen does not have RGB. How important is the PC looking cool for prebuilt users vs. overall functionality, and what exactly are the best ways to save money when making PCs to sell?
1000% RGB is a must have.
Whether it being in a $10 case or a $150, you will always have a advantage of RGB, mainly in the case fans.
What they often do is put a good cpu, find some garbage cooler, put the cheapest ram they can find, put in the worst possible single fan gpu model they find and list it as "$600 BEAST".
I dont have anything against those people since thats ussually the only way to make any profit by selling pc's.
Its not a easy job.
 
Jan 2, 2021
95
5
35
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1000% RGB is a must have.
Whether it being in a $10 case or a $150, you will always have a advantage of RGB, mainly in the case fans.
What they often do is put a good cpu, find some garbage cooler, put the cheapest ram they can find, put in the worst possible single fan gpu model they find and list it as "$600 BEAST".
I dont have anything against those people since thats ussually the only way to make any profit by selling pc's.
Its not a easy job.
Would you need a case with RGB or a cheap case without it would be fine? Looking at USAFRet's comment, I see how refurbished could be the way to go. Can you sell the computers with unactivated Windows, and should you include peripherals?
 
Jan 2, 2021
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To give you an example of what I am thinking about, I am leaving a PCPartPicker list:
PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: Intel Core i3-10100F 3.6 GHz Quad-Core Processor ($83.93)
CPU Cooler: ARCTIC Alpine 12 LP CPU Cooler ($9.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: ASRock H510M-HDV Micro ATX LGA1200 Motherboard ($68.98 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws V Series 8 GB (1 x 8 GB) DDR4-2666 CL15 Memory ($40.98 @ Newegg)
Storage: Kingston A400 240 GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($34.99 @ Amazon)
Video Card: PNY GeForce GT 1030 2 GB Video Card ($80.00)
Case: Phanteks Eclipse P300A Mesh ATX Mid Tower Case ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair CV 450 W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($29.99 @ Newegg)
Case Fan: upHere T7SYC7 120 mm Fans 3-Pack ($27.99 @ Amazon)
Custom: MFTEK Gaming Keyboard and Mouse Combo with Large Mouse Pad, RGB Rainbow Backlit Gaming Keyboard and Illuminated Gaming Mouse, USB Wired Set for Computer PC Gamer Laptop Office Work ($19.98 @ Amazon)
Total: $446.82
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available


What parts of this could be changed or removed to improve the price/sellability? Also I know right now the 1030s are going for at least $85-90, if that. I don't like the idea of giving the user the worst 2133 ram when the 2666 is only $5 more, and I chose the Phanteks Eclipse as an idea because it has good airflow and a glass side window. If there is a much cheaper case with a window to see the RGB that would be great too, but I couldn't find one on PCPartPicker. Also, are the peripherals necessary? I see most prebuilts on the market have a keyboard and mouse combo.
 
Last edited:

USAFRet

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Can you sell the computers with unactivated Windows
Very much a grey area, and you shrink your buyer pool.
I wouldn't.

If you're selling a system for $500, in the users mind (and in fact) that will be $600 out of their pocket.

If instead you're buying a refurb to fix and flip, that (the motherboard) should come with its own license already, which you can transfer to you, and then transfer to the eventual purchaser.

Of course, YOU have to be VERY careful of the provenance of where THAT license comes from.
Per the EULA, the seller is required to transfer the associated paperwork. COA, license key, whatever else.
If that does not happen, suspect it is not a valid license. Which means you buy a valid one, and pass that $100 through to the purchaser.

Just like if it needs a replacement drive. Just another operating expense.

Licensed software is not much different than hardware. It costs what it costs.
 
Just for a point of reference on this....

I have an in to pick up off lease office computers about every two and half years. They are typically about 4 gens behind and are quality office models. The last bunch I got were Optiplex with a 4th gen i5. I got them STUPID cheap, like under $40 a pop. I then have to source some cheap SSD, and more importantly my time to go through the stack, get them working, licensed, and pics and such ready for sale. Most often I sit on them for weeks unless I am LITERALLY just a few dollars above what I have in them and practically giving away my time.
The last bunch I had, purchased just under $40, as above, and took two months to sell them all from $60-100 based on amount of RAM and SSD size. I sold a few of them to a local retailer that has a store front. He sold them for around double what he paid and had them all gone in days.

To my own "advantage", he did mention that if I got more looking for an easy turn to call him.
I have been doing this for years and this is the first legitimate possibility of return business I have ever gotten.
 
Reactions: Master Djoza
Just for a point of reference on this....

I have an in to pick up off lease office computers about every two and half years. They are typically about 4 gens behind and are quality office models. The last bunch I got were Optiplex with a 4th gen i5. I got them STUPID cheap, like under $40 a pop. I then have to source some cheap SSD, and more importantly my time to go through the stack, get them working, licensed, and pics and such ready for sale. Most often I sit on them for weeks unless I am LITERALLY just a few dollars above what I have in them and practically giving away my time.
The last bunch I had, purchased just under $40, as above, and took two months to sell them all from $60-100 based on amount of RAM and SSD size. I sold a few of them to a local retailer that has a store front. He sold them for around double what he paid and had them all gone in days.

To my own "advantage", he did mention that if I got more looking for an easy turn to call him.
I have been doing this for years and this is the first legitimate possibility of return business I have ever gotten.
Good luck!
 
Reactions: punkncat
Good luck!
I appreciate the thought.

This is something I do completely as a side benefit to a connection I have. I don't particularly pursue it actively beyond a very irregular side gig that I enjoy doing. I get the typical "build me a computer" stuff from people I know. Most often on less than a shoestring budget and along that line fell into this by accident.
 
Reactions: Master Djoza

jtk2515

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Is there a good way to make your own computers and sell them? I have been looking at ways to do this which could make money, and I have found some ideas, but I don't know if they are feasible. First of all, I have found i3-10100F cpus for under MSRP on a tray, and I know there are CPU coolers for less than getting the in box CPU cooler Intel provides.
I am also wondering what users mostly value in a prebuilt PC. I have looked up many PCs online, and for the most part the PCs are either good CPUs with underpowered graphics cards or midrange to high range CPUs with high end graphics cards. I also notice that not a single prebuilt PC I have seen does not have RGB. How important is the PC looking cool for prebuilt users vs. overall functionality, and what exactly are the best ways to save money when making PCs to sell?
I was doing the 2620 v3 and buying like 10 for 15$ each then buying some decent motherboards for 63$ from alibaba that I can flash the bios on for turbo unlock and selling them with cheap 570 or 580 that I paid around 70-110$. As for now I reordered like 20 motharboard's and CPU's and have been sitting on them for 5 months because I cannt find the GPU's. I might just buy 710's for 40$ each just to unload the money I have in them, but thats life sometimes
 
I sold systems for around 3 years where I bought the parts and sold them. It was hell. Made little profit and clients were calling me like I was their personal IT guy.

It's a lot better to just build the systems.

This is what I do now. I use local advertisement and people call me. They want a PC. I send them an invoice of a PC and I call them explaining everything. They say yes they order the parts. When they receive the part I send someone to get them or they get them to me whatever they prefer. I build the system and I send someone to the client house for delivery.

So my cost is nothing except the person I pay to deliver the systems when I can't.

My profit is whatever I charge for building the system. Like that you don't have to take care of anything except building them.
 
Jan 2, 2021
95
5
35
0
I sold systems for around 3 years where I bought the parts and sold them. It was hell. Made little profit and clients were calling me like I was their personal IT guy.

It's a lot better to just build the systems.

This is what I do now. I use local advertisement and people call me. They want a PC. I send them an invoice of a PC and I call them explaining everything. They say yes they order the parts. When they receive the part I send someone to get them or they get them to me whatever they prefer. I build the system and I send someone to the client house for delivery.

So my cost is nothing except the person I pay to deliver the systems when I can't.

My profit is whatever I charge for building the system. Like that you don't have to take care of anything except building them.
I really like this idea. What do you normally charge?
 
Reactions: Master Djoza

Karadjgne

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Cpu power is next to meaningless. You could sell 4th gen Intel as a gaming pc if you can get but 1 important component. Everything resides with the gpu. For 1080p, that's a 1660 Super/Rx580 or better, for 1440p a 2070 Super/5700 or better. 4k is a 2080ti or 3070 / 5800xt or better.

A simple trip showing eBay pricing on Used gpus will sell anything reasonable. You can stick an $800 price tag on a 4790k with 16gb of 2400 if it's got a 1660S/ti.

So cpu tray aside, can you get the gpus that no one else can at a price allowing for profit?

Because with a tray full of 10100F cpus, you'll need gpus for certain.
 
Jan 2, 2021
95
5
35
0
Cpu power is next to meaningless. You could sell 4th gen Intel as a gaming pc if you can get but 1 important component. Everything resides with the gpu. For 1080p, that's a 1660 Super/Rx580 or better, for 1440p a 2070 Super/5700 or better. 4k is a 2080ti or 3070 / 5800xt or better.
For GPUs, what budget GPUs are most reasonable for a build? Also, so far I am leaning most towards @Nemesia 's idea, but I also would like to hear other suggestions.
 

Karadjgne

Titan
Ambassador
Depends on just who you are selling to. If it's teenagers wanting to game, you need something serious, or they'll laugh and walk away. If it's grandma websurfing, you could get away with anything from a gt720 on up.

Grandmas don't want flashy lighting unless they are buying for grandkids, parents don't mind flashy lights as long as it's good enough for their kids school work, some even prefer a downgraded gpu just to prevent game usage temptation.

The type of clientele will tell you exactly what needs to be in the pc.

If I was to get back into that business, I'd do both. Basic systems, some prebuilts, barebones etc and have the custom option for ppl who want more than what you have in hand.

But the pc's need to be above average in build, no sloppy crap. It's your name on it. Even the cheapest pos you sell must look show-worthy. Include instructions for maintenence and windows registration, pre-load freeware like ccleaner, Coretemp and malwarebytes etc.

Word of mouth sells more pc's than Craigslist.

And give a warranty. 1 year on the build, not on the parts or software. If it breaks, you fix for free and they pay for parts only or rma from manufacturer/vendor, if they break it they pay for it. Just be reasonable on price.

You make me happy, I tell my wife. You make her happy she tells everyone on her Facebook/hip-town pages.

Oh, and get hooked up with some very easy to use web cams/mics. There's a lot of ppl at home and grandparents especially will be sold on the chance to talk to their kids/grandkids for free by internet without having to try and crowd in on a cellphone.
 

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