I'm in the process of upgrading my antique PC from six years ago. Progress is slow but I've started to dismantle parts for replacement. It's at this time that I'm forced to reassess the way I've approached cable management — something that is easily neglected — inside my PC. Armed with more insight than my inexperienced past self, here are some tips you may find useful in keeping your PC cables neat and tidy.
Inside PC image from Shutterstock
Cable management isn't the most glamourous or exciting part of building a PC and it's tempting to just connect everything up without caring how the wires are arranged. While it won't give you a performance boost or help keep the magic smoke in, keeping the cables inside the PC is orderly can save a lot of pain in the long run.
There are some very good cases out there that do accommodate for tidy cable management but if you're scrounging for parts, extremely attached to your existing case or you're desperately trying to cut costs, you don't have to fork out the extra money to buy one.
It's a good idea to invest in a modular power supply which gives you cables that aren't permanently attached to the main unit. This means you can just plug in and use the cables you need. You can add cables on as you install more parts into your PC, such as a second hard drive or graphics card.
One thing to keep in mind is the order you plug things in. For example, if you're working with a power supply that needs to be plugged into multiple parts, decide which cable to attach first that won't make it more difficult for you to plug the rest of the wires in. You should run your hand along each cable as well and hide them behind the motherboard tray whenever possible.
You can use cable ties to bundle everything together but bear in mind that when you have to cut them you'll have to do it very carefully otherwise you'll risk damaging the wires. Ideally, you would use double-sided Velcro, which you can find at most hardware or electronics stores, to keep everything in place.
If you can, use braided cables as they're more durable and they don't tangle as easily compared to ones with plastic sheaths. They don't look half bad either.
Do you have any good cable management tips that we've missed? Let us know in the comments.