PC Parts Upgrade Guide Upgrading your personal computer can be incredibly rewarding. Finally launching a quality game on a platform that belongs only to you, is truly an extraordinary feeling. Upgrading your PC in a reasonable and affordable way is now closer than ever. Both large companies and independent developers make PC parts for all budgets. But which parts do you really need to upgrade, and how do you know when you should?
Any major upgrade to a PC should come with extra precautions when it comes to cooling. Fear not: no matter how hot your PC produces, it won’t catch fire. Most modern PC components have mechanisms that monitor temperature and cut power or reduce performance if they approach dangerous heat. The downside of this protection system is that your custom PC’s performance will automatically decrease if it gets too hot, which means your upgrades may cancel themselves! Additional cooling can take many forms. Fans are by far the most popular, but some companies have built unique water cooling systems.
If you work in the field of 3D graphic design or play games that demand high performance, you need to upgrade your graphics card. Your graphics processor, or GPU, is the part of your computer that controls how much detail can be displayed on your screen and how many frames per second your computer can handle without freezing or crashing.
If you want to play recently released games, you should test them before spending your money on a new GPU. Try running the game at 30 FPS and low graphics settings. Slowly increase the FPS and graphics settings until you get to a point where your computer starts to slow down. Now step back slightly. Would you be ready to play a game with the settings you get after this test? If not, upgrade your GPU. Check that your computer is powerful enough to run another card. You will need an additional 100 to 300 watts of power reserve. If you’re not sure what power your PC produces and uses, Google your exact model. Most modern high-performance desktop computers come with PCI Express 3.0 slots, which allow you to easily replace your GPU with a better third-party model. Here’s a handy guide to the types of graphics cards available.
Your CPU, or processor, is essentially the brain of your computer. It allows all the separate elements of your system to communicate with each other. Modern computers are usually equipped with very high-performance processors, but if you run applications or games in which many AI units develop simultaneously, you may need an upgrade. To find out if you need a new processor, download an app called HWmonitor. It allows you to monitor the performance of your CPU while running games. If your processor is showing on HWmonitor that it is running near 100%, you need to upgrade.