There's no cost attached to a firmware update, the initiation software in an electronic device's ROM (Read Only Memory), which makes upgrading the software of dated equipment more cost-effective than purchasing the latest model. "Flashing," or installing, new firmware into your device's ROM isn't usually lightning fast. It's best to understand the basics of the process to avoid zapping your equipment into a state of disrepair.
Windows 8 helps users determine how well their computer performs using a system of scoring called the Windows Experience Index. There are individual subscores for processor, memory, graphics, gaming graphics and hard disk capability. A base score is the lowest subscore calculated. These measurements examine each of your hardware components ranking them on a scale from 1.0 to 9.9. Improving these scores requires a basic understanding of individual hardware specifications.
Your computer’s graphics card is an important component of the overall package. It interprets data sent from your central processing unit and turns that data into a visual display. Everything you see on your screen is the result of video card calculations. If you work in high-end visual software or are a fan of playing PC games, it is important to understand how video cards affect your render times.
Nanotechnology involves manipulating materials on an atomic scale. This technology has incredible potential -- for example, bandages laced with silver nanoparticles have been found to make cuts heal faster. While much of this technology is still in testing stages, many electronics manufacturers are already using nanotechnology to make your life and their products better.
The act of overclocking a computer's processor can help you to make more efficient use of aging hardware without the need to upgrade, but comes with some risks. Unless you are careful and know what you are doing, you can end up with faulty or damaged components. If done correctly, overclocking your system can yield better performance in demanding applications such as games as well as image-editing software. It is not necessarily a free solution, as you might have to spend money on aftermarket cooling to keep the overclocked system stable.
ATI's CrossFire technology lets you link two graphics cards together for better performance. The idea is similar to a dual-core processor, where using two separate graphics processors offers similar performance to using one processor with twice the speed, but at a lower cost. Before you can link two cards with CrossFire, you need to install them. To do this, you need a motherboard with two PCI-Express slots and with support for CrossFire technology. Your computer also needs to have enough physical space in its case to accommodate two cards and an adequately sized power supply.
A static electricity discharge is an agent of death for many delicate computer components, and a simple tiny shock can destroy an expensive piece of equipment. Staying grounded removes the possibility of delivering one of these computer-killing death blows, but you don't need a special wrist strap to stay safe.
A slow computer is the death of strong productivity. Aside from software concerns such as memory-intensive programs (such as those used in graphic design) and malware (such as viruses and worms), there are multiple components that can slow a computer's performance. Although you could upgrade all of these components (or buy a new computer), it's more reasonable and affordable to upgrade the components that have the biggest impact on performance. The most important component to upgrade is partially dictated by the type of work you find yourself doing most often.
Standard PCs don't run hot enough to require liquid cooling, as CPUs shut down before they overheat. Unless you decide to overclock your PC, you will probably not need liquid cooling, unless you are doing it purely for aesthetic reasons. However, in an open office setting with a whole lot of computers, things can heat up quite a bit. Internal fans will extract hot air from the PCs and blow it straight into the room, causing the ambient temperature to rise. With liquid cooling, you won't have this problem.
When upgrading your computer, you might have to make a lot of decisions along the way: Mac or PC? Laptop or desktop? Budget or performance? But one decision you can easily put off until after you've completed your purchase is this: What to do with your old computer? It turns out that computers, not unlike a carpenters hammer, has multiple uses well beyond its original purpose. You can do a lot with an old computer, even if it's no longer in working order. From finding a use for it around the house, to selling or even recycling it, there's sure…
Apple TV was designed to playback Apple and Apple-affiliated media, such as that originating from iTunes, Netflix and YouTube. Apple TV however, is capable of streaming and playing a wide array of media, including HD video. Broadcom offers the CrystalHD graphics-accelerator card, which expands the device’s out-of-the-box capabilities, allowing it to support resolutions up to 1920 pixels by 1088 pixels.
Thermal pads are boundaries between sensitive computer chips and heat sinks, used to draw heat away from those chips. Heat sinks are metal blocks with fins or other protrusions, made of copper or aluminum. Do-it-yourself thermal pads are commonly made from thermal paste, properly applied to fill the small gaps between the components. These gaps are formed from small machining imperfections or minute differences in flatness that can result when the two pieces are set together. Making an effective pad requires using the right application tool the right amount of paste, and a steady hand. Novices may want to practice…
Because motherboards are specific to certain central processing units, or CPUs, you can only perform limited upgrades to existing computers such as the Dell Dimension 2350. To upgrade the processor and other peripheral devices, you need to replace the motherboard in the Dimension 2350. This can be done with an ATX motherboard of the correct, fitting, form factor. You must pay careful attention to the power requirements of the new motherboard and adapt the case-connector wires on the Dimension 2350 case.
You may occasionally encounter the terms "Pixel Shader 2.0" and "Shader Model 2.0" when shopping for computer games. Shader Model is a part of Microsoft's DirectX application programming interface; a video card that supports DirectX 9.0 supports Shader Model 2.0. The ATI Radeon 9250 supports DirectX 8.1 and Shader Model 1.4. It doesn't support Shader Model 2.0.
The Lenovo T500 laptop features a built-in webcam, two GB of RAM and a DVD-burning drive. The machine also includes an ATI Mobility Radeon 3650 graphics card. You can overclock your T500 through the basic input/output system or BIOS. Users should note, however, that overclocking can shorten the lifespan of your T500's internal components.
As computer processors have increased in speed, they have required more elaborate and noisy cooling solutions to keep them within acceptable temperatures. If computer noise bothers you or you intend to build a computer in a small chassis with little room for cooling, it can be helpful to know which processors generate the most heat. Thermal Design Power can help you determine this.
The Diamond Multimedia Viper Radeon X1950 AGP is a video card based on a reference design by AMD ATI. The card may have 256 or 512MB of onboard memory and is compatible with Microsoft DirectX 9. Several problems can occur with this video card, due either to incorrect installation or extended use. Studying the symptoms of the problem can help you find the solution.
You can quickly add Blu-ray disc playback capability to your desktop computer. The process of installing a Blu-ray ROM drive and connecting or "marrying" it to a PC's motherboard is not a difficult one. Many BD-ROM drives are "combo" models, offering you the convenience of burning DVDs and playing back Blu-ray discs on the same drive. If you opt for a BD-R drive -- a Blu-ray writer -- the installation process is the same as with a BD-ROM drive.
The EVGA GeForce 8800GT Superclocked Edition is a video card "overclocked" at the factory to run at higher-than-normal clock speeds for increased performance. Although it may be possible to overclock a standard 8800GT to run at the same speed, no two video cards are exactly the same, and a successful overclock is never guaranteed. Although the 8800GT Superclocked Edition may cost slightly more than a standard 8800GT, it offers superior performance.
In general, more powerful computer processors, also known as CPUs, use more energy to operate. An increase in power isn't always directly correlated with increased consumption, however. Processor manufacturers use a variety of techniques to increase efficiency and reduce power consumption. The energy requirements for a bigger, more powerful CPU vary based on who built it and which processor generation it belongs to.
The AMD ATI Radeon HD 5670 is a 3-D video card that operates in a PCI Express expansion card slot and supports the Microsoft DirectX 11 graphics standard. If you are considering upgrading an older computer with this video card, you may need to upgrade your computer's power supply as well to meet its power requirements.
The Sapphire HD 4850 is a video card based on the AMD RV770 PRO reference design. If your computer currently has an older video card, the HD 4850 may improve the visual quality of games and other 3-D applications. Before purchasing it, confirm that your computer meets the requirements for compatibility.
Gamers demand better graphics in each new generation of games, and hardware manufacturers work to keep up. A group of manufacturers introduced the Peripheral Component Interconnect Express standard for video card slots in 2004. This video card slot had a significant speed advantage over the older Accelerated Graphics Port slot, and PCI Express quickly became more popular than AGP. The two slot types are not directly compatible, but a product allows some AGP cards to work in PCI Express slots.
The random-access memory, or RAM, in your computer acts as a kind of scratch pad for your computer. The more space your computer has for running programs, the faster it will run, since the computer doesn’t have to waste time clearing memory to load more programs. Increasing the RAM in your computer is an economical way to extend its life, although sometimes RAM can be bad or fail. Correct problems with added RAM with basic troubleshooting and testing.
Many people are fearful of poking around too much in the internals of a computer, thinking that they might break something. But for those computer owners willing and able to venture in, it is entirely possible to make upgrades and fixes yourself. Reballing, or resoldering, a faulty chip, such as the South Bridge IC, for instance, can be done with common equipment that some people have around the house, and can significantly improve a faulty chip connection if done right.
Your computer's GPU, or graphics processing unit, is responsible for rendering all of the images that you see on your display. A more powerful GPU can improve Windows' visuals, speed up 3-D animation and allow you to play cutting-edge video games. Nearly all desktop computers allow you to replace their internal GPU.
The PVR-150 from Hauppauge is a high-definition, digital/analog video and audio tuner designed for installation in a PC. It is a complex product that requires precise configuration to work correctly, lest you encounter poor image quality, jerky playback, blurry visuals or limited television reception. Most of these issues can easily be resolved by merely adjusting some settings. Keep in mind that, in a worst case scenario, you may need to send in your unit for service.
If you have noticed that your PC is running slower than it did when you first purchased it, that may be your computer telling you that it is time for a memory upgrade. Adding Random Access Memory (RAM) cards to a computer is the best way to speed up a slow machine. Since computers tend to become obsolete rather quickly, adding memory is also a smart strategy for extending the life and usefulness of an older model PC. It usually takes no more than a few minutes to upgrade a memory card, however, some may need several attempts before installing…
Vertex shading is a technique used by game designers and graphics card engineers to help smooth out the seams between the triangles that make up many 3D objects. The result is an object that looks smooth and realistic rather than blocky. The Radeon 9250 graphics card supports vertex shading, but there is generally no option to adjust the setting. By using a tweaking program with your graphics card, you can adjust the setting for better performance.
Tuner cards made by AVerMedia allow you to watch and record television and other video signals on your computer. These cards are generally installed in a PCI or PCIe slot. Sometimes, the card may overheat and malfunction, requiring a cooling solution. There are slot-cooling fans available from many different manufacturers that can help move heat away from the card and out of the computer case, and the fans are easy to install in a very short amount of time.
The Corsair H50 is a self-contained, liquid CPU cooling system. The system consists of a water-block-and-pump assembly and a 120 mm fan-and-radiator assembly. The two assemblies are connected to each other with permanently sealed hoses. The Antec 1200 is a gaming computer case with a 200 mm top fan, three 120 mm front fans, and two 120 mm rear fans. The Corsair H50 is easily installed in place of one of the rear 120 mm fans.
A Steampunk computer is one that has been modified to resemble something out of the Victorian Age, roughly 1880 to 1910. Typically, this involves adding a lot of brass to your computer’s casing, but you may also use wood or any other material that was available during the Age of Steam. You can opt to just paint your computer’s casing, or go all out and encase the monitor, mouse and keyboard so that no plastic shows. Typically, you won’t need to touch the inside of your computer.
Nvidia GeForce 8600 GT video cards landed in many a computer after the card's release in April 2007. A tally by the website GPU Review shows manufacturing partners of Nvidia produced 235 retail versions of the card. The 8600 GT had plenty of competition from rival ATI, including comparable cards that reached the market within nine months of the Nvidia entry. They include the Radeon HD 3650, Radeon 2600 XT and Radeon X1950 XTX. All remain available from online retailers as of 2011.
The graphics processing unit (GPU) is a piece of laptop hardware that handles visual effects for everything from basic two-dimensional images to complex gaming details. Unlike a graphics card--which is separate--the GPU is built into your laptop's motherboard, essentially sharing its processing power, rather than working as a separate entity. While compact, a GPU is significantly limited in terms of performance, especially with games and video editing. However, there are some measures you can take to improve your GPU.
Wiring from a PC leading to external audio devices comes in one of two forms: copper and optical. Copper wiring comes in the form of RCA, HDMI or digital coaxial. All of these are subject to ground loops, hum and other sources of interference. Optical cabling uses a glass or plastic fiber to pass the digital signal via a light beam, naturally immune to external electromagnetic and radio frequency emissions.
Many new printers designed for home users feature network connectivity so that multiple users can connect and print to the printer simultaneously. More expensive printers have traditionally had network connectivity through wired Ethernet, as well. These types of printers are designed to connect to an Ethernet switch so that everyone can access them. However, if you have a network printer but do not have a network installed, you can add a NIC to your PC so that you can use the printer.
A personal video recorder, or PVR, is an internal card or external accessory for a computer that can receive television input, record it and display it on the screen. The cards generally come with software for scheduling recordings and viewing them. One of the benefits of a PVR is that you can pause live television or previous recordings, and go back to a previous moment. This allows you to create an instant replay of what you just saw, such as an important play in a sporting event.
AMD released the ATI Radeon 4650 in 2008, and the desktop video card proved to be popular, with dozens of retail versions produced by AMD's manufacturing partners. The Nvidia GeForce GT 230 appeared in 2009 on systems from PC makers such as Hewlett-Packard and Gateway. The GT 230's standout feature: a hefty 1.5GB of video memory. The Radeon 4650, unlike most modern video cards, is offered in the older AGP format as well as PCI-Express 2.0, the current standard.
Double Data Rate Random Access Memory (DDR RAM) is the industry standard for computer memory. There are different versions of DDR. Each new version of memory increases the random-access speed and performance. Generally speaking, the higher the DDR version, the faster the memory. For example, DDR3 is faster than DDR2. If you want to upgrade your Graphics Processing Unit from DDR2 to DDR3 memory, you must purchase a graphics card that has DDR3 memory.
AMD released the ATI Radeon 4770 computer video card in 2009 and introduced the ATI Radeon 5670 about nine months later, in early 2010. The company aimed both products at game enthusiasts who wanted a capable video card for around $100 -- perhaps the most competitive price point in the video card market. Both cards can easily meet everyday needs, but when put to the test on games by computer hardware reviewers, the 4770 proved the distinctly better performer.
ATI Overdrive is a technology used with ATI Video cards to overclock and adjust performance speeds. The setting, which is part of ATI's Catalyst Control Center, enables users to tune settings such as clock and fan speeds. As Overdrive pushes the limits of video cards, it can cause issues if used improperly. The option can be disabled in the Catalyst Control Center.
The Windows operating system rates your computer's hardware on a scale of 1.0 to 7.9, with 7.9 being the highest. Windows displays an overall index score and a subscore for each hardware type, such as memory, computer processor, hard drive and graphics card. If your computer has a low subscore in a certain area, you can upgrade your computer hardware to get a better subscore. This requires knowledge of installing hardware, such as RAM and motherboard cards.
The 7900GS and 7600GS are mid-range graphics cards developed by Nvidia. Both products are part of the company's GeForce 7 line of desktop computer graphics cards. Although the 7900GS and 7600GS are part of the same product family and designed for similar applications, they differ in terms of GPU types, clock speeds and processing rates. The 7900GS is a more advanced product overall.
The Intel "iCore" processors were released in 2010. There are three versions of this processor: the i3 dual-core, i5 quad-core, and the i7 quad-core with hyper-threading. Hyper-threading provides four virtual cores, so the computer sees eight cores. The first generation of these processors uses Socket 1366 and 1156 motherboards, and is not interchangeable. The second generation Sandy-Bridge processors use the Socket 1155 motherboard and are not interchangeable. You can get a significant performance boost by replacing your i5 with an i7 processor, and do it in less than an hour.
Video card developer Nvidia released the GeForce GT 240 512MB in late 2009. Nvidia's GeForce 8800 GTS 512MB card appeared about two years earlier as part of the company's 8800 line. Both PCI-E 2.0 video cards performed well in testing by professional technology reviewers, but a close look shows that the 8800 GTS, despite its age, packs a little more punch than the GT 240.
The GeForce 8400GS and ATi Radeon X850 are computer graphics cards developed by Nvidia and AMD respectively. Both the 8400GS and X850 are discrete computer cards marketed upon release as mid- to high-end products for desktop computers. Though the two cards have similar target markets, they differ significantly in terms of their specifications.
If you are disassembling your computer to upgrade or repair any of its internal components, you could damage a processor or stick of RAM. Your body's static electricity produces an exchange of electrons between yourself and the computer component you're touching. When this occurs, one becomes electrically negative and the other electrically positive. The voltage produced by this exchange is enough to deem your system inoperable. Prevent this with an anti-static wrist band, a cable that clears your computer from the voltage originating from the positive and negative exchange.
With the vast range of USB devices available, many computer users come to a point where they do not have enough free USB ports. The designers of the Universal Serial Bus provided for expansion, and a low-cost USB hub can add the extra USB ports required to accommodate all of your USB peripherals.
Adding a graphics processing unit (GPU) to a laptop can step up its performance. But it was thought to be a nearly impossible task, considering the relative lack of space in a laptop chassis and manufacturers' use of custom-fitted GPU cards that cannot be easily replaced. Many laptops simply forgo using GPU cards in favor of onboard solutions that offer no option for internal replacement. However, external GPU solutions are available.
A toolbar is a good way to quickly access programs, games and websites that you frequently use while online. There are Zynga toolbars, for popular online games such as Farmville, and search engine toolbars for sites like Google and Yahoo. These toolbars allow you to access the features of the site without having to type anything in the URL box. The header is what appears on your browser window once the toolbar is installed and it contains all the functions of the toolbar.
If your PC's Nvidia GeForce 7300 GS video card no longer gets the job done, you'll find a wide range of replacement cards available. The 7300 GS, released in 2006, uses the PCI Express motherboard interface. That's good news if you have upgrade aspirations, since PCI-E is still the standard for PCs as of 2011, though it's been tweaked and refined over the years. The motherboard slot that holds your old card will readily accommodate a better one.
The Dell OptiPlex GX260 is a desktop computer suitable for use in a home or business environment. The device comes in four different sizes, the smallest of which is the aptly-named "small form factor" model. Despite its compact shape, this model is capable of supporting an internal wireless card, provided that the card is similarly small in size.
The GTX 470 and HD 5850 are graphics cards developed by Nvidia and AMD respectively. Both are discrete cards intended at the time of their release for mid- to high-end graphics processing. Though the processors have similar applications, they differ in terms of overall architecture and technical specifications.
Modding your computer case will give it a unique look that you can show off to friends or at your next LAN party. Adding a CCFL light bar to the inside of your case will add a colorful glow to the case's interior. If your case has a clear side panel, it is an interesting way to show off the computer's internals and any other modifications you have made. Installing the light bar is a fairly simple process as long as you have an open Molex connector.
The Acer Z5600 is an all-in-one desktop computer with the monitor built into the housing. The Z5600 supports up to 8 gigabytes of DDR2 SDRAM, with dual-channel support when you install four RAM modules. Since RAM upgrades are one of the most common computer upgrades, Acer made it easy to access the memory compartment. The initial amount of memory varies depending on the configuration, but you can upgrade the RAM yourself without using any special tools.
EVGA's e-GeForce 7300 LE card is a 256MB DDR2 video card made for a desktop computer's PCI Express x16 slot. PCI Express is a standard slot included in most computers manufactured since 2006. If you are not sure whether your computer's motherboard has a PCI Express slot, please check with the manufacturer. You will need to open your computer up to install the card, so you may need a screwdriver depending on how your computer is sealed.
Different components on a computer's motherboard operate at different voltages. A MOSFET is a device that converts voltages; as with any other motherboard chips and components, these devices generate heat while operating. Some motherboards use heat sinks to cool the MOSFET. You can choose to remove these heat sinks in favor of a water cooling system, however. Water-cooled computers pump water from a reservoir to water blocks installed on top of chips or devices. Installing the water blocks is one step of water cooling, but you must also connect the blocks via tubes to the reservoir and pump.
CPU heat sinks keep the processor inside your computer running cool and stable. Better coolers allow for quieter performance, while maintaining stability under pressure. Users who specialize in overclocking prefer high-performing heat sinks, as they allow the CPU to be pushed beyond the normal limits of the shipped product. To ensure proper performance of the heat sink, thermal paste is applied between it and the CPU. This fills any air gaps and ensures proper heat transfer between the CPU and the heat sink, allowing for optimal CPU cooling.
The life and usefulness of a computer can be increased through upgrades. Taking a cheaper or older system and installing new and more powerful parts can get expensive and difficult at times. A cheap and easy way to boost a computer's performance without even having to open the case is Microsoft's ReadyBoost, using ReadyBoost-enabled drives.
If you spend much of your time working at the computer, you may welcome any opportunity for distractions to help pass the time. Television is an excellent distraction, but if your computer is not in the same room as your TV, you may think that watching television while you work at the computer is impossible. However, there are several ways of watching TV on your computer, from installing a TV tuner device to using one of many free online streaming services.
Computers are one on the most rapidly evolving consumer technologies. A top-of-the-line PC purchased today quickly becomes outdated and obsolete within only a few months. So what do you do with your old PC? You could dump it in the trash, but that is dangerous because it releases harmful chemicals into landfills and destroys the environment. Instead, you could take a little extra time out of your day to dispose of your PC the right way, thus making the earth a better place to live.
Swapping out a desktop computer's motherboard and processor is one of the easiest ways to improve its performance while extending its longevity. However, this process can seem rather intimidating to a novice. Don't worry; computer components are designed to be user friendly, which makes a task such as replacing the motherboard and processor relatively quick and trouble-free. A proper removal and installation of the motherboard and processor can take about one hour, depending on the skill and experience of the user.
There are a number of drives included in Western Digital's Scorpio line, available in a range of storage sizes. These drives can be easily installed in Mac Pro computers, but the process is somewhat different depending on whether you are installing the drive as an addition to the primary drive or replacing a primary drive that may have failed. If replacing the primary drive, you will need to have your OS X disc ready.
A computer's memory has a direct impact on its overall performance. The two main aspects of memory impacting performance are quantity and speed. While speed holds the most weight, computers with insufficient amounts of hard drive, system or video memory will run memory-intensive applications slowly.
Paper often comes to mind when the subject being discussed is recycling. However, computers are another item discarded on a regular basis that should be recycled. Sometimes companies throw computers out because the computers are damaged or not functioning correctly. Other times, companies will have them trashed to make room for newer computers. Many fail to recycle computers because they don't know how to go about doing it.
The Balanced Technology Extended (BTX) motherboard is a computer motherboard design introduced by Intel in 2004 in order to combat the issues that ATX motherboards had at the time. The most important issue was that the processors kept raising the operating temperature, making cooling a very important part of motherboards. The BTX was designed to allow for better airflow inside computer cases. This would eventually lead to lower operating temperatures of the components
The Hyper N520 cooling system from Cooler Master is a high-efficiency, powerful CPU cooler and fan assembly that is ideal for advanced CPUs such as the Intel Core i7. It is compatible with a wide range of Intel and AMD CPUs, as it includes separate mounting brackets for each of the two manufacturers' CPU sockets. This cooling system features a dual fan and a mirror-finished copper base to ensure the highest level of cooling as well as the closest possible contact between the cooler and the socket. You can install it yourself using simple tools.
Your desktop computer may be good enough for browsing the Internet, but most contemporary computer games have high system requirements that are beyond your typical computer configuration. The most common upgrades for turning a regular PC into a gaming machine are video card, RAM and processor upgrades.You may also need to swap out the computer's power supply unit for a more powerful model, as high end graphics cards require a great deal of power to run properly.
Computer components generate heat that can build quickly in the closed confines of their case. Adding fans is a common method of cooling the interior of a computer. Cooler Master is a well-known hardware manufacturer that produces fans and other cooling devices. Cooler Master fans install the same way as most typical computer case fans. Though fans vary in size and appearance, they all serve the same function and install in very similar ways.
The Hyper 212 Plus from Cooler Master replaces the Hyper 212 as an aftermarket CPU cooler. Overclockers and other serious computer users often use aftermarket CPU coolers to keep their processors at viable temperatures under rigorous operating conditions. Overheated CPUs can cause system instability or, in some cases, permanent damage to the processor. Cooler Master is a well-known brand in aftermarket CPU cooling with options for multiple CPUs and motherboard configurations. Many users choose to add CPU coolers while they are in the process of building their computer systems because they often need to be installed on the mainboard before…
The Dell Drivers and Downloads website is one of the best support sites of any computer manufacturer. The Dell Drivers and Support site has wizards to assist you in determining what drivers to download for your Dell computer. Quickly find your drivers on the Dell Drivers and Downloads site by first locating your "Service Tag Number" on the case of your desktop computer, or on the bottom of your laptop. Use the Service Tag Number wizard on the Dell support site to find all software available for your machine. However, if you cannot find your Service Tag Number, the Dell…
In the first quarter of 2010, Intel introduced a new family of processors called the Core i series. The Core i series uses the LGA 1366, LGA 1155 and LGA 1156 sockets. Even though the sockets are not compatible with older processors, multiple processors from the Core i family can share a common socket. This allows upgrading from an entry-level dual-core i3 processor to a quad-core i7 processor using the same socket by simply swapping the processors.
PC computers can be hand-assembled by enthusiasts using prefabricated parts, such as hard drives and computer motherboards. Doing so means you can upgrade various components. For example, you can install a new processor (aka "central processing unit") with a higher speed rating (aka "GHz") into a computer after removing the old processor. The supplies you need are typically found around the home. The processor can be acquired from an electronics store or a hobby shop that carries computer parts.
Few people would say no to the prospect of having a faster computer, but opening a computer and installing a new component may be a daunting proposition for someone who has never done so before. If you have decided to upgrade your computer by installing a new component, it is wise to know the potential pitfalls before beginning. Before upgrading your computer, learn about the problems that can occur and how you can prevent them.
While many entry-level desktop computers rely on integrated graphics systems, dedicated PCI video cards can significantly improve processing performance. If you want to install a dedicated PCI video card into your eMachines eTower 566I2, you simply need some basic knowledge of your computer's internal components.
The Dell Inspiron 530S is a roomy desktop tower with a dual core processor and 3GB of RAM. It can handle most applications easily and comes with an ATI Radeon HD3650 PCI video card, meaning the video card is not integrated to the motherboard and is easily replaceable. The video card is a device you want to replace when you either need more graphic power for gaming and video applications.
Upgrading your desktop computer can breathe new life into outdated hardware. There are several basic types of hardware and software upgrades that can have a profound impact on the performance of any desktop computer. Each type of upgrade has specific performance characteristics that impact how it will affect your system. Business computers rarely require an upgraded video card but a gaming computer would. Other types of upgrades including hard drive, processor and RAM upgrades will boost the performance of most computers.
The demands of computer software only rise with time, and if you have an older machine, you may no longer be as happy with its performance as you once were. It is time for an upgrade. However, the process of upgrading a computer can be daunting for those who do not do so regularly. Research and preparation are necessary for ensuring that the computer upgrade will proceed smoothly.
The Dell Dimension 2300 is a desktop computer that comes equipped with a 1.8 GHz Pentium 4 processor, Intel integrated AGP graphics and four PCI connectors. The 2300 also includes two memory module connectors, designed for use with PC133 SDRAM memory modules. Each connector supports a maximum memory size of 512MB, allowing for a total maximum memory of 1GB. Alternatively, the computer will function with a minimum of one 128MB module installed.
The MSM7627 processor on your computer runs at a certain amount of data transfer. If you are experiencing slow processing speeds on your system, you can overclock the processor for faster processing. Overclocking the processor increases the speed that the processor takes in data. The MSM7627 can be overclocked by at least 10 to 15 percent. You don't have to be a computer genius to overclock your MSM7627 processor. You can do it yourself with little hassle.
When you press the power button on your Compaq Presario 2100 computer, you expect to see the familiar log-on screen. Sometimes, however, all you see is a black screen, with no green light indicating that the computer is starting up. When that happens, the most likely culprit is a bad power supply. You can save money and get your Presario 2100 back in service quickly by replacing that power supply on your own.
Computers, like automobiles, are built to specific tasks and functions. Just like you don't take a Honda Civic for the Daytona 500, you don't use a bare-bones desktop machine or a notebook computer like the Eee PC for high-end gaming. Gaming computers demand the cutting edge in performance, and what specifications make a good gaming computer will change rapidly as parts vendors introduce new products. The recommendations in this article are valid as of the time of publication, and are probably acceptable through fall 2011.
Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) has long been one of two major companies that manufacture computer processors. With each year, AMD brings many innovations and new features to a full range of processors, designed to meet a wide range of users' needs, which range from performance to cost-effectiveness and everything between. One of those processors in the AMD lineup is the Athlon 64 5000.
If your games aren't handling well on your PC, it's time to start tweaking the hardware. Many serious gamers choose to customize their computers, transforming a bland out-of-the-box word processor into a sleek, lightning-fast gaming machine. Finding the right hardware for your computer will require you to find a good balance between high quality equipment and the limits of your budget. Though finding the upgrades that suit your needs will take some time and research, creating a customized computer can actually be a lot of fun.
As video cards got more and more powerful, they also got larger and larger. In the old days you could buy a video card and put it in your computer, with the only considerations being how much you wanted to pay and what performance level you wanted. With today's video cards, you must also consider the physical size of the card because some cards are too large to fit in many computer cases. The ATI Radeon HD 4850 is a moderately sized performance-level card.
One of the seemingly complicated steps in the somewhat complicated process of building a computer is wiring the front panel audio to the motherboard. Nearly every computer case comes with front panel audio connections, usually a microphone and headphone jack, both of which are connected to the motherboard through a single, wired connection. Get yourself one step closer to finishing your new computer by wiring the front panel audio to the motherboard.
The speed and performance of microprocessors are primarily based on its operating frequency, bus speed, data caches and processor cores. Each of these parts impacts the performance and overall speed in a specific way. The fastest microprocessors use a combination of fast speeds, large data caches and multiple processing cores to rapidly process large quantities of data from multiple programs.
The motherboard on your computer is the large circuit board that helps control various parts of the system. Some chips on the motherboard help control the data that goes to and from the hard drives, while others control expansion cards that can be added to motherboards. The motherboard also holds the central processing unit (CPU) and memory chips. Operating systems, such as those from Microsoft and Apple, contain "plug and play" software, which helps the computer identify any new components, including motherboards, that are installed onto the machine. This makes it possible to add a new motherboard without formatting the…
Graphics performance can be an important aspect of computing, and this is especially the case for gamers, who want to ensure they get the best graphics performance possible from their machine. If you feel that the graphics performance of your eMachines 1831-05 computer is not as robust as you would like, it may be time to upgrade the video card. Your machine has an available PCI Express slot for an upgraded graphics card and it supports up to 16x speed cards.
Netbooks use similar software to laptops and desktop computers to communicate with and utilize attached printers. Most netbooks do not have CD-ROM, drives while almost all printers come with driver software ready to install from CD-ROMs. The challenge when you are installing a new printer for use with a netbook is getting the printer driver and packaged software onto your computer. Once your software is installed and the printer is initialized, you will be able to use the printer as you would from any desktop computer.
The eMachines W2260 desktop computer is an AMD-based system with a Socket A Athlon XP 2200+ CPU that runs at an actual clock speed of 1800 MHz. It has 256 MB of DDR RAM that runs at 266 MHz on a 133 MHz front-side bus. The Athlon XP 2200+ CPU can be upgraded with any Socket A Athlon XP CPU that has a higher clock multiplier than 13.5. The fastest Socket A CPU that will work in the W2260 is The "Thoroughbred" core 2600+, which has a multiplier of 16.
Many PC users enjoy using their computers for gaming purposes. Some graphically intensive PC games will demand more of a user's system than others, and if the hardware is not powerful enough to run the game smoothly, the user may experience frame-rate loss and choppiness during game-play. The two best ways to improve system performance and increase overall frame-rate in PC games is to either upgrade the computer's video card or overclock the video card using 3rd party overclocking software.
High-speed Internet allows you to use a network connection with greater efficiency, moving large files in minutes rather than the hours required at dial-up speeds. It also allows you to multitask while online, accessing multiple network locations at once, or extending your use beyond text and data into multimedia applications such as teleconferencing or streaming video. Whatever your reason for making the switch, the switch itself is quick to setup once you've wired your residence for the connection. Much of the setup is of the plug and play variety, with only a few cords to hook-up, and then a short…
The Pentium D 820 is an early-generation, dual-core Intel CPU used by HP as part of their mid-range lineup of desktop computers. The 820 delivered good performance and featured 2MB of L2 cache and a relatively high clock speed of 2.8 Ghz. This performance did come at a cost, since the 820 was fairly power hungry and tended to give off a lot of heat because of its rather large 90nm (nanometer) manufacturing process -- making it impossible to use in laptops. Depending on the specific model, the computer itself came outfitted with 512MB or 1GB of RAM, with an…
The Windows Device Manager shows all the device drivers, including those for cameras such as YouCam, installed on a computer. Camera devices fall under the imaging devices category in the Device Manager. The Device Manager gives you the option to enable, disable and update drivers. If a driver is not working properly, you can use the Device Manager to troubleshoot. It also allows you to roll back an update in case the updated driver is causing problems.
There are many reasons why you might want your parents to buy a new computer, and there are many reasons why getting a new computer is a good idea. However, convincing your parents that it's a good idea to shell out the money might be a little tricky, particularly if your parents' views on technology and thriftiness don't match yours. Come up with a persuasive argument that outlines the reasons you need a new computer, without being pushy or bossy, and remain respectful throughout the discussion.
Many HP Pavilion Slimline s3000 owners go the entire life of their system without having peeked upon its inner workings. The internal components may appear complex and intimidating to some users. However, it takes only a few moments to open the s3000 case to view or access components.
The Alienware M11x is a gaming laptop designed for high performance, but due to the rapid evolution of computer hardware it may be outdated before long. As with most laptops, the room for upgrading after the initial hardware customization at the time of purchasing is very limited. Fortunately, the RAM can be upgraded and doing so may produce significant performance gains.
The Antec 1200 is a full tower case designed with the cooling of computer components in mind. It comes pre-installed with a 200mm fan on the top of the case, three 120mm fans in the front of the case, and two 120mm fans in its rear. There are also two optional mounts for 120mm fans on the side and in the middle of the case. Installing additional fans or changing fans is a matter of connecting them to the power source and screwing them into the case.
As you add more components to a computer --- hard drives, disk drives and video cards --- the power demands on the computer become greater. This can sometimes lead to problems; the solution is generally to upgrade to a power supply with more power output to handle the extra strain. It can sometimes be helpful to add up the power requirements of the components in your computer, but this information is not always easy to find. Any power supply with more output power than the original will be an upgrade to the system.