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PC Components: A Quick Guide

Posted In Hardware - By Techtiplib on Tuesday, April 29th, 2014 With No Comments »

If you aren’t technically savvy, you may struggle to understand the various PC components. Many PC components simply look like a load of jargon with a few numbers and abbreviated words thrown in for good measure. We’ve devised a quick guide to help you make sense of all that “jargon” which will in turn allow you to make a more informed decision the next time you go to purchase a PC or laptop.

PC Components: A Quick Guide

RAM

This refers to the memory storage for temporary files. The amount of RAM you have on your computer can dictate how fast it operates when you have several webpages open, or are switching from program to program. For regular computer users 4 GB of RAM would suffice, for gamers or avid entertainment users, you would need about 8 GB. Business users should look for 16bg of RAM to ensure maximum performance.

Hard Drive (abbreviated sometimes as HDD)

This is where all your data and files will be stored. The bigger the data files you are storing the bigger the hard drive space you will need. If you intend on downloading large files such as movies, music and software programs, you may need a 500 GB hard drive. Regular users who only save some Word or Excel files and browse the internet can settle for much less.

Processor (also referred to as the CPU – the Central Processing Unit)

The processor is the heartbeat of your computer system and the speed of the processor dictates the performance of your overall system. Processors are difficult and expensive to replace so make sure your system has a processor that is more than sufficient.

Motherboard

This is the part of the system which essentially connects all the components together. It is the circuit board of the computer. The memory board controls the memory slots, USB slots, chipsets and several other connections. It contains critical components such as the CPU and the memory.

Operating System

This element facilitates the running of applications on your system. An example of an operating system is Windows 8, the latest Windows operating system found on computers. It acts as the mediator between software applications and the computer hardware.

ROM

Read-only memory stores the systems which boots the computer and initialises the entire computer system. When the computer turns on and you see messages appearing regarding initialising and hardware testing, this is the input/output system of the ROM at work.

PSU

This is the power supply unit of your computer, the component which supplies electricity to power the system. The PSU is responsible for ensuring there is an adequate power supply for the computer to run correctly and also allow the battery to charge up.

Optical Drive

The optical drive allows the system to play and read discs. If you wish to watch blu-ray DVD’s, listen to a CD or burn files to a disc, your computer will need to have a Blu-ray drive. Computers with a DVD reader will only play and read CD’s, CD ROM’s and DVD’s.

There are of course several other elements of a computer system, but by understanding these core components, you should be able to make a better purchasing decision when buying a PC.

Author Bio:

Carlo Cretaro is a freelance blogger and social media consultant for a range of Irish and UK businesses including Eurieka.ie.  Eurieka.ie is an online reseller of computers, laptops, tablets, printers, monitors and related equipment.

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