If your PC is getting a bit long in the tooth, the temptation to replace it with a newer model is always there. The very latest in top-spec laptops, Notebooks, PCs and computers are constantly advertised and the pressure to buy the latest model is intense. The price of new technology is far lower proportionally than when computers first became a common household addition, but do you actually need to replace your entire system or can you save yourself time and money by upgrading what you already have?
The question you have to ask yourself is: does my current computer do everything I want it to do? If the answer to that is yes, then your current system will probably be sufficient for some time to come. But if you are determined to upgrade, then you don’t have to replace the entire system to enhance its capabilities – you can upgrade areas of your existing hardware for a fraction of the cost.
Old computer monitors are cumbersome, energy-greedy and have a limited lifespan. The easiest way to upgrade your set-up is to start with the monitor. Flat screens take up far less desk space, are higher resolution (meaning far better picture quality) and modern LED screens are also much more energy efficient. The old monitor can be consigned to the recycling centre and a sleeker, more efficient flat screen is the quickest way to upgrade your set-up for a fraction of the cost of a new computer system.
The more RAM you have, the faster your PC will run. Applications use the RAM memory to run and the operating system uses it to ensure that applications work correctly. RAM is an add-on that is simple to install and relatively cheap. However, different machines take different types of RAM so contact a manufacturer and they will be able to tell you which RAM you need simply from the make and model number of your PC.
Hard disks have a finite amount of storage space available, so updating your storage system can free up your computer’s hard drive. A remote hard drive is also an excellent way of keeping all your data and information safe, enabling you to restore your computer to full working capacity in the event of a catastrophic hard drive failure such as a virus attack or mother-board problem. Files such as films, music and other downloads take up a great deal of storage space so downloading these onto a remote hard drive is a great way of freeing up your computer’s disk space and helping it to run more quickly.
Graphics cards are easily replaced. These plug-ins power the display and the faster and more capable your graphics card, the sharper and clearer your images will be. This is particularly useful if you are into computer games, as the graphics in modern games are exceptionally sophisticated and require high-resolution graphics.
Your processor is the heart of the computer. This determines the speed that your computer operates at and replacing it can be a complex task, so only attempt it if you are absolutely sure you know what you are doing. You may also need some specialist equipment and to be sure that the processor you wish to insert is compatible with your system so if you do decide to upgrade your processing power, it is best to talk to an IT expert first.
You can also upgrade your current PC by adding USB ports, network cards or modems is all relatively easy to do by simply opening the casing of the unit and inserting the cards into the PCI slots. Upgrading your computer is one of the simplest and cheapest ways of increasing the speed and capability of your computer without having to throw the entire system away and buy a new one.
There is also the problem that your new computer may have trouble recognising all of your old data from your previous machine, making data transference difficult and frustrating. So is it better to stick with the devil you know? Modern computers are adaptable and easily upgraded. Whilst you don’t always need to be at the cutting edge of technology, it’s wise to consider at least one upgrade in every computer’s life. If you’ve reached the limits of your current computer’s capacity, then perhaps that is the time to think about finally replacing it for a newer model.