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Computer Parts

Is your PC running slow? Maybe you’ve tried optimization software and investigated all the common solutions, but nothing seems to be working. In that case, it’s time to upgrade some of your hardware.

But which components, exactly? Where should you start? Which upgrades will give you the best bang for your buck, and which are a waste of time?

Although you should always tailor your upgrades to suit a particular need, here are the best upgrades to make in order of generalized importance

1. RAM

Adding more memory is the easiest and most accessible PC upgrade you can make. It’s affordable, you can do it on almost any machine (including many laptops), and it doesn’t require much tech know-how.

If you’ve never cracked open your PC case before, then this is the place to start.

Upgrading RAM delivers an instant performance to almost all PCs that are running slow. For resource hungry tasks — like video editing or gaming — the more RAM you’ve got, the better. Even for casual use, extra RAM will enable you to have more apps running in the background and keep a greater number of tabs open in your browser.

2. Graphics Card

We’ve got this second on the list, but if you’re a serious gamer then it should probably be the first thing you upgrade. If you aren’t a serious gamer, 3D modeler, or 3D animator, then you probably won’t ever need to upgrade it at all.

Skimping out on graphics is an easy way to save on costs, so PC manufacturers tend to go with integrated graphics cards rather than dedicated graphics cards. If you have an integrated card, then moving up to a dedicated one will work wonders.

3. Data Drive

There are two reasons to upgrade your hard drive: you’re running out of space or you want faster performance.

If you’ve done everything you can to free up your hard disk storage and still regularly run out of space, then you will need to swap it out for a larger one. Not only does a full hard drive make it impossible to save new data, but it can also impact performance. At the very least, try to keep 10 GB of free soace for the operating system to use.

4. Processor

Upgrading your PC’s processor is a far more advanced task than the other upgrades we’ve covered so far. Not only is it physically trickier if you’re doing it yourself, it’s one of the more expensive upgrades and there are compatibility issues to worry about, too.

Of course, there are compatibility issues with the other upgrades as well, but they’re much easier to negotiate. More importantly, a processor upgrade isn’t always a good thing and may not bring you the performance improvement you’re looking for.

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