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    A general computer guide

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    Chris
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    A general computer guide Empty A general computer guide

    Post by Chris on Thu Mar 01, 2012 1:46 am

    If you want a new computer, don’t buy one build one. First what you need to know is the parts you'll need, I recommend buying parts at newegg they have a wide variety of parts and great support.
    Motherboard: Your motherboard is the main essential of your computer without all your other parts would be useless, the different type of motherboards are
    XL-ATX: largest motherboard available
    Extended-ATX: little bit bigger than the normal ATX
    ATX: most common and regular motherboard
    Micro-Atx: somewhat smaller than a ATX motherboard
    Mini ITX: very small motherboard


    Processors: This is a very important part of your computer you could say this is the power house of your computer
    There are to major brands of processors AMD and Intel both can satisfy your different needs

    AMD: AMD stands for Advance Micro Devices and is the second largest manufacturer of processors in the world. AMD was founded in 1969. Since then they have the number 1 competitor with Intel. They have been trading performance blows with Intel since the 90's.AMd still uses pins on the cpu itself, AMD does offer LGA chips but they are meant for server applications.
    Intel: Intel is the largest processor company in the world. They have been making processors since 1968.When Intel first released Socket 775 in 2004 they stopped using pins on the processors. Instead the motherboard contains the pins which touch the contact points on the processor. This is known as LGA. LGA stands for Land Grid Array. LGA was first designed to allow for a higher density of pin contact points to ensure a stable power connection. It also turned out that the chances of damaging the CPU during handling or installation decreased.


    RAM: RAM stands for Random Access Memory. Another term for RAM is memory. A single stick of memory is referred to as a DIMM. Which stands for Dual In-line Memory module. In today’s world of computing there are 2 types of memory to know about. DDR2 and DDR3 memory. The “DDR” stands for Double Data Rate. As you may have assumed DDR3 is faster than DDR2. On average it is twice as fast.
    DDR3 and DDR2 share the same 240-pin count design. This does not mean that they are interchangeable. There are many factors here which do not allow such to happen. If you were to try to insert DDR2 into a DDR3 slot, or vice-versa, you could potentially physically damage the memory stick and quite possibly the memory slot.

    Graphics card: graphics cards are what supply the video to your monitor
    Graphics cards are what supply video to your monitor. Graphics card are either NVIDIA or ATI branded. NVIDIA and ATI supply the cards to companies like EVGA, XFX, MSI and others to rebrand, modify and sell them. Everyone needs to have a graphics card (or onboard video). But how good of one you needs depends what applications you run. A person who only uses the internet, video streaming and basic applications such as word processors is not going to need a monstrous graphics card. It would be a waste of resources. Next up are people who do all the above and possibly some graphic designing. Certain applications are able to make great use of a graphics card with rendering and whatnot. There are cards made specifically for graphic workstations but they are far more expensive than their gaming counterparts. And are designed with graphic design in mind which can hinder their performance in areas such as gaming. Next we have the group of gamers. No I do not mean Facebook or any other flash games. Games such as Battlefield: Bad Company 2, Crysis, Metro 2033 and others. These games require a decently powerful graphics card to lay at optimal settings.

    There are more factors than just the uses for a graphics card. A giant factor is your monitor’s resolution. A person who uses a resolution of 1024x769 is not going to need an insanely powerful video card. Unless he plans to buy a new monitor that supports larger resolutions. Using a high end graphics card on a small resolution will not let you receive the full benefits that the card has to offer. People who play on larger resolutions such as 1680x1050 and larger are the ones who are going to need more powerful graphics cards.

    Another factor in graphics card performance is your processor. If you have a slow processor you could essentially bottleneck your card. This means that your processor does not have enough power to keep up with your video card and you will not be getting your maximum performance.


    Hard Drives: All your files and operating system is stored on your hard drive. There are two different types of Hard drives SSD or solid state drive they use flash based memory and have a less chance of failing because they have no moving parts also there transfer speeds are faster than HDD's which ill get to later. Due to the fact that SSD's are flash memory and have a less chance of failing they will cost more than a HDD.
    HDD drives have moving parts and have more chance of a failing. HDD's contain platters on a disk that spins around to find your stored memory theses cost significantly less than SSD's

    Power supply: this is what gives all your parts power once plugged into an outlet. There are two different types on power supplies modular and non-modular. Modular means there are no hard wired cables in the PSU which means you can choose which cables you want to connect and don’t want to connect. Non-modular means all the cables are hard wired in the PSU you can’t remove or add cables like you can on a modular PSU

    Optical Drive: Optical Drives have been around for a very long time. An optical drive is simply a device capable of reading data from a physical disc. Apart from reading data from discs certain optical drives can write data to discs. Light Scribe is another feature that optical drives can offer. It allows you to etch designs on the tops of physical media.
    CD/DVD is the most common drive you can find. Nearly every drive made today in addition to reading these types of media will allow you write data to acceptable media. CD/DVD’s are used for programs you buy from stores, movies that you buy and operating systems.

    Blu-Ray is the newest widely used format in the physical media wars. Blu-Ray was developed by Sony and is used for PS3 games and HD movies. There are drives available that offer Blu-Ray read and write support. But generally they tend to cost quite a bit more than their counterparts.

    Light Scribe is a feature built into some CD/DVD drives that allows a user to laser-etch labels to acceptable media. If you purchase Light Scribe certified media and you have a drive that supports Light Scribe you can have whatever image you chose to be etched in the media. The only downside is that they are only in black and white.

    Case: A case is a place to store and protect all of your components. Cases come in many different shapes in sizes. Some cases are designed for portability, airflow or even water-cooling. When purchasing a case you must make sure it supports the form factor of your motherboard. There are some features which cases contain that can make your life considerably easier.

    Operating systems: The Operating System is the software that brings all of your components together. It lets your components talk through an underlying interface. The 3 most well known operating systems are Windows, Linux and Mac.

    The Windows operating system is by far the most widely accepted OS to date. It is on millions upon millions of personal, business and educational computers around the world. The newest revision of Windows is known as Windows 7. Windows 7 is the successor of the widely unpopular Windows Vista. Windows 7 changed the GUI (Graphic User Interface) overall system stability and performance impact.

    Linux is a mature OS based off of Unix. It is a completely free and open source operating system. Linux is the core of many popular distributions such as Ubuntu, Fedora and Arch Linux to name a few.

    Mac is a proprietary operating system that was developed for Apple computers. The core of the Mac OSX is Linux. Mac OSX is not meant to run on traditional PC hardware. However there are OSx86 variants that can run off of certain traditional hardware.

    One of the big questions about operating systems is to go x86 (32 bit) or x64 (64 bit). At one point in time the support for x64 was extremely limited and severely buggy. But since then the architecture has matured a great deal. There is simply no reason to choose x86 over x64. The chance of you running into an incompatible application is very small. The biggest advantage of x64 is the ability to use more than 4GB of memory. X86 have a limit of 4GB (2GB for Windows 7 Starter) usable. This includes the memory on your graphics card. Which will severely limit your performance on memory intensive applications.
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    A general computer guide Empty Re: A general computer guide

    Post by Break on Thu Mar 01, 2012 2:09 am

    Stickied great guide! I've been looking at making my own computer for a while so this will help!

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