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Tips for buying a PC

Buy your PC

Buying a suitable PC for you and your family is not such an easy task. Even more so if you are buying an unbranded or assembled one. But brand or not, you need to get the facts right before you shell out your money. First, why do you want to buy a PC? Is it because almost everyone has one these days, or because you have money to spare? If these are the reasons you want to end up spending a lot of money on something that you are unlikely to use. But if your reasons are that you want it for business from home, or for your children for their education, or to work at home, or you want to surf the net, you are on the right track. Now let’s get to the details.

What do you need it for?

Take a sheet of paper and write down everything you need to do with the computer.

Spreadsheets, word processing, surfing the web, sending emails, playing games. Running multimedia, viewing movies, playing music, CAD drawings, graphic design, web design. Online learning and programming.

Make your list. Why? Because different needs need different PCs. You don’t really need the latest computer if all you are going to do is browse, no matter what the provider tells you.

When making your list, be sure to look a little further and see what else you might be using the computer for. For example, do you think you are likely into graphics design? Or will the kids start playing all those high-end games?

How much money do you want to spend?

Know the money you can spend on the PC. Then you have to look for the PC that suits your needs and your budget. This may need a balance even if your requirements are huge and the budget is not. This will also decide whether you should go for a branded PC or an assembled one.

Brand or assembled?

This is a question that has been asked for a while. A year ago, branded. We recommend that you choose a PC for which you can get guaranteed service and support. For a more detailed analysis, see our July story called Branded or Not?

What is it?

This is the part that has the basic circuits and components of the computer. Processors, memory, BIOS, expansion slots, etc., go on the motherboard.

What is available?

Right now you have two wide options for a motherboard. Motherboards based on the Intel 810 chipset have the graphics and audio capabilities on the board itself, that’s what they mean by integrated graphics and on-board audio. In case you are looking for better graphics (for example you will be switching to high end games, or graphics, or CAD or you need better sound surround audio, sound editing), you will have to get some high end video. and audio cards. That such motherboard is not supported. You could, in such letters.

What to ask the seller:

What are the possible updates on this motherboard? What processors are supported? How much will the updates cost?

What is it?

The brain of the PC. You don’t always have to go for the fastest one. And having a processor that is fast is not enough. The rest of the system has to keep up with it.

What is available?

Among the low-end available are Celeron, AMD K6.2 and K6-3, and now AMD “S Duron. They are available in different clock speeds, choose the one you can afford. A Celeron 600MHZ. Among the high- Processors end are Pentium III and Anthon from AMD. At PIII 667 MHz.

Also remember that a processor alone cannot make the PC shut down. For example, a PIII on an 810 motherboard that doesn’t have much graphics capabilities is not much use.

How much do you need?

If you are going to work on office applications like word processors and spreadsheets, and some navigation, a Celeron or AMDK6 series, or Duron would suffice. For jobs that need more processing power, you should opt for a Pentium III or Anthon. You will find some Pentium IIs on the market, but Intel no longer makes them.

What is it?

This is the place where all your programs and data will be stored on the PC. The performance of your PC will depend on the speed at which your hard drive can read data and transmit it to the other parties. The speed of a hard drive is measured in rpm. These days most hard drives are clocked at 7200rpm. And some others available in 7.5GB, 15GB, 20GB hard drives, and for more information on how to care for your hard drive, see the Hard Drive Guide in this issue.

How much do you need?

Most PCs now come with 8-10GB of hard drive space. With fat OS and fatter office games and suites, you’ll need a bit of space. 17 GB is quite common, now even 30 GB is not surprising. So take those 1GB deals with a big bag of salt.

What is it?

The place where information is stored for a time so that the processor does not have to keep looking for it on the hard drive.

What is available?

The more you have, the better it will be. Many PCs still come with 32MB of RAM; We recommend that you choose at least 64MB. If you are a gamer or you like heavy graphics, you will need 128MB.

How much do you need?

The more you have, the better it will be. Many PCs still come with 32MB of RAM; We recommend that you choose at least 64MB. If you are a gamer or you like heavy graphics, you will need 128 MB

What is it?

This is a card that does the processing of everything related to the screen. You could have a fast processor, a lot of ROM, and a hard drive to suit it all. But if the screen can’t match all of this, the speed at which things were rendered will take years to appear on the screen. The card has its RAM, called Video RAM (VRAM).

What is available?

As we said earlier, some motherboards have this feature built in, but others require you to have a graphics card for this. You get a variety of cards now.

How much do you need?

If you like games and heavy graphics and CAD and 3D modeling, you should have a card with at least 8MB of VRAM, 16MB if you can afford it. For other purposes, 4 MB of VRAM is sufficient.

All software comes on CD. Many computer magazines that teach you how to use computers come with CDs. Therefore, a CD-ROM drive is a must. You now have the option to opt for CD-RW drives or even DVD drives. And some providers have the check to see PC without them.

Higher X ratings, like 48X, 52X for a CD drive, don’t mean the drive will run at breakneck speeds. In fact, for the routine things that open a CD tray, having a CD run automatically, an 8X will do just fine. But if you had to rip songs from your audio CDs to convert them to MP3, you would need a faster drive.

A DVD drive is great if you’re going to watch a lot of movies on your PC, but make sure the video card, sound card, and speakers match.

Choose a CD-RW drive if you are burning a lot of CDs, keeping backups, making MP3 CDs, etc.

The basic PC:

To run productivity applications: word processors, spreadsheets, presentations, navigation. Using email, using personal information managers. Plays music and videos, some light games, and multimedia CDs.

Specifications:

  • Celeron 550 MHz or higher / AMD K6 series or Duron 550 MHz or higher
  • 64 MB RAM
  • 15 “color SVGA monitor
  • 10-12GB ATA / 66 hard drive
  • On-board video and sound
  • 48x or larger CD drive
  • 101-key keyboard
  • 3 button mouse
  • 56 kbps modem

The high-end PC –

For heavy gaming, graphics, multimedia creation, sound editing

Specifications:

  • Pentium III 700 MHz / k-7700 MHz or higher
  • 128 MB RAM
  • 17 GB ATA / ^^ hard drive
  • video card with 32 MB VRAM
  • 101-key keyboard
  • onboard sound (for those who are interested in sound editing and composition, a high-end sound card like Creative SoundBlaster Live is needed)
  • 17 “monitor
  • Scrolling mouse
  • 56 Kbps modem

Sound card and speakers:

The sound card processes the sound you hear on your PC. Sound cards these days not only make multimedia applications sound great, they also allow you to compose, record, and edit your own music.

Display:

No more 14 “monitors. You can get in your other type of 15” monitor, color monitor, 16-inch monitor and 17-inch monitor are available in the market.

PORTS –

Ports are where peripherals connect. The mouse and keyboard go into their respective ports. The serial ports accept modems. Parallel ports support printers, scanners, etc. Now there are USB ports for USB printers, scanners, digital cameras, etc. There are now Fire Wire t00 ports, but these are useful for those who are into video editing and those tasks that require a large amount of data to be transferred in one go.

Keyboard and mouse-

There are a variety of mice to choose from. Find one that you are comfortable working with. There are different types of keyboards. Again, look for one that doesn’t require you to hit hard to type – it feels ergonomic. You can also opt for devices that have programmable buttons / keys.

Software-

You need an operating system; the common one is, of course, Windows 98. Now, the latest version of Windows for home is Windows Me.

You need business suits, or at least programs that make word processing, spreadsheets, and presentations. You need an Internet browser and an email program. You will also need an antivirus, some system diagnostic tools, some graphical programs and some useful things like media players (to run your movies and play music), file compression tools like WinZip. Then of course there is a world of games and multimedia titles to explore.

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