Central Processing Unit (CPU)
OK, on to the CPU is another critical piece of hardware in your gaming computer. It interprets and executes instructions and data contained in software program as well as the commends of its user. The power and performance of the CPU are the greatest determinants of your computer’s overall performance. For gaming you will need a capable CPU in your system to be able to run the latest games smoothly. I would highly suggest either the Intel Core i5 or the Intel Core i7 series of processors for gaming. They are the most popular, and provide the best performance for your money at the time of writing.Choosing between an i5 model or an i7 will largely depend on how much you want to spend on your processor, as i7 models are slightly faster yet a little more expensive.
Random Access Memory (RAM)
Ok, the RAM part is quite simple. Iâd just buy a couple of sticks of RAM modules to plug into the motherboard. To play the latest games now and into the future, I would say 4GB is the absolute minimum. With 4GB of decent quality RAM in your gaming system you shouldn’t have any problems playing even the most demanding games. Although, since RAM is so cheap these days and it makes such a difference to performance, a lot of you will want more RAM (6-8GB) to make your PC run even faster and make for an even more future-proof build.Remember, the more RAM the better, but to be safe make sure your motherboard will support more RAM. Most motheboards out right now will support up to 16GB, but it’s always wise to double check and also note how many RAM slots your motherboard has.There are different types of RAM you can buyfor your computer, such as SDRAM, DDR2 RAM, and DDR3 RAM. When selecting the type of RAM for your gaming PC, make sure your motherboards supports that particular type and speed of RAM that you plan to use. The latest type of RAM out on the market is DDR3 and this is the type of RAM I would recommend for gaming.
The video card in your gaming computer – in a word – must be absolutely top-notch stuff. If you’re going to play 3D games, then make sure the graphics horsepower in your computer are up tp snuff. I usually try to spend more on the graphics card if I have the budget. The graphics card processes all graphics-related work (especially 3D) and delivers the resultant output to a connected monitor. You’ll typically see that video card improvements move along at breakneck speeds – a new generation of video cards often replaces the old every 3-6 months.Very much like the CPU market, there are two companies that dominate the world of gaming video cards, ATI and nVidia. They make the best video card chips in the world. ATI is responsible for the Radeon series, while nVidia is behind the GeForce line of cards.Although ATI and nVidia make the graphics card technology you see in all the latest cards, they donât usually sell them themselves. They license their best video card chips to companies such as EVGA, Sapphire, and ASUS (just to name a few popular ones) who then sell their own variants on the original technology.The speed and efficiency of your video card isnât the only thing that counts. The latest 3D games and software make use of advanced 3D rendering effects such as anti-aliasing, anisotropic filtering, bump-mapping, pixel shaders and much more.If you run a game that was written with such features in mind, and your graphics card doesnât support them, you will experience a significant performance loss, or at worst the game wonât run at all. The best gaming video cards on the market try to keep up with all the latest 3D rendering techniques in the software world.Video cards contain a host of different features, options, connections, etc. Here I will outline the main factors you need to consider when choosing your video card for gaming:
Video Memory: The video RAM is the amount of memory your video card holds on-board for processing 3D images, and in general the more the better. The amount of video RAM you need depends on what video settings you want to play your games at, the resolution you will be playing at, and also whether you have AA (Anti Aliasing) enabled. I would recommend a video card with 512MB of video RAM as the minimum for gaming these days, and 1GB or more if you want to play your games on the highest settings.