The ultimate PC upgrade
After experimenting with various different types of upgrades for PC’s and laptops I can conclude which options made the biggest increases in speed!
Adding more memory
Adding more memory to your machine will speed up your machine. The amount of increase you will notice will depend on one main issue and that’s how much you have in the first place. If you only have 1 gig of memory its quite likely that its causing a bottle neck and slowing your machine and adding more memory would give you moderate speed increase, however if you already have 2 or more gig of memory I have found that adding more doesn’t give you any real noticeable increase! Overall I would say that increasing your PC’s memory offers the smallest speed increase.
Changing the CPU
This is something that’s not always possible, if you have a laptop its probably not going to be an option, but if you have a tower or desktop system where you can get to the CPU its worth checking to see which CPU you have and what the fastest CPU your motherboard can support. With the price of CPU’s dropping as new ones come out you may be surprised at how little a CPU upgrade could cost. I have upgraded several machines by replacing the CPU’s with faster ones. the speed increase was certainly more noticeable than than the memory upgrade option.
Changing the hard drive to an SSD
Changing the hard drive is feasible on most types of PC. On some laptops its just a case of removing a few screws and sliding the old one out but you may find getting into some of the smaller net-books a problem. this is something I encountered when swapping the drive on a ASUS net-book, it took about half an hour to open up to get to it! A solid state drive or SSD is a hard drive without the moving parts, it contains no motor, head or disc platter so its lighter, uses less power, more reliable and quicker, much quicker in fact! Its hard to quantify speed increases in PC’s but its much more noticeable than increasing the memory or upgrading the CPU. The only drawback is that SSD’s are a more expensive than standard hard drives. I fitted a 120 gig SSD in to my ASUS netbook. I was able to live with the small size because I generally don’t store files on it and 120 gig was more than enough for the operating system and the software I use. I elected to format the drive and install everything from scratch rather than use the cloning the original hard drive software that comes with some of the SSD’s. For me the speed increase was about twice to four times as fast, depending on what I was doing. Finally I had found an upgrade that made a difference.
I was so impressed with the SSD that I only lasted about a week before I bought one for my main tower PC. I installed the operating system on the new SSD and used the original 500 gig hard drive for file storage.
Without doubt the best upgrade to sped up your machine is the replace the hard drive with an SSD. For the price and ease of doing it there’s nothing else that comes close. I’ve done it to both of my machines and I wouldn’t want to go back to having the operating systems on hard drives again.
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