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Computer Parts Guide

What Notebook Should I Buy? - A Laptop Buyers Guide - forum.notebookreview.com
Hello again people!

Simple guide today designed to as simply as possible break down what the specs of a computer mean!

CPU (Central Processing Unit):

This is the "brain" of the computer. It does all of the calculations and work for everything your doing with the exception of graphics.

To be easier to understand think of it like a person sitting at a desk who is doing things.

Important terms:

Core Count (typically 2-4): The number of cores directly correlates to performance

Clockspeed (Measured in GHz where 4+ GHz is currently high end): The higher the number the faster the processor

RAM (Random Access Memory):

This is what allows the computer to multitask. When your computer slows down because you have 1000 chrome tabs open, your probably running out of ram.

Think of ram as desk space, how much room you have to place things.

Important Terms:

Clockspeed: 2133MHz and up is the clockspeed for DDR4 RAM. Not important for most workloads

Storage:

Stores your programs, photos, documents, and more for the long term for you to access whenever.

Think of storage as the drawers at the desk.

Important Terms:

Hard Drive: Older type of storage. Slower but cheaper to get high in higher capacities

Solid State Drive: Newer type of storage. More expensive but far faster than hard drives

Capacity: Typically measures in Gigabytes or Terabytes this represents how much data you can store.

GPU (Graphics Processing Unit or Graphics Card):

This is the processor in charge of solely graphics. Gaming, video playback, and everything you see on screen uses the graphics card.

Gaming needs a good graphics card!

Not sure if there is a good desk metaphor here... Maybe your assistant who answers your calls and emails but does nothing else? TBD on this one

Important Terms:

VRAM (Video RAM): Ram the grahics card uses to store textures. More =/= faster! It does mean you can store higher resolution textures though. 4GB is becoming the standard and up for current gpus.

Core Count: This depends on AMD vs Nvidia, but the more cores the better. Just note AMD and Nvidia cores don't "weigh" the same. So fewer cores from one doesn't mean necessarily it's slower than another from the other company.

Clock Speed: Measured in MHz, faster is better.

Monitor:

This is the screen you look at to interact with the computer.

Picture the computer screen on your desk

Important Terms:

Resolution: How crisp the picture will look. 1080p is FHD or Full High Definition and is the standard. But other resolutions are fairly common like 768p, 1440p, and 2160p (4k).

Refresh Rate: How smooth the pictures will be. 60Hz is the standard and means the screen updates 60 times per second, but many gaming laptops are starting to offer 120Hz refresh rates which look noticeably smoother for gaming and general usage.

GSync/FreeSync: Technology for Nvidia and AMD respectively that stops tearing and stuttering when gaming.

Feel free to give feedback! I'd love to hear it!

 
Date: Jan 10, 2017   


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