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Ways to Upgrade Your Gaming Setup

kokou adzo

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Two People holding Black Gaming Consoles

When you finally get time to settle down and play your favourite games, nothing is worse than a sliding screen, constant buffering, or low-res graphics. You miss the richness of the game at best, and at worse, you miss a critical shot. It is frustrating and ruins the gaming experience pretty quickly.

So, let’s look at a couple of things you can upgrade to ensure you get the best Pc gaming experience.

How long will a PC gaming rig last?

If you are buying a premade one rather than building your own, you will get a solid two years at least and up to 4 if you buy a newer model to start with.

You will notice that you need to upgrade when it starts to take a little longer to load games, and there are a few spikes in lag (that aren’t internet speed related). The drop in performance is telling you that your hardware is older, the memory isn’t enough, or the graphics card can’t keep up.

So, what can you do to bring your older PC gaming rig up to date?

Check game requirements!

Every game that is released will have a minimum set of requirements, from playing high-speed FPS to playing a slot machine online. That minimum set of requirements has been tested, and your gameplay will be fine. They won’t be optimal, but you can enjoy the game anyway.

Before you download or buy any games, make sure that the rig you have can run it.

Memory 

Everything that your computer needs to do will require memory. RAM holds data temporarily while various applications are using it, and when gaming, it isn’t just the game that is using some. Most factory-built gaming rigs have some memory but often slots for you to add more.

If your model doesn’t have extra slots, then you can replace the RAM stick that is there for something much bigger.

You will see a considerable positive impact when you switch the RAM for something bigger, but you can do a couple of other things too.

Storage

Consider storage and memory to be best friends; if you notice your game freezes a lot, then you are struggling with capacity. If you still have an HDD, then it is an excellent time to switch to SSD.

A Solid-State Drive boots faster and is considered to be more reliable than an HDD, not to mention, when it comes to gaming, an SSD has a higher transfer rate meaning the whole system can manage to run more.

SSD installation isn’t difficult, and a short online guide can help you to fit it; alternatively, bring it to your local PC store, and they might just do it for you.

CPU

When it comes to upgrading the processor, this is often better done by someone who is comfortable with the internal hardware. Your motherboard and memory need to be compatible with the processor; if not, everything will need to be replaced in one go.

The cooling system will also need to be powerful enough to keep it all cool. A processor upgrade is a little more involved, but ultimately it will make your computer more efficient.

Something worth considering here is if it is going to be cheaper to buy a new rig or if upgrading these parts will be more cost-effective.

You can find CPU stress tests online that can give you an indication if your system is underpowered.

Graphics

If you are gaming on a standard PC, one not designed for gaming, the graphics card is going to be standard too. You can tell if you need to upgrade your graphics card if games freeze, the screen is tearing (slide showing), or you have lag (not related to internet speed).

PCs built for gaming will have a graphic card that is better, but there is a world of difference between playing in low-res and ultra-high. Graphics cards can be replaced any time you like and just slot into where the current one is. The more comfortable you get, the more likely you are to build from scratch or add additional slots here.

Peripherals

Once you have made other upgrades, it is time to look at gaming peripherals. Upgrade old monitors to newer ones so they have a clearer and cleaner visual experience; sometimes, this can be done before the graphics card just to see if there is an improvement before investing in a graphics card.

A mouse and keyboard with enough buttons, macro ability, and responsiveness can speed up how you play. Gaming-specific ones are typically the best option as they are designed to give games the click feedback and multiple macro-options – as well as extra information screens.

Headphones will improve the musical experience, but they will also help with regular team comms too. Get one with a good quality mic (retractable is a good idea) so that you can speak to your team or the opposition clearly.

Upgrading your PC can be done a bit at a time so that you stay within budget – you’ll just need to decide which bit should go first. Online stress and compatibility testing can help you with that decision.

Kokou Adzo is the editor and author of Startup.info. He is passionate about business and tech, and brings you the latest Startup news and information. He graduated from university of Siena (Italy) and Rennes (France) in Communications and Political Science with a Master's Degree. He manages the editorial operations at Startup.info.

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