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May 27th 2019

Upgrade or replace your PC?

If you’re "techy", you might have considered upgrading components of your PC. And it can be a tricky thing trying to decide whether to upgrade components of your slow, old equipment, or to simply replace the whole unit; especially with the ever-dropping costs of solid state drives (SSDs) which provide an incredible difference in speed and performance.

There are a good few factors to consider that can completely change the answer. I’ll break it down into a few sections.

How old is it?

If your device is of a certain age, the risk of component failure starts to outweigh the cost benefits of upgrading different parts of your PC.

Sure, replacing the hard drive, and putting some more RAM in it might improve the speed for a short while, but inescapable factors come into play when you’re not replacing the whole unit.

Typically, after five years we recommend replacing a device, as the chances are the components are outdated, warranties will have run out, and any software may have advanced past into a newer generation, and older hardware may stop being supported.

Does it need to be “high end”?

If you’re using a machine that needs to be top-of-the-line for your needs (for example; graphic designers typically require a high-end video card) then it may be in your best interest to upgrade components periodically. With continuous changes in software demanding more and more resources from your machine, you may need to keep on top of hardware demands more frequently than if you’re simply using your machine for processing emails, documents and your company accounts.

Do you have a lot of data?

If you’re thinking of replacing the hard drive, it’s worth thinking how much time and effort it’s going to take to move over your existing data. An SSD can be used for most systems in addition to your existing drive, which can mitigate this problem. But if you’re replacing the drive, you need to be mindful about purchasing a drive big enough to accommodate the information, and how long it’s going to take to copy it, and make sure all your programs are going to remain functional too!

Compatibility

This can swing both ways.

You have an older machine that is in need of a speed boost, but – you have some older programs on it, or you like the way the operating system works. A small upgrade to part of the system would definitely benefit. Newer machines often come with incompatibilities with older operating systems (such as programs for Windows XP, and even Windows 7), but the programs themselves might not even run on newer motherboards or processors.

However, if you’re thinking of upgrading any of your components, you need to make sure it’ll work with the rest of the PC. Processors and RAM sticks have different shapes, motherboards have different ports, and everything has different power requirements.

If you'd like some help reviewing your hardware requirements, selecting or sourcing new IT equipment, contact our tech team today.

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