Introduction To Parts of A Computer
The article will serve as an introduction the basic parts of a computer. Different components collectively referred to as PC hardware, team up to make a computer system. You can buy a computer from a branded company or get the various parts separately in order to assemble your own model. In addition, when some parts of a computer are faulty, you can buy these components from a dealer for replacement. However, you need to know that every computer model has certain components like the RAM memory that may differ from other models.
I have not purchased a fully built machine since about 1994. That was a Zeos 486 running at 20Mhz and I paid 5000 for it. I still remember throwing that machine into the trash about five years later. In those days, it didn’t take long for a PC to become completely obsolete. Though I was the talk of the local computer club that was popular in those days when I purchased it. Everyone was green with envy. Soon, I found I had a slow paper weight that couldn’t even support the new larger drives of the time.
Here is a Look at Some of the Main Parts of a Computer System
I will include basic computer parts pictures through this article to help you have an idea of what the look like.
- Computer Case
- The Central Processing Unit
- The Motherboard
- The Memory
- The Power Supply
- The Hard Drive
- Disk Drive
- Video Card
- Cooling Considerations
- Computer Monitor
- Input Components (The Mouse And Keyboard)
A Closer Look AT the Major Parts of a Computer
The primary function of a computer case is to house and protect your machine’s internal hardware. This case comes with the power supply that connects to the motherboard. Some of the factors that you should consider when buying your computer’s case include: the size, design, power supply and the number of drive or expansion bays as well as the cooling system.
There are two different types of computer casing in the market, namely: the AT model and the ATX model. AT models are outmoded while the ATX (advance technology extended) is commonly used to support the ATX power supply and motherboard.
The Central Processing Unit
Commonly abbreviated as CPU, this is the computer’s brain. The primary role of the CPU is to calculate all the mathematical formulas that enable your computer to perform various tasks. Intel produces some of the most popular processors. Arguably the CPU is the most important of the parts of a computer.
There are two major manufactures of central processing units. Those are AMD and Intel. There are major battles on the net as to which is better. You can get more power with less cash by using an AMD. AMD’s have a reputation to run hotter. I currently have an AMD in my PC and it does run hot. I need to add more cooling to my PC. Intel is the leading seller of CPUs.
It is important to buy a motherboard that matches your CPU. I usually by a combo. That is a mother board with the CPU sold as a unit. Trying to understand which CPU works with which motherboard can be a real challenge.
I always look for a “bare bones kit.” If I can find one that matches my needs, then I go with that. Sometimes these will also come partially assembled. Usually you will want to upgrade the memory or the video card. You may need to add a hard drive to a bare bones kit. Each is different. Some will include matching memory while other bare bones kits will not.
This is the spine of the computer, without which you cannot have a fully functioning computer system. Every important component of the computer is connected to the motherboard. In order to understand the components of the motherboard, it is important that you first appreciate the important parts that are included in it.
Some of the major components of the motherboard include the processor or CPU socket, the memory slots, the SATA and ATA interface connectors and the main power connector.
Computers come with different types of computer memories that are responsible for storing different types of data. The most commonly known computer memory is the Random Access Memory, abbreviated as RAM. It is referred to as random access because you can easily access any stored data within your machine as long as you know the right pathway that intersects the particular memory cell. RAM has an exact opposite that is referred to as SAM or Serial Access Memory. SAM stores memory is a series of memory cells that you can only access in order.
Other types of computer memories include Read Only Memory or ROM, the Virtual Memory and the Cache memory.
The Power Supply
The power supply unit or PSU is designed to supply the computer with energy. It converts incoming AC current to DC current. A computer’s PSU is rated based on its maximum output power. A computer’s power supply is the recommended wattage that is required to power the machine. Using a greater wattage will only be wasteful. Using a lesser wattage on the other hand may cause your PC not to function properly and thus shut down.
The Hard Drive
The hard drive is main form of storage on a PC machine. It stores the vital software such as your computer’s operating system. It is also used to store the end user data such as documents, digital images as well as music and video files. The disk drive is also commonly referred to as Drive. You can also partition the hard drive into a number of logical drives thus making them appear as independent disks. Hard drives utilize either serial ATA (Advanced Technology Attachment) or IDE (Integrated Device Electronics) interfaces. The other technology that is making inroads into the hard drive scene is the RAID (Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks). Two of the most important factors that you should consider when buying disk drives are the speed and size.
This refers to any portable drive that you can use to store data. The most commonly used disk drive is the hard drive. It stores information that you have in your computer, including the operating system. The price of the disk drive is mainly determined by its storage space.
This expansion card enables the computer’s monitor to display images, pictures and other graphics. It is one of the most important hardware necessary for proper functioning of your machine. It is also referred to as a graphic accelerator card, graphics card or display adapter. This card determines the speed with which images are relayed to the screen in terms of the number of frames per second (fps). It transmits signals to the monitor via the graphics processing unit (GPU). A video card’s speed is determined by several factors including the number of pixel pipelines, memory clock speed and the core clock speed. Like other computer hardware, video cards can be sold separately or integrated into the motherboard. Internal or integrated cards are often less powerful than external or dedicated video cards. Some high end external video cards come with additional features like video capture and FireWare support. The two main types of dedicated video cards in the market are the Accelerated Graphics Port (AGP) video cards and the Peripheral Component Interconnect Express (PCIe) video cards.
An integrated video card is a chip on your motherboard. Often these do not have their own CPU and rely on the CPU to provide that function. That means more of the resources of your CPU will be free for other process if you opt for an external video card. Though I refer to it as external, it is internal and uses one of the slots on your motherboard. Often they are seated in one of the slots but it may overhang above one of the other slots rending it useless.
Gamers generally need an external video card. The simple video chips on a mother board can make games run in a choppy fashion. It can make playing the game nearly impossible. If it a competitive game, you will be at a great disadvantage if you are playing against another person with a high end video card while you rely on an on board video solution.
Most computers come with the typical heatsink and CPU fan. However, some computers like Apple G5 Power Mac come with liquid cooling systems. Some of the popular options that you can consider adding for additional computer cooling include water cooling system, memory cooling system ( which works much like a CPU heatsink), and the heavy duty fan system. A CPU heatsink is usually fastened to the top of the CPU to prevent the CPU from overheating. It also comes with a thin gel called thermal paste that ensures that the heatsink and the CPU are in full contact. The thermal paste acts a seal in way and adding an additional layer of cooling protection to the inside parts of a computer.
The massive looking silver tower is the heatsink for the computer. It looks like the same one I have inside my machine and attacked to my AMD CPU. It sits directly atop the CPU which is attached to the motherboard. When fully assembled two fans will be attached. There is one fan on each side. The thermal paste lies between the CPU and the computer heatsink to ensure ultimate heat conductivity.
The monitor is the component where the quality performance of your computer is reflected. This is the vision component that will tell you whether your computer is perfect or not. There are two main types of monitors in the market, the Cathode Ray Tube (CTR) and the Liquid Crystal Display (LCD).
Input Device (the mouse and keyboard)
Those these components are not internal parts of a computer they are important. A comfortable keyboard is essential toward your enjoyment of the PC.
This is an essential hardware for desktop computers as it is the navigation tool used for clicking on varied options. It is also used for selecting objects and accessing information via your monitor. The standard mouse comes with the left and right buttons. There are different types of mouse in the market including the ball mouse and the laser mouse.
This another crucial component of the computer. It enables you to enter commands into your computer by punching numbers, alphabets and signs. Other functional keys in the keyboard include the Control, Alter, 12 F-keys, Delete and Backspace buttons, Page Up and Page Down buttons. In total, a standard keyboard comes with 101 keys.
Computers represent some of the incredible technological advances in the past decades. While most people simply see a box on their desktop, the truth is that there are several components working together inside that box to perform several important tasks. It is important that you know something about the various parts of a computer. This will be very important when you need to repair or replace the components of your computer. I will follow this article with an in depth look at the each of the various parts of a computer. This is meant to serve as and introduction to help you understand the various parts of a computer.