Power Supply

One of the most overlooked components during a PC upgrade is the power supply. It’s not something that’s obvious like replacing the CPU or RAM to improve performance, or improving a graphics card for better gaming. Hard drives can be added or replaced with bigger ones, or replaced with solid state drives for quicker reading and writing. But not being aware of its importance can result in upgrades not working the way you expect.

It’s such a weird looking thing, isn’t it? It looks like some sort of cyborg octopus. But there’s no need for a sonic screwdriver to handle one safely. Of course, if it’s damaged or misused, it’s as dangerous any other electrical item.

As you’d expect, the power supply unit, or PSU, is what distributes power to other devices. Different models provide different amounts of power, and may vary in how many plugs they have. As it’s function is to allow other devices to operate, this makes it easy to overlook. This can result in problems when buying a fancy new graphics card, that turns out to not be usable in the computer.

Possible problems include the existing PSU not having the right plug available for the new upgrade, or not being able to meet the new power requirements due to the improved hardware. A good power supply supports the rest of the computer, and thus tends to be like good directing on a stage, in that when it’s only noticeable when things go wrong.

Common problems from a lack of power can include hardware not performing properly and the computer shutting down randomly. Certain graphics cards will actually detect a lack of power and reduce performance to prevent problems, which is helpful for keeping the computer running but is only a temporary fix as it negates the purpose of having more powerful hardware.

A PSU, for all it’s weird wriggly nature, is single item that is upgraded by being replaced with a new one with a higher wattage and potentially more plugs. For advice on how to ensure that your planned upgrades will work in your computer, or help with problems that sound similar to the ones mentioned here, free to contact us on 01392 984873 or email us at help@solidarityit.com

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