How to choose a system unit

The system unit is not a single integral device. He is himself a complex of interconnected components, each of which defines technical specifications and specifications a computer.

How to choose a system unit

How to choose a system unit: a list of characteristics for which need to pay attention

When choosing a system unit for home or office, you must pay attention to the following technical specifications:

  1. Model, clock speed, number of cores built CPU

  2. RAM size;

  3. Volume and type of hard drive;

  4. Clock frequency and memory capacity of the integrated video card;

  5. The number of case fans.

Other parameters that you can pay attention to, but not required:

  1. Power supply unit;

  2. Specifications motherboard.

Options that determine usability but not features system unit:

  1. The presence of an optical drive;

  2. The presence of a card reader;

  3. Front panel ports

  4. Ports on the back.

Integrated processor

Embedded processor

Overall computer performance depends on four parameters – processor clock speed, its quantity computing cores, RAM and speed hard drive. Graphics card or graphic specifications accelerators also matter, but not prevailing. They are important in primarily for graphics processing – in the form of rendering models in computer games or video rendering in appropriate editors.

Therefore, if high productivity is required, and the processor is more powerful – with 4 cores and a high clock speed. The most popular in this segment are models from the Intel Core i5 and i7. However, it is worth remembering about the generation of the processor. The same Intel Core now exist in seven generations, and the first is not too productive – unlike the latter.

Model of the Intel Core processor, except for the line (i3, i5, i7) supplemented by a four-digit digital code. The higher this number, the accordingly, higher chip performance.

RAM size

RAM size

The computer during its work records a lot of data in random access memory. Therefore, the higher its volume, the faster work system unit. Minimum volume needed today – 2 GB It will be enough for “study”, web surfing, working with documents, etc. The optimal value is 4 GB.

If you need to perform more demanding tasks, including number to play, then the amount of RAM should be higher. For a gaming computer requires a minimum of 8 GB.

Volume and type of hard drive

hard drive type

The computer’s hard drive stores all the necessary data – from files of the operating system itself to documents, photos and user downloads. Therefore, the larger its volume, the accordingly, more information can be written to memory a computer.

The minimum required amount for the operating system to work is 20 GB But this is clearly not enough for the user. For example, a movie in acceptable quality “weighs” 4.5 GB. A flagship game in Installed form occupy more than 100 GB each!

Thus, you need to choose the hard drive size based on their needs. But it’s better to “stock up” than then feverishly choose what to remove to make room. Minimum The recommended hard drive capacity is 320 GB. 500 GB is better. 1 TB and more – if you plan to arrange a “file storage “.

The type of hard drive is also important. SSDs are faster and more stable than HDD. However, they are much more expensive and have limited operational period.

The best configuration is to use an SSD drive. small volume (up to 100 GB) for the operating system and HDD high volume (from 500 GB) for user files, games and programs.

Features of the integrated graphics card

integrated video card

Without a video card, the computer will not be able to display the image on screen. So she is needed anyway. However, it is worth remembering that video cards come in two types – integrated and discrete.

An integrated graphics card is usually much less power. It uses the resources of the processor itself and RAM for in order to process graphic information. Therefore for games it almost doesn’t work – except for the oldest and undemanding to the technical characteristics of the computer.

A discrete graphics card is better suited for graphics processing. information – both games, and rendering of clips or editing images. And the more powerful it is, the better it copes with these responsibilities.

Discrete Graphics Card Performance Affects Power built-in computing chip and video memory capacity. And if information on the first parameter is difficult to obtain, then the second usually indicated on price tags or in the list of technical specifications system unit. In short, the more video memory – the it’s better. But also more expensive. Therefore, buy a system unit with a powerful a video card is advisable if a gaming A configuration or system for processing video or images.

Understand whether integrated or discrete is integrated into the system unit graphics card, easy. If the screen connector is on the top of the back of the case – it’s integrated in it. If on the bottom – then discrete. The accuracy of this “test” is enough high.

The number of fans in the case

Almost all components of the system unit during operation intensely heated. Processor, for example, when executed some particularly demanding task can become hot 80-100 degrees! The video card, hard drive, unit are also heated power, even RAM and cables that connect everything it is among themselves.

High heat leads to a drop in productivity and reducing the operating period of the system unit. For, so that the temperature is not too high, most “flaming” elements are equipped with fans – coolers. They are installed, for example, on the processor, video card and unit nutrition.

But due to the closed configuration of the system unit, these coolers cope with their task is not too successful. Are needed additional fans that will be pumped into the case cold air and remove hot from there.

For an average configuration, only 1 cooler on the rear panel is enough. When it comes to powerful or just high-performance system unit, more fans are required. 2-3 will be enough.

Power supply unit

The main function of the power supply is AC conversion from a household network to a permanent one, necessary for the computer to work, and its delivery to components (motherboard, video card and etc.). And the power of these components depends on how much current they consume.

Therefore, the more installed in the system unit of components and the more productive they are, the more powerful the power supply required.

However, it is worth considering that in ready-made configurations it is already installed a power supply of sufficient power, so worry about it the question is not required. The problem can only occur when upgrading (installation of new components) of the computer. Often power unit installed in the finished configuration is limiting and not involves connecting other devices. Then when upgrading You will need to install a new one.

Motherboard options

motherboard options

The motherboard is the main functional element of a computer. The rest of the components are connected to it – from the processor to the video card.

Pay attention to its characteristics is required only in that if you plan to upgrade the computer. Then the following are important parameters:

  1. Number and type of expansion slots (required for installation expansion cards – video cards, network cards, sound cards, specialized devices);

  2. The number and frequency of RAM slots (last the parameter is important for creating an optimized configuration);

  3. Chipset specifications (necessary for optimization) interactions of all peripheral equipment – the processor, video cards, read-only memory and USB devices);

  4. Processor socket (determines which processor can be installed in motherboard);

  5. The presence of an integrated video card;

  6. The presence of built-in “expansion cards” – sound, network card and etc .;

  7. Connector configuration (for example, if you need to output an additional USB unit on the front panel, this will require separate connector).

However, in the vast majority of cases, these parameters can be do not mention it.


The choice of the system unit begins with the definition of goals, for which he will be used. Based on destination computer, you can identify the necessary and sufficient characteristics. First of all, you need to pay attention to the characteristics processor, random access memory, and also video cards.

For specialized configurations, it is also advisable to consider power supply capacity and number of fans built into body.

For configurations that are planned to be further upgraded, you need to take into account the features of the motherboard so that you do not have to change it.

And finally, it is advisable to take into account the usability of the system block.


In the following articles, our experts tell you how to choose powerful server and secrets of choosing a video card – an overview of the best manufacturers.

Attention! This material is subjective opinion of the authors of the project and is not a buying guide.

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