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PC Gaming Vs Console Gaming

Video gaming is nearly a modern sport. It is incredibly popular in just about every age group, from pre-teens to forty year old veterans. Nintendo Wii has even made progress in the senior citizen market by offering our older citizens a very accessible way to have fun and stay a bit more active. There is at least one television channel purely dedicated to video gaming, available from any cable or satellite television provider which carries Voom HD Networks. Even professional leagues and sanctioned video game competitions, not just for the glory of the frag but also cold hard cash.

So, with all this gaming the question is out there waiting to be asked: What’s the best platform? You shouldn’t be disappointed to learn there is no easy or straightforward answer to that question. In fact, the reasons so many platforms exist and enjoy their own success is because each has something to offer. Depending on your needs, personal tastes, and gaming style you will likely find that one platform has more to offer you personally than the others.

The Microsoft Xbox 360 has a solid catalog and is really the gold standard all around. It’s not the best at any one thing but the system does everything well. Sony’s PlayStation 3 was touted to have better graphics than the Xbox 360 but even at launch it was hard to tell. These days some games might look better on one system or the other, they’re considered pretty equivalent.

Unfortunately, Sony lacks some of the intuitive features Microsoft incorporated into their system. It’s not about the hardware, it’s about the overall experience. If you are strictly gaming, chances are you will have a better gaming experience on the 360. That being said, Sony’s machine is much more than just a game console. It’s a unique sort of computer. You can access media files over a network, browse the web, and best of all you can watch high definition Blu-Ray movies with the integrated Blu-Ray disc player. In other words, if you want more than just gaming, the PS3 beats the 360 fairly handily.

Nintendo’s Wii system offers a unique experience that really can’t be equated to any of the other systems. Technically it is inferior, but the motion controls Wii is based around can be so intuitive it offers a completely new way to game. This game system is extremely appealing to people who have never found video gaming appealing before. For veteran gamers, some may find it appealing and some may not. All will agree it’s a different sort of experience.

PC gaming is where the REAL hardcore gamers go, though. Being a PC gamer can be expensive because you are frequently choosing to buy upgrades to get the most out of the latest games. PC gaming also isn’t as straightforward as console gaming. You don’t simply put a disc in the drive and play, you have to go through an install process. You can get hand held controllers but most games are set up best for keyboard and mouse control. Still, for hardcore gamers these negatives are overcome by the fact that they will always have the latest graphics and technology for the ultimate gaming experience.

Examples of Computer Hardware – Understanding Computer Components

It is easy to get confused when you are researching computers. Many newcomers get frustrated and it seems like the salesman at the local big box electronic store is speaking a foreign language. Many terms and words apply to the computer industry that does not apply to any other aspect of living. What is software? What is hardware? What is the CPU? ROM? RAM? Let’s take a moment to look at some examples of computer hardware.

Computer hardware is just that, the “hard” surfaces you can touch. Hardware is what the computer is made of. Software is the programs running on the hardware that tell your computer what to do when you use the computer to balance your checkbook, look at email or surf the internet. Examples of computer hardware include:

o The Monitor – what you view the results on, like a television.
o The CPU – central processing unit is where all the complicated math and computing happen.
o CD or DVD ROM – This is the drive that “reads” cd’s or dvd’s. ROM’s are NOT burners the “read only.”
o CD or DVD RW – This is the drives that “burn” or “make” cd’s and dvd’s. Typically they can read and write to a cd or dvd.
o Memory – This is just as it reads; the more memory your computer has, the better it will function.
o Printer – This allows you to print documents (your resume,) pictures, and many times printers have more than one function. Many printers can double up as scanners, fax machines and copiers.
o Wireless or Hardwired Routers – These are the devices that allow you to connect to other computers in your “network.” They can work singly or in conjunction with “modems” which are the devices that allow you to connect to the internet.

Although the list above is quite extensive, it does not include all the examples of computer hardware you might run into. Lot’s of devices are considered hardware (remember, you can touch hardware.) The list of devices not mentioned include cd’s and dvd’s, flash drives, floppy drives and disks, the mouse and keyboard, and the hard drives that store the operating systems and software on.

Computers have different configurations of hardware. Some offer more memory, storage, or optional drives. The type of computer you purchase will depend on what you do with it. There are different configurations available for virtually every application and desire. Whether you are going to play games, just email and surf the net, or plot the distances between the planets and stars, there is a computer set up and ready for you to purchase. Each will be configured a little differently based upon what demands your applications will place upon the hardware.

Hopefully you now have a better understanding of the different examples of computer hardware and can make an informed decision when making your next computer purchase.

Gaming Hardware Guide – Learn What It Takes To Make A Gaming Computer

So you’re into gaming, and you’re looking to turn that shabby computer into a gaming powerhouse? You don’t necessarily need an expensive gaming computer though, you just need some decent gaming hardware.

If you don’t exactly know what gaming hardware is, I’ve put together a guide explaining what it takes to have a gaming computer. You don’t necessarily need all of these components, so I’ve broken them down by level of importance.

3D Video Card

First and foremost, if you have to have a decent video card to play the latest 3D games. You can have the best computer around, but if it has a cheap video card, 3D games will appear to run as slow as if you had a slow computer. You don’t necessarily need the latest video card, because at the rate they come out it will be outdated in a few months anyway.. unless of course you have $500 burning a hole in your pocket and you really want to.

CPU

Since your CPU is the heart of the computer, this one is kind of obvious. Like most things, you don’t need the fastest CPU around, but if you want a real gaming computer, you’ll want something at or around 3 gigahertz (or 3000+ for you AMD enthusiasts).

You’ll also want something that has a fast front side bus. It’s usually best to find a motherboard and cpu that have similar front side bus speeds, because they work together, and the overall speed of the front side bus will only be as fast as the one with the slowest speed on it. It’s kind of like driving a sports car on a highway with a 55 mile per hour speed limit, the car might be able to go 155, but the highway will only let you go 55.

Memory

Also known as Ram, it’s what applications and games use to store information, the more the better. It’s good to have at least 512 Megabytes, but real gamers have 750 megabytes, to 1 Gigabyte or more. Memory is extremely cheap these days, it’s one of the cheapest and simplest upgrades you can do.

It’s not only the amount that matters though, they also come in different speeds. DDR2 is the fastest, cheapest memory you can get right now. If you have SDRam, you’ll probably want to upgrade your motherboard and CPU so you can have faster memory. It’s kind of drastic, but your games will most likely be sluggish if your equipment is that old. Regular DDR is good enough for gaming, it just doesn’t have the throughput that DDR2 does.

Motherboards

Today’s fastest motherboards have faster Front Side Bus. The Front Side Bus (or FSB) is essentially the highway that runs from the CPU to the Ram, the bigger the highway, the more traffic it can handle at once, making calculations faster. Another thing to watch out for is what kinds of hard drives it supports. If you want SATA or SCSI drives, either your motherboard needs to support them, or you need to purchase an expansion card to plug them into. You’ll also want a motherboard that supports the fastest computer memory you can get, which is currently DDR2.

Hard Drives

Hard drive speed may not sound important, but it can be one of many bottle necks that your computer runs into if it’s not up to par with the rest of your computer. If you purchase regular IDE hard drives, you’ll want at least 7200 rpm (rpm = rotations per minute, the more rotations the faster the drive).

If you want real speed though, you’ll want a Serial ATA hard drive (SATA), which is one of the fastest hard drives you can get without buying server grade hard drives (SCSI), which are pretty expensive. Your motherboard has to support SATA or SCSI though if you plan to purchase these kinds of hard drives, or you have to have a PCI expansion card to plug them into.

Sound Card

If you want gaming quality sound, then you definitely need to replace that stock or built in sound card for a decent gaming sound card. And if you want the full effect, go for a dolby 5.1 surround sound enabled sound card for that super crisp sound your games can produce. Mix that with some 5.1 enabled speakers, and your gaming experience just took a new turn.

Computer Cases

Ok, so computer cases aren’t that important for speed, but if you want your new gaming computer to look slick too, then you need a nice colored case. Your friends will be jealous, and you will finally be able to look at your computer and smile, because it looks so awesome.