Many components go into making up a computer and the choices available
on any given component can baffle even the educated mind. Here is a
breakdown on some of the main components that go into making up a
modern personal computer system along with some technical info which
may help you understand your computer a little better. The Cleddau
Computer Clinic can supply all of the components shown at excellent
There are two main types of monitors available, CRT & TFT.
CRT stands for Cathode Ray Tube. This is a large valve which
dictates the deep, TV style shape of this type of monitor. Indeed,
CRTs are still widely used in television construction hence the
similar shape. A decent 17" monitor costs well under £100 these days
and should be considered the minimum specification when purchasing a
TFT - Flat Screens
TFT stands for "Thin Film Transistor". Each pixel is made up of
three tiny transistors, one for each of the primary colours used in
VDU technology, Red, Green & Blue.
This technology does not require a cathode ray tube to be present
hence the monitor case can be very thin and is very popular with
people who want to spend a bit of extra money for the convenience and
style that a flat screen monitor can offer. A decent TFT monitor will
cost around the £200 mark making it the more expensive, but not
necessarily the best option.
Case & Power Supply
The case is a matter of personal preference but the power supply
inside is probably the most overlooked component of a computer system
but also one of the most important.
Many crashes of a computer can be traced back to an sufficient
capacity power supply and while it is very easy to compare speeds of a
processor, or the capacity of a hard disk, weighing up which type of
power supply you need can be a complicated business because there are
no specific standards to make your comparisons with.
One 350Watts power supply can offer a very different quality of
service to another power supply also rated at 350Watts.
However, on the whole, any retail computer system should come with
power supply that will run the components of the system comfortably.
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