Some of the biggest questions I get asked are things like "Why is my computer running so slow?" or "What kind of computer do I need to do this job?" And in most instances, the answer is "Buy the most powerful computer that your budget will allow!" Why is this?
It's quite easy to get a little distracted by a salesman in a computer shop, showing you all the wonderful bits of software and storage space that you might get if you buy a certain PC or Laptop, but of all the components you want to seriously consider, I would recommend that you find a machine that has the fastest CPU, the most RAM and the best Graphics that money will afford. If this means sacrificing a bit of software here and there, or getting one with slightly less hard drive space, then it's worth doing.
Software can be purchased or downloaded for free over the course of time.. and I hate buying a computer that comes preloaded with software that I will never use. The first thing I do with a computer is wipe it clean and install Windows on it fresh.
Secondly, as much as a large hard drive might be appealing, the core components are the items that you should invest your money in. Get a fast processor, get plenty of memory, get a good graphics card. Hard drives can be supplemented later with new drives, or external USB drives. You can currently buy a 1TB external drive for less that £80 in the UK, which means that if you can invest your original money into good quality components and worry about storage when you start filling it up.
Make sure that your power supply is up to the task to. I was surprised a year or two ago to find that the sole reason a server was running slow, was because the power supply was failing or not powerful enough. A quick swap of the power supply instantly kicked it's performance back where it should be. Think how many USB devices you need to connect and how much power they'll demand. Each device might use between 5 - 12v so add that up when you connect more and more items.
Power is everything to a computer, the more it gets the happier it behaves. If you need a computer that performs well, then you should expect it to need power in some way shape of form.
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