As a starter, it might be a good idea to take a quick refresher course in computer basics before you open your system unit. We'll start by looking at each of the partsof your computer system, from the system unit and everything inside to monitors, mouse and keyboards.
Here are the major components of a computer. As you can see, it consists of system unit, monitor, keyboard and mouse.
Computer System Components
Computer System Components

An important first step in understanding how a computer works is to know where to find and identify the parts that combine to make up the whole.
Remember, this article is just an overview; we'll go into more detail about each of the components inside the system unit as shown on the table of contents below.
Also, we will do the reviews for the majority components of a PC so you can have a better understanding on each of the parts and best deal for every components.

Mandatory Computer Components
CPU
Actually, the CPU also known as Microprocessor is the brain of your computer. It responsible for everything your computer does. Hence, the CPU will process almost all the instructions necessary for your computer to perform its duties and it will affect the overall speedand performance of the computer.
Normally, when you buy a CPU it is in a box. Inside the box contains the CPU, heat sink and CPU fan. The followings are the pictures of Intel CPU (left), AMD CPU (middle), and heat sink & fan(right).
Computer CPU and fan
Computer CPU and fan

CPU Brand:Intel and AMD.
The two major manufacturers of CPUs for personal computers are Intel and AMD. Then, people always ask, which is better? The truth is that most users won't see any difference between the two because both of them are more or less same. And since both companies introduce faster versions of most of their CPU models several times a year, this month's performance leader will be a mid-range version a year from now.
To see which CPU is installed in your system, go to the Windows System Propertiesutility. If your computer is running Windows XP, all you have to do is follow these steps:
  • On the computer desktop, right-click My Computer and choose Properties.
  • From the System Properties dialog box displayed, click the General tab.
System Properties Dialog Box
System Properties Dialog Box

  • The System:section of this dialog box tells you which version of Windows you're running;
  • The Registered to:section tells you who you are (or, rather, how your version of Windows is registered);
  • The Computer: section tells which type of processor and how much memory (RAM) you have installed.
The table below shows the both CPUs families:
Manufacturer
Processor Type
Recommended Usage
Intel
Celeron
Basic computing," e-mail, home computers*

Celeron M
Laptop (notebook) computers

Celeron D
"Value-priced PCs"*

Pentium 4
Digital home and office applications"* Image processing, games and multimedia

Pentium M
High performance laptop computers

Pentium D (Dual-core)
Multimedia entertainment, digital photo editing, running multiple applications, supporting multiple users

Core Solo
Very-high-performance laptop computers

Core Duo (Dual-core)
"Multiple demanding applications such as graphics-intensive games or serious number-crunching programs-while downloading music or running security programs in the background."*

Core 2 Duo
High-performance energy-efficient desktop and mobile computers

Xeon
Business applications, including Application servers, e-mail servers, Internet servers

Itanium
"Business-critical computing … with mainframe-class reliability"*
AMD
Sempron
"Everyday computing with built-in security"*

Athlon 64
"Leading edge performance with simultaneous 32-bit and 64-bit computing"*

Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core
Running multiple applications simultaneously

Athlon 64 FX
Running "the next generation of digital media and games"*

Turion 64
"Optimized to deliver AMD64 performance in thinner and lighter notebook PCs"*

Turion 64 X2
Multi-tasking, long battery life and compatibility with wireless and graphics technologies in high-performance laptops

Opteron (multi-core)
Servers and workstations running simultaneous 32- and 64-bit computing
*Quotes are taken from the official Web site of the productlisted.
CPU Speed
The speed of CPU is measured by frequency in Megahertz (MHz) or Gigahertz (GHz)with 1 GHz equals to 1000 MHz.
Example: 1.0GHz, 1.1 GHz, 1.13 GHz, 1.2 GHz, 1.3 GHz, 1.4 GHz, 1.5 GHz, 1.6 GHz, 1.7GHz, 1.8GHz, 1.9 GHz 2.0 GHz, 2.1 GHz, 2.2 GHz, 2.3 GHz, 2.4GHz, 2.53GHz, 2.6GHz, 2.8GHz, 3.0GHz, 3.2GHz, 3.4GHz, 3.6GHz or whatever latest.
As a conclusion, you should be able to answer the question - What is CPU? - The core component of your computer's operation. Everything else -disk drives, keyboard, mouse, monitor, and Internet connection, among others -is there either to provide instructions to the CPU, respond to data from the CPU, or both.

RAM

Actually, RAM is a volatile memorythat the computer uses to store program and data temporarily for execution. Volatile means that it is not permanent and can be change. It need power supply to keep the data stored in it.
All programs, instructions, and data must be stored in system memory (RAM) before the computer can use it. It will hold recently used programs, instructions, and data in memory if there is room. The more memory (capacity) in a PC, the more data can hold and the better your computer will perform.
If your computer doesn't have enough memory installed, its CPU must constantly retrieve data from permanent storage(hard disk). This method of data retrieval is slower than retrieving instructions and data from memory. In fact, if your PC doesn't have enough memory, some programs will run very slowly (or you might experience system crashes), and other programs won't run at all!
Here is the graphical illustration of a desktop RAM (left) and laptop RAM (right):
Computer RAM and laptop RAM
Computer RAM and laptop RAM

RAM Brand
There are a lot of brands, for example Kingston, Apacer, Corsair, Kingmax, etc. Most of the manufacturer offers life time warranty means that whenever the RAM manufacturersstill produce the kind of RAM, the warranty is still valid.
RAM Capacity
Memory is measured in terms of bytes. One byte is equal to approximately one character in a word processing document. A unit equaling approximately one thousand bytes (1,024, to be exact) is called a kilobyte (KB), and a unit of approximately one thousand (1,024) kilobytes is called a megabyte (MB). A thousand megabytes is a gigabyte (GB).
The capacity of one piece of RAM ranges from 2 MB to 8 GB (8,000 MB) or whatever latest. Currently, most of the computers are using 512MB, 1 GB, 2 GB, or 4 GB of RAM.
Types of RAM
Before you buy new memory for your computer, it's essential to identify the type you need. The table below lists the RAM modules:
Name
Number of Notches in Card Edge Connector
Usage
30-pin SIMM (single inline memory module)
One
Desktop computers (most earlier 286, 386, 486, Pentium I)
72-pin SIMM
One
EDO RAM in desktop computers (mostly Pentium I)
168-pin DIMM (dual inline memory module)
Two
SDRAM in desktop computers (mostly Pentium II and III)
184-pin DIMM
One
DDR SDRAM in desktop computers
184-pin RIMM
Two
Rambus in desktop computers
240-pin DIMM
One
DDR2 SDRAM in desktop computers
240-pin DIMM
One
DDR3 SDRAM in desktop computers
144-pin SODIMM (small outline dual inline memory module)
One
Notebook computers
200-pin SODIMM
One
Notebook computers
Note:The 30-pin SIMM already obsolete.
Each memory modules come in a confusing number of different physical sizes, speeds, and other characteristics. Below shows the relative sizes, shapes, and speedof several module types.
1) Types of 72 pins RAM
EDO (Extended Data Output) - Access Speed: 50, 60, 70 nanosecondsFPM (Fast Page Mode) - Access Speed: 50, 60, 70 nanoseconds
2) Types of 168 pins RAM
SDRAM (Synchronous Dynamic RAM)
Memory
Speed (MHz)
Max Bandwidth
PC 66
66
0.53 GB/second
PC 100
100
0.80 GB/second
PC 133
133
1.06 GB/second
PC 150
150
1.20 GB/second
PC 166
166
1.20 GB/second
E.g. PC 100: 8 bytes X 100 Mhz = 800 MBps/0.8GBps
3) Types of 184 pins RAM
DDR (Double Data Rate) SDRAM
Memory
Speed (MHz)
Max Bandwidth
PC2100 (DDR 266)
133
2.13 GB/second
PC2700 (DDR 333)
166
2.66 GB/second
PC3200 (DDR 400)
200
3.20 GB/second
Here are the graphical illustrationsbetween DDR and DDR2 desktop RAM. You should notice the key notch positions of both types of RAM are in slightly different position.
Computer DDR and DDR2 desktop RAM
Computer DDR and DDR2 desktop RAM

4) Types of 240 pins RAM
DDR2 (Double Data Rate 2) SDRAM
DDR2 400 MHz (PC2-3200)DDR2 533 MHz (PC2-4200)DDR2 667 MHz (PC2-5400)DDR2 800 MHz (PC2-6400)DDR2 900 MHz (PC2-7200)DDR2 1000 MHz (PC2-8000)DDR2 1066 MHz (PC2-8500)DDR2 1150 MHz (PC2-9200)DDR2 1200 MHz (PC2-9600)
DDR3 (Double Data Rate 3) SDRAM
DDR3 1066 MHz (PC3-8500)DDR3 1333 MHz (PC3-10600/10666)DDR3 1375 MHz (PC3-11000)DDR3 1600 MHz (PC3-12800)DDR3 1625 MHz (PC3-13000)DDR3 1800 MHz (PC3-14400)DDR3 1866 MHz (PC3-15000)DDR3 2000 MHz (PC3-16000)
Here are the graphical illustrations between DDR2 and DDR3 desktop RAM:
Computer DDR2 and DDR3 desktop RAM
Computer DDR2 and DDR3 desktop RAM

5) Types of 200 pins RAM
DDR PC2100 200-pin SODIMM (Small Outline DIMM)DDR PC2700 200-pin SODIMM DDR PC3200 200-pin SODIMM DDR PC4200 200-pin SODIMM DDR PC5300 200-pin SODIMM
As you can see, the RAM manufacturers is producing more and more advanced RAM in term of RAM capacity and speed. I hope this tutorial will answer your question on what is RAM, the RAM capacity and brand as well as different types of RAM.

Motherboard

All the critical subsystems, including the CPU, chipset, memory, disk drives, video and sound adapters, keyboard, mouse, and other peripheral components run directly on the Main board. Likewise, the interconnections among these components are laid into the Main board itself.
The motherboard performs two major functions:
  • it provides physicalsupport for the CPU, the memory modules, the expansion cards, and a long list of input and outputs, and
  • it carries digital data through its printed circuit board to and from all of the other components that make up a computer.
If you are building a PC, choosing the motherboard is the most important decision you make and can be one of the most difficult. If you are buying a PC, the motherboard it uses determines its functionality and future upgradability.
Here is the graphical illustration of a computer main board:
Computer Motherboard
Computer Motherboard

Main Board Brand:
Here is the most common motherboard brandthat you can found:Intel, Asus, Abit, Gigabyte, AOpen, MSI, PC Partner, AsRock, ECS, Acorp, Biosstar, etc
Each brand comes with lots of different models with slightly different board layouts, color and additional features.
What is included when you buy a computer main board?
1) The Computer Main Board - The physical board
2) Driver CD - Complement CD to install all the device driversand utilities on the motherboard
3) Rear I/O Shield plate - to be install on the rear case
4) Main board user's manual- describe the details of the main board.
5) One 80-wire/40-pin ribbon cable or SATA data cable for HDD or CD/DVD drive
6) One ribbon cable for 3.5" floppy disk drives (optional)

Harddrive

Those files include Windows files and all the other programs files that installed in the PC. It retains the data even the computer is turned off. The hard drive also called hard disk drive (HDD) or just simply hard disk.
So the data is your HDD will not loss unless you delete it, format the HDD or hard disk drive spoilt. What's more, if computer viruses infect your system, they can scramble your valuable data, making your hard disk function abnormally, if at all. So always take extra care when working with your hard disk; if you don't, all the data can very suddenly and quite painfully become inaccessible.
Below are the picturesof a physical HDD (left) and a HDD that cover being open (right):
Computer hard disk drive
Computer hard disk drive

Note: Please do not remove the coverof your HDD as this will damage the disk.
HDD Architecture
Most hard disk drives consist of spinning platters of aluminum, glass or ceramic that are coated with a magnetic media.
Below is a picture of what the inside of the hard disk drive looks like. The Hard disk drive has four main components. The head actuator controls the head arm, which reads the data off of the disk platter. The chassis encases and holds all the hard disk drive components.
Computer hard disk drive architecture
Computer hard disk drive architecture

HDD Capacity and Size Information
When purchasing a hard disk drive, the term megabytes, gigabytes or terabytes may be confusing terms. The following table gives you an example of each of these terms and how they compare to other sizes.
Term
Equal to
Bit
0 or 1
Kb(Kilobit)
1,024 bits
Byte
8 bits (approximately one character in a Word document)
KB(Kilobyte)
1,024 bytes
MB(Megabyte)
1,024 Kilobytes or 1,048,576 Bytes
GB(Gigabyte)
1,024 Megabytes or 1,073,741, 824 Bytes
TB(Terabyte)
1,024 Gigabytes or 1,099,511,627,776 Bytes
PB(Petabyte)
1,024 Terabytes or about 1,000,000,000,000,000 Bytes
EB(Exabyte)
1,024 Petabytes or about 1,000,000,000,000,000,000 Bytes
ZB(Zetabyte)
1,024 Exabytes or about 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 Bytes
YB(Yottabyte)
1,024 Zetabytes or about 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 Bytes
Note:Example: 1 GB = 1,024 MB but for easy calculations, normally we just say 1 GB = 1,000 MB by ignoring 24 MB size. Also, 1 MB = 1,000 KB, etc.
The capacity of a hard drive ranges from last time 10 MB to the currently up to 1 TB size or whatever latest. However, most of the available HDD on the market today are starting from 80 GB and higher (bigger).
HDD Brand, Speed and Type
  • Brand: Seagate, Western Digital, Samsung, Hitachi, Maxtor, IBM, etc.
  • Speed: 5400 rpm, 7200 rpm and 10000 rpm (rotations per minute)
  • Type: Internal (IDE / SATA) and External (SCSI / USB)
HDD Interfaces (Types)
IDE (Integrated Device Electronics) / PATA (Parallel Advanced Technology Attachment)This is generally the most common interface used with old hard drives and is generally the easiest installation. When installing these types of hard drives ensure that the jumpers are correctly configured. If you have two devices connected to one IDE controller one must be set to master and the other must be set to slave.
PATA Hard disk drive connector
PATA Hard disk drive connector

SCSI (Small Computer System Interface)These require a SCSI Host adapter card connected into the system. These cards are mostly PCI bus cards. Some computer manufacturersmay have the SCSI port built onto the Main board. Nowadays, most desktop computers did not use the SCSI HDD and it's more commonly found on the server PCs. SCSI HDD provide two major advantages: improved performance relative to IDE and SATA in multitasking, multiuser environments, and the ability to daisy-chain many drives on one computer.
SATA (Serial Advanced Technology Attachment)This is the latest high-speed type of hard drive connectors that can transfer data at a blistering rate of 300Mb/s. Most of the latest hard drives are using this type of interface as there are faster than old IDE interface.
SATA Hard disk drive connector
SATA Hard disk drive connector

USB (Universal Serial Bus)
The Universal Serial Bus (USB) standard is a specification for an I/O connection that can support many kinds of peripheral devices including external HDD. The external HDD is make up using an internal HDD with a case with USB connection.
SATA socket, power connector and data cable
If you planning to buy a new SATA hard drive, make sure that your motherboard have the SATA connectors/sockets as shown below.
SATA connectors
SATA connectors

Also, you need to have a SATA power connector from the power supply unit. Else, you also can get a separate SATA power connector as an add-on to the power supply unit. This power connector will connect to the SATA HDD power connector.
SATA power connector
SATA power connector

Beside the power connector, you need another SATA data cable as show below. One end of the cable is connect to SATA HDD data connector and the other end connect to the main board SATA connectors/sockets.
SATA data connector
SATA data connector

IDE (PATA) Socket and data cable
Normally a computer main board has two 40-pin IDE sockets and one 32-pin FDD socket. Two 40-pin IDE sockets will connect to HDD and CD / DVD drive respectively using the IDE data cable. The only 32-pin FDD socket is connect to the FDD drive.
IDE Sockets
IDE Sockets

IDE Sockets
IDE Sockets











Keyboarding and Pointing Devices


A keyboard is a set of buttons that send coded signals to a computer, printer, or communications channel. Each button, or key, corresponds to one or more letters, numbers, symbols, or special commands.
When you press a key, the keyboard sends a code to the computer's CPU that corresponds to the character printed on the key. When the CPU receives the signal, it accepts it either as part of a command or as text input and later appears on your monitor screen.
The following are the normal layout of the computer keyboard:
Computer Keyboard
Computer Keyboard

There is another type of keyboard called ergonomic keyboard that attempt to move the keys closer to your fingers. This special keyboard designs have been introduced to make the process of typing more comfortable.
Basically when you choose a keyboard, few things need to be aware:
  • Keyboard buttons sensitivity
  • Connection type
  • Color and shape
  • Warranty period
Computer Mouse (Mice)
Computer uses a mouse or other pointing device to follow the movement of your hand, and convert that motion into instructions.
The following are typically a normal mouse look like:
Computer Mouse
Computer Mouse

How to choose a mouse? The differences among different models of mouse include:
  • Price
  • Connection type - PS/2, USB or wireless
  • Sensitivity and performance
  • Number of buttons
  • Size, color and shape
  • Warranty period
Types of Keyboard and Mouse
Generally, there are three types of keyboard or mouse available today:
  • PS/2 - connect to the PS/2 port at the rear panel of the system unit
  • USB - connect to the USB port at the rear or front/side panel of the system unit
  • Wireless - without wire


CD-ROM drive and CD-RW drive
CD-ROM (Compact Disk Read-Only Memory) is a drive which reads aluminum-coated round plastic discs. The CD-ROM disc is 12 x 12 cm with a width of 0.1cm. The disc is made of a polycarbonate wafer and is coated with a metallic film, usually an aluminum alloy. The 'x' on the CD-ROM drive speedsignifies the transfer rate of 150 kbps (kilobytes per second). Normally, the front panel of the CD-ROM drive stated the speed of the CD-ROM such as 52x. This speed signifies the maximum speed of the CD-ROM is 52 times 150 kbps = 7800 kbps; means in one second the CD-ROM can transfer data up to 7800 kilobytes.
By the way, the ROM part of CD-ROM means that you can only read data from the disk; unlike normal hard disks and diskettes, you can't write new data to a standard CD-ROM. However, the CD-RW drives are available that do let you write data to CD discs.
CD-RW (Compact Disk ReWritable)drives not only have capabilities to read the data on the CDs but also can write the data to the disc, i.e. CD-R or CD-RW with different reading and writing speed. For example, 52x32x52x on the CD-RW drive indicates write to the CD-R disc is 52x, write to the CD-RW disc is 32x and read from the CD-ROM drive is 52x. 1x in CD-RW drive signifies the transfer rate of 150 kbps (same as CD-ROM).
As the technology evolutions, the CD-ROM and CD-RW drives is going to obsolete as being replaces by DVD-RW drives. The layout CD-ROM / CD-RW / DVD-ROM / DVD-RW drives are more or less same. To differentiate between them, look at the front panel of the drives. Normally, the manufacturersstated will clear the type of the drive at the front panel.
Computer DVD-RW drive
Computer DVD-RW drive

DVD-ROM drive and DVD-RW drive
DVD-ROM (Digital Versatile Disc Read-Only Memory)drives fit into the same PC drives bays as CD-ROM or CD-RW drives. The difference between them is that the 'x' in a CD-ROM / CD-RW drive's speed signifies the transfer rate of 150 kbps, whereas the 'x' in a DVD-ROM drive's speed equals roughly 1.4 megabytes per second (Mbps). Therefore, a 1x DVD-ROM drive's run faster than an 8x CD-ROM drive.
DVD-RW (Digital Versatile Disc ReWritable)drives not only have capabilities to read the data on the CDs and DVDs but also can write the data to the disc, i.e. CD-R, CD-RW, DVD+R, DVD-R, DVD+RW, and DVD-RW. The 'x' in a DVD-ROM /DVD-RW drive's speed equals roughly 1.4 megabytes per second.
CD-ROM; CD-RW; DVD-ROM; and DVD-RW Drive Interfaces
IDE (Integrated Device Electronics) / PATA (Parallel Advanced Technology Attachment)These CD-ROM drives connect to an IDE socket on the Main board. Usually, the jumper on the hard disk drive is set as master and the CD-ROM drive is set to slave.
Rear panel of a CD / DVD drive with IDE connector:
Computer DVD drive rear panel
Computer DVD drive rear panel

SATA (Serial Advanced Technology Attachment)
The latest CD/DVD drives are based on SATA interface. The data transfer rate of the SATA interface is faster than IDE interface.
SCSI (Small Computer System Interface)
These require a SCSI Host adapter card connected into the system. These cards required PCI bus cards plug to the motherboard PCI Slot. It is highly recommended to get a card that matches the CD-ROM drive as some of the earlier drives had proprietary SCSI interfaces.
Types of CDs and DVDs Disc
Compact Disk Recordable (CD-R) With CD-R, you can write data to it once only. Once the drive is written to it cannot be erased. A CD-R is a special type of CD, which is coated with a photosensitive organic dye which allows a user to record information for backup and duplication purposes. With a CD-R you can browse the CD and choose individual or multiple files and restore them immediately. Nowadays, the normal CD-R can hold data up to 700 MB. The CD-R disks will be able to be used in any standard CD-ROM, CD-RW or DVD-ROM drive.
CD ReWritable (CD-RW)CD-RW has the capability of being written to at least one thousand times. Unlike the CD-R technology which uses a photosensitive dye, CD-RW disks uses an active layer of Ag-In-Sb-Te (silver-indium-antimony-tellurium) alloy that, in its original state, has a polycrystalline structure that makes it reflective. Also, the CD-RW disks will be able to be used in any standard CD-ROM, CD-RW or DVD-ROM drive.
Digital Versatile/Video Disc (DVD) - DVD-R and DVD-RW; DVD+R and DVD+RWA new standard released which originally was called Digital Video Disc. DVD offers an initial storagecapacity of 4.7GB (of digital information on a single-sided, single-layer disc, the same diameter and thickness of a current normal CD).
DVD-R and DVD+R is a non-rewriteable disc format means that the content of the disc cannot be erase once it's written. DVD-RW and DVD+RW is a rewriteable format (disc contents can be erase) and it is compatible with DVD drives.


Monitor

Resolution refers to the size of the images that can be displayed onscreen and is measured in pixels. A pixel is a single dot on your screen. The higher the resolution, the sharper the output - which lets you display more (smaller) elementsonscreen. Resolution is expressed in numbers of pixels, in both the horizontal and vertical directions such as 800 X 600, 1024x768, etc.
Monitor Type
There are two types of computer monitor, LCD and CRT:
Computer Monitor: LCD (Liquid Crystal Display)
LCD / Flat-panel monitors is a digital device that use backlit liquid crystal technology to produce images on a transparent plastic screen. Flat screen LCD monitors are showing up on desks everywhere. They save space, have sharper image quality, and look utterly modern, too. Here is the picture of a LCD monitor:
Computer LCD Monitor
Computer LCD Monitor

Computer Monitor: CRT (Cathode Ray Tubes)
CRT monitors are analog devices that use a continuous stream of electrons to create an image on the screen. That means that your graphics card must convert the computer's digital signal into a signal that the CRT monitor can understand. Here is the picture of a CRT monitor:
Computer CRT Monitor
Computer CRT Monitor

Monitor Brand:
There are quite a few of brand available on the market with different size and color of the computer monitor. These included: Samsung, BenQ, ViewSonic, LG, Dell, Acer, NEC, Philips, Gateway, etc.
Monitor Screen Size
We measure the size of a monitor by measuring from corner to corner, diagonally. Bigger screensallow you to expand the size of text and pictures to make them easier to read, and clearer. However, the bigger the monitor size, there are also more expensive.
Here is a typical monitor size available: 14", 15", 17", 19", 20", 21", 22", 24", [or whatever latest]
CRT or LCD: What's the Difference?
Advantages of LCD Monitors
  • Flat-panel monitors weigh less and take up much less space than CRTs.
  • The image on an LCD screen is sharper and brighter than a CRT.
  • LCD screens don't flicker.
  • Extended viewing is less fatiguing using LCD monitors.
  • LCD monitors are more energy efficient, so the cost of operation is lower.
Disadvantages of LCD Monitors
  • Fast-moving images on an LCD can smear.
  • LCD screens look best at just one resolution; they don't look as good with non-native resolutions.
  • The price of an LCD monitor is more expensive than a CRT with comparable quality.
Advantages of CRT Monitors
  • CRT monitor are cheaper.
  • Color depth and response time are better, so games, DVD movies, and TV shows may look better on a CRT (but LCDs are catching up).
  • A CRT looks good from any viewing angle.
  • CRTs can accurately display multiple resolutions and refresh rates.
Disadvantages of CRT Monitors
  • CRT monitors occupy a lot of desk space and weigh are heavy.
  • The phosphors inside a CRT eventually wear out; the image on a three-year-old monitor won't look as good as it did when the monitor was new.
  • CRTs consume three times as much electricity as LCDs.
  • Focus around the outer edges of the image is often less sharp than at the center.
  • The image on a CRT is not as sharp as the same image on an LCD at the LCD's native resolution.
  • Over time, a CRT monitor becomes less sharp that it was when new.
  • CRTs are not as bright as LCDs. This can be important in a room with very bright lights or outdoors in sunlight.
  • CRTs produce magnetic and electromagnetic radiation as well as a lot of heat.
Nowadays, monitor manufacturers mostly concentrate on producing LCD monitors instead of CRT monitors. This is the trend as most consumers are looking for LCD and the CRT monitors expected going to obsolete in the near future.


Computer Tower Cases



Most computer tower cases nowadays have different size and color that come with flexible front panel I/O: USB, Mic and Audio ports.
USB ports - All our cases feature at least two front (or side) USB connections, allowing you to connect a USB device directly to the case, rather than connecting it to the back of the PC.Mic port - enable you to plug in the microphone on the front panel of the chassis.Audio port- to plug-in the speakers so that the sound can come out from the speakers.
Computer Case
Computer Case

What is included when you buy a case?
You should expect the following three things when you buy a computer case:
  • Power Supply Unit (PSU) but some cases exclude the PSU.
  • Power cord - use to connect the Power Supply Unit to the multiple socket outlets to supply the power to the entire computer.
  • Screws and nuts - use to tighten the components that attach to the computer case such as motherboard, HDD, DVD-RW drive, display adapter, etc.
How to choose a case?
  • Cost and Warranty - While compare the case prices, remember that the cost to ship a case can be substantial. Also, the warranty periods offer by the computer stores.
  • The correct form factor - The ATX form factor will be ideal
  • Planfor expansion - Choose a case that leaves at least one or two bays for possible later expansion such as DVD drives.
  • Buy case and power supply separately, if necessary - especially if you prefer the high-end PSU.
  • Add supplemental cooling fans - to minimize temperature inside the case.
  • Sizes and shapes - Normal size and choose the shape that you like including the color.


Power Supply Unit


The power supply unit is usually located at the back of a computer tower case. Four-metal screws hold the power supply to the case. The power supply often mounts on rails inside the case, next to a large hole in the back panel of the case that provides access to the AC power connector and the exhaust fanfrom the back of the computer.
If you are looking inside the computer, the power supply unit is a metal box with several bundlesof wires connecting it to the rest of the PC components (i.e. motherboard, hard drive, CD/DVD drives). Here is how the PSU look like:
Computer power supply unit
Computer power supply unit

The bundles of color-coded wires that come out of the power supply each have one or more standard power plugs that fit the power input sockets on the motherboard, the disk drives, the fans, and other components inside the computer's case. Each bundle of wires has a plastic connector at the end.
If you are specifying a high-spec PC with a powerful graphics card and CPU we recommend you opt for a high-end PSU, around the 600W+ region. Otherwise, a basic standard 350W PSU is sufficiently powerful and is very quiet. The power voltage is written on the coverof the PSU.
Most of the time, you do not need to buy a computer power supply unit separately when buying a new PC because it is bundled inside the case. If the standard power supply is appropriate, you may save a few bucks by buying the bundle. Otherwise, buy only the case and install a high-quality power supply sized appropriately for your needs. You need to get a new PSU when it's spoilt and need replacement.


Optional Computer Components:


Graphics Card


There are many different types of graphics adapter as illustrated below.
To determine the type of VGA card that you are having, look at the 'contact area' of the card. The following illustrates four different types of computerVGA card that are still available today:
1) PCI (Peripheral Computer Interface)
PCI graphics card
PCI graphics card

2) AGP (Accelerated Graphics Port)
AGP graphics card
AGP graphics card

3) PCI Express X 16
PCI Express graphics card
PCI Express graphics card

4) Built-in/Integrated/On-boardMany motherboards are supplied with a built-in display card. The standard built-in display card would be very basic, hence many high-end motherboards are supplied without built-in display as it expected for a decent graphics adapter to be fitted.
Graphics Card brand
There are many graphics card manufacturers, but the following are some of the well-known manufacturers: NVIDIA, ATI, Asus, Gigabyte, Leadtek, HP, etc.
If you are looking for a high-performance VGA cards, the rule of thumb is that the more money you spend the more performance you will get. You shouldn't base your decision purely on the amount of memory the VGA card features, the actual gaming performance will be dictated mainly by the number of pixel piplines and memory clock speed.

Sound Card
The standard sound card is rather basic, and if you have a good speaker system you should consider opting for a higher-spec sound adapter/card to create realistic gaming and acoustic effects and detailed surroundsound.
With a sound adapter and appropriate software, a PC can perform various tasks, including:
  • Playing MIDI (music) and audio CD/DVDs
  • Playing stereo music, sound effects, and/or voice prompts in games, education, training, and presentation software, etc
  • Playing movie or video CD/DVDs
  • Supporting audio conferencingand telephony across a LAN or the Internet
  • Supporting text-to-speech software that allows the PC to "read" text aloud, aiding children who cannot read and people who are visually impaired
Computer Sound Card
Computer Sound Card

Sound Card Layout
  • Line Out (Speaker) jack - is the location which the speakers or headphones will be connected to get sound out of the sound card
  • Mic (Microphone) jack - connect a microphone to the computer and record your own sound files
  • Line in jack - allows tape or CD players or other audio sources to be recorded by computer
  • MIDI / Game / Joystick port - connect with old type electronic keyboard (organ) or used for joystick / game paddle
Today, several manufacturers whom are beginning to identify each of the above portsby symbols on the back of the card. Below you will find examples of what these symbols mean.
Sound Card connector symbols
Sound Card connector symbols

You may also find that these ports are color-coded, which means the ports on the back will be the same color as the wire that you are connecting to them.
Sound Adapter/Card BrandThere are lots of brands available such as Creative, Asus, AOpen, ADS, CSS, HP, etc. The Creative Labs dominate the market. However, most of the motherboard today comes with onboard sound adapter.
Audio cableYou need to have a cable to connect the rear panel of CD/DVD drive to the sound card in order to listen to the audio CD through computer. This cable is called audio cable. It's used when listen to the audio CD only, the rest of the different types of CD/DVD doesn't need it.
With the audio cable, the songs on the CDs it won't go through the Processor or RAM but works directly from the CD /DVD drives to the sound adapter/card.
Audio cable
Audio cable


Modem
A modem is a device that lets your computer communicate with other computers such as connecting a computer to the Internet.
Computer digital and analog signals
Computer digital and analog signals

The above pictureshelp represent a digital signal and an analog signal. All computer data is stored and transmitted within the computer in digital format 0s and 1s. In order for this data to be transmitted over analog phone lines the data must be transmitted into an analog signal which is the noise you hear when connecting to another computer. Once the other computer receives this signal it will then translate the signal back into its original digital format.
Normally, you need to have a modem to go online. There are several ways to access the Internet include:
  • Dial-up
  • DSL
  • Cable
  • Satellite
A variety of types, models, and speeds of modems is available, which all depends on how you eventually connect your computer to the Internet.
Dial-up modemsThe most common computer modem is known as the dial-up modem. That's because it uses standard phone lines to connect to the Internet and has to dial the phone to connect online. These are the slowest modems, and least expensive. There are 2 types of this kind modem:
1) Internal: Modem would be PCI card that plugged into the PCI slot located on the computer Main board.
2) External: Modem is located outside/externally to the computer. Normally you can found two types of external modem:
  • Serial - connect to the serial port at the rear panel of the computer case.
  • USB - connect to the computer USB ports.
Dial-up modem speeds:Data transmission rates for Internet connections are measured in megabits per second (Mbps) or kilobits per second (Kbps). Those old times the dial-up modems are transmitting 14.4 kbps and most of the modem today are using 56kbps.
Dial-up modem brands: There are lots of different manufacturers, such as Aztech, Artnet, Prolink, etc.
Beyond the dial-up modem are high-end modems for the faster Internet connection. Three types of high-end, faster modems are available: Cable, Digital Subscriber Line (DSL), and satellite.
DSL modems
DSL modemsservices are available in limited areas, usually within a few miles of the service provider office. You need to register with the service provider to get the username and password to setup the account.
You have option to buy different types of external DSL modems:
  • USB - The modem is connected to your computer USB port. The limitation of this kind of modem is that you only can connect to one PC, hence one PC can go online. The modem driver will come together and you need to install it before can use it.
  • Router - A device that connects multiple computers to a single DSL line. Initially, you need to setup the router once and the settings will save into the router itself. Subsequently, you can directly go online if you computer connect to the router (using the network cable).
  • Wireless Router - It is same like the router besides it goes wireless. This means your computer/laptop can go online directly without connecting the cable to the wireless router. For PC, you will need a separate wireless adapter with proper driver installed.
Cable modems
Cable modems service uses a combination of fiber optics and coaxial cable, which are capable of a far larger frequency range than the telephone company can use on their simpler twisted pair wires. Cable modems can go up to 1,500 Kbps or faster but the service isn't available everywhere. Most cable modems are external.
Satellite modems
The satellite modem is a great option for areas where cable or DSL isn't available. However, the setup cost remains high because you need not only the satellite modem but also a satellite dish.
Even though you have a fast modem, consider keeping a dialup modem in your computer. You can use the modem as a backup, and it's always good for sending and receiving faxes with specific software installed.

Network Interface Card

The driver normally comes with the card and provides the software interface between the system.
The PnP (plug and play) network card will be detected automatically by the Windows system, whereas a Non-PnP network card has to be installed manually. Most of the today main board comes with build-in network controller and you just need to install the driver from the main board manufacturerdrivers CD.
Network Interface Card
Network Interface Card

From the above picture, you will notice that the NIC only have one port to connect the network cable. All the network interface card is PCI interface so you just plug the card to your computer PCI slots(any slot) on the motherboard and install the driver.
Why you need NIC?
Simple. To setup a network system as this is another way to make computers talk to each other. A network is actually two or more computers connected using some type of network cable. The computers can share information, access common disk drives, and share printers.
Also, you need this card to connect the computer and router in order to connect to the Internet if you are using the broadband connections.
The Network Cable- Cat 5 or Cat 5e
The following are the physical look of the Cat 5/5e cable (left) as well as the network cable connectors (right). You may see that this cable have different colors but no matter which color, the function are still the same.
Cat 5 network cable
Cat 5 network cable

Cat 5 network cable connector
Cat 5 network cable connector














Flash Drive

The function of USB thumb driveis the same as the hard drive, you can read, write and delete data to/from it. The capacity is smaller and it's more convenient for bring the drive from one place to another.
Flash drivescan be handy for carrying copies of important documents and other files wherever you go. The actual storage media are thumbnail-sized integrated circuits, which come inside a huge variety of packages, size and colors, including pens, pocket-sized cases and thousands of novelty shapes.
To connect a USB pen drive to your computer, simply plug the USB connector on the drive into a USB port, or use a USB cableto connect the drive to the computer.
USB flash drive
USB flash drive

Depending on the operating system installed on your computer, the USB handy drive will start working as soon as you connect them to the computer, but others don't work unless you have already installed the device driveror other software supplied with the device.
With Windows 98 and earlier Windows, you need to install the driver before the pen drive can work. Newer version of Windows (including Me, 2000, XP and Vista) doesn't required you to install flash drivedriver.
Because of this, USB drives can be a convenient way to increase the computer's total storage capacity. It's also very convenience for you to transfer data from one computer to another.

Processor Comparison

"AMD VS Intel Processors Comparison"


Which is better - Intel or AMD Processor?Intel high-end processors out perform AMD but also more expensive!
There is no doubt that both Intel and AMD are great CPU manufacturers. However, if price is not important then Intel is the preferred option even they are more expensive but the performance is better.
The exception to this is when you look at the Intel Celeron processors. AMD Sempron out performs the Intel Celeron and is cheaper in price. Now if you looking to buy a CPU on a small budget then AMD is the way to go.
The following is the comparison chart summary for AMD vs Intel processor
Intel Core i7 950 processor
Intel Core i7 950 processor

So if you are looking at great performance processor, I will recommend an Intel Core i7 Processorafter doing an intensive review.
The following are just few advantages that you can found on the Intel Core i7 processor that further explain the Intel high-end CPUs are better than AMD:
Ultimate smart performanceGet the top-of-the-line processor that delivers the ultimate in smart performance.
Ultimate balance of style and performanceA combination of greater cache size and higher frequencies give you ultimate performance for the toughest tasks.
Intel Turbo Boost TechnologyAutomatically speeds up your processor when your PC needs extra performance.
Intel Hyper-Threading TechnologyEight-way or four-way multitask processing allows each core of your processor to work on two tasks at the same time, delivering the performance you need for smart multitasking.
Delivers big, travels lightGet the ultimate balance of smart performance and style with a sleek new laptop powered by the Intel Core i7 processor. Packed with rich features, including enhanced battery life, it's a stylish mobile superstar that's light enough to carry all day.
Enjoy broadband Internet all over town with 4G WiMAXA PC with an Intel Core processor and 4G WiMAX wireless technology delivers great PC performance with blazing Internet speed that's four times faster than 3G.
However, both AMD and Intel processors support a lot of cross compatible hardware. Sure the CPU and motherboards are platform specific, but you can share memory (RAM), video cards and other peripherals.
To conclude, I would say Intel wins on the high end. AMD wins on the low end. In the middle, it's a toss up. So, if you are on a budget or just a normal user go for AMD.

Discover the Different Types of Intel Processors

The mid-range Pentium processor reliable and suitable for normal day-to-day working as well as home users and the budget Celeron processor are entry-level choices for basic computing.
1.) Intel Core processor
The Intel core processors are preferred by most users now are it has the following advantages:
  • Speed when you need it Your processor automatically gets a boost of performance when your PC needs it with Intel Turbo BoostTechnology.
  • Superb visual performanceEnjoy a stunning visual experience that delivers sharper images, richer color, and lifelike audio and video,with Intel HD Graphics.
  • Broadband Internet on the go Access broadband Internetall over town at speeds four-times faster than 3G with 4G WiMAX wireless technology.
  • Your PC now on your TV Put all of your personal and online content on a big screen with Intel Wireless Display - the easy way to sharelaptop content on your TV.
  • Eliminate the waitStop waiting for your computer to catch up! Intel Hyper-Threading Technology lets you do more tasks at once.
The Intel Core processor is the smarter processors that automatically deliver extra performance whenever you need it. It is available in several performance levels:
  • Intel Core i7 processor (Info and best review on Core i7 CPU here)
Intel Core i7 CPU logo
Intel Core i7 CPU logo

The Core i7 processor no longer has a Front Side Bust (FSB) and it uses Quick Path Interlink (QPI) which measured in gigabytes per second (GB/s). The newest Core i7 also implements a new processor socket called LGA1366 which is incompatible with all earlier processors. The older Core i7 processor still uses the LGA 1156 socket same as Core i5 processor. All Core i7 CPU uses Intel's Hyper-Threading technology to boost performance which allows for 8 processing streams.
  • Intel Core i5 processor (Info and best review on Core i5 CPU here)
Intel Core i5 CPU logo
Intel Core i5 CPU logo

The Core i7 and i5 for socket LGA1156 are the same as a Core i7 1366 processor except that the socket uses a few less pins and the processors lack a little performance. Hence, it's little cheaper compare to Core i7. The Intel Core i5 processor has up to 8MB of Intel Smart Cache and it support Intel Hyper-Threading Technology and Turbo Boost Technology. This will automatically allocates processing power where it's needed most. Whether you are playing games, editing photos or music, this processor can multitask with ease and be more productive than ever.
  • Intel Core i3 processor
Intel Core i3 CPU logo
Intel Core i3 CPU logo

As the first level in Intel's new processor family, the Intel Core i3 processor is the perfect entry point for a fast, responsive PC experience. It uses socket LGA1156 with 4MB Smart Cache and it also features Intel Hyper-Threading Technology, which enables each core of your processor to work on two tasks at the same time, delivering the performance you need for smart multitasking.
  • Intel Core 2 Quad processor
Intel Core 2 Quad logo
Intel Core 2 Quad logo

The Core 2 series still implements a Front Side Bus which ranges from 1066 MHz to 1600 MHz for the quad cores. The L2 Cache for the Core 2 Quad can up to 12 MB. Core 2 Quad uses socket LGA775 and it does not use the Hyper-Threading technology so you are limited to 4 stream processes. This is the first processor socket to implement the pins for the CPU on the motherboard to help reduce the chance to bend pins.
2.) Intel Pentium Dual Core processor
Intel Pentium CPU logo
Intel Pentium CPU logo

The Intel Pentium processor with Intel dual-core technology delivers great desktop performance, low power enhancements, and multitasking for everyday computing.
The Pentium series has 1 MB of L2 Cache and only has a Front Side Bus of a maximum of 1066 MHz and goes as low as 533 MHz. The Pentium Dual Core series does not have Hyper-Threading and have only 2 stream processes. The Pentium series sharesthe same socket as the core 2 series which is LGA775.
3.) Intel Celeron processor
Intel Celeron CPU logo
Intel Celeron CPU logo

Intel Celeron processors provide a lowest cost computing solution for basic computing needs. It ranges in both single and dual cores and has a Front Side Bus (FSB) ranging from 266 MHz to 800 MHz. The Celeron offers a max of 512 kb of L2 Cache. Like the Pentium and Core 2 series it uses the LGA775 socket and does not have Hyper-Threading technology.
Notes:
Intel Turbo Boost Technology maximizes speedfor demanding applications, dynamically accelerating performance to match your workload-more performance when you need it the most.
Intel Hyper-Threading Technology delivers two processing threads per physicalcore for a total of four threads for massive computational throughput. This 4-way multi-task processing allows each core of your processor to work on two tasks at the same time.
Intel HD Graphicsprovides superb visual performance for sharper images, richer color, and life-like video and audio.
Intel Smart Cache is a shared cache dynamically allocated to each processor core, based on workload. This efficient, optimized implementation increases the probability that each core can access data from the fast cache, significantly reducing latency to frequently used data and improving performance. Optimized for industry-leading multi-threaded games.

"The Intel Core i7 Review - Which Core i7 Processor is Most Suitable For You? Find Out Now!"



Before we go for the Intel Core i7 review, it's good to let you know why Intel Core i7 are the best processors out there. Read more on Intel Core i7 processor features.
Whether you're a serious multitasker or a multimedia enthusiast, performance matters. So why limit yourself? Unlock your full potential with the ultimate smart performance of the Intel® Core™ i7 processor.
How to choose a Core i7 processor that best fit your needs?
When selecting a CPU for your computer, always consider your computing needs. The Core i7 are high-end processor that currently are target for high-end users such as gamers, and those that required CPU intensive work such as working with video editing or programs such as AutoCAD, photoshop, etc.
Beside from that, the following are some other factors that you need to take into considerations when getting a new CPU.
  • Price vs. PerformanceIf you are aiming for the best performance, the newer CPUs will be more expensive and the latest or newest CPU will be very expensive. Try to wait sometime after the processor is released and the price will drop dramatically. Average users should not purchase the top-speed CPU on the market. The price difference is not worthy of the performance difference. So when trying to decide what is right for you figure out your budget then decide which processor best fits your price range.


  • Over ClockingIf you are advanced users, then overclocking the CPU is very common. However, it should not be attempted by novice computer users. Overclocking is a way to change the settings to make the CPU run faster than it original speed. All the Intel Core i7 processors can be overclock to run even faster than normal speed.


  • Upgrade PossibilityChoosing motherboard and the type of CPU socket on it is important as you need to get a motherboard that supports higher than the processor and memory (RAM) you are going to choose.
This way in the future it's easy for you when you decide to upgrade processor or RAM to make your computer run faster. The CPU socket type on the motherboard (such as PGA 1366) can still be used when you upgrade to a newer CPU.
Now, Which Intel Core i7 Processor is Worth Your Money?
**Intel Core i7 950 3.06GHz 8MB L3 Cache Processor Review (Desktop LGA 1366 processor socket)**external image ir?t=wwwmsofficetu-20&l=as2&o=1&a=B002A6G3V2
Intel Core i7 950 processor
Intel Core i7 950 processor

Average Customer Rating:
external image 5-stars.gif

(**If you are looking for the best price on this Core i7 950 processor, I have found it to be on Amazon. Click here to check it out**external image ir?t=wwwmsofficetu-20&l=as2&o=1&a=B002A6G3V2)
Pros:
  • Socket LGA1366 allow future upgrade. Three-year limited warranty.
  • Integrated memory controller, supporting Triple Channel DDR3 1066MHz Memory
  • Four 3.06 GHz cores for better multitasking and multithreaded performance.
  • Quick Path Interconnect (replaced Front Side Bus) provides fast data transfer between the processor and chipset.
  • Great performance with reasonable price, easily can overclock the CPU to 4.0GHz or even higher.
Cons:
  • Item can be shipped only within the U.S.
  • Price slightly higher compare to the same range of AMD processor.
As you can see, Intel has completely reinvented their CPU design, removing the older Front Side Bus and replacing it with the new Intel Quick Path Interconnect, delivering up to 6.4 Gigabytes per second.
The new to the Core i7 line is the integrated memory controller, supporting Triple Channel DDR3 Memory allowing for more maximum memory, up to 24GB of RAM on some boards, and faster access times.
Located directly on the CPU die is 256KB per core of L2 cache and 8MB L3 cache shared across all four cores means the CPU can do more without having to access the main memory, further increasing performance.
Deep testing has been carry out and it show the incredible benchmark performance and rock solid overclock ability. With the current prices on this Core i7 950 processor that are below $300, I can't see a better value out there on an Intel chip if anyone plans to overclock.
It's perfect for:
  • Gamers
  • High-end PC Users
  • Those intend to overclock the CPU
**The Intel Core i7 950 3.06GHz 8MB L3 Cache processor is on sale at Amazon now. Click here to check it out.**external image ir?t=wwwmsofficetu-20&l=as2&o=1&a=B002A6G3V2
Now that you've read my Core i7 950 processorreview, it's not hard to see why this CPU is a great choice. Your computing or gaming experience will be change with this outstanding i7 processor.
All things considered, the Core i7 950 processoris a great CPU and I think you will be very pleased with it.
For even more proof, the following are what others had say after purchasing this processor:
So far this Intel processor has provided a flawless performance. The improvements over my Core 2 Quad Q6600 are extremely noticeable, especially in the gaming (first person shooter) arena. I have no doubt the improvement in memory<->processor communication (via a memory controller) contributes significantly to the better gaming performance. When combined with my MSI N460GTX Hawk Talon Attack GeForce GTX 460 video adapter, FPS graphics on games that used to freeze up with my Q6600, are now gorgeous! This may very well be the last processor I ever buy (just joking Intel...just joking). - Carl Johnson
This CPU is reallllllyyyy fast. I never see any of the cores pegged or ever have to wait for the CPU to finish anything. I am always waiting on my bottleneck, which is my hard drive. Not even worth the time to overclock this baby. - B. Haverlock (Orange County, CA)
I got this processor at a great price. I use this computer for AutoCAD so I can't really tell you how it works with games. But it's fast and it's fairly cheap when compared to the newer i7s.- E.W.Bromley "Will" (Crandall, TX)
This is a buy at a good deal since it cut by half. This is the way to go if you want to run a gaming computer. - Stephano
I cannot believe that ALL the user's that purchased this i7 950 processor and reviewed it - give a 5 out of 5 starto this processor. So, this is no doubt that this CPU can really delivered what you want!!
get a price on amazon
get a price on amazon

In case the Core i7 950 processor is still not fast enough for you…
There are several i7 series of processor that you can choose from if you wish to build an extremely fast computer with super great performance.
The following processors have the same great features as the Core i7 950 but with newer and faster processors that are highly recommended:
**Intel Core i7 980X Extreme Edition 3.33GHz 12 MB L3 Cache LGA1366 Desktop Processor**external image ir?t=wwwmsofficetu-20&l=as2&o=1&a=B003922WES
**Intel Core i7 960 3.2GHz Clock Speed 8 MB L3 Cache LGA1366 Desktop Processor**external image ir?t=wwwmsofficetu-20&l=as2&o=1&a=B002KQ5KE8
**You can read more reviews on these processors at Amazon by clicking here.**external image ir?t=wwwmsofficetu-20&l=ur2&o=1


"Intel Core i5 750 2.66GHz 8MB L3 Cache Processor Review (Desktop LGA1156 processor socket)"


Average Customer Rating:
external image 5-stars.gif

(**If you are looking for the best price on this Core i5 750 processor, I have found it to be on Amazon. Click here to check it out**external image ir?t=wwwmsofficetu-20&l=as2&o=1&a=B002KQ5KDY)
Intel Core i5 750 processor
Intel Core i5 750 processor

One of the 'budget' high-end processor that you can find on the market today is the Intel Core i5 750 processor. Made for both gamers and heavy workload computer users, this processor is suitable for various brand of motherboard that support socket LGA1156.
Pros:
  • Integrated memory controller, supporting Two Channel DDR3 1066/1333MHz Memory.
  • Four 2.66 GHz cores for better multitasking and multithreaded performance.
  • Backed by a 3-year warranty.
  • Great performance with reasonable price, easily can overclock the CPU to 3.8GHz or even higher.
Cons:
  • Socket LGA1156 do not allow upgrade to Core i7 processor.
  • Item can be shipped only within the U.S.
Perfect for:
  • Gamers
  • Office and home users
  • Cyber café PCs
  • Heavy-duty or multitask PC users (running program such as AutoCAD, Photoshop, etc)
  • Server PCs (such as web server, database server, etc)
Great features:
  • Come with Intel® Turbo Boost Technology
  • Up to 8 MB of Intel® Smart Cache
  • Intel Virtualization Technology
  • 4 processing threads
**Click here to get a great price on the Intel Core i5 750 on Amazon. They are also offering a Free Shipping deal for this CPU currently.**external image ir?t=wwwmsofficetu-20&l=as2&o=1&a=B002KQ5KDY
Now that you've read my Core i5 750 processorreview, it's not hard to see why this CPU is a great choice. Your computing or gaming experience will be change with this outstanding and reasonable price Core i5 processor.
All things considered, the Core i5 750 processoris a good CPU and I think you will be very pleased with it with the current low price at Amazon.
For even more proof, the following are what others had say after purchasing this processor:
"Love this I5-750. It's fast and cool. It runs under 50C under load in turbo @3.2G. Overclocked to 3.8g with stock heatsink. Convert video and play HDTV with ease. ~ N.Ye (Ashburn, VA USA)"
"Ordered on the night of feb 4th, shipped on the night of feb 5th, delivered to Miami on the 9th with Amazon free Super Saver Shipping. I got it in Trinidad 2 days later. I ordered it the same time with other parts for the computer but they all shipped the day after. The i5 came alone with a weight of 1.20lbs.
I run Windows 7 64 bit and it never chokes with any apps or games and I have not overclocked it yet. If you want a serious gaming system do not spend more on the CPU than this, put the money towards a better graphics card or better SSD. The turbo boost works flawlessly to throttle the CPU instantaneously as necessary. Using the stock cooler I get around 40 degrees celcius when on the net or office apps and depending on how aggressively I set the fan speeds at most it reaches 60 degrees celcius during the day while gaming NFS Shift, Modern Warfare 2, World at War. The CPU never chokes on HD resolutions, AA 2x or 4x on for gaming. The bottle neck for me I think is the GPU and hard drive. Videos run smoothly, there are no freezes or crashes. If I decide to overclock then I will upgrade the stock cooler, the intel stock one is more than adequate for now. It's been a few weeks now with no problems and I am very happy with the build. The pc is not in an air conditioned room so with a/c air you can expect to get slightly lower temps. The temp in the room probably reaches around 30 degrees at peak.
This CPU is amazing value for money, I predict this PC will last me well into the future, and when games get even more intense I can go xfire and get a SSD. ~ Polarized (Miami, Florida United States)"
get a price on amazon
get a price on amazon

**You can read more reviews on these processors at Amazon by clicking here.**external image ir?t=wwwmsofficetu-20&l=as2&o=1&a=B002KQ5KDY
In case the Core i5 750 processor is still not fast enough for you…
There are several i7 series of processor that you can choose from if you wish to build an extremely fast computer with super great performance. But after my review, I found that the Core i7 950 processoris top-notch!