Are you a parent of a die-hard gamer? or maybe you’ve dabbled in playing Fortnite or Call of Duty on a console and fancy kicking it up a notch? But when you’ve attempted to purchase a Gaming PC your brain becomes lost in the sea of technical jargon and component names; it’s as if someone has changed the language on your browser.
Not to worry, we’ve had thousands of customers who at one time or another was in the same position as you, and our fantastic team has helped them not only buy their dream PC but also show them what to look for next time they upgrade their system. And that’s exactly what we’re going to do today.
In this post we will break down all the technical terms of the key components in a PC, what model numbers and storage sizes mean and get you ready to build a Gaming system that will last you until NVIDIA’s 50 Series (I promise that will make sense once you’ve finished).
Let’s Bust Some Jargon
The critical components in a gaming PC are the CPU, GPU, RAM, and Storage; once you understand how to pick these correctly using our configuration tool, all the other parts of a Gaming PC practically pick themselves.
The Central Processing Unit or CPU is the brain of the PC; sending and retrieving data from the other components. The two big names in CPUs are Intel and AMD, or in the gaming community Team Blue or Team Red.
To the normal world, Intel is probably the more respected brand name out of the two and it use to be to gamers, but over the last 5 years, AMD Ryzen (AMD’s CPU brand) has risen through the ranks and earned itself a well deserve seat at the CPU table. Just like Intel’s Core series, i3, i5, i7 & i9, Ryzen also has a number of generations that each has four tiers, Ryzen 3, 5, 7, and 9.
Are you with me so far? Right, now let’s up the ante by diving into the model names.
Breaking the code on Intel and AMD Ryzen Model names
|Section||Definition||Examples||Best Intel Model For Gaming||Best AMD Model For Gaming|
|Brand||Aforementioned, AMD's CPU brand is Ryzen. Intel, however, has an extensive and ever-growing selection of branded CPUs, all designed to meet a variety of needs.||Intel: Core, Xeon, Pentium, Celeron & Atom AMD: Ryzen||Core||Ryzen|
The Modifiers identify the CPU model’s price and performance. In short, the higher the number, the more performance power the CPU has.
|Generation||Both AMD and Intel release a new generation every 1-2 years. Currently the most popular generations on the market, especially for gamers, are Intel 12th Gen and AMD Ryzen 5000 Series||10th Gen, 11th Gen, 12th Gen or Ryzen 3000-Series, 5000-Series||Always the latest generation||Always the latest generation|
|SKU Numeric Digits||This is the product SKU number. The higher a SKU is, the more features it has. For example, a i7 10-700K will be better than a i5 10-600K, but a i5 10-600k will better than an i7 8-700K as it's a newer generation.||Intel i9-12900K or AMD Ryzen 7 5700G||i7-12700K||Ryzen 7 5700G|
|Product Line Suffix||These letters highlight what makes that CPU different from other CPUs within their range and model.||Any||X|
|Number of Cores||Different computing tasks take different things to work. If you want to run multiple apps at once or more resource-intensive programs, your device needs multiple CPU cores.||8 - 16 Core||8 - 16 Core|
Making head or tail of Graphics Cards
A good graphics card is the most effective way to get an edge in gaming. It’s role in a PC is to display images, scenes and animations as quickly as possible to your gaming monitor, and with the complexity of today’s story lines, graphics and features most modern games rely heavily upon generating power from graphics cards to make gameplay happen!
Now you understand the significance of a graphics card to a gamer, it’s time to choose the right one for your system.
The Guru of the Graphic Cards
Just like CPUs, there are two big players in graphics cards; the first and probably most eminent in the gaming world is NVIDIA (pronounced N-VID-I-A). The Second, is AMD’s renowned Graphics brand, Radeon RX.
Now we understand the key characters, let’s dive into the good stuff.
Decrypting The Graphics Card Models
|Section||Definition||Examples||Best NVIDIA Model For Gaming||Best AMD Model For Gaming|
|Manufacturer||Although both Nvidia and AMD make graphics cards, they actually focus on making the chips that are inserted into graphics cards and sell these chips to manufacturers who make the cards we place into our PCs.||ASUS, MSI, Gigabyte||MSI||MSI|
|Chip Range||Nvidia GeForce GTX: is the range before the current RTX range. The chip was launched in 2009, and its final generation (16 Series) was the first chip to handle 4k gaming. Although still on the market for lower-end Gaming PCs, we'd recommend investing in a GeForce RTX card.||GeForce® GTX 1660 SUPER 6GB, MSI GeForce GTX 1050Ti 4GB||GeForce® GTX 1660 SUPER 6GB|
|Nvidia GeForce RTX: The latest generation of chips from NVIDIA, made with the 2nd generation of their infamous chip architecture with new RT Cores, Tensor Cores, and streaming multiprocessors for the most realistic ray-traced graphics and cutting-edge AI features.||GeForce® RTX 3060 12GB, MSI GeForce® RTX 2080 8GB, MSI GeForce® RTX 3080 10GB||MSI GeForce® RTX 3080 10GB|
|AMD Radeon RX: The latest generation of chips from AMD Radeon, made with their RDNA™ 2 architecture and like GeForce RTX includes Ray tracing capabilities.||MSI Radeon RX 6600 8GB,AMD Radeon RX 6600 XT 8GB||AMD Radeon RX 6600 XT 8GB|
|Generation||Nvidia GeForce RTX: NVIDIA release a new generation of chips every 12-18 months. The current generations on the gaming market are 16th Series, 20 Series and the newest 30 Series— with rumours of 40 series released in 2022. And on that logic, we could predict a 50 series by 2025 (I told you I'd get back to that).||16th Series, 20 Series and 30 Series||Always the latest generation|
|AMD Radeon RX: Under the RDNA architecture, AMD has released two generations over the last three years, the RX 5000 Series and the RX 6000 series. We recommend investing in the 6000 series as it features Smart Access Memory, which means if you pair your AMD graphics card with an AMD Ryzen CPU, the two will communicate and work together to ensure you get the best performance for your PC.||RX 5000 Series, RX 6000 series||Always the latest generation|
|Model||Nvidia GeForce RTX: The last two numbers represent the chips model number and reflects the price and performance level of the card —the lower the number the lower the performance and price. See examples for order.||3060, 3060Ti, 3070, 3070Ti, 3080, 3080Ti, 3090||GeForce RTX 3080|
|AMD Radeon RX: The last three numbers represent the chips model number and reflects the price and performance level of the card —the lower the number the lower the performance and price. See examples for order.||RX 6600, RX 6600XT, RX 6700, RX 6700XT, RX 6800, RX 6800XT, RX 6900XT||AMD Radeon RX 6600 XT 8GB|
|Size of Card||Defines how much gigabytes of Video Ram (VRAM) the graphics card can store. This is different from Memory RAM (see below).||4GB, 8GB, 10GB, 12GB, 16GB||Between 8GB-12GB|
Last but not least – Memory and Storage
Although not as crucial as your CPU and Graphics card, your memory and storage is still an important ingredient in the Gaming PC gourmet recipe.
So, let us begin.
What’s the difference between Memory and Storage?
Memory: or RAM, stores data short-term basis. The more memory you have the more applications you can run at the same time.
Storage: stores data on a long term basis such as files, images, games etc.
A good way to think of it Memory stores your data whilst you’re using your PC, Storage stores data when you’ve switch it off.
|Brand||The manufacturer that makes PC RAM.||Corsair, Kingston Fury|
|Ram Range||The manufacture range of RAM.||Corsair Vengeance LPX, Corsair Vengeance Pro RGB, Kingston Fury Beast RGB|
|Size||How much gigabytes your RAM has to store short term data.||16GB|
|Type of Memory||The generation of technology behind the RAM.||DDR4 or DDR5|
|Speed||How quickly your RAM can store memory.||At least 3200mhz|
There are two types of storage Hard Disk Drive (HDD) and a Solid State Drive (SDD), with most Gaming PCs including a combination of both. A HDD is a device that stores data on a mechanical platter. A SSD is a newer, faster device that stores data on memory chips.
|1TB Seagate BarraCuda SATA-III 6.0Gb/s 7200RPM Hard Drive|
|1TB Samsung 970 EVO Plus M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD - 3500MB/s Read & 3300MB/s|
|1TB WD Black SN750 M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD - 3100MB/s Read & 1600MB/s Write|
|1TB ADATA XPG SX8200 Pro M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD - 3500MB/s Read & 3000MB/s|
|1TB Intel 670P M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD - 3500MB/s Read & 2500MB/s Write|
|2TB Seagate Firecuda 510 M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD|
Welcome to The World of Gaming PC
Congratulations! You now know the basics of building a great Gaming PC, now it’s time to put your newfound knowledge to the test by building a PC. Don’t feel like you’re ready? Not to worry, our fantastic service team are just a phone call away and are ready to help you build your dream Gaming PC.
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