Upgrades to get the most out of your gaming PC

If your gaming computer is running slowly, has long load times, shows screen tearing, lag, or other warning signs, your hardware’s likely to blame.

If it's been a while since you bought a new computer or upgraded the components, it might be time to take a look at what's available now and what could improve your gaming experience.

How long does a gaming PC last?

If you haven’t upgraded any of your gaming PC’s hardware or components, it should last for two to four years. After that, you’ll likely start to see a significant drop in performance. Why? One reason is that newer games demand more graphics, memory, and storage, making it harder for older hardware to run them.

Follow these steps for the best gaming PC upgrades to get the most out of your hardware:

Step 1: Install more RAM

The first gaming PC upgrade to consider is increasing or replacing your computer memory (RAM). RAM temporarily holds data that is currently being used by computer applications, with games using it to store textures and maps

Most factory-built computers have slots to add more memory modules. If there isn’t room for more modules, you can replace existing memory with larger-capacity modules.

The Crucial® System Selector or System Scanner can tell you which memory modules are compatible with your computer.

install memory modules

Step 2: Increase your storage

If your current storage drive is full or you're experiencing freezing or hangups, then it's time to get a faster one with more capacity. And if you're still using a hard disk drive (HDD), this is the perfect time to move up to a solid state drive (SSD).

SSDs start up faster and are more reliable and durable than HDDs. When comparing SSDs to HDDs for gaming, SSDs also run at a higher transfer speed, allowing the whole system to run more . You’ll be pleased to know that installing an SSD is simple and can be completed with just a few steps.

The Crucial® System Selector or System Scanner can tell you which SSDs are compatible with your computer.

upgrade storage

Step 3: Upgrade your graphics card

If you're having trouble with lag, freezing graphics, or screen tearing, consider upgrading your graphics card.

Unless a computer is built specifically for gaming, manufacturers will frequently install a low-end graphics card. If the rest of your computer is functioning well, a graphics card upgrade can really improve your gaming experience.

upgrade graphics card

Step 4: Improve your processor

Although upgrading your processor (CPU) can improve the efficiency of your computer, it can be quite involved.

You need to make sure that your motherboard and memory are compatible with the new processor, or you will need to replace everything at the same time. Also, check that your current cooling system will accommodate the upgraded CPU.

To determine if a processor upgrade will help your computer, there are a variety of third-party benchmark tests you can run. If these report that your CPU is underpowered, it may be easier (and cheaper!) to get a completely new system instead.

Upgrade the processor

Step 5: Boost your peripherals

Another way to give your gaming PC a boost is to upgrade your peripherals. If you’re using an older monitor, a new one can improve the graphic display of your favorite games.

A gaming mouse and keyboard can make a big difference in your play as well. If you’re using a standard mouse and keyboard, upgrading to gaming-specific tools can enhance your play.

It’s not hard to upgrade some of your computer hardware, and it can make a big difference in the speed and responsiveness of your system.

Upgrade the peripherals

If you’re looking for the best upgrades for your gaming PC, Crucial has a wide range of memory and SSDs to suit all needs. Take a look at our products section and upgrade your PC hardware with the memory and storage experts.

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