Nov 122014
 

The main family PC which happens to be the central hub for all our needs (email, gaming, video and photo editing) was built way back in 2009.

It had an Intel i7 (quad core) clocked at 2.6Ghz and sported a Nvidia GTX260 graphics card.

You know it’s beginning to age when you six year old daughter tells you it takes too long to boot. So I decided to replace the system drive with an SSD and the graphics card with a more modern version.Crucial have released a range of home user SSD called the MX100 which has good read/write performance. I also used it as an excuse that the system drive was due a replacement having spun up for the last 5 years.  I purchased the 512Gb SSD for around £150 and used the free Easus Partition Manager to copy the system drive across to the SSD. The data transfer was painless and took about two and a half hours to complete.

WOW! Bootup time has dropped from +3 minutes to under 20 seconds. Applications such as office apps start in under one second. Considering my motherboard is only SATA 1 ports so half the speed of the latest SATA protocol, I’m extremely happy with this boost in performance.

I don’t play too many games, just Skyrim, World of Tanks and Elite Dangerous (beta). Although the GTX260 can handle these games in medium quality it sounds like a jet engine so I upgraded to a Nvidia GTX760. I’m not one to spend huge amounts of money on a GPU but an upgrade to whatever is available for £150 normally does the trick.

Now I can play all those games in Full HD at max quality and still keep well above 30fps. It’s so quiet too. Another good upgrade.

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