Power Supplies sometime
come with your case and sometimes don't. Ideally you will want to get
a power supply with your case, as buying them separately can be more
expensive. If you have your heart set on a particular case though and
it doesn't have a power supply or your power supply has blown then here
is a guide to buying one.
- Firstly your
power supply should be compatible with your case. ie Micro ATX case
= Micro ATX power supply, ATX case = ATX power supply.
- 300W(Watts) is
a reasonable power supply, if you have an older processor or less
power hungry components then your can probably get away with less,
conversely if you have loaded up with extra hard drives, expensive
graphics cards or lots of Firewire/USB peripherals then you may wish
to go for 100-200W more.
- Don't ever open
up the inside of a power supply there are potentially lethal voltages
inside. Even several minutes after they are powered down, they can
store a charge that could kill you. See preparation
If you want to network
your computer then you have several options.
- Some motherboards
have built in 10/100baseT (electrical ethernet) connectors built in.
- To buy and install
an electrical ethernet card in a spare PCI slot is easy.
- Wireless ethernet
will allow you to create your own home network without having Cat5
cables strung all around your house. They are slightly more expensive
than the electrical cards, but cheaper than having to track you walls
or lift your floor to hide the cabling.
If you cannot connect
directly to the internet through your home network then you are going
to need a modem.There are as usual a number of options:-
- Dial up modem
- how most people connect to the internet. These are very cheap. I
suspect lower rates are almost impossible to buy now, but you probably
want a 56K modem. Just check that it transmits and receives at 56K.
- Cable Modem -
More expensive and uses spare bandwidth on you TV cable connection.
Much faster than dial up, but with additional costs of setting up
the agreement with your cable company.
- DSL/ADSL modem
- allows the use of your current telephone wire to provide a much
bigger bandwidth than Dial up. Larger bandwidth obviously means faster
You have many choices
here ranging from the very cheap to the very expensive. Speaker range
from a single built in speaker in your case to the 6 individual speakers
of a 5.1 Dolby surround system. Some things that are important in speakers:-
- Power:- Do they
have AC power or are they battery powered.
- Wattage:- The
higher the wattage the more powerful the speaker.
- Range: Top quality
speakers produce a range close to or better than that of human hearing
18 Hz - 22KHz
- Controls:- Better
quality speakers will allow you to adjust volume, treble, bass and
dynamic bass boost.
- Number of speakers:-
- 2 speaker
will give stereo
- 3 speakers
will give stereo + Bass bin
- 5 speakers
will give two front, two back & a bass speaker also known
- 6 speakers
will give two front, two back a center speaker and a bass speaker
known as Dolby surround or 5.1