Computer upgrades

If you’ve never opened up a computer case in your life then you can pretty much just ignore this post.

I had been running an old WD 250gb SATA HD and an even older Seagate 200gb IDE HD and was starting to run out of room. WD and Seagate both recently came out with new 640gb drives containing two 320gb platters and I picked up the WD drive from Newegg. The higher density means these drives really move and the quick comparison I did with my old WD shows the new one to be almost twice as fast. Reads come in at 110MB/s and the old drive would average out at about 60MB/s. So far Windows seem a lot snappier with the new drive. One thing that surprised me was the old WD was idling 10°C higher than the new drive so it’s even cooler on top of being faster.

I also replaced my burner with a Samsung SATA drive, finally eliminating IDE from my computer. This let me really clean up my cabling. My old Thermaltake PSU that has served me well for the past 4 years only had 2 SATA power connectors so I replaced it with a new Corsair 450w PSU I had picked up on eBay from a seller who didn’t know what he had ($70 PSU for about $25, nice). I also put in an Audigy 2 ZS sound card I got from Creative on clearance for $20. Great card, less noise than the onboard and the mic input seems to handle my headset mic better.

All in all a pretty good upgrade. Brings my specs up to the following:

  • Antec P180 case
  • Corsair 450w PSU
  • 2GB OCZ Reaper memory
  • Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3L mobo
  • Intel Dual Core E2180
  • ATI Radeon 3870
  • WD 640gb and 250gb SATA hard drives
  • Audigy 2 ZS
  • Samsung SATA Burner

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