What’s a CPU?

brain

If you said it’s the big tower unit that takes up loads of space under your desk, you’d be wrong.

The CPU (Central Processing Unit), is actually a chip inside your computer that acts like the brain of your system.

Opting of the right CPU will determine how many years use you can get out of your computer, how long it takes to do things (such as open applications), and how much power it consumes.

So, all in all, it’s a pretty important chip.

Choosing the right CPU

Finding the right CPU for your needs can be rather challenging. Different ones tend to be identified by a string of meaningless numbers (or at least they appear meaningless to the vast majority of us).

So to help you out, here are a few of the basics you need to know.

1. Frequency

This number (e.g. 2.2GHz) relates to the chip’s speed. In lay terms, the higher the number, the faster the speed – and that’s good.

2. Cores

Today, CPUs tend to have more than one core. These enable your computer to carry out multiple tasks simultaneously. So for many people, a multi-core processor is the way to go.

3. Brand

As with most things in life, there are brands out there that are perceived to be better than others. Most desktops are powered by either AMD or Intel. Although one is not inherently better than the other, it’s fair to say that Intel has the lead at the moment.

These 3 terms should not be reviewed in isolation as they will all have a bearing on what you choose.

The CPU you go for will ultimately depend on how you use your computer. But it’s always best to think ahead – just because you don’t stream films at the moment doesn’t mean you won’t in the future. So it’s best to go for the best processor you can afford.

Author: MPM Computer Consultancy provides IT Services, Support and Training to sole traders and small businesses in Ipswich. Bury St Edmunds and surrounding villages.