CCL Computers PC Buying Guide

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This guide should hopefully help with deciding on which computer is best for you. We sell systems across a wide range of specifications that will fill various requirements.

Home or business system

Systems in the home or business categories tend to be towards the lower end of available computer hardware. Mostly, this is due to how modern computers are very efficient even without going towards the high end. Programs like Microsoft Office or day to day tasks like email, web browsing or watching videos online all require very little from the hardware that they are running on, so more basic systems with a dual core processor and four to eight gigabytes of memory are more than suitable. Most of these computers will not come with a dedicated graphics card fitted, as the processor’s integrated graphics are more than capable of everything required of them.

Media or home theatre system

These systems are typically similar in terms of performance to general home systems but are designed around smaller cases to be able to fit into standard TV cabinets or stands without looking out of place.

Gaming system

PCs for gaming are by far our most popular category, and one that has the biggest amount of choice. It’s important to remember that unlike games consoles, not every game will play on every system. PC games will all list system requirements, usually stating the minimum and recommended level of hardware in the computer. Trying to play a game on a computer lower than this will result in poor performance or unplayable games. The system requirements for each game can be found on the store page from your choice of online store or service (Steam, Origin, Green Man Gaming etc) or on the packaging of any retail boxed games.
 
As a general rule, casual games tend to have lower requirements. Games such as Minecraft or the Sims can run on more basic systems without issue, and if these are the only games that will be played then our lower end gaming computers would be suitable. Many of these systems will use an AMD APU with integrated graphics, and not require a dedicated graphics card.
 
At the other end of the spectrum, you have the so called hardcore games. These will tend to be the big blockbuster releases and typically are aimed at older gamers. Titles like the Call of Duty or Assassins Creed series for example will fall into this category. These games feature much more detailed graphics that require significantly more powerful hardware to run them well, and for these kind of games you’re generally going to want a quad core processor, eight gigabytes of RAM and a dedicated graphics card.
 
Additionally, many players will now want to record their gameplay to stream online. It’s worth taking into account if this is a requirement when buying a PC, as a general rule of thumb going for a computer a bit higher in spec than the games being played requires will mean that you can record or stream without impacting game performance.

System recommendations based on popular games

Games such as Minecraft, League of Legends or DOTA 2 will all run fine on more basic systems, a dual core AMD APU, 4GB memory and the integrated APU graphics will be fine here.
 
Going up a little in spec, games like CounterStrike: Global Operations, World of Warcraft, World of Tanks or Grand Theft Auto V will run fine on quad core systems. Again the AMD APU processors with the integrated graphics will be fine, though you may see an increase in performance with some games if you choose to have a graphics card as well. Four to eight gigabytes of memory would be common for these systems.
 
Finally more demanding games, such as Call of Duty Black Ops 3, Battlefield 4, Metal Gear Solid V or Assassins Creed Syndicate will want at least a high end AMD quad core processor or Intel i5 to run well. Eight gigabytes of memory will be needed and a graphics card with a minimum of 2GB of memory, such as a GeForce GTX 750 Ti or above would be needed to handle the advanced visuals these games display.
 
If you need any further help with choosing a system, you can send us a message or contact our PC sales team directly on 01274 471210

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