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Navigating the challenge of buying a new computer

By Team DeBug

With many people working from home these days, there is an increased need for connection to the online workplace. Video conference programs like Zoom effectively allow companies to communicate right from their homes. But is your computer capable of video conferencing?

Zoom requires at minimum a single-core 1Ghz or higher processor (chips that read and execute the Central Processing Unit’s (CPU) instructions for adding or moving data). Yet, dual-core 2Ghz or higher processors are recommended. For detailed bandwidth recommendations for high quality video on Zoom, users can go to https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/201362023-System-requirements-for-Windows-macOS-and-Linux. An alternative to Zoom is Microsoft Teams (https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-365/microsoft-teams/video-conferencing) . This program has similar system requirements and recommends Random Access Memory (RAM, stores computer’s working data) of 4.0 GB or higher.

If you’re finding your computer either is having trouble running video conference programs or can’t run them at all, there are few options to consider. Sometimes a simple computer tune-up is sufficient but check with a local tech expert to see what the best fit for you is.

Yet, sometimes newer is better. When upgrading a computer’s hardware, it may lead to compatibility issues for the rest of its parts. So, you might want to consider a new device.

If you’re buying a new computer, what should you be looking for? Well, it really depends on what you’re asking the computer to do. Zoom advises the best option for video conferencing is a quad-core processor.

If single-core processors serve as a one-man crews, quad-core processors are teams of workers ensuring the CPU’s commands are carried out at lightning-fast speeds. Each quad-core chip is equipped with four separate units tasked with running computer programs. That’s why these processing units are popular with gamers, but these chips can also be helpful in the workplace.

With education transitioning closer to the digital world, it might be a good call to buy computers with these processors for students. Many classes mean a lot of homework assignments. Ensure you have a computer with reliable and capable RAM. This helps for a smoother computer experience overall. Keeping this in mind, quad-core processors aren’t necessarily always the right choice because they don’t always equate to faster processing speeds.

Regardless of how many units are used to carry out orders, they all share the same memory and data path to the motherboard. A fast and dependable computer requires a group effort among all its components. If one processing unit is struggling, the entire team must slow down to adjust. Buy computers with a solid graphics card, RAM and CPU that are compatible with the systems you’re asking it to run.

Buying the latest and greatest might not be necessary. To ensure you’re making the right choice, ask your tech expert for help with understanding all your options.