Bob Rankin: Should You Upgrade Your CPU?


By Bob Rankin

Is a CPU Upgrade Right For You?

Upgrading to a faster CPU can be a good way to boost your system’s performance. But there are several factors to research before committing to this relatively expensive upgrade. The actual process of swapping one CPU for another is deceptively simple but prone to costly errors.

A CPU upgrade will not give you a dramatic performance boost in all cases. A modest clock speed increase, say from 2.0 to 2.4 Ghz, will have a barely noticeable effect. Applications which did not use the old CPU’s full power won’t show any improvement with a faster CPU. But CPU-intensive applications, such as video editing, number crunching, and online games, may benefit from a CPU upgrade.

Before you consider an upgrade to your CPU, the first thing to do is determine how large of an upgrade you can perform. Your existing motherboard can accept only a certain range of CPUs, depending on the type of CPU socket that it has. You will need to find the specs of your motherboard to determine what your CPU options are. If you already have the most powerful CPU that your motherboard will support, then you will have to buy and install a new motherboard as well as a new CPU.

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This excerpt is shared with permission from Bob Rankin.


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