A while back, we put together a budget-priced computer review that’s meant to be a window into the units’ power classes for average users. In daily use, the Battle Station includes three screens and multitasks multiple programs, even during games. In this kind of usage, the 16 gigabytes of central memory starts to become a bit of a bottleneck in terms of performance. When playing on a screen with 1080p resolution, 16 gigabytes of relatively fast memory is still an ample amount, but for more versatile use, doubling that amount of memory is being recommended today.
Central memory is relatively cheap these days. In addition, it is so easy to replace that you can avoid the operation being performed now, even if the thumb is located in the middle of that famous palm.
To access the inside of a computer, the machine must first be turned off. Normally, after turning off, for example via Windows, you should click the power switch on the back of the machine to turn the device off completely. Finally, it’s good to take at least the power strip out of the back panel, but if you want to handle the computer more freely, it’s good to disconnect the other wires as well, just to be sure.
After disconnecting the wires, the side panel of the case opens. In most machines, opening the left panel gives access to the components themselves, and removing the right panel gives access to the swing. Before touching components, it is a good idea to ground yourself in case of possible static electricity. This can be done by touching the metal surface. Current components are fairly well shielded, but static electricity can still cause problems with parts when discharged.
In most motherboards, memory cards are installed in the mounting slot to the right of the processor and processor fan, but there are exceptions. Gaming motherboards typically have slots for four memory sticks, but for example MATX or Mini-ITX sized boards often only have two slots.
When adding or updating memory, it’s always a good idea to buy components in pairs. Modern processors and memory controllers on motherboards are designed to use two or more modules at the same time, so the same amount of memory with one combo is practically always lost in the performance of two. You shouldn’t mix memories together, but in general, if you want the best results, you should only use similar parts from the same manufacturer.
The old memory units are removed from the motherboard by clicking the upper retaining clip open. The clip is usually designed in such a way that when you press on it, the comb pops out automatically, after which it is remarkably easy to remove.
The new combs are installed on the motherboard in place of the old ones. However, it’s good to check the recommended mounting slots in the motherboard instructions. Memory slots that work in link to each other are usually not next to each other, but for example, on a four-slot motherboard, optimal performance is extracted by installing a comb in every other slot. By installing the parts in the right places, it is guaranteed that the motherboard and processor know how to use all the power they can put to use. The parts are pressed onto the motherboard so that they clearly click into place. A clear click and a firm attachment of the parts indicate a successful installation. You don’t want to use a lot of force, so if the parts don’t seem to engage at all, it’s a good idea to check that the comb is installing correctly.
When the combs finally stop, the wires can be put back in place and the machine restarted. However, in general it is not acceptable to close the side panel unless you are sure that everything is working as it should!
If the machine starts up normally, you can check the memory settings in the Basic BIOS settings. If the operating system doesn’t start or the motherboard emits a beep, check that the combs are definitely clicked all the way in.
The BIOS is usually opened by pressing the Del, F12 or F5 key when the computer starts up. With the help of the software the characteristics of the machine can be adjusted more precisely, and through this it is also possible to make the parts of the machine more efficient, for example by increasing the power supply. Tuning, however, always has its risks: by adjusting ready-made settings of machine parts, it is even possible to render the entire computer unusable.
Fortunately, increasing the memory clock frequency for XMP and DOCP profiles, among other things, is easy and practically risk-free. Therefore the manufacturer has already pre-defined a type of overclocking profile for the card, which can be selected for use directly in the BIOS pull-up menu. However, not all motherboards have this feature, so the only option is to run the memory at slower clock frequencies or adjust them manually.
Normal start-up of the machine is ensured even after the new profiles are applied. After that, it’s finally safe to add the side panels and congratulate yourself on a successful upgrade project.
In association with Kingston:
Kingston, maker of the memory chips used in this article, points out a key principle for them: In the current cost-of-living crisis affecting us all, prices are rising. For many people, a new computer is a luxury they simply cannot afford. Therefore, updating an old machine is often a more than reasonable solution.
The extra 16 gigabytes of memory used in this article will soon find a home in a familiar relative’s first computer.
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