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Chapter 32. Deciding to Upgrade

PC manufacturers sometimes appear to be releasing new models every quarter, if not more often. It's no wonder PC users are confused and more than a bit apprehensive each time they go shopping for a new PC. The intense competition of the hot PC market is both a blessing and a curse for users. If you've been watching PC prices nose-dive, you are already aware of the consumer blessing this competition has produced. Users appear to be cursed, however, by being forced to play the “wait-and-see” game: “If I wait just a little longer before I purchase, I can get a faster, more powerful PC and pay less for it.”

You do have an alternative to the wait-and-see game. Despite the downward trend of PC prices, many users are opting instead to upgrade portions of their existing PC rather than purchase an entirely new PC. Although upgrading might not exactly match the performance of a new PC, selective upgrading of certain key components in your PC can substantially improve performance in the areas that matter most to you, depending on how you use your PC. In the previous part of this book, network users learned the special upgrade considerations they face; for the next few chapters, all computer users can utilize the upgrade information as these upgrades apply universally.


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