If you’re looking to improve your CPU performance, whether for a gaming computer, workstation or any other device, there are two general methods available. The first involves improving the efficiency of your architecture; the second involves increasing TDP, or Thermal Design Power, which speaks to the power consumption your machine takes up and the maximum load it can bear during standard operations.
At Walter , we’re proud to offer a huge range of limited edition gaming computers, laptops, workstations and many other CPU elements. We’ve assisted clients with both of the above upgrade areas, and we’ll happily do the same for you.
One major factor that plays a role in the second approach, increasing TDP, is heat created, and therefore the cooling required to prevent overheating and maintain quality operations. Generally speaking, you have two options here: Liquid cooling and air cooling. What are each of these, what are their pros and cons, and which is better for your setup? Here’s a primer.
Liquid CPU Cooling Basics, Pros and Cons Liquid coolers rely on a pump connected to another component like an AIO or closed loop water-cooling system. The pump then circulates a set of coolant through the system, and after going back to the radiator through some copper cold plates, it’s pushed out into another tank where it’s then recirculated for reuse in the same process.
Liquid systems are generally the best option for high-end enthusiasts and gamers, as they can handle insane amounts of power. But if you’re planning on using a liquid cooling system, here’s a bit more info on its parts and various templates:
Radiator: The radiator is where your CPU’s heat is dissipated from the coolant into air. Radiators come in a variety of sizes, from 120mm to 480mm.
AIO: The All-in-One liquid cooler is your best bet if you’re looking for a quick and easy cooling solution. A good quality AIO will easily handle an overclocked CPU and provide optimal performance without much hassle (no DIY required). It’s also much easier to maintain and clean.
Closed Loop Water Cooling: This system is a bit more advanced than the AIO because it requires you to put together your own kit, but it also does a better job at cooling components in comparison to an AIO. The loop (which you build) runs coolant through copper tubing which connects to a water block that in turn cools the CPU. Another advantage is that you can add extra components like video cards and chipset blocks to be cooled effectively.
The following are benefits of using a liquid cooling system.
In addition, certain liquid coolers — those that use custom loops, specifically — will require some detailed maintenance, including annual refilling and regular monitoring for leaks.
Air CPU Cooling Basics, Pros and Cons Air CPU cooling relies on fans to circulate cooler air from the outside over your machine. There are two general formats for air CPU cooling: Direct fans and indirect fans.
A direct fan blows cooler air directly over your components. This, however, has its drawbacks, because it can cause overheating in certain parts of the machine due to unequal distribution or too much pressure being exerted on the components.
An indirect fan, on the other hand, circulates air by placing a fan at an angle away from your computer. The upside of this is that it can serve a more diverse purpose and cool various parts of your system without causing too much harm to any individual component. However, it has its drawbacks as well: namely, if you have it installed at a height higher than their target area, it can potentially push hot air into your case.
General benefits of air cooling systems include:
In addition, air coolers are known to be significantly louder than their liquid cooling counterparts. This is because they rely on heat sync fans to pull heat form the CPU, plus case fans to remove this heat from the area, both of which naturally lead to noisier operations.
For more on how to choose between liquid and air cooling format for your computer, or to learn about any of our gaming computers, laptops or other services, speak to the staff at Walter PC Gaming today.
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Do you know what your computer power supply is? Many people don’t. A power supply unit (PSU) converts AC to DC electricity for use in a PC, and its wattage is the measure of how much total electrical power it can continuously produce.
At Walter, we’re proud to offer a wide range of computing products, from desktops and laptops to custom gaming computers, workstations and many other options. Along with these services, we’re happy to assist our clients with all their power and PSU needs, ensuring their devices will be optimally-powered for all their potential needs.
There are three types of computer power – modular, semi-modular, and non-modular – and they each have their own benefits and downfalls. Let’s take a look at them now to help you understand how each of them works.
Non Modular Power Supply Non-modular power supplies do not have any cables that can be detached and swapped for other cables. This means that all cables are permanently attached, which is the most restrictive of all three options. One of the benefits to this is that it can be smaller than modular or semi-modular power supplies, which saves valuable space in your case or area.
The main downside to this type of PSU is how inflexible they are in terms of customizing your build. Non modular supplies are often used for those who have a limited budget for their power, but they’re not ideal for higher-value operations because their cables can gather dust and negatively impact airflow inside the unit.
Semi-Modular Power Supply Semi-modular power supplies are a step up from non-modular as they offer a more modular experience. However, they still requires you to purchase cables separately and can be expensive for people on a tight budget. They’re also not as compact as the non-modular option and are often slightly bulkier than they need to be.
The benefit of a semi-modular power source is that, as the name suggests, you can remove and replace cables on your own. This allows you to customize many aspects of your build more easily. You won’t be stuck with extra wires taking up space inside your computer case or other areas throughout it, and this in turn allows you to save money in certain cable and setup areas.
However, these power supplies are still restrictive in other areas. This is why they’re not the best option for high-performance builds. Since you can’t upgrade certain internal components like graphics cards and motherboards, you’ll need to buy new cables if your build changes at all throughout its lifespan.
Fully Modular Power Supply The final option in the list of computer power supply types is the fully modular power supply. These are a great option for new builders, as they allow you to optimize your build on an individual level. This includes adding or changing cables to fit your needs.
These power supplies also provide excellent performance, which means they’re a good option for high-performance builds that need some extra juice. They have the best airflow of any of the choices we’ve gone over here, largely due to improved cable management flexibility and extra sockets. Because of this, there will be less risk of dust buildup within the case, plus lower temperatures and components that work optimally.
With these options, you have the freedom to change many aspects of your build and customize it in many ways without worrying about whether it’ll be restricted by any limitations that come with non-modular or semi-modular options.
There are downsides to this type of PSU though: It’s expensive and can’t always be easily installed in smaller cases. This doesn’t mean that the semi-modular or non-modular options will fit in every case, but fully modular PSUs are often larger than they need to be, which means you can get into trouble when trying to install them in smaller cases.
Making Your Selection The key thing to keep in mind with your PSU selection is how much you’re willing to spend on it. While a fully modular power supply will offer you more in terms of customizing your build, it’ll cost you much more money than the other options.
Here are a couple of the other factors that should play a role here: