When you buy a new laptop or PC, you sometimes wonder “how long will this purchase last?” To combat this, technology planners use the idea of ”sustainability” to make their investments travel further. However, what does this mean and is it something you should do when buying / building a PC?
Let’s take a look at this term and see if it’s worth considering your next big purchase.
What is the future of your PC?
Imagine you want a new PC to play a whole new game that has been released. You check the recommended specifications and buy a PC with that exact hardware. When the PC arrives, it can play perfectly. Everything looks good, right?
Problems arise when, a year later, the PC hardware begins to show its age. New games aren’t working as well as they could, as the hardware demand for games has increased between the time you bought your PC and the current day.
The proposed way to stop this problem is to “perpetuate”. This involves buying a more powerful PC than the one you want to use it for. For example, the game you want to play requires a minimum of Intel Core i3 CPU and 4 GB of RAM. You may want to buy a new PC with the latest Intel Core i7 and 16 GB of RAM, which will allow you to play the games you want and last for several more years. Of course, it depends on the use you make of your PC and your raw energy needs.
For the office, the rule of thumb is to get the best processor and motherboard you can afford to keep it going for years. These two components are not easily scalable and you often have to change the whole PC once they are out of date. Other parts like RAM and a graphics card are interchangeable and can be easily upgraded over time.
The pros and cons of the sustainability of your PC
All of this sounds good, but sustainability has its pros and cons. It is worth considering all of them before spending a lot on a brand new PC.
Everyone hates a slow PC. This is why you should get a PC with a grade higher than what you need, even if you are only an average user who only uses your PC to browse the web and edit documents. A “future-proof” PC ensures that it can perform most tasks smoothly without hiccups for a few years.
This is especially a good idea if you like to play PC games. As graphics technologies advance, so do the minimum requirements for reading them. By purchasing a PC one (or two) levels above what you need right now, you can ensure that future versions will always be playable on your new PC.
While durability is good for general use, things are starting to look a bit dubious to consumers who want the cutting edge of technology. Indeed, what the “bleeding edge” represents can completely change in the space of a year or two.
For example, let’s say an enthusiast bought a graphics card hoping it would last for years. In one to two years, new graphics cards with more cores, compatibility with a new version of DirectX or physical processors will be released. Then games will come out that will take advantage of this new technology.
Although the passionate card can still play modern games, it is not at best that the game can be. As a result, an enthusiast will want to avoid sustainability and upgrade their PC as new technologies are launched.
Another thing about “sustainability” is the higher cost involved in purchasing the PC. You are now paying a higher price for PC parts with specifications far above what you need. Do you have a budget for this? Does the higher price translate into more work done? You have to do your own calculations to see if it’s worth it.
Is sustainability for you?
If you buy a new PC today, do you want it to last a year, three years, or five years? Instead of thinking about whether you need to keep your PC going, think about how long you want it to last. If you want to play not only the games of today but also those released in a few years, durability can guarantee it. You may need to lower the graphics settings a bit in future games, but it should still be playable.
However, if you are someone who wants to get the most out of their games, sustainability is not such a good idea. You may be investing in technology that will become obsolete in a year or two, so it’s best to buy as much as you want to maximize your graphics settings and gradually upgrade as new technologies are released.
Do you think sustainability is for you? Let us know below.
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