Can You Upgrade A Prebuilt PC? Understanding Computers

A prebuilt computer is a complete computer system. Popular manufacturers mostly assemble prebuilt PCs like HP and Dell. 

The manufacturers use reliable and well-balanced hardware configurations when making them. 

Prebuilt computers are always produced in large quantities, and you can buy them from various shops. The prebuilt PCs come as ready to use from the box. 

On the downside, many prebuilt computers are not as powerful and become obsolete so quickly. Any monumental leap in the processing power will push a whole generation of these PCs into the obsolete bin. 

With the production of robust and newest hardware, it’s upon the owner of the prebuilt PC to incrementally upgrade various components. 

This is the only way your computer will keep the edge on the newest hardware requirements by most games and videos. So, let’s get back to the question. 

Can You Upgrade a Prebuilt PC? 

Yes, the upgrade you make depends on the functions you want your prebuilt computer to do. The upgrade can be as simple as installing a new graphic card to switching out a power supply.

Upgrading your prebuilt PC will surely give you a considerable performance boost. Your computer will have better processing, visual, and storage capabilities. 

The Main Components Of A Computer

The computer is much more than just playing games and watching videos. Whether it’s a gaming or home PC, five major components make the typical computer. 

To make an upgrade to your computer, you need to know the various parts. Here are the major components of a computer. 

1. Motherboard

The motherboard is an essential part of the computer. It harbors the other components of the computer, which also communicate through it. 

These components include things like the video card, built-in chipset, and many more. In addition, the input and output devices like the keyboard, speakers, and mouse get plugged in it. 

2. Graphics Processing Unit (GPU)

The GPU is the component that excites gamers most. It’s pretty common to hear gamers obsess about the power of the newest Graphics Processing Unit. 

The GPU is responsible for generating high-end visuals found in various video games. In addition, a great GPU is important to professional photographers and graphic designers. 

They use resource-intensive software to produce high-quality images and graphics. Note, the graphic cards communicate directly with the display monitor.

The quality of the monitor should equal that of the GPU. Meaning a $1000 cannot be of importance if connected to a low-end display monitor. 

3. Random Access Memory

The RAM is also referred to as volatile memory. It stores all the data of programs and processes that are frequently accessed from the computer. 

It’s also known as volatile memory because the data gets erased each time the computer restarts. It also helps games and programs to startup and close quickly.

4. Central Processing Unit (CPU)

It’s the brain of a computer. It has a direct plug connection with the motherboard and communicates all components of the computer. 

When coding, the CPU breaks down all code information to a language the processor can understand. The codes may be written in different languages such as java, python, or C++. 

It fetches information, decodes, and executes it. The CPU handles all the computer processes. 

5. Storage

It stores all computer data. Modern computers either use a Solid State Drive (SSD) or the Hard Disk Drive (HDD). 

The SDDs are faster because they do not have any moving parts, such as the mechanical arm. The function of the mechanical arm is always to locate data on the disk physically. 

On the contrary, the HDDs made of an actual disk rely on the mechanical arm to find their data. This makes them slow but cheaper. The HDDs are slowly becoming obsolete.

How To Upgrade A Prebuilt PC

If your computer is running slowly, shows screen tearing, and has lag issues, then it’s time to make an upgrade. It isn’t easy to know the exact components that need upgrades. Mostly it’s your hardware that might likely be the problem. 

If you haven’t made any upgrades in years, you’ll have to do a thorough check of the components. Take time and study the computer parts. It would help if you compared them to the newest available parts. 

This will help you choose the right components that will improve the working of your computer. Here is a guide on effectively upgrading your PC and getting the most out of the hardware. 


An upgrade of the RAM is crucial when you start experiencing difficulty loading pages, switching applications, and live stream. The upgrade can either be increasing or replacing your RAM. 

The RAM stores data that is currently being used by the computer. In gaming, it stores game maps and textures. 

Most computers do come with extra slots for adding RAM. If your PC doesn’t have extra slots, you’ll have no other option but to replace the existing one with a superior module. 

The system scanner tool and the Crucial Advisor tool can help you identify the RAM compatible with your PC. 

Graphics Card

You’ll need to upgrade the graphic card when you experience lag, screen tearing, and freezing graphics. The upgrade will improve your experience. 

The gaming computers come with special graphic cards. However, the manufactures of ordinary computers use low-end graphics cards. 


Upgrading your processor (CPU) will improve the efficiency of your computer. However, making this upgrade can be quite involving. 

You have to ensure the memory and motherboard are compatible with the new processor. Incompatibility means you’ll have to make a replacement of the whole unit at the same time. The cooling system of the PC should also be able to accommodate the upgrade. 

Various benchmark tests can help you determine the right processor upgrade. After the tests, you will know if the CPU is underpowered and many more. 


The issues associated with storage are freezing, hangs, and warning that storage is full. Make an upgrade of the storage if you experience any of this. 

If your PC uses the traditional hard drive, you can opt for the Solid State Drive. The SSD runs faster, and this allows the entire computer system to function efficiently. 

The manufacturers of Solid State drives and hard drives are constantly increasing the capacity of these storage drives. Therefore, finding the right replacement won’t be tricky. 

However, make an extensive comparison of your storage disk with newer models before making a purchase. 

The system scanner and the crucial advisor tools can help you find the storage drives compatible with your computer. 

Upgrade the Peripherals

This is an important thing for game lovers. An upgrade of your peripherals will boost your gaming experience. 

If you are using an old monitor, changing to a new monitor can improve the visibility of photos, games, etc. 

You can also upgrade the mouse and keyboard to feel the difference. Generally, it’s not hard to make upgrades to computer hardware. 

The Benefit Of Prebuilt PC

1. Warranty and Technical Support

The great thing about the prebuilt PC is it comes with a default warrant period. However, during the warranty period, you are not supposed to make any component changes. 

It’s because changing the component can cause unnecessary damage to the PC. Many manufacturers have the Return Merchandise Authorization (RMA) department.  

It deals with troubleshooting and component failure. Plus, they also offer free customer care services. 

To enjoy all these services, you should avoid violating the warranty. Making an upgrade of any components means breaking the warranty. 

2. Easy and Cheap To Buy

Many major manufacturers like Dell and HP focus on the production of prebuilt PCs. It’s an excellent option for those who don’t have the time to shop for the parts. 

Instead of waiting for parts to come from different vendors, you can grab a prebuilt budget-friendly PC.

If you need a PC for browsing, the prebuilt PC is the best option. It can perform such functions efficiently.

Limitations Of Prebuilt PC 

1. One faulty part can bring down the Entire PC

Those who build their PCs usually know the severity of such. They tend to know how a defective part looks and sounds. 

You should always identify any faults in your PC earlier before it causes any severe complications. 

You can only do this by being keen when using your PC. Most prebuilt PCs tend to have faulty power supply units (PSU). 

The bad thing is that when dealing with the PSU issue, you will have to send away the whole PC for repairs instead of just purchasing and replacing the PSU. 

You might know the exact issue but cannot fix it since it will void your warranty. The same happens in cases of other PC hardware, and this can be so frustrating.

2. You Don’t Find the Exact Configuration You Need

When shopping, it’s advisable you have the right idea of the functions your PC will be performing. This helps you stick to your budget. 

If you love multitasking, go for a PC with great RAM. However, you might purchase a computer with good RAM, and it comes with beefy graphics. This is just a single scenario; overall, it’s harder to get the exact qualities you need.  


It is generally possible to upgrade prebuilt PC components like CPU, fans, video cards, and even the motherboard.

These parts are a little more complicated/ technical and have more dependencies than storage and memory drive upgrades. The great thing is any upgrade will offer you an improved performance.

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