We may earn a commission if you make a purchase through one of our links. The LA Times editorial staff was not involved in the creation of this content. Learn more

Popular Components of a PC Explained

Popular Component of a PC Explained

A PC is composed of many parts that could leave an average user confused. This article explains some popular components of a typical PC.


The motherboard is the control hub of a PC and to where other components of the PC are connected. It can be described as the computer’s main circuit board. Since all the components of a computer are connected to the motherboard, it serves as the launching pad for all operations on a computer. The motherboard facilitates the interaction between and among a computer system’s hardware components.

Also referred to as the logic board or mainboard, the two main components of the motherboard are the Central Processing Unit (CPU) chip and the Random Access Memory (RAM) slots. Other components of a PC found on the motherboard are:

  • Power supply connector
  • Floppy-disk controller
  • Basic Input and Output System (BIOS)
  • Universal Serial Bus (USB)
  • Accelerated Graphics Port (AGP) slot
  • Parallel port
  • Integrated Drive Electronics (IDE) controller
  • Mouse and keyboard ports
  • Clock generator
  • Heat sink
  • Peripheral Component Interconnect (PCI) slot
  • Accelerated Graphics Port (AGP) slot

Intel motherboards and amd motherboards are two of the most popular motherboards in the computer electronics market. There is also the more powerful htpc motherboards that is used in homes. Fully known as Home Theater Personal Computer motherboard, an HTPC motherboard is designed to cater to a home’s media needs like playing music and videos and displaying pictures.

There are pre-built HTPC motherboards available for sale. Alternatively, a bespoke HTPC motherboard can be built from scratch.

Computer Case

A computer case, sometimes referred to as system unit or computer chassis, is the outer part of the PC unit that can be seen. Within it lies several components of the computer system. Minus the mouse, keyboard, and monitor, the computer case houses every other part of the computer. Usually largely dependent on the size of the motherboard, the size of a computer case varies. The most common sizes of computer cases are:

  • Small-form-factor (SFF)
  • Mini-Tower
  • Mid-Tower
  • Full Tower

Case Fans

Also known as system fans, case fans are fans attached to the computer case to control the airflow inside a computer case. Case fans are typically attached to the back or front of the computer case. A case fan could either aid the inflow of fresh air into the case or help expel hot air from the case.

CPU Cooler

A CPU cooler is a specialized cooler that draws heat away from the CPU chip and other heat-producing chips surrounding it. Unlike the case fan that works to cool the entire computer case, CPU coolers are specifically designed to keep the CPU cool. They come in three different types; air, open-loop coolers, and closed air coolers.

Apart from CPU coolers and case fans, thermal compounds are also used to reduce heat inside a computer case. Thermal compounds are substances that conduct heat; they are usually applied to the heatsink.

Graphics Cards

A graphics card is a part of the motherboard that converts video data to images the monitor can understand. The Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) stands at the core of the operations of a computer’s graphics cards. Integrated graphics cards and discrete graphic cards are the two types of graphic cards.

Graphics cards are particularly useful to gamers as the quality of the gaming image the monitor displays is mainly dependent on the graphics card.

Sound Card

A sound card is an add-on card that produces sound on a computer system. Sound cards are also referred to as soundboards or audio output devices. A computer does not necessarily need a sound card to produce sound. Still, the sound card is added to the motherboard as an expansion slot to connect external sound devices like loudspeakers and microphones.

bestcovery team.jpg
Our research team searches out the best of everything so that you can confidently pick the perfect products and services for your needs.
Related Content
Go to top