Computer Expansion

There are times when you’ll want or need more features from your computer, the best way to do this is by adding expansion boards.

In this article we’ll show you how to add expansion boards.

Expansion boards, or cards, are rectangular shaped circuit boards that plug into slots on your motherboard. Depending on the motherboard you have purchased it may have a total of 7 to 9 slots.

The larger black slots are older ISA or industry standard architecture 16-bit types.

The smaller white slots are the newer PCI or peripheral circuit interfaces 32-bit types.

Some newer motherboards may also have a brown slot; this one is called an accelerated graphics port or AGP for short.

The AGP port is used for the newer high-speed graphics boards.

If your motherboard supports AGP, and you have an AGP graphics board, you will yield better full motion video and 3D graphics.

There are several expansion options you can opt for.

THE MOST COMMON ARE:

1. A Video Card.

2. An Audio or Sound Card.

3. A Network Card.

And the list goes on and on.

We’ll start with the basics first.

Your video card should be first on the list; it will be either a PCI or AGP type card.

To install your card, determine what type it is first by referring to its instruction book.

If the expansion board has jumpers, or dip switches on it, you may have to set them for the type of system you are building.

Most of the time the factory, or default settings, will work fine but check with the instructions that came with the card to be sure.

Insert the card in the proper socket (PCI or AGP) and press straight down making sure you push evenly on both sides until the card is seated.

It’s OK to seesaw the card slightly but don’t bend the card sideways.

Secure the card with a screw.

Do the same for the remaining cards.

To remove a card simply reverse the procedure.

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