The dramatic leap in technology within the gaming industry is startling when you track the progress made in the last two decades. It is crazy to think that the BlackBerry Key2 LE has more computing power than many early consoles or gaming rigs. These days, games and gaming rig continue to become more capable as gaming studios push the technological envelope with expansive, open world games like Avalanche Studios’, Just Cause 4.

With these new titles set to release in the near future, you may be feeling like your computer rig is not ready to handle the graphic or processing stress these games require. In order to alleviate your anxiety, below are a few upgrades that will take your gaming rig up a notch.

9 Upgrades That Will Take Your Gaming Rig Up a Notch

Get a New Graphics Card for your Gaming Rig

If you love playing huge, highly mod-able games such as GTA 5 or Skyrim, you’re going to need a graphics card that can handle these massive worlds. You do not need to break the bank in order to upgrade your graphics cards, however. Both Nvidia and Radeon offer a wide selection of powerful, yet affordable units.

Update Your Graphics Drivers

There is something to be said about nostalgia with older games. Who doesn’t love reliving some of the fun or intense moments of their childhood? That said, you want your rig to be able to handle both your favorite older games as well as those newer, more demanding titles. Graphics companies will release updates and tweaks annually, so if you are not downloading driver updates regularly, you are missing out on one of the easiest ways to boost your rig’s performance.

Buy an SSD

Solid state drives will not boost frame rates, but they will decrease load times. Games take up a substantial portion of storage space and computing power from your mechanical hard disk. All this stored data creates a processing bottleneck. By keeping external drives, you relieve your computer of baggage and speed up its ability to focus on other tasks. We suggest you check out an SSD that has more than 250GB of space.

Defrag Your Hard Drive

This tip is for those of you who will inevitably ignore the aforementioned tip. If you do not have an SSD, it is essential that you regularly defrag your hard drive. At its essence, defragging reorganizes your files, storing the relevant ones all in the same place to make them easier for your computer to read and write data. A defrag every few months will increase your hard drive’s efficiency.

Cool Down Your PC

Like a Ferrari compared to Civic, PC’s require far more maintenance and tuning than their console counterparts ever would. If you want the best performance out of your rig, it is vital that you monitor the temperatures of your processor and graphics card. High temperatures can lead to throttling and decreased clocking speed, crashes, and overheating which can negatively affect your gaming experience. If you’re curious about liquid cooling vs air cooling, then do some research and discern which option is right for your rig.

9 Upgrades That Will Take Your Gaming Rig Up a Notch

Turn Off Prefetch and SuperFetch

Both these Windows features were added to help Windows applications startup faster. For serious gamers, even small tweaks can make all the difference. Turn off the useless Prefetch and SuperFetch to decrease background activity and loading times.

A Slight Overclock is Worth It

GPUs have standard factory limits that do not actually represent their max capacity. A slight overclock can speed up your graphic card’s clock speeds beyond their factory settings.

Augment Your Gaming with GeForce Experience or Gaming Evolved

If you do have a Radeon or Nvidia GPU, you can utilize their AMD Gaming Evolved, or GeForce Experience, which have a list of optimized graphics settings geared for best performance.

A Clean PC, is a Happy PC

To keep your gaming rig running at its most optimal level, you must regularly clean your PCs insides from dust, crumbs, hair, or any other gunk that could lead to internal overheating. Compressed air is cheap and should be used regularly.

If you really want to get into some serious gaming, you need a rig capable of handling today’s modern games. Follow these tips, and you’ll instantly notice improvements in your gaming experience.