The video card is the component responsible for generating the images on a monitor connected to the computer, in addition to helping the processor with the most complex graphics. These devices are present in virtually all computers and can come in versions onboard , integrated in the motherboard, or offboard , which allows the user to choose their own configuration . In the latter case, the user has the option of installing a GPU on their computer in order to present higher resolutions or run games and programs with heavy visuals.
Below is how to install a video card in the computer. The procedure, although it seems very technical, can be performed by any user, provided it is done carefully . Before starting, it should be clear that this process is exclusive for desktops (desktops), since the vast majority of laptops do not allow these devices to be replaced. Also, remember to disconnect your computer from electrical power.
Identifying the card
If you use a computer with integrated graphics, that is, without a dedicated GPU, make sure that the video card you are installing is compatible with the expansion slot. The current standard is PCI-Express, but if the equipment is older, check the board manual to find out if it is compatible with the most modern GPUs.
Now that you know that the motherboard has the expansion slot, make sure it is free, since it is possible that your computer already comes with an installed card. A signal that can facilitate this procedure is to observe where the monitor cable is connected to the cabinet. If it is in a higher and more vertical position, close to the USB connectors, RJ45 and more card connections, this means that you are using an onbord card (integrated to the motherboard), it has no dedicated GPU. It is important to note that the GPUs have the connectors in the horizontal orientation and, normally, they remain at the bottom of the cabinet, near other video or audio connections.
To access the motherboard, you must open the cabinet. To do this, look for the cover in the opposite position to the connectors on the board, as it is the part that must open. Check how many screws are fixing the video card to the cabinet . Normally, it is only one, which can be accessed by the open side of the component. However, some plates occupy two positions on the back of the cabinet. Therefore, be assured that it is only a screw that holds the device in jail. Once the plate is unscrewed, it still cannot be removed, despite presenting a small mobility. On the opposite side of the VGA connectors on the video card, locate a small lock next to the motherboard that needs to be pressed to actually release the GPU
. Before removing the plate, check if there is any power cable connected to it and remove it by pressing a small lock on the side. Only then, you can gently pull the video card.
Now, your PCI Express slot is ready to receive the new video card. Note that the connector has a unique position for coupling. To avoid confusion during the procedure, keep in mind that the GPU fans are placed down. Once you insert the video card into the slot or slot, the lock that attaches to the motherboard will close automatically. Check if the positioned card requires the additional power connectors and connect them according to the device requirement. Next, screw the video card to the cabinet and do the first tests of the new GPU
. The most modern models have HDMI, Display Port or DVI connections. This feature is very important, as it will define the type of cable that will connect your video card to the monitor or TV. After installation, make sure the image output cables are connected correctly.
The moment of truth
If the entire procedure is successful, when the computer is turned on, the image will normally be generated on the monitor. Then, all you have to do is install the latest drivers for your new video card. To do this, visit the manufacturer’s website and have the GPU model and version of your operating system at hand. During the installation, your computer screen may flicker and present some irregularities, which is normal and will be completely corrected when the PC restarts at the end of the installation.
Dedicated video cards bring more performance when it comes to graphics, allowing you to run media and game content with higher resolution . When buying, acquire a GPU with adequate performance for the games you usually play and be attentive to the energy requirement. If your source does not have the ability to power the entire system, you may have trouble using the equipment.