A computer tower, also called a computer case, computer pedestal, system board, or computer pedestal, is the main enclosure that houses all of a computer’s components. These components include a central processing unit (CPU), microprocessor, random access memory (RAM), hard drive, video card, and optical drive. While many people know the importance of owning a computer, few truly understand how a computer tower actually works.
Most computers operate on a standard ATX form factor. However, more advanced computer towers have been developed which utilize the innovative technologies of Semiconductor chip technology for their operation. There are several different types of computer towers available for today’s unique computer needs. Below is a brief outline of the most popular computer tower varieties currently available for purchase:
Desktop computer tower designs were primarily created for desktop use, but they have also been adapted for use in laptop computers. A desktop tower computer tower is generally taller than a typical laptop computer tower. This height difference enables desktop towers to be used in notebook style laptops. Laptop computers use battery power to operate; therefore, a battery backup is important to ensure that the laptop can continue to operate when it is unplugged. Battery backup systems in laptop towers enable the battery to be recharged during long computer sessions without the computer owner having to leave the system all together. This option is often referred to as “standby” power.
Mini desktop computer towers are generally only used in notebook type computers. These small sized devices contain only the necessary components for the computer’s operation. The Mini tower typically has fewer components than desktop pcs. These mini towers generally offer only two to six ports for connections to the external components of the computer.
Larger desktop PCs, also referred to as “laptop towers”, come with more internal components. Larger laptop computer towers have several different storage components available. They may include a CD/DVD burner, a USB port for connecting the computer to a portable media player such as a portable CD player or a USB port that allows the user to connect their laptop to a sound card for music play. Other options available include an audio input or output, built in speakers, and additional memory and hard drive space.
Computer Tower Design Benefits
A major benefit to the larger computer towers is their ability to incorporate the latest technologies. Most desktop computers have built in components such as the standard memory cards, built in speakers, and built in cameras and webcams. Larger towers, due to their larger size, can include these types of features, in addition to the basic components that are found inside the laptop.
Desktop computer towers can also house other accessories including a variety of different video card models, expansion cards, solid state drives (SSD), and solid state drives (SSD) of faster speed and greater capacity. These components can be costly and time consuming to replace, so it may be wise to invest in a computer tower that can house all these components. Some of the popular components include PCI Express cards, which have become quite popular in recent years due to their high transfer speeds. Some of the other components include an optical drive, FireWire ports, parallel port extensions, USB 2.0 ports, and other hard drive connectivity options.
Computer tower design can have a significant impact on the overall cooling efficiency of the system. The computer tower will generally sit on top of a heat sink and will need additional cooling via a case modding system. The case modding system allows a graphics card to be installed into the computer tower via a hole in the side of the tower. This makes it possible to install a graphics card that is two or three times the size of the original component, with better compatibility and power management. Computer tower cooling is an important aspect of the PC that should not be overlooked.