- WinSAT: Is Your Computer Ready for Gaming Under Vista?
- How to Check Your WinSAT Score
- The Perfect CPU
- How Much RAM?
- DirectX 10 Graphic Cards: What? When?
- Fast Hard Disk
- Gaming Performance and Compatibility Under Vista
- Compatibility Mode
- Example: Age of Empires III
- DirectX 10 Changes the Way We Look at Hardware
- Geometry Shader
- Unified Architecture
- Where Are the Other DirectX Features?
- Games Explorer
- Bottom Line
Fast Hard Disk
Do you need larger hard disks for gaming? No, at least not in the foreseeable future. Even a 100–150GB hard disk will prove more than sufficient for the hardcore gamer. The key is disk speed. Games need to access the hard disk virtually all the time in order to load new maps, player models, or sound files; therefore, games load and perform significantly faster on a high-speed hard disk. Because hard disks are mechanical, they’re the slowest part of your computer, which is why you need a model with a speed of at least 7,200 RPM (revolutions per minute). Gamers might prefer the new Western Digital series of 10,000 RPM hard disks with either 74GB or 150GB. Speed comes at a price, though: The 150GB model costs more than $200.