If you ever bought a car, then you’d know exactly what I mean by accessories. Those tiny extras that make it better in many ways. In computers, it’s the same thing; the devices that make your system unique and give it style. Also, they increase the functionality of the computer, sometimes giving it extra performance and of course, wicked looks. These accessories come in two forms: internal (neon lights, fan controllers, hard drive coolers etc) and external, or peripherals (mice, keyboards, pads, controllers etc).
If you are in pursuit of building the ultimate machine, then these accessories will definitely come in handy. They will give you an edge when it comes to performance and therefore, you should not overlook them. If you have reached this point in your build, then you are almost done. By this point you have already picked out the most important parts (case, motherboard, CPU, cooling system, video card, RAM, hard drive and PSU), and are now looking for those awesome extras.
What accessories can you buy?
As I mentioned earlier, there are lots of accessories you might want to put on a computer, from aesthetics to performance. Also, the peripherals can be considered accessories and in the case of laptops, just about any other item besides the laptop and its charger can be called an accessory.
- Aesthetics – Aesthetic accessories can be a number of objects. Usually, computer modders use these to create awesome effects and one of a kind computers. Cold Cathode neon or LED strips are the most used lighting methods, but some use UV lights and other UV reactive materials such as paint or wires for a more dramatic effect. Also, some use fans with integrated LEDs and control them with wicked looking fan controllers.
- Performance – In the performance sector, there are all kinds of computer accessories you can add. For instance, DDR coolers or hard drive coolers that give your cooling system a hand by cooling these components better. Also, other aftermarket cooler for video cards or motherboards are available. All of these give your system a boost in performance, giving you the upper edge when gaming.
- Peripherals – Ranging from the old keyboard and mouse to top of the line gaming controllers, mouse pads or headphones, these provide the proper control and maximize the playing experience. These also have the role of making you more efficient when using the computer.
Choosing the right accessories
Choosing what accessories to buy is not that hard. It basically depends on your budget and how much you want your computer to stand out. Of course, there are some redundancies you must avoid. such as coolers and vents if you have a water cooling system or aftermarket video card air coolers if you do not plan on overclocking. We featured a top of the best CPU aftermarket air coolers, but besides these, you can add video card coolers, fans and fan controllers or even water cooling solutions.
These accessories can be bought in most computer parts shops, or directly from their manufacturers. Depending on what type of performance accessory you are interested in, here are some of the best known manufacturers:
In terms of aesthetics, you decide how much you invest. Cold cathode neon lights are a great way to make your computer stand out, but use them only if you have a side panel window. Also, if you have a water cooled system, you can use an UV solution for the water and UV neons in the case, this gives an awesome effect, as do UV reactive cables (can be bought separately, or you can use UV markers to paint them). Computer modders have used these accessories to achieve the best looking computers for some time now.
If you are interested in such accessories, there are some modding websites that allow you to purchase some great esthetic accessories that will allow you to make an awesome looking computer. Here are a few:
We are going to talk a bit about peripherals because they are very important for your rig, be it a work computer or a gaming machine. For example, gaming mice and keyboards or ergonomic office keyboards can make the difference and help you when having long work or gaming sessions. We already covered the best gaming mice to improve your game, now let’s take a look at some ergonomic solutions for your office work.
Best Ergonomic Keyboards
5. Microsoft Wireless Comfort Desktop 5000
4. Kinesis KB500USB-BLK Advantage USB Contoured Keyboard
3. Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000
2. Fellowes Microban Split Design Keyboard
1. Logitech Cordless Desktop Wave Pro Ergonomic Keyboard and Mouse
Best Ergonomic Mice
5. Verbatim 97592 Ergo Wireless Desktop Optical Mouse
4. Logitech M570 Wireless Trackball
3. Wow Pen Joy Vertical Ergonomic Optical Mouse
2. Evoluent VM4 Vertical Mouse Right Handed
1. Microsoft Natural Wireless Laser Mouse 6000
Other peripherals of interest are monitors, which we also covered and we showed you how to buy and how to use multiple monitors (multiple monitors offer good ergonomics) and printers (also covered both buying guide and setting up network printers). But you do not have to stop there, you can buy gaming controllers or work specific accessories, such as mix tables for DJs or sound technicians, graphic tablets for Photoshop experts or 3D designers.
Choosing the right accessories can have a huge impact on the way your computer looks and performs. They can help you accomplish tasks with more ease or give you the upper hand in games. As I said before, what accessories you choose is up to you and depends on your needs and your budget.