Good gaming desktop computer deals are surprisingly affordable these days. For less than £1000, you can get a powerful prebuilt gaming computer today. And you will be able to play all of your favorite PC games at max settings. But so many prebuilt PCs are on the market today, which one should you choose? I’ve tested dozens of desktops over the last few years, and have found the best ones for gaming. In this post, I’ll share my expert advice on how to find the top gaming PC for your hard-earned money.
Building a gaming PC can be a very rewarding experience. But there are many factors that must be taken into consideration when making this decision. Is the PC going to be used for anything other than gaming? What kind of games will you be playing? Are you trying to save money, or have any budgetary constraints put in place? What’s your budget? If you’re looking for something specific, like a wireless-only gaming PC, take these aspects into consideration as well. All of these things should directly affect the type of parts you choose in order to build the most compatible and cost-effective gaming PC you can.
Have you decided to get a gaming computer? If yes, then here are the things that you need to know. It can be overwhelming when trying to choose what is best for you, especially if you aren’t able to test them out yourself. I’ve used many different prebuilt PC’s over the years and it seems every year they get cheaper and more powerful. It has also become easier than ever to build your own PC. Before building my first gaming computer I always thought it sounded intimidating but now I’m hooked!
Even if you have a buddy who does nothing but build and customize PC’s for a living, it can be difficult to know where to start. The good news is that the prebuilt gaming computer has come a long way in the past few years. Today you actually have the option of building your own gaming PC if desired, but don’t discount other desktop options out there. With so many choices out there, how do you know which one is right for you?
Gaming PCs are a lot like “regular” computers. Both require processing power, they both need RAM, they both need a screen with which to display things and so on. But there are also some key differences.
Gaming PCs are more affordable than ever now, but that doesn’t mean it’s a walk in the park making the decision on what to buy. Whether you buy prebuilt or build it yourself, there are questions you need to think about before you spend your hard-earned money. For anyone confused by the various specifications and jargon, or for those not sure on whether self-assembly is for them, here are the things to consider when buying a gaming PC, along with some top tips for the entire process.
Choose the Case for PC
If you’ve ever shopped for a gaming PC, you’ve seen that there are many choices out there. Many of these differences are functional, such as space or cooling considerations, while others are purely aesthetic. These visual styles can range from the subdued to the outlandish and outright attention-grabbing.
If you aren’t restricted by space concerns and have the budget, several larger cases support many peripherals and advanced cooling and lighting systems. These are often less practical for a portable system, although some can be somewhat compact for a high-end desktop.
Choosing the right case for your gaming PC is something that can easily be overlooked. After all, finding the best components is more important, right? Well, not exactly. The right case can not only help you fit everything into your system, but also affect the overall performance and look of your machine.
The case (or chassis) is the box-like frame that encloses all the internal components of your computer. It is the most visible part of your gaming computer system and should look great with or complement your other personal gear. There are several things to consider when choosing a case for your gaming computer, including budget, type and size, aesthetic appeal and special features.
The case is the first component you need to decide on, and it can be the most complex.
Choosing any case for your system can be a challenge. You want something that looks good, and is functional at the same time. While there are lots of unique options available, I’d recommend choosing a case from the mid-tower/ATX category. Mid-tower ATX cases are built to support multiple graphics cards, incorporate plenty of cooling, and can typically hold quite a bit of storage space as well. Some of the more advanced models also offer features such as water cooling or extra fans designed to cool specific components such as the graphics card or processor.
Ports and Connectivity
Like all components, there are a ton of different things to consider when purchasing a gaming PC case. The size and color of the case can have an impact on people’s view of the computer and should be given some consideration. Other design considerations like front panel connectivity and water cooling support are more functional for the person building the computer and effects how easy it will be to build and add other accessories in the case.
Also consider the number of expansion slots available and whether or not they come with covers. Some cases come with built in card readers, fan filters and water cooling support, which may help save you money on add-ons down the road, but also be aware of what case will fit into your desired size and/or color scheme.
Am I ready to start building my own gaming PC? Okay, good. First thing’s first, let’s talk about ports. Most modern CPUs support USB 3.1 Gen 2 (10 gigabits per second), and when using mid-tier to high-end cases, you should see this connectivity matched in the front panel of the chassis. This will give you a standard four or six ports that can be used for devices like your mouse and keyboard. You can also get additional ports on the rear, but they may be hidden behind other connections in order to avoid conflicts with motherboard connections that may appear here.
A case with USB-C port – like the Cooler Master MasterCase H500P Mesh ( $250 from Amazon ) – also allows you to connect a new generation of USB peripherals by utilizing more cable options for power delivery and a stronger, reversible connection option for any peripheral you choose. Additionally, it gives you an important connection that helps future-proof your system: The Type C connector is common in portable devices like smartphone or tablets. For taking this leap of building your own PC gaming system, it can be beneficial to pick a case that supports it when possible.
The front panel of a computer case is an important part of any build, so it’s crucial that it packs the right features and ports. You should put equal consideration into choosing the right components on your enclosure as the parts that will go inside it, starting with the ports.
One of the most important factors when choosing a computer case is future upgradeability. PC hardware technology is constantly evolving, and many components won’t stay relevant forever. While you can always purchase new parts in the future, having access to internal components right out of the box is a must for any prospective builder.
For example, many pre-built computers these days don’t include an optical drive which may not be something you need now — but what happens in three years? Having easy access to an extra SATA port on your motherboard means not having to replace your entire PC just to play some DVDs. This said, there are certainly other considerations when choosing a pre-built system such as form factor, component quality, and aesthetics. Because space is limited in smaller pre-builts, manufacturers often have to make tradeoffs where quality may be concerned.
A larger case allows for more optimal placement of parts and high-quality components that ensure maximum longevity with minimal noise via sound isolation foam lining and higher quality fans.
The standard ATX case is designed to support modern gaming computers. Many cases on the market today are able to accommodate a wide range of components and peripherals, but if future upgrades are a consideration, some of them can be rather challenging. Consider the size of your potential rig and pick a case that allows for easy modifications. The case should also be able to fit room for modern CPU coolers such as liquid cooling systems, additional fans, and graphics cards.
Cooling and airflow
Cooling and airflow are a key part of the design for gaming desktops. They’re tasked with keeping the powerful components inside the machine cool, so you can run them at full speed without worrying about whether they’ll overheat. Your priorities will depend on how much you wish to upgrade: more demanding builds will appreciate premium cooling systems, while pre-made models will come with suitable fans as standard.
Cooling and airflow are particularly important in the case of gaming desktops, as the components commonly used have higher thermal output than their more business-oriented counterparts.
Of course, even if you aren’t looking to game, keeping your PC cool is still very important! That’s because as it works, an internal computer component can get so hot that not only does it slow down while it is hot – but if it overheats, it can be damaged. That’s bad news if you just spent a load of money on a brand new video card or high-end CPU! I suggest reading this guide to the importance of keeping your PC cool and researching cooling systems before purchasing one, with liquid cooling systems being the most common for high-end desktops, although air-cooled systems are often cheaper and easier for a beginner to install.
When it comes to performance, you get what you pay for. It’s the same when picking out a new gaming desktop — the more expensive it is, the faster the processor and graphics card, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t look at other potential sources of bottlenecks. It’s not just a matter of just one component slowing your PC down. It also matters how they work together.
In other words, if you have a powerful GPU but your CPU cannot feed it enough frames, the GPU will just sit there twiddling its thumbs and wait for something to do. The processor must be kept cool with an effective heatsink and fan. It draws power from the electricity running through it, so the current will heat up its surface if you don’t install a cooling device. The RAM also gets hot with use, especially on top models which transfer data very fast. Similar goes for the video card. This way, the cooling system ensures that each part works at its best speed and not overheats.
How to Select a CPU for PC?
An effective CPU can make the difference between a great user experience and a poor one, so it’s essential to choose the right one for your needs. Your CPU will be responsible for displaying all the images, videos and games that you want to use, ensuring that these things never slow down or become compromised in any way. But that is just the beginning of what your CPU does.
Since you are on the hunt for a gaming computer, the most important decision of your build is selecting the right CPU. It doesn’t matter what graphics card, motherboard or RAM you buy, or in what combination it comes…if your CPU isn’t up to snuff, you will lack the performance needed to run modern PC games. My particular requirements for a gaming build are pretty high end – and I’d like to match that with a CPU that can handle a range of tasks. To begin with, I decided to gather some benchmarks on how a variety of popular games perform across different processors.
When it comes to choosing a processor for gaming, most modern CPUs are virtually identical. They can be all overclocked to get similar performance out of them, and any single core performance gains from one CPU to another are negligible. However, in addition to providing raw power for your games, the CPU is a crucial component for media editing and streaming as well, two things that growing numbers of gamers do. So if you have plans to stream your gameplay or record commentary using OBS or other software, a good CPU will help you accomplish those goals more easily. If you’re looking at processors that are meant specifically for gaming however, there are their own set of concerns which we will discuss later.
When making a gaming computer, you want to pick the best combination of speed, power and efficiency. For many people, this can mean looking at the CPU inside your operating system. A processor (or CPU) is basically the “brain” of your computer. It communicates with other components, runs software and controls how quickly the parts work together. There are two major processors that you need to consider when building a computer for gaming: an Intel Core processor for gaming or an AMD Ryzen processor for gaming .
Intel Core processors: The importance of a Core processor can’t be overstated when it comes to gaming. The latest platforms offer extra cores and higher clock speeds, powerful I/O and other technologies that can dramatically improve your overall experience. Plus, the right processor gives you more leeway when upgrading your GPU, allowing you to buy the latest graphics card and make the most of today’s increasingly demanding titles.
AMD processors: AMD processors have long been the go-to option for those looking to save money on a new desktop computer. The AMD brand was once synonymous with cheap, poor-quality and low performance. This changed years ago when AMD successfully revitalized itself and began creating some of the most powerful, efficient and cost-effective processors available on the market. By choosing a reliable CPU such as AMD processors, you will ensure that you get plenty of power to play graphics-intensive games and applications.
Intel’s strong point is raw performance and the number of cores, while AMD focuses more on frequency with their highest end models, which is why most gamers will go for a CPU from this company. Intel CPUs are great but their prices are much higher showing their quality.
How to Select a GPU for PC?
There are two major graphics processing technologies: integrated and dedicated GPUs. Integrated chipsets come built into your CPU, while dedicated GPUs are designed for gaming and other graphics-intensive operations.
What GPU is best for a laptop? The answer to this question ultimately depends on the performance demands of your gaming laptop. If you want to play the latest AAA titles with smooth frame rates at decent resolutions, you’ll need a high-performance graphics card. But let’s say your requirements are more modest, like playing less demanding games like League of Legends and Overwatch. Then getting by with an integrated graphics card or low-end graphics card can suffice. When you’re shopping for any gaming laptop, pairing it with a solid-state drive (SSD) is essential for improving performance and increasing battery life. If it has a spinning hard disk drive (HDD), a small SSD is ideal. You’ll get better boot times and data access speeds.
When building your own gaming PC (or upgrading your current rig), there are a lot of choices that need to be made. There’s no lack of great guides out there on the subject—have you read our guide to what a gaming PC needs?—but perhaps one of the most important factors many gamers overlook is the type of graphics card they should purchase. A dedicated GPU is ideal for playing most modern games, especially at higher resolutions and frame rates, but how do you know which one to buy?
The best gaming graphics card is more than just a powerful gaming graphics processing unit (GPU). It’s an investment that can play a major role when it comes to experiencing high-resolution games at uncapped frame rates and with details set close to ultra. For example, you probably wouldn’t invest in a graphics card that could only run online multiplayer games in 1080p or less. So why would you limit yourself when you’re getting sweaty palms over the next quarter’s biggest AAA release, or even last month’s indie indie darlings?
When you’re looking to build a new gaming computer, the perfect graphics card is crucial. That’s because the GPU is the component that renders videos, 3D visualizations and other graphics on your computer monitor or HDTV screen. If you choose an inadequate GPU, you’ll end up with slow frame rates and choppy video, which will detract from your gaming experience.
When it comes to gaming, the experience a player has can ultimately determine whether or not they pull the trigger on buying an product. With PC games being available for as little as $20 dollars – and up to hundreds of dollars – looking past the price tag could have you compromising on video card quality. When you’re going to be spending countless hours enjoying virtual worlds, nothing short of the absolute best graphics card will do.
Choose RAM for Gaming PC
The amount of RAM inside pre-built gaming PCs is certainly not a trivial issue. If the computer can’t store all the game assets loaded in every level, your game could freeze at any moment as it’s paging old resources from the hard drive to free up space for new assets. That would be a crucial lag that ruins the whole gameplay experience. When considering RAM in a pre-built gaming desktop, capacity is usually the primary concern, with more being better. A computer’s main storage contains data the CPU requires in order to perform tasks and make calculations. Most applications and games use this type of memory instead of the system’s built-in storage. The faster CPU performance, the higher a computer’s demand for RAM capacity.
Gaming computers are often configured with multiple hard drives and over-clocked CPUs, making capacity concerns for RAM less of an issue. You’ll generally want to look for the fastest memory available at the time, as prebuilt gamers will often have an extra-fast CPU installed. A good general starting point is 16GB capacity, but if you know you’re going to be using your gaming PC for other applications or projects in addition to running games, then a higher capacity might make more sense.
So you’re building a gaming PC, right? Well the first thing you need to ask yourself is, “What type of RAM should I be using?” The answer may surprise you. You might think that speed is the most important factor to consider when choosing RAM for your gaming computer. After all, more speed can help your game load faster and run without stalling as often if your GPU falls behind the refresh rate of your monitor. However, capacity is usually the most important consideration when choosing RAM, because having more memory can make all other components perform better and can improve multitasking.
Choose SSD over HDD
For the longest time, mechanical disks were the preferred option for gamers and power users. These were your standard hard drives which were large, bulky and loud. With advancements in technology, solid state drives have become much more affordable over the past few years. As SSDs got faster, more reliable, and more spacious it was only natural they replaced HDDs as standard storage options.
There are a variety of factors that affect hard drive performance. The type of drive is one factor, with the two major types of drives being solid-state drives (SSD) and hard disk drives (HDD). Both SSDs and HDDs are affected by factors like data throughput speed, rotational velocity, and seek times.
An SSDs use flash memory – similar to that found in USB sticks, SD cards and mobile phones – to store data, rather than a spinning platter with magnetic read-write heads as an HDD has. The big difference between flash memory and other forms of digital storage is that there is no need for physical movement when reading from or writing to a memory cell – there’s no need for reading heads because cells aren’t stored magnetically. This is why a solid state drive can operate at much higher speeds than an ordinary hard drive can.
Choose a good Monitor Display
It’s no secret that the graphical processing unit (GPU) is a crucial component of the gaming computer. You can have all the other components top of their game, but if your graphics card is weak, you’ll find yourself waiting on hefty load times and experiencing lag. Of course, you can’t just opt for any old gaming GPU — you need to make sure it will work with your monitor. A good GPU generally has a higher refresh rate and a larger screen resolution than most monitors. So which GPU should you choose if you’re using a 4K monitor, a 1440p or 1680p monitor, or even one with a high refresh rate?
Pairing your monitor and graphics card (GPU) is an important step in building a budget gaming PC. It’s a step that should not be taken lightly though. I’ve seen many people purchase the best graphics cards for gaming without putting one thought into their monitor choice. Or maybe some people don’t realize the impact that the choice of monitor can have on performance when paired with a powerful GPU. The main thing you need to know about monitors, especially gaming monitors, is that not all of them can support high refresh rates or a high resolution. If you want to pair them with a powerful graphics card, you’ll need to make sure they can keep up.
Nvidia’s GTX 1080 and 1070 GPUs are said to have no trouble keeping up with 4K displays, as well as high refresh rate gaming displays like the Acer Predator XR341CK 34″ Curved UltraWide QHD (3440×1440) display. At 3440×1440 pixels and a refresh rate of 120Hz, that is a lot of graphical processing power required.
In the early days of the video gaming industry, consoles dominated with various graphical games that easily got anyone hooked on the age of virtual reality. However, as years went by, PC games continued to inch forward, impressing many with its ever-evolving graphics and functionality.
With companies like NVIDIA and AMD taking full advantage of their hardware in PCs and boosting its efficiency, it wasn’t long before other games began using their graphic libraries in order to run efficiently on better machines. Through the years, we have seen various video games being released in various platforms. On each platform, we have the best hardware manufacturers making custom hardware made specifically for that hardware platform. This means that if you want to get access to top-notch machines for gaming at an affordable price, there is no better time to buy than now.