The 7 Best Gaming Personal Computers

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This wiki has been updated 35 times since it was first published in May of 2015. Gamers are a breed apart from regular PC users, which is why they demand their own category of personal computers that can handle the fast-moving action of today's titles. With tons of storage space, fast processors, and attractive designs, these deliver high-resolution entertainment at ultra-smooth frame rates. Some also prove that pre-built boxes can be highly cost effective. When users buy our independently chosen editorial selections, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.

1. Skytech Legacy 3.0

2. Skytech Siege 3.0

3. HP Pavilion

Editor's Notes

January 22, 2021:

This is a somewhat challenging time to build your own PC due to the hard-to-find nature of high-end GPUs, so a pre-built rig is actually a good way to get your hands on an RTX 3000 series system. The Skytech Legacy 3.0 and Skytech Siege 3.0 are great selections for 3070 and 3080 GPUs, respectively, as is the Thermaltake LCGS Shadow 370, although the Thermaltake does require a larger investment due to its nicer case, and its Ryzen 3000 series CPU doesn't quite perform at the same level as Intel's 10th-generation processor. If you're on a super-tight budget, the Skytech Chronos Mini will suffice for popular games like Minecraft, while the HP Pavilion is also reasonably priced and is a better choice for future upgrades.

January 15, 2020:

There are a ton of pre-built gaming PCs available these days, and despite what some of the more picky gamers claim, they can be both powerful and cost-effective, especially if you're not interested in or able to build your own machine. One company that makes a wide range of exceptional boxes is SkyTech; the Skytech Supremacy X, it should be noted, isn't their absolute newest release, but it does use the vaunted RTX 2080 Ti GPU, the current fastest consumer-grade video card available. It stands apart not only due to its speed, but also how good it looks; we have yet to find another PC case like the ThermalTake box it's built in. Of course, if you're not keen on shelling out that much, the SkyTech Legacy 3.0 is another high-powered option that's in a much more reasonable price range, and it comes with either an RTX 2070 Super or 2080 Super, both of which are excellent gaming GPUs. The SkyTech Shiva is a bit more affordable, with slightly slower components, while the SkyTech Legacy Mini offers great performance in a small package.

Speaking of small, there's also the Zotac Gaming Mek, which has a remarkably small footprint, especially in light of its powerful hardware. Its compact size would make it a good choice for transporting over to your friend's house to show off your new VR headset. Meanwhile, the CyberPowerPC Gamer offers an excellent price-to-performance ratio, even though you may not have heard of its manufacturer. And for AMD lovers, there's the Centaurus Andromeda A4, which uses the relatively recent Radeon 5700 XT GPU to deliver seamless 1440p gaming.

There are also some more prominent names making excellent gaming PCs. The HP Pavilion is a mid-range choice from the popular company, and the HP Omen Obelisk is their high-end model. While the Obelisk is an incredibly powerful device, you'll want to make sure that its BIOS and other firmwares are up to date in order to avoid overheating issues. And we want to make special mention of the Acer Nitro 50 as a remarkably inexpensive option that uses the Red Team's Radeon RX 580 to deliver surprisingly good 1080p performance on a budget.

Special Honors

Origin PC For quite a while now, these folks have been taking orders for custom PCs and pumping out well-made and reliable computers with good warranties and respectable components. You'll pay a premium as compared to building your own or buying a pre-built model, but if you're unable to undergo the process yourself and unwilling to compromise on component quality, the price may be worth it to you.

Falcon Northwest This company boasts over two decades of experience design and producing enthusiast gaming rigs. They don't just focus on performance, but also appearance, so if you're a streamer or just extremely picky about how your PC looks and performs, you'll want to contact them. They have a wide range of high-level options to choose from.

4. HP Omen 30L

5. CyberPowerPC Gamer Extreme VR

6. Thermaltake LCGS Shadow 370

7. Skytech Chronos Mini

A Different Breed of PC User

Some are sold in unconventional shapes in order to add character to any game room.

A gaming personal computer is similar to an average PC, but it includes a large number of components designed specifically for gaming. These components often include high-end video cards that help to build the gaming PC in a way that enhances game play. They often range in price depending on the specific components needed.

Some are packed with storage space and high-speed RAM capabilities, while others are moderate and focus more on the game and less on graphics and performance. Some come with built-in WiFi adapters and are even sold with a matching keyboard and mouse.

Because PC gamers are such a varying breed, gaming PCs are often customized to fit the individual consumer. However, there are many gaming PCs on the market that come equipped with the power and components needed to accommodate nearly any serious gamer.

Many of these gaming PCs not only have necessary internal and external components such as USB ports and high-speed RAM, but they also come with aesthetically pleasing cases that are sometimes available in multiple color options. The internal and external LED lights on some of these cases serve to enhance the gaming experience and add an element of ambience. Some are sold in unconventional shapes in order to add character to any game room.

How To Buy A Gaming PC

If you are new to the PC gaming world, choosing the right PC can be an overwhelming task. Fortunately, we have compiled a list of important considerations before deciding on the right gaming personal computer.

First of all, and this is no surprise, set your budget. Purchasing a gaming personal computer can get expensive if you don’t know what you’re looking for. You could easily get sucked in by all of the hype and lingo and end up buying more than you actually need. Decide what you can afford, and do your best to stick to it.

However, if you plan to use your PC for more than gaming, a high-speed processor could be a good choice.

Second, consider the types of games you plan to play. Some games require high speeds and storage space while others require high-quality graphics. Some games rely on speed and stealth while others require careful thought and strategy. If you play mostly strategy games, it is best to find a balance between CPU performance and graphics. If you prefer fast-paced war or other shooting games, a fast CPU is likely to be necessary.

Third, your central processing unit (CPU) and how it cools is important to your PC’s overall performance. Many gaming PCs don’t need high-end processors and can afford to focus instead on high-quality graphics. However, if you plan to use your PC for more than gaming, a high-speed processor could be a good choice. Many PCs have internal and external fans to ensure the CPU stays cool. However, in order to reduce noise and keep up with higher speed processors, many gaming PCs are implementing liquid cooling systems.

Fourth, consider the power. Today’s personal computers have far more power than they did even a few years ago. Gaming consumes a significant amount of power, and if you don’t want to overrun your system, you will have to ensure that your power supply can support your games.

Next, consider input and control. You will need a high-performance keyboard and mouse in order to enhance your gaming experience. However, you don’t need to drain your bank account to find a wireless keyboard and mouse that will work well with your chosen games. If the PC you choose does not already come with its own compatible external devices, consider the input options (USB, HDMI, etc.), and shop around for something within your budget that is known to be compatible and work well for gamers.

Finally, consider the audio and communications tools you will need when purchasing your gaming PC. All gaming PCs from the manufacturer come equipped with a certain amount of audio capabilities. You might also need to consider headsets if you plan to play multiplayer games online or intend to communicate with other players.

A Brief History of the Gaming Personal Computer

Gaming led to the advancement of computer technology in many ways. In 1981, IBM created the Color Graphics Adapter (CGA) display system for their PC. It could be connected to a television or computer monitor in order to enhance the color and picture quality of PC games. IBM later created the Video Graphics Array (VGA) in 1987 as a new computer display standard. This interface is still used to support high-definition picture today with new types of inputs such as HDMI or DVI.

Many developers used these three platforms as their goal when creating new video games.

Commodore 64, Amiga, and Atari were introduced to the PC gaming world in the 1980s with what were considered high-quality graphics and sound. Many developers used these three platforms as their goal when creating new video games. However, as popularity shifted to average PCs and Apple computers, those developers adjusted to meet the growing demand. By 1993, game developers that created games for popular gaming consoles often created PC compatible versions as well.

That same year, Falcon Northwest boasted that they had created the first line of computers, the Falcon MACH series, specifically for the serious gamer. Widespread Internet access and video cards containing high-speed graphics processors have since changed the world of computer gaming and made it even easier to become a serious gamer, even with very little knowledge of the equipment itself.

Christopher Thomas
Last updated by Christopher Thomas

Building PCs, remodeling, and cooking since he was young, quasi-renowned trumpeter Christopher Thomas traveled the USA performing at and organizing shows from an early age. His work experiences led him to open a catering company, eventually becoming a sous chef in several fine LA restaurants. He enjoys all sorts of barely necessary gadgets, specialty computing, cutting-edge video games, and modern social policy. He has given talks on debunking pseudoscience, the Dunning-Kruger effect, culinary technique, and traveling. After two decades of product and market research, Chris has a keen sense of what people want to know and how to explain it clearly. He delights in parsing complex subjects for anyone who will listen -- because teaching is the best way to ensure that you understand things yourself.

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