The best gaming PCs in 2021 | Tom’s Guide

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imageThe best gaming PCs give you the power to play the most impressive, demanding games in the biggest and most beautiful form possible.They also tend to carry some of the highest price tags in the PC market.

It’s a big investment, we know, but trust us: it’s an investment that pays off in more ways than one.Sure, blasting through hordes of foes at blazing-fast frame rates and high resolutions is fun, but you can just as easily use your gaming rig for graphic design, animation or simply streaming movies and TV in beautiful 4K.

Get great sound with the best gaming headsets around The best gaming mouse you can buy The best PlayStation Now games Now that new consoles have hit the market we should point out that while the PS5 and Xbox Series X deliver plenty of power, they’re still no match for one of the best gaming desktops.If you want fast-loading SSDs, gorgeous ray tracing, massive quantities of RAM, 4K resolution and 60+ fps frame rate, you don’t have to wait until the consoles come back in stock; you can have the the best gaming desktops right now.

Plus, unlike a console, you can upgrade PCs as better components becomes available.

Don’t be put off by the prospect of getting your hands dirty; modern PCs are easier to upgrade than ever, and the time you invest will pay off with amazing performance when you’re playing the best PC games on the market.

We test new gaming PCs regularly to see if they pass muster for this list, and update the page as systems become available.Read on, and we’ll help you find your next great gaming machine.

What are the best gaming PCs right now? Until recently, the discontinued Alienware Aurora R11 was one of our best gaming desktops to buy.It’s now been replaced by the Alienware Aurora R12 , which appears to be the same basic system with some under-the-hood upgrades to take advantage of new Intel 11th Gen and AMD Ryzen CPUs.It looks like a worthy follow-up to the R11 and a great buy if you’re in the market for a gaming PC, but we’re holding off on formally recommending it until we get one in to review.

During the ongoing chip shortage gaming PCs are scarce and back-ordered enough that to some extent, whatever you can find for a reasonable price is the best gaming PC you can buy right now.

If it’s available, the Corsair Vengeance i7200 is one of the best gaming PCs you can buy right now, with powerful components and highly customizable options.

The RGB lighting is a nice touch, while the price is reasonable, considering the level of performance you can get.

On the other hand, the Corsair One Pro i200 is a good choice for folks seeking a hybrid gaming machine for both graphic design work and play.There’s also the MSI MEG Trident X, which boasts a gorgeous design and is small enough to fit into almost any gaming setup.

If you want something pre-built that looks like it belongs in an office (i.e.no flashing lights or other bells and whistles) but still packs enough power to play the latest games, consider the subtle Dell XPS 8940.

The best gaming PCs you can buy

(Image credit: Corsair) 1.Corsair Vengeance i7200 Best gaming PC for customization Specifications VR Ready: Yes Processor: Up to Intel Core i9-10850K/AMD Ryzen 9 5900X RAM: Up to 64 GB Graphics Card: Up to Nvidia GeForce RTX 3090 Storage: Up to two 2 TB SSDs Accessories: None TODAY’S BEST DEALS $2,349.99 View at CORSAIR $2,349.99 View at Microsoft US $2,899.99 View at Best Buy See all prices (12 found) Reasons to buy + Powerful, gaming-oriented hardware + Flashy, customizable lighting effects + Relatively low price Reasons to avoid – Boxy, old-fashioned case design – Doesn’t include peripherals The Corsair Vengeance i7200 doesn’t cost nearly as much as some of its competitors, but it still gives you access to some of the most powerful hardware on the market.That’s because the Vengeance i7200 comes in a plain-looking case, and doesn’t include any peripherals.But if you prefer substance to style, this is probably the right gaming PC for you.With CPUs up to an Intel Core i9-10850K and GPUs up to an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3090, you can make a beast of a machine — if you can pay for it.

Apart from that, the Vengeance i7200 features beautiful RGB lighting, a tasteful glass side panel and extremely quiet fans.That makes it a good productivity tool in addition to a gaming powerhouse.

Whether you game in QHD or 4K, there’s almost certainly a Vengeance i7200 build that will work with your setup.

The Corsair Vengeance i7200 won “best gaming desktop” at the Tom’s Guide Awards 2021 for gaming .

Read our full Corsair Vengeance i7200 review .

(Image credit: Alienware) 2.Alienware Aurora Ryzen Edition R10 Best AMD gaming PC Specifications VR Ready: Yes Processor: Up to AMD Ryzen 9 5950X RAM: Up to 128 GB Graphics Card: AMD Radeon 6800 XT Storage: Up to 2 TB SSD + 2 TB HDD Accessories: Dell Multi-Media Keyboard, Dell Optical Mouse MS116AW TODAY’S BEST DEALS $1,109.99 View at Dell $1,659.99 View at Best Buy Prime $2,999 View at Amazon Reasons to buy + Good AMD componentsst + Reasonable price + Solid gaming performance Reasons to avoid – Very loud – Inconvenient design If you want a powerful pre-built gaming PC, but want to steer clear of Intel and Nvidia components, then the Alienware Aurora Ryzen Edition R10 is the way to go.This gaming PC is large and heavy, but that’s because it packs top-of-the-line AMD CPUs and GPUs.It’s a powerful tool for full HD, QHD or even 4K gaming, and yet it’s not as obscenely expensive as these systems come.

Granted, Alienware machines tend to sound like jet engines, and the Aurora Ryzen Edition R10 is no exception.

Furthermore, the R10’s built-in software tends to confuse rather than enhance the experience.But when it comes to high-fidelity gaming with AMD components, the Aurora Ryzen Edition R10 is one of the most comprehensive systems currently available.

Read our full Alienware Aurora Ryzen Edition R10 review .

(Image credit: MSI) 3.MSI MEG Trident X Best gaming PC design Specifications VR Ready: Yes Processor: Up to Intel Core i9-10900K, 3.7-5.3 GHz RAM: Up to 64 GB Graphics Card: Up to Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Storage: Up to 1 TB SSD + 1 TB HDD Accessories: MSI Clutch GM11 Mouse, MSI Vigor GK30 Keyboard TODAY’S BEST DEALS $2,449 View at Amazon $2,609 View at Amazon $3,199 View at Amazon See all prices (4 found) Reasons to buy + Powerful performance + Quiet cooling + Smart, compact design Reasons to avoid – Expensive, can cost up to $3k+ – Subpar peripherals compared to competitors on this list The first thing you’ll notice about the MSI MEG Trident X is that it’s absolutely gorgeous.This small, angular machine fits easily into just about any gaming nook, and is ideal for either desktop or living room setups.

The second thing you’ll notice is that it runs games absolutely beautifully, whether you want to experience them at full HD, QHD or UHD settings.With a variety of processor, GPU and RAM options from which to choose, you’ll be able to customize a machine that works for your games, and for your monitor.

Just be aware that no matter how you design the MEG Trident X, it’s going to be expensive.Furthermore, the accessories it comes with — the MSI Clutch GM11 Mouse and MSI Vigor GK30 Keyboard — are mediocre at best, and disappointing at worst.Still, in terms of both physical design and raw performance, the MEG Trident X is one of the most gorgeous and functional gaming PCs on the market today.

Read our full MSI MEG Trident X review .

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(Image credit: Corsair) 4.

Corsair One Pro i200 Best gaming PC hybrid Specifications VR Ready: Yes Processor: Intel Core i9-10940X RAM: 64 GB Graphics Card: Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti Storage: 2 TB SSD Accessories: None TODAY’S BEST DEALS $7,968 View at Amazon Reasons to buy + Gorgeous, compact design + Powerful hardware + Runs quietly Reasons to avoid – Priced around $4k, making it ridiculously expensive – Outdated GPU The Corsair One Pro i200 is arguably one of the best gaming desktops if you need a device for both work and play.This powerful machine packs an Intel Core i9-10940X CPU and an Nvidia GeFore RTX 2080 Ti GPU.

That’s admittedly not the newest gear, but it’s still more than capable of running the latest games at high settings, or churning through massive amounts of graphic design or video projects.

The real selling point of the Corsair One Pro i200, though, might just be its chassis.This PC is about as small and light as pre-built gaming desktops come, at only 15 x 8 x 7 inches and 23 pounds.Furthermore, the device is absolutely gorgeous, with a tasteful gunmetal color scheme, and two programamble LED lights.You might need a few more USB ports than this system offers for heavy-duty creative work, but if you can afford the One Pro i200, it’ll serve you well both professionally and for fun.

Read our full Corsair One Pro i200 review .

(Image credit: HP) 5.HP Omen 30L Gaming Desktop Quietest gaming PC Specifications VR Ready: Yes Processor: Up to 10th Gen Intel Core i9-10900K Graphics: Up to Nvidia GeForce RTX 3090 RAM: Up to 64 GB Storage: Up to 2 TB SSD + 2 TB HDD Accessories: HP USB Wired Keyboard, HP USB Wired Mouse TODAY’S BEST DEALS Recommended Retailer $1,679.99 View at HP (US) $1,799.99 View at Amazon $3,479 View at Walmart See all prices (6 found) Reasons to buy + Powerful components + Excellent performance + Runs quietly + Striking design Reasons to avoid – Expensive, confusing configurations – Needless software and accessories The HP Omen 30L Gaming Desktop has one significant advantage over many of its competitors: It’s quiet.

It turns on with a gentle whirr, and provides ambient white noise when you’re running demanding games.

Compare and contrast to the jet engine sounds of other modern gaming rigs, and the Omen 30L has a lot going for it, even just as an everyday productivity machine.

The HP Omen 30L also runs games beautifully, thanks to its powerful hardware and quiet cooling system.It’s expensive, though, and packed with a lot of extraneous software and accessories.Still, the HP Omen 30L Gaming Desktop is a thing of beauty: an elegant, quiet and powerful gaming PC.

Read our full HP Omen 30L Gaming Desktop review here.

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide) 6.Dell XPS 8940 The best low-key gaming PC Specifications VR-Ready: Yes (if configured properly) Processor: Up to 10th Gen Intel Core i9-10900K RAM: Up to 128 GB Graphics Card: Up to Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 Storage: Up to 2 TB SSD + 2 TB HDD Accessories: None TODAY’S BEST DEALS $1,079.99 View at Dell Check Amazon

Reasons to buy + Small, quiet design + Plenty of ports + Good performance + Physical media drive Reasons to avoid – No extremely powerful configurations – Limited storage options The Dell XPS 8940 may not look like a gaming PC, but it’s got it where it counts.

This subtle little Dell PC won a “highly recommended” honor for best gaming desktop at the Tom’s Guide Awards 2021 for gaming because it’s small, it’s quiet, it’s straightforward, it’s affordable, and it’s packed with exactly the right components you’ll need to play the latest games at a steady clip.

This is not the kind of machine you’ll buy because it lets you crank every graphical setting up to the max.Instead, it’s the kind of machine that would look perfectly at home in the most buttoned-up office, but still has enough power under the hood to tackle your favorite games after hours.The Dell XPS 8940 is the epitome of balance between work and play; you’re looking for an affordable gaming PC and don’t need all the flashy bells and whistles, it could be the perfect fit for you.

Read our full Dell XPS 8940 review .

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide) 7.Dell G5 Gaming Desktop 5090 Best gaming PC for beginners Specifications VR Ready: Yes Processor: Up to 9th Gen Intel Core i7 9700 RAM: Up to 64GB Graphics Card: Up to Nvidia RTX 2080 Storage: Up to 1TB SSD + 2TB hard drive Accessories: Dell optical mouse and multimedia keyboard TODAY’S BEST DEALS $889 View at Amazon $899 View at Amazon $1,399 View at Amazon See all prices (4 found) 28 Amazon customer reviews ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ Reasons to buy + Good productivity and gaming performance + Reasonably priced + Great chassis Reasons to avoid – Preinstalled software can be a pain – Not ideal for QHD/UHD gaming The Dell G5 5090 is one of the best gaming PCs for folks who want a solid entry level machine that’s very easy to upgrade.This fairy affordable desktop starts with a modest Core i3 processor and Nvidia GTX 1650 card, but can be outfitted with up to a Core i7 CPU and RTX 2080 GPU for more intensive gaming.

One of the G5’s biggest selling points is its sleek, foolproof chassis, which is incredibly easy to open up should you want to swap out components over time.We found Dell’s desktop to be reliable for playing AAA games at 1080p and 60 frames per second, and like that the machine comes mostly free of bloatware.Overall, if you need a good, affordable desktop that you can make more powerful over time, the Dell G5 5090 is a great choice.

Read our full Dell G5 5090 review .

(Image credit: Origin PC) 8.Origin PC Millennium A well-built gaming PC that’s pricey and powerful Specifications VR Ready: Yes Processor: Up to Intel i9-10900K or AMD Ryzen 9 5950X RAM: Up to 64GB Graphics Card: Up to Nvidia RTX 3090 or Radeon RX 6800 XT Storage: Up to 4TB NVMe; 8TB SSD; 16TB HDD Accessories: None TODAY’S BEST DEALS $2,301 View at Origin PC Check Amazon

4 Amazon customer reviews ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ Reasons to buy + Powerful hardware options + Excellent performance + Superb build quality + Super-quiet cooling Reasons to avoid – A bit too expensive for what you get – No free mouse and keyboard The Origin PC Millennium is a beautiful system with excellent hardware and solid build quality.

It can get pretty pricey, but you ultimately get what you pay for.

For about $2,300 you can get a Ryzen 5 5600X, a GeForce RTX 3060 Ti, 16GB of Corsair Vengeance RAM (3200Mhz), a 120mm all-in-one CPU cooler and a 240GB OS drive.That’s a bit expensive for what’s effectively a mid-range system configuration, and you have to provide your own peripherals since Origin doesn’t include a mouse or keyboard, but what you’ll get is a beautiful, well-built gaming PC.And as long as graphics cards remain hard to buy, a pre-built gaming PC like this is one of the most reliable ways to get your mitts on a high-end GPU.

Read our full Origin PC Millennium review .

How to choose the best gaming PC for you Price: If affordability is your concern, most decent gaming PCs start around $700 to $1,000.For that price, you’re looking at specs such as Intel Core i3 and Core i5 processors, Nvidia 1660 and 1660 Ti GPUs and 8GB to 16GB of RAM.

Performance : Think about the type of gaming experience you’re after.Game streaming services like Google Stadia can offer decent performance, but if its solid 1080p/60fps gaming you want, a machine with a decent Core i5 processor and GeForce 2060 or AMD Radeon RX 5600 GPU will get you there.Cards such as the Radeon RX 5700 and GeForce 2080 hit a nice sweet spot for dependable 1440p gaming.

Going 4K? You’ll want to spring for hardware such as an RTX 3080 or AMD RX 6800.

Upgradability : Gaming PC components are always evolving, and the best gaming PCs can be easily upgraded with new parts over time.Machines such as the Alienware Aurora and Dell G5 are easy to open up and tinker with, even for the less tech-savvy.Compact machines, such as the Corsair One, can be a bit harder to open up.So if you plan on upgrading your investment over time, keep this in mind.

VR-readiness: Want to game in VR? Requirements for headsets such as the Oculus Rift S and HTC Vive start at an Nvidia GTX 1050 Ti / AMD Radeon RX 470 GPU, an Intel Core i3 or Ryzen 3 processor, 8GB of RAM and a DisplayPort 1.2 or mini DisplayPort.Make sure your machine meets this requirements before you plunk down cash for one.

How we test the best gaming PCs In our search to find the best gaming PC, we run every model we review through a standardized gauntlet of real-world and benchmark tests, in order to measure how each desktop stacks up as both a gaming machine and as an everyday computer .

As far as hard numbers go, we currently run the framerate benchmark utilities for Shadow of the Tomb Raider, Far Cry: New Dawn, Red Dead Redemption 2 and Grand Theft Auto V at 1920 x 1080 with graphics maxed out, as well as at 2560 x 1440 and 4K if a system allows for it.On top of that, we play tons of graphics-intensive games in order to give you a sense of how these gaming desktops hold up anecdotally.

In terms of synthetic tests, we run a gamut of benchmarks that include 3DMark Fire Strike Ultra (for graphics) and Geekbench 4 and 5 (for processor performance).

We also run the SteamVR Performance Test on all of our machines to evaluate how ready they are for virtual reality.To test a system’s hard drive, we measure how fast each PC can copy 4.97GB worth of multimedia files.

Xbox Series X vs.PC : Which is right for you? Creative SXFI Gamer review The best PC games for your rig Round up of today’s best deals Corsair VENGEANCE i7200…Corsair Vengeance i7200 CORSAIR $2,349.99 View See all prices Alienware Aurora Ryzen…

Alienware Aurora R10 Dell $1,109.99 View See all prices MSI MEG Trident X 10-1282US…MSI MEG Trident X Amazon $2,449 View See all prices CORSAIR ONE PRO i200 Compact…

Corsair One Pro i200 Amazon $7,968 View See all prices Newest HP OMEN 30L Gaming…HP OMEN 30L Amazon $1,799.99 View See all prices Dell XPS Tower Special Edition Dell XPS Tower 8940 Special Edition Dell $1,079.99 View See all prices Dell Flagship G5 5000 Gaming…Dell G5 Gaming Desktop Amazon $889 View See all prices Origin Millennium Origin Millennium Origin PC $2,301 View See all prices powered by.

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