Sat. Jun 10th, 2023

Buying a gaming PC doesn’t have to be a painful experience. Opting for a prebuilt configuration from brands like HP, MSI, or Alienware is a great way to get the most value out of your gaming PC. You can nail down a budget and select the configuration that gives you the best components for the price. 

Building a PC is simple enough, but it can be intimidating to new PC gamers and frustrating for gaming veterans who don’t want to deal with shipping delays on individual components. And contrary to popular belief, having a high-end GPU like an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3090 doesn’t mean your new gaming PC is automatically the best; what counts is the CPU and how much RAM and storage your configuration has. Because even an older GTX 1660 Super or RTX 2070 is still capable of running demanding triple-A titles.

Gaming and office PCs alike use either Intel or AMD processors and compatible components, and it used to be that Intel was the clearly superior choice. But with the new Ryzen 6000 CPUs and GPUs, AMD has proven that it is capable of serious power. If you want to know more about the different CPUs available for gaming PCs, you can check out our list of the best gaming CPUs.

I’ve combed the web to find the best gaming PCs available at just about every price point, and I’ve broken down their features and best-use cases to help you choose the best one that fits both your budget and your needs.

Also: The best gaming laptops: Top rigs for on-the-go gaming


  • Liquid cooling
  • RTX 3080 GPU
  • Dual storage drives

  • Pricey
  • Design won’t appeal to everyone

CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 5900 | GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 | RAM: 32GB | Power supply: 850W | Storage: 1TB SSD and 2TB HDD | Cooling system: Liquid 

The Alienware Aurora R14 Ryzen Edition is the best gaming PC you can buy right now. It’s built with an AMD Ryzen 9 5900 CPU and Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 graphics card for all the power you need to play the hottest triple-A titles and most graphically demanding games. And with dual storage drives, you’ll have plenty of space for your entire game library plus room to grow. A liquid cooling system works with the pre-installed fans to draw waste heat away from components, keeping everything running at optimal temperatures for better performance and power efficiency. The chassis also sports a unique, rounded design to stand out from the rest of the box-style, midsize towers on the market. And with tool-less access, it’s easy to open up the tower to clean out fans, reroute cables, or upgrade components.


  • Premium-grade components
  • Tons of configuration options
  • Compact footprint
  • Quick-access hinged door

  • Very expensive
  • Compact size makes upgrading and cooling difficult

CPU: Intel Core i7-12700K | GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 Ti | RAM: 32GB | Power supply: 650W | Storage: Up to 4TB SSD and 2TB HDD | Cooling system: Air 

Twitch streamers and YouTube lets players need PCs that can not only handle the hottest triple-A games but also professional-grade photo and video editing software and live-streaming apps. The MSI MEG Trident X is an almost perfect choice for content creators, featuring a 12th generation Intel Core i7 processor, Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 Ti graphics card, 32GB of RAM, and a 1TB SSD. There are configurations that give you up to two SSDs as well as a traditional hard disk drive, but be prepared to fork over a hefty wad of cash to get it. However, full-time content creators will appreciate the investment, since the premium configurations will give them all the power and storage they’ll need for years to come. The Trident X also has an incredibly compact footprint, making it easy to tuck away on a shelf or a desk corner or to mount on a wall to stay out of the way while you record or edit videos. The hinged side door makes accessing fans and components fast and easy, while the front of the tower features USB 3.2, USB-C, and audio inputs for quicker setup of external memory storage, peripherals, and audio equipment.


  • Under $1500
  • Wi-Fi 6 support
  • Keyboard and mouse included
  • RTX 3050 graphics card

  • White case shows dirt and dust
  • No Thunderbolt support

CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 5600G | GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 | RAM: 8GB | Power supply: 600W | Storage: 512GB SSD | Cooling system: Air

Buying a pre-built gaming PC with higher-end components doesn’t have to cost you a fortune. The HP Omen 25L is built with an AMD Ryzen 5 5600G processor, RTX 3050 GPU, a 512GB SSD, and 8GB of RAM to let you keep up with all the hottest triple-A releases. It also supports Wi-Fi 6 for blazing fast and reliable wireless internet speeds, so online lag is virtually gone. And with Bluetooth connectivity, you can set up wireless peripherals like headsets, mice, and keyboards for a custom battle station. It also has 3 USB-C ports for faster data transfer speeds and more reliable connectivity for peripherals and storage devices. And RGB lighting within the case lets you show off your personal style or sync with other RGB components and peripherals. The Omen 25L also comes bundled with a keyboard and mouse so you can get started playing your favorite games right out of the box.


  • Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 GPU
  • 13th gen Intel Core i9 CPU
  • Liquid cooling
  • Dual storage drives

  • Very, very expensive
  • No peripherals bundled with it

CPU: Intel Core i9-13900K | GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 | RAM: 32GB | Power supply: 1000W | Storage: Up to 2TB SSD and 2TB HDD | Cooling system: Liquid

The Nvidia RTX 4090 graphics card released on Oct. 12 2022 with a retail price of around $1600. The high price and demand for the GPU mean that one of the few reliable (and financially practical) ways to get your hands on one is to get a pre-built gaming PC equipped with one. The MSI Infinite RS is built with the RTX 4090, placing it in the very top tier of gaming PCs. With 24GB of VRAM as well as 32GB of DDR5 RAM, you’ll get an incredibly fast and smooth gaming experience. 

The Infinite RS also comes equipped with an Intel Core i9-13900K for the ultra-high performance needed for the most graphically demanding game titles. The tower is liquid cooled for more efficient heat dissipation, and the dual storage drives give you plenty of space for your Steam, Origin, or Epic store library. But all of this comes at a pretty steep price: with such high-end and powerful components, be prepared to shell out almost $5,000 for the tower alone.


  • Up to 22TB of storage
  • Premium CPU and GPU
  • Air and liquid cooling

  • Staggeringly expensive
  • Long lead time for custom building

CPU: Intel Core i7-12900K | GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3090 | RAM: 64GB | Power supply: 1000W | Storage: Up to 22TB | Cooling system: Air/liquid

As game downloads consistently hit the 100+ gigabyte mark, prioritizing storage is important if you have a large library of games. The Velztrom Rivex is a totally customizable rig that lets you add up to 22TB of storage split between M.2 SSDs and traditional hard-disk drives. Though all that space comes at a cost: A fully kitted Rivex from Velztrom’s website with four 2TB M.2 SSDs, a 2TB SATA SSD, and two 6TB HDDs will cost you almost $5800. The good news is that you can buy much more affordable configurations through retailers like Amazon and Newegg. And while you won’t get quite as much storage, you can still choose a configuration with up to 10TB of total storage space. And with so many storage drive slots, it’s easy to add more SSD or HDD units as you need them.

And this PC is more than just storage. It’s also built with an Intel Core i9-12900K CPU, RTX 3090 graphics card, and up to 64GB of RAM for all of the power and performance you need for the latest triple-A and VR titles.

The best gaming PC is the Alienware Aurora Ryzen R14 due to its superior CPU, RAM, GPU, and storage.

Gaming PC




Alienware Aurora R14 Ryzen


AMD Ryzen 9 5900

Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080

MSI MEG Trident X


Intel Core i7-12700K

Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 Ti

HP Omen 25L


AMD Ryzen 5 5600G

Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050

MSI Infinite RS


Intel Core i9-13900K

Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090

Velztorm Rivex custom


Intel Core i9-12900K

Nvidia GeForce RTX 3090

The snarky answer is the one you can afford. But jokes aside, other than price, you want to pay close attention to how much RAM and storage a configuration has. You want to choose a prebuilt PC that has at least 8GB of RAM and a storage drive (either a solid-state drive or a traditional hard disk drive) with no less than 256GB of space. 

The graphics card model in your build isn’t as important as RAM, since the system memory is what actually renders game assets. And the GPU acts as a turbo booster for regular RAM, so you can feel comfortable buying a configuration that has an older GPU, like a GTX 1660 Super or an RTX 2080, knowing that it will still let you play all but the most technically demanding titles.

Choose this gaming PC…

If you need…

Alienware Aurora R14 Ryzen Edition

A well-rounded gaming PC with a powerful processor and GPU

MSI MEG Trident X

A gaming PC for content creators

HP Omen 25L

A more affordable, pre-built gaming PC

MSI Infinite RS

A pre-build gaming PC with an RTX 4090 GPU

Velztorm Rivex custom

A gaming PC that prioritizes storage

I chose these gaming PCs because they offer a great balance between price and components. Higher-end models, like the Alienware Aurora Ryzen R14, come with top-of-the-line components to give you a gaming PC that will last for years before you need to think about upgrading. Others, like the HP Victus desktop, are more budget-friendly options for folks who either are new to PC gaming or who aren’t worried about trying to keep up with the latest triple-A games.

You can absolutely find a budget-friendly (around $1,000 is considered “budget” when it comes to prebuilt gaming desktops and laptops) gaming computer that is going to have the storage space and processing power for just about any game. You can save money on a prebuilt or custom build by opting for an older GPU (when you can get them). While they aren’t the newest, shiniest tech, they still have plenty of juice to run a lot of triple-A titles at decent settings. 

You also can save by choosing a configuration with less RAM and storage, since you can often swap them out yourself later; this lets you take advantage of component sales that work with your overall budget. Make sure you check your gaming laptop though, since they can sometimes have soldered RAM sticks that cannot be removed or changed out.

For most games, either 8GB or 16GB of RAM is going to be plenty to get a smooth experience. You can find configurations with upwards of 128GB of RAM, and while this would certainly give you more system memory for very technically and graphically demanding games, you are never going to be able to take full advantage of so much RAM (unless you’re an animator or professional content creator).

It can be. Gaming PCs are one of those things that you can spend as little or as much on as you want. Prebuilt gaming desktops and laptops are great for anyone who either doesn’t have time to build or isn’t comfortable with building a gaming computer. They’re also more expeditious since you don’t have to wait for individual components to ship (and hopefully not get damaged in transit). 

Building a gaming PC yourself does give you the opportunity to save a bit of cash since you can plan your build around component sales. Just make sure you aren’t mixing AMD and Intel components; they won’t communicate with each other. Building one yourself also allows you to create a PC that exactly fits your needs, since you aren’t likely to buy components you won’t utilize fully, such as HDDs or SSDs with more than 2TB of space, more than 16GB of RAM, or a super-advanced motherboard that has features you won’t ever use, etc. 

It’s all about balancing your budget with how convenient you want buying a gaming PC to be or how comfortable you are with building computers.

Unless you have high-end, power hungry components like the new RTX 4090 graphics card, liquid cooling your PC can be overkill. However, a liquid cooling system is more efficient at drawing away waste heat than traditional, air-cooling fan systems. And with the advent of all-in-one cooling systems, first-time builders can liquid-cool their gaming rigs without the fear of leaks; but the AIO systems are meant to focus on single components like CPUs or graphics cards. 

If you want to liquid cool your entire rig, you’ll need a custom cooling system, including: a radiator, plenty of tubing, coolant pumps, and an exhaust fan. DIY PC pros can set up intricate liquid cooling systems to maintain optimal temperatures while also showing off their personal style with colored coolant, RGB lights, and copper tubing.

Both intake and exhaust fans are important for maintaining proper airflow. Ideally, you want to have an equal number of both to have even dissipation of waste heat and intake of fresh, cool air. However, if your case isn’t set up for that many fans, it’s better to have more exhaust fan units to draw out waste heat, which will make it easier for the intake fans to draw in fresh air.

Cleaning your gaming PC is important to allow for proper air flow in order to cool components and to prevent electrical fires and malfunctions. The quickest and easiest way to clean your PC is to open up the case and use a can of compressed air, like what you use to get crumbs out of your keyboard, to remove loose dust and debris. If your PC components need a more thorough cleaning, you can use either rubbing alcohol and cotton swabs to gently clean away stubborn dirt or a can of CRC electronics cleaner. Both rubbing alcohol and the electronics cleaner are safe for connections and circuitry, so you can thoroughly clean components without fear of ruining them.

There are tons of options out there for prebuilt gaming PCs. Below is a list of runner-ups that, while they’re great computers, might not appeal to everyone. Some are quite expensive or more suited to creative professionals or from brands that are less well-known. 

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