Flash Sale! to get a free eCookbook with our top 25 recipes.

The best gaming PCs in 2022

The best gaming PCs are powerful enough to play the most resource-demanding and graphically-intensive games in the biggest and most elegant form factor possible. Of course, these gaming rigs also tend to come with the highest price tags in the PC market.

A powerful gaming PC is a huge investment but it pays off in a variety of ways. In addition to experiencing games at blazing fast frame rates and ultra-high resolution, you can also use your premium-priced PC for graphic design, animation, streaming movies in glorious 4K on your TV or simply to get work done.

With next-gen consoles in 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 for these consoles to be back in stock; you can have the best gaming desktops right now.

Plus, unlike a console, you can upgrade PCs as better components become 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, maybe with a PC that has this weird breathing case. Read on, and we’ll help you find your next great gaming machine. 

What are the best gaming PCs right now?

Due to 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, 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, if you can afford it the Maingear Turbo is a beast of a machine that runs quiet and looks great on a desk. It’s smaller than most full-size gaming PCs, so it’s easy to squeeze into your desk or entertainment center setup. 

If you’re buying a machine for someone who’s new to gaming PCs (even if that someone is you), we recommend the Acer Predator Orion 3000. This relatively affordable gaming rig can be had for under $2k, yet packs enough power to play the latest games at 1080p or even 1440p. Plus, the case is small, stylish, and easy to open, which will come in handy for upgrades down the road. Just be aware that this machine struggles with 4K gaming.

If you’d rather buy a pre-built gaming PC 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. It’s not going to break any performance records, but it plays the latest games well and its drab, RGB-less case will blend right in with your office.

The best gaming PCs you can buy

(Image credit: Corsair)

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

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 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.

Read our full Corsair Vengeance i7200 review.

Acer Predator Orion 3000 on a desk, viewed front on

(Image credit: Future)

Best gaming PC for first-timers

Specifications

VR Ready: Yes

Processor: Up to Intel Core i7

RAM: 16GB

Graphics Card: Up to Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 Ti

Storage: Up to 1TB HDD, 1TB SSD

Accessories: Predator wired keyboard and gaming mouse, both w/ customizable RPGB lighting

Reasons to buy
+

Stylish design looks good on a desk

+

Easy to open and upgrade

+

Quiet, even while gaming

+

Great 1080p performance

Reasons to avoid

Underwhelming performance vs. competition

Low-quality keyboard and mouse

The Acer Predator Orion 3000 ($829 to start, $1,949 as reviewed) is a mid-sized gaming PC that’s attractive, (relatively) affordable, and great for playing games at 1080p to 1440p.

It’s not a great choice if you’re looking to play games at 4K, however, and its packed-in keyboard and mouse leave much to be desired. The Orion 3000 also fared slightly worse in our suite of performance tests than some similarly-priced gaming PCs, perhaps because our review unit arrived with just 16GB of RAM.

The case is well-organized and easy to open though, so it should be pretty easy to upgrade this machine with more RAM when you need it. With its sub-$2,000 price, beefy components, and stylish, accessible case, Acer’s Predator Orion 3000 is a great first gaming PC for someone looking to get into the hobby.

Read our full Acer Predator Orion 3000 review.

Maingear Turbo PC sitting on a desk

(Image credit: Future)

Best compact gaming PC

Specifications

VR Ready: Yes

Processor: Up to AMD Ryzen 9 5950X

RAM: Up to 16GB

Graphics Card: Up to Nvidia GeForce RTX 3090

Storage: Up to 2TB SSD x 3

Accessories: None

Reasons to buy
+

Incredible performance in a miniscule footprint

+

Whisper-quiet, even under heavy load

+

Stunning design looks great on a desk

Reasons to avoid

Limited upgrade potential

Can get very expensive, even for a gaming rig

The Maingear Turbo ($2,162 to start, $7,199 as reviewed) is a juggernaut. Blistering speeds befitting the name are coupled with a dizzying price tag, as the bespoke PC vendor has packed the most powerful (and expensive) hardware available into this singular machine.

But Maingear takes it one step further, packing top-tier components into a compact chassis that delivers performance in a fraction of the space, silently. You might get a bit better bang for your buck looking at other options on this list, or building your own. But what’s exciting about the Turbo is that if you have the cash, you can get Maingear to trick one out with the latest and greatest components — including the company’s eye-catching APEX cooling system.

Admittedly, the Turbo’s small, stylish case isn’t easy to poke around in once you fill it up with a cooling system, a giant GPU and some storage drives. But if you have cash to burn and just want a quiet, stylish PC that can run all the latest games at blistering-fast framerates, this is the gaming rig for you.

Read our full Maingear Turbo review.

best gaming PCs: Alienware Aurora Ryzen Edition R10 (2021)

(Image credit: Alienware)

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

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.

Best gaming pcs: MSI MEG Trident X

(Image credit: MSI)

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

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.

Best gaming pcs: Corsair One Pro i200

(Image credit: Corsair)

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

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 programmable 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.

Best gaming pcs: HP Omen 30L Gaming Desktop

(Image credit: HP)

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

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.

best gaming pcs: Dell XPS 8940

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

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

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 is small, quiet, straightforward, affordable, and 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.

Best gaming pcs: Dell G5 5090

(Image credit: Tom’s Guide)

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

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

Best gaming PCs: Origin PC Millennium

(Image credit: Origin PC)

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

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 requirement 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.