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Gaming Desktop Buying Guide: 7 Things You Need to Know

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You’ve decided that you want to play Assassin’s Creed Origins or Star Wars Battlefront II in glorious 4K, or you’re ready to make the leap into virtual reality. But wait! What PC are you going to buy? What graphics card or CPU should you get? And what about the tower size and upgradability?

Before you invest a bunch of money in a new gaming system, take a gander at our guide for the ins and outs of buying a gaming desktop.

Quick Tips
Chomping at the bit to buy that new gaming desktop, so much so that you don’t have time to go through the guide? Here’s the TL;DR version.

1. Get an AMD 500 series or Nvidia 10 series GPU if you can afford it. This will let you play the latest games at silky smooth frame rates.

2. $1,000 is the sweet spot for gaming desktops. But starting at around $699, you can get a decent rig that will have entry- to mid-level specs.

3. Buy a VR-ready system, if you can. This will future-proof your purchase should you decide to get an Oculus Rift or HTC Vive.

4. Opt for an upgrade-friendly design when possible. Look for a system that you can open using few or no tools.

5. Plan to replace some parts in the future. A new GPU or SSD is easy to install and much cheaper than buying a new PC.

6. Don’t buy a smaller form factor unless you’re fine with purchasing another unit in two to three years. There’s only so much you can upgrade in a smaller system, so try to get a PC on which the CPU, RAM and GPU can be replaced.

7. Make sure you get USB Type-C and Thunderbolt ports. This will give you the bandwidth to connect two 4K monitors at once.

Source: tom’s guide

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