The right gaming setup can make you feel more comfortable, improve your gaming performance, and possibly help your streaming career. But if you’re new to the world of PC gaming, or if you aren’t sure what your priorities should be, it can all seem complex and intimidating.
What’s the best way to build an entire gaming setup from scratch?
Setting Your Goals
Before getting started, think about your personal goals and priorities:
· Performance. How much performance will you need from this PC? Do you want to run the latest games at the highest possible graphics settings? Or are you willing to compromise?
· Comfort. How comfortable do you want to be while gaming?
· Longevity. How long do you want this setup to last? Will you need to make upgrades in the future?
· Price/budget. How much are you willing to spend on your main rig, furniture, and accessories combined?
Many online office furniture stores offer a wide selection of furniture that’s ideal for gaming. Since you’ll be seated and playing most of the time, you’ll need pieces that support good posture and keep you comfortable. Make sure you invest in a desk that supports your PC (and accessories) at a proper height – and get a chair that allows you to sit comfortably with proper posture.
The centerpiece of your gaming setup is going to be your PC. There are a variety of manufacturers that offer pre-made computers and laptops specifically designed for gaming; these are ideal if you’re willing to spend a bit of extra money for an all-in-one package that you can plug in and start playing almost immediately.
If you’re looking to save a bit of money or just have more control over the PC you build, you can also build your own PC from scratch; it’s a lot easier than it sounds. Most of the work involves plugging in the right cables and screwing in the right components.
Either way, you’ll need to consider the following variables:
· CPU. Your central processing unit (CPU) is one of the most important components of your PC. CPUs are made to process a wide variety of different tasks, with higher clock speeds associated with faster performance.
· GPU. Your graphics processing unit (GPU) is similar to a CPU, but it’s specifically designed to be very good at processing high-resolution visual content – which makes it perfect for rendering video games. The latest-generation GPUs are both expensive and hard to find, but you can often find good deals on GPUs that are almost as good.
· RAM. Random access memory (RAM) functions like your computer’s short-term memory, and it’s vital for a variety of different functions (including playing video games and streaming video). The higher the better here, to an extent. For a good gaming PC, you’ll want at least 16 GB, with 32 GB being even more powerful.
· Hard drive. The size of your hard drive will dictate how much information you can store at one time. You’ll also need to decide what type of hard drive to buy; HDDs are reliable and inexpensive, but they take forever to load. By contrast, SSDs are more expensive but support much, much faster loading.
· Monitor. You’ll also need a monitor, so you can see what you’re doing. Look for a high resolution and a high refresh rate so you can keep up with all the critical gaming action.
Of course, you’ll also need to think about the miscellaneous accessories you’ll need to put the finishing touches on your setup, including:
· Extra monitors. Once you switch to working with two (or more) monitors, you’ll never go back to using just one. Multiple monitors let you multitask more effectively and cross-reference multiple resources at the same time.
· Mouse and keyboard. Mechanical keyboards and precision mouses for gaming can make a huge difference in both your comfort and performance.
· Controller. You may also want to buy a gaming pad for games where mouse and keyboard setups aren’t ideal.
· Headphones. A good set of headphones can help you hear what’s going on in-game at all times – and an attached mic can make it easier to communicate with your teammates or viewers as well.
· Lighting. If you plan on streaming, you’ll need a professional light source to show yourself off in the best light. Otherwise, your lighting setup is purely for personal comfort.
There’s no such thing as a “perfect” gaming setup that’s a universal fit, since every individual will have different goals and priorities. However, if you take the time to evaluate your needs, set a budget for yourself, and research your best prospective options, you’ll be in a position to create a much better gaming area for yourself.