PC Gamers gift guide

pc gamers gift guide header 2

Winter is upon us, but not every gamer’s PC is ready for the 24/7 attention that a heavy snowfall brings. Some lack the right processor and others run sub-par GPUs that can’t handle the latest and greatest games. If any of this sounds like someone you know and love, check out our PC Gamer holiday buying guide. We’ll help you find that certain someone an awesome keyboard, mouse, set of headphones, gaming laptop, or hardcore desktop. And if that doesn’t do it for you, we also have a few ways to beef up an aging gaming rig.

SteelSeries Siberia Elite ($200)

Steelseries Siberia EliteDoes your best bud or brother complain about getting interrupted by other people while they’re gaming? That’s a problem that the SteelSeries Siberia Elite headset can fix.

Each of the Siberia Elite’s cushy ear cups surround you in sound, and have rings that light up based on the sounds emitted in game. If you’re firing a gun in-game, the rings will light up to match the sound pattern of the gun or any other sounds. This will let your girlfriend know to stay away, because you’re in the zone.

ASUS G750JX-DB71 ($1,650)

ASUS G750JX DB71Want to get something for a gamer who’s always on the go? Say hello to the Asus G750JX-DB71, a gaming laptop that can keep up with the best of them, has a roomy keyboard, and hold a charge, too. The only problem might be its weight. At 10lbs, it’s gonna leave a mark on your shoulder if you carry it too far. Still, for a gaming notebook, the Asus G750JX-DB71 is a great deal. You can snag it from Newegg for under $1,800.

Origin Millennium ($4,000)

Origin MilleniumIf you’re feeling extra generous this holiday season, consider gifting the Origin Millennium desktop PC. You can configure it at at Origin’s site, which has models starting at about $1,300, but if you want a real beast of a machine, it will cost you as much as $4,000. If you want an idea of the Millennium’s power, our unit ran Deus Ex: Human Revolution at 154fps. If that doesn’t impress you, trust us; it will impress who you’re buying this for. In the world of gaming desktops, the Millennium isn’t a bad deal, either. Competitors like the Falcon Northwest Talon and the Maingear Shift cost significantly more: nearly $4,400 and $6,000, respectively. With the Origin Millennium, you get a powerhouse rig while saving some green.

Dell Alienware X51 (2013) ($1,750)

DELL ALIENWARE X51 2013Gaming systems are bulky, but their price tags dwarf their size. If some of these price tags scare you, we feel your pain. There are slimmer gaming rigs that won’t break the bank. The Alienware X51 wears a slim chassis not commonly used with gaming PCs. However, the X51 is equipped to play, powered by an Intel Core i7 CPU, Nvidia GeForce GTX 760 Ti GPU, 16GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD paired with a 1TB hard drive. When we reviewed the X51 earlier this year, it shipped with a GTX 670 graphics card and the entire system was costly. With the 760 Ti card, the X51 now comes in under $1,800.

Logitech G400S ($40)

Logitech G400sSome gaming mice try to reinvent the wheel, often looking so futuristic they may as well be a set piece in Avatar or a small Transformer. We prefer a simpler approach. If this sounds like the gamer on your wish list, consider the Logitech G400S.

The G400s sports eight programmable buttons, an ocean-blue hue on its left and right click buttons, and a curved indent to rest your thumb. We especially like the thumb indent. Extended gaming sessions of 8 hours or more can put some stress on your hand and fingers. Any mouse that aims to decrease that stress gets a plus in our book. We’re sure your loved one would appreciate it that design touch, too. Perhaps best of all, at $60, the G400S won’t break the bank.

Logitech G510S ($80)

Logitech G510sMuch like the G400S mouse, the Logitech G510s doesn’t sport any crazy curves or jagged edges as part of its frame. What it does wield is an LCD screen at the top that displays in-game information depending on what you’re playing, which can be very helpful. If the gamer in your life doesn’t care for crazy designs and has a soft spot in their heart for relative austerity, the G510s and its combination of buttons, LCD screen, and colored back-lighting options should offer enough pizazz to wow them, while also refraining from the overly flashy design choices served up by other gaming keyboards.

AMD Radeon R290X ($600)

AMD Radeon R290XThe graphics card wars rage on between the Nvidia GeForce GTX 780 Ti and the AMD Radeon R9 290X. Both cards are supremely powerful and almost evenly matched in terms of what they offer. So why are we recommending AMD’s option over Nvidia’s? For one reason: price.

The AMD Radeon R9 290X is about $150 cheaper than the GTX 780 Ti, which is significant, especially considering that the sliver of extra performance offered by the 780 Ti doesn’t justify the increased price. If the gamer close to you is in desperate need of a GPU upgrade, you can’t do much better the the R9 290X.

Intel Core i7-4960X Processor Extreme Edition ($1,050)

Intel Core i7 4960X Processor Extreme EditionSo you’re looking to get your favorite gamer a gift that will make them freak, cry, and build statues in your honor, you’ll want to snag the Intel Core i7-4960X Processor Extreme Edition. This six-core monster is clocked at 3.6GHz and runs at 130 watts, so you should slyly ask about their rig to make sure their system can handle the power required to run it. Just say you’ve heard of the Extreme Edition and make sure they have a Socket LGA 2011 motherboard. If so, getting any gamer an Intel Core i7-4960X Processor Extreme Edition make them very happy.

Computing

Canada’s winters inspired a startup to warm homes with cryptomining heat waste

Cryptomining may be the key to untold riches and the future of currency, but it’s also an environmental nightmare. Heatmine, thinks it has the answer, but it could mean bolting a mining rig onto every home and business in the country.
Computing

Heal your wrist aches and pains with one of these top ergonomic mice

If you have a growing ache in your wrist, it might be worth considering changing up your mouse for something ergonomic. But which is the best ergonomic mouse for you? One of these could be the ticket to the right purchase for you.
Smart Home

These accessories take your already awesome Instant Pot to a whole new level

If you're familiar with the Instant Pot, you know that this bad boy acts as a pressure cooker, rice cooker, cake maker, egg boiler, and a lot more. Here are some must-have accessories to make Instant Pot cooking even better.
Computing

You could spend $1,000 on an iPhone, or buy one of these awesome laptops instead

Finding a decent laptop is easy, but finding one under $1,000 is a bit tricky. Luckily, we've taken some of the guesswork out of picking out a budget laptop. Here are some of our favorites, the best laptops under $1,000.
Computing

These laptop bags will keep your notebook secure wherever you go

Choosing the right laptop bag is no easy feat -- after all, no one likes to second-guess themselves. Here are some of the best laptop bags on the market, from backpacks to sleeves, so you can get it right the first time around.
Deals

The best MacBook deals for December 2018

If you’re in the market for a new Apple laptop, let us make your work a little easier: We hunted down the best up-to-date MacBook deals available online right now from various retailers.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Booze-filled ski poles and crypto piggy banks

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Computing

How to connect AirPods to your MacBook

If you have new AirPods, you may be looking forward to pairing them with your MacBook. Our guide will show you exactly how to connect AirPods to MacBook, what to do if they are already paired with a device, and more.
Computing

Hitting ‘Check for updates’ in Windows 10 opts you into beta releases

Users who are careful about keeping their system updated should watch out -- Microsoft revealed this week that clicking the Check for updates button in Windows can opt you in to testing beta code.
Product Review

The Asus ZenBook 14 is a tiny notebook that gets lost in the crowd

The ZenBook 14 aims to be the smallest 14-inch notebook around, and it succeeds thanks to some tiny bezels. Performance and battery life are good, but the notebook lacks a standout feature other than size.
Computing

Secure your Excel documents with a password by following these quick steps

Excel documents are used by people and businesses all over the world. Given how often they contain sensitive information, it makes sense to keep them from the wrong eyes. Thankfully, it's easy to secure them with a password.
Computing

Which Macs are compatible with MacOS Mojave?

Is your computer ready for Apple's big Mojave update? Here's what you need to know about MacOS Mojave compatibility, what Macs can successful download Mojave, and the requirements you need to know about.
Computing

Change your mouse cursor in Windows with these quick tips

The standard mouse cursor is boring, so change it! With this guide on how to change your mouse cursor in Windows, you can choose to use one of Microsoft's pre-installed cursors or download something a bit more extravagant.
Gaming

The DualShock 4 is one of the best controllers ever, and you can use it with a PC

Sony's new DualShock 4 controller has become a fan favorite, and some people want to use it with a PC. Here's how to connect your DualShock 4 and start using it, either with an official adapter, or unofficial software.