A gaming PC is essentially a desktop computer that is designed to run modern video games smoothly and efficiently for maximum enjoyment. There are quite a few differences between standard consumer PCs and those that are designed with gaming in mind.
One of the defining characteristics of a gaming PC is a high-end graphics card. These machines need a very powerful GPU in order to run modern games smoothly and without any issues. There are a number of different graphics cards, but some of them are more powerful than others.
Another thing that makes a gaming PC is a powerful CPU or processor. A high-speed, unlocked CPU is crucial for a computer to handle the sophisticated graphics of modern games. You will find that these computers also require high-end cooling systems to ensure that they do not overheat and become damaged due to the stringent demands put on them by the user. Many of these computers use water cooling systems, as they tend to work best overall.
In Intel CPU terms, a processor with a model number that ends with either an X or K is overlocked. An i7-4790 processor has a “locked” chip, but can be overclocked by simply making a few simple adjustments in the system BIOS.
RAM or memory is also a key factor in a high-end gaming PC. The RAM must be high-speed, over clocked, and heat sinked in order to accommodate the demands of modern video games. The more RAM a computer has, the better it is able to handle higher frame rates in games. These days it is very rare to see a high-end gaming machine with RAM that is not heat sinked.
A high-end audio system is yet another requirement of a good gaming PC. It is common for these machines to have very high-quality onboard and external audio DACs (Digital-to-Analog Converter). With a high-end audio setup, it is much easier for the user to immerse themselves in the games they play.
There are also some major stylistic differences between gaming PCs and regular desktop computers. Gaming computers tend to be designed to be sleeker and more colorful for a slightly futuristic aesthetic. Even the cabling for gaming machines is different than others. Gaming PCs tend to have sleeved and color-coded cables, as well as fully modular power supplies. These systems tend to have very neat and organized cables to prevent the buildup of dust. Dust buildup is the scourge of PC gamers, so it is therefore important to have cabling that isn’t all over the place.
Overall, gaming PCs tend to have much higher-end and powerful components than regular consumer computers because of the demands they have to meet on a regular basis. Running a modern video game smoothly on a PC requires a very powerful machine. You will find that gaming PCs can cost anywhere from $600 to around $2500 depending on the components inside. You don’t necessarily need to spend an obscene amount of money on a gaming PC, but you definitely get what you pay for.