Desktop computers and the gaming PC can both run your favorite operating system, word processing programs and allow you to check email, browse the Internet and check your Facebook. But when it comes to playing games, a gaming computer excels.

Gaming is resource intensive.

When you open up your favorite PC game, a lot happens:

  • Textures are loaded into memory
  • Processing requirements increase
  • Graphics cards are put into overdrive

A desktop PC can play games, too, but there are a lot of games that won’t run well – if at all. There are a few reasons for this:

  • Low RAM (memory)
  • On-board graphics controllers

High performance is required to meet the demands of modern games.

What Makes a PC Ideal for Gaming?

When you purchase or build a gaming computer, you’ll fire up a computer that is able to meet the demands of games and internal components. A lot of gamers underestimate the toll running Deux Ex: Mankind Divided or even Battlefield 1 takes on their computer.

The processor goes into overdrive, the graphics card works harder, and all of this causes the internal heat of the computer amp up.

Heat is the main reason for hard drive failure and can cause processor degradation if allowed to get too hot.

A gaming computer meets these demands through:

  • High-end Cooling: Internal temperatures are kept at bay through non-stock CPU coolers, additional fans and even hard drive cooling. Liquid cooling is present on high-end gaming PCs and will keep temperatures cool even during hours of gameplay.
  • Top-of-the-Line Graphics Cards: High-end graphics cards are a must-have. Not only are these graphics cards able to use the latest rendering technology, but they also have their own processing unit and RAM. Dedicated RAM and processing allows for less limitations and demand on the CPU and RAM.
  • Loads of RAM: Memory, or random access memory, stores information that can be accessed faster than reading from a hard disk. The more RAM, the better when gaming. Games will store important, frequent data into RAM so that games run faster and more efficiently.
  • High-end CPU: Fast, top-of-the-line processors will be used to help process game information. Overclocked CPUs that push speed boundaries are often used in gaming PCs to push the PC’s limitations on demanding games.

Additional components require larger power supply units, so a gaming PC will certainly have a larger wattage unit than a standard PC. The PSU can be 1600 watts, or it can be 700 watts or lower, depending on the gamer’s needs.

When you use a gaming PC versus a standard desktop PC, your games will run better. A metric most commonly used when discussing performance is frames per second, or fps. The higher the fps, the better.

See, when graphics become intense, the fps rate will fall, causing the graphics to be suboptimal.

If playing an MMORPG, this can mean the game stuttering or slower response time from the gamer. Higher fps rates allow for better performance and smoother gameplay.

Do you need a Core I7 processor with 32 gigs of RAM and a NVIDIA Titan X or GeForce GTX1080 to play every game? No.

The difference may be negligible when playing a game, such as World of Warcraft or Final Fantasy XIV. But, you will notice a major difference when playing graphic intensive games, like Witcher 3, that push the limits of modern computers.