There are as many “ultimate” PC gaming set-ups as there are PC gamers – because the range of possibilities is vast and it’s such a subjective process.
Gaming mouse suggestion:
With the mouse, for example, a lot will depend on how big your hands are and whether you prefer to lay your hand flat across the mouse or hold it in a claw-like grip. However, for all-round performance, the LogitechG502 ($80) is an excellent gaming mouse, lightweight and comfortable, with fully programmable buttons. And it comes with the company’s Hero optical sensor technology for smooth seamless control.
Gaming keyboard suggestion:
For the keyboard, you’ll want a model with mechanical keys, preferably boasting Cherry MX switches. These can be noisy but are much more responsive than cheap membrane keyboards. You can pay more than $190 for a top-end Corsair or Roccat model, but the CorsairK68 ($150) is an excellent option, reliable and robustly built (complete with spill protection for when you knock over your drink mid-celebration), and offering configurable keys and lighting effects.
Gaming monitor suggestion:
As for the monitor, this will depend on your budget and the specifications of your PC. If you have a monster graphics card you might be tempted by a 4K ultrawide behemoth (which will certainly make you future-proof as more games support 4K going onwards), but that will cost way over $1,000. Most gamers will be happy with a 27-inch 1080p or 1440p display (with 1,080 and 1,440 vertical pixels respectively). It should also have no less than a 120Hz refresh rate – but preferably 144Hz – and a response time of one to four milliseconds. You also need to make sure it offers FreeSync technology, which synchronises your graphics card with your screen. If you have an Nvidia GPU you should look for that company’s G-Sync technology.
Gaming speakers suggestion:
With speakers, unless you’re an absolute audio purist or have your PC in a barn, Creative’s budget-friendly A250 set ($27) is great. Its two satellite speakers and subwoofer sound surprisingly rich and full given the mere nine watts of power. Alternatively, if you’re looking for headphones, we really like the new Turtle Beach Elite Atlas Aero headset ($130) – it’s incredibly comfortable over long periods, highly customisable and the “SuperHuman” sound system makes it easier to pick out your enemy’s movements and weapon reloads.