Building a gaming PC is almost as satisfying as actually playing games on it—maybe more. The feeling of setting a fresh CPU into its socket, the sensual snap of the RAM sticks, that moment you realise you have no screw for the freaking M.2 slot you just filled. Makes you want to build one right now, doesn’t it?There are an infinite number of ways to configure and design a gaming PC, and so to inspire each other and our readers, we thought we’d take a look at how members of the PC Gamer team have approached the hobby.No matter the contents, there’s a lot of love here. A love of all things gaming, and of the tech that makes all those frames per second possible. Here’s what PC Gamer is gaming on today—you can decide if the confidence in our writing reflects in our rigs, or whether we’re maybe compensating for something.Lauren Aitken – Deputy guides editor(Image credit: Future)Lauren’s PC specsCPU: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-9700F CPU @ 3.00GHzGraphics card: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 SuperMotherboard: ASUS ROG STRIX B360-H GamingRAM: VENGEANCE® LPX 32GB (2 x 16GB) DDR4 DRAM 2666MHz C16 MemorySSD: Samsung SSD 970 EVO plus 500GBHDD: Seagate BarraCuda 5TB 2.5″ Hard Disk Drive/HDDPSU: 850W Corsair RMx Series RM850xCase: Corsair Carbide 275Q Quiet Black Midi Tower Gaming CaseDisplays: Dell U2415x2Keyboard: Mountain Everest 60Mouse: Logitech G305 Lightspeed wireless mouseHeadphones: Beats by Dr Dre on-ear headphones Tell us about your computerI tried and failed to get my paws on a 3070 midway through the pandemic and was kindly sent this fairly impressive rig upon joining Future. I previously had an RTX 2060, so the jump to 2070 Super was nice and this bad boy is lightning fast for loading things. The big HDD means I can horde many cat photos, screenshots and questionable memes. The only downside is that, unlike my previous PC, there isn’t a glass panel with lots of RBG lights.What are you playing?As the Deputy Guides Editor, I could be playing literally anything, from Fortnite to Destiny 2 to Crusader Kings 3. I like to keep it spicy.What upgrade are you planning next?My screens are definitely a little old so would like to upgrade those, as well as install a glass side and some lights to keep in with my RGB/ chaos theme of my office. I like having the two landscape monitors though so will probably get two or possibly a third since I’m that kind of nerd.Imogen Mellor – Features Producer(Image credit: Future)Imogen’s PC specsCPU: Ryzen 5 3600XGraphics card: RTX 2070Motherboard: MSI X570-A ProRAM: Corsair Vengeance RGB PRO 32 GB (2 x 16 GB)SSD: SanDisk Ultra HDD: Toshiba HDWD130 3TBPSU: I’ve forgotten and don’t want to open my case lmao Case: Cooler Master H400Displays: An ASUS VG245 and AOC Gaming 24G2U5/BKKeyboard: Logitech G815Mouse: Razer Naga TrinityHeadphones: I don’t want to talk about itStreaming gear:Elgato Ring LightElgato Stream DeckElgato HD60 S+ Capture CardElgato Wave 1 MicrophoneRODE PSA1 Mic StandSony a6000Elgato Cam LinkTell us about your computerLet me take you back to Imogen at university. This young, fresh thing had dreams of getting into games journalism, but had not ever owned a gaming PC. She decided it was time to spend the final dregs of her student loan and personal savings on a set up so she could be taken seriously, and so googled ‘how to build a PC’. I found a website that recommended a decent set up, and not knowing anything about PCs or what I wanted from one, I bought all the components and put it together. It’s not perfect but honestly, it’s been a great workhorse throughout my career, my streaming, and even has a smidge of RPG inside. It sits on my desk proudly, though obscured by a PS5, and even without knowing a thing about PC building, the cable management is pretty lush.What are you playing?Anything I need to for work. That’s Elden Ring, indie games, Ghostwire: Tokyo, Dying Light 2. Literally anything except horror games. Oh and an embarrassing amount of Overwatch.What upgrade are you planning next?I’m kind of hoping to build a new PC entirely soon and run both as part of a streaming set up. Alternatively, I need a nicer non-budget monitor at some point, and probably should get a second hard drive. Nat Clayton – Features ProducerNat’s gaming setup. (Image credit: Future)Nat’s PC specsCPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3600Graphics card: RTX 2070 SuperMotherboard: ASRock X570 Phantom Gaming 4 ATXRAM: 2x8GB Crucial Ballistix RGB 3600 DDR4SSD: WD Blue SN550 1TB High-Performance M.2 PCIe NVMeHDD: No.PSU: Corsair RM750 Case: NZXT H510Displays: Acer, uh, somethingKeyboard: Steelseries Apex [RAW]Mouse: Steelseries Rival Headphones: Logitech G432Tell us about your computer.I hate building computers. Nothing stresses me out more than shopping for PC parts and putting them together, so when tasked with replacing my ageing student PC the other year, I gave my smartest friends a budget and told them to figure it out.I lucked out on the timing, and while buying a 20-series card just before the 30-series came out was a bit of a pain, it also pre-empted the great GPU drought so I cannae be too upset. Besides, it runs everything I’ve thrown at it pretty much flawlessly, and the upgrade from a 1080 screen to a 1440 was enough of a jump that I don’t think my eyes could handle 4K even if they wanted it.Otherwise, I’m not too fussed about making a statement with my setup. The rig sits in a white box under the desk with only a couple unintentional RGBs. The monitors and peripherals try to avoid the jagged glowing gamer gear aesthetic as much as possible. It works, and that’s enough.What are you playing?Literally only Apex Legends.What upgrade are you planning next?I guess I should probably get a drive with some actual bloody storage space. 1TB doesn’t go very far these days.Phil Savage – Editor-in-ChiefPhil’s gaming setup. (Image credit: Future)Phil’s PC specsCPU: Ryzen 7 3700X Graphics card: ASYS RTX 3080 Ti ROG StrixMotherboard: MSI MPG X570 GAMING PLUSRAM: 2x16GB Corsair DDR4 VengeanceSSD: 1TB Samsung 970 EVO NVMe M.2, 2TB Samsung 860 EVOHDD: WD Black 2TBPSU: 850W Corsair RMx Series RM850xCase: Fractal Design Meshify CDisplays: Asus PG279Q 27-inch, Dell U2410 24-inchKeyboard: Razer Blackwidow ChromaMouse: Razer Deathadder V2Headphones: HyperX Cloud Alpha ProTell us about your computer.About halfway through 2020, I decided I needed a new CPU. My i5-6600K was feeling a bit long in the tooth, and, with a new generation of consoles on the way, it seemed like a good time to prepare for the inevitable jump in system requirements. The thing is: you don’t just upgrade a CPU. I also needed a new, compatible motherboard.And if I’m doing that, I may as well replace my increasingly shabby Fractal Design Define R3 case—its top USB ports long since broken—with something a bit more modern. By the end of my spending spree all that remained were the graphics card and the PSU. A year later, they were gone too. I still maintain that this was an upgrade rather than a new build, and not even Plato will convince me otherwise.The peripherals are mostly older. Back in 2016 I invested in a 165Hz 1440p monitor, and I’ve no intention of moving up to 4K anytime soon. My second monitor is older still: a 16:10 ratio Dell that does the job as a second screen. I also recently augmented my Razer Chroma keyboard and mouse with the accompanying RGB mousepad. They all flash in sync, which makes me happier than it should.What are you playing?Currently I’m mostly bouncing between Destiny 2 and Guild Wars 2, with vague plans to finally start Elden Ring sometime soon. “Neither of those games need an RTX 3080 Ti,” you say? This may be true, but I would suggest that my decision to buy one was neither rational nor good. But I was able to find one during the worst of the GPU drought, and I wasn’t about to let reason or common sense get in my way.What upgrade are you planning next?I’m not. Unless something breaks, I’ll not be touching it again for years.Jacob Ridley – Senior Hardware EditorJacob’s personal rig. (Image credit: Future)Jacob’s PC specsCPU: AMD Ryzen 7 5800XGraphics card: AMD Radeon RX 6900 XTMotherboard: MSI MPG X570 GodlikeRAM: 32GB (4x 8GB) Corsair Vengeance DDR4 @ 2,666MHzSSD: WD Black SN750 1TB, Samsung 870 QVO 1TB, Addlink SATA 1TB, Crucial P2 500GB, Samsung PV128 128GBHDD: NonePSU: EVGA 850W Gold G2Case: Corsair iCUE 5000T RGBDisplays: Gigabyte M28U + Asus XG32VQKeyboard: Logitech G915 Wireless (clicky)Mouse: Logitech G Pro Wireless SuperlightHeadphones: Sennheiser HD 650Tell us about your computer.Being a hardware journo I tend to find my PC build is on a constant rotation of parts. I receive a steady churn of new headsets, keyboards, coolers, and other components that require testing, and there’s no better trial by fire for review than using them yourself for a week or two. It’s a perk of the job playing with all the latest gear, though I am running out of storage space for cardboard boxes at an alarming rate.That said, there are some PC peripherals I always return to. I’m so used to typing on my clicky Logitech G915 wireless keyboard that I find it weird to type on anything taller nowadays. I still have a soft spot for the Topre Realforce, however. Similarly, the Logitech G Pro is my go-to mouse, so much so that I’m starting to wear down its matt finish to a shiny plastic.For audio, I always have my Sennheiser HD 650 headphones at the ready with my Schiit DAC and amp combo, though a set of Logitech G560 speakers are useful in a pinch. I also have a Loupedeck on hand at all times and really rate my trusty Rode PSA-1 boom arm.What are you playing?I’m a Hunt: Showdown man and have been for over a year now. That game takes up most of my time as I’ve usually a friend online keen to play a round or two. Though I sometimes dip my toes back into Destiny 2, and I regularly plug in a racing wheel for some F1 2021 action.What upgrade are you planning next?I could do with a faster RAM kit, as my four sticks are from two different sets that have to run slightly slower than advertised for stability. Though I’m also eyeing up a larger 1000+ Watt PSU so that I can slip this 850W one into a test machine.Lauren Morton – Associate Editor(Image credit: Future)Lauren’s PC specsCPU: Intel Core i7-8700KGraphics card: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 SuperMotherboard: ASUS PRIME Z370-A IIRAM: 32GB (4x 8GB) G.Skill DDR4 SDRAMSSD: 500GB WD Black SN750 NVMe SSD HDD: 2TB WD & 6TB SanDiskPSU: Some 1000w EVGACase: NZXT H710 WhiteDisplays: 2x ASUS VN279QL 27″ and 1 Asus TUF Gaming VG27AQ 27″Keyboard: Steelseries Apex 7 TKL GhostMouse: Steelseries Aerox 3Headphones: The earbuds that came with my phone, I’m sorry.Tell us about your computer.My rig is relatively flashy and new these days, but I’ll always consider it the shambling facelift of my first pre-built dedicated gaming PC in 2013—which I treated myself to after suffering through the first year of Guild Wars 2 on a bootcamped Mac laptop.I’ve never done a complete rebuild, so even though none of the internal parts still exist from that first machine, I’ve always replaced things piecemeal (actually, one of my monitors was from 2013 until a week ago). I’ve never been one for cutting edge upgrades, owing to an indecisive personality, so my system is ever a couple years behind the latest tech.Aesthetically, I’ve finally arrived at an almost entirely crisp white and black setup with all my RGBs (RAM, GPU, motherboard, mouse, keyboard) set to cool blues.I’ve also finally subscribed to proper cable management inside and outside my machine after about a decade of being a chaotic cable jungle gamer. My main extravagance is my three monitors. I don’t know why I wound up here, but I cannot ever go back.What are you playing?At the moment, mostly Elden Ring. After the initial hype passes, I’ll likely be back to Red Dead Online or whatever low-spec indie game becomes the new co-op hotness. What upgrade are you planning next?I was planning to finally ditch my two auxiliary monitors, the much older, huge bezel ASUS creatures I had before. Then I went ahead and did that right before writing in with my specs. I now finally have a 140Hz and 2K monitor as my main display. The next thing on my list is getting rid of the two hulking HDD storage drives I have so I can finally be entirely on SSD storage.