We’re not about to suggest that PC gaming is a niche hobby or anything, but you’re probably the best qualified person in your family when it comes to picking out the right gift for yourself. Sure, you can ask someone close to you to pick up a game you’ve been looking forward to playing, but if you tell your nan that you’re after a new mouse then you’re more likely to end up with a gift-wrapped rodent than something you can play CS:GO with.
It’s also been far from the perfect year for many of us. It’s high time you show yourself a little love and invest in a little hardware upgrade ahead of the holidays. There’ll be a lot of spare time to grind battle passes, reach level caps, and battle through festive events, so why wait until the 25th to get the best out of your PC gaming setup?
We’ve assembled the best of the best in PC gaming hardware and peripherals down below. So whether you’re looking for faster storage, a quality headset, or even a mousepad, there’s a little something to improve any setup.
Go on, treat yo’ self.
Razer BlackShark V2 headset
Razer’s BlackShark V2 is the best gaming headset for a reason, and why shouldn’t you treat yourself to some of the best cans around? Thanks to its 50mm TriForce Titanium drivers, you’ll clearly hear the bass, mid, and treble to pick out the footsteps of your enemies and enjoy the atmosphere. Better yet, the BlackShark V2 X makes this clarity all the more affordable if you don’t mind giving up some features, or you can go all out with the BlackShark V2 Pro.
ASUS ROG Strix Flare keyboard
Of course you can spend more on the best gaming keyboard, but this ASUS Strix Flare is one of the best for FPS games thanks to the layout and size and shape of the keycaps. Cherry MX Brown RGB switches ensure every movement and keystroke is accurate and responsive, and dedicated media controls are always a plus. Aside from the RGB customizability, there’s nothing too flashy about the Strix Flare, but rest assured this is a quality board for the price.
ADATA XPG SX8200 Pro 1TB M.2 SSD
If you’ve yet to make the leap to the best SSD for gaming then this should be top of your upgrade list. An M.2 SSD takes up almost no space in your build, delivers ludicrously quick load times in games, and this one in particular offers 1TB of storage for a price that’s still unbeaten by competitors.
Alternatively, you can make the leap all the way to the 2TB model, which means you won’t need to make a storage upgrade for a very long time.
Logitech G Pro Wireless mouse
Logitech’s G Pro was the best gaming mouse that many pros swore by, thanks to its lightweight approach and impeccable sensor. Now that there’s a wireless version that packs all the same features, however, everyone’s going cordless and you probably should, too. We know what you’re thinking, but Logitech’s wireless connectivity really is indistinguishable from a wired connection, minus the very occasional need to charge the battery. And if you really want to push the boat out and be fancy, then why not check out the G903?
Corsair Gaming MM300 Pro Extended mousepad
Upgrade your mousepad with this 930 x 300mm monstrosity that will greedily hog any spare desk space you have. All that extra space means more space to aim with in FPS games, and with a responsive, anti-fray surface you can spend hundreds of hours practicing flicks without any signs of wear and tear. It’s spill-proof, too! Our deputy editor Jordan has been using one of these for a couple of years and swears by it.
Cooler Master MasterLiquid RGB CPU Liquid Cooler
Liquid cooling doesn’t have to be daunting thanks to all-in-one solutions like this model from Cooler Master. It’s one of the best CPU coolers out there, and there are three different size options, superb RGB lighting, and some low temperatures to help wring every last drop of performance out of your processor.
Razer Kiyo Webcam
Whether you want to stream professionally or simply improve your Zoom aesthetic, a good quality webcam is always handy. The Razer Kiyo combines 60fps capture with a bright ring light, so you don’t need to worry about setting up extra lights to get a decent picture while streaming.
Razer Seiren Mini microphone
Digital conversations have quickly become the norm, whether you’re catching up with your loved ones this holiday or raging at your teammates for throwing the match. Headsets can help with their built-in microphone but nothing tops the quality of a dedicated desktop mic. Shout at your family and show your love to your five stack with clarity this Christmas – or is it the other way around?
You’ll have to head over to the Razer Store if the Seiren Mini scratches that audio itch, as it’s not yet available on Amazon.
Upgrading your keyboard’s keycaps? Sounds absurd, doesn’t it? Until you realise just how much sturdier PBT keycaps are over the generic ABS version. And it’s difficult to deny just how sweet HyperX’s Pudding or G.Skill’s Crystal Crown keycaps look when the RGB lights bleed through them. If you need us, we’ll be resisting the urge to take a bite every time we look down.
FlexiSpot Adjustable Standing Desk
Many of us are spending an increasing amount of time at our desks, whether it’s making the most of Cyberpunk 2077 or simultaneously working from home and diving into our favourite hobby in the evening. Instead of wearing back pain like a badge of honor, however, why not get comfortable by introducing a FlexiSpot adjustable standing desk into the mix so you can get the best of both worlds?