A gaming pc for my birthday

Just received the following e-mail from my 12 year old grandson.

I’m looking at getting a gaming pc for my birthday so I can play games like apex legends and call of duty do you have any recommendations for what to get?

I’m not even sure where to start !!

I’ve written down
PC v Mac
Laptop v Desktop
Embedded v Separate (graphics card)
PS5 + School computer v Games Computer

I think the word i’m looking for is "help !"

Nightmare Don

I just gave up on a system build. To get a PC at the same spec as one of the new consoles (PS5 or Xbox series X) you need to spend a minimum of £1500 vs £450 for the consoles!

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Thats a tough one…i am sure somebody on the forum can point you in the right direction🤞🏽

Having a quick look at ‘scan’ for their gaming computers, and the prices look like £1k minimum, I would say get a ps4; there are plenty of top games like uncharted (which isn’t allowed for a 12 yr old, same for call of duty!) for under £10. And a chromebook for schoolwork. His parents can then restrict access to the playstation when its schoolwork time!

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Somebody asked a similar question a couple of weeks ago. I posted a screenshot of scans basic gaming pc’s. I’m sure they started at £500 ex monitor.

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I assumed midrange to ensure a decent spec but its still a lot more than a console.

A Plystation or Xbox is by far the cheapest option as gaming PC’s are, by far, the most expensive type of computer. If you are looking at computers then:
1/ you definitely need a separate graphics card,
2/ laptops are less powerful than the equivalent priced desktop (though less so than used to be the case).
3/ Windows for games, not a Mac.

To put the above in context, my laptop cost a smidge under £2K and is far from being the most expensive. A cheap gaming PC will date very quickly and what you want is a PS5 IMO - particularly for a 12 year old.

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Do you actually need a PC at the same spec as one of the new consoles?
The PS5 processor needs to be powerful, as it will drive a large 4K HD Tv, if you intend using a PC with a 20” monitor it doesn’t need a powerful.
The spec of a PC I built 4 or 5 years ago, to what Scan described as a budget gaming PC (cost £350) is better than the recommended requirements to play Call Of Duty.

I think Dons grandson’s parents need to decide PC or Console. But maybe they have as he has indicated he wants a PC.

When my kids where little, we had a family PC in the dining room and the kids had consoles in there own room. We now have a loft full of consoles.

The obvious question is how much is your Grandson prepared to pay, Don. My son has been into gaming for years and has had Alienware PCs and laptops, and eldest Grandson has inherited one. Alienware machines are built for gaming, and look the part. They aren’t cheap though.

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Console, console, console, console… :wink:

Many thanks guys for the guidance so far.

I think his request for help is based on planning/needing to buy a new PC to cope more easily with his current home schooling. He is currently using a pretty old desktop job supplied by his dad, discarded from his small business.

Grandma (aka Mrs D), has apparently offered to either buy or help towards a new PC for his up-comming birthday. (I don’t seem to get included in these arrangements until it’s time to write the cheque !) Probably a Microsoft Laptop 3 with 8GB RAM and 128GB SSD currently going for £850. Why ? probably because Daughter No 3 (his aunt) bought a few of these last week for her employees at work.

Not much chance of getting a PS5 and a new PC, so why not ask Grandad whether a “few” extra little pounds could lift the PC into the realms of “gaming”

Add £xxx instead of a PS5 and the PC budget could increase. Same laptop but perhaps 16GB RAM and a lift in SSD storage as well.

Cunning, but i’m not sure it works ?

like Hifi, there are a thousand ways to do this, with a similar number of price points.

Consoles vs PC: equivalent to MUSO vs 500 system.
laptop vs Desktop: equivalent to Superuniti vs separates.

and the cost is pretty much like the hifi analogy. and the questions are the same…how much are you prepared to spend?

And a bit like hifi, everyone will have their own opinion. so I expect that what I suggest will be ripped to shreds… (reminds of a hifi forum I frequent)

assuming that he is not going professional (immediately), then £1500-2000 will get you something along the lines of

PC - desktop 700+ Watt PSU

Intel i7 processor, 16GB RAM (Corsair or Kingston), Asus or Gigabyte mobo with onboard sound, 5.1 surround speakers (ethernet and usb ports are assumed)

two hard disks, 2 TB each Western Digital. if you want to push the boat out the make the C: drive an SSD

Asus or Gigabyte NVidia graphics card ( i tend to match the make of card to the mobo) expect to pay £400 for this alone!

Razer mouse (optional headset and mic - for gaming with friends)

Logitech keyboard

Windows 10 64-bit Professional

24" monitor - IIyama, Dell, Samsung

Which is pretty much what I’m about to build for a family member :slight_smile:

And my creds? I’ve been building the family PCs for a quarter of a century - and three of us are serious gamers!

Being a twelve year old, I suspect he’s thinking along the lines of something that looks like this, rather than a laptop. :heart_eyes:

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Yikes !!

Oh yeah, I’d forgot …add a hundred or so for the case with the cool lighting show…LOL

not to mention the Razer mouse mat and keyboard which light up in sync with the mouse…

Fyi our eldest who is 12 is quite happily doing homework on a several years old laptop. You only need a browser for google classroom. Something new is really not required!


still cheaper than a 552!

In fact, not much more than a Muso 2…and he could do his homework on it…

which bit of “He wants a gaming PC” did you miss? :smiley: :innocent:

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The bit where a 12 yr old is allowed to play call of duty!


That would come under the auspices of “Parental Control and Responsibility” rather than “Gaming Capable Hardware”