High-end gaming is one area in which the desktop PC still reigns supreme. In this category we allow vendors to go all out, kitting out their systems to the best of their abilities. Here's the 8 best gaming PCs available to buy in the UK in 2014/2015. (For more advice, see How to buy a great games PC.)
Best gaming PCs 2014/2015 UK: buying advice
If your budget is tight, you can save a significant amount of money by hanging on to your old monitor, keyboard and mouse. Aria's FX-Viper 8320 expects you to take exactly this approach and at £895 is by far the least expensive of the group. It's also the only system based on an AMD processor, and although it runs at the same 4.4GHz clock speed as most of the competition, it struggled to keep up the pace both when running applications and games. Furthermore, we measured a power consumption of over 650W when running at full load, which exceeds the rating of the 600W power supply included. Consider this system if your funds won't stretch to the Wired2Fire Diablo GTX-M, but do consider upgrading the power supply.
The Serenity Mini Gamer from Quiet PC operates in near silence, so it's a great choice if you don't want to disturb the peace with a whirring PC. It's reasonably priced, but doesn't include a monitor. Its CPU was also set at stock speeds, and without overclocking it inevitably turned in the slowest PCMark 7 scores. However, we're sure you'd be able to eke some more performance out of it if you know what you're doing.
For the best raw processing system performance, Yoyotech's Warbird RS2 came out on top with its Hyper Threading Core i7 processor; but its high overall price isn't matched by higher gaming speeds.
Even more expensive is CyberPower's Infinity Perseus XT. It's a good performer featuring AMD-powered graphics in a full-sized case that's great for upgraders. It also includes a much larger SSD, Blu-ray playback and gaming peripherals.
Highly recommended for sheer value for money, Wired2Fire's Diablo GTX-M is an incredible buy at £1099, offering great features and excellent performance in a super-compact case. This PC came extremely close to being our best buy, but unfortunately, that case is pretty cramped and it's not so easy to tinker inside. Also, the PC failed to complete our more stressful tests as configured and required us to make some changes in the EFI ourselves to preserve stability.
Our Best Buy award goes to Chillblast's Fusion Probe which sits in the middle of the price range, yet delivered the highest PC Mark 7 score and the fastest high-quality gaming results. The monitor mouse and keyboard aren't quite as exciting as some of the competition, but at this price it can't be faulted.