2016 Holiday Gift Guide: PC Gaming
It's the most wonderful time of the year once again: Gift Guide season! We're here to help with gift recommendations for all the gamers and tech geeks in your life.
If there's one thing that PC gamers really appreciate, it's precision. That's why they want the latest keyboards, the most accurate mice, and the best sounding headsets. We've got a little bit of all of that in this guide to gift ideas for PC people, along with the portable power you need to make it all go, as well as the cutting edge of gaming tech: virtual reality.
You're a Prodigy
One of the good things about professional sports is that advancements made for pro athletes eventually make their way to regular folk, and we're starting to see that happen with e-sports as well. Take the Prodigy series from Logitech, for example. The G231 Prodigy Gaming Headset is lightweight, has controls on its two-meter-long cable, and has performance-sport cloth ear cups that can turn flat for convenient travelling.
Similarly, the G403 Prodigy Gaming Mouse is up to eight times faster than a normal mouse, and not only has programmable buttons and lighting, but it has one of the most advanced and accurate sensors available. It's also available in a wired/wireless version so you can free yourself from the cord if you choose.
Lastly, the G213 Prodigy RGB Gaming Keyboard also has personalized lighting, is thin but durable and spill-resistant, and has dedicated media controls for when you want to play your fight song.
Along with the Prodigy line, Logitech has also released the G Pro Mouse, which has a metal spring button tensioning system that reduces the amount of force needed to click, an advanced optical sensor, and internal memory so PC players can save their customized settings in the mouse when they go to a tournament (or a friend's house). The Pro is Logitech's effort to produce a mouse that both professional and up-and-coming gamers can enjoy.
For more, check out our review of the G Pro Mouse.
We also have a more in-depth look at the G213 Prodigy Gaming Keyboard.
Hop to it with Kangaroo
Travelling can be tough for serious PC fans, since it means leaving behind the comfort and power your tower.Thankfully that will be less of a problem for your PC pals with the Kangaroo Mobile Desktop Pro, a computer that — at less than 5-inches by 3.5-inches by 0.5-inches, and weighing in at 0.7 pounds — is only the size of a smartphone. Running Windows 10, the Kangaroo Pro has an Intel Atom x5-Z8500 Processor and 32GB of storage, as well as HDMI and the ability to use a keyboard and mouse. It can even be locked with a fingerprint scanner in case your game-loving relative leaves it on the bus.
While the tech in the Kangaroo isn't powerful enough to run a hardware-hungry modern PC title like Doom, you'll be pleasantly surprised at what it can handle when it comes to older or less demanding games. It also provides the comforts of a PC on the go in a way a smartphone just can't manage.
For more on the Kangaroo line, check out the coverage over on Unlocked.
The Gaming Laptop Revolution
While it may not have happened yet, we all know that, at some point, we're going to see someone in Starbucks or on an airplane who's playing a VR game on their laptop. But if you know someone who'd like to be that person now, you might want to get them a powerful laptop that will make VR feel more real than virtual.
MSI has a huge range of VR-ready laptops, including the GS43VR Phantom Pro, the GE72VR Apache Pro, the GT72VR Dominator Pro, the GT72VR Tobii, and many more. All have Intel Core i7 processors running Windows 10 on displays that range in size from 14-inches (the GS43VR Phantom Pro) to 18.4 (the GT83VR Titan SLI), while the NVIDIA cards include GTX1060s for the GS and GE models, 1070s for the GT62s and 72s, and dual GTX 1080s for the GT83 and 73s. All are VR-ready of course, so the lucky gamer on your holiday list will be able to take serious gaming power with them wherever they go.
On the Razer's Edge
Razer is one of the biggest and most popular names in the gaming peripheral market for a reason. Their Mamba and DeathAdder gaming mice have been staples of the PC gaming scene for years now, and this year saw the debut of their BlackWidow X Chroma keyboard, which combines RGB lighting, mechanical keys, and a sleek metal frame.
If you dig Razer's black and green aesthetic, you don't have to stop with a keyboard and mouse. NZXT makes a Razer-branded PC case to stuff full of your favorite components, and you can also pick up Razer's Seiren PRO USB microphone to complete the setup.
2016 was the first real year of consumer virtual reality, but in 2017 it's expected to take off like a rocket, with more games, entertainment, and software to enjoy. If the PC gamer in your life already has a powerful PC capable of handling VR then a VR headset is the perfect gift to make sure they stay on the cutting edge.
It's tough to go wrong with either the Oculus Rift or the HTC Vive right now, and 2017 should be full of mind-blowing games on both platforms. If you do decide to go with the Vive (or if the recipient of your holiday giving already has the headset) you can pick up some special protective skins for the headset or the controllers as stocking stuffers.
For more VR hardware, make sure to visit Newegg's VR Central.
Stay tuned for more gift ideas from GameCrate, and make sure to let us know what's on your wishlist in the comments below!