Best overall: Alienware Aurora

Style, power, and ports.

See at Dell

Alienware, Dell's gaming line of PCs, is pumping out some impressive devices. The Aurora sports up to dual NVIDIA GTX 1080 Ti GPUs, an 8th Gen Intel Core i7-8700K processor (CPU), 64GB of DDR4 RAM, and a 2TB PCIe solid-state drive (SSD) coupled with a 2TB hard-disk drive (HDD). There are also plenty of configuration options if you don't need this amount of power. No matter what you choose inside, it all comes in an attractive, unique case. VR-ready configurations of these PCs start at about $1,100.

Bottom line: The Alienware Aurora is your best bet for an ultimate VR desktop.

One more thing: For a PC with even more room in the case and some extra premium hardware options, check out the Alienware Area-51.

Why the Alienware Aurora is the best desktop PC for VR

When shopping for a pre-built PC for your VR rig, you want a combination of power and affordable price, which the Alienware Aurora delivers. Starting at about $1,100, you can get a configuration with an 8th Gen Intel Core i5-8400 quad-core CPU, 16GB of DDR4 RAM, a 1TB hard-disk drive, and an NVIDIA GTX 1060 GPU with 6GB of GDDR5 VRAM. This is more than enough power for a Rift or Vive, and checks the boxes when it comes to Windows Mixed Reality Ultra.

The top of the line configuration has a ridiculous amount of hardware in it, so you'll probably want to look at something in the mid-range that is a sweet spot of price and performance. We suggest the $1,600 configuration. It comes with an Intel Core i7-8700 CPU, 16GB of DDR4 RAM, a 128GB SSD coupled with a 2TB HDD, and an NVIDIA GTX 1070 GPU with 8GB of GDDR5 VRAM.

The hardware is all contained in a sleek case that has a PSU swing arm, letting you upgrade or tweak everything with ease. There is also lighting on the outside to give your rig some style. If you're a Rift owner, know that these PCs are Oculus certified and you'll have access to advanced Rift support. As for ports, you're looking at everything you'll need for a hassle-free VR experience.

See Aurora at Dell

Big budget: Alienware Area-51 Threadripper Edition

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Dell decided that its regular Area-51 gaming PC wasn't enough, so they went ahead and created a Threadripper Edition. Inside is up to an AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X CPU with 16 cores(!), 64GB of DDR4-2666MHz RAM, and dual NVIDIA GTX 1080 Ti GPUs with 11GB of GDDR5X VRAM each. That's a lot of power no matter what VR headset you're using, but it will cost you. The top configuration sits at about $5,000, though VR-ready models start at about $2,100.

Best customization: Origin Chronos

See at Origin

Origin will build you a desktop PC from a huge range of options that fit both your budget and your desires. Each PC is built to order and the Chronos packs an enormous amount of power into a fairly small box. You can spec one up with an AMD or Intel CPU, and for graphics, choose from either an AMD Radeon RX 570 all the way up to an NVIDIA Titan V with 12GB of GDDR5 VRAM. Origin also lets you customize virtually every aspect of the PC, including adding 32GB of DDR4 RAM, painting the outside, and having RGB lighting installed inside. It's not the cheapest entry to VR, but this would definitely be your PC. Grab one whether you're interested in the Vive, Rift, or Windows Mixed Reality Ultra.

Best Lenovo: Legion Y920 Tower

See at Lenovo

Lenovo's Legion line of gaming towers are relatively affordable for what you get inside. There's plenty of room for tool-free upgrades, the case has customizable lighting, and a clear cutout on the side shows off your internal hardware. Get up to a 7th Gen Intel Core i7-7700K CPU, 16GB of DDR4 RAM, a 2TB HDD coupled with a 256GB SSD, and an NVIDIA GTX 1080 GPU for about $2,500. The best part for VR, though, are the ports located on the front of the chassis that allow for easy headset and sensor hookup.

Best Acer: Acer Aspire GX-281

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Equipped with an AMD Ryzen 7 1700X eight-core CPU, 16GB of DDR4 RAM, a NVIDIA GTX 1060 GPU with 3GB of GDDR5 VRAM, and a 256GB SSD coupled with a 1TB HDD, Acer's Aspire GX-281 (about $1,150) clearly has something to prove. It should have no issues with Rift and WMR, and while it is near the lower end of Vive PCs, it should still deliver a quality experience. It has all the ports needed for an easy VR connection, and it's all contained in a chassis a gamer can appreciate. Included is a keyboard and mouse so you can start gaming as soon as it arrives.

Best HP: HP OMEN 880

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Redesigned for 2018, HP's OMEN gaming PC is available in plenty of configurations, starting at about $1,350. Get inside up to an 8th Gen Core i7-8700K water-cooled CPU, 16GB of DDR4 RAM, a 1TB SSD coupled with a 1TB HDD, and an NVIDIA GTX 1080 GPU. There are also AMD Ryzen and AMD Radeon options available. The sizeable case makes it easy for future upgrades, and black color is offset with red accents for an aggressive look.

Best budget: CYBERPOWERPC Gamer Xtreme

See at Amazon

This desktop PC from CYBERPOWERPC was designed from the start to deliver Rift, Vive, and WMR Ultra performance at a low price. You get an 8th Gen Intel i5-8400 six-core CPU, 8GB of DDR4 RAM, and an AMD Radeon RX 580 graphics card with 4GB of GDDR5 VRAM. Enjoy a 1TB HDD to hold your expanding library of games, and take advantage of the included gaming keyboard and gaming mouse. This PC starts at only about $740, though the attractive case with red lighting and clear cutout on the side make it seem like a premium build.

Conclusion

The Alienware Aurora is the best VR desktop for most people, though there are plenty of other options across the major (and minor) manufacturers.

Best overall: Alienware Aurora

Style, power, and ports.

See at Dell

Updated June 8, 2018: I've refreshed this roundup to ensure you're still looking at the best desktop PCs for VR.