Best overall

Alienware Aurora

The latest Alienware Aurora is an incredible thing. Not only does it have room for incredible gaming power, it does so in a relatively compact, well-designed case.

You get options galore, too, and you can go up to the latest 8th-generation Intel Core i7 processors, a pair of GTX 1080ti graphics cards, 64GB of RAM and even have it liquid cooled if you wish. If you go for a lower spec option, you get oodles of space to add your own upgrades down the line.

Prices start at $900 and go all the way up to around $3,800.

Bottom line: A desktop with something to offer everyone, from more budget conscious gamers through to the most demanding performance seekers.

One more thing: You can add a pair of top-end GPUs at the point of purchase if you wish.

See at Dell

Why the Alienware Aurora is best

Just like its parent Dell brand, Alienware has been making some amazing hardware in recent times. The Aurora was revived and reborn with a whole new design that's both striking and clever.

You can squeeze not one, but TWO GTX 1080Ti graphics cards in the Aurora. Crazy.

Thanks to touches like the swing-out vertically mounted power supply, you get more space for more things. You can squeeze in a pair of GTX 1080ti graphics cards as well as a liquid cooler for the CPU. You also get plenty of space for additional drive bays, with two on the bottom and a 3.5-inch HDD bay mounted behind the front panel.

It isn't even that expensive, either. Prices start at less than $800, and while you're not getting the most powerful parts for that, the ease of upgrade means you're not limited by what you can initially afford. Adding more RAM or a new graphics card is completely tool free and takes just a couple of minutes.

What the Aurora offers is something for everyone. Those on a budget, those looking for ridiculous power, those hoping to upgrade in the future and everyone else in between.

Best small form

Corsair One

What you get inside this fairly tall but very slender box is astonishing. Corsair's first PC is a barnstormer with the latest version sporting an Intel Core i7-8700K processor, 16GB of RAM and a GTX 1080 or GTX 1080 Ti graphics card. It's supremely powerful but also supremely quiet.

And because Corsair uses industry standard parts inside the One, it's future proof. If you want to upgrade bits, you can. The exterior panels peel away giving you easy access to the components within.

Prices start at $2,299 for the GTX 1080 model with 16GB of RAM.

Bottom line: Incredible power from a small, sleek machine.

One more thing: The latest models include the latest 6-core unlocked processors from Intel.

See at Amazon

Best budget

HP Pavilion Desktop

Not all PC gamers want to spend thousands or need the power from the top-of-the-line GPUs. For $800 you can get a HP Pavilion Desktop with an 8th Generation Core i5-8400 six-core processor and NVIDIA GTX 1060 3GB graphics card.

Not only this but it's a stylish looking little box with ports galore and even an optical drive, which makes it great to double up as a home media PC, too.

Bottom line: Great for less demanding gamers and those on a tighter budget.

One more thing: Also has an optical drive which makes it great for media PCs, too.

See at Amazon

The sleeper PC

Dell XPS 8930

If you want a PC to game on that doesn't look like a teenager designed it, here it is. The Dell XPS tower is sleek and sophisticated looking while still packing some serious horsepower inside.

At the bottom end, you're getting an 8th-generation Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM and a 4GB GTX 1050ti for $1,149. The specs go all the way up to a Core i7, GTX 1080 and 64GB of RAM. Whichever spec you go for you get a professional looking PC that can also frag your friends and enjoy VR.

Bottom line: Looks can be decieving, as this is far more than just a workstation.

One more thing: The various configurations also include compatibility with VR systems like Oculus Rift and HTC Vive.

See at Dell

Conclusion

There are a lot of great pre-built gaming PCs out there but it's hard to do better than the Alienware Aurora right now. You can either save money now and upgrade it down the line or spec it up out of the box with an insane amount of hardware. There's something for everyone in this cleverly designed PC.

But if you need to save space or are on a tighter budget, or even just want something that doesn't look like a gaming PC, there are also great choices to be had from Corsair, HP and Dell.

Best overall

Alienware Aurora

The latest Alienware Aurora is an incredible thing. Not only does it have room for incredible gaming power, it does so in a relatively compact, well-designed case.

You get options galore, too, and you can go up to the latest 8th-generation Intel Core i7 processors, a pair of GTX 1080ti graphics cards, 64GB of RAM and even have it liquid cooled if you wish. If you go for a lower spec option, you get oodles of space to add your own upgrades down the line.

Prices start at $900 and go all the way up to around $3,800.

Bottom line: A desktop with something to offer everyone, from more budget conscious gamers through to the most demanding performance seekers.

One more thing: You can add a pair of top-end GPUs at the point of purchase if you wish.

See at Dell

Updated August 1, 2018: The HP Pavilion joins the ranks as our new top pick for gamers on a budget.