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New ‘Best PC Build’ Competition Now Underway

Update, 9/18/17, 6:50am PT: The submission period for our Best PC Builds is over, which means the vote is now under way. Before you vote, check out all the Best PC Build submissions in our Systems forums. There are seven different budget categories, ranging from $500 all the way up to $2,500. We had tons of great submissions this go around, so thanks to everyone who participated. You can vote on all seven Best PC Build budget categories by following this link

Original, 8/22/17, 2:20pm PT:

As many of you have noted, our Best PC Builds were dated shortly after we published them, a seemingly constant struggle we’ll face given the current pace of change our industry is enjoying, especially with a resurgent AMD. Even as we push the “publish” button on this article, signs point to a new CPU from Intel (Coffee Lake) some time this fall.

Indeed, 2017 will be remembered as a landmark year for computer hardware. The spring debut of AMD’s Ryzen caused a seismic shift in the industry, heralding the return of competition to a formerly stagnant CPU market. Enthusiasts of all types, from the most ardent of Intel fanboys to the lifetime Team Red fanatics, should cheer AMD’s revival. The Zen CPU architecture—powering not only Ryzen, but also AMD’s EPYC server processors and the high-end Threadripper CPUs—ushered in a consumer CPU revolution. Thanks to Ryzen, dual-core CPUs are rapidly approaching extinction, and Intel is suddenly on the defensive. The $999 10-core/20-thread Intel i9-7900X released in June, a farfetched fantasy in 2016 at that price, is now a necessary response.

Although it is undeniably a banner year for consumer CPUs, the GPU market has seen its own fair share of changes, not just with the newly-minted AMD Vega GPUs to counter Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 1080 and 1070, but a general shortage (and volatile prices) thanks to cryptocoin mining, which is booming once again. Building a PC has hardly ever been fraught with so many fabulous (and difficult) choices.

All of this is to say that we’re long overdue for a Best PC Builds update. Both the Community and Editorial teams are interested to see how our members will overcome the turbulence and obstacles in the marketplace. We’re looking for the high performance, feature-rich builds that offer great value. The most successful builds will balance savings on the CPU with the increased cost of a GPU, while not skimping on power and storage.

Have what it takes to for a winning submission? You’ll have until Thursday, September 14 to submit your best builds in each of the eight budget categories. Having the best build isn’t just for bragging rights anymore. We’re raising the stakes this time and will present the winner of each category a Newegg gift card worth $100.

The Tom’s Hardware Best PC Builds Q3 2017 Update will run until Thursday, September 14. Make sure to carefully read the rules for each category! Submissions with formatting errors or out of budget will be disqualified. Here are links to all seven build categories:

$500 Budget Build
$750 Budget Build
$1,000 Budget Build
$1,250 Budget Build
$1,500 Budget Build
$2,000 Budget Build
$2,500 Budget Build

Good luck and may the best build win!

  • why_wolf
    question do we still need to insure that ITX builds have built in WiFi?
    Reply
  • ajcroteau
    When they say "Best PC Build", are they saying best gaming or productivity build? or Best well rounded build in each price category?
    Reply
  • Lucky_SLS
    no unlimited budget category this time? :(
    Reply
  • shrapnel_indie
    Well, we're starting in Q3, but it will be Q4 when this is over. Time to start examining the possibilities.

    Ugh! GPUs are still feeling the bite of the mining operations grabbing everything in sight.

    (When will the interface between article web page and forum finally be fixed?)
    Reply
  • YoAndy
    Do we have to follow any budgets?
    Reply
  • Jsimenhoff
    20094700 said:
    Do we have to follow any budgets?
    Please read the rules for each budget category. I have placed links for each budget category in the original announcement article, linked?rel=ugc]http://www.tomshardware.com/news/best-pc-builds-q3-2017,35291.html]linked here.
    Any builds out of budget will be disqualified.
    Reply
  • Jsimenhoff
    20092320 said:
    question do we still need to insure that ITX builds have built in WiFi?
    This is a good question. I was under the assumption that ITX motherboards now come with WiFi standard.
    Reply
  • why_wolf
    20095224 said:
    20092320 said:
    question do we still need to insure that ITX builds have built in WiFi?
    This is a good question. I was under the assumption that ITX motherboards now come with WiFi standard.

    They mostly do but I see a few that don't have it built in or at the least the only have an empty PCI slot but no actual WiFi card installed. Price difference is small like $10.
    Reply
  • shrapnel_indie
    Side note: some of the built threads use Q2 instead of Q3 in the titles.
    Reply
  • ibjeepr
    What are you supposed to due if PCPartsPicker's price doesn't match what Newegg or Amazon shows?
    Are you allowed to edit your submission up until Sept. 14?
    Reply