BestConfigs Is Back, And Powered By You!

Our BestConfigs section is atrociously outdated. We know this, are we’re going to rectify the situation as quickly as possible.

As a quick refresher, BestConfigs is a section of the site with recommended configurations that fit within a specific theme, and duck under a set budget. The last time we updated our nine builds, we used audience-suggested configurations that were presented by our readers and then voted on by the community. A software bug stopped us before we could get each winning configuration posted to the site. But that has since been fixed, and we’re ready to roll again (this time with one addition: a do-it-yourself NAS).

The idea, of course, is to offer a handful of different setups that Tom’s Hardware’s readership would recommend to friends and family looking for an easy-to-find parts list, and then a way to get the best prices on those components.

This time around, we’re going to streamline the process even more. Have you seen the new System Builder app on Facebook? Put your machine of choice together using that, do a BBCode export, and paste into any of the categories defined below. Yes, we’re sensitive to the fact that some of you absolutely despise Facebook, and that’s fine too. Just follow the same BBCode-friendly formatting demonstrated by Joe Pishgar, our community manager, at the start of each thread and submit your favorite combination of hardware.

Don’t factor in shipping and don’t add in the cost of an operating system—not everyone cares to spend big bucks on their software. The prices here are for hardware-only. Do feel free to let your choices be swayed by rebates and combo pricing. Though they’re not always long-lasting, we’re in favor of whatever gets our readers the best deal.

We’re going to leave these forum threads unlocked for two weeks before opening the field up to votes.

Budget Intel-Based Gaming PC
Budget AMD-Based Gaming PC
High-End Intel Gaming PC
Intel-Based Office PC
High-end AMD Gaming PC
AMD-Based Office PC
MicroATX Gaming Build
Home Theater PC
High-End Workstation
Do-It-Yourself NAS

Best regards,

Chris Angelini
Worldwide Editor-in-Chief, Tom’s Hardware

Chris Angelini
Chris Angelini is an Editor Emeritus at Tom's Hardware US. He edits hardware reviews and covers high-profile CPU and GPU launches.
  • Ragnar-Kon
    Yes, we’re sensitive to the fact that some of you absolutely despise Facebook, and that’s fine too.
    Ah look Tom's does read the comments.

    Now, time to build a system.
  • RazberyBandit
    The "Budget" PC builds should have a pre-defined budget range (or cap) determined by Tom's.
  • lunyone
    Since when is $1k build "budget"?? I thought "budget", espeicailly in these economic times, meant somehting more in the $400-600 price range (especially since your not including the OS/Keyboard/Mouse). I'm going to submit an actual "Budget" build like I did in 2010 (which I won that build too). Obviously I'm not going to have the best $1k build, but at least it'll be "budget" and not sooo shocking to the general public (which "friends and family looking for a parts list" won't be turned away by the price).

    Good luck to all!
  • cangelini
    Ragnar-KonAh look Tom's does read the comments.Now, time to build a system.
    I read *all* of the comments, friend ;-)
  • pacostrano
    mmm this is wierd can't access the forum :(
  • WR2
    cangeliniI read *all* of the comments, friend ;-)You have our sincere sympathy.

  • General M00n
    Agreeing with lunyone here, 1000 bucks is i5-2500k + 6950 territory. I'll be submitting a $400 build to show you don't need to spend much to get good performance and a $600 because i believe its the sweet spot money-for-frames wise.
  • lunyone
    Are we going to have a sticky or maybe a good reference on the front page of Toms?? Last time we had this build-off, it was a bit hard to find where they were located. It'll also allow new people to come onto the site and see where to find the build-off at.

    GOOOOO General MOOn!!! I currently have a ~$600 build right now in the "AMD Budget Build" section for all to see. I list several options, so hopefully you can make and informed decision on what you want to spend for a "Budget" gaming rig!!
  • fir_ser
    Cool, but I didn't like the Facebook integration in the first place.
  • wolfram23
    I vote for 3 categories, $500, $1000, $2000.