PC gaming is a lot different from console gaming. Not only are there more options, most of those options have a lot of considerations to them. In headsets alone you go from working with maybe five per company, to every product having a path to work on PC. That being said, we still wanted to offer some suggestions to make the PC gamer in your life happy.
Holiday Gift Guide 2022 – PC
This past year a number of gamers have purchased a Steam Deck and came to love the idea of playing their favorite PC games on the go. Not only do you have a name and platform you can trust, it’s a truly liberating experience being able to play an RPG like Persona 5 Royal, or one of this games biggest experiences, Elden Ring. Given all tiers also come with a case, it makes for a fantastic purchase in any form.
GEEKOM Mini PC
While a little more specific, GEEKOM’s line of mini PCs offer a fair bit of versatility for players looking to branch out. Not only is it a strong choice for anyone with limited space and want to get into the world of streaming games, it makes for a powerful budget computer to take on the go for conventions or other events where you might want to capture/edit without needing a larger computer. Also, if you’re looking for a sweeter deal, GEEKOM is offering a free case and $50 off their IT8 with promo code XMIT8i5A.
Unlike consoles, PC games are a bit more complicated. For example, A Plague Tale: Requiem is one of our suggestions from the Xbox guide. Players can purchase it from Steam, Epic Game Store, or download it as part of Xbox Game Pass for PC/Ultimate. In most cases, codes can’t be returned and it makes for an underwhelming experience. Not only does your gift, no matter how thoughtful, fall flat, but this could also turn into an unexpected hassle that no one wants to deal with. Likewise, even gift cards suffer from this, as different people will value different storefronts. For these reasons we won’t list any games for PC and suggest sticking to accessories, though if you really want to go down this path, many of the games listed in the PlayStation and Xbox Holiday Guides also work on PC. Another safe bet is going with one of the growing numbers of Sony games released for PC. Something like Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales just released on PC and is really making a splash.
Expand Their Set Up
At this point you can honestly get anything with RGB, making it hard to keep up or even know it exists. If you know someone interested in these products, I strongly suggest seeing if they have a brand preference. Most major players like Razer, HyperX, SteelSeries, Corsair, and the like have specific software designed to integrate all these components. As a result, if they have a keyboard, headset, and mouse from a specific brand, you’re likely best sticking with that brand.
In the event they don’t, Razer offers the most complete lineup on the market, most of which come in a variety of colors. If you anticipate they’ll only want key products (keyboard, mouse, headset), HyperX and SteelSeries are both fantastic choices.
EPOS went in a very different direction with their first USB microphone. Instead of going for a fairly traditional look or attempting to capture certain demographics, B20 is simple and clean. Everything about it is sleek, simple and to the point, including the base that has leads wires through the back for a more elegant look. It also helps that it performs quite well, working in a wide variety of settings.
One of the struggles we often mention with upgrading your system is determining what is and is not a good investment. For some, this is going to be a more fun microphone like Razer’s Seirēn series, others Maono’s colorful DM30 line, perhaps the aforemented clean look of EPOS’ B20, but in PD400X‘s case it’s versatility. With the ability to work as a standard USB microphone, or integrate with an interface is huge for anyone on the cusp. This, along with the simpler look, makes it a strong choice that even comes in special holiday themed packaging.
Maono Maonocaster E2
Maono’s Maonocaster E2 is a massive upgrade over their original, offering impressive value in a small package. It works on the go, with PlayStation 5, pairs perfectly with PD400X, and supports a large number of options. It makes for a fantastic offering for someone that wants to take their streaming game to the next level, but doesn’t want to get into multiple thousand dollar set ups.
If you don’t want to go the PD400X route, HyperX’s ProCast looks to be an impressive XLR microphone. With most of the benefits found on the QuadCast, coupled with HyperX’s expected level of quality, it makes for a stylish addition to your audio interface.
Monoprice Zero-G 27in Curved Gaming Monitor
Even though plenty of gamers know where they’re going with accessories, games, and computer parts, some still need a bit more when it comes to a monitor. If you’re looking for a good solution without going crazy, Monoprice’s Zero-G 27in Curved Gaming Monitor is a fantastic option. With a 6ms response time, 144hz refresh, and QHD screen, it’s a great option at an even greater price. And, while the curved option is more popular, there is a slightly different flat panel that is also a great option.
EPOS GSX 1000 2nd Edition
EPOS’ recently revised GSX 1000 2nd Edition looks to be one nice accessory for PC gamers. With various different sound profiles and staging, along with countless control options, it should be a fantastic way to bring your favorite headset to the next level without installing more software.
INNOCN Portable Monitor
With the rise of work from home, more advanced setups, and more, a growing number of people are purchasing multiple monitors. Some opt to purchase something simple, others just select the cheapest, though INNOCN’s portable monitors offer versatility and options for only a little more.
Their PF15-PRO model offers a second touch screen that can freely be used on the go. It’s extremely helpful knowing it can supplement your desk when you’re home or your laptop on the go. This is a huge bonus for content creators who might need another screen on the go. We personally found it helpful for an external streaming window, as you can interact with others with a simple tap of the screen. Those interested in Steam Deck or a GEEKOM mini PC should also be able to use this as a way to get a fuller experience outside of the home.
PU15-PRE takes the aforementioned elements and adds 4K OLED to the mix. Not only is this a huge upgrade in picture quality, but it also works even better for jobs where color accuracy matters, like photography.
Immerse Gaming | HIVE
In the event, they already have a nice pair of headphones and simply want to get more out of them, Embody’s recently released Immerse Gaming | HIVE is a great option. It uses AI, which is explained quite thoroughly here, to deliver a more immersive sound experience. Those who tried it were surprised by how well it delivers and Embody is so confident they actually offer multiple demos and even a trial if you want to check it out first. Also, for the Final Fantasy XIV fans out there, there is a specially tuned version releasing next month.