MassivelyOP’s 2017 PC hardware gift guide

Since you’re reading this, there’s a good chance that you own a PC that you at least occasionally use for gaming, and there’s an equally good chance that you don’t have the newest, fastest hardware out there (although if you do, congratulations!). If not, then maybe we can point you to some upgrades that might help you get the performance that you, frankly, deserve.

This year, our sales team has once again put together a couple of gift guides pertinent to our MMO readers. Please note that Amazon links are affiliate links and may grant a small commission to us, which is very much appreciated. Read on for all the new gear to improve your PC experience!

Intel’s new Coffee Lake i7-8700K


Are you hiding from hostile mages for fear that their particle effects will bring your PC to its knees? Did you get a new Guild Wars 2 mount, but you can’t make sharp turns without waiting 10 seconds for your screen to catch up? Well, you might need a new processor! Intel has helpfully come out with a new 8th generation i7 core processor (and also i5 and i3, if you’re into that kind of thing) that is supposedly 45% faster than the 7th generation i7’s. And you can get it and a motherboard for less than the cost of a new Xbox One X. (Wait, is that really what it’s called? What happened to Xbox One II through IX?)

Zalman CPU Cooler

Actually, if you’re getting poor frame rate with a newer video card, you might want to check your CPU temperature. You might just need a new CPU cooler to keep up with the non-GPU-accelerated parts of the game engine. This giant chunk of metal with fans fits comfortably into a mid-tower case and is compatible with a whole bunch of Intel’s recent sockets. If you’re hoping to avoid a really expensive upgrade, this might be worth a try, especially since there’s no new line of NVidia GPUs out this year to push down the price of last year’s GTX 1050-1080 series.

Samsung 4K curved monitor


I have to admit, my first reaction to curved monitors was, “That’s a neat trick, but why would I want one?” Then I saw one in person, and even in the 1920×1080 version, the difference in immersion is noticeable. It’s like I never noticed all of the constant refocusing necessary to look at a wide, flat screen until there was an alternative! If your old monitor is looking a bit flat, consider getting this 4K 32″ curved monitor, guaranteed to give your old MMO a new perspective. (Warning: If you’ve been putting off your GPU upgrade, a 4K monitor might be what pushes you over the edge!)

Logitech G13 Programmable Gameboard


This dedicated left-hand gameboard has been out for a couple of years, but reviews are solid and the price is down below $60, so if you’ve been thinking about getting an accessory to help you reach those hard-to-reach F-keys, it might be the right time to try this out!

Thanks for reading, and happy shopping to you!

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51 Comments on "MassivelyOP’s 2017 PC hardware gift guide"

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MesaSage

I’m glad you weren’t promoting that little keyboard in the header. I bought one of those and it’s just sitting in a drawer. It’s terrible in my opinion. I bought a Logitech 400 to replace it and have never been happier with a wireless keyboard.

Reader
Josh

Ok, but what is that thing? Now I’m curious…

Reader
Gangrel

My cat loves teh laser pointer part.

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Crueltylizer

Couldn’t wait for Christmas and already got myself the i7 8700K – And seriously happy about it!

I’m still iffy about curved monitors. As gaming monitors maybe they will work, but for the living room, their appeal is limited as the immersion only happens at close range. And to be honest you really shouldn’t be so close to the monitor.

Reader
Sally Bowls

I was planning to buy a new TV tomorrow.

But if procrastination were an Olympic sport I would be on the podium. I found this to justify waiting for HDMI 2.1. I want VRR on new PC monitors, might as well have it on the TV as well.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/erikkain/2017/11/23/why-gamers-should-wait-until-2018-to-buy-a-new-4k-tv/#e330cd862135

MagmaFist
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Kickstarter Donor
MagmaFist

Thanks for posting this. I was seriously looking to get a 4K TV soon. I was thinking Freesync was going to be the choice for new TVs due to no licensing fees so interesting to read that one, HDMI not Displayport will have similar technology and two, there is now another frame rate matching technology.

Reader
Koshelkin

I really want a new monitor for a while but at the moment it’s hard to decide on anything. So much different things to consider that I’ll wait until the market has settled a bit.

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
thalendor

While I don’t have the monitor above, I can say, having been gaming in 4K for ~3 years now, that it is a huge jump over 1080P and notably sharper than 1440P as well. Some people might love their ultra-wide monitors and others their 144hz refresh rates, but if you ask me… 4K is where it’s at. Just make sure you have a video card setup that can handle it. :-)

Reader
Sally Bowls

TY!

I want a display upgrade, but I think it is still too soon.

Real 4K (3840×2160) monitors with GSync are still rare and I am not sure if any are curved yet. Even worse, I don’t see a single card that consistently runs 4K @ 60HZ so you need SLI and back in the day I had a lot of problems with a two graphics card set up and no MMO betas ran them. (Ofc, new MMOs are not that common these days.)

Maybe next year.

Minimalistway
Reader
Minimalistway

I’ve been thinking about buying that Logitech Gameboard, but i need SSD first,games loading time is killing me :-)

Reader
Mr_Planthead

I have a nostromo gamepad which is pretty similar to the logitech(just older) get the ssd first, the gameboards are spiffy but the ssd is a much better buy to start with

Reader
Paul

OMG – get one now – playing games off a mechanical drive is like playing music off wax cylinders :P

Minimalistway
Reader
Minimalistway

Well .. i have to make compromises to buy this new desktop, i thought in time i’ll upgrade it slowly, so first thing SSD, hopefully i’ll get one soon.

Speaking of wax cylinders, you can listen to them! Internet Archive digitized a large collection of them :-D

deekay_plus
Reader
deekay_plus

i’ve been using ssd’s for 7 years and the number of games that don’t really benefit from them has been increasing lately.

alot of the time it tends to be either shader building and/or networking, but it’s really a buzz kill.

Reader
Paul

On the CPU front the release of the 8th gen has lead to some cracking deals on the 7th gen chips – I just upgraded my 3rd gen i5 to a 7th gen i7 (massive upgrade) and the % price saving was significantly higher than the performance diff in the real world.

Reader
Patreon Donor
Loyal Patron
ChaosConstant

“Staffy Stafferson”? Did you guys hire a new writer?

deekay_plus
Reader
deekay_plus

because it’s an advertisement article they are divorcing it from the normal writing staff. probably someone at amazon wrote it or it was a group piece.

tho @bree you might wanna properly disclose with tags or w/e the influencers on social media do these days that it’s an ad so you don’t get one of those FTC slaps on the wrist :P

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

Our sales person wrote it! Amazon doesn’t pay us to write or write anything for us – we never do sponsored content like that. Like it says in the disclosure in the intro, they are affiliate links, though, so if somebody buys something through us (the stuff above or otherwise), we get a little commission. It pays for a couple of features every month. :D

deekay_plus
Reader
deekay_plus

derp how did i miss the boxed in outlined disclosure. lol. i was kind of worried for you there for a minute.

i’d get something out of yalls’ affiliate links now and then but it’s .com amazon not .ca and most of the time it’s not good stuff (imho). should branch out in products a bit – pass it on to the sales staff! :D

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

Yeah the non-US stuff is a pain. In general though it doesn’t matter – if you click through to Amazon through us and buy anything (barring weird exceptions), we get our pittance. Even if you hate the specific thing we linked to. :D

deekay_plus
Reader
deekay_plus

that’s interesting to know. i’ll try to keep that in mind when i buy twin peaks s3 br for my dad for xmas! :D

Reader
McGuffn

I think it’s the same Staffy Stafferson that won a Pulitzer for a yelp review a couple years back.

Reader
Patreon Donor
Veldan

My PC is over 5 years old and I have enough money to get an entirely new one… but I just haven’t felt the need. My 3rd generation i7 is still spectacular and my trusty old overclocked HD 7850 card still handles graphics of everything that’s not cutting edge photo-realism.

One day I’ll upgrade and get parts for a whole new PC, but something will have to make me want it first.

Reader
Ukrutor

Totally true. I’m still running the very same rig I had built back in September 2012 (except for the gtx660ti GPU, which got fried and had to be replaced with gtx1050ti). I’m yet to encounter a game that doesn’t run comfortably on this machine. And it’s not even i7, it’s mere i5 because I didn’t know any better back then.
We live in good times (as far as gaming PCs are concerned). ;)

deekay_plus
Reader
deekay_plus

i5’s are generally great for gaming, i7 if you do content creator type stuff on top of gaming :)

deekay_plus
Reader
deekay_plus

the 7850 is getting a bit long in the tooth but the 3rd gen i7 is gonna be going strong for a while unless amd can manage to get intel into a performance war. >>

still if you do non gaming professional/hobbyist stuff those 8 series cpu’s are a great upgrade to most everything before them. i’m not kidding go look at reviews to get a sense of them. <<

Reader
Sray

Hardware Canucks did a head to head of the 8700k versus the 2700k, and the gaming results were shockingly low gains with the 8700k @1080p and virtually neck and neck @4k. A third gen i7 would probably fair even better in that sort of match up.

Veldan if you are looking to get a bit of a boost in gaming performance, grab a GTX 1050ti and call it a day. Maybe a ssd if you’re not adverse to reinstalling your OS. Anything more than that is a waste if you’re not chasing the cutting edge at 4k.

Reader
Patreon Donor
Veldan

I already have an SSD, they were more expensive back then but realizing the improvement I got one anyway. I thought about upgrading the graphics card a few years back, but decided against it… I kinda figure that ship has sailed now. It seems like a waste to me to buy a new one now because when something comes out that I really want I’ll just replace the whole PC.

Besides, I’m not playing anything right now that even demands max performance of my current card. I haven’t been playing any mainstream games lately, but more indie type of stuff that relies on artstyle to have visual appeal and not graphical detail or photorealism.

Probably the most challenging thing I’ve let my card do is run Rise of the Tomb Raider, which it did surprisingly well (surprising to me, anyway). Prettiest graphics my PC ever showed me. That did put it at max usage % though.

deekay_plus
Reader
deekay_plus

yeah it was teh 2600k and i was sharing that one around myself. pretty good stuff. too bad they don’t really review more CPU heavy games than gta5 which is maybe the heaviest on cpu game they do and not all that heavy but still.

i know i didn’t upgrade from the 2600k becuase of gaming performance complaints!

deekay_plus
Reader
deekay_plus

just a heads up on that coffee lake cpu line up – these are insanly good cpu’s at insanely good prices. even the i3 version is a six core monster at an insanely good price.

and while the obvious motherboards are a bit overpriced, with some gumption and due diligence you can find cheaper versions that compare to some of those budget ryzen offerings with great feature sets (as it is intel boards tend to be super overfeatured with feature lists you’ll forget and not be sure you ever used to begin with).

also razer released the tartarus v2 recently which is basically the best of the nostromo series (including that classic dpad on the thumb) with an extra row of keyboard keys. for those of you that didn’t care for the orbweaver or tartarus 1.

also don’t get zalman anything. they’re the madcatz of coolers. if you’re on a budget get a coolermaster 212. if you’re not get a noctua. there’s no excuse to get some zalman trash lmao.

Reader
Paul

Steady :) – the i3 is a quad core not 6 (still excellent bump for the i3 though), the i5 is a 6 core (which is insanely good at i5 price point)

deekay_plus
Reader
deekay_plus

ahh my bad, still a beast tho for an i3 price point!

Reader
Paul

for sure – the old i3 was an exceptional dual core chip (with 4 logical processors due to the same HT tech as on the i7), taking that to a true quad core takes things to the next level – for a budget system the i3 is looking very good

deekay_plus
Reader
deekay_plus

coyote has the 6100 and it destroys anything she throws at it. makes me question my sanity for getting a 7700k except i do do video editing XD

Reader
Paul

It was Cities Skylines that really brought my 3570k to its knees – the 7700k takes that in its stride (but still gets a good workout heh) – mind you even playing games with low CPU use I’m seeing a noticeable improvement in ‘smoothness’ with the 7700k

Xijit
Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Xijit

I really wish I had the money for that monitor.

Reader
Annoyed badger

Love my G13, been using it for years, great product, solid reliable, has taken a pounding and keeps on going. Cant recommend it enough.

Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Rees Racer

I’ve been using a G13 for several years, and it has solved any nagging wrist issues I had using the keyboard. Paired with the Logitech G600 MMO mouse, my gaming is an absolute ergonomic joy and I’ve setup individual profiles for every game. So indispensable, I even pack them whilst travelling.

Reader
Reht

I used a Nostomo for years until mine died, replaced it with the G13. Would recommend either one to anyone who wants a game pad with the added ability to create macros outside of games.

deekay_plus
Reader
deekay_plus

wow dunno how you could go from a nostromo to a g13 >> they are just so different despite being similar types of devices.

Reader
Reht

Not really, at least not for me. It really wasn’t a big deal for me, while i sort of missed the scroll wheel from the n52, but i actually ended up preferring the thumb stick and thumb buttons over the joystick pad. The hardest thing for me was retraining my hand (muscle memory as you well know) to use the extra keys, but in the beginning if i was having a problem mishitting a button (from where it was on the n52) i just mapped that key to the same key.

The new ones look a little more ergonomic to me, when i get tired of the G13 or it dies, i will probably get one since i have migrated to razer mouse and keyboard already.

deekay_plus
Reader
deekay_plus

i didn’t like the way the g13 felt in my hand.

i was initially attracted to these things by ummm geez wtf was that thing called? zboard? glad i didn’t get on that train LOL

Reader
Reht

Yeah, i played around with a zboard and didn’t like it – i looked at it when i was looking at replacements. I got on the Nostromo train when it was the only option, started using it sometime after DAoC: Shrouded Isles came out, around 2003ish i think, and it opened up a whole new level to PvP/RvR.

deekay_plus
Reader
deekay_plus

i got on the nostromo train in 01/02 with bf42 dc with the n50 which wasn’;t rebindable and i needed to have parachutes handy for roof jumping.

it turned my kd score on it’s head over night.

the other game was css which buy macros got me ready to play asap.

don’t really use macros since but it does help for a different iteration of the old esdf mmo keybind paradgm with less of a headache.

recomended it to many over teh years but many of them if they even try them take too much issue with them initially to give them a serious go. idk maybe those of us they catch on with just have a hunger for what they offer before we even try them.

deekay_plus
Reader
deekay_plus

i’m a nostromo guy myself. and yeah it does wonders for my wrist. as well as just being alot more pleasant to use especially when you can’t change keybinds (or saving alot of hassle of rebinds between games).

plus the functionality of those thumb buttons!

Reader
Cosmic Cleric

The mini-keyboard in the article picture, what make/model, anyone know?

Xijit
Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Xijit

http://a.co/g23cYtV

This is the one that I have for my media center PC … works perfect.

Xijit
Reader
Kickstarter Donor
Xijit
Reader
Cosmic Cleric

Ty for both!

Reader
Oleg Chebeneev

Last week I ordered ZTE Axon 7 smartphone from Gearbest. The model is over a year old but still much more powerful then my old TCL Idol X and I love its musical capabilities.

deekay_plus
Reader
deekay_plus

i’ve been rocking the blackberry keyone since april. killer phone if you desire a pkb and clean android flavour. runs animal crossing like a boss too!

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