Time is going forward and with that, new hardware is invented. A strong VR PC isn’t hard to make, and today I will help you with finding the perfect PC hardware for VR games that makes you completely immune to upcoming newer Oculus Rift’s, HTC Vive devices, or any VR market changes in general. That way you won’t have to switch to better builds for many years.
I’ve done a VR PC article a few years back, and since it’s a bit outdated, I thought of making a new improved PC guideline for fellow VR-erers. I’ve been in the VR industry for YEARS, and these are my recommendations:
By the way, if you don’t know how to assemble a VR PC, follow this super easy guide ↓↓. It doesn’t take much time, and you will be VR ready like the rest of us.
Bronze – BUDGET VR PC BUILD
Introduction to the build
This build is super cheap. I’ve done an extensive research on how to make this build as cheap as possible, while at the same time be powerful enough to fall under VR requirements’ umbrella. However, this build costs only 600 freaking dollars, so we are playing with fire to some degree. Whatever the case, don’t be fooled by its cheapness. It has a lot of kick to it.
GTX 1050ti came out last year, and is pretty good considering how low the price is for it. I mean, if we look at Amazon, it costs only 139 dollars, and is #1 Best Seller in the GPU apartment (by the way, for this cheap VR PC build I picked many products that are #1 Best Sellers).
Pascal family release really helped VR and people with tight budget to enter the playground without VR motion sickness. VR PC building doesn’t cost as much as few years ago, and you can play almost every game at max settings with this GPU, as long as you have a 1080p monitor.
Since it’s from Pascal family, you get to enjoy the latest GPU architecture which in turn gives you DX12 support, GDDR5 memory, and all kinds of different technologies that you may read more from here.
You might run into some people saying that this graphics card isn’t VR ready, but it is. Some people I’ve noticed have confused this GPU with GTX 1050, an inferior version, which is understandable. Plus, there have been many updates that make this GPU more capable under VR pressure.
FX-8350 is the one I’ve picked for this build. Although these days Intel is what people suggest to get, AMD is not something you should ignore. In spite of the fact that this CPU is using an older technology, it is a beast, and is definitely a good pick for people who want to go on a cheaper route.
It has weathered many storms over the years, has been used to play many games, and with each year it has delivered high to ULTRA visuals to users (at 1080p). Can it handle VR games though?
Yes, it can. VR does not ask much from processors so in theory I could’ve picked even a cheaper CPU. People have reported of using this 8 core FX-8350 processor in VR games without any issues, so going with this one is a safe bet. Plus, it goes well with other hardware I’ve picked in terms of overclocking. I’m looking at you, motherf… board.
We are going to go with MSI 970 Gaming DDR3 2133 motherboard this time. Although also not the newest one, it has proven itself to be highly reliable, popular, and do-its-job kind of MOBO. It is cheap, and fits well with other components of this VR PC.
We can’t go with DDR4 (latest memory) supported motherboards due to unsuitable hardware (CPU, RAM), and if we go with them, price will also go up tremendously . But do not worry! Though we can’t enjoy the latest technology, it is capable to keep up with games we want to play. Even if you feel like some frames are missing, this motherboard has fantastic overclocking abilities.
Another extremely reliable component for this VR PC build is Corsair Vengeance RAM. It is of DD3 memory, 1600MHz speed, and if not enough, can be overclocked with ease.
We will go with 16GB of memory, so that you won’t have to worry about future games failing on you due to not enough RAM memory. For example, Battlefield 1 and Mass Effect: Andromeda already require 16GB, and you can be 100% sure that as time goes on, the more games will require what you will have if you go with this build.
As long as “I want newer RAM technology” or “want higher clock speeds”, I tell you this: I doesn’t even matter right now. RAM is important but not as important for us to change an entire build that raises the price by 200-300 dollars.
You are going to be completely fine with this RAM for now.
I’ve decided to go with SSD this time. For you that don’t know, in storage world there are 2 drives: HDD and SSD.
HDD can store more files in it and is cheaper, but SSD is newer and makes your computer run and open files 3 times faster, as long as windows is installed onto SSD drive.
We will not just go with any regular SSD drive, but with Samsung 850 EVO one. If you don’t know how good it is, got to the Amazon link, and check out the reviews for it. It has LITERALLY over 15,000 customer reviews, with MAX 5/5 rating…
It is super rare that a component gets such good reviews while at the same time have so many people buying it. It truly speaks for itself.
Although the only downside is the amount of room for games (100GB for Windows which leaves you 150GB for other files), you can mix it with HDD drive if you so desire. Either buy an additional one, or use the one you already have, considering you have a computer.
With this SSD you can load up games and levels extremely fast, and won’t have to take a coffee break every time you die in Witcher 3.
These are the ones I did not include in the price since you probably already have them. If not, check out the following products:
PC Case: I cannot really pick for you since you probably might have a different taste in terms of how it looks. But in my opinion, this one looks very good, doesn’t cost much, and is compatible with this budget VR PC build. If you want to check out another case, go to this Amazon link.
Windows: You probably already have a Windows system file, but if you don’t, I would advise you to buy Windows 10. It will scale well with VR PC builds. Check out this awesome Windows 7 vs 10 article!
Keyboard and mouse: Who needs keyboard and mouse when you in VR, am I right? Well, sadly we all need. Technology not there to abandon them just yet. Check out these combos and pick the one you like!
Silver – GOOD VR PC BUILD
Introduction to the build
This build is for those who want to enjoy all the benefits of modern games, and have some power in reserve for future games. You will be able to play all the VR games (plus vorpX games) at max settings, and even enjoy 1440p gaming if you so desire. All the parts are picked to have the latest technology compatibility, which means they sync together well for even more performance.
GTX 1070 is a second card in Pascal family. Although it’s not as recent as GTX 1080ti, it is still in the family, and has a lot of the same features that the latest ones have. I am specifically talking about a simultaneous multi-projection technology. With this latest feature, you can get an extra performance boost in VR as long as you have this card, and a game that supports SMP.
Even though that technology is more targeted for future VR games that will have higher graphical fidelity and demands, it can nonetheless be used right now for that extra smoothness in the VR world.
If we take VR out of the equation, you are still left with a beast that can play ANY game at 1440p resolution, and deliver 60 frames per second with ease. That’s why on the internet everyone is calling this card a 1440p king. However, it falls short if you are into 4K gaming world. For that I would suggest to check out my God Tier VR PC build.
But if you don’t want to spend too much money, while at the same time have a solid VR PC, GTX 1070 is a perfect fit. It’s very efficient with power, runs super quiet, and performs marvelously for its price.
VR doesn’t utilize CPU power at the moment, so getting a VR ready CPU is extremely easy. They don’t cost much, and perform well.
i5 6600k processor, one of the previous Skylake family processors, leaves you a lot of wiggle room to play different games, as well as perform any CPU intensive work. Even if you feel like you don’t have enough performance, 6600k gives you ton of room to overclock it. And the crazy part is, it consumes so little power, I would have thought it’s anorexic. It takes only 25 Watts in idle mode, and 65 under load.
Really a fantastic choice that is not too expensive but can hold its own against any VR PC games and regular games. Plus it synergises great with GTX 1070 which I’ve included in this build, as well as with the motherboard I will talk below about.
Motherboard is like a mother of a system. It is connected to everyone, and commands everyone to do their job. Some motherboards are good, some bad, and some just don’t perform well with its components. I’ve picked the one that does not complain (no pun intended), has latest Z270F chipset, is super friendly with overclocking, and most importantly, is ready to be upgraded with better VR hardware if the need is there (from 6600K to 7600k for example).
It is ready to use DDR4 memory for that extra performance, and have all kinds of future ready components (talking about Intel Optane Technology that is compatible in my God Tier VR PC build).
So all in all, a solid motherboard that is ready to handle everything you throw at it.
I picked this RAM because of the price to value ratio. It performs superbly, has a latest DDR4 memory which scales well with the motherboard and CPU mentioned above, and is reliable to such degree that it has a lifetime warranty on it.
We are not going to go with 32GB version yet since we need to keep the price of the whole VR PC system at bay. However, at the moment, 16GB is perfectly fine in 2018, and probably 2019, unless something crazy changes.
Usually design doesn’t matter, but if you are going to choose a PC case I’ve picked below, you will see all the interior, and luckily, RAM will not stick out like a sore thumb.
We are going to stick with Samsung 850 EVO 500GB version of SSD. Reason?
It’s just too darn good. I could’ve picked a Crucial MX300 one that is 15 bucks cheaper, but decided against it, and go with Samsung, which is literally 10 times more popular. And there is a reason it has 15,000 customer reviews on Amazon with 5/5 rating. It is endurable, reliable, efficient, has super easy installation, and doesn’t cost a ton.
I also could’ve gone with Samsung PRO version that costs almost twice as much, but it isn’t worth for this build. The lifetime of your SSD might have improved a bit alongside with faster boot time, but that’s it. Sticking with the one I picked is the best option for silver build. Your computer will boot super quickly, programs open within milliseconds, and VR games will load extremely fast.
If not sure whether to buy this storage device, check out those 15,000 reviews on Amazon. I’m sure minds will be changed.
EVGA SuperNOVA 650 G2 is the we are going to pick. The same model I’ve used in other VR PC builds. It’s just reliable and good. No other reason is needed. We don’t need to spend ton on money on components like that. As long as it has a good track record, it is good to go, no matter what beast it needs to power up.
As with all my power supply picks, it is GOLD certified – which means very good efficiency with energy under different loads, and it is G2, under the quotes “Unbeatable Performance” (There is also G1 that I use for my budget VR PC build, and G3 that I use for God Tier VR PC build).
These are not included in the price since you probably already have them. If not, feel free to check out the following components:
PC Case: Absolutely your own choice. You may pick whatever you want. Usually with cases, aesthetics are the most important things to consider… and in my opinion, this one looks great. All the hardware will fit inside, and you get that cool looking black/green styled box in your room. But if you don’t like, check out others on Amazon.
Windows: Go with Windows 10. There are many benefits to gain from that Windows. It’s familiar enough to Windows 7 users, and you can all the performance.
Keyboard and mouse: That is also something you yourself have to choose. Just check this Amazon link and pick whatever you want.
Gold – GOD TIER VR PC BUILD
Introduction to the build
At this current moment, you won’t find a computer that is better than this one at this price. Not only does it perform superbly, but it is ready to tackle VR games for years to come. VR market is fluctuating hard with all the VR headsets coming out, all of them with different specs. Can PC’s handle the variety and demands that VR requires? No, but this one can.
A superb VR PC build that towers above all others.
As most of you may know, the most important part of the PC is the graphics card, at least for VR. You may have a Nimbus 2000 with an external KITT turboboost beast of a computer, but if only the GPU is bad, whole system is worthless for VR. Getting a good frame rate can only be achieved if you pick the right graphics card. And we pick not only a good graphics card, but the one that makes other GPU’s blush.
GTX 1080ti has been out for a few months, and is already a must pick for some gamers. Although VR is challenging in terms of needed performance, it excels even further and can run any current AAA game with 4K resolution at steady 60fps. That requires a 4K monitor of course and a desire to play games with such resolution, but hey, why not. If you are not fiddling with virtual reality, playing 4K games will make your eyes wet for sure. At least that’s what it felt like when I played Witcher 3 with 1440p monitor for the first time. I’ve yet to experience 4K myself since I don’t have as much money at the moment. But once I will, getting a 4K rig is on top of my list.
My version of GTX 1080ti is easily overclockable, and provides superb performance without making any to little noise. It has an improved cooling due to really good fan design, If you are unsure whether to buy this beast for your VR PC, feel free to check out reviews below on Amazon. Pretty much everyone confirms as to how good it is.
This recently released processor is giving everyone a hard time due to simply being better than anything else. You want performance? You got it!
I do have to say it though. If you already have a good CPU from within a Skylake family, don’t upgrade. Although there is a slight performance bonus, it isn’t THAT big. And considering that VR and gaming in general doesn’t use CPU power all that much, at least right now, spending a lot of money ain’t worth it. When it will, I will let you know for sure.
However, if you are still rockin’ a potato instead of a solid CPU, investing into 7700k is a good idea. You will be super safe from all the changes in the future (2-3 years) and it won’t let you down.
Even if you find out that your CPU is starting to bottleneck your VR PC system for whatever reason, overclocking it is as easy and powerful as ever. Even previous generation couldn’t overclock as much as this one.
You will find no other CPU as good as this one for VR gamers.
It’s 2018. Time is moving fast. Just a few years ago we would have said that 16GB is overkill, but look at us know. While some may say that 32GB you’re offering is too much, I say that I am just looking out to make your VR PC as future-proof as possible. Why waste RAM slots on sticks that may become a nuisance in the future?
And not only are we getting 32GB RAM sticks, we are getting the best ones. 3000MHz memory speed, dual 16GB modules for 2 slots, using freshest DDR4 RAM (although there are news of DDR5, they ain’t coming anytime soon).
This RAM I am talking about is fully optimized for a 7th generation CPU, as well as for a motherboard I suggest you to buy. By getting everything here, you will be sure to have a setup that not only is made as a king of VR gaming, but is synced to work together for even more performance.
But enough of RAM, aka. short-term memory. Lets talk about long-term memory hardware.
If you are somewhat computer savvy, you’ll know that HDD is a nightmare these days. Your PC starts for ages, and if you want some work done, computer is like ‘nope’, you wait your butt for me, no cutting lines. And you wait and wait till the last remaining nerves are burnt. Also don’t get me started on loading screens in-game. When I had HDD, dying in Witcher 3 pissed me off not because I performed badly or anything of that nature, it irritated me because I had to wait half a minute to respawn – that’s how long it took to load the scene with HDD.
And now that I have SSD (almost typed STD) I can pick Genji in Overwatch faster than anyone else when it loads a character screen. The benefits of having a faster computer.
Samsung 850 PRO works wonders for everything you do. Although VR games are not as big as GTA, Witcher, or some MMO games, they will still grow in size, and that means sooner you have an appropriate storage device, the better.
Example of bootup time:
This great SSD has been a top choice for many tech sites, and I wholeheartedly agree. Great piece of hardware!
With an Amazon link below, you can choose what size of hard drive you want. Below one is 512GB, operating system only needs around 100, leaving 400GB of space for any game you want. However, if you want more or less, just change capacity to something different.
ASUS Maximus IX Hero. It literally came out a few days ago when I did a thorough research for this article. I could have picked another motherboard but decided to wait on publishing this long VR PC guide, just so everything on my God Tier VR PC build is fitted perfectly for that maximum performance.
This motherboard here has a z270 chipset which came out just recently, and that means it supports Intel Optane Technology. With that your computer is super fast, improvements seen everywhere, from latency issues to load times in VR games, or games in general. Your browser is going to open 5 times faster, and that’s just a tip of the iceberg. You can watch more about it in a good video from LinusTechTips.
All in all, this MB is perfect for this build, and has many features for users to enjoy. Your VR games will be loading up so fast, and there will be no performance issues for years to come. I can guarantee you that.
EVGA SuperNOVA 650 G3 is an excellent power supply that is in great demand. I picked the one that lasts long, has great reviews, efficient, and doesn’t burn a hole in your wallet. I could have picked a pricier one, but this PSU is so good, it outperforms even the ones that are double the price.
You will have enough power to keep up with the VR PC system and have some in reserve.
These are not included in the price since you probably already have them. If not, feel free to check out the following components:
PC Case: Here I cannot make a choice for you. There aren’t many things to look out for when buying cases apart from how it looks and how big the case is (will motherboard fit basically).
Usually when I buy cases, I make sure it’s as sexy looking as I possibly can. When wife comes to my battlestation room, she can at least admire the beauty instead of complaining how long I stay in my room. So the following case I present to you is universally high rated, looks good, and is of high quality.
It has a lot of external ports, 5 fans, and a great side panel that lets you see the interior of your beast of a computer.
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