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How To Create the Perfect Gaming and Work PC

I take a look at some dual-purpose PC scenarios, where combining work or skill development with gaming on the same system is the outcome you're looking for.


Create the perfect gaming and work PC


How To Create the Perfect Gaming and Work PC

If, like me, you're a gamer that works at home - whether a fully-fledged or hybrid WFH employee, or to develop your own skills in your free time - your PC needs to be able to keep up with your needs. Working at home should offer you the comfort and personal space to focus on getting through your workload interruption free, whatever that workload might be.

In most cases it's much easier to work on a gaming PC than it is to game on a work PC, as gaming typically demands a higher PC spec. So unless your job is to 3D design and render Na'vi for James Cameron you'll be best off evaluating the hardware requirements of your gaming needs first. Most workplace tasks don't require an RTX 4080, for example - but if you want to play, for example, Starfield on 1440p in Ultra settings when it releases in September, you might want to take this into consideration when shopping for your build.

Take a look at the recommended spec for some of the games you want to play, and consider the highest one you find to be the minimum you want to aim for - as you'll want to continue playing games at that level for a number of years.

If you need some help with this, you can always check out our PCs by Game section for some guidance, if we've covered the games you want to play.


Home Office & Casual Gaming PCs

If the extent of your gaming needs is some after-work chill time in League of Legends, Fortnite, Minecraft, or one of the many thousand lofi indy games out there then you likely don't need a big stonking graphics card turning your otherwise peaceful PC into an electricity munching box of polygon domination. In-fact, maybe you don't need a graphics card at all.

The game titles I've mentioned, along with many, many others, can be comfortably played with an APU such as AMD's Ryzen 5700G, and YouTube is filled with the FPS benchmarks to prove it. These processors act as both CPU and GPU, freeing you from the obligation of a dedicated graphics card when buying one isn't necessarily practical. Plus you can always add a graphics card later down the line, should your demands and expectations change.

If you're considering this as an option, take into account that APUs don't have their own memory like a dedicated graphics card does, meaning they rely on your system memory (RAM) instead. This isn't an issue by means, but it means you'll be looking at a minimum of 16GB RAM, preferably running at 3600MHz, especially if you're the type of person that likes leaving a thousand Chrome tabs, Discord, Excel and Word open in the background when you're firing up your games at the end of the day. Personally, I'd opt to go all the way up to 32GB RAM as I am unfortunately exactly that person, and I'd rather have the buffer than not.


If you're setting up a PC for dual purposes, you're going to want to ensure you can keep your work and personal files apart. The ideal way to approach this is to use an internal NVMe for your system, with an external hard drive for your work files. This gives you the freedom to disconnect your work drive and take it into the office with you if needed, providing an easy, physical separation between your two purposes.

Here's an example of the type of PC specification you might want to consider for a Home Office & Casual Gaming PC - you'd need to shop for the external hard drive separately.

Horizon Integra 7X AMD Gaming PC

Great base gaming system with scope to add a GPU for AAA 1080p gaming
3.8GHz AMD Ryzen 7-5700G 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, WiFi

£456.99 inc VAT

CCL Code: HZN-IGPAA0201010000010000000004|
Part Number: HZN-IGPAA0201010000010000000004
|Manufacturer: HORIZON

Gaming & Design Workstation PCs

If you need a PC capable of supporting your Adobe Photoshop, Premiere and After-Effects workflow, the likelihood is you're not far off a gaming spec already - you should be looking at a mid-range processor upwards, such as an Intel Core i5 or AMD Ryzen 5, along with an NVMe SSD, a minimum of 16GB DDR4 RAM and a graphics card that'll cater to your needs.

Where the GPU is concerned, you don't need the latest and greatest to get through your creative workload in most cases, and this is often CPU intensive so if you feel your professional software demands are actually greater than those of your gaming habit, you can look to go up to a more powerful processor, while keeping your graphics card spend to a more reasonable level. If you like to play the latest AAA+ titles however, you're going to need to invest in a solid GPU that will last you the next 5 or more years, in which case I'd recommend hardware on the level of RTX 4070 - RTX 4090 depending on your budget.

This should give you enough power to game and create comfortably, without having to put up with your PC struggling along the way - particularly if you're using large, high-resolution monitors in the 1440p to 4k range.

As a gamer and regular Photoshop user with dual 1440p displays, I've found a the combination of AMD 5600X and RTX 3070 has offered plenty of power over the last couple of years, but if I were shopping for something new now, I'd ship up to 40-series with something like the below.

  • 2.5GHz Intel Core i5-12400F with 12GB NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4070 Ti Graphics
  • 16GB RAM, 1TB SSD, WiFi

£1,399.99 inc VAT

CCL Code: HZN-LIGHTNING0100000000000000000001|
Part Number: HZN-LIGHTNING0100000000000000000001
|Manufacturer: HORIZON


Things to Consider: Peripherals

  1. Don't underestimate the value of good peripherals - otherwise you'll have a mouse with a broken wheel and squidgy buttons inside of a year. You'll be using these accessories twice as much as you would normally, throughout your work day and then again in your free time, so it's worth having a keyboard and mouse that are reliable and comfortable to use.
  2. Same goes for your headset - if you're working from home you're going to be on Teams calls regularly, and probably using the same headset to listen to music. If you play multiplayer games in the evening you'll want to either invest in a solid gaming headset with a mic, or a pair of reasonable headphones and a separate desk mic. The latter looks a bit more respectable on a video call if you're not in a gaming-adjacent industry.
  3. Monitors! Invest appropriately for the task at hand - Excel and Minecraft don't require 144Hz refresh speeds or 4K resolution, but you're likely multi-tasking, so two, or even three monitors in extreme cases can be invaluable. If you're playing fast-paced esport titles however, a pair of 144Hz monitors might be back on your shopping list.