For the best $2000 PC build for gaming, we’re stepping up to the Intel Core i7-11700K CPU. This unlocked chip has 8 cores, 16 threads and the ability to boost up to 5 GHz when paired with an adequate AIO cooler like the NZXT Kraken X63. That makes the 10700K a much better value than the Core i9-11900K which currently costs $220 more.
For GPU, we’re recommending Nvidia’s RTX 3080 (see our RTX 3080 review) as the GPU, because you can fit it into the $2,000 budget, if you can actually find one selling for anywhere near the MSRP of $699 (or even $799). If you can’t get an RTX 3080 but can find a Radeon RX 6800 XT, which has a $649 launch price, that’s your closest alternative.
Even though this is a $2,000 PC build, we still have to make some compromises to hit our price point. That means that we’re sticking with 32GB of TeamGroup RAM rather than jumping to 64GB and, instead of upgrading to a single, M.2 PCIe 2TB SSD, we’re sticking with the sk Hynix Gold P31 1TB boot drive and adding an inexpensive Team Group GX2 1TB SATA SSD for storage.
If we had a higher budget, we could put some money into purchasing a more glamorous case, but instead we’ll go with the classy but affordable NZXT H510i, which provides plenty of space for fans in an elegant black or white design. You may, however, want to add a few dollars to buy your own front case fans.