The Best $2000 High-End Content Creation PC Build – January 2023
Calling All Serious Content Creators!
If you’re looking to put together the ultimate video editing PC at a mainstream price, this is the guide for you! Rather than try to tweak gaming-focused builds to make them a better match for heavy Photoshop, Premiere Pro, and similar application use, just build one that’s designed for content creation from the start! Sure, you could game on this system, but the components have been chosen specifically to maximize application performance and minimize noise, which is what we think professional video editors will value the most.
This Month’s Build, Featuring AMD and Nvidia!
For January 2023, the High-End Content Creation swaps over to the AMD Ryzen 9 7900X, a 12-core, 24-thread productivity powerhouse. After a big price cut, it’s now the clear choice over the slower, more power hungry Intel Core i7-13700KF CPU that we previously recommended. The 7900X is massively fast in both single-threaded and multi-threaded applications. For graphics, this system features the potent Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 Ti 8GB GPU, which offers a huge amount of of app acceleration capability, along with simultaneous support for up to four 4K monitors!
Backing up the CPU and GPU is 32GB of ultra-high-speed DDR5-6000 RAM and a 2TB PCIe 4.0 solid-state drive, offering extraordinary I/O throughput. To put the finishing touches on this build, we suggest you equip it with an efficient fully-modular power supply, install it in the quiet, professionally-styled SilverStone Seta A1 case, and cool it with the legendary Noctua NH-D15 tower cooler. This will give you a silent-running, workstation-class system.
If you’re looking to complete your system, you’ll find our recommendations on the perfect peripherals for a content creation PC later on this page. We use Amazon affiliate links for our readers in the US, which will auto-convert for our readers in the UK, Canada, and parts of the EU, with regional substitutions made automatically based on availability. To support this site, please use these links if you purchase any of the products we list.
AMD Ryzen 9 7900X$420AMD has done it again with Zen 4, simply smashing through performance barrier in all respects. The 12-core, 24-thread Ryzen 9 7900X is up to 15% faster in games and 30% faster in content creation than its predecessor, while offering the latest connectivity standards thanks to the AM5 platform.
Of note, this CPU has built-in graphics, so the motherboard can support a monitor without a graphics card installed, but of course we're adding one in this build for acceleration and much more robust connectivity options.
MSI Pro X670-P WiFi$290This feature-rich X670 board from MSI allows you to tap into the potential of AMD’s cutting-edge AM5 platform at a great price. You get a potent 14+2+1 Phase power solution, a PCIe Gen 4 video card slot plus three additional slots, and four M.2 slots (one being Gen 5, the others Gen 4). On the back you have 8 USB ports, two being Type-C, and one of these being a blazing-fast 20Gbps port, plus built-in WiFi 6E. Topping it off is the high-end Realtek ALC4080 audio codec.
As with all AM5 boards, this one requires DDR5 memory, and we have the ideal match in this guide.
Video Card –
Zotac GeForce RTX 3060 Ti Twin Edge 8GB$410The GeForce 3060 Ti 8GB Twin Edge from Zotac offers tremendous performance at a great price, along with impressive energy efficiency and compact overall dimensions.
With its HDMI 2.1 port and triple DisplayPort 1.4 outputs, this card can support up to four 4K monitors simultaneously, and it will provide a huge boost in rendering and other GPU-intensive tasks!
G.Skill 2x16GB Flare X5 DDR5-6000 CL32 EXPO$165To get the most out of AMD’s latest CPUs, you want fast RAM, and DDR5-6000 is the sweetspot not only in terms of price, but in terms of the AM5 platform. It allows for the highest overall performance thanks to running in 1:1 sync with the memory controller. And this Flare X5 kit from G.Skill is specially designed for AM5, thanks to the enhanced 32-38-38-96 AMD EXPO timings.
Remember to engage the EXPO profile in the motherboard's UEFI to get the most out of this fast RAM.
Solid-State Drive –
WD_Black SN850X 2TB NVMe$180WD took its vaunted SN850 and endowed with even greater speed, creating the 850X. Powered by amazingly-fast NAND flash, and offering transfer speeds up to 7,300MB/s, it’s the one you want!
The speed of this drive will be put to good use in a serious content creation machine. If you'd like to split out your OS and swap drive for even better throughput, just pick up two 1TB drives.
SilverStone Seta A1 Silver$135The Seta A1 from SilverStone is a true watershed product in the case market. Designed around maximizing airflow while providing a professional exterior, the Seta A1 does something no other case can do: give you maximum performance, ultra-quiet operation, and a stylish aluminum front panel all in one package. The key to the A1’s excellent performance are the dual 200mm fans hidden behind that front panel, which spin at a maximum of just 800RPM, meaning they’re far quieter than typical 120mm fans, while producing tremendous airflow.
This case was originally designed as a gaming case, but its professional looks and ultra-quiet operation make it perfect for a content creation PC.
Power Supply –
Corsair RM650$95Corsair offers a ton of value in its RM line, and this model is no exception. You get 650W of Gold-rated power, fully-modular cables, and a fan that doesn’t even spin at low loads for total silence. The best part: a full 10-year warranty.
The price on this quality unit is well below its lower-wattage, lower-efficiency competitors!
CPU Cooler –
Noctua NH-D15 chromax.black$110Noctua has always dominated when it comes to air-based cooling performance, and if you want nothing but the very best in high-powered air cooling, you want the NH-D15. The latest chromax.Black edition of course comes in all-black, which means you don’t have to make excuses for Noctua’s odd beige color schemes anymore! It’s the best air cooler on the market, period, and can beat nearly every 240mm liquid cooler too!
This cooler has all the necessary mounting hardware for the AM5 platform.
Operating System –
Windows 11 Home USB$139Windows 11 take everything people loved about Windows 10, and then takes it to 11! It adds significant under-the-hood changes to make it faster and more secure, and of course, the interface is sleek too!
Win11 is definitely what you want on a new PC!
Sound Card –
Creative Sound Blaster AE-7$210 The Guru’s Tip
Stepping up to a dedicated sound card is a good choice if you do a lot of audio work.
The Ultimate Business Keyboard –
Logitech MX Keys Wireless Illuminated Keyboard$120 The Guru’s Tip
Logitech really leapfrogged the competition when it released this keyboard, and no one is close to catching up!
The Deluxe Wireless Mouse –
Logitech MX Master 3S$100 The Guru’s Tip
Perhaps the coolest feature of this mouse from a content creator's perspective is the Flow cross-computer control, which allows you to work seamlessly on three computers without the need for a KVM switch.
The Deluxe PC Headset –
Corsair Virtuoso Wireless Headset$174 The Guru’s Tip
We've used this as our daily driver since it was released, and we have no intention of ever giving it up!
The 32-inch Professional 4K Monitor –
LG 32UN650-W$430 The Guru’s Tip
We figure that any serious content creator is going to want a true 4K monitor rather than a standard or ultra-wide 1440p monitor.
Total Cost: $1934
- CPU – AMD Ryzen 9 7900X ($420)
- Motherboard – MSI Pro X670-P WiFi ($290)
- Video Card – Zotac GeForce RTX 3060 Ti Twin Edge 8GB ($410)
- Memory – G.Skill 2x16GB Flare X5 DDR5-6000 CL32 EXPO ($165)
- Solid-State Drive – WD_Black SN850X 2TB NVMe ($180)
- Case – SilverStone Seta A1 Silver ($135)
- Power Supply – Corsair RM650 ($95)
- CPU Cooler – Noctua NH-D15 chromax.black ($110)
- Operating System – Windows 11 Home USB ($139)
- Sound Card – Creative Sound Blaster AE-7 ($210)
- The Ultimate Business Keyboard – Logitech MX Keys Wireless Illuminated Keyboard ($120)
- The Deluxe Wireless Mouse – Logitech MX Master 3S ($100)
- The Deluxe PC Headset – Corsair Virtuoso Wireless Headset ($174)
- The 32-inch Professional 4K Monitor – LG 32UN650-W ($430)