The Best $3,500 Ultimate Gaming PC Build – September 2021

By Ari Altman | Published September 2, 2021 | Updated September 12, 2021

Jump Into Ultra-High-End Gaming Today!

If you’re looking for the ultimate $3,500 Gaming PC Build, truly the best of the best, then this is the build for you! Sure, you could spend more, but in most games you won’t see better performance than what this PC Build can provide. It’s a showcase of the very best tech available in PC gaming today. And while the $3,500 Gaming PC Build isn’t exactly a bargain, it’s custom-tailored to deliver flat-out extreme gaming performance!

This Month’s Build, Powered by AMD!

For September 2021, the Ultimate $3,500 Gaming PC Build starts with AMD’s awesome Ryzen 7 5800X eight-core, 16-thread CPU, which offers better gaming performance than any other CPU. And it will finally have a worthy GPU to feed, thanks to the fact that AMD’s awesome Radeon RX 6900 XT 16GB is back in stock. We recommend an amazing factory-overclocked model, which puts anything Nvidia can offer to shame, and more importantly is actually available!

Of course, the rest of the system is up to the task of keeping this system fed with data, thanks to 32GB of ultra-high-speed DDR4-3600 RAM, along with a blazing-fast 2TB PCIe solid-state drive. Completing the $3,500 Gaming PC Build is the high-performance Cooler Master H500M case, a powerful 360mm liquid cooler, and an awesome 1000W Platinum-rated power supply!

Parting Thoughts

Note that we list a number of “Optional Components” at the end of this guide that highlight the accessories we think best match a system of this caliber, including our favorite keyboard, mouse, and monitor picks. To browse even more options, check out our Monitor Buyer’s Guide, Peripherals Buyer’s Guide and Speaker/ Headset Buyer’s Guide, which provide our picks for the best accessories at every pricepoint.

Throughout this guide, we provide direct links to Amazon, Newegg, or B&H, and our Amazon links will auto-convert for readers in the UK, Canada, and parts of the EU, with automatic substitutions being made where necessary. To help support the continued development of this guide, please use the links we provide if you purchase products we recommend.

The Pre-Built Option

  • The Ultra-High-End Gaming PC

    ABS Legend 5900X/RTX 3080 Ti @Newegg


    EXTREME DEAL! Not ready to build your own PC, or just want the best value in an ultra-high-end gaming PC? No problem! As of our latest update, this awesome system from Newegg’s ABS division is in stock but will definitely sell out fast. It’s equipped with the AMD Ryzen 9 5900X 12-core, 24-thread CPU, a 240mm liquid cooler, and the GeForce RTX 3080 Ti 12GB GPU. Also on board are 32GB of DDR4-3200 RAM, a 1TB PCIe Gen 4 solid-state drive, and an 850W Gold-rated PSU. ABS even includes an EVGA gaming mouse and keyboard in the box!

    The Guru’s Tip

    This system is simply awesome for the price, and actually comes out a bit ahead of the DIY build thanks to its 12-core CPU (we recommend an 8-core in our build), so take your pick... either one will rock!

The DIY Build

  • CPU

    AMD Ryzen 7 5800X

    Based on AMD’s revolutionary Zen 3 architecture, the Ryzen 7 5800X is a truly fantastic processor. It has 8 core and 16 threads all running from a single complex for maximum efficiency, with boost up to 4.7GHz. That means it’s actually the fastest processor available for single-threaded tasks, which many tasks still are.
    The Guru’s Tip

    This hot-rod CPU does not come with a cooler, and we recommend the perfect liquid cooler to keep it cool later in this guide.

  • Motherboard

    Gigabyte X570 Aorus Elite WIFI


    This feature-packed X570 board gives you everything you need for a PC build at a great price. Dual M.2 PCIe slots for high-speed SSDs (both being Gen 4), ten USB ports, and built-in  802.11ac networking and Bluetooth. It also has the ample power delivery system required to support a high-powered CPU.

    The Guru’s Tip

    This board even has dual USB 3.0 headers plus a Type-C header, allowing you to use all the front ports on this build's cutting-edge case. It's one of just a handful of motherboards on the market that support this advanced setup.

  • Video Card

    XFX Radeon RX 6900XT Speedster MERC319 Black 16GB


    Long name, but this one’s earned it! Step into gaming today with a video card that puts Nvidia non-existent GPUs to shame, the 6900XT Speedster MERC319 from XFX. Clocking in at a boost frequency of 2365MHz, this massive card can take on any game and put up amazing framerates! Plus, the custom triple-slot, triple-fan cooler looks great and works even better! Sure, the price is above the original MSRP, but everything’s been reset by the cryptocurrency mining craze, and this is a card that makes an RTX 3090 tremble!

    The Guru’s Tip

    It's been a long wait, but you can finally build a top-tier gaming PC again thanks to this extreme GPU!

  • Memory

    Crucial 2x16GB Ballistix RGB DDR4-3600 White


    For high-end gaming, we think 32GB of RAM is the perfect amount of RAM for today and years to come… it’s basically future-proof! Plus, this 2x16GB kit not only offers tons of capacity, but also a high speed of 3600MHz, along with seriously-tight timings of 16-18-18.

    The Guru’s Tip

    You can even sync this kit's lighting with the motherboard's RGB software.

  • Solid-State Drive

    XPG SX8200 Pro 2TB

    Harnessing the power of cutting-edge TLC V-NAND, the NVMe protocol, and the PCIe interface, this SSD provides amazing speed, along with an incredible 2TB of capacity! Just note that you’ll need a jeweler’s-type screwdriver to install it.
    The Guru’s Tip

    While this system is compatible with PCIe Gen 4 drives, we think you're much better off going with a larger Gen 3 drive, as Gen 4 does little for gaming performance, but more space does a lot... given that many new games can use 200GB of space!

  • Case

    Cooler Master MasterCase H500M @Newegg

    This awesome case offers fantastic performance and great gaming style in equal measure. With dual 200mm fans mounted up front, plus a 140mm fan in the rear, it provides a tremendous amount of airflow, while its sweet addressable RGB effects make it really pop. This case includes both glass and mesh front panels, to give you the option to maximize airflow or go for the sleekest look!
    The Guru’s Tip

    Note that this case has a USB port arrangement that virtually no motherboard supports: 4x USB 3.0 Type-A plus 1x USB 3.2 Type-C, but this build uses just such a motherboard!

  • Power Supply

    be quiet! Straight Power 11 Platinum 1000W


    be quiet! originated the silent PSU, and the Straight Power 11 is a perfect example of the latest innovations the company has to offer. Featuring 1000W of Platinum-rated power, a fully-modular cable design, and a high-end Silent Wings 3 135mm fan with funnel-shaped intake shroud, this is an exceptional choice for a premium PC build!

    The Guru’s Tip

    High-capacity PSUs continue to sell out regularly due to the cryptocurrency mining crisis, but luckily this one is restocked regularly!

  • CPU Cooler

    Arctic Liquid Freezer II 360 ARGB


    To run a high-wattage CPU, you need extreme cooling, and we suggest you go straight for this awesome 360mm liquid cooler, which offers the best performance of any 360mm AIO on the market based on our testing! That comes down to its big 38mm-thick radiator, effective pump, and the best ARGB fans on the market, the Arctic P12 A-RGB models. They provide both great looks and superior performance at low noise levels.

    The Guru’s Tip

    Backorder this if you need to, because it is worth the wait!

  • Operating System

    Windows 10 Home USB Flash Drive

    Windows 10 was a big step up from Windows 8.1, and Microsoft continues to support Windows 10 users not only with regular security updates, but with major content releases every six months. And the USB version installs in under 5 minutes, meaning you can get right into using your system!
    The Guru’s Tip

    Windows 11 is launching later this year, and it will be a free upgrade for owners of Win10!

Optional Products

  • The Typist's Gaming Keyboard

    Logitech G915 Wireless Mechanical Gaming Keyboard (Clicky) @Newegg

    Best. Keyboard. Ever. And the only wireless mechanical keyboard with full RGB lighting on the market. This thing is a dream come true, so sleek, so responsive. Honestly, it’s in a class of its own.
    The Guru’s Tip

    This is the keyboard we've used since it was released in late 2019, and we've never even considered using another!

  • The Ultimate Wireless Gaming Mouse

    Logitech G502 Lightspeed Wireless


    Logitech designed the G502 Lightspeed Wireless to be the ultimate technological tour de force in the gaming mouse industry. Featuring a mesmerizing 25K Hero sensor, tunable weights, RGB lighting, and the best wireless connectivity, it is impossible to beat. And you can even upgrade it to ultra-elite status with the optional PowerPlay charging mat, which allows you to use it forever without stopping to charge thanks to the exclusive wireless charging capability!

    The Guru’s Tip

    This is the mouse we've used since the day it was launched, and we love it!

  • The Deluxe PC Headset

    Corsair Virtuoso Wireless Headset

    Combining ultra-high-end performance with incredible comfort, this wireless headset from Corsair is the ideal all-day companion for listening to the latest market news. This headset also has an audiophile-grade microphone, perfect for teleconferencing.
    The Guru’s Tip

    Another feature we really like is the ultra-high quality mic. You'll be heard loud and clear on this headset, as it's a completely different league than any other headset on the market.

  • The 34-inch Widescreen Monitor

    LG 34GP83A-B


    LG has leapfrogged the competition in the gaming monitor space thanks to its clearly-superior tech. It’s definitely learned a thing or two from making the best TVs in the world! The 83A offers the very best specs you’ll find in its class, namely a 34” 3440 x 1440 curved Nano IPS panel with an amazing 1ms response time, an amazing 160 Hz refresh rate, DCI-P3 98% Color Gamut, and VESA DisplayHDR 400 certification. It’s of course equipped with AMD FreeSync Premium, which works with both AMD and Nvidia GPUs.

    The Guru’s Tip

    4K monitors are still catching up to the tech you can get in ultra-wides!

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