If you’re looking to buy a new desktop PC for work, gaming, or both, then you might want to check out today’s Prime Day deals, but with the first day of the sale nearing the end point, there’s no time to waste. Whether it’s for your home office or to upgrade your gaming setup (or maybe you use your computer for both), there’s sure to be a great PC deal waiting for you here. Along with Black Friday, these Prime Day sales offer the best opportunity of the entire year to shop for pricey electronics, although the best offers don’t last long.
We can give you a head start though, with this roundup of the best Prime Day PC sales on everything from desktop setups and hardware components to must-have accessories. With so many people now working and studying from home, there’s never been a better time to grab some new gear. We’ve also put together some tips and pointers for how to shop the sale as well as how to choose the right PC for your needs and budget, and if you’re looking for some more stuff for your home office, check out these Prime Day laptop deals, Prime Day monitor deals, and Prime Day headphone deals as well.
Best Prime Day PC deals
Should you buy a new PC on Prime Day?
If you need a new PC then the answer is clear — yes, you should absolutely buy a new computer during Prime Day. Technology is far and away one of Prime Day’s strongest areas and these Prime Day PC sales are likely to be the best you’ll see until Black Friday arrives in late November (and Cyber Monday a few days after that). With more people than ever working and studying from home, there’s never a bad time to upgrade your PC setup if you count yourself among that number.
We also don’t recommend waiting until Black Friday and Cyber Week sales in the hopes of getting a better deal; the Prime Day bargains are as good as they come (on par with those of Black Friday, at least), so you don’t gain much by waiting. Another thing to consider is Amazon’s generous return policy, which virtually eliminates any risk of you being stuck with a purchase that ends up not being a good fit for your needs.
Everything from great gaming towers to budget desktops for home office purposes is getting markdowns right now. However, before making a purchase, decide on a budget limit and stick with it. It’s tempting during seasonal sales to get excited and go over budget, but it’s not always smart. Read up on our guide to the best desktop computers so you know what you’re looking for, and don’t be tempted by insignificant discounts. Some Prime Day PC deals aren’t as sweet as others so check to see if the discount is truly substantial enough to be worth your time and money.
Finally, don’t assume that you need a Prime membership to take advantage of these sales, either. More and more retailers — especially Best Buy, Walmart, and Newegg — are rolling out their own Prime Day PC deals concurrent with Amazon’s blowout in order to steal some market share. These offers are generally every bit as good as those you’ll find on Amazon, so don’t over-limit your search.
How to choose a new PC on Prime Day
There are a couple of important things to establish before you dive into these Prime Day PC deals: First things first; set a budget. This can be flexible, of course, but you don’t want to let yourself get carried away and end up overspending. Remember, you still need some cash left over to complete your work or gaming battle station with one of the best computer monitors, a good set of speakers, some immersive headphones (if you don’t already have them), and possibly some upgraded accessories like a mechanical keyboard if you want something better than the basic wired mouse and keys that most desktop towers come packaged with.
Secondly, have at least a general idea of what sort of PC you need — maybe even jot down a list of must-have features along with some optional conveniences you’d like to get you thinking — so you don’t end up with a computer that isn’t a good fit for your work and lifestyle. Do you want one of the best gaming desktops with one of the best graphics cards and boosted RAM, or is a relatively basic workstation good enough for your day-to-day computing tasks? Are you interested in dispensing with the PC tower altogether and opting for something like an all-in-one or a mini PC instead? Form an image of what you want ahead of time to ensure you can zero in on the perfect Prime Day PC deals for you.
Hardware is naturally the most important thing you need to consider when shopping these Prime Day PC sales. As with most retail events, last-gen stuff is often the most heavily discounted. Many outlets use sales like this to thin out old inventory and Amazon is no exception, but be careful — you don’t want to get stuck with something that’s too long in the tooth by today’s performance standards. Make sure you look closely at hardware specifications (namely the CPU, RAM, and GPU if the PC has a discrete graphics card) along with professional reviews and user ratings to see how well it’ll hold up to modern workloads.
Any good, up-to-date computer should feature a 10th- or 11th-generation Intel Core or AMD Ryzen CPU, at least 8GB of DDR4 RAM (16GB is much better), and a solid-state drive, of which we generally recommend 256GB or larger. If you’re going super-cheap, however, then a ninth-gen Core CPU, 4GB of RAM, and 128GB SSD aren’t exactly terrible specs for a budget workstation, but you’re going to end up wishing you had stronger hardware if you’re frequently multitasking or doing resource-heavy jobs like video editing. In the sub-$500 bracket, you can easily find PCs sporting Ryzen CPUs and 8GB of RAM that punch well above their weight. On the bright side, most desktop PCs can be upgraded later if need be.
One final consideration is your graphics card, which is a necessity for gaming PCs in particular but is also very useful for editing and rendering videos. Again, don’t go too cheap here; there are still computers floating around with the old Nvidia 10-series cards and we don’t recommend them. Stick with the newer Nvidia GeForce GTX 16 series, RTX 20 series, or the new 30 series if you can find a deal on one, as well as AMD Radeon RX 500 and 5000 series cards.
Digital Trends may earn commission on products purchased through our links, which supports the work we do for our readers.