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The 4 Best Custom PC Builders for Gamers & Professionals

Written by Azzief Khaliq
Last updated Apr 24, 2021

Affiliate Disclosure: When you purchase products through our links, we may receive a commission at no additional cost to you.

Pre-built custom PCs have been seeing a resurgence lately. Global supply issues mean that certain components like CPUs and GPUs have been almost impossible to get a hold of and overpriced when available. That’s where the best custom PC builders come into the picture. It’s easier, and sometimes even cheaper, to just get a PC built by one of these companies instead of tracking down the parts yourself.

Parts shortage aside, you might also be keen on a pre-built PC because you’re not confident about assembling your own PC. So, whether you’re looking for the best custom PC builder to bypass the parts shortage or to get a high-quality custom PC without having to build it yourself, our list should hopefully point you in the right direction.

Best Custom PC Builders At A Glance

Before we go in-depth, here are our top custom PC builders side-by-side to give you an idea of what we’ll be evaluating.

MAINGEARXidaxORIGIN pcPuget systems
AwardBest OverallBest WarrantyBest Component ChoiceBest for Professionals
SpecialtyGaming and workstationsGaming and workstationsGaming and workstationsWorkstations and servers
Price Range$700 - $15000$800 - $10000$2000 - $10000$2500 - $30000+
WarrantyLifetime labor, one-year partsLifetime labor, lifetime partsLifetime labor, one-year partsLifetime labor, one-year parts
DeliveryInternationalInternationalInternationalUSA

We’ll be rating each company based on warranty, component choice, aesthetics, and value. For our value ratings, we built a PC with each company and compared the quoted price with what it would cost to DIY the PC.

Note that our value ratings don’t consider shipping and the cost of your time spent building your own computer. Do bear both of those in mind when you’re looking at the price comparisons later in this article.

1. MAINGEAR

Best custom PC builder overall

Maingear Homepage

MAINGEAR has had a long history in custom PC building, since its establishment in 2002 in Kenilworth, New Jersey. The company is best known for its high-end PC builds but also offers more affordable PCs for mid-range and esports gamers.

MAINGEAR has both pre-configured systems and custom-built offerings. They offer five base systems for custom builds, while pre-configured systems are all based on their entry-level VYBE PC.

Warranty ★★★☆☆

MAINGEAR’s warranty policy is pretty standard as far as boutique PC builders go: a one-year warranty on parts paired with a lifetime warranty on labor and lifetime technical support. MAINGEAR offers two warranty upgrade options. There’s a two-year parts warranty for $99 and a three-year parts warranty for $199. At the time of writing, you can get a free two-year parts warranty on the company’s pre-configured systems with the promo code “friendsofmaingear.”

Component Choice ★★★☆☆

Maingear's CPU selection

MAINGEAR offers a decent component selection, although it’s not as comprehensive in select categories as other competitors. You get the expected choice of AMD Ryzen 5000-series and Intel 11th Gen CPUs, as well as AMD and Nvidia’s latest GPUs. However, you don’t get as many options for the rest of your system.

MAINGEAR only offers one or two options for your motherboard and CPU cooler, while RAM is exclusively HyperX products. PSUs are either EVGA units or MAINGEAR’s in-house brand. These aren’t bad parts, though, and we’d be happy to use any of them in our own builds.

All of MAINGEAR’s PCs can also be built with the company’s APEX custom water cooling loops. You have the choice of soft or hard tubing, as well as a vast number of coolant colors, including a custom color option.

Aesthetics ★★★★★

The MINGEAR VYBE custom PC

The MAINGEAR VYBE. Source: MAINGEAR

MAINGEAR uses its own cases for most of its PCs. The company has a signature design language, with clean lines and understated black and white finishes. We’re fans of the case design and also don’t mind their logo. Their branding is a lot less in-your-face than most other custom PC builders and looks great on the front of their cases.

A couple of MAINGEAR’s PCs also use the highly-regarded Lian Li O11 Dynamic, which is a case we love both for its aesthetics and cooling performance.

You can also opt for a custom paint job with automotive paint for an extra $399. There are six default colors to choose from and a custom color option if you want a truly personal touch.

Value ★★★☆☆

We customized a reasonably high-end MAINGEAR VYBE PC with the following parts:

CPUIntel Core i5-11600K
CPU CoolerMAINGEAR EPIC 240 mm AIO
MotherboardMSI MAG B560 Tomahawk WiFi
Memory16 GB HyperX Fury RGB 3600 MHz
SSD512 GB Intel 660p
HDD1 TB Seagate Barracuda
GPUNvidia GeForce RTX 3070
CaseMAINGEAR VYBE Mk. V
PSUEVGA SuperNOVA B2 750 W (80 Plus Bronze)
OSWindows 10 Home 64-bit
Total Cost$2252

For comparison, we specced out a DIY equivalent on PCPartPicker:

CPUIntel Core i5-11600K$259.99
CPU CoolerARCTIC Liquid Freezer II 240$99.99
MotherboardGigabyte B560 AORUS PRO AX$219.99
Memory16 GB HyperX Fury RGB 3600 MHz$125.99
SSD512 GB Intel 660p$62.99
HDD1 TB Seagate Barracuda$45.95
GPUASUS GeForce RTX 3070 8 GB TUF GAMING OC$749.99
CaseCorsair 4000D$84.99
PSUCorsair CX750M 750 W (80 Plus Bronze)$89.99
OSWindows 10 Home 64-bit$108.78
Total Cost$1848.65

We had to choose some different components for our build due to availability. However, we tried to select parts with comparable features to make it as fair as possible.

Building the computer ourselves, presuming we could get all the listed prices, would come in at $404 cheaper. That’s a healthy saving, especially when you consider that our GPU is listed for at least $200 above MSRP. However, MAINGEAR’s lifetime labor and technical support are nice bonuses that may come in handy if you plan to use your PC for a long time.

Couple that with the fact that you might not even be able to find a GPU at all in today’s market, building a PC with MAINGEAR starts to show more appeal. It won’t win out on pure price, but some benefits can tip the scales in the company’s favor.

2. Xidax

Best warranty of any custom PC builder

XIDAX custom PC builder

Xidax is a custom PC builder based in South Jordan, Utah. The company’s perhaps slightly lesser-known than the others on this list, but you may have seen the custom PC they built for Unbox Therapy.

Xidax doesn’t have any ready-to-ship pre-builts. They offer a few different base gaming PCs and workstations, which you can then customize to fit your needs.

Warranty ★★★★☆

Xidax’s lifetime warranty is simply second to none when it comes to custom PC builders. The lifetime warranty for labor isn’t out of the ordinary, as companies like Origin PC offer the same. However, their lifetime parts warranty unheard of amongst custom PC builders.

A lifetime parts warranty is a really compelling reason to go for a Xidax-built PC. However, there are a few important caveats that bring the rating down. Firstly, the lifetime warranty doesn’t apply to AMD GPUs. Secondly, any upgrades performed by a non-Xidax technician will void your warranty.

This means that you’ll have to pack up and ship your PC back to Xidax whenever you want to upgrade any parts if you don’t want to lose your warranty. Your PC also has to be sent back in its original packaging with purchase receipts. Xidax will, of course, provide new packaging at a “nominal” cost.

It’s still an impressive warranty even with these conditions. But it’s essential to be aware of the company’s terms before you jump into building a Xidax PC solely based on their warranty.

Component Choice ★★★☆☆

XIDAX GPU selection

Xidax’s components catalog is relatively limited but with a few redeeming qualities. Firstly, Xidax is the only company on our list offering mid-range Nvidia cards like the GTX 1650 and 1660 Super. Sure, this isn’t the most exciting point, but it’s a blessing for anyone on a tight budget.

We should also mention that Xidax uses some of its own parts in its PCs. You’ll likely end up with Xidax RAM in your build, and you can also get a Xidax monitor to go along with your new PC. We can’t vouch for the quality of their parts, but the lifetime parts warranty is reassuring.

Xidax only offers a custom water-cooling loop option on its highest-end PC, the X-10. As usual, you have the option of soft or hard-line tubing and a few different coolant colors courtesy of Koolance. Unlike the other companies on our list, Xidax offers two reservoir choices and the option for a second reservoir.

Aesthetics ★★★☆☆

Xidax X-2

Xidax X-2. Source: Xidax

Xidax’s PCs all feature tempered glass side panels, although they’re slightly more conservative than some of the competition. We appreciate that they’re less attention-grabbing than most typical “gaming” cases.

Xidax has prominent branding on their cases, either in the form of the company’s stylized “X” logo on the front or the company name printed somewhere on the tempered glass side panel. In some cases, you even get both. We’re not opposed to their logo, but we generally don’t like overly prominent branding.

Value ★★★☆☆

We opted for Xidax’s X-2 and customized a roughly $2000 PC in line with our other builders.

CPUIntel Core i5-11600K
CPU CoolerDEEPCOOL CASTLE 240EX Xidax Edition
MotherboardMSI Z590-A PRO
Memory16 GB Xidax Extreme 3200 MHz
SSD500 GB Xidax M.2 SSD
HDD1 TB Seagate Barracuda
GPUNvidia GeForce RTX 3070
CaseXidax Spectrum Light
PSUSeaSonic FOCUS Gold 650 W (80 Plus Gold)
OSWindows 10 Home 64-bit
Total Cost$2216

This is the closest DIY build we could spec via PCPartPicker:

CPUIntel Core i5-11600K$259.99
CPU CoolerDEEPCOOL CASTLE 240EX$104.99
MotherboardMSI Z590-A PRO$189.99
Memory16 GB Team T-FORCE VULCAN Z 3200 MHz$82.99
SSD500 GB Western Digital Blue$59.99
HDD1 TB Seagate Barracuda$45.95
GPUASUS GeForce RTX 3070 8 GB TUF GAMING OC$749.99
CasePhanteks Eclipse P300A$59.99
PSUSeaSonic FOCUS 650 W (80 Plus Gold)$105.41
OSWindows 10 Home 64-bit$108.78
Total Cost$1768.07

Our DIY system is $448 cheaper than an almost-identical Xidax configuration. That’s a significant saving, but Xidax has one big advantage that may be worth the price difference: that lifetime warranty.

There’s no way you’re going to get a remotely similar warranty with a DIY PC. So, even if you can save by building your own, going with Xidax could make sense for the peace of mind a lifetime warranty offers. As long as you bear all the terms and conditions for the lifetime warranty in mind, you should be set with a Xidax system for the long haul.

3. ORIGIN PC

Best component selection of any custom PC builder

ORIGIN PC Homepage

ORIGIN PC is a Miami, Florida-based company established in 2009, making it one of the newest names in the boutique PC builder marketplace. However, that doesn’t mean that they’re new to the game: the company was founded by ex-Alienware employees who left after the Dell acquisition in 2006.

Like most of the companies on this list, ORIGIN PC focuses on selling customized PCs. They occasionally have some ready-to-ship PCs on their Amazon page, but those seem to be rare.

Warranty ★★★☆☆

ORIGIN PC offers a lifetime warranty for labor and a standard one-year warranty for parts, with free shipping on replacement parts for the first 45 days. As far as custom PC builder warranties go, that’s pretty decent and a step above the basic three-year coverage some other builders offer.

The company offers a few warranty upgrade options, from a one-year free shipping upgrade for $70 to a more substantial three-year parts warranty for $250.

Component Choice ★★★★☆

Origin PC CPU selection

ORIGIN PC offers the largest component selection out of all custom PC builders on our list, but there are two sides to that story. On the positive side, you get a wide range of CPU choices, especially for Intel parts. Depending on your base PC, you’ll be able to choose from a mid-range Intel i5-10600K all the way up to the Core i9-10980XE. They also have a raft of Xeon parts for their workstation computers.

On the flip side, you’re restricted to Corsair products for your system’s RAM, PSU, and cooling. That’s not really a surprise given Corsair’s ownership of the company, and we don’t think it’s a big deal since Corsair makes good products. However, we understand that it can be a negative if you prefer other brands for those components.

Full custom water-cooling is only available in the ORIGIN GENESIS super tower. You have five coolant color choices and three stages of Corsair’s Hydro X water cooling tech to choose from in both white and black. Stage III also comes with the option of hard-line tubing for maximum bling.

Aesthetics ★★★★☆

origin neuron custom PC

ORIGIN Neuron. Source: Origin PC

ORIGIN PC has its own branded cases and, as expected, a raft of Corsair case options. Color aside, Origin’s case designs are surprisingly understated for a gaming-focused brand. The Corsair case options are more our style, but we’d be able to live with the Origin cases even in their signature red.

The company also offers a few aesthetic customization options. If you’re going with an ORIGIN PC case, you can choose between tempered glass and aluminum side panels. The bigger Millennium and Genesis also offer a few motherboard mounting options: standard, inverted, 90-degree standard, and 90-degree inverted.

origin inverted motherboard

An inverted motherboard inside an Origin Millennium. Source: Origin PC

You also have some case customization options like laser etching and HD UV printing, both of which would set you back $100.

Value ★★☆☆☆

We chose to configure an ORIGIN NEURON with their recommended in-house case. Our setup came out to $2432.

CPUIntel Core i5-10600K
CPU CoolerCorsair H60i PRO XT
MotherboardASUS Prime Z590M-PLUS
Memory16 GB Corsair Vengeance 3200 MHz
SSD480 GB Corsair Force MP510
HDD1 TB ORIGIN PC Approved Hard Drive
GPUNvidia GeForce RTX 3070
CaseORIGIN NEURON
PSUCorsair RMx 750 W (80 Plus Gold)
OSWindows 10 Home 64-bit
Total Cost$2432

Our almost-identical PCPartPicker system comes in notably cheaper at “just” $1792:

CPUIntel Core i5-10600K$224.99
CPU CoolerCorsair H60i PRO XT$94.99
MotherboardASUS Prime Z590M-PLUS$174.99
Memory16 GB Corsair Vengeance 3200 MHz$92.99
SSD480 GB Corsair Force MP510$69.98
HDD1 TB Seagate Barracuda$45.95
GPUASUS GeForce RTX 3070 8 GB TUF GAMING OC$749.99
CaseFractal Design Define Mini C TG$89.99
PSUCorsair RMx 750 W (80 Plus Gold)$139.99
OSWindows 10 Home 64-bit$108.78
Total Cost$1792.64

Bear in mind that this is with an inflated GPU price that’s $200 above MSRP. If you’re looking solely at the cost on paper, the self-built PC is a much better deal.

Origin PC does claw back some points with its unique case (provided you like how it looks) and lifetime labor and tech support. We’re not totally convinced a $640 premium is worth it for a custom gaming PC, but your opinion may vary.

4. Puget Systems

Best custom PC builder for professionals

Puget Systems builder

Puget Systems is an Auburn, Washington-based company that’s been building PCs since 2000. The company stands out from many other computer building companies with its exclusive focus on professional workstations and servers with discreet aesthetics.

Puget Systems has a range of base PCs that can then be configured to meet the user’s needs. They build everything from silent miniature Intel-based NUCs to hulking rack units, and you also have the option to build a PC from the ground up.

Warranty ★★★☆☆

Puget Systems offers a one-year parts warranty by default. However, you can opt for an extended two- or three-year parts warranty for an additional $275.50 and $332.79, respectively. Puget does offer a lifetime labor warranty, though, which should appeal to professional users needing peace of mind regarding servicing in the future.

We would have loved to see Puget Systems offer a more extended parts warranty by default, especially given the high-end professional focus of their systems. But it’s still a solid warranty overall.

Component Choice ★★★☆☆

puget systems component choice

Puget Systems has the most limited component choice out of the computer building companies on this list. But that’s not necessarily a negative. Instead, the company’s focus on professional and workstation workloads means that the components offered are the best options for these tasks.

You won’t find anything below an Intel Core i7 or AMD Ryzen 5000-series CPU here, and your GPU choices are limited to Nvidia’s 3000-series and Quadro cards. You won’t have much choice with cooling either, as you’ll be stuck with a Noctua air cooler for most builds.

Some will probably find this limiting, but we like to think of it as a carefully curated approach. Puget Systems is also well known for its component testing, so you can rest assured they only offer components they have confidence in.

Puget Systems doesn’t offer any custom water-cooling solutions for its PCs. It makes sense given their professional audience, as there’s much less that can go wrong with an air-cooled system.

Aesthetics ★★★★☆

puget serenity professional

Puget Serenity Professional. Source: Puget Systems

Puget Systems uses Fractal Design cases for all its PCs except the NUC-based Echo and its rackmount servers. If you’ve read our previous posts, you’ll know that we love the style of Fractal Design’s products. So we’re definitely keen on the aesthetics of Puget’s offerings.

Some users will undoubtedly find the Fractal Design cases quite dull. But Puget’s target is to produce reliable and unobtrusive PCs. To that end, there aren’t many cases more suited to the job.

Value ★★★☆☆

We specced out a Puget Systems Serenity Professional, which is their general-purpose silent computer designed for studios and other work environments.

CPUIntel Core i7-11700K
CPU CoolerNoctua NH-U12AP
MotherboardASUS ROG STRIX Z590-E WiFi
Memory32 GB 3200 MHz
SSD500 GB Samsung 980 Pro
HDD4 TB Western Digital Red
GPUNvidia GeForce RTX 3070
CaseFractal Design Define 7
PSUSuper Flower LEADEX 850 W (80 Plus Platinum)
OSWindows 10 Home 64-bit
FansNoctua case fans
Total Cost$3265.35

Note that Puget Systems upgrades the Fractal Design Define 7’s case fans with quieter Noctua fans. They don’t specify which fans they use, but given the Define 7’s support for 140 mm fans, they’re more than likely to be the Noctua AF-14 PWM.

Here’s our closest equivalent PC on PCPartPicker:

CPUIntel Core i7-11700K$399.99
CPU CoolerNoctua NH-U12AP$109.95
MotherboardASUS ROG STRIX Z590-E$379.99
Memory32 GB G.Skill Trident Z RGB 3200 MHz$199.99
SSD500 GB Samsung 980 Pro$129.99
HDD4 TB Western Digital Red$92.99
GPUASUS GeForce RTX 3070 8 GB TUF GAMING OC$749.99
CaseFractal Design Define 7$169.99
PSUSeaSonic FOCUS Plus 850 W (80 Plus Platinum)$232.00
OSWindows 10 Home 64-bit$139.88
Fans3x Noctua A14 PWM 140 mm$65.85
Total Cost$2670.61

Even with the roughly $200 premium on the GPU, the self-built PC still comes out way cheaper than the Puget Systems build. The Super Flower PSU they use might be a bit better than our SeaSonic unit, but likely not by much. Beyond that, the DIY system should perform identically, so price-wise, the DIY PC wins hands down.

Like with Origin PC, you’re definitely paying for the lifetime labor and tech support if you get a computer built by Puget Systems. How much that matters will depend entirely on the type of user you are. Do you have time to put together a work PC and do your own troubleshooting when things go wrong? If so, it’s probably not worth it.

But if you’re a busy professional reliant on your computer, having access to Puget Systems’ support and technical expertise to fix any issues is likely worth the extra $635. That’s why we’re giving Puget Systems a slightly higher rating than ORIGIN PC here.

The Competition

You might be wondering where some of the other popular custom PC builders are. Let’s quickly discuss our reasons for leaving some of the big names out of this list.

CyberPowerPC is something of a household name amongst computer builders. But anyone who’s been around forums or Reddit will be aware of the company’s abysmal reputation for customer service. A quick look at some of the recent customer reviews on Trustpilot should be enough to explain why we decided to leave them off the list.

iBUYPOWER’s reputation is slightly better, but we opted against including them because of their mediocre default three-year labor warranty. All of the companies we chose for this list manage to offer at least a lifetime labor and service warranty, and iBUYPOWER simply can’t compete.

NZXT’s BLD service looks good on paper, but again, customer reviews are overwhelmingly negative. While we understand that reviews tend to be skewed towards negative experiences, the sheer barrage of negative feedback is cause for concern. We’re also unsure how well the company has addressed the issues brought up by GamersNexus in their video from last year, so we opted against including them here.

As for other builders such as Digital Storm and Falcon Northwest, we simply felt that the companies in this list were slightly more compelling in one way or another. That said, both are well-regarded and worth checking out if our picks aren’t doing it for you.

A Price Worth Paying?

Make no mistake, you’ll almost certainly end up paying more if you get a custom-built PC versus building your own. However, there are several benefits to getting a PC built by one of the best custom PC builders on this list. An obvious perk right now is an easy way to land hard-to-find parts like Nvidia and AMD’s latest GPUs.

But there are also other conveniences. For example, you don’t have to worry about building a PC and making mistakes or dealing with any dead-on-arrival parts. You’ll also have the convenience of exhaustive technical support and a one-stop-shop for warranty issues. There are pros and cons, so remember to take your time and weigh your options carefully. Here’s hoping you get your new rig soon!

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