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Now is the best time to build that new gaming PC (or any PC for that matter)

2021 was a bad time for people who wanted to buy or build their own computer to play PC games. The pandemic had choked off global supply chains, while cryptocurrency speculators bought PC hardware to mine their favorite cryptos. The massive demand and limited supply drove prices to all-time highs.

But this dark period did end. By mid-2022, after restrictions were lifted and cryptocurrencies like Ethereum lost value, prices dropped.

Now is the best time to spend on a gaming PC. For those open to it, the second-hand market offers even more value. Even if you focus on brand-new items, you’re still getting more performance for each peso spent.

My own experience building my own gaming PC is a great example:

  • The Nvidia RTX 3090 (a high-end graphics card) sold for 88,000 PHP on launch. At the end of 2021, some 3090s retailed close to 200,000 PHP! Last December, I bought a used 3090 from a friend for 43,000 PHP–much less than what I spent on a less powerful GPU during the pandemic.
  • In April 2021 I bought a 2TB SSD (the ADATA XPG SX2800 Pro) for 12,699 PHP from Lazada. Now you can buy the same product from Shopee for only 5,350 PHP.
  • That pair of 8GB Crucial Ballistix RAM sticks I bought last November 2021 for 5,979 PHP? They’re now selling for 3,295.00 PHP.

A few things to keep in mind: Import taxes and limited supply means the local PC hardware market still has higher prices compared to the US and even our neighboring countries. Building your own gaming PC remains a research-heavy activity. It’s still about finding the perfect balance between your budget, what’s available to buy, and hardware compatibility.

Yet there are still options. Amazon offers free shipping to the Philippines for some items, and there are plenty of online guides to help you choose the right hardware. There’s also nothing wrong with bugging your super-geeky friends for advice too. (While building my PC, I bugged my friend who sold me the 3090. Hi Roman!)

Back in 2021 I really wanted a good gaming PC. So I paid through the nose for one. If you’re on the market for a gaming PC now, you won’t make the same mistake I did.