It’s that time of year yet again, and what an amazing year it’s been for computer enthusiasts. In this episode of the Full Nerd, Gordon Mah Ung, Brad Chacos, Alaina Yee, and Adam Patrick Murray name the best PC hardware of 2017.
These aren’t PCWorld’s formal picks—they’re the opinions of the Full Nerd podcast group alone. We didn’t hold staff-wide meetings or create elaborate Excel spreadsheets full of information about every gizmo reviewed in 2017. Instead, each member of the Full Nerd crew walked into the studio armed with their personal lists of the best hardware in each category, ready to cajole and convince the others to their cause. No one leaves until we’ve named every winner. And in the cases where we couldn’t break a deadlock, we turned to the live audience as the tiebreaker.
The joy of this award show lies in passionate debate, in the group discussion—in the journey. But if you’re interested in the destination alone, here’s a list of Full Nerd’s favorite PC hardware of 2017:
- Best CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 1700 ($280 on Amazon)
- Best GPU: Nvidia Geforce GTX 1080 Ti ($770 on Amazon)
- Best storage: Intel Optane 900p ($389 on Amazon)
- Best case: Fractal Design Meshify C ($90 on Newegg)
- Best PC accessory: Sound BlasterX AE-5 ($150 on Amazon) with the HyperX Cloud Alpha ($100 on Amazon), because PC audio matters!
- Best gaming laptop: Gigabyte Aero 15X ($2,200 on Amazon) for gaming and the Acer Aspire E 15 ($350 on Amazon) for most bang-for-buck.
- Best innovation: More CPU cores for the masses! Seriously, 6-core chips cost $200 and 16-core Threadripper chips sell for $1,000 on Amazon now. Wild.
- Worst trend: Overly greedy loot boxes ruining games. Stupid loot boxes.
You can also watch the Full Nerd episode 36 on YouTube where we provide time stamps to jump to each category (toss us a follow while you’re there!) or listen to it on Soundcloud if you prefer the audio alone.
Speaking of audio, you can subscribe to The Full Nerd in iTunes (please leave a review if you enjoy the show). We’re also on Stitcher, Google Play, or you can point your favorite podcast-savvy RSS reader to: http://feeds.soundcloud.com/users/soundcloud:users:226190044/sounds.rss
Have a PC- or gaming-related question? Email firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll try to answer it in the next episode, and be sure to follow PCWorld on Facebook or YouTube to watch the show live and pick our brains in real time. Our annual predictions episode will be filmed at 1:30 P.M. Eastern on December 19. We’ll gaze into our crystal balls to guess at what 2018 will bring, and reflect back on last year’s predictions—literally eating our words for any that wound up incorrect. Catch up on what we thought would happen in the video below.