Whether you enjoy playing on a PC or a video game console, having the right surrounding environment can make all the difference to your gaming experience. Here at Neo Direct, we’ve set up the ultimate guide that will provide you with essential tips and tricks on how to create an optimal gaming hideaway.
PC Gaming Setup
A PC gaming setup, which is often described by gamers as a ‘battle station’ generally comprises a gaming chair, a gaming desk, a keyboard, and a mouse, as well as one or more monitors. Once you have these essential items in place, you can start to accessorise and personalise your setup, but first, we are going to tackle how to choose these must-have components.
What is a gaming chair?
A gaming chair is a chair specially designed for the comfort of video game players and will allow you to sit with a supported posture. While a gaming chair, unfortunately, won’t help you win games, it will help with your spine health. Nevertheless, a healthier spine and long-lasting comfort can provide you with the components you need for a successful game.
PC Gaming Chair
We imagine you’re going to be spending a large amount of time sitting in your gaming chair, which is why it’s really important you choose a chair that is well-suited to your needs. Investing in a good-quality gaming chair will not only improve your overall comfort, but it will also improve the quality of your play and elevate the overall aesthetics of the room.
While PC gaming chairs may appear similar in appearance to your everyday office chair, they provide more in terms of cushioning and back support. With adjustable armrests and even massage functions, they offer that little more relief for your back – meaning you can game for longer.
When choosing the right gaming chair for you, there are three main important elements to consider; ergonomics, material and size. We would highly recommend choosing a chair with lumbar support or full back support, as this will minimise body or back pain after gaming for extended periods of time. In terms of material, while faux leather, leather and vinyl are easy to wipe clean, they aren’t breathable fabrics. That’s why mesh inserts make a great addition to our mesh racing chairs, here at Neo Direct. Finally, you need to choose a gaming chair to suit your size, whether this is an adult, teen or child.
PC Gaming Desk
Choosing your gaming desk requires a little less thought than your gaming chair, but is important nonetheless. We recommend gearing your desk to suit your chair, rather than the other way round, so it can suit the size of the gaming chair, as well as meeting the requirements of the room. Choose a desk with a broad, flat surface that can easily and comfortably accommodate your monitor and screens. Some gamers like to equip their desk with cup holders, in order to reduce the chance of disastrous spills.
If you have a lot of space along one wall, you will probably opt for a rectangular gaming desk, while if you’re tight on space and need to fit your gaming desk in a corner, you’ll need an L-shaped gaming desk to provide that extra surface area. It may go without saying, but ensure that the desk is tall enough to fit your legs beneath before purchase.
PC Gaming Monitors
A smooth-running game requires a comfortably placed monitor, and it’s crucial your gaming setup minimises neck strain as much as possible. We recommend elevating your monitor slightly above eye level, which you can do by fixing your monitor to a monitor mount (these attach to your wall or sit firmly on your desk).
What to look for in a gaming monitor
One of the most important features you’ll hear when it comes to choosing a gaming monitor is the refresh rate. Even though you’ll find milliseconds between them, it makes a big difference. The refresh rate is the number of times the monitor refreshes the image on the screen. As you can imagine, this makes your game feel and look more responsive.
Most monitors will support either a 60hz, 120hz, 144hz or 240hz refresh rate. While some gamers believe it’s worth investing, some also believe it’s more about human response times.
When it comes to screen size, some make the mistake of thinking a large screen is always better. While this is mainly true when it comes to television screens, when you’re gaming so close to the screen, the size becomes irrelevant. As long as it fits on your desk, most people find that sizes ranging from 24” to 27” are best for gaming.
- Response Time – No more than 3ms!
- G-Sync or FreeSync – A nice but not essential option, and possibly very helpful!
- HDR and deep color gamut – An optional choice – HDR isn’t always widely supported.
- IPS – Very optional, might come at the expense of one of the others.
What is the best router for gaming?
The best gaming routers ensure that you won’t suffer lag spikes during the most crucial moments, as well as prioritise network traffic for your games, thanks to a feature called Quality of Service (QoS). This feature helps ensure uninterrupted gaming sessions, despite other users of your network trying to download their own games or stream videos. They will come equipped with features like Gigabit Ethernet ports, multiple antennae, and the reigning WiFi standard. Here are some of our favourites for gaming:
- TP-Link Archer C5400 v2
- Asus RT-AC86U
- TP-Link Archer C5400X
- Netgear Nighthawk Pro Gaming XR500
- Asus RT-AC5300
- Zyxel Armor Z2 AC2600
- Asus RT-AC88U
- D-link DIR-885L/R
PC Gaming Accessories
If you’re wanting to improve the sound quality in your gaming room, you can set up a set of speakers. You can mount them on the desktop or floor using speaker stands, which is also a great way to minimise desk clutter. If you find you’ve got a lot of loose cables, you can keep this under control by using cable management solutions that will improve the overall appearance of the room.
If you spend hours at a time gaming then hydration and nutrition are essential. A mini-fridge that can hold cold water and snacks could be a great option here. If you really want to keep your cool you could try one of our electric slush drinks and smoothie machines!
Console Gaming Setup
Whether you play PlayStation, Nintendo Switch or Xbox, your console gaming setup requires a few essentials. While many PC gamers prefer playing close to eye level with their monitor or monitors, most console gaming setups include a floor gaming chair paired with an elevated TV.
Console gaming chairs are available in two styles: rocker and floor.
Rocker chairs are L shaped sturdy chairs that rock freely front to back and can be reclined at a gamers’ convenience. Floor chairs are often large, soft cushions or bean bags. Floor chairs provide more comfort, while rocker chairs provide more structure.
Just like choosing a PC gaming chair, it’s important to keep in mind space, material and size when choosing a console gaming chair.
Most console gaming setups include an entertainment center and a TV stand or TV mount that elevates the TV above eye level. We would recommend a TV stand that includes ample storage space for multiple consoles, controllers, chargers, headsets, and other accessories.
What headphones should I buy for gaming?
The best gaming headsets are an essential component of any game set up, as they bring the sound in games, movies and music to life. Poor audio is the easiest way to ruin any gaming experience and a loud surround sound could disturb other people in your household.
You need headphones that don’t just deliver superb sound quality, but bring depth to the sound with excellent sound staging and surround sound. Some headphones even offer virtual surround sound as part of their feature set. If you’re looking for aesthetically pleasing gaming headsets, you’ll find ones with impressive features such as RGB lighting. Comfort also plays a crucial part, so make sure you try before you buy, as they need to see you through those long gaming sessions after all. Here are some we would recommend:
- HyperX Cloud Revolver S
- SteelSeries Arctis Pro
- Astro A50 Wireless
- Beyerdynamic Custom Game
Game room ideas
Black out blinds
Blackout blinds or curtains minimise glare on your screen from the natural sunlight.
Complete your games room with some futuristic LED strip lights, which you can place along your ceiling, under the rim of your desk or shelving units. You’ll even find some advanced LED lights that allow you to change the strip colour and brightness.
You can also find quirky novelty neon signs to hang on the way, giving the room a more personal edge.
Just like any room in the house, floating shelves make a great addition for placing your ornaments or collectables.
Graphic prints and posters
Personalise your games room by adorning your walls with your favourite graphic prints or posters. Whatever you love to game, whatever you like to game on, we hope we’ve supplied you with some ideas to get you started creating the ultimate place to play. Be sure to check our full range of gaming chairs here at Neo Direct for some inspiration.