Black Friday 2017: Good VR Ready PC Deals

by Jamie Feltham • November 23rd, 2017

Sure, there are some big savings on virtually all PC-based VR headsets this Black Friday, but that’s not where the real cost of getting into VR lies, is it? It’s the high-powered PCs required to run the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and Windows VR headsets that really threaten your wallet.

So we’ve rounded up some of the best deals out there for those looking to get into VR from scratch (or just hunting for an upgrade) this sale season. This is going to include bundles as well as standalone rigs and laptops, so there should be something for everyone. Of course, Black Friday itself isn’t actually upon us yet, so expect to see plenty more deals in the coming days.

If you’ve come here looking for a little inspiration, though, we’re going to list the recommended specifications for each of the three major VR platforms below so you can check out other bundles knowing what you’re getting into.

Oculus Rift Recommended Specs:

  • Graphics card NVIDIA GTX 1060 / AMD Radeon RX 480 or greater (Alternative graphics card NVIDIA GTX 970 / AMD Radeon R9 290 or greater)
  • CPU Intel i5-4590 equivalent or greater
  • 8 GB+ RAM
  • Compatible HDMI 1.3 video output
  • 3x USB 3.0 ports, plus 1x USB 2.0 port
  • Windows 7 SP1 64 bit or newer

HTC Vive Recommended Specs:

  • NVIDIA GTX 1060 / AMD Radeon RX 480 equivalent or greater
  • Intel i5-4590 or AMD FX 8350 equivalent or greater
  • 4GB+ RAM
  • Compatible HDMI 1.3 video output
  • 2x USB 3.0 ports
  • Windows 7 SP1 or newer

Windows Mixed Reality Recommended Specs (60 FPS):

  • Intel HD Graphics 620 equivalent or greater
  • Intel i7200U equivalent or greater
  • 8GB+ RAM
  • Compatible HDMI 1.3 video output
  • 1x USB 3.0 port
  • Windows 10 Fall Creators Update

Windows Mixed Reality Ultra Recommended Specs (90 FPS):

  • NVIDIA GTX 1050/AMD RX 560 equivalent or greater
  • Intel i5-4590 or AMD FX 8350 equivalent or greater
  • 8GB+ RAM
  • Compatible HDMI 1.3 video output
  • 1x USB 3.0 port
  • Windows 10 Fall Creators Update

All-In For Under $800

Acer Aspire Nitro 5 AN515-51-5594 Gaming Laptop + Acer Windows Mixed Reality Headset with Motion Controllers
Price: $798 ($400 off)

Acer’s Windows-based VR headset might not be up to the same standards as the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive but this is still one of the cheapest prices we’ve ever seen for going all-in on PC-based VR. With an Intel Core i5-7300HQ processor, 8GM RAM and GTX 1050 graphics, this will handle everything on Windows’ own store at 90fps, though if you’re looking to dive into SteamVR you might want to consider something with a bit more firepower.

1080 For $1300

AMD ET 6960
Price: $1299.99

When it comes to future-proofing your VR PC (and getting the best out of it right now), it’s best to go top of the range with your graphics card. The AMD ET offers the Nvidia GTX 1080 graphics card, 16GB RAM, and an AMD Ryzen 7 1700X CPU. While new GTX cards may not be far off right now, this is as good as it gets outside of the beastly Titan X.

Ultra Mixed Reality

Dell Inspiron 15 7577 i7577-5258BLK-PUS Laptop + Dell Windows Mixed Reality Headset with Motion Controllers
Price: $1,148 ($400 off)

The Microsoft Store has a bunch of PC bundle deals with its new VR headsets ready to ship, but we’re most taken by this Inspiron bundle. With an Intel Core i5-7300HQ processor, GTX 1060 graphics and 8GB RAM it fits comfortably into the Ultra range of mixed reality PCs, meaning it’ll run experiences from the Windows Store at 90fps. With the Dell headset bundled in, this is all you need to get into VR.

Shaving Price And Weight

GIGABYTE Aero 14Kv7-BK4
Price: $1449 ($100 off)

Notebooks might not offer the absolute best VR performance, but if you’re on the go a lot and have space for a Rift or Vive then you might want to consider Gigabyte’s slender selection, with GTX 1050 TI graphics, an Intel i7 7700HQ processor, and 16GB RAM. It’s only $100 off but, for laptops this small that can run VR, that’s pretty good.

Beastly Performance For A Slightly Lower Price

Alienware Area-51
Price: $4299.99 ($750 off)

If you’re only in the market for the absolute best experience, have the money to spend on it, but still wouldn’t mind saving a good $750, then Alienware’s Area-51 rig might be the place to go. With 32GB RAM, 1080 graphics and Intel’s i9 7980XE you won’t need to worry about what your PC can and can’t run for some time yet. You can even upgrade to the 1080Ti for an extra $200, meaning you’ll still save a fair bundle.

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  • Dan Vfx

    last alienware is a waste of money, rather build a custom PC for half the price and same performance…

    • Studley L’amore

      I agree. I’d recommend anyone to research a little and build your own PC. Like the man said “half the price and same performance” …and you’ll learn stuff.

      • gothicvillas

        Same goes for the microwaves and bread toasters. I built my own for half a price.

    • Evgeni Zharsky

      I’m so tired of this argument, building your own pc doesn’t always save any money, let alone HALF. I know because I’ve recently priced out parts for a build and a comparable pre-built PC from Skytech. And the build it yourself would have cost me more money and more hassle.

      • Robbie Zeigler

        The only people tired of that argument are those who lack the skills to do their own build or are simply too lazy…. Been in the business of building custom gaming rigs for people since 2005 and I can guarantee whatever you throw my way with a prebuilt I can build one that will trounce it for less money.

        • RFC_VR

          yes, I’ve been building gaming PC since the early days of first person shooters, and its always best to build your own (which can save money)

          I’d strongly recommend building a suitable PC for your needs, with aftermarket components to ensure stability, performance and reliability. It also ensures you understand computer maintenance and hardware replacement which in itself will save a lot of money.

          Worked on too many pre-built PC with compromised components, saving $$ on cheap generic mobo (usually manufactured by Foxconn) and cheap PSU, leading to trouble down the road…

    • Phil_NYC

      Please direct to me where I can buy the latest NVIDIA graphics card, Intel core processor, motherboard, cooling system, ram, and storage that will be under $2k all in. Last i checked companies like cyberpower and alien are pretty competitive to DIY.

  • Michael Zhang

    I’m planning to build a VR ready PC. I’m looking through the info on Logical Increments right now. Any other websites you all would recommend?

    • Xron

      Depends on what you would like to get…
      If I would you, I would check reddit amd and reddit nvidia blogs. They share new info about new prices and builds.
      As for me, I’m waiting for next gen. hmds and video cards that might be more optimazed for vr. They might come out 2018 1 or 2 quarter with gddr6.

    • Candy Cab

      PC Part Picker has a lot of good info on different builds, their performance, prices etc.

  • Zpfunk

    Vive only requires 1 usb 3.0, doesnt even have to be 3.0 actually. But its 1 not 2.