Getting one of the best Black Friday deals in November can give your gaming PC a huge performance boost. It's the best time of the year to upgrade your computer and snag a handful of games and other tech, because almost all online retailers have some kind of Black Friday or Cyber Monday sale. If you've been waiting for a big ticket item, like one of the best graphics cards or a fresh monitor, there are loads of chances to save money. Alternatively, maybe you've assigned a pot of cash to your gaming PC and you just want to see what you can get: at the very least you'll be able to pick up extra storage, a new mouse or keyboard, and a handful of the best PC games for pleasingly lower prices.
The best Black Friday deals will also feature a bunch of pre-built PCs and laptops, for those looking to take first steps into PC gaming, or get a whole new set-up. We often see bigger price cuts on laptops and ready-built computers over Black Friday and Cyber Monday as retailers look to clear stock ahead of next-year's models. 2019 should be an excellent time to buy a new system as we've seen plenty of new component releases, especially in GPUs and CPUs, and these have filtered quickly into laptops and PCs throughout the year. So, you should be able to save money on some very new components, and future-proof yourself for a few years.
In terms of games and other peripherals, you'll find headsets, keyboards, mice, and some of 2019's early gaming hits (think Resident Evil 2, Division 2 and maybe even Sekiro) headlining the best Black Friday deals. We'll have the top picks of everything right here in this article, and we'll update it as each deal comes in throughout November. For now, here's all you need to know about Black Friday, and how to save yourself some money on PC gaming.
Black Friday 2019 date - when is it?
Actual Black Friday 2019 is Friday, November 29. While the deals will likely start well before this date—we estimate you'll see big savings from Monday November 18 onwards—most retailers save the absolute best for the Friday itself. This makes Black Friday shopping quite a tactical thing: do you snap up the thing you need early, if the price is right? Or do you risk waiting for the Friday itself to maybe save a little more money, but also risk someone like NewEgg or Amazon running out of stock?
PC gamers are in quite a fortunate position here, as there's a second shopping bonanza called Cyber Monday, which always happens on the Monday directly following Black Friday. For 2019, that means Monday December 2. In days past, Cyber Monday was traditionally the big day for tech and PC sales, with Black Friday more about clothes, TVs, and everything else. While Cyber Monday is increasingly becoming 'just an extension of the whole Black Friday thing', it still carries weight with component and peripheral manufacturers, so you do find that PC deals in particular are still good on Cyber Monday. While the lines between the two events are almost fully blurred now, you will get a second chance on some PC tech to save even more cash on Cyber Monday. The clue is in the name.
Best Black Friday deals - what can we expect?
So, what are you likely to actually save money on during 2019's Black Friday deals events? Well, the answer really is anything and everything, so we've decided to break it down into the top five items we expect to see discounted this year, based on market trends that we've noticed throughout the rest of the year. PC Gamer is lucky enough to have a team dedicated to hardware, deals, and buying guides, so this is our day-to-day role on the site, which means we can predict the best offers over Black Friday with decent accuracy. OK, perhaps we'll need a new trumpet because we're blowing our current one a bit too hard...
No, it doesn't take a genius to work this one out, but SSDs have tumbled in price over the past couple of years, with more and more storage becoming increasingly affordable. While HDDs still offer superb value for 2-6TB options, the rise of SSDs is seemingly unstoppable. Even NVMe drives, once the reserve of purists, are within the reach of casual home gamers. You'll always need more storage, and you'll find SSDs cheaper during Black Friday, so we'd strongly advise you set aside about $100-150 to bag a terrific new drive.
Let's take a good, baseline example. The 1TB Samsung 860 EVO SSD, which we rate as the best SSD for gaming (taking performance vs price into account), is currently $140 via Amazon and NewEgg. That's pretty good. During Black Friday 2018, it dropped to $127, having spent the previous three months sat around $150. While the price of storage hasn't dropped as drastically in 2019 as it did in 2018, you'll still see a similar drop over Black Friday. That means you'll probably see the 1TB drive for between $100 and $110 during Black Friday, which is a mighty deal. Samsung will want to continue paving the way for its 970 series of SSDs, and this will be the year it meaningfully clears stock of the 860. We have a specialist guide to Black Friday SSD deals if you need it.
2. IPS gaming monitors
While we'll likely see a significant reduction across all gaming monitors during Black Friday, this year should see a decent dip for IPS panels. TN screens are always reduced in price, but IPS displays have seen fewer savings... until now. That's great news for you, because whereas premium features like 4K and HDR remain the reserve of more high-end gaming PC set-ups (because only the most powerful can consistently juggle 4K and that baseline of 120 fps we demand for triple-A games), IPS panels run the full range, from premium to budget, and they usually represent a decent step-up in visuals that isn't dependent on a new, beefy GPU. They are very much the new 'gaming standard' for PCs and you don't have to be Scrooge McDuck to buy one.
Like regular 4K TVs, the tech and panels that fit into IPS monitors is getting both more affordable, and more commonly adopted. This means they're getting cheaper, and this means you'll see bigger savings on them during Black Friday. One great example is the difference between the Acer Predator X27 and XB273K. These are two panels with near-identical features and performance, but a near 40-50% difference in price, with the latter (and newer) model selling for just over $1000. That's the high end of the gaming monitor range, sure, but a good illustration of how the tech is getting cheaper, more widespread, and more ripe for bigger savings. Here's our look at the Black Friday monitor deals.
3. Older 20-series graphics cards
We've already started to see Nvidia reducing the price of GPUs that are less than a year old. The original 2060, 2070, and 2080s have been replaced by 'Super' variants, and while the newer cards are undoubtedly stronger performers and offer better overall value... not all of us can afford a brand new 2080 Super. Thankfully, Black Friday will see retailers very eagerly selling off stock of older 20-series cards at delightfully low prices. This could also have a knock-on effect for pre-builts and some laptops with these GPUs in them too.
To use a live example: we saw the Gigabyte GeForce 2080 Gaming OC card drop to $699 during June following the full reveal of the Supers, and that card started 2019 over $100 more. It has rallied a little now, but we'll see another significant dip during Black Friday, likely dropping the card below $600. For something that's still essentially at the top of the range, that's a damn good price. And all because it isn't quite the latest model, despite being just over a year old (by November). We have a guide for all Black Friday graphics card prices.
More 2019 guides
4. Webcams and microphones
The rise and rise of streaming, and getting 'publicly angry about video games on the internet', has not escaped the attention of webcam and mic manufacturers. As such, recording set-ups that bring 1080p video and near-studio-grade audio are as affordable as ever. If you're serious about getting your face onto YouTube, for example, the barrier for entry really has never been lower. And that goes doubly-so for retail events like Black Friday.
During the recent Amazon Prime Day event, we saw one of our top webcams get reduced by 60%, which was one of the most significant savings of the entire sales event. And people snapped them up, along with a decent deal on the excellent Blue Yeti mic. That same pattern will undoubtedly be repeated in November, so if you need either a mic or a webcam, just hang on and save wads of cash.
Yes, we see it every year. Retailers know that you're waiting to spend bigger during Black Friday, and few purchases get more significant than a brand-new gaming laptop. If you're willing to put in a decent budget, you can get loads of tech for your money on Black Friday, and we'd actually recommend setting your budget instead of actually looking for a specific spec of laptop you want to buy.
When it comes to laptops, the capacity for upgrades and improvements is, naturally, way smaller than desktop PCs. So you need to get as much as you can afford, right from the off. With Black Friday, it's your chance to get a better laptop than you thought you could actually afford, so instead of settling for something with a 2060 card and a 500GB SSD, you should be able to get a 2070 laptop, with dual-storage, and likely a better CPU. The savings will drop these superior machines into your price-range, and there will always be price-drops for laptops, as the tech inside them advances so quickly. For more, check our Black Friday gaming laptop guide.
6. Gaming chairs
While it's possible to find discounts on gaming chairs all year round, the manufacturers tend to slash prices further on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The reason is that gaming chairs are a luxury, and therefore more likely to sell during a sales event. You don't need a gaming chair, but you probably want one to make your set-up perfect. Watch out of sites offering 'additional discount' codes around Black Friday. Last year we saw Secretlab, who make the Omega (our fav chair), knock an additional percentage off at checkout when anyone entered a special code. It's likely to happen again this year, so we'll be sure to track down that code and tell you what it is. We'll even have a special Black Friday gaming chair article to pick out all the butt-related deals for you.
7. All kinds of gaming headsets
As certain as rain on your vacation and traffic on your commute, Black Friday 2019 will play host to a wealth of discounts on gaming headsets. Anyone actually looking for a new pair of cans is in the best possible position, because not only do you see savings on older models but you also see fairly substantial savings on the newer ones too. Looking for a Corsair Virtuoso or a Steelseries Arctis 1? They will likely be on sale, along with all the classics like the Razer Kraken series and the HyperX Cloud Alpha. Sure, the discounts will be steeper on older models, but you'll save cash no matter what you buy. Our Black Friday gaming headset guide will round up the best deals in one place for you.
Expired Black Friday deals from 2018
Sometimes, to work out the best Black Friday deals for now, you need to look backwards. We've rounded up the top offers from 2018 to show you the kind of stuff you might expect in 2019. Take note of the savings, rather than the prices, as many of these items will likely have dropped in price during the last 12 months anyway.
Samsung 1TB 860 EVO SATA III M.2 SSD | $127.99 ($70.00 off)
The 2.5-inch version of the 1TB 860 Evo has been $128 all weekend, but now the M.2 model has dropped to the same price. Keep in mind this is a SATA drive in an M.2 form factor—it's not as fast as an NVMe drive.
Buy at B&H Gigabyte Radeon RX 570 4GB | $129.99 (save $70)
This is the lowest price we've seen on an RX 570, and it also comes with two free games. There's a $20 MIR, and this is the 4GB model, but it will still run circles around a GTX 1050 Ti and at a lower price.
Buy at Newegg LG 29WK600-P | 29-inch | 2560x1080 | IPS | 75Hz | FreeSync |£219 (save £53)
Nice all-round package for the price. IPS panel, small uptick in refresh to 75Hz, super-wide 2560x1080 res and FreeSync.
Buy from Ebuyer. CyberPowerPC | Core i7-8700 | RTX 2070 | $1,299.99 (save $200)
This is an excellent gaming PC, with a powerful CPU and graphics card, plus 16GB RAM and a 2TB HDD + 16GB Optane module. It comes with Battlefield V as well.
Buy at Newegg The Secretlab Omega gaming chair is still £279 (save £120)
This is our favorite gaming chair, and comes highly recommended for comfort, support, and just looking lovely. Snap it up from Secret Lab's website. Buy it iBuyPower Trace 9220 | Intel i7-8700K | $1,549 ($250 off)
This overclockable desktop PC comes stocked with an Intel Core i7-8700K, RTX 2070, Z370 motherboard, and 16GB RAM.
Buy at Amazon . Dell Inspiron Desktop | Ryzen 5 1400 | RX 570 4GB | $479.93 ($320 off)
This mid-range gaming PC has an AMD Ryzen 5 1400 CPU, a Radeon RX 470 graphics card, a 1TB hard drive, and 8GB RAM.
Buy at Office Depot HP Pavilion | 15.6" | i5-8300H | GTX 1050 Ti | $599 (save $200)
Like the Acer Nitro 5 above, this is a great price for a GTX 1050 Ti laptop. It's unclear if this deal is in-store only or also available online, but it's a great deal, so we're leaving it here. Buy at Walmart . ASRock Z370M-ITX/ac | $89.99 (save $45)
If you're looking to build an ultra compact ITX system with a high-end Intel CPU, ASRock makes a great little board. It's not quite as full-featured as some of the other options, but at $90 after the $20 MIR, it's hard not to love this little guy. Buy at Newegg . Intel Core i7-8700K | 6 Cores | 12 Threads | $339.99 ($30 off)
This eight-generation Core i7 processor is $30 off the usual price right now at both Amazon and Newegg. 4.9-5.0GHz overclocks are common, with the right cooler.
Buy at Newegg Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum | 12,000 DPI | $34.99 (Save $45)
Logitech's most popular gaming mouse, with removable weights, a reliably great sensor and the best metal scroll wheel in the business. It's a heavy palm grip mouse, and more comfortable than its angular design might look. It's on Best Buy for $34.99 . Logitech C922x Pro Stream | $70 (save $30)
While we'd still recommend the C920, the 922x has a background replacement feature that can be useful for streamers, and at half-off this is a fine deal. Buy it on Amazon . Cooler Master MA410P 120mm CPU Cooler | $24.99 (save $25)
If you need a smaller CPU cooler with RGB lighting, this might be for you. The sale price is $34.99, but it drops another $10 with a mail-in rebate.
Buy at Newegg
When you're faced with such a mass of deals during Black Friday, it's easy to get lost. This article will serve as your best guide to all the offers once they're live, so it's a good idea to bookmark it and keep checking back to see what has been added. PC Gamer is committed to helping you save money on PC gaming because the better your rig is, the more you enjoy your hobby, and the (hopefully) more you read PC Gamer. So, if we can save you some money on a new GPU, everyone wins. Here are some of the things we'll be doing to keep this article up to date...
1. Check the price-checkers
Every major retailer will shout as loud as possible about the savings you're making on their Black Friday deals. So, finding them isn't a problem. Checking whether or not they're worth it is more of a skill. We use sites like Camel to keep an eye on the price history of items, so see whether or not a saving is good, or whether the item's price was just inflated the month before Black Friday, only to be dropped again on the day to make it seem like a good deal.
2. Keep an eye on our guides
While 'we would say that', it's worth noting that PC Gamer has market-leading software on all our buying guides, and this allows us to track prices on all products across all major retailers quicker and more efficiently than us fleshy human beings can ever manage. So, if you've chosen a gaming keyboard, for example, via our guide then just check back and look at the lowest price being shown during Black Friday. It'll tell you what the price is, how much you're saving, and where it's available.
3. Set a budget, not a product
The real winners on Black Friday are people who spend the same money as they might at any other time of year, but get a better thing. Say you have $500 to spend on a gaming monitor... you'll get a bigger, faster, shinier monitor for your $500 in November than you will in August. It's a simple, effective tool for getting better value, rather than actually saving cash.
4. Look out for codes
Some retailers, like NewEgg, offer codes and additional rebates on their sale items, and a surprising number of people miss them. When you're shopping for components during Black Friday, keep an eye out for extra codes and for rebate cards. In some cases, things like GPUs and CPUs come with free games and software too, so you're going to get even more value from these.
5. Sign up early
Many retailers, like Amazon, offer prices exclusively for members. In Amazon's case, it's Prime, but other retailers have free membership schemes that give you an edge when shopping for deals. You'll sometimes get free delivery too. And you're often given a head-start on some savings, or the ability to checkout fast. If you're looking for a hugely popular item, which is likely to sell out, you need to make sure you're all signed into a site and ready with an account, because you don't want to be doing that stuff while you're desperately trying to lock down a deal. Sign up to the big retailers now, so you're ready during Black Friday.
Are the Black Friday deals only for the US?
While Black Friday was originally a US-only event, the deals-season has spread throughout the rest of the world. Usually tied in to coincide with Thanksgiving, a very American holiday, the rest of the world sees it as an excellent opportunity to bump up profits ahead of Christmas and the New Year. So, short answer: no, it isn't US-only. If you're based in the UK, Europe, Australia or anywhere that PC gaming is big, you'll likely be able to take advantage of local Black Friday deals. And yes, we'll have specific offers within this article for those regions.
In fact, Black Friday has become a huge event in the UK. While some prefer to put their own spin on it, like 'Black Tag' or 'November Sales', it's exactly the same thing and brings similar types of deals. Cyber Monday remains more a US event, but in Europe and the UK the Black Friday sales just tend to continue up until Christmas.
Black Friday deals - our promise to you
Sometimes, it's easy to forget that PC Gamer is a team of people, writing for a broad audience of readers all over the world. We're part of the PC gaming community, just like you, and we love our hobby with the same passion as you. So, when we're searching through the Black Friday deals, we always keep that simple fact in our minds. We want to save you money so you can continue to enjoy your gaming PC, so you keep coming back to PC Gamer, and we can continue to write for you. Everyone wins.
So, we will only recommend deals that are actually worth looking at. Sure, some products and offers are never going to be for you, but they might be perfect for someone else who is on a different budget or has different PC needs. Crucially, every deal has to represent excellent value for money and be something we would be happy to spend our money on too. In fact, during Black Friday, that's often what happens: we buy stuff too.
We don't take sides either. Intel, AMD, Nvidia, Razer, Corsair, Steelseries, MSI etc: we're only interested in picking out the best stuff, and the most competitive prices, that are right for your builds.