NZXT is now offering full gaming PCs, which straddle the line between pre-built and home-made, in a line it's calling BLD Kits. The company is packaging together everything that goes into a full NZXT gaming PC into one box, with full, clear, super damned cute instructions on how to put everything together so you can enjoy the satisfaction of putting your rig together with your own two hands.
Now, there's probably a part of you that's wondering why you'd bother doing that instead of either buying a standard pre-built machine—where the professionals have done all the hard work for you—or going out and picking your own components to totally customise your PC experience.
But in these stock starved times finding every part for your prospective PC is almost impossible, so having someone ready to package everything together—with 100% confidence that those parts will play nicely together—means you get to enjoy the building process with a chunk of the 2021-based hassle removed.
And yes, that includes sending you a new RTX 30-series GPU, too.
Building a gaming PC can be a daunting task for the beginner, despite the fact that it's become more and more straightforward over the years. But it's also hugely rewarding, and you learn a hell of a lot doing so. And that means, when it comes to upgrading down the line, you're not so scared about pulling the side panel off, and plucking out the SSD.
NZXT is offering two different BLD Kits, the Starter Pro and the Streaming Plus. Both of these are also available as fully built systems if you prefer, though you do actually save $200 opting for the home-build version of the more expensive Streaming Plus. Sadly it looks like the Starter Pro is the same cost no matter which one you choose, though the pre-built option is currently out of stock. Which kinda answers the question for you anyways.
The difference between the Starter and Streaming BLD Kits is the choice of motherboard and CPU—the Starter uses an Intel Core i5 11400F CPU and ASRock B560 board, while the Streaming option features the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X CPU and an MSI B550 board.
The pricier build also comes with liquid cooling for the processor, though it is an all-in-one CPU cooler, so doesn't require an engineering degree to put together.
Otherwise the systems are the same, each coming with the excellent RTX 3060 Ti, likely in whichever flavour NZXT is able to get hold of at the time. No matter which processor and motherboard pairing you go for the Nvidia GPU provides for a quality gaming experience at both 1080p and 1440p. The AMD CPU is a slightly better option for general processing duties, hence its appearance in the Streaming Plus option, but the six-core, 12-thread Core i5 11400F is no budget slouch itself.
The final interesting piece of the puzzle is the warranty backup NZXT is offering. With a BLD Kit you get a full two year warranty on all the parts to give you full peace of mind.
Given the situation we find ourselves in at the moment, I like the idea of these BLD Kits. I love putting gaming PCs together, and would absolutely champion that as a way to go for anyone, but the fact is that finding all the parts individually is now waaaaay harder than actually building the system. With NZXT doing the heavy lifting on that side for you, and you just receiving a single package of gaming PC goodies to work on, it's almost the best you can hope for right now.
The big issue with this sort of thing is just how in-depth the instructions will actually be in the end. And they're actually impressively clear and pretty damned cute, as you can see from the instructions PDF (obviously .pdf warning) you can download right now. It does stop at the final stage of powering on the system, including some simple troubleshooting tips, so getting Windows installed is down to you.
Or us, if you want to install Windows 11, of course.
The fact you also get a bit of a discount on at least one of the options is great, too, and as it should be. I mean, if you're going to be the one to get busy with a screwdriver then you ought to get a little more out of it than just the satisfaction of a job well done.
PC Gamer Newsletter
Sign up to get the best content of the week, and great gaming deals, as picked by the editors.
Dave has been gaming since the days of Zaxxon and Lady Bug on the Colecovision, and code books for the Commodore Vic 20 (Death Race 2000!). He built his first gaming PC at the tender age of 16, and finally finished bug-fixing the Cyrix-based system around a year later. When he dropped it out of the window. He first started writing for Official PlayStation Magazine and Xbox World many decades ago, then moved onto PC Format full-time, then PC Gamer, TechRadar, and T3 among others. Now he's back, writing about the nightmarish graphics card market, CPUs with more cores than sense, gaming laptops hotter than the sun, and SSDs more capacious than a Cybertruck.