I’ll be honest with you, 12 months ago I thought “I’ll buy an RTX 3000 series card when they come out, it seems like a great time to swap out my Titan Xp” and, if you’re a PC gamer like me you know the rest. A year on an reliable stock of almost all RTX 3000 series cards is impossible to track down.
Then our friends at PC Gamer casually dropped a link to this CCL Computers machine that features not only an RTX 3070 but a reasonable spec in general. The best bit is the price, which at just £1,199.99 strikes me as an absolute bargain.
Obviously the “build it yourself” crowd will be yelling at me, and honestly I’m all in on self-build computers. And indeed, it’s sort of tempting to move the best bits off this machine and into perhaps a different case, with some upgraded components – more on that later. But when I look at it, the Horizon 5 actually looks kind of great. I’d even tolerate the side window, something I’m absolutely opposed to in PC builds.
Of course some people prefer something portable, check out our best gaming laptops guide if you need some guidance on that.
Horizon 5 RTX 3070 | Now £1,199.99 at CCL Computers
For just £1,199.99 (two grand to its friends) you can own this perfectly capable gaming PC. With plenty of decent components and loads of power it would make a very high percentage of gamers very happy indeed. If you're miserable about the lack of GPUs, PS5s and Xbox Series X then this is the tonic. Great looking machine, at a reasonable price.
Firstly, right now you could probably pay nearly that price just to get an RTX 3070 on the scalperweb. This machine will easily give you flawless 1080p gaming in AAA titles, and I dare say you could push it to 1440p if you’re an idiot ultrawide gamer like I am. The Ryzen 5 5600X is also a great choice. At 3.7 GHz with a 4.6GHz boost and 6 cores/12 threads, it’s more than capable for most tasks.
Of course, there are some compromises here, but they’re really tiny and shouldn’t deter you at all. Firstly, it’s 16GB of RAM, which you might find some people argue is a bit low. For gaming it should be fine, most games don’t need that much to work well. I suspect that the RAM might not be the absolute fastest, although it does run at 3200MHz in dual channel. You could add more RAM easily, if you need it it’s Kingston Fury so another matched pair won’t be hard to get.
Then there’s a modest 1TB drive for storage. That’s not dreadful, in fact my boot drive is a quarter of that currently, but I opted for a Samsung drive that’s probably far quicker than really makes much difference. Adding in some additional storage will be essential for game libraries, but that won’t be difficult.
Even the motherboard, a B450 Tomahawk Max is great. I’m a massive fan of MSI, and my last AMD machine was built on one of its boards, which has been flawless. It’s not a PCI-e Gen 4 board, but I don’t see that as being a major issue for most users. The biggest issue will be the single m.2 slot, which means you won’t be able to add more ultra-fast NVMe storage without removing what’s there. However extra game storage can easily be shunted to a good quality SATA SSD and your most played game can live on the boot drive - bear in mind that the SATA 5 and 6 ports will be disabled because the m.2 slot uses those channels, this caught me out with my build.
The power supply is also an 80 Plus Bronze, rated for 750W. Again, no major issues here but if you already had a good PSU you could swap it and gain some modularity, as the included Cougar VTE X2 doesn’t support it.