At Tom’s Guide, we review a lot of play equipment every year. I don’t have a full count of the number of gaming mice, keyboards, headsets, monitors, desktops and laptops we’ve gone through over the past decade, but that’s enough to fill a small electronics warehouse.
I’ve been writing about gaming gear for TG since 2013. During that time, I’ve reviewed some great products, a handful of really awful products, and a ton of products that fall somewhere in the middle. However, of all the gear I’ve tested, only a few have impressed me enough to want to incorporate them into my personal gaming setup.
It’s one thing for a Tom’s Guide author to share a positive or negative review; it’s another thing to pull back the curtain a bit and show you what we use ourselves. With that in mind, here’s a quick look at my home gaming PC setup and the five peripherals that make it all possible. To be clear, these may or may not be the perfect products for your setup, but I will personally vouch for each one.
A gaming rig and a monitor
While there is a whole subreddit dedicated to PC gamers showing off their battle stations, that’s a bit beyond the scope of this article. My gaming desk is nothing special, and it’s often quite messy on top of that. But it might be useful to give an overview of what my general setup looks like before diving into specific devices.
First, I built my machine in 2020, and you can read more about that in our “How to Build a Gaming PC“. (Many of you have already read it, and yes, I have received your angry emails on the subject.) The wide variety of PC builds, whether custom or pre-built, is truly dizzying, so discussing this particular one probably wouldn’t be very helpful.
Likewise, I don’t want to spend too much time discussing my monitor, for two reasons. First of all, buying a monitor is highly dependent on your personal configuration – how much space you have available, your PC’s performance, your own preferences for resolution versus frame rate, etc Discussing my monitor in detail wouldn’t be very helpful to anyone but me. Second, I have an old Samsung monitor that hasn’t been made for years, so it’s not like anyone can buy it.
Instead, let’s talk about the subject I know best: peripherals. Every device featured here should work great with any gaming PC, and they’re all currently available for purchase.
Logitech G502 Speed of Light
When I first looked at the Logitech G502, I gave it an unprecedented five out of five stars and said it was “by far the best all-around gaming mouse on the market.” When the mouse first came out, I was still putting my beloved Logitech G500 at its own pace, so I didn’t really need it at home.
However, in 2020 my G500s were starting to give way and I decided to upgrade to a fully wireless setup. I didn’t think twice; I had the Logitech G502 Speed of Light, and I’ve been using it ever since. This mouse has a comfortable design, easily programmable software, flawless wireless connectivity, and decent battery life, though I never had to worry about it. (More on this shortly.)
There’s only one reason I’d advise against the G502 Lightspeed, and that’s because Logitech recently released a slightly better successor, the Logitech G502 X Speed of Light. However, you can find great sales when stores try to sell through their G502 Lightspeed stock, and I recommend picking one up as soon as you see a good deal.
Logitech G Power Play
the Logitech G Power Play is probably the only “superfluous” part of my gaming setup, in that nothing bad would happen if I gave it up completely for one of the best gaming mouse pads. As I pointed out in my initial review, “Let’s not mince words: the PowerPlay system is a $100 mousepad.” However, this is no longer strictly accurate, as the PowerPlay has climbed as high as $120 over the past few years.
And yet, I can’t deny that the PowerPlay does exactly what it promises to do. You get a large, high-quality Logitech mouse pad, with a hard or soft surface. While you work and play, the PowerPlay charges your mouse, as long as it’s a Logitech G Lightspeed model. That’s the whole setup. It makes your mouse wireless 100% of the time rather than 99% of the time. It’s too expensive. It’s extravagant. It’s borderline stupid. And yet, I use it every day, and it has never let me down. Take it for what it’s worth.
For years I wondered when we would see a true wireless mechanical gaming keyboard from a major manufacturer. Logitech gave us one in the Logitech G613 – which I didn’t really like. I appreciated the comfortable key switches and decent wireless connectivity, but the design left something to be desired, as did the lack of a rechargeable battery.
A few years later, however, Logitech released the much better Logitech G915. It was the wireless mechanical gaming keyboard I’ve been waiting for, with a sturdy chassis, slim keys, low-profile switches, full RGB lighting, and a much sleeker profile. I had to bring my own wrist rest, and the asking price of $250 is truly mind-blowing. But in this case, you get what you pay for.
Friends and readers often ask me why I bother with a wireless keyboard, since keyboards are usually fixed, especially in a gaming setup. I don’t have a good answer at this point, except you would be amazed how often you move your keyboard around when it’s not tethered in one place. The lack of an extra wire is a godsend when installing new hardware or cleaning up your desk, and the G915’s Bluetooth connectivity makes it easy to carry around the house and connect to other devices. It’s not as useful as a wireless mouse or headset, but it’s a luxury worth having.
Logitech G Pro X Wireless
If there’s one element of my PC gaming setup that gets me thinking, it’s the Logitech G Pro X Wireless helmet. I loved this device when I first reviewed it, citing its comfortable fit and excellent sound quality. It’s proven to be a wonderful accessory when working from home, thanks to its powerful microphone and robust software options.
Although I still love this headset, however, there were a few issues. After two years, the battery started to degrade – and 20 hours was never the most generous amount of uptime to begin with. I’m probably at about 15, and there’s almost no time between the “low battery” tone and blackout. Also, it’s not a versatile helmet. The earbuds don’t fold, so you can’t carry it around. It connects via 2.4 GHz USB, and that’s it. There is no Bluetooth; there is no wired connection.
At $200, it’s also significantly more expensive than some of the best gaming headsets, even many wireless models. The soundscape and fit are so good that I still can’t bring myself to investigate other options (even though the Steelseries Arctis 7x is my go-to headset when traveling). But the day has probably come.
Why Logitech gear? Why wireless?
Astute readers may have noticed two themes in this article: all my gear is from Logitech and all my gear is wireless.
This last point is actually quicker to tackle. I have been reviewing gaming gear for almost a decade. During this time, I’ve seen wireless gear evolve from a curiosity to a perfectly good alternative to their wired counterparts. The old canards of lag and connectivity issues died a long time ago. Frankly, if you get wireless gear from a major game manufacturer, it should work just fine – and if it doesn’t, it’s probably a faulty unit rather than an internal issue. line scale. Wireless equipment is always expensive, however, it’s worth considering how much you want it.
As to why I use Logitech equipment, the answer is twofold. Above all, I like to use hardware from the same manufacturer when possible. I don’t like running multiple game software packages because they can strain system resources. You can easily sync RGB settings and create software profiles that activate for all your gadgets at once. Aesthetically, it also looks cool when all your gear matches.
The second reason is that Logitech is built to last. A few years ago, I visited Logitech’s headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland, and showed one of the engineers a well-worn Logitech laptop mouse that I had been carrying around in my backpack for about a decade. When I mentioned that it still worked perfectly, the engineer replied, “Why wouldn’t he?”
Either way, there’s plenty of great gaming gear out there, and these four products are by no means the be all and end all of PC gaming setups. But if you’re on the fence about a mouse, keyboard, or gaming headset, these are the ones I trust in my own home. Maybe they will serve you well too.