The $450 Cheap Gaming PC Build for Summer 2016 (console killer)

cheap gaming pc build 2016

Whoever said you can’t put together a real cheap gaming PC build that can run the latest PC games quite nicely is quite simply misinformed. It’s time for another CGB build – this one has been compiled for those of you putting together a new gaming system this summer and looking to maximize gaming performance and reliability for a tight budget of around $450.

Let me introduce the Summer 2016 “Console Killer”.

PC gaming can be an expensive hobby, but it truly doesn’t have to be. With the following cheap gaming PC build you’ll have a system capable of playing any of the latest games quite nicely without breaking the bank.

Assuming you’ll be sticking to the standard 1080p resolution of 1920 x 1080, the following cheap gaming PC build with its decent AMD processor, 8GB of RAM and fairly powerful GeForce GTX 950 video card will perform at or above the level of current-generation consoles (PS4 and XBox One) and serves as a nice entry-level rig for PC gaming.

Sure, when it comes to the more graphically demanding titles on the market (games like Doom 4, Witcher 3, Crysis 3, GTA 5, Far Cry 4, etc) then you’ll have to go easy on the in-game eye candy settings to play smoothly, but at this price point you can’t really complain.

Ok, enough talk, let’s get into the list of parts chosen that make up the $450 cheap gaming PC build for this summer, as well as recommended optional accessories to go along with it.


The $450 Cheap Gaming PC Build


Note: All prices below were correct at the time of writing but may fluctuate day to day.

COMPONENT MODEL PRICE (USD)
CPU AMD FX-6300 6-Core Black Edition $95
CPU COOLER Included with CPU
Graphics Card EVGA GeForce GTX 950 2GB GDDR5 $140
Motherboard Asus M5A78L-M AM3+ mATX $53
RAM Crucial Ballistix Sport 8GB DDR3 1600 Mhz $37
Hard Drive Western Digital Blue 1TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache $50
Case Rosewill FBM-05 Mini Tower mATX $29
Power Supply Antec VP-450 $38
TOTAL ~ $442


Key Features


We know how frustrating it can be to have to sometimes dig around for certain specs on parts (not everything is always clearly listed on product pages unfortunately) so here’s a few extra specs you may wish to know.

  • Target Budget: $450 US Dollars
  • Last Updated: June 2016
  • Case Size: Mini-Tower (small)
  • Processor/Motherboard Socket: AM3+
  • SLI-Capable (multi-GPU): No
  • Maximum RAM Supported: 32GB (DDR3 only)
  • WiFi: No (for WiFi get a PCI/USB wireless adapter)
  • VR-Ready: No
  • Suitable for Overclocking: No
  • Front-panel USB Ports: 1 x USB 3.0, 2 x USB 2.0
  • Rear-panel USB Ports: 2 x USB 3.0, 8 x USB 2.0
  • Built-in Case Fans: 2


Optional Components



The above list makes up the core system for the console-killing cheap gaming PC build. Below are the recommended operating system and accessories to go along with it if you need to purchase these parts too. Keep in mind that the optical drive is totally optional these days because of the rise of digital services like Steam (and you can install Windows from a USB drive).

COMPONENT MODEL PRICE (USD)
Operating System Microsoft Windows 10 Home (USB flash drive version) $119
Monitor Acer G236HL 23-Inch LED $102
Keyboard & Mouse Logitech Desktop MK120 Mouse/Keyboard Combo $17
Optical Drive LG GH24NSC0B $18
Speakers / Headset Logitech Z313 / Logitech G230 $35 / $40

 

Processor

For a real tight budget build you can’t go wrong with the AMD FX-6300 which has been a top budget gaming processor for a long time now. For under 100 dollars you’re getting a very capable CPU that is powerful enough to handle the latest games, and for a while to come.

It comes with a CPU stock cooler so you don’t have to worry about that if you won’t be overclocking (which this build isn’t designed for anyway).

Graphics Card

As for the most important part in any gaming build, your video card, the GeForce GTX 950 easily holds the crown right now as one of the very best bang for your buck budget-friendly gaming cards. You won’t find a better performing card around this price and it’s powerful enough to run any PC game on the market right now quite nicely.

cheap gaming video card 2016

Motherboard

The Asus M5A78L-M motherboard is a cheap board that’ll do everything we need for a budget gaming system like this. Don’t expect any fancy features – with our $450 cap you don’t want to spend extra on a board that’ll come with features you won’t ever need. This particular model has been received well by computer builders and Asus are one of the better motherboard manufacturers out there so it makes for a great choice.

RAM

Now to the memory included in the cheap gaming PC build which is the ever popular Crucial Ballistix Sport 8GB DDR3 1600 Mhz RAM. You could shave off a little money by opting for 4GB instead of 8GB, which wouldn’t alter your gaming performance in a noticeable way in the vast majority of PC titles.

However, in my opinion you’re better off getting 8GB from the get-go even when working with a real tight budget like $450 because it’ll future proof your build that little bit more. Plus, RAM isn’t the most expensive hardware. Don’t get me wrong though – for a budget-conscious custom gaming PC I wouldn’t ever go over 8GB because anything more than that isn’t smart use of your funds and is much better spent on your CPU or graphics card.

Hard Drive

For this cheap gaming PC build you’ve got the stock standard Western Digital Blue 1TB hard drive which you can’t go wrong with. It’s not feasible at this price point to include a Solid State Drive into the main core system.

However if you are set on getting one for your build to speed up loading of your operating system and a few other of your commonly used programs (such as Office, iTunes, Steam etc), the Kingston SUV400S37 120GB is a solid budget-friendly, reliable choice.

Case

Now to the Rosewill FBM-05 Mini Tower Case which is hands down one of the best really cheap PC cases out there at the moment. But don’t be fooled by the price – it’s reliable and of fairly decent quality with all the features you need for a basic gaming build. You also get 2 built-in fans which helps with cooling, as well a clean and simple design.

There aren’t too many gaming PC cases I’d recommend around the 30 dollar mark, but this one is an exception and you can’t go wrong with it assuming you don’t need a lot of extra room in your case for extensive future upgrades.

Power Supply

Last but not least is your trust power supply, which is often overlooked by builders yet is an integral part of a reliable custom build. The Antec VP-450 is a well respected budget PSU that won’t let you down, and the 450 watts of power it provides you is more than enough for a PC of this caliber.

Networking

As for networking, like all modern motherboards your build supports LAN which is what I recommend over wireless internet for online play as it’s generally faster and more stable (although wireless can be great too – depends on your connection/router etc).

If you do want wireless support in your build, you can either get a wireless adapter which slots into one of the spare PCI ports on your motherboard (I’d suggest the ) or you can get a USB dongle (such as the ).

Final Thoughts

So that’s all of the core parts that make up the summer 2016 cheap gaming PC build – I hope it helps. This rig makes the perfect choice for those of you looking to get your foot into the PC gaming door without spending a fortune (roughly the same as buying a current-gen console in fact).

I hope this helps you and if you have any questions or general feedback on the build then leave a comment below and I’ll help out where I can.

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