500 Dollar Gaming PC Budget Build Component Guide 2017
$500 is, comparatively, a lot of money when it comes to buying gaming machines. Consoles are an obvious option when you consider the price, but let me tell you, a gaming PC is way better than the latest console if you want the most value for your money.
Without going into much detail, I’ll just say that I am more inclined towards gaming PCs than consoles because of the control, customization ability and longevity they offer to serious gamers.
You can easily get Sony’s Playstation 4 or Microsoft’s Xbox One for around $450 and they aren’t bad options as well. BUT for an additional $50 if you can entertain yourself with a more future friendly machine, then why not?
The gaming build I’ll be suggesting here will run all games at 1080p and ultra high settings without showing any signs of heating. Moreover, a PC always edges past gaming consoles because of its instantly upgradeable features.
With newer and cheaper tech coming out, we’ve updated our $500 Gaming PC build for 2017. Here’s a list of components you’ll require to build an amazing 500 dollar gaming PC!
Intel Core i3 7100
I’ve always felt that Intel’s Core i3 lineup is quite sufficient for moderately high-end gaming and that still stands true as the 7th generation of the i3 lineup continues to provide gains with better power consumption and less heat generation.
The i3 7100 now replaces our i3 6100 recommendation from last year, and is, at the moment, one of the most budget-friendly options for gamers and should be able to hold its own playing almost all new titles.
While the price difference between the i3 6100 and the 7100 is very small, you get newer tech and a boost of a couple hundred MHz with the 7100, making it a solid choice for our 500 dollar gaming PC.
GIGABYTE GA-B250M Micro-ATX
The Gigabyte B250M-DS3H replaces our earlier H110 recommendation and is now the motherboard we suggest for a $500 gaming PC.
The B250 is compatible with your 7th generation i3 7100 CPU out of the box, while the H110 would need a BIOS update, and if you do not get it updated from the store, you will need to boot it up with a 6th generation processor first.
Everything else is standard. You get two DIMM slots for DDR4 memory and the micro-ATX form factor is good for a smaller case that will fit your budget gaming PC build.
Once again, if you’re looking for a solid budget gaming PC in 2017, this Gigabyte B250 mobo is a great buy and beats the H110 easily.
#3. Memory (RAM)
Kingston HyperX Fury 8GB
Since our motherboard supports DDR4 RAM, we are going to pick a single Kingston’s HyperX Fury 8GB chip. Even though our motherboard supports two slots, we are picking one (which is more expensive than two 4GB chips) for future upgrade options. If you get two chips, you’ll have to replace them if you wish to upgrade to 16GB in the future.
Once again, we are sticking close to our budget since Kingston RAMs are some of the most budget-friendly chips. As for 8GB, that’s more than enough for any game, and I’ve even played everything maxed on 6GB machines, so 8GB is a safe bet. This chip is clocked at 2133 MHz btw, which is fine because our motherboard supports it.
#4. Graphics Card
Zotac Geforce GTX 1050ti 4GB Gddr5
This is one of the best graphics cards you can get on a budget of around $150 right now. Zotac’s version of the GTX 1050ti has two fans and more than enough horse power to run triple-A titles at high settings.
We are going with 4GB of GDDR5 memory on the card, and while the 2GB version is $20 cheaper, 4GB is a safer bet considering how most games now feature high quality textures, which require high VRAM.
- Memory: 4gb Gddr5
- Memory Interface: 128-bit
- Core Clock: 1303MHz/1417MHz boost clock
- Cuda Cores: 768
- Architecture: Pascal
- SLI: No
- DirectX: 12
- Outputs: 1xHDMI
- 1xDisplay Port
Western Digital 1TB
1 Terabyte is enough storage for any gamer as of now, since even the biggest titles are under 100 GB. This will leave you with a lot of space for storing all your games and movies etc (I do prefer external storage for backups and movies etc). This Western Digital 1TB HDD comes with a 24 month warranty, a 64MB cache and a spin-rate of 7200 rpm. At $50, it’s a good deal.
#6. Power Supply (PSU)
EVGA 500 W1 80+ 500 watts
A lot of people skimp on power supply, and that’s a very bad idea because a faulty or low quality PSU can ruin your whole rig with a short circuit and fry the motherboard. Which is why we are going with an EVGA PSU of 500 Watts.
Even though the power requirements of this rig are well under 500 Watts, this PSU leaves room for upgrades and provides all the juice you need without stressing under load. This one also has an efficiency rating of 80% which is great, and means that it draws 600 Watts at max capacity.
Thermaltake Versa H21 Windowed Mid Tower
I’ve always picked either Cooler Master or Thermaltake cases for myself because they are budget-friendly and provide good value for money. The same is the case with this Thermaltake H21 case, which comes with mesh filter at the front and a couple of nice fan mount options.
I picked out the windowed version of this case which is a couple dollars more expensive, but I love being able to look inside my rig from time to time.
- Case Type: Mid Tower
- Material: SPCC
- External Bay: 3x 5.25″
- Internal Bay: 3x 3.5″ or 2.5″, 3x 2.5″
- Expansion Slots: 7
- Front I/O Panel: 1x USB 3.0 Port, 1x USB 2.0 Port, 1x HD Audio
(You might also be interested in looking at the Best Gaming Laptops Under $500)
So there you go guys, this is our 500 dollar gaming PC build that you can follow step by step. It will run most triple-A titles at high settings with 1080p resolution and you won’t have to worry about space, performance or heating, all without breaking the bank! If you have any questions or concerns, please drop a comment below.