Best ITX Gaming PC

Are you a gamer who wants extreme gaming capability in a tiny package? Then the $1,500 High-End Mini-ITX Gaming PC Build is for you! This system takes up barely 1/3 the space of a typical gaming desktop while packing in the same performance. That's perfect for gaming on the go or in your living room, making this small form factor PC a great pick to take to the local eSports tournament or for showing off the latest virtual reality title to your friends. In other words, despite its compact size, the $1,500 Mini-ITX Gaming PC Build is a totally legit high-end gaming PC, the equal of big towers that cost the same or more!

For December 2020, this build gets a complete overhaul. First up, we switch over to the Intel Core i7-10700K, which is an awesome gaming CPU at a great price. In terms of the video card, right now you're going to be on hold, as all new GPUs are sold out, but the card you will buy once it's in stock is the amazing new EVGA GeForce RTX 3060 Ti XC, which will slip easily into this tiny PC and yet packs in more power than the last-gen RTX 3080 Super. We expect it be available starting in January, and in the meantime, you can use the built-in video on the 10700K CPU to get your system up and running!

Also on the build list is 16GB of speedy DDR4 RAM, along with a quick 1TB PCIe-based solid-state drive, which has made SATA drives obsolete. But the defining component of the $1,500 Mini-ITX Gaming PC Build is the legendary SilverStone SG13 chassis, which has no equal in terms of price or compactness-per-dollar (yeah, we just made that up, but it's real, trust us!). Also on board is SilverStone's impressive PF120 liquid cooler, which easily puts all low-profile air coolers to shame, along with a 550W power supply, upgraded from the 500W model we used to recommend to give some extra breathing room to powerful components in this build. Want to learn more about this build or ask questions? Then check out our YouTube video walking you through how to build this PC!

We also recommend our favorite accessories for the $1,500 Mini-ITX Gaming PC Build at the end of this guide, including a great keyboard and mouse, so don't forget to scroll down to check those out! We update the $1,500 Mini-ITX Gaming PC Build guide every month - feel free to flip over to The $1,500 High-End Mini-ITX Gaming PC Build Archive to see how this components have changed over time. You can also learn how to build the $1,500 Mini-ITX Gaming PC by reading our step-by-step assembly guide, which will show you how to build a system in the unique SG13 case. Note that in our guide below, we have dedicated links to Amazon or Newegg for our US readers, and Amazon UK, Amazon Canada, and Amazon Germany for readers in other regions. Your use of these Amazon product links is the only thing that will keep this site going!

The $1,500 High-End Mini-ITX Gaming PC - December 2020

  • CPU:

    Intel Core i7 10700K @Newegg

    Intel currently holds the gaming crown with its Core i7-10700K, an eight-core, 16-thread CPU with an all-core boost speed of 4.7GHz out of the box! This chip is equivalent to the last-gen Core i9-9900K, but for less money, and on a more modern Z490/socket 1200 platform. And while AMD has challenged it with its new Zen 3 CPUs, these are both more expensive and completely unavailable, so if you're building today (or any time this year), the Core i7 is the clear choice!

    The Guru's Tip:

    This CPU does not come with a cooler, so make sure to pick up the liquid cooler we recommend later in this guide.

  • Motherboard:

    ASRock Z490M-ITX/ac @Newegg

    This board has all the features you need for a high-end build, despite its reasonable pricepoint. Being based on the new Z490 chipset, it of course supports the 10th-Gen Intel CPU (and will also support 11th-Gen Rocket Lake CPUs coming next year), and it offers up dual M.2 slots, built-in 802.11ac networking, and eight USB ports (including a Type-C port). It also has the 3-pin ARGB connector you need to control this system's sweet lighting!

    The Guru's Tip:

    Another advantage of going with Intel is that you can use this motherboard's HDMI or Displayport outputs for video if you want to hold off on getting a video card!

  • Video Card:

    EVGA GeForce RTX 3060 Ti 8GB XC @Newegg

    CRITICAL UPDATE: After months of waiting, we finally have a next-gen GPU that we can confirm will fit in this system, but you'll have to wait just a bit longer to get it! The EVGA GeForce RTX 3060 Ti 8GB is more powerful than the last-gen RTX 2080 Super for around half the price, and more importantly, is just 8" long and 2 slots wide, meaning it fits perfectly in this system! We expect it to start shipping in January 2021, so for now, you can build up your system using the graphics output built into the Intel CPU.

    The Guru's Tip:

    Every other new video card on the market is either too long or too wide to fit in this system. Yes, we've considered all the options, and this is your best bet!

  • Memory:

    Patriot 2x8GB Viper Steel DDR4-3600 17-19-19 @Newegg

    As with all modern CPU platforms, you need to use DDR4 memory, and to get the most out of it, you want high frequency DDR4. So we go with this awesome 2x8GB DDR4-3600 kit for the $1,500 Mini-ITX Gaming PC Build!

    The Guru's Tip:

    DDR4-3600 is the sweet spot in terms of price/performance, and this kit has the tight timings to back up the high frequency!

  • Solid-State Drive:

    XPG Gammix S11 1TB @Newegg

    By far the best drive at its pricepoint, the S11 1TB will make this system fly! It features high-quality TLC NAND and the ultra-fast PCIe interface, allowing it to blow past similarly-priced SATA drives!

    The Guru's Tip:

    Thanks to this model's sleek M.2 design, it requires no cables, and will literally take up no storage space in the $1,500 Mini-ITX Gaming PC Build. Just note that you'll need a jeweler's-type screwdriver to install it.

  • Case:

    Silverstone SG13 Black

    The SG13 is the smallest ITX case available from any major manufacturer, making it the clear choice for the $1,500 Mini-ITX Gaming PC Build. There are smaller "kick-started" cases out there, but they often come with a whole lot of "gotchas." The SG13, on the other hand, is supported by the biggest name in the ITX industry, SilverStone. At under 12 liters, it's truly tiny, but packs a big punch!

    The Guru's Tip:

    Learn more about this case in our hands-on build video!

  • Power Supply:

    EVGA Supernova 550 GM

    Just because we're using an ITX case that can theoretically fit ATX power supplies doesn't mean we actually want to fill the $1,500 Mini-ITX Gaming PC Build with a big fat box and lots of cables. So we instead recommend this awesome SFX unit. It's fully modular, offers Gold-rated efficiency, and at 550W, has more than enough power to support this system, which will draw under 400W at load.

    The Guru's Tip:

    Note that you'll need the bracket below to mount this small PSU in the case we recommend.

  • Adapter:

    SilverStone RL-PP08B Bracket

    This nifty little component is what allows you to fit both an SFX power supply and a powerful CPU cooler into the $1,500 Mini-ITX Gaming PC Build. Due to its large offset, it places the power supply all the way at the top of the case, providing far more space for the cooler we spec below!

    The Guru's Tip:

    Remember - SFX power supplies will not work in this build unless you use this adapter!

  • CPU Cooler:

    SilverStone PF120-ARGB

    Keeping a CPU cool in an ultra-compact system like the $1,500 Mini-ITX Gaming PC Build can be a challenge, but this high-powered liquid cooler has what it takes to get the job done. In our testing, a liquid cooler was far superior to any low-profile air cooler, and it's easier to install too!

    The Guru's Tip:

    For best performance, set this up as an intake, with the fan placed between the front panel and the radiator, oriented with the fan frame towards the inside of the case.

  • Operating System:

    Microsoft Windows 10 on USB @Newegg

    Windows 10 is by far the best OS for gaming, and Microsoft has proven that it's dedicated to improving Windows 10 regularly, with major updates arriving every Spring and Fall. Don't forget to pick up a copy for your $1,500 Mini-ITX Gaming PC Build!

    The Guru's Tip:

    As of our latest update, the USB version of Windows is back in stock, but you can also get the downloadable version. All you need to install it is an 8GB+ USB 3.0 drive.

Optional Components

  • The Budget Gaming Keyboard:

    Logitech G213 Gaming Keyboard

    Set yourself up right, while saving money at the same time, by going with Logitech's G213 gaming keyboard. It offers plenty of performance and comfort for a bargain price!

    The Guru's Tip:

    You can control the RGB effects of this keyboard using Logitech's GHub software.

  • The Pro Gaming Mouse:

    Razer Basilisk X HyperSpeed Wireless

    Offering cutting-edge performance, there's nothing like the Basilisk X for anywhere near the price. Ultra-sensitive sensor, Razer's awesome HyperSpeed wireless system, and perfect ergonomics. It's a great mouse!

    The Guru's Tip:

    Remember, you're getting a gaming-grade wireless mouse here for the same price as most wired mice!

  • The Gamer's Dream Monitor:

    LG 27GL83A-B

    Need a perfect high-performance monitor to pair with your game box? Then go for LG's awesome 27GL83A-B, which offers up a 27" 2560 x 1440 IPS panel with an insane 1ms response time, a 144Hz refresh rate, and G-Sync compatibility, which allows the monitor's refresh rate to be matched to the GPU's framerate, eliminating tearing and lag.

    The Guru's Tip:

    LG is absolutely taking over the gaming monitor market with its latest models, which offer technology no other manufacturer can match!