$750 Build

Looking to buy an affordable gaming PC that's anything but "cheap?" Then our $750 Budget Gaming PC is the one for you! While it doesn't have all the bells and whistles you'll find in higher-priced systems, like liquid cooling, tons of RAM, or fancy RGB lighting, for pure gaming purposes it's the best bang for the buck you'll find. It offers fantastic performance in all of today's latest games without breaking the bank, while also using a space-saving yet stylish micro-ATX chassis.

For August 2019, the Budget Gaming PC Build moves on from Intel to the superior AMD Ryzen 5 2600X, which has received a recent price cut, making it an unbeatable value. It packs in six cores and 12 threads, along with the ability to boost to well over 4GHz at stock settings using the great included heatsink. That makes it the perfect CPU to drive this system's GPU, the GeForce GTX 1660 6GB. Offering 20% better performance than the older GTX 1060 for far less money, it's a huge gift to gamers on a budget. Indeed, the 2600X/GTX 1660 duo is the perfect combo for maximizing framerates on a 1080p gaming monitor. In terms of storage, the Budget Gamer sports a 500GB solid-state drive, and thanks to major price drops, we can now fit an ultra-speedy PCIe model into the budget. Most other "budget gaming PCs" you'll find on the 'Net still use hard drives, which is totally unacceptable for a modern system. An SSD ensures that this PC isn't just fast when in the middle of a game, but fast at launching your games and everything else too! Also on board is 8GB of RAM, with the option to easily add more in the future thanks to a motherboard with four RAM slots. The build is powered by a reliable 450W power supply and wrapped up in an affordable mATX case from Thermaltake. If you'd like to accessorize your PC, just check out our recommendations for budget-friendly PC peripherals at the end of this guide, including our favorite low-cost 144Hz monitor and a great budget gaming mouse.

We update this guide monthly, as prices and components in this market segment change frequently, and a few dollars here or there could buy you (or cost you) a lot of speed! To see past part selections, flip over to the Budget Gamer Archive. We use Amazon's real-time pricing engine to bring you current U.S. prices, and also provide links to Amazon Canada, Amazon United Kingdom (UK), and Amazon Deutschland (Germany) for all the products we list, with substitutions made based on availability. To support the continued development of this guide, please use our links if you decide to purchase the products we recommend.

The $750 Budget Gaming PC - August 2019

The Pre-Built Option

    The Budget Gaming PC:

    CyberpowerPC Gamer Xtreme VR GXiVR8060A7

    Don't have the time or ability to build your own gaming PC? No problem! You can get a system equivalent to the DIY PC we list below completely assembled and ready to go from CyberpowerPC. It features the Intel Core i5-9400F 6-Core CPU, Nvidia's GeForce GTX 1660 6GB (our favorite budget GPU!), 8GB DDR4, a 120GB SSD, plus a 1TB hard drive.

    The Guru's Tip:

    As a bonus, this system even includes built-in wireless networking plus a mouse and keyboard, which cost extra in the DIY PC we recommend below.

The Build-Your-Own Option

    CPU:

    AMD Ryzen 5 2600X

    With games now demanding more than four cores, there's only one CPU to consider if you want to game on a strict budget: AMD's Ryzen 5 2600X, which is at its lowest price ever, below $150. This six-core, 12-thread chip is a true powerhouse, able to boost to over 4GHz.

    The Guru's Tip:

    This chip includes an awesome cooler, so there's no need to buy an extra one.

    Motherboard:

    Gigabyte B450 AORUS M

    To get the absolute best value in a gaming system, you don't want to spend a ton of money on a motherboard. Luckily, this Gigabyte board is packed with features despite a very reasonable price. It offers four RAM slots, 8 USB ports, and an M.2 slot, which you'll be using for this build.

    The Guru's Tip:

    Note that we're using a compact micro-ATX motherboard here, which will work perfectly with the micro-ATX case we recommend for this build. Be sure not to substitute a larger ATX motherboard!

    Video Card:

    Zotac GeForce GTX 1660 6GB

    Well, after a good run, the AMD's reign as the budget gamer's choice is over. Nvidia has simply clobbered it with the GTX 1660, which is 20% faster than what AMD offers at this pricepoint, handing it a clear victory. It's the perfect GPU for gaming at 1920 x 1080, the standard resolution on most mid-range gaming monitors.

    The Guru's Tip:

    To get the most out of this card, we suggest you pair it with a frame-syncing monitor, like the one listed at the end of this guide!

    Memory:

    Ballistix 2x4GB Sport LT DDR4-2666

    The latest games definitely require more than 4GB of RAM, so this 2x4GB kit is a wise investment and not something you want to skimp on. This kit offers a 2666MHz speed rating, a nice boost over standard 2133MHz kits that sell for the same price or more. Plus, by using two sticks, you'll be taking advantage of dual-channel operation, which speeds up many tasks by 2-3%.

    The Guru's Tip:

    Note that this system will not support higher-clocked RAM kits, so don't spend any extra money on such models.

    Solid-State Drive:

    Intel SSD 660p 512GB PCIe

    Simply put, any PC you build today has to have an SSD. If you see build guides suggesting you set up your gaming PC with a hard drive as your system drive, they're giving you bad advice. Yes, you trade a little capacity going with an SSD, but consider that the P1 is about 10x faster than any hard drive, and you'll understand that the tradeoff is worth it. So load up Windows and a bunch of your favorite games, and prepare to be blown away!

    The Guru's Tip:

    This is among the least-expensive PCIe drives on the market, and undercuts many slower SATA drives.

    Case:

    Thermaltake Versa H17

    Build a stylish system without breaking the bank using the H17. It's compact and looks great. It includes one 120mm exhaust fan for cooling, and has a builder-friendly interior.

    The Guru's Tip:

    Another great option in this size and price range is the Cooler Master Q300L, which offers a windowed side panel and edgy styling.

    Power Supply:

    Seasonic S12III 450 SSR-450GB3

    This 450W Bronze-rated model is a perfect pick for this build. With dual 6+2-pin power cables, it's ready for any video card you could fit in this system. Plus, it's backed by unrivaled service and a 5-year warranty.

    The Guru's Tip:

    We strongly recommend buying at least a Bronze-rated power supply like this one. "White"-rated power supplies are often the same price, but use outdated designs that run hot and waste a lot of electricity.

    Operating System:

    Microsoft Windows 10 Flash Drive

    Windows 10 is so much better than Windows 8.1, it makes us wonder whether Microsoft even tested Win8 in the first place. Windows 10 is easy to use right out of the box, and has a lot of refinements under the hood as well.

    The Guru's Tip:

    This version of Windows will install in just a few minutes thanks to the USB 3.0 interface!

Optional Components

    Wireless Card:

    TP-LINK Archer T6E AC1300

    Add high-speed wireless networking to your gaming PC with this awesome expansion card, which packs in dual-stream 802.11ac networking and speeds of up to 1300Mbps.

    The Guru's Tip:

    Once the video card is installed, there will be two free PCIe slots in this system, and you should use the bottom slot to allow as much airflow to the video card above.

    Hard Drive:

    Seagate Barracuda 2TB

    If you need more space for games and want the most cost effective bulk storage you can get, you want the Barracuda 7200RPM hard drive. It simply can't be beat in terms of value.

    The Guru's Tip:

    Remember, you do not want to use this for your OS installation, which should be on an SSD. A hard drive should only be used as secondary storage capacity.

    The Gaming Keyboard/Mouse Combo:

    Corsair Gaming K55 Keyboard + Harpoon RGB Gaming Mouse

    Corsair is driving a bargain that none of the generics you'll find on the market can even touch: a legitimate set of RGB gaming peripherals for a fantastic price. This combo includes the ultra-popular K55 keyboard and unmatched Harpoon mouse, and both can be set up and controlled via Corsair's iCUE software.

    The Guru's Tip:

    If purchased separately, this kit would cost an extra $10-$15, so you're getting a nice discount by buying the combo.

    The 24-inch 144Hz Gaming Monitor:

    Acer XFA240

    PRICE DROP! If you want to pick up a true "gaming" monitor, you want something with a high refresh rate. The very best value out there in high-refresh-rate monitors is the stylish Acer XFA240. It features a 24" 1920x1080 panel capable of displaying images at up to 144Hz, which makes it infinitely smoother than a standard 60Hz monitor that costs just a bit less. And thanks to its FreeSync technology, it will run with zero lag or screen-tearing. While FreeSync was pioneered by AMD, Nvidia has recently "unlocked" it in its GeForce drivers, meaning this model will work perfectly with the GeForce 1660 GPU we recommend.

    The Guru's Tip:

    This model even features a fully-adjustable stand, making it far easier to "dial in" than monitors with simple tilt adjustments.