The Best Gaming PC Build For Under $800

In $400-$800, Custom Builds by Branton1350 Comments

best gaming pc build 800 gtx 1060

Trying to build yourself the best $800 gaming PC possible? With that kind of budget, you can build an EPIC gaming PC that won’t need any upgrades for a long time! This build is fully loaded with an i5 7500, a 6GB Gigabyte GTX 1060 G1, DDR4 RAM and over a TB of storage to make sure you don’t fall short anytime soon.

All of this gives you a seriously badass custom gaming PC that will help you destroy the competition without doing the same to your wallet! It’ll be able to easily handle AAA games in 1080p at 60fps or better, and it’ll even give you solid 1440p performance as well!

A budget of $800 is going to get you the core parts you need to build a really solid mid-level gaming PC with a lot of upgrade potential – one that won’t need any kind of upgrades for quite a while. This beast will be relevant for at least 1-2 years, which is saying something when you’re talking about technology in 2017.

Have a question? Ask me in the comment section!

-A small Phillips screwdrivers
-Anti-static wristband (optional but suggested)
-Patience

That’s about all you’re going to need, seriously. Building a PC is a pretty simple process that requires your time more than anything else. But, watching a video walkthrough or reading a guide always helps, so I’ve added both of those in the next tab! There’s also this checklist which you can download and use to make sure that you have everything you need 🙂

Here are the basic steps that I follow when building:
-Install the Power Supply into the Case
-Install the processor (make sure the arrows line up)
-Install RAM (make sure they are in the right way before you try to seat them!)
-Mount the CPU cooler
-Place the rear I/O plate
-Mount the motherboard to the case (get your i/o ports through and use the middle standoff as a guide)
-Plug your GPU in
-Install any storage
-Plug everything into the appropriate spots
-Turn it on / Install OS & drivers!

In-depth Walkthrough

Instead of me typing out a ton of words to explain this process, why not watch this video put together by EasyPCbuilder.com? He does a great job of explaining everything in detail, and is going to get you running in 30 minutes.

Or, if you did want a ton of words, I’ve put together somewhat of a crash course to building your gaming PC that you might want to check out.

Keep in mind that it’s not the exact same build, but the process is really similar. There’s really only 1 way to do things, and it’s pretty hard to mess anything up if you’re being careful.

The Best $800 Gaming PC Build

Updated: April 10th, 2017

  • Corsair Carbide Spec 02

    Mid tower ATX case, great layout and cable management. Comes with 2 120mm fans.
    View

  • GIGABYTE GA-B250-HD3

    LGA 1151 socket motherboard, ATX size, B250 chipset, integrated 7.1 audio, built-in ethernet, 3x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0 ports, and 1x USB Type-C.
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  • Intel i5 7500

    3.4GHz base clock/3.8GHz boost clock, 6MB smart cache. Comes with a CPU cooler.
    View

  • Gigabyte GTX 1060 Windforce

    6GB GDDR5, 5 display outputs, amazing 1080p performance!
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  • EVGA 600 BQ

    600W power supply, 85% efficiency (bronze), semi-modular, 3-year warranty.
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  • 8GB Crucial Ballistix Sport LT DDR4 RAM

    8GB CL16 2400MHz RAM, dual-channel pair.
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  • WD Blue 1TB HDD

    3.5 inch, 7200 RPM, 64MB cache, quiet!
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  • Sandisk 120GB SSD

    530MB/s read, 400MB/s write, 85000 random read IOPS.
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DLC

Below you’ll find some suggested add-ons for this build, some I’ll mention more in-depth further down this page, but some are pretty self-explanatory like optical (DVD/CD) drives. Although not entirely necessary, optical drives can sometimes come in handy and I strongly recommended having one; if you have an old PC kicking around, it’s optical drive will more than likely work for you and you won’t need to buy a new one.

  • Windows 10 (USB Installer)

    Windows 10 is your best bet when it comes to picking an operating system. This version is a USB installer.
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  • Samsung 24x CD DVD±R/RW kit

    Mounts in an internal 5.25″ bay. Comes with mounting hardware & cables. An optical drive isn’t necessary, but if you’re installing your OS from a disc you’ll need it.
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  • Samsung Ultra-Slim External CD DVD±R/RW

    A lot of people are moving away from internally mounted optical drives, and it’s easy to see why! This one is definitely one of the cheaper & better external optical drives to consider.
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  • TP-LINK TL-WDN4800

    Internally mounted 2.4GHz / 5GHz N900 WiFi adapter. Required to use WiFi.
    View

Details

When you’re picking parts to build yourself a gaming PC there are lots of things to consider. For instance, do you plan on upgrading it in the future? Do you just want what you can get now, or do you want to eventually overclock your processor? Each path gives you a lot of new things to consider to effectively balance price with performance. But, why do all that when you could have me do it for you?!

Keep in mind that the price listed above is for the core components only, you will still need an operating system, and any other peripherals you don’t currently have.

Corsair’s Carbide Spec-02 case is an awesome choice at this level as it gives you everything you’ll need and a bit more for an awesome price. If you’re not a fan of this case, there are lots of other options available like the NZXT S340 or the Phanteks P400 just to name a couple. If you need a hand picking out a case, feel free to ask me in the comment section!

The Gigabyte GA-B250-HD3 ATX motherboard is a great unit for the price and it’s giving you all of the features that you’ll need, like integrated 7.1 audio, a built-in ethernet controller, 4x USB 3.0 ports, 2x USB 2.0, 6x SATA ports, support for up to 4 sticks of 2400MHz DDR4 RAM and lots of room for future expansion. Due to it running the B250 chipset, it does not support overclocking, for that you would need a Z270 chipset motherboard and a K model CPU.

The new 3.4GHz quad-core Intel i5 7500 CPU gives us a fair amount of processing power perfectly fit for 1080p 60fps gaming. As it’s not a K-model CPU, it does not support overclocking. The i5 7500 comes with a stock CPU cooler that’ll work great for most people, but you’re free to upgrade to something like the Cryorig H7 if you wanted a better cooling profile. A powerful CPU only gets a gaming PC so far and having a strong graphics card is significantly more important!

The GTX 1060 is great graphics card in both price and performance. It’s easily one of the best options at this level without going too crazy on cost. Gigabyte’s GTX 1060 Windforce is a great option that proves stronger than Nvidia’s Founders Edition release. It offers 6GB of 192-bit GDDR5 VRAM, a clock of 1556MHz base / 1771MHz boost, 5 display outputs, RGB lighting, and it also comes with a backplate. The GTX 1060 is also capable of supporting VR headsets like the Vive or Rift.

If you want to save a bit of money and feel like switching over to team Red (AMD) you can get an 8GB RX 480 graphics card for a bit less than the GTX 1060 without sacrificing any significant performance. I would suggest the MSI RX 480 Gaming X 8G.

There’s a lot of relatively high-performance parts in this build, so it would be safe to assume it would require massive amounts of power, right? Wrong! We really only need a few hundred watts of power to run this build full-out, so just to be safe we’re going with a 600W semi-modular power supply from EVGA. Although it’s not a top-tier power supply, it’s nowhere near a bad unit either, it’s mid-level, very reliable, and the fact that it’s semi-modular is awesome.

When it comes to RAM, 8GB is all you need for gaming this far into 2017, really. There will come a time when most games will demand 16GB or more, but that time hasn’t come just yet. Even some of the very few games that currently “require” 16GB run perfectly fine with an 8GB setup. With that in mind, if you’re like me and you end up running Chrome with 100 different tabs open while gaming at the same time, you might want to consider upgrading to 16GB.

For storage, you have 2 drives in this build, 1 HDD and 1 SSD. There’s a purpose for this, and it’s actually really useful. Your 120GB SSD is meant to be used as the primary “boot drive” or where Windows and any essential startup programs are installed – your PC will boot much quicker because of this. The HDD is then used as a mass storage drive for everything else, games, music, memes, whatever you want to put on it.

I didn’t pull any punches when it came to squeezing every ounce of power from your $800 budget, and you will not be disappointed! This build is easily capable of running pretty much whatever you throw at it on at least high settings in 1080p at 60fps or better! That being said, I did run over the budget a bit due to how things are priced right now, but that is almost unavoidable without losing way more in terms of performance.

Operating System

When it comes to picking an operating system, you have quite a few options laid out before you. But, the best / easiest two are either Windows or something Linux-based.

If you’re really strapped for cash, or you really just don’t like Windows, Ubuntu is a great option because it’s entirely free, and it’s really solid/secure. It’s a Linux-based OS and can play any game that supports Linux. More and more games are adding Linux support, but it definitely sucks when a game you’ve been waiting forever for ends up being Windows only…

windows-10-homeThe more expensive option is buying a copy of Windows. With DirectX 12 becoming more common and the Skylake-based processors basically demanding Windows 10, you might want to consider jumping on that right away, but it’s ultimately your call.

Installing your operating system can be done in a couple of different ways, either by DVD or a USB flash drive that you either create yourself or buy. Either will get the job done, but going for Windows & using the retail DVD (or USB flash drive) is going to be the easiest – any cheap DVD drive will work.

If you want to create your own USB flash drive to install something like Ubuntu from, you can find some decent instructions here.

Extras

If this is the absolute first gaming PC you’ve ever owned, then chances are high that you don’t have a very good keyboard + mouse combo, or that your monitor is sub-par to really enjoy your experience.

If this is the scenario that you’re in, then we have some really awesome suggestions for you to consider. Each peripheral was hand-picked for this build and they’re all guaranteed high quality.

  • Asus VS238H-P

    23″, 1080p 60Hz, 2ms response time – Great for gaming
    View

  • Azio MGK1

    An awesome mechanical keyboard using Kailh blue switches. Lots of tactile feedback.
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  • EVGA TORQ X10 Carbon

    Wired, adjustable weight & height system, ambidextrous (use either hand).
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  • Creative Sound BlasterX H5

    Easily the best gaming headset for under $100 and it’s not going to let you down!
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  • Reflex Lab Mouse Pad

    Super smooth, very accurate, and extremely comfortable to use! Reflex Lab mouse pads are available in 4 sizes from your basic 9″ x 8″ right up to a whopping 36″ x 18″!
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WiFi

Since the motherboard in this build does not have built-in WiFi (most don’t) you will need a WiFi adapter if you plan on using a wireless internet connection. That said, if you have the option to run a wired connection, do that instead because it will be faster & more reliable.

You have a couple options, you could get a decent USB-based WiFi adapter for about $20 that would work alright. Or you can get an internally mounted WiFi adapter that costs roughly $35, and will be more reliable than the USB option.

  • TP-LINK TL-WDN4800

    Internally mounted WiFi adapter. 2.4GHz or 5GHz.
    View

  • TP-LINK TL-WN722N

    USB WiFi adapter. 2.4GHz
    View

Conclusion

If you came here looking to build yourself a badass $800 gaming PC, I hope you found what you were looking for! This build puts out a lot of power for the price and, in my opinion, it’s probably the best value when it comes to 1080p gaming, or even 1440p!

Like I said at the beginning of this build guide, it’s going to take more than a year for this build to need any kind of serious upgrades; and even then, you might only need to throw another 8GB of RAM in there to maintain relevance.

All-in-all, you will be hard pressed to build a better gaming PC for under 800 dollars, unless you’re building it with a specific game or purpose in mind! Don’t forget to leave a comment below, and share this with your friends!

Get This $800 Build!

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Author

Branton

The first game I ever played on PC was Ultima Online way back in 1999, since then I've been hooked on PC gaming and putting together awesome builds! Thanks for stopping by!

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1,350 Comments on “The Best Gaming PC Build For Under $800”

  1. Hey,
    I have a quick question about the processor. If I buy the processor with the stock heat sink that it comes with and use the PC, can I upgrade and put a cooler onto the processor in the future?

  2. I have a question about installing windows. Can I just install windows by installing windows onto a USB from another PC or do I have to buy the USB online?

    1. You can definitely make your own USB installer. You can find a good walkthrough for that under the “Operating System” section if you need it.

  3. Hey, it’s me again. So I’m about to order the parts and I realized the motherboard can’t overclock, what would be a viable option for a overclockable motherboard within the same price. Also would a Thermaltake Water 3.0 Performer 99.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler be fine for a I5 7600K?

    1. Hey Levi,

      Unfortunately, motherboards that support overclocking are always going to be more expensive than those that don’t. That said, the least expensive option I know of is only about $10 more than the B250 board that comes with this build, you can check that out here. The Thermaltake Water 3.0 is pretty good, but I’ll recommend the similarly priced Corsair H60 over it all day.

  4. Me again, also do I need to have the TP-LINK TL-WDN4800 and the TP-LINK TL-WN722N if I don’t have an Ethernet connection, I’m going to install windows through a USB stick.

    1. You’ll need a WiFi adapter for sure if you can’t route an ethernet connection, but you only need either an internal or external unit, not both – I’d suggest an internal unit with the space you have. Picking a WiFi adapter is really something that I should write an entire post about (I’m doing that now), but you should take into consideration your WiFi router’s capabilities as well as a couple of other points before picking an adapter for your PC.

      There are three “primary” operating standards for both routers and adapters, N900, AC1300, and AC1900; these standards basically dictate the speed at which your WiFi will run, but even an N900 router/adapter pair (~450MB/s) will run faster than an internet connection can support – this is to say that running an AC1900 adapter/router won’t necessarily offer you a faster internet connection than an AC1300 or even an N900 unless your internet connection can hit speeds of ~1.3GB/s (spoiler: it can’t, fastest right now is ~20MB/s). The only reason you’d want a faster WiFi connection (ergo faster hardware) is if you regularly transfer large files over WiFi.

      Next is compatibility which is pretty basic. AC routers are backward compatible with N adapters, but N routers are not forward compatible with AC adapters. If you have an N router, you need an N adapter, if you have an AC router you can run any adapter.

      tldr; Pick an N900 adapter to ensure compatibility with everything.

      Sorry about the essay, but I thought I’d explain a bit about WiFi as it can be pretty confusing. I hope I didn’t make it more confusing!

    1. Hey DABiel,

      Yep, 100%. The biggest difference is that the Spec 02 comes with 2 fans and the Spec 01 comes with 1. There are some other minor interior differences also, like the Spec 02’s SSD trays and a couple of other minor points.

  5. Hi, so I see that you said under the motherboard part that it is a mATX board which I’m assuming is microATX. If this is true, why go with a mATX board when it sacrifices upgradability. Lastly, the actual motherboard on amazon is a standard ATX motherboard. Is it the wrong one or..?

    1. Hey Dan,

      In that instance, I would go with majority rules 🙂 I made a mistake in the description with the mATX (old board was an mATX), but the long description in the “Details” says ATX, the link was to an ATX board, and the pic is of an ATX board. You’re 100% correct in assuming it should say ATX in the short description!

      That said, an ATX mobo doesn’t necessarily offer a significant amount of expandability over mATX anymore, not unless you’re going to be running multiple GPUs and even there some mATX boards have Crossfire and/or SLI. A lot of mATX boards even come with 4 DIMMs for RAM these days.

  6. Hi Brandon,

    the GIGABYTE GA-B250-HD3 is not available where I am at, what would be a suitable alternative.

    Appreciate your help 🙂

  7. If i were to throw in an extra 50 dollars or so into this build, what would you recomend me uprgrading the most. Or is it even worth it to add that 50?

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