If you're looking into building yourself the best gaming PC for around $600, you're definitely going to want to look at this one! This budget gaming beast has plenty of power where it's needed and lots of upgrade potential for when you're ready to push it even further!
I've put together an amazing budget build including AMD's R5 2600, an AMD RX 580, 8GB of DDR4 RAM, and 480GB of SSD storage! This cheap but powerful budget build serves as a great platform to start with and upgrade as you go, but it's already going to dominate 1080p gaming!
Competitive shooters, MOBAs, indie games, and all eSports titles will run flawlessly on this build. It'll also give you that smooth 60fps+ experience in graphically demanding AAA games like GTA: V, Black Ops 4, Battlefield 5, Hitman 2, and practically everything else!
Have a question? Ask me in the comment section!
Best prebuilt gaming pc under 600
If you'd rather skip over the build process and get right to gaming, that's possible. A prebuilt gaming desktop can get you gaming without any work required on your part. Here's an option with similar specs to the DIY build on this page (right below this). It's easier to set up, but you'll get more out of the build I recommend.
- CPU: AMD R3 1200
- GPU: 4GB RX 580
- RAM: 8GB DDR4 RAM
- Storage: 1TB HDD
- Connectivity: WiFi + Ethernet | 1 x Dual-link DVI, 3 x DisplayPort, 1 x HDMI | 9 x USB (4 X USB 2.0; 5 X USB3.0)
- Comes with Windows 10 installed
- Comes with a keyboard + mouse
- Includes a 1 year warranty covering parts and labor
The Best $600 Gaming PC Build
REQUIRED TOOLSThe tools you need:
- A small Phillips screwdriver
Size #2 works well as a general rule.
- An anti-static wristband
Optional but recommended.
- Patience And lots of it.
That’s really all you need to assemble your new desktop. All of the mounting hardware and cables will come with the parts listed above. The only time you might need something extra is if you’re modifying the build on this page.
HOW TO BUILD YOUR PC...
Super Simplified Build Steps:
- Install the power supply into the case
- Install the processor (CPU)
- Seat RAM in the motherboard
- Mount the CPU cooler (don’t forget thermal paste if you're not using a stock cooler!)
- Insert the motherboard’s rear I/O plate into the case's rear I/O slot
- Mount the motherboard in the case (get your i/o ports through and use the middle standoff as a guide)
- Plug your graphics card into the motherboard
- Install storage drives
- Plug all power and data cables in where they're required (storage, case, motherboard, graphics card, etc)
- Turn your PC on
- Install your OS
- Install and update ALL drivers
If you’ve never built a computer before, then you probably want to take some time to learn the basics before getting ahead of yourself. To do that you have a couple of options you can choose from.
The first, and probably the easiest way for most people to learn is finding a walkthrough on YouTube from a reputable tech channel. Here’s one by BitWit as an example.
Alternatively, I’ve put together an in-depth guide on how to build a PC as well as a FAQ to address the most common questions and problems. I've also put together a short post covering 10 of the most common mistakes people make when building.
Add-ons like SSDs and optical drives are by no means necessary, but they may give you a better experience. Others, like an operating system, are much more crucial. If you're planning on installing your OS from a disc instead of a USB flash drive then you'll definitely need an optical drive.
LG Electronics 8X USB 2.0 External DVD drive
Supports rewriting as well as M-DISCs. External optical drives are quickly becoming the standard as more cases move away from internal 5.25″ bays. The best hard drive for gaming is a must for an awesome build.
This build is perfectly suited for 1080p gaming, it'll handle most AAA titles on at least high settings while putting out 60fps+. That's to say, you can expect this build to handle all of your favorite games without a problem - in 1080p.
There are, however, some exceptions. Red Dead Redemption 2, for instance, is an extremely demanding game by today's standards and this build would only be able to run on with a mixture of mid/high settings to maintain 60fps in most areas.
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 that you don't currently have (mouse, keyboard, audio, etc).
Case: Holding everything together is the Thermaltake Versa H18 micro-ATX case. It gives you lots of options for expansion in terms of added storage, or a more intensive cooling profile. The H18 comes with a total of 3x front USB ports as well as 3.5mm headphone and microphone jacks. It's also boasting a tempered glass side panel and a full PSU shroud. The compromise being it only comes with 1x 120mm fan - 1 is pretty much good enough for this build, but you might want to add 1 more.
There are A LOT of other cases that would work for this build, I really suggest that you take a look at some other options just in case you can find one that you like more! If you need some suggestions, check out what I consider the 5 best mATX cases!
Motherboard: The default motherboard, ASRock's B450M Pro4, is an awesome mATX option for a Ryzen-based build. It gives you support for all of the features we need with room to expand down the line, including 4x SATA3 ports, multiple case fan headers, 8x USB ports, 4 slots for DDR4 RAM, integrated audio, a built-in ethernet controller, and even M.2 NVMe SSD support.
Processor (CPU): AMD's R5 2600 is a complete beast when it comes to gaming, streaming, and pretty much anything else. With a sub-$200 price tag, the R5 2600 simply cannot be beaten in terms of price vs performance.
It's loaded with 6 cores and 12 threads that'll operate at a modest 3.9GHz by default. Since the R5 2600 fully supports overclocking, you could easily squeeze out even more performance if you don't mind spending some time testing.
The R5 2600 comes with a good CPU cooler AMD has dubbed the Wraith Stealth. It works great and can perform similarly to a Hyper 212 EVO.
Graphics Card (GPU): An RX 580 is definitely the best option for this level of build right now, it completely tears up 1080p gaming and you're going to be happy you have one.
PowerColor's 8GB RX 580 RED Dragon offers up some of the best price vs performance out of any currently released card of the same tier. It’s capable of 60fps on at least high settings in pretty much any AAA game, it cools great and overclocks alright to boot! There are lots of different variants available, but they'll all perform basically the same so just choose the cheapest priced option!
System Memory (RAM): Running 8GB of Kingston's HyperX FURY 3000MHz DDR4 RAM is going to serve you well while gaming. The default kit comes with 2x4GB sticks (a dual channel pair) which leaves you with 2 leftover slots that you can easily use to add more RAM.
This far into 2019, 8GB of RAM is a slowly starting to become insufficient. Ideally, you'll want to run 16GB. Keep in mind that doing so will increase the price of the core build above $600.
Power Supply (PSU): EVGA's 500 BR power supply is a good, reliable, power supply. It's rated to 80+ bronze and comes with a 3-year warranty + 24/7 technical support from EVGA. As the 500 BR is a non-modular unit, all cables are permanently attached. If you'd prefer a semi-modular supply, I'd suggest checking out the 500 BQ instead - it's a little more expensive but objectively much better.
Storage: When it comes to storage, there's a Kingston A400 480GB SSD in this build by default. Beyond that, you can easily add up to 3 more drives based on what the motherboard will support. All you'll need are extra SATA data cables and the additional drives themselves.
You're also going to need an operating system for your new build, and due to the fact that the newest iteration of DirectX requires Windows 10 (Disc or USB), that's going to be the version of Windows you want to consider. You could always go with an older version if you wanted to, you just wouldn't be able to take advantage Windows 10 exclusives like DirectX 12, the Forza series, Dead Rising 4, and so on. It comes in both disc and USB flash drive versions.
If you don't feel like forking out the dough for a copy of Windows, your next best bet is Ubuntu or another Linux-based operating system. A Linux-based OS is capable of running basically anything you can run on Windows, only it's entirely free and open source. Games without Linux ports will have to be ran through a program like Wine, but it's ultimately a small inconvenience for a free OS.
When it comes to actually installing your OS, you basically have 2 options. Option 1 is to install it from a disc using an optical drive or via a retail USB flash drive. Option 2 is to create your own bootable flash drive which you can find decent instructions on here, you would really only need to do option 2 if you're going with Linux.
The USB option will install faster but costs a bit more if you're buying Windows, and the disc option requires an optical drive if you don't currently have one. Both have their pros and cons, it just depends on what works best for you!
If this is the absolute first gaming PC you’ve ever owned, then you probably don’t have a very good keyboard / mouse, or maybe your monitor is sub-par to really enjoy the experience this build is capable of.
Whatever it is you're missing, you'll definitely want the basics at the very least, just to make sure that you're getting the absolute most out of your new PC.
Luckily for you, I've hand-picked some awesome peripherals to cover each of the basic PC gaming needs, just check them out below!
Picking out parts like your desk and chair are also crucial to achieving the best possible gaming experience. That's why I've put together a buyers guide cover the 16 absolute best gaming chairs out there! Check it out!
Because the motherboard included in this build doesn’t come with any kind of on board WiFi, most don't, if you have to use WiFi then you’re going to need an adapter.
There are tons of options when it comes to picking WiFi adapters and it can be a relatively confusing process without knowing what you need. First you should determine what kind of router you have, does it support 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands, or just 2.4GHz?
If it supports both, you will probably want an AC adapter to take advantage of the 5GHz band which is much better for gaming than 2.4GHz; but, if your router only supports 2.4GHz then you'll be fine with an N adapter. There are always numbers following the AC and N classifications, these numbers tell you the maximum speed (in Mbps) that the adapter or router can transfer data at.
Keep in mind that your router and WiFi adapter can't speed up your internet connection and going for the highest numbers won't mean the lowest ping. Even N900 (basic) WiFi adapters and routers are capable of transferring data at much higher rates than the average internet connection requires.
As you can see, for right around $600 you'll be able to run (almost) any game on high settings in 1080p without breaking a sweat. The 8GB RX 580 is a powerhouse and it's definitely going to leave you in awe. Titles like GTA: V, Battlefield V, The Witcher 3, PUBG, Fortnite, and basically anything else will all run amazingly at 60fps+ in 1080p. However, Red Dead Redemption 2 may require a mix of medium-high settings.
Building a gaming PC on the cheaper end of things should mean that you're creating a solid foundation, and this build is just that - a solid place to start. But, that doesn't mean you won't be able to use it for a long time, because a build like this will easily last a couple of years before it really starts to fall behind.
All-in-all, you really couldn't hope for a better gaming PC for around $600, I know it's a little over the budget but the performance here is definitely worth it!
If you have any questions or comments about this build, don't hesitate to ask in the comments!