Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Building a new system? Need help choosing between parts? Then step in and let our trained gerbils assist you.

Moderator: JustAnEngineer

Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Mon Nov 18, 2013 5:10 pm

Hi everyone - I have been reading different posts and i want to make sure i get updated components. Its been a few years since I built my computer and my friend asked that I help him build a computer for his 13-17 year old teenage boys. They mainly play online games, so I am not sure how powerful of a computer that you need for that. Can anyone recommend components, but keep it under $500? I have only ever used AMD processor's, but I don't care either way. Thanks Again

We do need an OS system as well, I can probably give them one of my old monitors to save them money to begin with and with an operating system it will add another $100, so I could probably talk them into 500- 600....
rockhead21784
Gerbil In Training
 
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2009 12:49 pm

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Mon Nov 18, 2013 8:31 pm

Hi, Rockhead.

Have you looked at the System Guide?

The Econobox is a reasonable starting point.
Here's a more powerful combo deal for $607 -20MIR with free shipping at Newegg (including a quad-core Haswell Core i5 vs. the hyper-threaded dual-core Haswell Core i3 in the Econobox). The GeForce GTX650Ti-Boost SuperClocked graphics card in this combo provides similar performance to the stock-clocked Radeon HD7850 in the Econobox.

If those are too much, one of the least expensive options for a gaming PC that I can recommend is a refurbished or scratched-and-dented XPS 8700 from the Dell Outlet with the addition of a decent graphics card from Newegg or Amazon.
i7-4770K, H70, Gryphon Z87, 16 GiB, R9-290, SSD, 2 HD, Blu-ray, SB ZX, TJ08-E, SS-660XP², 3007WFP+2001FP, RK-9000BR, MX518
JustAnEngineer
Gerbil God
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 15440
Joined: Sat Jan 26, 2002 7:00 pm
Location: The Heart of Dixie

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Mon Nov 18, 2013 9:28 pm

MMOGs have really low requirements--if you're on a tight budget and/or don't care about maximum display settings you could probably get away with an AMD APU. My personal recommendation would be to spend a little bit more and build a system around an Intel i5 because PCs don't get old like they used to and a solid quad-core will last a very, very long time. Doing so will add around 75 bucks to the overall price. If you have a Microcenter nearby, buy the CPU there because they have crazy deals.

Get a cheap mATX motherboard. They won't be overclocking or using any fancy features. Asus, ASRock, Gigabyte and MSI are all reliable brands.

Newegg is selling a Radeon 7850 for $110 after rebate which is the best deal you can get on a midrange GPU, period. It's likely more horsepower than they need but the $70-100 choices aren't that great.

Scrounge your pockets and/or call a friend for some secondhand DDR3. This is a crappy time to be needing to buy memory especially if you're on a budget. If that's not an option, I recommend buying a single 4GB stick of 1600; it should be enough to limp along and a single stick means you can easily add more later.

Online retailers often run hard drives and PSUs as daily deals so if you have a couple of weeks to plan this you should be able to get a bargain. Minimum should be 500GB HD and 400W PSU. Newegg has the latter for $30 after rebate today.
NovusBogus
Gerbil Elite
 
Posts: 518
Joined: Sun Jan 06, 2013 12:37 am

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Mon Nov 18, 2013 9:46 pm

Last edited by ronch on Mon Nov 18, 2013 9:53 pm, edited 3 times in total.
The three pillars of my digital life: AMD FX-8350, Google Nexus 7 (Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro), Intel Core i5-2450M
ronch
Gerbil Elite
 
Posts: 657
Joined: Mon Apr 06, 2009 7:55 am
Location: C:\Program Files\

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Mon Nov 18, 2013 9:46 pm

.
Last edited by clone on Tue Jan 14, 2014 2:20 am, edited 3 times in total.
neg
clone
Gerbil Elite
 
Posts: 900
Joined: Mon Mar 12, 2007 10:40 am

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Mon Nov 18, 2013 9:54 pm

@Clone.. sorry bro. Got it wrong. Fixed it now. Also changed the mobo for something a bit better, bringing the total just $10 more.
The three pillars of my digital life: AMD FX-8350, Google Nexus 7 (Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro), Intel Core i5-2450M
ronch
Gerbil Elite
 
Posts: 657
Joined: Mon Apr 06, 2009 7:55 am
Location: C:\Program Files\

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Mon Nov 18, 2013 10:01 pm

A4-5300?

Ouch. If you can manage quad core you'll be a lot better off

That Haswell build combo deal mentioned would last a lot longer.
Meow.
Savyg
Gerbil Elite
Silver subscriber
 
 
Posts: 643
Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2004 6:18 am
Location: Between desert and tundra

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Tue Nov 19, 2013 12:31 am

You may want to consider buying used off of forums like TR, Anandtech, or overclockers.com, (if you have access) Techpowerup, from people who have good trading reputations (heatware). Whenever I do I like to search their post history to make sure they didn't rape the hardware with a crazy overclock or anything. You can get a HELL of a lot more for your dollar that way by picking up people's upgrades. For CPU+mobo at least I'd say that's the way to go (CPU especially), memory too if you'll only run it at stock, and if you don't want the latest, GPUs can be found pretty cheap.
MadManOriginal
Graphmaster Gerbil
 
Posts: 1431
Joined: Wed Jan 30, 2002 7:00 pm
Location: In my head...

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Tue Nov 19, 2013 10:11 am

Thanks everyone....I will look this over and see what I can come up with.
rockhead21784
Gerbil In Training
 
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2009 12:49 pm

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Wed Nov 20, 2013 3:28 am

.
Last edited by clone on Tue Jan 14, 2014 2:20 am, edited 1 time in total.
neg
clone
Gerbil Elite
 
Posts: 900
Joined: Mon Mar 12, 2007 10:40 am

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Wed Nov 20, 2013 7:20 am

I would say that you need an HD7790 with that budget.
Get 8GB of DDR3 1600 and then see how much processor you can buy with your remaining budget.

Your shopping list should be:

Micro ATX case (will be cheaper and use cheaper motherboards)
400-500W 80+ Bronze Power supply
8GB CL9 1.5V 1600MHz DDR3 as a 2x4GB kit
The best processor you can afford in the budget. i3 or FX 6xxx seems realistic
Micro ATX motherboard to fit whatever processor you get. Aim for all-solid caps from Asus/Asrock/Gigabyte/MSI
An HD7790 graphics card, unless you find a 7850 cheaper on clearance discount
Any 7200rpm hard drive. I think a 120GB SSD will be too small by itself and you can't afford two drives.
DVD drive is optional.
Windows 8.1, no matter how much I hate it, is the OS you'll want for future gaming.
<insert large, flashing, epileptic-fit-inducing signature (based on the latest internet-meme) here>
Chrispy_
Gerbil Jedi
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 1884
Joined: Fri Apr 09, 2004 3:49 pm

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Wed Nov 20, 2013 8:05 am

I'm seeing numerous X58 boards with i7 920 chips going up for sale at Anandtech and Hardforum, with the prices around $200 for that combo. That is a lot of power for the price, and I'd definitely look into these as an option. Only downside is they are selling quite fast, so you do need to negotiate a deal rather than take your time looking for the best prices at online vendors.
Intel i5 2500K@4.3, Gigabyte Z68XP-UD3-iSSD, Zotax GTX580, 2x WD Caviar Black 1TB (RAID-0), Thermaltake Level 10 GT Snow Ed, Corsair H80, Win 7 Pro
Walkintarget
Gerbil Team Leader
 
Posts: 226
Joined: Tue Jan 29, 2008 10:15 am

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Wed Nov 20, 2013 9:21 am

Well newegg has a 4 decent nice combo deals that only need a OS.
I am pretty sure the family you are building it for can get a student price on a OEM copt of window7 64bit or 8.1 whatever is cheaper.

There are 2 haswell systems with I5-4430 3.0ghz systems bit with only 4GB of ram one has a ASUS motherboard with aAsus gtx 650ti NON BOOST for $588.49 http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboBund ... bo.1413489
The other Haswell system also has the I5-4430 CPU with a EVGA 650ti NON BOOST for $545.49
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboBund ... bo.1430436

All the systems come with a single stick of memory. It will cost $36 to get another stick of drr3 1600 for the haswell systems so dual channel memory works.
The other 2 systems have single 8gb sticks. The AMD system will cost 75.99 to add another 8 gb stick of 1866 gskill memory. The ivy Bridge system will cost $78 bucks for another stick of 8gb gskill memory.


One is AMD FX-8350 based with a MSI HD7850 2gb for $610.99 but has no CD drive. http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboBund ... bo.1492556

Another system is a Ivy bridge Intel I5-3350p 3.1-3.3ghz CPU and a MSI 1gb gtx 650ti boost card. this system comes with a cd-drive. I think this system has a nicer case with 3 120mm spinners. front, rear and top. But the top one can be put in the side panel as a intake that is a much better configuration then a top exhaust fan plus it helps cool the GPU and CPU along with the motherboard chipset and VRMs. $608.49 http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboBund ... bo.1453605

I think I would definitely go with the cheaper Haswell based machines at the top Plus it will only cost $36 to enable dual channel memory and a total of 8gb of memory is fine. 16gb is a little overkill more so when it will cost 76$ + just to get dual channel working. but I think the Intel systems will run better on a single channel then the AMD system.

But the best performing system for gaming "as is"would be the last one I listed. The Ivy bridge with the 650ti boost card that is much faster then a regular non boost 650 card. Too bad they do not have the IVY system paired with the MSI hd 7850 2gb card.
2600k HT on@4705mhz 8gb Cas9 1600 mem 2x EVGA GTX770 4gb Classified cards in SLI @1320 mhz core and 2003 mhz mem,mounted in CM HAF922 with a TX-850 PSU 2xHTPC's 2xi3 2120 3.3ghz dual core,1xasus LP HD6570 1xHIS hd7750@1150core1325mem,55"PanyVT30
vargis14
Graphmaster Gerbil
 
Posts: 1194
Joined: Fri Aug 20, 2010 6:03 pm
Location: philly suburbs

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Wed Nov 20, 2013 10:30 am

Savyg wrote:A4-5300?

Ouch. If you can manage quad core you'll be a lot better off.


I think, if we're sticking with the specs I posted here, spending just about a hundred more on an A10-6800K instead of this A4 will make a huge difference.
The three pillars of my digital life: AMD FX-8350, Google Nexus 7 (Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro), Intel Core i5-2450M
ronch
Gerbil Elite
 
Posts: 657
Joined: Mon Apr 06, 2009 7:55 am
Location: C:\Program Files\

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Wed Nov 20, 2013 11:06 am

I think I'd take my chances on a Pentium dual core and a 7770 pairing over a similarly priced A10 APU for gaming any day. Plus, you can upgrade the Pentium to an i5 or i7 down the road for a nice upgrade. I don't support the Pentium unless the budget doesn't allow for anything better, just making a comparison to an APU-only choice. A quad core A8 with a dGPU is a whole other story that I would support.
IMO, APUs are great if you want 4 cores for $100, or if you're building a mITX htpc with light gaming duties. That's about the extent of their appeal.

I recently bought a 7750 (DDR3 version) for $31 after MIR that churned out 48 fps in DiRT Showdown. When I removed the dGPU from my A8-5600k htpc, frame rates dropped to 28fps.
Last edited by DPete27 on Wed Nov 20, 2013 11:21 am, edited 2 times in total.
i5-3570K, ASRock Z77 Pro4-m, Asus GTX660 TOP, 120 GB Vertex 3 Max IOPS, 2 TB Samsung EcoGreen F4, 8GB G-Skill @1.25V, Silverstone PS07B
DPete27
Gerbil Jedi
Silver subscriber
 
 
Posts: 1665
Joined: Wed Jan 26, 2011 12:50 pm
Location: Madison, Wisconsin

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Wed Nov 20, 2013 11:14 am

I'd split the difference between the A4 and the A10 and go with an A8. Here's a system (no monitor/keyboard/mouse/speakers) for $506. If you're giving them a spare monitor then this would be my route:

If you prefer Newegg:

A8-6600K (quad core, better graphics): http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6819113333
FM2+ Asrock A88X motherboard: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6813157465
8GB (2x4GB) Kingston HyperX (Don't skimp on RAM when using an iGPU): http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6820104360
CM Force 500 PSU/case combo: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6811119270
Windows 8.1 OEM: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6832416776
COMBO: ASUS DVD-RW and 1TB WD Blue 7200RPM drive: http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDeal ... bo.1482800
=$507 + free 3-day shipping.

At Amazon you can do this:

A8-6600K (same CPU): http://www.amazon.com/AMD-A8-6600K-Quad ... 00CPLGGWS/
Gigabyte FM2+ A88X motherboard: http://www.amazon.com/Gigabyte-A88X-Bol ... 00FYKNFFS/
Crucial Ballistix Sport 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3-1600: http://www.amazon.com/Crucial-Ballistix ... 006WAGGUK/
ASUS DVD-RW: http://www.amazon.com/ASUS-DRW-24F1ST-S ... 00D2CO8WO/
WD Blue 1TB: http://www.amazon.com/WD-Blue-Desktop-H ... 0088PUEPK/
CM Elite 350 with 500W PSU: http://www.amazon.com/Cooler-Master-Eli ... 003O2KEPC/
Windows 8.1 OEM: http://www.amazon.com/Windows-8-1-Syste ... 00F3ZN2W0/
= $505 plus free super-saver shipping

Basically the same system and the same price. I went with a nicer mobo on Amazon, and the DVD-RW/HDD were not in a combo, but either one is a pretty good setup for $500. Both are upgradeable with FM2+ CPUs if the next APUs turn out to be awesome.

edit: DPete has a decent idea as well. The penitum is probably plenty fast, and if you can find a similar deal on a 7750 it's probably better. I think you'll have to go closer to $550-560 though.
I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do, I do not do. But what I hate, I do.
derFunkenstein
Gerbil God
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 21360
Joined: Fri Feb 21, 2003 9:13 pm
Location: WHAT?

Re: Budget gaming PC for under $500 - for friends kids

Postposted on Wed Nov 20, 2013 11:54 am

I think a discrete GPU is the way to go for a "gaming" rig. I am running a 7790 and Ivy Bridge Celeron in my HTPC; it performs pretty well in most games, even at 1080p. Although the details are turned down a bit. I also would recommend a USB XBOX 360 controller.
gigafinger
Gerbil
Silver subscriber
 
 
Posts: 47
Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2012 8:53 am
Location: Derry, NH


Return to System Builders Anonymous

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: paulocris and 2 guests