One of the biggest misconception when constructing a computer,in particularly a gaming machine is you need to spend a lot of money in hardware to get peak performance from your machine. In actuality you don't, as hardware get better with time prices are also getting much cheaper. Today it is quite possible to construct a PC that gives you high performance at just $600. If want to build a gaming PC and have it perform well I strongly recommend you spend more than $600,try $1200.
In my latest installment of "Build a $1200 gaming PC" build guide I will pick some of the best quality components for your gaming rig. It will be built last yet at the same time it will be powerful. These parts will be high grade, and its performance will rival that of any expensive gaming rig on the market.
This PC will most definitely run the latest graphic intense gaming titles out there, at full high-end settings 1080p and 60fps. No kidding,I'm that much confident this PC will hold up to every task that's thrown at it.
Before will begin this builders guide,I must remind you that building a PC is not a difficult task at all. The hardest part is gathering your hardware, and knowing each hardware's primary responsibility especially if you're a first time builder.
Here's my recommended list parts for this PC build guide 2015.
The Processor: Intel Core i5-4690K
If not the Core i7 why not the next best choice and that is the Intel Core i5-460K. Very reasonable price option,yet it can hold up with the big boys when it comes down to intense gaming,video editing etc. Definitely can overclock this processor for peak gaming performance.
Price Point: $199 @MicronCenter
The Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z977X-UD3H (Black Edition)
Shopping for a motherboard is not the hard part,its finding components that's compatible with the motherboard has always been a challenging task for me. Its imperative that you carefully do your research and know what you're getting when shopping for a motherboard . Good news, you don't have to pay $300 for a good quality motherboard. There are some damn good motherboards on the market that are very reasonable in price.
That's why I choose this Gigabyte GA-Z977X-UD3H motherboard. Very reasonable in price,yet can handle that same heavy duty task like the expensive big boys.
It supports AMD Crossfire and 2-Way NVIDIA SLI technology,2 x PCIe 3.0 x 16 Slots. Four memory slots with a 32GB Max capacity. It has 4-USB 3.0 ports and has 6 SATA 3 ports. Most important features on this motherboard I think is On board M2 storage technology.
Price Point: $139 @Amazon
The Memory: Corsair Vengeance Pro 1866 MHz (16GB)
Lot of the tech websites and hardware pundits like myself will agree that the Vengeance Pro is the best DDR3 memory you can purchase and is very reasonable price,which is always the case with RAM sticks nowadays. This piece of hardware has a 1866MHz clock speed which adds up to very fast memory. This is the best choice for the computer build in my opinion.
Price Point: $139 @Amazon
The Graphic Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 970
In my experience in building computers and I built plenty,when staying within budget often times the most expensive piece of hardware is the graphic card. With this build the EVGA GeForce GTX 970 is the most priciest hardware we have so far at $328 .
You don't always have to spend $500 or more graphic card to get that great gaming experience. This particular graphic card runs just like the high-end option,its super fast,it is overclock ability,and it delivers 1080p,60 fps video. The GeForce GTX 970 can handle some the top gaming titles that's out and beyond.
Price Point: $330 @Amazon
Main Drive: Samsung 850 EVO 250GB
Solid state drives are fast,in fact once you go SSD you'll never go back. Even better,SSD's are also rapidly coming down in price. Samsung in my opinion,just my opinion only make some of the best SSD's on the market. I would say almost every single builder around the planet has a Samsung 850 EVO included in their PC build.
Price Point: $115 @Amazon
Secondary Drive: Seagate SV35 2TB 7,200RPM Hard Drive
Every gaming desktop computer that's built today all have one thing in common,they have a SSD as there primary drive and a secondary drive for added extra storage for games,music and video files and photos. For this build we're going with the 2TB Seagate SV35 7,200rpm hard drive.
You can't go wrong with Seagate,they never crap out on you, it can handle all types ruggedness and yet maintain its stable operation, and it last a long time.
Price Point: $ 100 @Micro Center
Cooling The CPU: Cooler Master Hype 212 EVO
If we were using a Intel Core i7 processor and was doing any overclocking I would definitely use a water cool solution as those processors have the tendency to get very toasty. For this build though we're going with the Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO which comes with a 120mm PWM fan. This CPU cooler is great at provided balance between high and low speed operation. More importantly it can handle a overclocking processor and its insanely cheap. Keep in mind this is a very huge CPU cooler so you're going to need a nice roomy case to accommodate this cooler.
Price Point: $35 @Newegg
The Case: Corsair Obsidian Series 750D
Now we're going to need a nice size roomy case to house all of this amazing hardware we just purchased. For this build lets go with the Corsair Obsidian Series 750D. It has everything you can ask for in a computer case,its nice and compact,with a sleek sharp design, and if you been a frequent reader of my website,you know I love all things compact.
This case has enough room to fit at least 3 graphic cards,count em again,three, it can also can accommodate radiator and fan combination. Another important feature present are two modular drive cages that can house 3.5" or 2.5" drives and it also has four tool free dedicated SSD cages.
Price Point: $140 @Amazon
The Power Supply: Corsair CX Series 850 Watts (Bronze 80 Plus)
The power up this new computer build we're going to need a power supply that has at least 600 Watts of power, you don't really need overkill in wattage, but we need enough juice to power up all of this impressive hardware we've put together. Even with heavy usage,all my computers have a 750 Watt power supply installed,there is no need for a 1000 Watt power supply unless you're using three graphic cards and running RAID storage configuration. Good news,power supplies these have dropped immensely in price, they're an absolute steal.
For this computer lets go with the Corsair CX Series 850 Watts modular power supply. Guarantee it will give us more than enough power for this overclock capable machine. Always when buying or shopping for a power supply make sure it has decent power efficiency rating, in the case of the Corsair CX Series, it has a 80 Bronze Plus rating.
Price Point: $109 @Amazon
The Disc Drive: Asus 24
Not to long ago every computer had to have a BluRay/DVD combo disc drive. With video content like movies and TV shows being streamed online,who needs a disc for media content, I mean when was the last time actually burn music to a CD. The only thing you really need a disc to do is load up your operating system for installation,that's it. Other than that you'll probably use your DVD combo drive 2 times a year.
For this build,go with the best, the Asus 24x comb drive.
Price Point: $21 @Amazon
Grand Total: $1327 a $127 over budget.
So why the over budget?
The over budget definitely was due to excessive spending on the computer case. It was rather hard trying to find the perfect computer case for this build,most of the cases didn't meet my requirements,they were either to small,or had no DVD drive bay. So I went with the Corsair Obsidian 750D which cost $140.