Building a cheap $300 Gaming PC
You know that making a PC is difficult. We are making a gaming PC.
We are using branded and internationally acclaimed parts. This will be a $300 gaming PC and ready to play present games.
It will have fantastic upgrading options. All this is possible because of its special processing AMD chip. As I said upgrading options of this $300 build is so fantastic that you will enjoy upgrading it to. We will discuss about it later.
Let’s start with the spirit of the build that is the processor. I am using AMD A8 7600 based on Kaveri architecture. It has 10 computer cores, 6 are dedicated to GPU and 4 are dedicated to CPU.
A8 almost equal in performance with Intel i3 4330. Its single thread is slower than i3 but GPU is much faster than i3 and even more impressive than its big brother A10 7800.
AMD A8 is available at $76 on Amazon.
Now let’s talk about A8 7600. It is not a CPU but an APU, Accelerated Processing Unit. APU consists of GPU and CPU. This has total 10 computer cores, 4 are dedicated to CPU and 6 are dedicated to GPU.
It is a graphic card and a CPU on a single chip, that’s one of the reasons I love about AMD, Savior of poor. These chips are for cheap gaming and they start losing their value in higher builds.
Truth is that, the entry level graphic cards are simply useless today. They don’t provide performance for their price, so for this market AMD had manufactured this A-series chips with CPU and GPU on it.
Although predecessors of A-series were not that powerful but today with Kaveri architecture they are forced to be reckoned.
And at this price, it provides a 4 cores CPU with decent onboard graphics. Comparison to i3 which has 2 cores and a little costlier than A8-7600, i3 performs a little better than A8-7600. Single thread of i3 is faster but equal to A8 because A8 has extra cores. When comparing the graphics, guys A8-7600 performs much better than i3.
Next we should move on to motherboard. As our AMD A8 7600 uses FM 2+ socket. I am choosing a FM 2+ socket motherboard: Asus A68HM-K which supports DDR3 RAM with speeds of about 2400 megahertz and it is available at $64 on Amazon.
For RAM I am going with Corsair 4GB DDR3 with speed of 1600 megahertz. Now guys we are choosing a 1600 megahertz RAM for a very special reason.
Faster the RAM = Faster the APU (processor)
But then why we are using 1600 megahertz RAM why not move to faster RAM. When you upgrade, which I am sure you will if you build this Gaming PC yourself, the RAM speed above 1600 megahertz is useless as the graphic card which has its own faster RAM. Like GTX 750 Ti etc. are using DDR5 and your PC build DDR3, so obviously that will be more faster and the system will use that RAM. Also, your branded power supply can let you over-clock cards like 750 Ti without any fear. These are more efficient, safe and let you over-clock comfortably.
This RAM is available at a price of $35 on Amazon.
Now let’s discuss the storage. I am selecting WD Blue 1 TB with a speed of 7200 RPM. It is a best seller on Amazon. Just for the sake of saving few $$ dollars you should not go with 500GB memory instead choose this 1TB Blue Western Digital and this at a price of $49 on Amazon.
Now we have to power these components and for that I am choosing the power supply of Cooler Master CM 350 Plus which can supply maximum of 350 W. Using a branded power supply is very important guys. It will come in handy when we upgrade. It comes at a very cheap price of $30 on Amazon.
ForCabinet, I am going with Deepcool Tesseract. Now guys this is a very beautiful branded case with LED lights and two fans. I could have chosen cheap $20 cabinet but I managed it in the budget as it is the main component of PC which doesn’t let your cheap PC look cheap. A little costly for this build because it is at $59 on Amazon.
How we are going to upgrade this?? We all know that we are not going to use $300 PC for the next 5 years, so what are the upgrade options?
First upgrade must be the RAM. We must use the same identical RAM which we have used in this build, that is Corsair 1600 megahertz otherwise some issues may arise. If you’re going to use another brand there can be some issues which cannot be detected. Play safe and use the same brand same RAM size.
Now guys you can start playing games at 1080p at low settings and can get up to around 30 FPS. Few games will drop below 30 FPS, so for that you can change settings to 720p. Most games till 2014 will run very smoothly providing around 40 to 50 FPS with medium settings.
But now the real fun starts, the graphics on this chip is basically Radeon R7 graphics.
Cards like R7-250 are based same architecture. So R7-250 can join forces with A8-7600 graphics in dual graphics or crossfire together and they can boost FPS. This will give you a better gaming experience as I believe entry level graphic cards are useless like R7-250. These don’t perform for their cost then why are we talking about it here. We are talking about here because R7-250 performs with A8-7600 as they are compatible.
Also, your Gaming PC can run games on its own without dedicated graphic card. Now take your time and research for a second hand R7-250 which you can get real cheap.
Additionally, this APU can support medium level graphic card after attaching cards like GTX750 TI and Radeon 260 X. Your gaming rig is complete now. It will start giving 100 FPS at low settings and 50 FPS at higher settings. Try to get them second hand as they are sold and bought most frequently.
Also, this cheap $300 PC can support upto GTX 950 or 960, but when you are upgrading to these big cards then consider SSDs because it will help in increasing performance. Now GTX 950 and 960 can bottleneck in some games, but in games which they can perform I bet you will see the power of 950 and 960 in your PC. I am talking about Ultra setting 1080p gaming at comfortable FPS varying from 30fps to 60fps and above also.
The beauty of this PC is that you are not dependent on a graphic card. Your APU(CPU+GPU) can provide that power so you can play without a graphic card. Unlike other processors like Intel I series or AMD FX series which are constantly dependent on a graphic card.
In that mean time search for a second hand option as your PCI Express Slot is empty, you can experiment with it.
So guys this is a cheap gaming PC under the budget of $300 and has ability to turn into a gaming beast when you upgrade it. It has all the branded parts looks beautiful and has many upgradeable options. All the affiliated links to all the components are below:
If you have any questions feel free to ask. Share your views about this build. We will also do a $500 gaming PC build soon.
Next post will cover-