This gaming PC is a tough competition to next generation consoles. For 400 dollars, you can build a decent PC if you choose the best possible components available right now. This PC is for gaming at 1080p and will give you more than 40 fps on an average on high-ultra settings in most of the games easily.
If you are planning to buy a pre-built PC then I recommend you to skip that step and buy components individually, build your own PC and you could be able to play all of your favorite games without any stutter. I update these builds time to time whenever a new opportunity comes in the market so you can get the most our of your system.
I have made this PC upgradable as much as possible and you will be able to replace any of its components easily in the future. I call it “THE MASTER” Build.
If you want to learn how to build a gaming PC from scratch you can get my guide from Here.
Intel Pentium G4500
With a lot of difference in prices, I had to go with the Pentium G4500 which is right now costing under $70 at the time of update. The other Pentiums like G3258, G4560 are either not available or are too much overpriced making it difficult for me to keep the overall PC budget under $400. If I choose a Pentium G4600 or G4560, then it won’t be possible to invest money to get the best GPU. This processor is also used in my $300 build which you can check right now.
For gaming, a dual core processor is a minimum you should buy and this one will do the best job. It’s a skylake processor which has 2 cores and 3mb of cache memory enough for casual games as well as basic tasks for windows. It can run any game when combined with a good budget graphics card at 1080p medium-high settings. But in games like GTA V, witcher 3 and other CPU intensive games, don’t expect to get performance equal to an i5. But it will be still enough for providing you decent frames.
This processor has a core clock of 3.5Ghz and is locked. So you can’t overclock it unlike the Pentium G3258 but it will give similar performance as shown my many benchmarks videos on youtube. Also with 47 watts of TDP, it’s very power efficient and your whole PC won’t require more than 400 watts of reliable power supply to power the whole rig. I consider this processor as one of the best budget processors for the money.
I have also used it in my $400 gaming build because it’s cheap and provides the decent gaming experience on a tight budget. With entry level graphics cards, this one wins over many processors that come under $100.
Gigabyte Micro ATX H110M-A
Getting a decent motherboard for this build is easy right now as a variety of motherboards with LGA 1151 socket are available for a cheap price. There are motherboards from manufacturers like ASRock which also provide fine motherboards, but for just a couple of bucks, gigabyte will provide you the most reliable motherboards that are durable and are bought the most by the budget gamers community.
My main focus was to choose a motherboard that will support all the components like GPU, CPU, RAM, HDD etc. and also be able to upgraded to high end builds. This one supports all the skylake as well as kabylake motherboards from Intel Celerons to Intel core i7s. So in future, you probably do not have to worry about its compatibility with these CPUs. But as for the specs, it has 2xDIMM slots that support up to 32gb of memory clocked at 2133Mhz which is very basic.
There is one PCIEx16 slot for your graphics card, 2xPCIEx1 slots for sound/wifi cards. For storage, you have 4x SATA 3 ports that will support your hard drives as well as SSD’s and for cooling, you have an additional 4 pin power port for classy fan at the middle. For front ports, you will get the basic USB 2.0 header at the bottom and one USB 3.0 header on the right middle side of the motherboard.
This motherboard will be enough for locked processors like i3 7100/6100, i5 6400/7400 etc. but if you ever go with an unlocked processor in the future, you will be limited to overclocking. Well, that’s a totally different story that I am telling you for extra information but currently, this motherboard has everything that you need. If you want to know more about it or any other component in this list, you are always welcomed in the comment section.
Specs and Features:-
- CPU: LGA1151; Chipset: Intel H110 Express
- Memory: 2x DDR4-2133 DIMM Slots, Dual Channel, ECC, Non-ECC, Unbuffered, Max Capacity of 32GB
- Slots: 1x PCI-Express 3.0 x16 Slot, 2x PCI-Express 2.0 x1 Slots
- SATA: 4x SATA3 Ports
- Ports: 2x USB 3.0/2.0 Ports (2 rear, 2 via header), 4x USB 2.0, 1 x PS/2 Mouse Port, 1x PS/2 Keyboard Port, 1x HDMI Port, 1x RJ45 LAN Port, Audio I/O Jacks
- Form Factor: MicroATX
Crucial Ballistix Sport 4gb DDR4
I have used a single stick of 4 gigabytes of memory from Crucial Ballistix. 4gb is the minimum and you may suffer some stutter especially in games like battlefield 4 and Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor. but still, in most of the games, 4gb of ram is enough for running any casual game at any resolution.
This memory is clocked at 2400Mhz which is pretty fast but as the motherboard, we are using in this build is capable of running memory at 2133Mhz, it will be automatically downclocked to 2133Mhz. But the reason behind not going with the Kingston HyperX 2133Mhz memory is the price which is more than $35 per 4gb right now.
The stick has aluminium heat spreader on it which eliminates heat when you do overclock or heavy gaming. You will also get a limited lifetime warranty with this ram and you will be able to add another 4gb stick in another DIMM slot as the motherboard we chose has 2 DIMM slots.
EVGA Gtx 1050 ti 4gb SC gaming Edition
This is the graphics card which you need to play all the games at 1080p on high settings. It’s almost equivalent to the previous generation graphics card which was Gtx 960 although it’s much more cheaper than that. This graphics card doesn’t need any external power connector and draws the power from the PCIE slot of the motherboard which makes your rig more power efficient and eliminates the condition of buying a 500w or a 600w power supply.
The EVGA edition is clocked at 1354Mhz and has a boost clock of 1468Mhz. As it’s a factory overclocked card, you will get some more performance than the usual Gtx 1050 ti.
This card has 4gb of Gddr5 memory enough to play games such as GTA V or The witcher 3 with high textures. Previously I used the Gtx 1050 2gb which wasn’t that good as it is. This card will be able to provide you 50-60fps in almost every game at 1080p high settings. Some of the older games like Battlefield 4, Bioshock infinite will have no problem running on 1080p ultra with 60 fps. But newer games will require you to play on high settings if you want buttery smooth gameplay.
This card is faster than theAMD’ss RX 460 4gb edition and falls between the RX 460 and RX 470. But combined with the Pentium G3258, it’s a great match for any entry level build and will be not be bottlenecked by the processor.
- CUDA Cores: 768
- Base Clock: 1354 MHz / Boost Clock: 1468 MHz
- VRAM: 4gb Gddr5
- Memory Bit Width 128 Bit
- Recommended PSU: 350W or greater power supply
Western Digital 1TB
As games are becoming huge, you need a good storage size. 1Tb of storage will be enough for you to store the games setup as well as installed files. You will be able to store all of your applications, movies etc without worrying about space. Games like GTA V and The Witcher 3 are really huge and a few games like can easily fill up hard drives with 320gb or 500gb size.
EVGA 430 watts 80+
When it comes to power supply, a lot of people buy cheap power supply saying that they don’t have a high-end graphics card and it will handle all the components easily. But NO! it is really important to buy a power supply from a trusted and reliable brand. EVGA provides very good power supplies at all budgets and in different wattage.
This one is 430 watts and is enough for this build. You don’t need more than that as it can handle all of your components and a few more components can also be added. Moreover, it is 80+ which means it will give at least 84% of power efficiency at full load and up to 87% at 50% load. This power supply has every power cable that you would need in order to power all the components. With this power supply, you will also get 3 years of warranty.
This rig will never exceed 200 watts even if you overclock your CPU as well as your graphics card. As the graphics card, I have used doesn’t require any external power cable, it will draw the power from the PCI slot of the motherboard itself. This makes it a very power efficient rig.
VIVO ATX Mid Tower
For easy upgradability and more space, I chose a mid tower from VIVO. It supports Mini-ITX, Micro-ATX and ATX motherboards. As we have a micro ATX motherboard in this build, it will be easy to install it and we will get a lot of space inside it.
The case has 1 x 120mm pre-installed fan at the front which works as intake cooling fan and the side panel has 2x120mm fan ports more so you can install more fans if you want. The case has a good cable management feature by which you can take your PSU’s cables from the back to the front through the holes provided in the motherboard mounting platform which will make the build neat and clean.
It supports graphics cards long up to 345mm which is equal to 13.5 inches and our graphics card which is Gtx 1050 ti will fit easily. If you have any doubts regarding this case or any other component in this build, then feel free to ask as many times as you want to in the comment section.
- Multiple Fan Mounts: 1 front 120mm blue LED fan (Included), 2 side 120mm fan ports, 1 rear 80mm fan port
- (x1)USB 3.0 and (x2)USB 2.0 front ports
- (x7) Expansion Slots
- VGA Card Length up to 345mm, CPU Cooler Height up to 160mm
- Filtered Front Ventilation and Internal Cable Management
Alternate case: – Zalman ATX Mid Tower PC Case Z1 Neo