Build the ultimate $600 gaming PC in 2017

I have already written a post on gaming PC that you can build for $600 for the best gaming experience at 1080p. That build uses AMD components. But Am3+ processors and motherboards are older for now. Sure they are good for budget gaming builds but if you can afford the latest generation Intel Kaby lake processor and motherboard at the same price, there is no way going back to older generation.

In case you haven’t read my $600 gaming build article, you can check it right now and can compare with this Kaby lake build.

This PC is a solid gaming computer which can run any game on high-ultra settings at 1080p. The ddr4 memory and the best graphics card for $200 makes it a beast for 1080p gaming. You can check out my AMD based $600 build, if you want to.

As the prices of AMD AM4 motherboards are very high as compared to a simple LGA 1151 motherboard, the overall price will go over $650 which is not our target. So, it’s better to get an Intel budget processor than a Ryzen 5 processors because you will still get equivalent performance in gaming and it’s wiser to invest in a GPU more than in a CPU in a budget oriented build like this.

Without any further explanation let’s see what makes this build perfect for anything at this price.

If you don’t know how to assemble a gaming PC or want a complete guide for building a gaming PC from scratch you can grab my guide HERE.

Processor

Intel Pentium G4600

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Intel Pentium G4600

Intel Pentium G4600 is one of the best processor for gaming at this budget although for a $600 dollar build, you may find it ridiculous to not using an i5 anymore. The fact of not using a Core i5 is because of the increased price of Ram and graphics card because of which the total expense increases to $600. So, it’s better to stick with a good budget CPU like this which will not bottleneck any budget or mid-end graphics card.

You may also ask why I did not used an i3 7100 and it’s because that processor costs around $25 more but has almost same specs except a little higher clock and 1mb more cache on the i3 which doesn’t increase the fps in games significantly. Instead, we will try to use that $25 for a better cause for this build which you will see later in this post.

This is a dual core hyperthreaded CPU with 4 threads and acts as an i3 and performs very good with almost every mid-end graphics card. It comes under $90 and can be fit into any LGA 1151 socket motherboard, be it cheap or expensive. In $500 gaming PC, I used the same processor as it helps to reduce the overall expense because of the fact that it’s locked and you can use any H110 chipset motherboard that generally comes around $50.


Motherboard

Gigabyte LGA 1151 GA-H110M-A

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Gigabyte GA-H110M-A motherboard

As we are using a locked Intel Pentium processor, we shouldn’t be wasting money on Z270 chipset motherboard. Pentiums are still great without overclocking and for a budget build like this even if you choose a Z270 motherboard it will really not matter because the performance in games will be the same.

This motherboard has a very basic chipset of H110 and has a micro-ATX form factor. As it’s compact it can be used in any mid tower or even in some mini towers like Rosewill FBM-01. If you want more information on the chipsets of LGA 1151 motherboards or want to buy some awesome mobo’s for your build then head to my article on Best LGA 1151 motherboards.

Now this motherboard has two DIMM slots which support up to 32Gb of ddr4 memories clocked up to 2133Mhz. It has one PCI-E x 16 slot for the graphics card and two PCI-X 1 slots for sound cards and LAN cards. This motherboard is very durable and has very simple easy to access bios for different hardware tweakings.

As it is very cheap, you won’t be getting a lot of USB 3.0 ports or a lot of SATA 3.0 ports but you will still get front headers for USB 3.0 and it will fulfil your needs to install every component. The only con I find in this motherboard is the absence of VGA and DVI ports. But as you will be using a graphics card for display, this con is no longer a real con for now.


Memory

G.SKILL Aegis 8GB DDR4

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G.SKILL Aegis 8GB DDR4

For memory, I chose a single stick of 8gb ddr4 memory which is clocked at 2133Mhz. As the motherboard supports memory clocked up to 2133Mhz, it’s the best match for this build. As the price of most of the DDR4 memories is more than $90. It’s better to choose this module which comes around $80 and will save some more bucks.

Every game available right now requires no more than 8gb to run smoothly. 8gb will be enough for every game at 1080p and if you want to upgrade you can use the second DIMM slot on the motherboard to increase the RAM up to 16GB.

As compared to the ddr3 memories, ddr4 are even faster and are clocked at higher frequencies. The power consumption is also lower than those ddr3 sticks i.e., 1.25V as compared to 1.5V. It makes ddr4 memories more powerful and more power efficient.


Graphics card

Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1060 Windforce OC 3GB

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Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1060 Windforce OC 3GB

I replaced the RX 480 4gb with the gtx 1060 3gb edition because the price of the latter is much lower and the performance is similar. Currently games like the Witcher 3, Shadow of Mordor, GTA V etc. can use up to 3-4gb of GPU memory and the GTX 1060 3gb will perform very well in these cases is performing almost equivalent to the RX 480 4gb in almost any game. So this time, the gtx 1060 3gb will be a better choice for this build because of the price to performance ratio. As the RX 580 is launched, the RX 480 has almost disappeared and the price of 580 is not less than $200 in any way.

The EVGA gtx 1060 3gb SC gaming edition is a single fan card which runs very silent and comes with a factory overclock of 1556Mhz and a boost clock of 1797Mhz. The card is capable of playing any game at 1080p ultra settings with 60+ fps. Combined with the Pentium G4600, it will perform almost up to its full potential as the processor is capable of handling any mid-end graphics card.

You can easily achieve around 100 fps in DOOM, 50-60 fps in the Witcher 3, 60+ fps in Bf1 and 60+ fps in GTA V. As for the power consumption it requires a single 6 pin power connector and will draw 120 watts max. So it’s much lower than that of RX 480 or RX 580. With the price around $200, it’s a must buy for a $600 build like this.

Also, see:-


Storage

Silicon Power 120GB SSD 

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Silicon Power 120GB SSD

For this build, I tried to save as much as money to make the budget for an SSD. Yes, SSD is difficult to get in a budget build like this but if you can manage then you can install your operating system in it and it will eliminate all your frustrations. This is a 120GB SSD from Silicon Power which is not as famous as Samsung or Kingston but it has very reliable SSD’s too which can contain all your softwares and drivers. You shouldn’t install games on it because games are big and you will run out of space. For storing other files you can use the hard drive listed below.

Western Digital Blue 1TB HDD

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WD Blue 1TB Desktop

For storage, you need at least a 1TB of a hard drive from a trusted company like Western Digital which provides two years of warranty. Now games are getting bigger and bigger and you don’t want to run out of space. Games like GTA V and Call of Duty Black Ops 3 require huge space. 20 games like that can fill your whole hard drive easily. So, better get at least 1 terabyte of storage and you can always add more hard drives to your system as the motherboard we used has 4 SATA ports.


Power supply

EVGA 500 W1 80+ 500Watts PSU

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EVGA 500

This PC uses a very power efficient graphics card as well as CPU so you can run it on a 500 watts power supply. 500 watts can supply power to every component and as this PC is not meant for overclocking, going with a higher wattage won’t help. It has all the power cables required to supply the power to your components. It’s 80+ W1 power supply and has power efficiency more than 82% on typical loads. Gaming PC’s which have power efficient components like the Kaby lake processor and ddr4 memories should also have an at least 80+ power efficient power supply.

This brand is very much trusted and I have used these power supplies in almost every build due to their huge success of protecting the components against overcurrent and overvoltage. The wattage is found out by calculating the total TDP of all the components and this system will not require more than 300 watts overall even if you overclock your graphics card. The graphics card I chose requires a single 6 pin power connector for power supply and this PSU is enough to provide that.


Case

Corsair Carbide Series 100R

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Corsair Carbide Series 100R mid tower

Now, this case comes to be just perfect for this build. I always chose case according to all of the components compatibility. It looks elegant and professional, neat and stealthy with a transparent side window to look at your components inside.

The front has two USB 3.0 ports which are a great advantage as the motherboard we chose is also having a front USB 3.0 header port. The case supports Mini-ITX, Micro-ATX and ATX motherboards so you have the choice to upgrade it further if you want to switch from the basic Micro ATX to a full ATX motherboard with a lot of PCI-e X 16 slots.

The case has 4 drive mounts which are tool-free to access easily and you can either use an HDD or an SSD according to your need without a screwdriver to mount the drives. The case also comes with up to 5 fan mounts including top, rear and front where you get a 120mm fan at the rear pre-installed which will be useful for more cooling in summer.

The case also has a good cable management feature and a lot of routeing holes for each and every cable which will make it look neat. The power supply will be mounted at the bottom which has a dust filter to stop the dust coming into the PSU if you chose to put the power supply with fan downwards.


TOTAL~$610(As of 6th Nov 17)

 


Recommended Peripherals for this build:-

Monitor: ViewSonic VA2446M –ViewSonic VA2446M: Check on Amazon

  • 24-Inch Full HD 1080p (1920x1080p) 16:9 LED Computer Monitor with DVI-D, and VGA Inputs. 
  • 10M:1 Dynamic Contrast Ratio; Two Built-In Speakers; Compatible with Mac, and Windows; ideal for both laptops and desktops; VESA mountable
  • 3-year Limited Warranty

Keyboard/Mouse: Redragon S101 Gaming Keyboard, M601 Mouse– Redragon S101 gaming Keyboard/M601 Mouse: Check on Amazon

  • Keyboard: RGB Illuminated Redragon Gaming Keyboard: 
  • Mouse: Ergonomic Redragon M601 Centrophorus Backlit Gaming Mouse 3200 DPI (1000/1600/2400/3200 4 level DPI adjustment)
  • 6 buttons, and an 8-piece weight tuning set (2.4g x 8). Durable smooth TEFLON feet and contoured body for ultimate gaming control. Quality ABS construction and two programmable side buttons

Wifi:TP-Link N300 TL-WN881ND– TP-Link TL-WN881ND wifi card: Check on Amazon

  • Easily setup a highly secured wireless link with WPS
  • Hassle-free installation
  • Seamlessly compatible with 802.11n/b/g products
  • Industry-leading 2-year warranty 

Have any doubts? Ask in the comments below

Sarfraz

I am an engineer and a certified Hitech computer technician who loves to play Tekken(Left CSGO). But this is not what else I love. I love to dive into the computer hardware and same goes for you. That’s why you are here! AND YES IGNORE MY BAD ENGLISH:)

  • Stockie

    Hi Sarfaz have been using your site for some guidance on builds as well as some others (shame on me lol), and am deciding to try for my first build and have selected some parts i wondered if you would take a look over. My build is slightly over the $600 threshold as i have included an SSD also for the OS. I have used Partpicker for the components but will purchase from Newegg UK. The total for the build is around the £480 mark or $694 if that makes it easier. As i said a little over $600 due ot added SSD. Partpicker link for the build is http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/hmn6vK any feedback or suggestions gratefully received 🙂

    • Although it’s fine but I suggest you to go with i5 as upgrading a CPU is not an easy task. You can always buy a SSD later. What’s more important is overall performance of your computer. SSD will only decrease loading time of windows and applications but you won’t get that much fast speed on i3 as you will get with i5. i5 will last you much longer. I also do the same.

  • Stockie

    Hi thanks for the quick response its much appreciated! Unfortunately my budget wont stretch that far. in uk the i5 6500 is almost twice the price of the i3 :(, but my old heap of junk pc is almost at an end so need a good solid pc to last me the next few years, will this suffice??

    • Well I think so. Because I too have an i3 and its working great.

  • Umer Saif

    bro which one is better for 1080p gaming Intel Skylake Core i5 6400 or intel i3 6100. intel i3 is also cheaper but tell me hows its performance??

    • i5 6400 is far better than i3 6100. You have two more real cores and those make difference. Although the fps will have less difference but the good deal is i5.

  • Umer Saif

    aoa brother i have listed the parts that i am thinking to build a gaming pc based upon it.

    1 MSI GAMING GeForce GTX 970 4GB OC DirectX 12 VR READY (GTX 970 GAMING 4G)
    2 Thermaltake Versa H21 Window CA-1B2-00M1WN-00 Mid-tower Computer Chassis (Black)
    3 EVGA 500 B1 80+ BRONZE, 500W Continuous Power, 3 Year Warranty Power Supply 100-B1-0500-KR
    4 WD Blue 1TB Desktop Hard Disk Drive – 7200 RPM SATA 6 Gb/s 64MB Cache 3.5 Inch – WD10EZEX
    5 ASUS M5A97 LE R2.0 AM3+ AMD 970 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard
    6 Corsair Vengeance 8 GB (2 x 4 GB) DDR3 1600 MHz PC3 12800 240-Pin DDR3 Dual Channel Memory Kit (CMZ8GX3M2A1600C9)
    7 Intel Boxed Core I5-6400 FC-LGA14C 2.70 Ghz 6 M Processor Cache 4 LGA 1151 BX80662I56400

    BRO graphic card costs 325 dollars, casing costs 44.8 dollars, power supply 49 dollars,Hard drive costs 54 dollars,Motherboard costs 70 dollars,Ram costs 39 dollars,and Processor costs almost 190 dollars. ( ALL PRICES ACCORDING TO AMAZON) TOTAL PRICE OF THIS BUILD 771.58 DOLLARS,

    Now bro please tell me that are all the parts compatible with each other?how is my built? can i reduce some of the price from this build?AM i missing some part? AND THE PARTS I CHOOSE ARE CORRECT OR NOT?

    • Bro Bro, wait. ASUS M5A97 LE R2.0 is an AMD motherboard, you cannot put an Intel processor in it. Either get the mentioned motherboard in the article or get a motherboard with either H170 or Z170 chipset. I5 6400 is only compatible to motherboards that have LGA 1151 socket. The next thing is the memory. You have to choose ddr4 ram modules. DDR3 is not compatible with LGA 1151 motherboards. Only DDR3L are compatible which you won’t find easily and there is no need in getting DDR3 ram. Get 8gb ddr4 memory stick.

      • Umer Saif

        thankss alotttt for ur reply bro u r great 🙂 n one thing is this ram right Kingston HyperX FURY Black 8GB 2133MHz DDR4 Non-ECC CL14 DIMM Desktop Memory (HX421C14FB/8) for the mother board mentioned above in ur build

        • Yeah Sure. That’s why I listed it. I won’t put incompatible parts.

          • Umer Saif

            thanks alot bro ur great 🙂

  • Umer Saif

    AND bro plz also tell me that is msi gtx 970 better or Gigabyte GV-R939G1 GAMING-8GD G1 Gaming Graphics Card AMD R9 390 512 Bit GDDR5 8GB 2xDVI/HDMI/3xDP
    They almost cost same price but please tell me which should i use and does the motherboard i have listed below supports both of these or not?

    • R9 390 is better than gtx 970.

      • Umer Saif

        bro but i have read reviews that r9 390 heats up quickly and makes alot of noise as compared to msi gtx 970 which is a very solid card???

        • The difference in temperature and noise is very less. The only big difference is the power consumption but you will be able to run the card on 500 watts power supply and better if you buy a 600 watts. R9 390 is better for latest titles and gives even better performance at 1440p and 2160p.

  • Umer Saif

    1 MSI GAMING GeForce GTX 970 4GB OC DirectX 12 VR READY (GTX 970 GAMING 4G)

    2 Thermaltake Versa H21 Window CA-1B2-00M1WN-00 Mid-tower Computer Chassis (Black)

    3 EVGA 500 B1 80+ BRONZE, 500W Continuous Power, 3 Year Warranty Power Supply 100-B1-0500-KR

    4 WD Blue 1TB Desktop Hard Disk Drive – 7200 RPM SATA 6 Gb/s 64MB Cache 3.5 Inch – WD10EZEX

    5 Gigabyte LGA 1151 GA-H110M-A ( motherboard)

    6 Kingston HyperX FURY Black 8GB 2133MHz DDR4

    7 Intel Boxed Core I5-6400 FC-LGA14C 2.70 Ghz 6 M Processor Cache 4 LGA 1151 BX80662I56400

    Now please comment on this build an tell me should i make more changes?do i need a fan other then stock if i am not overclocking?and am i missing any part

    • Umer Saif

      ??

      • Everything is fine. Go for it.

        • Umer Saif

          thank u bro i am thinking to replace gtx 970 with msi r9 390 because theres not much price difference and am also thinking to use a 600 watt powersupply as well. bro just tell me wich optical drive should i use which can run both dvds and cds?also tell me that lan card is pre installed on motherboard?

          • For Odd, Asus dvd writer will cost you around $20.

            If you mean wifi adapter by lan card, then you have to buy it separately and you can get one as cheap as $14.

            If you mean a custom cpu cooler by 3rd party fan, then it’s only needed if your cpu heats too much. Generally i5’s and i7’s can handle high temperatures easily and i5 6400 is locked so you can only boost it up a few hundred Mhz and there is no need of buying a custom cooler for it. The stock one will be fine.

          • Umer Saif

            kindly also tell me whats a sound card should i install it?

          • Sound card is only useful if you want the highest quality of sound but its really not that much worth as the motherboard above has already very good hd quality built in audio feature.

          • Umer Saif

            thanks and bro from lan card i meant does the motherboard mentioned above has a ethernet cable slot to run internet?

          • Yes of course. Now every motherboard comes with at least one rj 45 port.

          • Umer Saif

            bro so what is actually a lan card and whats its purpose?

          • Lan card is used in those motherboards which don’t have LAN port pre-installed in them. Or someone may buy if the lan port is damaged or want to have an extra one.

          • Umer Saif

            whats the purpose of lan port and does the motherboard mentioned above has it?

          • The lan port is used for connecting the Lan or Wan Wire which is used for internet. For example I use a Grid device for wifi whose wire comes down to my system. It goes into the router and another LAN wire is connected from the router to my computer.
            And yes the above motherboard has it.

          • Umer Saif

            aoa bro i wanted to say that i have these all parts costs alot more then 850 dollars so can i cut the cost by replacing i5 6400 with i3 6100 + msi r9 390? how much is the difference it makes in fps?will my graphic card cover the kills in fps in i3 in 1080p gaming?

          • There are a lot of versions of r9 390 which cost below $350. But I would never go with a high end graphics card combined with a entry level cpu like i3. R9 390 is best with either amd processors like fx 8350 or i5’s.

          • Umer Saif

            is gigabyte r9 390 a good option as compared to the msi?

          • Both are good.

          • Umer Saif

            bro i live in pakistan and some items cant be shipped to pakistan from amazon and in normal shops all the things cost alot more what should i do 🙁

          • I live in India and the cost is more than in US. It’s because of the Shipping charges and VAT. We have to pay it. We cannot escape it.

          • Umer Saif

            bro so is it normal if I find the msi gtx 970 to be 420 dollars in Pakistan? should I buy it then?

          • You have no choice other than that. But you can also buy a gtx 960 if you can’t afford a 970.

          • Umer Saif

            i was wondering is this motherboard compatible with gtx 980ti in future if i upgrade.

          • Bro this motherboard is compatible with every graphics card including high end ones like titan X, R9 fury and others.

  • Worded Ostrich1

    which is better, this or the killer?

  • Worded Ostrich1

    how much time will this pc last?

    • At least one year.

      • Worded Ostrich1

        and then? it will stop working or it will have to get the parts updated?

        • By 1 year I mean that all the latest games that are going to be released this year and also the next, this pc can run them on high to ultra settings easily. After that more intensive games may come which may require more power but this pc will still be enough to play those games, at least on medium settings.

  • Umer Saif

    aoa brother my cousion has a dell optiplex 3020 i5. he wants to install a gtx 970 on it?first tell me does that pc support it.according to my research it has one pcie x16 slot and will it fit into its casing? and does the board support a 600 watt power supply ? please help

    • If the motherboard has one pci e x 16 slot and a 24 pin power connector then you can install a new Psu(minimum 500 watts) and a gtx 970 if the case has enough space.

      • Umer Saif

        how do i know it the case has enough case and how to find its motherboard model??

        • If your processor is i5 even if it is 1st gen the motherboard will definitely be having full compatibility with any graphics card and psu. But just open the case to find out whether it can support standard ps2 power supply and how much long your gtx 970 will be. If your case is a mini tower then you will need a single fan gtx 970 or if the case is mid tower it can support two fan gtx 970. Just measure the length of your case where you will install your gpu and check the full length of the gpu you are buying.

          • Umer Saif

            thanks alot for ur reply 🙂

          • Umer Saif

            bro i checked the details for dell optiplex 3020 i5.it says it supports upto four pcie cards what does it mean?

  • Umer Saif

    aoa brother this motherboard as u said has no vga or dvi port so i have a led that that both dvi and vga port but how will connect it to this motherboard if i buY it?

    • Does your monitor have hdmi? If yes use hdmi. Otherwise use a hdmi cable with hdmi to vga convertor.or get a similar motherboard with these ports.

      • Umer Saif

        right and one thing bro what is the difference between sata 3 motherboard and 2?what difference it makes?

        • The difference is in speed. Sata 2 is older interface of connecting hard drives to motherboards and is slower than the sata 3. Almost half the speed. But the ports are similar and sata 3 is backwards compatible. Means you can connect a sata 3 hdd or ssd to a sata 2 port also but it will reduce the transfer speed a lot.

          • Umer Saif

            ohh and please tell me thatthe motherboard above has only sata 3 ports?

          • It has 4 x sata 3 ports and no sata 2 ports.

  • BenJammin1023

    Thanks so much for this. This will be my first custom pc. I swapped the 1TB HDD for a 250GB SSD and will likely swap that out later for more storage. I also switched the 6400 for the 6500. With microcenter sales and combo discounts plus Jet.com 15% off 3 orders, I was able to build mine for $560 after tax. Here’s my build http://pcpartpicker.com/p/9XYCpg

  • Goalerjones

    This will be my first PC build. I’m very grateful for your build outlines. The local Fry’s tried to set me up for $1700. But this build fits my budget much better, and makes my wife happier!
    3 questions: 1) is there room in this case for an SSD? And 2) will upgrading the RAM to 32Gb make any problems? 3) other than thermal paste what other “extras” will I need to build this PC?

    Thanks for your time

    • hmm. 1. You can add a few SSD’s with hard drives as well.
      2. Upgrading to 32gb ram is not recommended. It won’t make any difference. But you can upgrade to 16gb if you want to. 8gb is still perfect for any build.
      3. You don’t need anything. Even a small amount of thermal paste comes already applied on heat sink. But you can buy one if you want.

      • Goalerjones

        Thanks for your reply. I’m going to order the parts now. If I have any further questions I will let you know

    • Goalerjones

      Okay, blu ray players, is there one you favor?

      • Yeah. It’s optional. You can also get a PCI wifi adapter. It’s very much common now and can be used for connecting to internet router without any ethernet wire.

  • Goalerjones

    I’m trying to find a windows 7 Professional that I can install on this new PC build. Any ideas where I should be looking?

  • Goalerjones

    I’m trying to find a windows 7 Professional that I can install on this new PC build. Any ideas where I should be looking?

  • Faran Khalid Cheema

    Just used this as reference and got a pc built. Used gtx 750 ti instead and added ssd, wifi, wireless keyboard+mouse, optical drive and windows 10 pro. Total cost was $775. Cant wait to game away. Thanks for making life easier for us noobs 😀

  • Faran Khalid Cheema

    Just used this as reference and got a pc built. Used gtx 750 ti instead and added ssd, wifi, wireless keyboard+mouse, optical drive and windows 10 pro. Total cost was $775. Cant wait to game away. Thanks for making life easier for us noobs 😀

  • Kamu Sama

    Hi bro, have a few questions.
    Since, the form factor is micro ATX, what compact case would you recommend?
    Which parts do you recommend to buy used? I am not familiar with the component wears but I am good at buying used. My budget is 600 so I want to max out what I can buy.