Disclosure: We may earn money from the products mentioned in this post.

Have a budget of $500 and want to know what the best gaming PC under $500 is? Then you’re in luck, we’ve compiled the perfect PC rig that will make use of that budget and provide you with an affordable gaming PC.

You will be amazed at what you can get for $500 in 2019, we are no longer in the realms of acceptable 1080p gaming for this budget. You need to start thinking in the realms of VR compatibility and perhaps even some 1440p gaming.

We’ve made sure to choose the absolute best components that all total below $500 at the current time of writing, along with a case that should make things pretty easy to install.

But we don’t want to make you too bored, so let’s crack on with the list. One last thing, in case you wanted to spend just that little bit extra and opt for a pre-built system then this is the one that we would recommend.

Best Budget Pre-Built PC

Cyberpower Gamer Master PC

cyberpower-game-master-pc-gaming-rig
Technical Specifications
CPUAMD Ryzen 5 1400 (4-Core @ 3.2GHz)
RAM8GB DDR4
Graphics CardAMD Radeon RX 570 4GB
Connectivity6 x USB 3.1 | 2 x USB 2.0 | 1 x RJ-45 Network Ethernet 10/100/1000 | 802.11 AC Wi-Fi
Audio7.1 Channel

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So that’s what you want to buy if you don’t fancy building yourself a PC and are on a budget, but now we move onto the main show which is the best gaming PC under $500.

CPU – Intel Core i5-9400F

intel-core-i5-9400f-gaming-cpu
Technical Specifications
Cores/Threads6/6
Clock Speed2.90 GHz (up to 4.10 GHz Turbo Frequency)
Cache9MB
ChipsetIntel 300 Series
Compatible Motherboards ChipsetsB360 | H370 | H310 | Q370 | Z390 | Z370
Integrated Graphics CardNo

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If you are in need of a cheap $500 dollar gaming PC then you can’t go wrong with the Intel Core i5-9400F for your CPU. At its current price of $149.99 you won’t find much better on the market that can perform at 1440p and even at 4K for gaming.

Rocking a cool 2.90 GHz base clock with an option to Turbo clock it all the way up to 4.10 GHz is insane. You also get 6 physical cores to help you multitask without any issues. We would recommend the Ryzen 5 2600X in this CPU price bracket, but unfortunately that currently sits about $40 above the i5-9400F which is quite a substantial difference for a budget gaming PC under $500.

Graphics Card – XFX AMD Radeon RX 570 XXX Edition

xfx-amd-radeon-rx-570-xxx-gpu
Technical Specifications
Compute Units32
Memory8GB GDDR5
Memory Clock Speed7,000 MHz
Base Frequency1,168 MHz
Boost Frequency1,244 MHz
Max PerformanceUp to 5.1 TFLOPs
Memory Bus Width256 bits

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The AMD Radeon RX 570 is arguably the king of performance when it comes to the best budget GPU. It provides ample amount of 1080p gaming performance and can even stretch to 1440p if you are willing to accept a few choppy frames and a more mediocre 30 FPS average in some high-end games.

To give you a real-world example, in our test the RX 570 managed to get an average of 63.5 FPS on Battlefield 1 at 1440p with Ultra Settings turned on. Think about that just for a second, a AAA game being run by a sub-$160 graphics card. There isn’t another GPU that we could recommend at this price bracket and that’s why we’ve gone with the XFX Radeon RX 570.

Coming in at $149.99, this GPU makes our current build sit at a cool $299.98.

RAM – Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB (2 x 8GB)

corsair-vengeance-lpx-16gb-gaming-ram
Technical Specifications
Memory16GB DDR4 DRAM
Memory Clock Speed2,400 MHz
Number of Pins288

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Another fantastic entry in our budget gaming PC build that we’re building. The Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB is simply affordable RAM that does what it says on the packet. It comes clocked at 2,400 MHz and that’s about as much as you need to know when it comes to a budget build.

On the one hand, you have a well-known and respected brand and on the other, you have a fast memory clock speed, affordable price and over 3,500 reviews on Amazon averaging 4.5 stars! There was simply no other option that we could have gone for in our cheap PC build. This RAM currently costs $63.99 but please bear in mind that RAM is one of the few components that can be highly volatile in price. We’re currently at $373.97 which doesn’t leave us with much breathing room for the rest, but just wait till you see what we have in store.

Storage – WD Blue 1TB 7200 RPM HDD

wd-blue-1tb-7200-rpm-gaming-hdd
Technical Specifications
Capacity1TB
InterfaceSATA 3.5″
RPM7200
Cache64MB
Memory TypeHDD

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Some of you will be be sad to see a HDD on our list, I know we wanted an SSD too. Unfortunately, if you want to use this as a gaming PC you will need at least 1 TB of storage and that doesn’t come cheap in the form of an SSD.

But the WD Blue 1 TB 7200 RPM HDD is the perfect solution coming in at just $43.69 which is just unbeatable at the moment. Again, storage is often volatile in price and may fluctuate but currently, we are at $417.66.

Power Supply – EVGA 500W 80+ White

evga-500w-power-supply
Technical Specifications
Power Output500W
Efficiency Rating80+ White Certified (80% efficiency under typical loads)
ModularNo

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The EVGA 500W is a stellar pickup at this price point, currently priced at $44.99 it offers incredible value for money. It also provides our rig with enough power to run smoothly even under high load situations.

It comes equipped with the usual OVP (Over Voltage Protection), UVP (Under Voltage Protection), OCP (Over Current Protection), OPP (Over Power Protection) and finally SCP (Short Circuit Protection). Wow… that was a lot of acronyms…

In typical EVGA fashion, they are also offering a 3 Year Warranty to give you peace of mind that you can keep on gaming no matter what happens. This PSU comes with a single +12V Rail which is typical to see.

Taking all of that in we currently, sit at a cool $462.65 in terms of the total cost. Getting ever closer to that sweet $500 spot.

Motherboard – MSI B360M

msi-b360m-motherboard-micro-atx
Technical Specifications
CPU SupportSupports 9th and 8th Gen Intel Core Processors
SocketLGA 1151
RAM SupportDDR4 Memory up to 2666 MHz
Form FactorMicro ATX

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The next component making its way on to our list is the MSI B360M which is a micro ATX motherboard. It is by far the best value component for the sub-$500 bracket and comes with a bunch of features and connectivity options.

It comes with the expected connectivity options such as PCIe Gen3 X4 and a SATA interface. However, for those who want it, there is even support for RGB LED strips to be added to the motherboard.

Adding this component to our list at a price of $66.01 brings the total price so far to $528.66… wait what?

No that wasn’t a typo the total price is currently $528.66, the reason is pretty simple though. When we first made this build all of the components came to a cool sweet sub-$500 price. However, due to recent price fluctuations, this has caused a lot of our components recommended to skyrocket in price.

So what now? Well, we will provide you with the components that we would recommend using to create a fantastic $500-$600 gaming PC. We will then at the bottom of the post include some substitutes to this build that will take the price down below $500. Sound good? Alright, let’s continue.

Case – Thermaltake Versa H17 Black SPCC Micro ATX

thermaltake-versa-h17-micro-atx
Technical Specifications
Form FactorMini Tower
Motherboard SupportMicro ATX
Dimensions15.35″ x 8.07″ x 14.96″
Form FactorMicro ATX
Weight10.16 Lbs

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The Thermaltake Versa H17 is our PC case choice for this sub-$500 gaming pc build. It’s a mini tower that holds a micro ATX motherboard and offers an incredible mix of portability and performance.

It also features an incredibly stylish brushed aluminum look front panel that lets it blend into any surroundings. It even comes equipped with a tool-free hard drive bay which means changing hard drives should be a piece of cake.

Cooling is primarily done by the 120mm rear fan which comes included in the case. Small but mighty is definitely the right sentence to describe this case, it even has room for a 280mm radiator on the front if you want to integrate some water cooling.

Last but not least, you’ll never have too little connectivity with the top-front panel that boasts 1 x USB 3.0 port, 2 x USB 2.0 ports, an HD microphone jack, and a headset jack.

So how much does all of this functionality cost? A mere $42.99! That’s simply unbelievable value for money. So in its current state our rig is sat at a slightly over budget figure of $571.65.

Not too bad, but we can do better, let’s start optimising this build and get it down to that glorious sub-$500 band.

Replacement Budget CPU – Intel Core i3-9100F

intel-core-i3-9100f-gaming-cpu
Technical Specifications
Cores/Threads4/4
Clock Speed3.6 GHz (up to 4.20 GHz Turbo Frequency)
Cache6MB
ChipsetIntel 300 Series
Compatible Motherboards ChipsetsB360 | H370 | H310 | Q370 | Z390 | Z370
Integrated Graphics CardNo

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The biggest saving that we can find, without having to suffer in the way of gaming performance, is by changing up the CPU. Instead of the Intel Core i5-9100F, we have gone for its little brother the i3-9100F which comes in at roughly $50 cheaper but still delivers a similar gaming performance.

4 physical cores clocking in at 3.6 GHz is what gives this budget CPU the real edge. Not only that but we’ve seen them on Amazon for $99.99! So taking that price into consideration and adding it on to our PC build we see the price drop down to $521.65.

We are just $21.65 dollars short of our target and we have one final component to change that will make us hit that target.

Replacement Graphics Card – PowerColor RX 570

powercolor-radeon-rx-570-gaming-gpu
Technical Specifications
Compute Units32
Memory4GB GDDR5
Memory Clock Speed7,000 MHz
Base Frequency1,168 MHz
Boost Frequency1,250 MHz
Memory Bus Width256 bits

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Our replacement GPU is the PowerColor Red Dragon RX 570. You might be thinking how is this cheaper than the other RX 570 that we’ve recommended. But it’s actually pretty simple, this one doesn’t have as much GDDR5 memory (4GB) and that is why it’s $20 cheaper than the XFX model.

So if you’re happy to have a slightly weaker performance at higher resolutions then this GPU will suit you perfectly. There really isn’t much different to this GPU compared to the XFX one apart from the GDDR5 memory.

So, taking that all into account the total final cost of our build is now $501.65 which is as good as it will get. There will always be price fluctuations that will prevent us guaranteeing a sub-$500 build but if your budget is that strict then feel free to lower the quality of either the hard drive or RAM and we are sure that you will get it below $500!.

So if want to purchase our $500 gaming PC build then simply click on the button below!

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Upgrade Paths

We weren’t just going to leave it at that, there’s a whole host of upgrade opportunities with this incredibly cheap gaming PC build. Realistically if you care about gaming performance the most, then the obvious upgrade choices are for a new GPU, CPU, RAM and hard drive.

However, one thing to note is that if you are going to change either the GPU or CPU then you might need to also change your power supply to accommodate for this new high-end tech.

GPU Upgrade – MSi GTX 1660 Ti

msi-geforce-gtx-1660-ti-gaming-gpu

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Arguably one of the best mid-range graphics card out on the market. The GTX 1660 Ti offers incredible bang for buck. You won’t struggle to run games at 1080p on High/Ultra settings whatsoever with this beast.

You’ll also be pleased to know that you shouldn’t have any bottlenecking issues either as the i3-9100F is more than up to the job. This card is definitely more suited for a higher-end $800-ish PC gaming rig as you will need to upgrade the hard drive and most importantly the power supply.

Also, bear in mind that with every increase in performance you will be paying for it, so if you’re on a strict budget then you’ll be hard-pressed to fit in this juicy upgrade. But if you’re looking for 60FPS or even 120FPS at 1080p with settings maxed out then look no further than the Nvidia GTX 1660 Ti.

Storage Upgrade – Crucial MX500

crucial-mx500-cheap-gaming-ssd

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Fed up of having a traditional HDD in your gaming PC build? Fear not, we have the perfect performance solution for you that won’t break the bank. The Crucial MX500 is, in our opinion, the best and cheapest SSD on the market. Currently priced in at $59.99 for a whopping 500 GB of solid-state memory, you really can’t get much better than that.

Not only is it an absolute bargain but the numbers speak for themselves, its sequential read/write speeds go all the way up to 560/510 MB/s respectively. Random read/writes are at a respectable 95K/90K respectively.

It even comes packaged in certified frustration-free packaging! To top it all off it even comes with ‘Integrated Power Loss Immunity’ meaning that if you experience a sudden power cut your work will still be saved.

Finally, for peace of mind, you also get Crucial’s 5-year limited warranty.

Power Supply Upgrade – Corsair CX 750

corsair-cx-750-gaming-pc-power-supply

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Just in case you do actually upgrade your GPU or CPU for something a little more high-end then we have the perfect power supply to keep things running smoothly. The Corsair CX750 is another spectacular combination of performance vs price and at $79.99 it’s quite the bargain.

It comes fully certified with the 80 Plus bronze badge which means you will be getting about 82% efficiency under 100% load! To give you some peace of mind, you’ll also have the ever-faithful 5-year warranty from Corsair.

The 140mm fan is quiet, even under load, and is thermally controlled to ensure minimal disruption to other components temperatures.

This is the perfect upgrade if you want to simply purchase a higher-end single GPU, however, if you are looking at running a multi-GPU setup in the form of either SLI or Crossfire then we would recommend getting a 1000W power supply just to be sure!

Operating System and Recommended Peripherals

Something to bear in mind is that we haven’t even begun to talk about an operating system or peripherals that you will need to start your cheap gaming PC.

If you’ve already got this sorted from another build, or perhaps a special deal that you’ve managed to nab then fantastic. However, we’ve provided this section just to make sure you’re fully informed and have everything you will need.

Operating System – Windows 10

Something that’s very tricky to get away from is having an operating system, no matter how quick or fast your PC is you will need one of these. Our recommendation is Windows 10, simply due to its compatibility with 99.99% of modern games, and it’s user interface environment that I’m sure you are comfortable using and navigating through.

It’s pretty easy to install, once you’ve got a copy of Windows 10 on the medium (disc, USB etc.) of your choice then you can simply plug, run through the installation and play.

Remember, if you’ve got a license on another PC make sure to transfer that over instead of buying a new license, but if you don’t then simply click the button below to get on from Amazon.

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Gaming Mouse – Logitech MX518

logitech mx518 best gaming mouse 2019
Technical Specifications
CPI16,000
SensorOptical
ConnectivityUSB
Number of Buttons8
Left/Right HandedRight Handed
Weight0.22 lbs (101 grams)

If by chance you don’t have a gaming mouse or keyboard sorted out then this is the section for you. We’ve taken the winner from our best gaming mouse 2019 post and put it in as our go-to gaming mouse for this build.

The highly customisable Logitech MX518 comes packed with an ergonomic design that’s backed up by an easy to use and intuitive software. The sensor on this mouse comes packing with an incredibly precise 16,000 CPI, perfect for those intense gaming moments.

To make sure there’s absolutely no lag input whatsoever, there’s even an inbuilt ARM 32 microprocessor integrated within the mouse. It’s even fairly well priced, so if you need an upgrade and need something that will last you for years to come then we recommend getting the Logitech MX518.

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Gaming Keyboard – Razer Cynosa Chroma

razer cynosa chroma gaming keyboard
Technical Specifications
ConnectivityWired
BacklightingYes (RGB Lighting)
Programmable/Macro KeysYes

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Looking now at the gaming keyboard choice for this build, we’ve opted for the Razer Cynosa Chroma even though it ranks in at #5 on our best gaming keyboards 2019 post.

There’s a good reason for that, quite simply put every other keyboard on that list is incredibly expensive when we consider this total cost of this gaming rig. Whilst it’s not a full-blown mechanical keyboard, the membrane keys are still a pleasure to use.

It’s our cheap gaming keyboard of choice and comes packing with features, such as a 1ms polling rate and RGB lighting.

Best Gaming Surface – SteelSeries QcK

steelseries qck gaming surface best gaming mouse mat
Technical Specifications
Dimensions900 x 400 mm (17.72 x 15.75 in)
Thickness4 mm (0.16 in)
MaterialMicro-woven cloth
BaseNon-slip rubber

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The gaming surface of choice for almost a large range of esports pros. The SteelSeries QcK is the pinnacle of gaming surfaces and for many good reasons. The ‘Never-Slip’ base is a non-slip rubber base that has been created to remove any unwanted movement.

The micro-woven cloth provides second to none performance and comfort no matter your gameplay style.

At under $20 a pop it’s definitely worthwhile having and you’d be amazed at the difference it can make.

Optional Accessory – Razer Gaming Bungee V2

razer bungee v2 cable management system

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Something that you might not have ever heard of before, but certainly should consider getting, is the Razer Gaming bungee V2.

Unsurprisingly it’s not an actual bungee…. but what it is, is a fantastic anti-cable tangling system. Again, it’s another amazing product that comes in at a sub-$20 price tag.

It provides drag-free cord control (up to 3.2 mm), features a rust-resistant spring arm and is weighted for stability and convenient anti-slip feet to make sure it stays in place.

Recommended Gaming Monitor – Alienware 25 inch Gaming Monitor

alienware 25 inch gaming monitor
Technical Specifications
Resolution1920 x 1080
TechnologyLCD
Size25 in
Aspect Ratio16:9
Refresh Rate240Hz
Item Weight 13.47 lbs

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The 25 inch Alienware gaming monitor is an absolute spectacle, from all angles. The AW2518HF is an LCD gaming monitor that has more tricks up its sleeve than you can count on your fingers.

It makes use of AMD’s FreeSync technology to synchronize your GPU with the monitor, essentially this reduces graphic distortions such as screen tearing. If you’ve never heard of this technology before then think of it as the new age V-Sync.

Not only does it perform well but it’s quite a looker, crafted from premium materials this monitor stays true to Alienware’s ethos. With a 240Hz refresh rate and 1-ms response time, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better gaming monitor for this price tag.

A little bit pricey in relation to the $500 gaming pc build, but we definitely think it’s worth every penny.

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