cheap pcBuilding cheap gaming computers doesn’t mean settling for mediocre hardware. This is kind of hard to believe since the gaming world is has a growing demand for exceptional graphics and extensive gaming time and experience, which are both expensive. If you have a type budget, here are some ideas for you so that you’ll get the quality you want.

In the first place, building your own gaming PC (already VR-ready for VR headsets) for saves you money (zero labor cost), from $3000 to around $600. That’s a huge leap. This article will share only insights on the PC parts and components that matter so that you won’t have to waste time and just go build your cheap but quality rig.

You can work on your gaming PC rig using six builds featured below as reference.  Each build has different features, performance levels, and costs. You will get information on the finer details that will make the big differences in your gaming experience. Your end goal is to have a plan and execute it.

$300 – The Chump Change Champion

Yes, you can build your own rig even if you have a tight budget. The con of going for a $300 build is you’ll be stuck with a cheap graphics card that may not reach your standards. Despite that, you can still upgrade the CPU, video card, and maybe the power supply to make your gaming rig perform consistently well.

This build helps you play games in medium settings with a basic build in the meantime while giving you an open opportunity to upgrade for better gaming experience when you have the money already.

Part List

CPUIntel G3258 4 Pentium 3.20 GHz 3M Cache 2 Core ProcessorBUY
MOBOAsus Micro ATX DDR3 1066 LGA 1150 Motherboards H81M-KBUY
GPUEVGA GeForce GT 740 Superclocked  2GB DDR3BUY
RAMCrucial Ballistix Sport 4GB Single DDR3 1600BUY
HDDSeagate 250GBBUY
CASEZalman ATX Mini Tower PC Case T2 PlusBUY
PSUCooler Master Elite Power – 460W Power SupplyBUY
Purchase This SystemBUY


$400 – The Cost Connoisseur

Normally, you have the option to spend around $600 to $800 if you want a decent rig assembled by computer assembly shops. That’s only one option. You can get a the same decent gaming rig for $400, and by “decent,” we mean from moderate to high-performance (in graphics, particularly). And because you’ll be the one to build it, you have absolute control over the quality of parts you’ll use, unlike when you have your rig built by businesses who will do to maximize profit by cutting costs.

Part List

CPUAMD FX-6300BUY
MOBOGigabyte GA-78LMTBUY
GPUEVGA GeForce GT 960 SuperclockedBUY
RAMCrucial Ballistix Sport 4GB Single DDR3 1600BUY
HDDSeagate 250GBBUY
CASEZalman ATX Mini Tower PC Case T2 PlusBUY
PSUCooler Master Elite Power – 460W Power SupplyBUY
Purchase This SystemBUY


$600 – The Limit Tester

You can get maximum performance in a $600 base rig equipped with a 1080p monitor for the fraction of the market cost. The base system can even support 1440p monitors and still offer maximum performance, although it is power-intensive despite the motherboard not being open to overclocking. If you’re all about the experience and nothing else complicated, this rig may be the one for you.

Part List

CPUAMD FX-6300BUY
MOBOGigabyte GA-970A-DS3PBUY
GPUXFX R9 380XBUY
RAMKingston Hyper X Fury 8GBBUY
HDDWD Blue 1TB Hard DriveBUY
CASEVIVO ATX Mid TowerBUY
PSUEVGA 600W 80+ BronzeBUY
Disc Drive:Samsung 24x Sata DriveBUY
Purchase This SystemBUY


$700 – HHH (Humble Hardworking Hero)

Have you watched YouTube videos showing water-cooled setups that offer breakneck frame rates? You can build that same top-dollar gaming PC for $2 to $3 thousand. But honestly, you can get the same superior experience and performance, albeit without the fancy add-ons, for just $700 worth of top-tier parts.

If you use AMD FX-8320 processor and GeForce GTX 970 graphics processing unit for this build, it can perform as well as a basic 4K gaming rig, minus the CPU prerequisite needed by Oculus Rift (Core i5-4950 and later versions). So far, nothing says that Oculus Rift rejects AMD CPUs. Until CPUs are priced lower, we’ll not claim that this rig is VR-ready.

Part List

CPUAMD FX-8320 Black EditionBUY
MOBOGigabyte GA-970A-DS3PBUY
GPUMSI Radeon R9 390BUY
RAMKingston Hyper X Fury 8GBBUY
HDDWD Blue 1TB Hard DriveBUY
CASEVIVO ATX Mid TowerBUY
PSUEVGA 650W 80+ GoldBUY
Disc Drive:Samsung 24x Sata DriveBUY
Purchase This SystemBUY


$800 – VR (Virtual Royalty)

Just a hundred dollars more and you’ll have a guaranteed VR-ready HHH gaming rig, which goes by the name of Virtual Royalty. This rig can run monitors from 1920 by 1080 to 2560 by 1440 resolution.

Part List

CPUIntel Core i5 – 4590BUY
MOBOGigabyte GA-H97-HD3BUY
GPUMSI Radeon R9 390BUY
RAMKingston Hyper X Fury 8GBBUY
HDDWD Blue 1TB Hard DriveBUY
CASEThermaltake Versa N21BUY
PSUEVGA 650W 80+ GoldBUY
Disc Drive:Samsung 24x Sata DriveBUY
Purchase This SystemBUY


Budget and preference make the difference

How much do you have? How much are you willing to give? The performance of your self-built gaming rig will primarily depend on how much budget you have. Of course, more money means better performance at this point. And by better, we mean more games, more powerful settings, higher frame rates, and more. Your budget will determine the prices of your rig’s components. Since you have a ceiling, it will be easier for you to choose which parts to buy cheap or which ones need the majority of the budget. Here are some questions you should answer.

Buy components with my current budget or save more for a better rig?

cheap pc under 500Buying parts now with less money has its pros and cons. This is easy. If you need better performance for more important reasons, then save for the future. If you need to play ASAP no matter what and have no need for an industrial-grade rig, buy what your money can afford now (especially if the cheaper rig can be upgraded still).

Less demanding games have no particular need for better hardware, and if you’re the less demanding one, you can play graphics-intensive games using a less expensive rig, although you have to play them under lower settings.

If you take graphics and processor output very seriously, then it’s better to save for something bigger. The delay adds to the impending gratification.

If you want to be on the middle ground, you can choose a custom rig that will allow gradual upgrades. This is the most reasonable choice.

Final reminders

  • Faster processors are more expensive, but they can run games better
  • The performance of a processor cannot be adjusted, so be careful when buying one
  • Allot a big sum for a quality motherboard. It runs your computer, so don’t take it for granted.
  • The in-game experience depends on the quality of the video card, and the price does not indicate its quality. Do your homework on this.
  • The memory dictates data processing speed of your computer
  • Buy a hard drive with a capacity just enough to meet your needs. Don’t waste money on space that you won’t likely need.
  • Running power-intensive games will require your rig to have a gaming case that can dissipate heat as quickly as possible
  • Choose a power supply based on its build, stability, efficiency, and nothing more.
  • Buy an optical drive if you find it toilsome to transfer games from CDs to a flash disk or download them from their makers’ sites.
  • Choose Windows 7 or 10 for an OS.