Best $400 Dollar Gaming PC Build, An Optimal Budget Build For 2017

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If you’re looking for the best bang for your buck on a $400 dollar gaming pc build then you should definitely check this build out. This build is the most optimal when it comes to building a PC on a tight budget.

Next-gen PC gaming is going to take quite a bit of GPU and CPU power to run for the long term. Although you’d get much more future proof power out of a $500 build, this build will do just fine for some of the games coming out this year. Just don’t expect to be able to run them on the higher graphics settings.

 

Best Build For A Tight Budget


This build is actually very similar to my current build as far as power goes. I’m able to run games such as Skyrim on the highest graphic settings and Elder Scrolls Online on medium settings. If you’re looking for a PC build just to get your feet wet in the PC gaming industry then this is definitely the build for you. This build is 100% upgradeable so you don’t really need to worry about compatibility issues when it comes to upgrading down the road.

You probably won’t need to upgrade until we get close to the middle of 2017, if you’re at all interested in VR then you’ll definitely need to upgrade if you’re wanting to run some of the high-end games with VR. There are also games that don’t need a bunch of power to run but I’m assuming that you’ll need to upgrade in order to run a game like Skyrim with virtual reality. Though this is just a guess, we’ll know for sure once it actually comes out.

If you’ve never actually built a computer before then you’re going to have to do a little research. I have included a video below by NeweggTV, it’s the same video that I went through step by step when I went to build my first gaming PC. It’s very detailed and you should be able to know exactly how it all comes together after you watch it and during the actual building process.

 

How To Build A Computer


Be sure to go through the video while you wait for your parts to come in the mail and be sure to watch it as you actually build it. It’s good to have a visual of what it is you’re doing when you’re actually going through the process of bringing your PC to life!

With that, let’s get to the build.

 

Optimal Hardware On A $400 Budget


 

Last Updated: February 23rd, 2017

 

caseCase – Rosewill Micro ATX Mini Tower SRM-01

Motherboard  – ASUS H110M-A/M.2 LGA 1151 MicroATX Motherboard

  Processor – Intel Pentium G4400

gpu Video Card – EVGA GeForce 2GB GTX 1050 SC

 RAM – Crucial Single 8GB DDR4

Hard Drive – Seagate 1TB

powerPower Supply – EVGA 400W

cdCD Drive – Asus 24x DVD-RW

 

Final Price: $431.63

 

Details


This build is pretty well put together and you’re going to LOVE this build once you bring it to life! 😀

The computer case is entirely up to you because I know there are some people who want to have a really cool looking case to go with their build. If you want to browse compatible cases with these parts then Click Here!

I’d suggest going with the case that I have listed through because it’s the cheapest case you could get on Amazon and it’s 100% compatible with all of the parts you’ll need. Everything will fit just fine and you’re getting the most bang for your buck!

The combination of the Pentium G4400 and the GTX 1050 2GB card is a match made in heaven.

These parts aren’t completely high-end and new but they aren’t crappy either. You’ll be able to run games like Dragon Age: Inquisition, Grand Theft Auto V, The Elder Scrolls Online and Dying Light with this build. One thing you shouldn’t expect is being able to run all games on ultra settings with 60 FPS, that comes with upgrading down the road.

The Pentium G4400 may be a somewhat lower end CPU but it’s able to be upgraded down the road to other CPUs using the LGA 1151 socket. This includes processors such as an i5-6500 or even an i7-6700. If you wanted to go with an upgrade in the future that would be able to be overclocked then you’d also have to change the motherboard since the one in this list is not compatible with overclocking.

8GB of RAM is the industry standard if you want to have a high quality gaming experience. In the past I was sharing using a 4GB stick to start off but that isn’t going to cut it anymore. Sure, this increases the price a decent bit but paying that extra bit is 100% worth putting into the build.

Without having 8GB of RAM you wouldn’t be meeting with the minimum requirement of almost every high end game that has released in the past year and it’s definitely going to be required for many years to come. Besides, having 8GB of RAM also helps with multi-tasking and using other high demanding programs which makes it that much more worth getting.

The 400W EVGA power supply is great and EVGA has always delivered high quality power products. If you’re going to upgrade this build down the road then make sure you up the wattage as well that way you can be sure you have enough power to run the high end hardware when you actually do decide to upgrade.

1TB of hard drive space is almost crucial in order to have a good PC gaming experience. The Elder Scrolls Online alone is a 57GB game, it’s good to make sure you have enough space for everything that you’ll be downloading into your PC!

This build would be more than capable of gaming decently at 1080p resolution. If you’re in need of a good 1080p monitor then I’d highly suggest taking a look at this one by Asus!

71r1E7x7PlL._SL1500_MonitorASUS VS228H

Also, if you need to grab a keyboard and a mouse then this combo by Cooler Master is going to probably be the one for you. For its price point it is an absolute steal and the mouse is perfect for gaming at 1080p.

cm-storm-devastator-ii-reviewKeyboard/MouseCM Storm Devastator II

 

Operating System And Internet Connection


Now as far as operating system go, that would be a decision that is entirely up to you. You could always go with Windows and then you’ll be able to upgrade to Windows 10 when it releases later on this year.

If you do go with Windows then make sure that you go with a 64bit version that way you’ll be able to use 8GB of RAM in the future if you don’t have it already. I highly suggest that you do just get the 8GB of RAM anyway, you’ll need it going forward.

You could also go with the free, open source operating system known as Ubuntu. Ubuntu is a linux-based operating system that you can download and add to your PC build 100% for free. The only downside is that not all PC games are completely compatible with Linux. There are work arounds but it includes downloading certain programs and emulating the experience.

If you have Windows then you won’t have any problems with PC games for the most part. You could always pirate Windows as well but this is really frowned upon and NO I will not show you how to get Windows for free. It’s better to pay for the legit version anyway that way you won’t have any bugs in your system and then you’ll also be able to upgrade to Windows 10 which is actually supposed to cater to PC gamers, with DirectX 12 and such. I’m pretty excited for it myself!

If you’re looking for optimal internet connection then I highly suggest that you go with broadband. Check out the wireless network adapter that I’ve linked below if you’d like, it plugs right into a USB slot and then an antenna sticks out of the USB to find connectivity with your wifi connection. Based on the reviews over on Amazon for it, it keeps a good, reliable connection!

windows 10 64bit Windows 10 64bit – Microsoft Windows 10 Home 64bit

81CsUmlJ+iL._SL1500_ USB Wireless Network Adapter – Panda 300Mbps Wireless N USB Adapter

Also, if you’re looking for a cheaper mouse and keyboard combination then you should definitely check these out! They are high quality for the price point and you’ll be able to have an awesome gaming experience with these peripherals!

 

To Conclude


All in all, a $400 gaming PC build is definitely a way to go. Upgrading down the road will be easy and you’ll be able to have an entry-level PC gaming experience with this build.

So what do you guys think of this build?

Pretty great hardware right?

Let me know in the comments below! 😀

If you ever have any questions about how to go about building it or just in general then feel free to ask me in the comments area! 🙂

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857 Responses to Best $400 Dollar Gaming PC Build, An Optimal Budget Build For 2017

  1. Gale Clark says:

    Colton,
    My son is getting into gaming and I have been researching gaming pc’s. I found your review on the Cyberpower Gamer Ultra GUA880. That is what he was looking at. Then I seen your $400 budget build from that review. So Ive been looking at higher quality units (I think). Can you tell me witch of the following would be better, or if they are overpriced.

    1. Inspiron Desktop Gamer Edition (Intel) $734.00
    *6th Generation Intel® Core™ i7-6700 Processor (8M Cache, up to 4.00 GHz)
    *Windows 10 Home 64bit English
    *16GB Dual Channel DDR3L 1600MHz (8GBx2)
    *2TB 7200 rpm Hard Drive
    *AMD Radeon™ HD R9 360 2GB GDDR5
    *802.11bgn + Bluetooth 4.0, 2.4 GHz, 1×1

    2. ALIENWARE AURORA $783.00
    *7th Generation Intel® Core™ i5-7400 Processor
    *Windows 10 Home 64bit English
    *8GB DDR4 at 2400MHz; up to 64GB
    *AMD Radeon™ RX 460 with 4GB GDDR5
    *1TB 7200RPM 6Gb/s
    We would prefer to get one that works as apposed to building and hoping we get it right.. Thanks for any comments you have

    • Colton P says:

      Gale,

      Although the specs for those PCs aren’t necessarily “bad” – you would definitely be paying more than what you should for it.

      If you really wanted to go with a pre-built PC for around that price point then I would recommend this PC from CyberPowerPC – you’d still get more power per dollar spent by doing your own build but that’s one of the higher value pre-built PCs that are on the market right now!

      Let me know what you decide to do!

  2. Jessie says:

    Hi Colton. I’m wondering if I could play Skyrim with mods including an ENB with this build? Not the Special Edition, just the regular version? Thanks!

  3. Peter Hungerford says:

    I built the old model you recommended with the AMD processor and it has been working great so far. My only concern is when I want to get a new graphics card will the power supply be enough to keep it running? The motherboard on the build recommended at least a 500W supply and the one in the build is 400W. I know some graphics cards can suck up power like crazy so I was just wondering if the power supply can really take it. Thanks

    • Colton P says:

      Hey there Peter,

      As long as you aren’t overclocking then you won’t need to upgrade the power supply right away. The only reason it’d be essential to upgrade to a higher wattage one is when you upgrade past these upgrades coming up for you.

      I’d suggest getting a RX 480 graphics card for your next card, it’s what would make the most sense. There will be a bit of a bottleneck with your CPU but it’s not like your performance is going to be bad because of that. You can upgrade the CPU down the road as well!

  4. Noah Luty says:

    Im using all the specs you are except replacing the video card with http://amzn.to/2nLndWV

    and then the optical drive http://amzn.to/2mADXjA

    just to see what you think and or if its all compatible.

  5. James says:

    So now that windows 10 has been released and out for a while. Would you still recommend that, as the operating system to go with for gaming?

    • Colton P says:

      For sure man, lots of the newer games coming out basically require Windows 10 and it has all of the features that’ll be needed down the road. It’s a pretty awesome OS in my opinion!

  6. James says:

    Would this case suit the build, I read a lot of mixed reviews on it. I would really like an opinion not only on the case with the budget build you have above. Also potential upgrades in the future and how that will work out. Thanks for your time. http://amzn.to/2mwJkzl

    • Colton P says:

      Hey there James,

      Yes – that case would work just fine with the build. Many people have used that case and I’ve heard good things about it so far! The way the build is you’ll be able to upgrade to a better processor and video card down the road whenever you deem it necessary, could always come back here when that time would come and I’d be able to point you in the right direction.

      Let me know if I can help more as you’re moving forward with your build!

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