Best $400 Dollar Gaming PC Build, An Optimal Budget Build For 2018

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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.

 

$400 Dollar Gaming PC Build

 

Best Build For A Tight Budget


This build is actually very similar to my past build as far as power goes. I was 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 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 2018, 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: August 1st, 2018

* = Optional, read below. Final price includes optional part.

 

 Case – Rosewill Micro ATX Mini Tower FBM-05

 Motherboard  – ASRock B250M-HDV

  Processor – Intel Pentium G4560

 Video Card – MSI GAMING GeForce GTX 1050 2GB

  RAM – Crucial 8GB Single DDR4

 Hard DriveWestern Digital 500GB

 Power supply – EVGA 400W N1

cd * CD Drive (Optional) – Asus 24x DVD-RW

 

Final Price: $445.18 (Higher price due to overpriced RAM/GPU)

 

Build 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. Some may want lighting, extra fans or more room for future upgrades using bigger cards. Whatever the reasoning, you’ll want to make sure you pick the case that suits you best.

I’d suggest going with the case that I have listed above 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 only downfall is that I don’t think there is enough room for upgrading to a bigger card, you’ll have to stick with the mini versions that are available.

There are plenty of other choices as well, if you plan on using more than one hard drive now or in the near future then you’ll want to go with a case that has more slots for more hard drives. Take a look at other mid-tower cases on Amazon and ask away if one you find would work or not, I’ll let you know!

The combination of the Pentium G4560 and the GTX 1050 2GB card is a match made in heaven.

When it comes to entry level CPU power and staying within the $400 range, the Pentium G4560 CPU is a great starting point!

These parts aren’t completely high-end and new but they aren’t crappy either. You’ll be able to run games like Overwatch, Grand Theft Auto V, The Elder Scrolls Online and Rainbow Six: Siege 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 G4560 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 i5-7400 or even an i7-7700. 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.

Video card power has come a long way in recent years. Just a few years back a $400 build meant that you’d be having a video card just barely at the 1GB VRAM point.

A 2GB GTX 1050 is the ideal card right now when you’re looking at spending ~$400 on your build.

Now with nVidia’s new 1000 series cards it’s easy to have a 2GB VRAM card that packs a punch.

Again, I wouldn’t expect this build to run the newest games at ultra and giving you smooth frame rate but if you’re looking for an entry level PC experience for the lower price point, this is it.

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.

500GB of hard drive space isn’t the most ideal amount of storage when you think about some of the bigger titles that you could throw onto it such as The Elder Scrolls Online – it’s over 50GB for that one title. But, the motherboard is able to have multiple hard drives which allows you to, down the road, upgrade and/or add in another hard drive for more storage.

* Having a CD drive included with your build isn’t entirely essential, though for new builders it might streamline the process a bit which is why I include it into the build. You can save some money on the build by not including the CD drive as long as you know what you’re doing when it comes to installing your operating system and drivers without using the CDs that come with the different pieces of hardware.

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.

Keyboard/MouseCM Storm Devastator 3

 

 

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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1,168 Responses to Best $400 Dollar Gaming PC Build, An Optimal Budget Build For 2018

  1. Jovan says:

    Hey there!
    Any suggestions for 400$ build in 2018?
    My budget is 500$ but i want to save some money for a monitor.
    Is this good?
    CPU: Intel Pentium G4560 3,5ghz
    GPU: Nvidia Geforce GTX 1050 2gb
    Ram: Kingston 8GB 2400MHz DDR4
    MotherBoard:ASUS H110M-R
    Hard Disk: 1 TB
    PSU: 500w
    And another question. Is my CPU compatiable with the MotherBoard.
    Thank! (sorry for bad english)

    • Colton P says:

      Hey Jovan!

      The build in this post has actually been updated today to include the G4560, like what you’re trying to use with your build. But the motherboard you chose would have to have a prior BIOS update in order to be used and since it’d be a fresh build, it wouldn’t be compatible.

      The new motherboard listed above, the ASRock B250M-HDV, would be a compatible board for that CPU! Everything else would work just fine as well.

      Let me know what you decide to go with and I’m always here to help!

  2. Kaito says:

    What about the pc cooler

    • Colton P says:

      There is a stock Intel cooler that comes with the CPU, Kaito.

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

      • Kaito says:

        do you think I can use an different motherboard with a bigger case.

        Im looking to buy an budget motherboard that is compatible with the parts that are already listed.

        and this is the case
        “Corsair Carbite 100R Silent”

  3. Drake says:

    Does this build include all the wiring?

    • Colton P says:

      Yes! All of the cables and what not you’d need will come with the different parts of the build. Let me know if I can help more as you’re moving forward with your build man!

  4. Kiran says:

    Is there anyway for you to make a video showing exactly how to put it together? This is my first computer and I don’t know how to do this, and the video above seems a lot more complicated than this setup.

    • Colton P says:

      Hey Kiran,

      Overall, the process is still the same. You’ll maybe want to look up videos of installing that specific Ryzen CPU and there are instructions that will come with as well but it’s really not all that hard. All of the other steps are going to be the exact same as the video besides maybe that the case is going to work slightly different to open/close.

      Let me know what you decide to do!

  5. Faris says:

    how many fps will it get for csgo? (counter strike global offensive)

    • Colton P says:

      On very low preset you would get between 150-200 FPS on average depending on what’s going on since that’s how that game’s engine works. You’ll want to tweak between max/high for a constant 60 FPS average.

  6. Levi Miller says:

    Thank you for making such a great website of budget PC Building I got all the parts suggested on September 2017 now I want to upgrade to a core i7 processor would I need to upgrade my power supply as well
    My current power supplies 400 watt

    • Colton P says:

      What is the exact processor that you currently have? That’ll help me to narrow down what you can and cannot upgrade to. Let me know!

      • Marvin says:

        Wouldl a MSI Gaming Intel Skylake H110 LGA 1151 DDR4 USB 3.1 Micro ATX Motherboard be compatible with this build.

        • Colton P says:

          Hey Marvin,

          You’re referring to this exact motherboard then, right?

          If so then no, it’s not compatible with the above CPU. It’s a Kaby Lake CPU so it would need a BIOS update prior to using it so unless you had the previous generation processor to use to update it then it wouldn’t work right out of the gate.

  7. Levi Miller says:

    I also forgot to mention I got the $400 budget PC

    • Colton P says:

      Gotcha, yeah if you’re able to share which processor you’re currently using then I’ll be able to help for sure

      • Levi Miller says:

        I have the Intel Pentium g4400

        • Colton P says:

          I also forgot to ask what type of motherboard you’re using, some would need the BIOS update if you were to go with the newer generation CPU. Do you know the exact motherboard that you have?

          • Levi Miller says:

            Asus motherboard H110M-A
            M.2
            From what I know it supports 7th gen and I’ll go with the 7th gen but if I can 8th gen that would be cool.
            And I’m talking about the core i7 processor and I have the graphics card which you have currently on your recommended list above.

          • Colton P says:

            With the BIOS update, you’d be able to use the i7-7700 for sure. Something like the 8700 would not be compatible with that board, you’d have to get a new board if you wanted to have an 8th gen processor.

  8. Gabriel Howland says:

    Hi Colton,
    I showed this build to a person who built a computer to run VR,
    he said to have an AMD graphics card, and more RAM.
    What’s your opinion? And Is there a graphics card that is the same price as the Nvidia one that works as well?
    Thanks

    • Colton P says:

      You could go with a AMD graphics card if you want lower performance, that’s up to you. You aren’t going to be able to have a PC for VR with a $400 budget PC.

      If you want to spend more, then you’ll be able to have more!

  9. Trenton O says:

    If i decide to upgrade the processor– does the motherboard need a bios update? How do I tell if it needs to be updated.

    • Colton P says:

      If you plan on going with a newer generation processor then you’d have to update the BIOS with the previous gen. For example, you cannot use a i7-8700 processor without updating but you’d be fine using an i7-7700 processor without any updates.

  10. Levi Miller says:

    Thanks Colton I appreciate that information good to know, but do I need upgrade my power supply because it’s 400 watts.

  11. Danny says:

    Hi I’ve got an AMD FX-6300 and a GIigabyte 78LMT-USB3. Which graphics card is best for this processor/motherboard? Much appreciated

  12. Alex says:

    Can I use this HDD instead with this build?
    https://amzn.to/2Iqzom5

  13. Grant says:

    Hi, I’m kinda new with building PC’s and I talked to a friend of mine and I showed him this build, and he made a couple of adjustments that were to much of a lunch to the gut price wise, but I need a second opinion he suggested I switch to a mini atx
    https://amzn.to/2MHcfhL
    And a ryzen 3 which was in my price range, any thoughts?
    https://amzn.to/2z5JRE2

    • Colton P says:

      Hey there Grant,

      Many reviews on that board aren’t ideal to what we’d like to see… Some say it’s DOA and what not which Amazon would work fast to get you a working one if that were the case, but it’s still better to go with something that is known to work better overall.

      Also, there is another gen up from Ryzen 3 1200 that has released that works with boards like that after a BIOS update. I know it’s not within your price range, but I’d suggest looking at the $500 build here on the site to see what I’m talking about.

      Essentially, you could go with those changes. But you’d be better off having a better motherboard that’s able to overclock the 1200 or 2200G for further performance. Let me know what you decide to go with or if you need more help deciding!

  14. Sam Pepper says:

    the case on the build isn’t on Amazon anymore. Are there any other cheaper smaller cases that you could recommend that would work with the build?

  15. Lucien Richardson says:

    What happens if you don’t buy Windows 10? Like will the computer just not work? Are there other options? Up until now I thought Windows came pre-installed on things.

    • Colton P says:

      Every PC needs an operating system such as Windows in order to operate, by buying every part of a computer instead of buying it pre-built from a company you’ll need to install the operating system via disc or a USB drive in order to get it going.

      Without installing Windows then it’ll simply be the motherboard BIOS without anything telling it how it should run. There are different operating systems available as well such as SteamOS or Linux, it’s just that Windows is the most popular and most compatible OS today.

  16. Omar says:

    I’ve been researching and watching videos on how to build a $400 or below that I can upgrade in the future, for a couple of weeks now. With that being said this is one of the best break downs for parts and it went a lot into what I bought yesterday with my build which I’m going to list below:

    Rosewill ATX mid tower gaming $34.99 (reviews between this case and one that was $10-15 bucks more were about the same and i love the extra fans for future upgrades.)
    Gigabyte GA- AB350M-Gaming 3 $74.99 (Bought this mainly because I was assured it would be updated to most current BIOS and reviews)
    WD Blue 1TB SATA $43.99 (bought this because of the reviews and still under budget)
    EVGA 600 b1, 80+ bronze 600W $55.25 (went with a higher supply since I kept reading more power equals less heat and I really wasn’t gonna buy a 750w since it was about $40-50 more so spent the extra on ram)
    Kingston Technology HyperX Fury 2666MHz DDR4 8GB $93 (Didn’t do much research on the MHz factor in RAM which I probably should have other than I know it will work with my MOBO, but it was about the same price as the lower MHz and it had a 1.33 off coupon to clip on Amazon.)
    ADATA 120GB ssd $25 : (I keep seeing prices keep getting cheaper wouldn’t be surprised if you could get one with more storage for the same price)
    *Bought from staples: AMD Ryzen 3 2200g 84 (got staples to price match Mircocenter’s 79.99 price and they give an extra 10% off. Free shipping and tax. Also I didn’t have a mircocenter in my state so I don’t know if that will be an issue with price matching)

    thats including the $70 amazon gift card you get for applying for their credit card which you don’t have to use since I ended up paying for this build with my debit.
    total: 367.07

    Feel free to let me know if I did something wrong first time builder would love advice.

    • Colton P says:

      What are you deciding to go with for a video card? I don’t see one listed in your specs.

      Other than that, it seems like a great build for the price and you’re well on your way! You’ll want to add a traditional hard drive down the road as I’m sure that 120GB is going to fill up sooner rather than later.

      Everything should be compatible and good to go. If the board doesn’t have the updated BIOS then you’ll be able to be in contact with AMD for a “loaner” CPU to do the upgrade quick and then send the processor back to AMD if need be!

      Always here for whatever else going forward

  17. Luke A says:

    I built my PC a while ago im pretty sure you have changes some things and i was wanting to upgrade my proccesor the current one i have is the pentium G4400 that was on the build a while ago. i was wanting like an i5.what do you sugest?

    • Colton P says:

      What’s the exact type of motherboard that you’re currently using? Is it a H110M? I can’t quite remember which board was shared back when the G4400 was listed.

      Once I know which board you’re using I’ll be able to know which i5 is best suited for an upgrade! Let me know!

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