What are the cheapest components to build a good 4k gaming PC?
9 months ago
There are several considerations when it comes to building your own gaming PC, especially if you want to build one that’s capable of playing games in 4k resolution with the settings turned up all the way. Luckily, there are some inexpensive components you can choose to create a good gaming PC that doesn’t cost thousands of dollars. We’ll cover some of those in this article on what are the cheapest components to build a good 4k gaming PC.
A Good CPU
One of your primary concerns when building a good 4K gaming PC is what kind of processor you’ll use. Intel’s i5-4590 is one of its best CPUs, delivering solid performance at an attractive price. However, AMD’s R7 250x should be considered as well; while it can’t compete with Intel on multi-threaded tasks, it does more than well enough in games that don’t require as much CPU power.
A Good Motherboard
Choosing a good motherboard is one of your first steps. Buying an expensive motherboard doesn’t mean you’ll end up with a better PC, as long as you look for key features like USB Type-C and M.2 support. As part of your planning, figure out if you want to go with AMD or Intel processor—both will be fine for most games at 3840 x 2160 resolution, though there may be exceptions.
RAM is more affordable than ever, which means you can pack your machine with enough memory to run modern games. 4GB will suffice if you’re on a budget, but 8GB is ideal—that way, your PC will have plenty of room for its operating system and any applications you need to install. Plus, if your motherboard has an empty RAM slot (not all do), it’s easy to upgrade later.
Having good hard drive space for games is essential for any gaming PC, especially if you’re getting into virtual reality or if you have games that take up massive amounts of hard drive space. For example, Grand Theft Auto V takes up 60GB by itself. That means that if you want to play it on your computer, you’ll need at least 60GB of free hard drive space available. If you want to save money on storage, look for a solid state drive (SSD) rather than an old-fashioned spinning hard disk. SSDs are much faster and more reliable than HDDs, but they cost about 10 times as much per gigabyte of storage. If you can afford it, an SSD will be worth every penny; otherwise, just make sure your system has enough storage space to handle all your games and applications without being too cramped.
A Powerful GPU
The single most important component of any good 4K gaming PC is its graphics card. The requirements for good, consistent performance at ultra-high resolutions such as 3840 x 2160 can be extremely demanding on your GPU, particularly if you want to push settings up as high as they’ll go. For example, Nvidia’s top-end GTX 1080 comes with 3,584 shader cores and runs at 1,607MHz.
Video cards take up most of your power budget and tend to run hot. These days, if you’re building a good gaming computer, you should probably consider getting liquid cooling for your video card. It will help ensure that your computer doesn’t crash because it overheated. Liquid cooling is also relatively inexpensive these days. You can usually find a kit with everything you need for around $100-150 USD. If you go with air cooling, make sure that your case has enough room in front of your video card so that air can flow freely into it from outside of your case.
Good, Basic Peripherals
When building a good, basic, cheap 4K gaming PC there is one item you must include, whether it’s in your budget or not. That’s right; I’m talking about a keyboard and mouse! If you don’t have these two items then all of your hard work will be for nothing as most games require them. If you can afford a good set then go for it but if not just make sure they aren’t too shabby. A wired USB 2.0 keyboard should run around $10 while an optical wired mouse should cost no more than $5-$10 as well.