Gamers know the need to have the latest and greatest gaming PC. But how much does it cost to build a PC? Building a custom gaming PC can be expensive; however, this expense can be managed by buying the right components.
The other year, I spent around $1,500 to build a mid-range gaming computer. The cost can vary greatly depending on the type of components you choose and the overall performance you want.
In this article, I will discuss how much it costs to build a PC and how much you should spend. I’ll cover some key components that affect the cost and how to shop smartly for the best value. Ultimately, I will estimate what it costs to build a PC and provide some tips to save money.
What is a Gaming PC?
Now, before I dive into how much it costs to build a PC, let’s take a moment to define what a gaming computer is.
A gaming computer is a PC that is designed and optimized for playing video games. It’s usually equipped with the latest hardware, such as a powerful processor, graphics card, and plenty of RAM.
All of these components come together to provide smooth, lag-free gaming experiences.
What Other Uses of A Gaming PC?
Apart from being the beast in gaming, a gaming PC can also be used for other activities. But do you have a clue what are the other uses of a gaming PC? Other than playing games, this type of computer can also be used:
1. For graphic design and video editing
Video editing is a complex task that requires a powerful processor and graphics card. A gaming PC is ideal since it has the latest hardware to handle these tasks. You can even use it for 3D animation and rendering.
2. Home Theatre PC
You can use a gaming PC if you have a large collection of movies and TV shows. It will provide an immersive experience since it has powerful audio and graphics. You can even stream content from services such as Netflix and Hulu.
3. For Streaming Content and Broadcasting
Streaming video games and other media requires a significant amount of bandwidth, which a gaming computer can provide. With the right hardware, you can broadcast your gaming sessions online or stream movies from services like Netflix.
4. For Professional Applications
You can use a gaming PC for engineering, scientific research, and other professional applications that require powerful hardware and processing speed. This type of computer is also ideal for running complex software programs.
Which are the Required Parts To Build A PC for Gaming?
Now, let’s look at the cost of building a gaming PC to answer our question how much does it cost to build a PC?
The overall expense depends on the type of components you purchase and the performance you want. How do the components affect the price? If you build a gaming PC, certain components will have a greater impact on cost.
A processor is a key component in building a gaming PC, as it determines the gaming performance of your system. The more powerful processors tend to be the most expensive. You should also be aware that some processors require a more expensive motherboard.
2. Graphics card
A graphics card is an important component of a gaming PC, as it greatly affects the overall performance. High-end graphics cards can be expensive depending on your chosen type and brand.
For optimal performance, 3D animation and rendering require powerful graphics cards, so choosing one with the right specs is important.
Storage is an important component for gaming, as it affects loading times and overall performance. You can choose between a hard disk drive (HDD) or a solid-state drive (SSD). SSDs are typically more expensive, but they offer faster performance.
The motherboard is essential for your gaming PC. It should be chosen based on the components you want to use and how fast you need it to run. The cost of motherboards will vary based on the type and size.
RAM is also important when building a gaming PC. It determines your system’s speed and can be very expensive depending on your chosen type and amount.
Let’s get deeper into these components, their functions, features, price range and all the factors you should consider before choosing each.
Components You Require to Build A PC for Gaming
Now you have decided to build your PC. Now let’s get deeper into the parts of building a gaming PC. We will discuss each component’s price range and importance to the gaming PC.
There are several components needed to build a gaming PC. The most basic components are
1. Graphics Card (GPU)
2. Central Processing Unit (CPU)
4. Random Access Memory (RAM)
5. Storage – HDD/SSD
6. Power Supply Unit (PSU)
7. Computer Case
8. CPU Cooler
9. Case Fans
CPU and GPU are the main components of a gaming PC. The CPU is responsible for processing data and running applications, while the GPU is responsible for graphics performance. This ensures that your gaming PC can run games efficiently.
1. Graphics Card (GPU)
A Graphics Card (GPU) is critical for building a gaming PC. It is responsible for rendering the images on your monitor.
A powerful GPU can provide smooth and immersive visuals, allowing you to enjoy the full experience of your favorite games.
When selecting a GPU, it’s important to consider its memory, processing speed, and cost. Memory determines how much data can be stored in the card, while processing speed determines how quickly it can render images.
The cost will vary depending on your type of GPU and its features. Select one that fits your budget and meets your gaming needs.
Which are the Best Brands in the Market?
They are several brands in the market offering GPUs for gaming PCs. Some of the most popular ones include NVIDIA, AMD, and Intel.
Each brand offers a diverse range of GPUs, so research and compare the different products before purchasing.
NVIDIA is known for offering some of the best GPUs with advanced features, while AMD provides budget-friendly GPUs with decent performance. Intel is a popular brand that offers a wide range of GPUs for different budgets.
Some of the best series from NVIDIA, AMD, and Intel include the GeForce RTX 20 series, Radeon RX 5000 series, and Core i7 processors. These GPUs offer impressive performance and can take your gaming experience to the next level.
How much does GPU cost? Depending on the card’s features and performance, you can spend $200 to $3,500 or more on a GPU.
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2. Central Processing Unit (CPU)
A Central Processing Unit (CPU) is an essential component of any gaming PC. It acts as the computer’s brain, executing instructions from programs and driving other components to perform user commands.
CPUs typically comprise a main memory, control unit, and input/output (I/O) ports. The fastest desktop CPU on the market is the AMD FX-4130, which has a base clock speed of 3.8GHz and can be overclocked to a rate of 5.2GHz.
When buying a CPU for gaming, it’s important to consider factors such as core count and thermal design power (TDP).
Quad-core processors are ideal for gaming as they offer more processing power than dual-core processors while still being cost-effective.
TDP measures how much heat a processor dissipates under any workload, so choosing one with an appropriate TDP rating for your needs is important.
CPU contains integrated GPU, which can perform GPU work but is less efficient than dedicated GPU.
Which is the best brand for CPU? Intel and AMD are the two leading brands when it comes to CPUs. Both offer a range of processors for different budgets.
Intel’s Core i5 and Core i7 are the most popular choices for gaming PCs, as they offer excellent performance and are relatively affordable.
AMD’s Ryzen 5 and Ryzen 7 are the brand’s best offerings for gaming PCs, as they offer excellent performance and are also quite affordable.
How much does CPU cost? Depending on the processor’s features and performance, you can spend anywhere from $100 to $900+ on a CPU.
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A motherboard is a core component when building a gaming machine. It is the main circuit board that connects all other components. A good motherboard should have enough ports to accommodate all your needs and support the latest technologies.
It should also be compatible with your CPU and other components. When choosing a motherboard, consider factors such as form, chipset, memory type, expansion slots, etc. With the right motherboard, you can build an amazing gaming PC that lasts years.
Which is the best brand for the motherboard? Asus, Gigabyte, MSI, and ASRock are some of the most popular brands. They offer a wide range of motherboards with various features and at different price points.
Asus is known for its high-end motherboards, while Gigabyte offers budget-friendly models with fewer features. MSI and ASRock are known for offering mid-range motherboards with a good balance of features and affordability.
How much does the motherboard cost? You can spend anywhere from $120 to $500+ on a motherboard, depending on the features and performance you’re looking for. When choosing a motherboard, it’s important to consider your needs and budget.
Before buying them, you need to ensure the compatibility of all components, like the motherboard should be compatible with your CPU and other components.
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4. Random Access Memory (RAM)
RAM is a type of computer memory that stores data temporarily, allowing the processor to access it quickly.
Without enough RAM, your gaming PC won’t be able to run games efficiently. The amount of RAM you need depends on the type of games you play and how often you play them.
Generally speaking, 8GB or more is recommended for most gamers. If you’re playing more intensive games like first-person shooters or open-world RPGs, 16GB or more may be necessary.
When shopping for RAM, look for DDR4 memory sticks with high clock speeds, such as 3200 MHz or higher. Additionally, make sure your motherboard is compatible with the type and size of RAM you choose.
Having enough RAM can make a big difference in your gaming experience. With enough RAM, your PC can run games smoothly without any lag or stuttering.
So if you want to build a powerful gaming PC, don’t forget to include plenty of RAM!
Which is the best brand for RAM? Corsair, G.Skill, and Kingston are some of the most popular brands when it comes to RAM. All three offer a range of RAM modules at different prices, so you can easily find the right one for your budget.
There are different configurations of RAM. This includes:
- 1×8: 8GB – $35
- 2×8: 16GB – $70
- 2×16: 32GB – $120-150
- 4×8: 32GB – $160
- 4×16: 64GB – $275
How much does RAM cost? Depending on the size, clock speed, and brand you choose should be compatible with your other components. The range price is $35-250.
5. SSD / HDD
When building a gaming PC, you must decide between a Solid State Drive (SSD) or Hard Disk Drive (HDD).
Both have advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to understand the differences before deciding.
An SSD storage device uses non-volatile memory chips instead of spinning disks. This makes them much faster than HDDs, as they can access data almost instantly.
They also use less power and generate less heat, making them ideal for gaming PCs. However, they are more expensive than HDDs and come in smaller sizes.
HDDs are traditional spinning disk drives that use magnetic media to store data. They are slower than SSDs but offer more storage space for the same price.
They also require more power and generate more heat, which can be an issue if you’re trying to build a quiet gaming PC.
The main difference between SSDs and HDDs is speed. An SSD can access data almost instantly, while an HDD takes longer due to its spinning disks.
This makes an SSD the best choice if you want your games to load quickly or if you’re running intensive applications like video editing software.
On the other hand, an HDD might be a better option if you don’t need fast loading times, as it offers more storage space for the same price.
In terms of performance, both types of drives offer great results when used correctly. An SSD will give you faster loading times, while an HDD will provide more storage space for the same price point.
It’s important to consider what type of performance you need from your drive when deciding which one is right for you.
SATA Ports & Sizes
Another factor to consider when choosing between an SSD and HDD is how many SATA ports your motherboard has available and what size drive you need for your system requirements.
Most motherboards come with at least two SATA ports but some may have four or even six, depending on the model and manufacturer.
Regarding size, most motherboards support 2TB drives, but some may support up to 8TB, depending on the model and manufacturer.
HDDs are generally cheaper than SSDs due to their larger capacity and lower production costs.
However, prices have been dropping over the past few years, so getting an affordable SSD with plenty of storage space for your gaming needs is now possible.
How much it should cost you: If your pocket allows, for a gaming PC, an SSD is recommended. The price starts from $50 to $400. A good 2TB HDD will cost you around $200.
The same in HDD will be much cheaper as you will only need to pay less than 100 dollars. But what should make us pay more?
The answer is speed. So if you are a serious gamer and want to enjoy games without any lag, an SSD is recommended for your gaming PC.
So don’t just go for the cheapest option — consider what you need from your storage device and choose the right one. By understanding the differences between SSDs and HDDs, you can be sure to make the right decision for your gaming PC.
6. Power Supply (PSU)
Building a gaming PC requires more than just selecting the right components. The power supply unit (PSU) is one of the most important components.
A PSU is responsible for providing power to all the components in your system, and it plays a significant role in determining your system’s reliability.
When selecting a PSU, you should consider its wattage output, efficiency rating, form factor, and modularity. The wattage output of a PSU determines how much power it can provide to your system.
Generally speaking, if you have a powerful gaming PC with multiple GPUs and hard drives, you’ll need at least 600-650 watts of power.
The efficiency rating of a PSU indicates how much energy it can convert into usable power.
The higher the efficiency rating, the less energy will be wasted as heat. Look for PSUs with an 80 Plus certification or higher for maximum efficiency.
The form factor of a PSU refers to its physical size and shape. Most modern PSUs come in ATX form factors, but other sizes are available, such as SFX or TFX form factors, which are smaller than ATX PSUs but also more expensive.
Modularity refers to whether or not the cables from the PSU are detachable or fixed in place.
Modular PSUs allow you to detach unused cables from the unit so that they don’t take up space inside your case, while non-modular PSUs have all their cables permanently attached to them which can lead to clutter inside your case.
How much it should cost you: A good quality power supply will cost anywhere from $50 to $200, depending on the wattage output, efficiency rating, form factor, and modularity.
It is important that you buy a quality PSU to ensure the reliability of your gaming PC.
Read On: Corsair RM vs RMX
7. Computer Cases
Now that you are bout to finish shopping for all the components for your gaming PC, it’s time to find a computer case that will house all these parts.
Choosing a case with good airflow, plenty of space for components, and looks great is important.
A computer case is a box that houses all of your components. It protects your hardware and helps keep it cool. It adds to the overall look of your gaming setup.
Many cases are available, ranging from small form factor cases to full-tower cases with lots of room for expansion.
The size of the case you choose will depend on your available space and the type of components you plan on using.
Smaller cases are great for those who don’t need much space or want something more compact, while larger cases provide more room for expansion and cooling options.
Good airflow is essential for keeping your system cool and preventing overheating.
Look for cases with plenty of fan mounts and air vents that allow air to flow freely through the system. This will help ensure your components stay cool during intense gaming sessions.
You need to think about aesthetics when selecting a computer case. Many gamers like to show off their rigs with custom lighting or other modifications, so finding a good and functional case is important.
There are many different styles available, from sleek modern designs to classic retro looks, so there’s sure to be something out there that fits your style perfectly.
Finally, consider any additional features you may need when selecting a computer case, such as USB ports or audio jacks.
These can come in handy if you connect external devices, such as headsets or game controllers, directly to your PC without going through an adapter or hub first.
How much it should cost you: A good quality computer case can range anywhere from $50 to $200, depending on the size, features, and design.
Choosing the right computer case is an important part of building a gaming PC, as it helps protect your hardware and keeps everything running smoothly during intense gaming sessions.
When selecting one, consider size, airflow, aesthetics, and additional features to get the best possible experience out of your rig!
8. CPU Cooler
A CPU cooler is essential to any gaming PC build. It helps keep the processor from overheating, which can cause performance issues and even permanent damage to the system.
The type of cooler you choose will depend on your budget and the type of processor you have installed.
The most common types of coolers are air coolers and liquid coolers. Air coolers use a fan to draw air over a heatsink that dissipates heat from the processor.
They are usually cheaper than liquid coolers but can be louder and may not be as effective at cooling high-end processors.
Liquid coolers use a pump to circulate liquid around a radiator that dissipates heat away from the processor. They tend to be more expensive than air coolers, but they are quieter and more effective at cooling high-end processors.
When choosing a CPU cooler, it’s important to consider its compatibility with your motherboard and case. Some cases may not have enough room for larger air or liquid coolers, so check the dimensions before purchasing.
Additionally, some motherboards may only support certain coolers, such as Intel’s LGA 1151 socket, which only supports air coolers or AMD’s AM4 socket, which only supports liquid coolers.
It’s also important to consider how much noise you will tolerate when selecting a cooler for your gaming PC build. Air coolers are louder than liquid coolers because their fans spin faster to move more air over the heatsink.
If noise is an issue for you, it might be worth investing in a liquid cooler instead of an air cooler to reduce noise levels while still providing adequate cooling performance for your system.
How much money will you spend on a CPU cooler for your gaming PC build? If you’re on a tight budget, then an entry-level air cooler might be sufficient to control temperatures in most situations.
But if you want maximum cooling performance, investing in a higher-end liquid cooler might be worth considering – especially if you plan to overclock your processor for better performance.
How much should I spend: A good quality CPU cooler can range anywhere from $20 to $100 depending on the type, size, and features.
Choosing the right CPU cooler for your gaming PC build is essential if you want optimal performance from your system without overheating or becoming too loud due to excessive fan speeds.
Make sure you research all available options before purchasing to find one that fits your budget and desired noise levels while providing adequate cooling performance for your system.
9. Case Fans
Building a gaming PC can be intimidating, especially if you’re new to the process. The case fan is one of the most important components of any gaming PC. Case fans are essential for keeping your computer cool and running at optimal performance.
Case fans come in various sizes and shapes, with airflow, RGB lighting, and noise output capabilities. When selecting a case fan for your gaming PC, it’s important to consider all three factors.
Airflow is one of the most important considerations when selecting a case fan for your gaming PC. The more air that is pushed through your system, the cooler it will stay and the better it will perform.
Look for fans with high ratings of CFM (cubic feet per minute), as these will move more air than lower-rated fans.
RGB lighting is another factor to consider when selecting a case fan for your gaming PC. Many modern fans come with built-in LED lights that can be customized to match your setup or provide additional illumination inside your case.
While this isn’t necessary for performance purposes, it can add a layer of customization to your build.
Noise output should also be considered when selecting a case fan for your gaming PC. Fans with higher CFM ratings tend to be louder than those with lower ratings, so look for models that offer good airflow without being too loud or disruptive during gameplay sessions.
How much should I spend: Quality case fans can range from $45 to $100 depending on features and size.
Selecting the right case fan for your gaming PC is an important task that can greatly impact your system’s overall performance and looks.
Consider all factors before purchasing and choose one that fits your budget and desired noise levels while providing adequate cooling performance.
Peripherals are essential accessories for any gaming PC. They give the user better control, comfort, and accuracy when playing games, making them an integral part of any setup. Various peripherals are available today, so knowing your needs is important before purchasing. Below are the basic types of peripherals that you should consider for your gaming PC.
A good keyboard is essential for any serious gamer. Mechanical keyboards offer the best performance, with each keystroke registering accurately and quickly.
They also have tactile feedback that makes them more enjoyable to use than membrane keyboards.
Mechanical keyboards come in various sizes and styles, so you can find one that fits your needs and budget. Prices range from around $50 for basic models to $200 for high-end models with extra features like RGB lighting or macro keys.
A good mouse is just as important as a good keyboard regarding gaming performance. A mouse with adjustable DPI (dots per inch) settings allows you to customize the sensitivity of the cursor movement on your screen.
This is especially useful for first-person shooter games where precision aiming is essential.
You’ll also want to look for a mouse with an ergonomic design that fits comfortably in your hand and has enough buttons for all your game commands.
Prices range from around $20 to several hundred dollars for high-end models with extra features like adjustable weights or wireless connectivity.
iii. Tactile Switches
Tactile switches are small devices that attach to the underside of your keyboard keys and provide physical feedback when pressed. This helps you feel when you’ve pressed a key without looking at the keyboard, making it easier and faster to type or play games without taking your eyes off the screen.
Prices range from around $10-$100 depending on how many switches you need and what type of switch you choose (mechanical vs membrane).
They are essential for any serious gamer who wants an immersive audio experience while playing their favourite games.
Look for headphones with noise cancellation technology so you don’t get distracted by outside noises while playing online multiplayer games or streaming content on Twitch or YouTube Gaming.
You will have to dig deep into your pocket to get the best audio quality, as most high-end gaming headphones come at a hefty price tag. You can pay as low as $30 to $500 for a good set of headphones.
v. Gaming Controllers
Playing a game needs precise and accurate control, which can’t be achieved with a mouse and keyboard. This is where gaming controllers come in.
They provide the user with tactile feedback, which makes them more enjoyable to use than a mouse and keyboard.
Joysticks and gaming pads are great accessories for flight simulators or racing games where precise control is essential for success.
Look for ones with adjustable sensitivity settings to customize how much input each joystick movement or button press requires, depending on the game.
Do you know how much you can spend? Gaming controllers can range from as low as $20 up to several hundred for high-end models.
vi. External GPU (eGPU)
External GPUs are a relatively new technology that allows you to connect your laptop or desktop computer to an external GPU enclosure.
This allows users to use the extra graphical processing power in a dedicated GPU that would not fit inside their computer. This can be especially useful for gamers who want to take their gaming experience to the next level with high-end graphics and visuals.
Depending on your chosen components, you can spend anywhere from $200 to several thousand dollars for an eGPU setup.
Now we have just completed getting the other components, it is time to get a monitor. A good monitor can enhance your gaming experience by providing better visuals and image quality. Before you choose your monitors, consider the following factors to get the best bang for your buck.
The resolution of a monitor determines how sharp and detailed images appear on the screen.
The most commonly used resolutions are 1080p (1920 x 1080), 1440p (2560 x 1440), and 4K (3840 x 2160). Generally speaking, higher resolutions offer better image quality but require more powerful hardware to run smoothly.
The refresh rate is the number of times the display refreshes its image per second. A higher refresh rate allows for smoother motion and less input lag. Most gaming monitors have a refresh rate of 60Hz or 144Hz, but some can go up to 240Hz or even higher.
While playing your game, you want to take all the action; this is where response time comes in. Response time is typically measured in milliseconds (ms) and indicates how quickly the monitor can react to the input.
A lower response time will result in a more responsive and immersive gaming experience. Lower response times result in less ghosting and blurring, which can benefit fast-paced games like first-person shooters. Most gaming monitors have a response time of 1ms or lower.
The panel type affects the image quality and viewing angles of the display. The two most common panels used in gaming monitors are TN (twisted nematic) and IPS (in-plane switching).
TN panels have better response times and higher refresh rates but suffer from poor color accuracy and viewing angles. On the other hand, IPS panels have excellent color reproduction and viewing angles but tend to be more expensive and have slower response times.
A larger monitor with higher resolution will provide a more immersive experience when playing games, but it also comes at a cost.
You should consider LCD or OLED display, as each has benefits and drawbacks. Additionally, you should look for features such as refresh rate and response time to ensure smooth performance during gameplay.
The most common connections are HDMI, DisplayPort, and DVI-D; however, some monitors may also support USB-C or Thunderbolt 3 connections.
It’s important to make sure that your graphics card supports the type of connection you choose to get the best performance out of your gaming PC.
Flat vs Curved Design
Curved monitors provide an immersive experience by wrapping around your field of view; however, they tend to be more expensive than flat monitors and may require additional hardware, such as mounting brackets or stands to set them up properly.
Flat monitors are typically less expensive and easier to set up but don’t provide as immersive an experience as curved ones.
Built-In Speakers & Adjustable Stands
Some gaming monitors come with built-in speakers, which can be useful if you don’t want to invest in external speakers for your setup.
Still, they usually don’t provide as good sound quality as dedicated speakers do, so keep that in mind when making your decision.
Additionally, many gaming monitors come with adjustable stands that allow you to adjust your monitor’s height and tilt angle for maximum comfort while gaming or working at your desk.
G-Sync & FreeSync Support
G-Sync and FreeSync are technologies developed by Nvidia and AMD, respectively, that reduce screen tearing by synchronizing the display’s refresh rate with the GPU outputting it, thus eliminating any stuttering or tearing during gameplay resulting in smoother visuals overall.
If you’re using an Nvidia GPU, you’ll need a G-Sync compatible display, while if you’re using an AMD GPU, you’ll need a FreeSync compatible display, so make sure you check this before buying a new monitor for your setup!
How much you a good monitor cost you? For a low entry with decent specs, you can spend around $200 to $400.
However, if you’re looking for the best, you can expect to spend anywhere from $400 to over $1000 for a top-of-the-line gaming monitor with all the bells and whistles.
It’s important to consider the type of games you play and your hardware setup before investing in a gaming monitor to maximize your purchase.
You need to get well prepared if you want to know how much it costs to build a PC to build your PC. Building a PC depends on several factors, such as the type of components used, their quality, and the shipping cost and taxes.
The average cost for building a mid-range PC is around $800 – $1,000. But if you opt for high-end components and accessories, it could cost you upwards of $2,000.
Additionally, you can save money by shopping for components and accessories on sale. However, if you are still deciding what to buy or how to assemble the parts, it would be safer and more cost-effective to hire an IT professional to build your PC would be safer and more cost-effective.
Building a PC does not have to be expensive; with the above guide on how much does it cost to build a PC for gaming, you can build your own PC without breaking the bank. Good luck!