The Best Gaming PC Builds – May 2018
Jump to a specific budget build –
May 2018 Gaming PC Builds of the Month
Here is where you will find the best May 2018 gaming PC builds for several budgets between $700, $1000, $1600 and above. All the below budget builds are geared towards various performance levels of pc gameplay depending on the resolution you expect to be playing at. Such as if you are looking for a gaming pc to simply play at 1080p at 60hz, then you should be looking for a build between the $700 to $1000 range.
I finally feel that this month things are getting much better in the graphics card side of things in terms of actually being able to buy the higher end card. Basically where we’ve been at for the last while is that the higher end card were being bought up by the cryptomining craze, leaving supply of such hardware ill-available to us gaming pc builders.
Another fantastically exciting update this month is AMD’s release of it’s super performing Ryzen 7 2700X cpu, which makes an appearance in this month best gaming pc build in the $1600 budget build below. This cpu basically matches the performance of the previously included Intel i7 8700K, except it has eight cores instead of Intel’s six and 16-threads rather than the 8700K’s 12-threads. This made it an obvious well-deserved inclusion by AMD.
I hope you enjoy the best May 2018 gaming pc builds of the month, and if you are building a brand new pc build, I commend you and wish you the best of luck. If you have any questions about the gaming pc you’re planning to build or to spark a conversation, leave a comment below!
$1600 Best Gaming PC Build 2018
Performance: Game with Extreme settings and High FPS at resolutions of 1920×1080 (1080P) & 2560×1440 (1440p) + good gameplay at 4K
*This PC Build is powered by the AMD Ryzen 7 2700K CPU and GTX 1080 GPU
|Cooler||*Included: The cpu comes with a Wrath Prism RGB Cooler
Need more cooling – see alternatives table below.
|Motherboard||GIGABYTE X470 AORUS ULTRA GAMING (AMD Ryzen AM4/ X470/ USB 3.1 Gen 2 Front Type C/ ATX/ DDR4/ Motherboard)||$139.99|
|Graphics Card||GTX 1080 – Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1080 Windforce OC GV-N1080WF3OC-8GD Graphics Cards||$579.99|
|SSD||SanDisk SSD PLUS 480GB Solid State Drive (SDSSDA-480G-G26) [Newest Version]||$109.99|
|Power Supply||Corsair RMx Series, RM750x, 750W, Fully Modular Power Supply, 80 PLUS Gold Certified||$129.99|
|Computer Case||NZXT S340 Mid Tower Computer Case, Glossy Black (CA-S340W-B1)||$69.99|
|Estimated Price :||$1521 – (2018)
Overview: Best Gaming PC Build for $1600
May 2018 Update: This month we have so many amazing updates to the $1600 gaming pc build. First, AMD released it’s so very awesome Ryzen 7 2700X, which now replaces the previous Intel i7 8700K and with that AMD released brand new X470 chipset motherboards, which we have also included. There is also a larger supply of GTX 1080 graphics cards now, which is great news for those of you who’ve been waiting to actually building a higher-end gaming pc build.
The AMD Ryzen 7 2700X cpu is a part of the 2nd gen of Ryzen chip comes in with eight cores and 16 threads and is cheaper than the previous cpu that held this spot – the Intel i7-8700K. This makes the inclusion of the CPU a no brainer. Not to mention, we no longer need to include a CPU cooler as it also comes with a decent Wrath Prism (with RGB lights) cpu cooler. And should you want to upgrade to something like a higher-perfoming liquid cpu cooler, you now have more funds to do so (see the hardware alternatives tables below).
The graphics card recommended for this gaming pc build is the GTX 1080, and this month (so far) you can actually purchase one as there seems to be some available for purchase. And as previously mentioned, this wasn’t the case in previous months due to the cryptomining craze.
Another exciting new piece of hardware this month is a brand spanking new X470 chipset motherboard with the inclusion of the new AMD Ryzen CPU. Included in this May 2018 gaming pc build is the GIGABYTE X470 AORUS ULTRA GAMING motherboard. This motherboard basically has more than most gamers with probably utilize including (see the full list of features at gigabyte.com):
- Supports AMD Ryzen™ 2nd Generation/ Ryzen™ with Radeon™ Vega Gaphics/ Ryzen™ 1stGeneration/ 7th Generation A-Series/ Athlon™ X4 Processors
- Dual Channel Non-ECC Unbuffered DDR4, 4 DIMMs
- 8+3 Phase Hybrid Digital PWM Design
- 2-Way CrossFire/ SLI Graphics Support with Dual Armor and Ultra Durable™ Design
- ALC1220-VB Enhance 114dB(Rear)/ 110dB(Front) SNR in Microphone with WIMA Audio Capacitors
- Dual Ultra-Fast M.2 with NVMe PCIe X4 with One Thermal Guard
- RGB FUSION with Multi-zone LED Light Show Design, Supports Digital LED & RGB LED Strips
- Intel® Ethernet LAN with cFOS Speed Internet Accelerator
- USB DAC-UP 2 with Adjustable Voltage
- Anti-Sulfur Resistors Design
- Ultra Durable™ 25KV ESD and 15KV Surge LAN Protection
- CEC 2019 Ready, Save Power with a Single Click
Included in the high-end build is 16GB total in memory, a kit of two 8GB sticks of Ballistix Sport LT memory. RAM prices have been and are all over the place due to an assumed apply and demand issue. But we do have to accept this for now.
Our storage solution, is a SanDisk Plus 480 GB SSD – plenty of space to get started with your build. If you think you want to milk as much speed and performance as possible you could also opt for a PCIe SSD, for a a larger cost, but if you have the cash it may be worth it.
The included power supplt unit (PSU) this month is the fully modular, gold rated Corsair RMx series RM750x psu. This has enough juice for this gaming pc build and is a highly reputable unit.
The included pc case the well reputed the NZXT S340 (specifically, the Matte Black — this case also comes in blue or red color options). I absolutely love the aesthetic of this case (and all the S340’s), one that just boasts confidence in style and quality. To learn more please visit the product page at NZXT.com.
2018 Best $1800 PC Build Upgrade Suggestions
EVGA SuperNOVA 750 P2, 80+ PLATINUM 750W , Fully Modular , EVGA ECO Mode, 10 Year Warranty , Includes FREE Power On Self Tester, Power Supply 220-P2-0750-X1 – Higher Efficiency Power Supply
|GRAPHICS CARD UPGRADE||GTX 1080 Ti: Check NVIDIA.com for availability *For the best possible 4K gaming experience||$699.99|
|CPU COOLER UPGRADE||
Purchase a liquid CPU cooler (*Highly recommended for Overclocking the CPU to it’s potential): Corsair Hydro Series H100i v2 Extreme Performance Liquid CPU Cooler CW-9060025-WW
PCIe SSD (faster): Plextor M8Pe 512GB M.2 PCIe NVMe Solid-State Drive with Heatsink (PX-512M8PeG
The hardware upgrades you see above are recommendations for the best May 2018 gaming PC builds $1600 build. That is if you have more cash to spend or want upgrade ideas, here they are.
For those who are concerned about or want a highly efficient power supply, you could go with the Platinum rated EVGA SuperNOVA 750 P2 — it costs more than the included psu but is more power efficient.
The above pc build does include an SSD, which is perfectly suited for most gamers and pc builders, but if someone were searching for the fastest and one of the most efficient methods of storage, you could consider a premium PCIe Solid State Drive, such as the Plextor 512Gb M.2 PCIe SSD above.
If you want more than the included air cpu cooler included in the main build, then above is the Corsair Hydro Series H100i V2 liquid cpu cooler. This cooler would be a substitute for the stock AMD Wrath Prism cpu cooler, should you feel you need it.
The final upgrade you see above is a GeForce GTX 1080 Ti (you can purchase directly from nvidia.com), which perform really well for those high-end resolutions, and is said to have epic 4K performance (search benchmarks for specific games to see how it performs at the resolutions you want to play at).
$1000 Best Gaming PC Build 2018
Capability: Game with Extreme settings at 1920X1080 resolutions up to Higher Settings at 2560×1440 (2K)
Powered by the Intel i5 8600K and the GTX 1060 6Gb Graphics Card
|Estimated Price:||$925.43 (2018)|
|Processor||Intel BX80684I58400 8th Gen Core i5-8400 Processor
|GTX 1060 6GB: PNY NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB XLR8 Gaming Overclocked Graphics Card VCGGTX10606XGPB-OC2||$320.00|
|Power Supply||EVGA 650 GQ, 80+ GOLD 650W, Semi Modular, EVGA ECO Mode, 5 Year Warranty, Power Supply 210-GQ-0650-V1||$69.99|
Overview: $1000 Best Gaming PC Build 2018
May 2018 Update: For May, the best $1000 gaming pc build The $1000 build uses an Intel i5 8400 cpu along with a compatible Z370 motherboard, but if you wanted an unlocked cpu and had a little more to spend you could try for an Intel i5 8600K. The only change seen this month is the actual availability of the GTX 1060 6Gb graphics card, as higher-end cards have finally gone up in supply and down in cost to a more reasonable value.
The included processor is an Intel i5 8400, a great choice now as the cost for this cpu has come down a tad along with more budget conscious Z370 motherboards. If you have a little more to spend on the cpu, check the alternatives tables below where we include the Intel i5 8600K, which gives you more performance potential.
The included graphics card is a GTX 1060 6GB, which will provide you with great 1080P performance and even good 1440p performance, which makes this a perfect choice for the mid-range gaming pc build.
The motherboard included in the $1000 gaming pc build is the MSI Z370 GAMING PLUS CFX, which is fully compatible with the included Intel i5 8400 CPU and comes with the following specifications (learn more at MSI.com):
- Supports 8th Gen Intel® CoreTM / Pentium® Celeron® processors for LGA 1151 socket
- Supports DDR4 Memory, up to 4000+(OC) MHz
- Lightning Fast Game experience: 1x TURBO M.2, Intel Optane Memory Ready.
- AUDIO BOOST: Reward your ears with studio grade sound quality for the most immersive gaming experience
- DDR4 Boost: Fully isolated, shielded and optimized DDR4 PCB design to give your DDR4 memory a performance boost.
- GAMING LAN, powered by Intel®: The best online gaming experience with lowest latency and bandwidth management.
- MULTI-GPU: With STEEL ARMOR PCI-E slots. Supports 2-Way AMD Crossfire™
- VR Ready: Best virtual reality game experience without latency, reduces motion sickness
- Military Class 5, Guard-Pro: Latest evolution with high quality Japanese components for best protection and efficiency
- In-Game Weapons: Game Boost, GAMING Hotkey, X-Boost, WTFast
- EZ Debug LED: Easiest way to troubleshoot
- Click BIOS 5: Award-winning BIOS with high resolution scalable font, favorites and search function
- GAMING CERTIFIED: 24-hour on- and offline game and motherboard testing by eSports players
The RAM included is the affordable kit of Kingston HyperX Fury 8Gb kit, which is enough memory for most gaming pc builds, and you always have the option to upgrade more in the future if need be with the extra couple of slots on the included motherboard. RAM prices are a little unpredictable these days due to supply and demand issues (or so I’ve heard), so you can try to look for the best deal on a 8GB kit of 2X 4Gb sticks of ram and you will be fine.
For this pc builds storage, we have a SK Hynix 256GB SSD, which is a great value SSD. Should you want more than the 250GB, then you can look at the high-end build for another SSD option as well or in the hardware alternatives table below.
The included power supply unit used in this months $1000 pc build was the EVGA SuperNOVA G1 650W power supply, but for some reason the cost shot up this month. What we instead have for a psu this month is the EVGA 650 GQ, 80+ GOLD, which has a similar quality, however it is only semi-modular, which means some of the cords are permanently attached to the psu (rather than detachable). If you can find the EVGA G1 for a similar or lesser cost then my suggestion would be to go with that.
We have a brand new PC case this month, which is the Cooler Master MasterBox Lite 5 RGB. This spiffy case brings affordable style with customizable trim colors, great case cooling performance and plenty of room for all of your gaming pc hardware. Learn more about the Cooler Master Masterbox 5 RGB on the coolermaster.com website.
2018 Best $1000 PC Build Upgrade Suggestions
|CPU UPDGRADE||Add a Better CPU: Intel BX80684I58600K 8th Gen Core i5-8600K Processor||$238.99|
|GRAPHICS CARD UPGRADE||GTX 1070: EVGA GeForce GTX 1070 SC GAMING ACX 3.0 Black Edition, 8GB GDDR5, LED, DX12 OSD Support (PXOC) 08G-P4-5173-KR||$499.99|
|PSU UPGRADE||Upgrade to a Platinum Efficient Fully Modular Power Supply – EVGA SuperNOVA 650 P2, 80+ PLATINUM 650W , Fully Modular , EVGA ECO Mode, 10 Year Warranty , Includes FREE Power On Self Tester, Power Supply 220-P2-0650-X1||$139.99|
|CPU COOLER UPGRADE||Corsair Hydro Series H80i v2 Extreme Performance Liquid CPU Cooler , Black- Add a liquid CPU Cooler for quieter, more customized and efficient cooling experience.
Above are the upgrade ideas for the best May 2018 $1000 gaming PC build, these are recommended if you have a larger budget or want some upgrade suggestions later on.
There is a CPU upgrade included this month to act as an upgrade to the above Intel i5 8400, with the upgraded cpu being the Intel i5 8600K. The 8600K gives you the potential to further overclock your cpu for a slightly higher cost. You do have to keep in mind though that if you go with the 8600K, you will need to add a cpu cooler (such as the Cooler Master Hyper 212).
For the best in terms of a performance boost, you could consider going straight for a GTX 1070 or GTX 1070 ti graphics card, which could max those games out in 2K resolutions without a problem, which will enable higher frame rates in more demanding games.
You could also go with a liquid cpu cooler such as the Corsair Hydro Series H80i V2 in place of the included air cooler already included in the above build above. This could help keep things quiet and a tad cooler when overclocking and it offers a more customize cooling experience.
I have also included a PSU upgrade, the EVGA 650Watt P2, which is a Platinum rated Power Supply Unit giving you an extra boost in power efficiency, which could save a tad on power as it uses it more efficiently.
$700 Best Gaming PC Build 2018
Capability: Game at Smoothly with High settings and FPS at 1920X1080 resolutions in most games.
|Estimated Price:||$656.93 (2018)|
(Comes with Wraith Spire CPU Cooler)
|Motherboard||GIGABYTE GA-AB350-Gaming AMD RYZEN AM4 B350 SMART FAN 5 HDMI M.2 SATA USB 3.1 Type-A ATX DDR4 Motherboard||$89.99|
|Graphics Card||GTX 1050 Ti: MSI Computer V809-2277R Video Card (GTX 1050 TI 4GT OC)||$189.99|
|RAM||Kingston HyperX FURY Black 8GB Kit (2x4GB) 2133MHz DDR4 Non-ECC CL14 DIMM Desktop Memory (HX421C14FBK2/8)||$94.99|
|SSD||Kingston Digital, Inc. 120GB A400 SATA 3 2.5 Solid State Drive||$41.99|
|Power Supply||Corsair CX Series, CX500, 500 Watt (500W) Power Supply, 80+ Bronze Certified||$44.99|
|Computer Case||Corsair Carbide Series 270R – Mid-Tower ATX Case, Windowed Cases CC-9011105-WW||$54.99|
Overview: Gaming PC Build 2018
May 2018 Updates: Not much to update with regards to the best $700 gaming pc build for May, but overall the cost for the build is lower (much lower than $700). The type of GTX 1050 ti has changed simply due to a lower cost for the MSI version you see above and the pc case has changed to a Corsair Carbide 270R as the previous Thermaltake is no longer in stock.
The best $700 gaming PC build for 2018 is able to game smoothly at 1080p resolutions in most games on higher settings. Most general gamers will most likely be gaming on a 1080p monitor and this will actually be all they need to play the games they want to play. Plus this is a great build to consider if you are new to the pc building community. *Please note that the entry level gaming pc build slot used to be considered a $600 build, however to keep up with price fluctuations and providing performance expected out of a gaming pc, the budget had to increase a little.
The CPU for the 2018 $700 PC build to a Ryzen 5 1400. This is currently the best cost per performance solution for this budget and if you want a cpu upgrade you can get a Ryzen 5 1600 for about $30 more.
For the graphics card we have a GTX 1050 Ti graphics card, which is a great gpu that provides you with good 1080p game play. If you need to further boost your graphics performance you can think about getting a GTX 1060 3GB card, or the same GTX 1060 6GB as seen in the best $1000 gaming pc build above.
For the motherboard we had to include a new one to accommodate the inclusion of our Ryzen CPU, so this month we have gone with the plain GIGABYTE GA-AB350-Gaming. This motherboard is a variant of the one included in the $1000 pc build above and has the following specification (Gigabyte.com):
- Supports AMD Ryzen™ & 7th Generation A-series/ Athlon™ Processors
- Dual Channel Non-ECC Unbuffered DDR4, 4 DIMMs
- Fast 2 USB 3.1 Gen 2 with USB Type-A
- 2-Way CrossFire™ Multi-Graphics Support
- Ultra-Fast PCIe Gen3 x4 M.2 with PCIe NVMe & SATA mode support
- High Quality Audio Capacitors and Audio Noise Guard with LED Trace Path Lighting
- Realtek® Gigabit LAN with cFosSpeed Internet Accelerator Software
- Smart Fan 5 features 6 Temperature Sensors and 4 Hybrid Fan Headers
- GIGABYTE UEFI DualBIOS™
- APP Center Including EasyTune™ and Cloud Station™ Utilities
The RAM included is a kit of Kingsten HyperX Fury (the same as in the $1000 pc build) which is enough memory for most gaming pc builds, and you always have the option to upgrade more in the future if need be with the extra couple of slots on the included motherboard.
The storage included is a Kingston Digital 120GB solid state drive SSD. This is a great start in terms of storage speed and capacity, however if you do think you’ll need more storage right away, you could consider a 256Gb or larger SSD as well (look at any of the builds in this article or in the hardware alternatives table for suggestions).
To actually provided power in this pc build, we have the reputable and affordable Corsair CX Series, CX500, with enough juice to power this build and for a good cost.
The gaming pc case included this month is the Corsair Carbide Series 270R, which was officially release about two years ago as high-performing small gaming chasis. This is a streamline case that screams sleek simplicity. Looking for a bang up review of this case — then head over to guru3d.com for their full robust write-up.
2018 $700 Best PC Build Upgrade Suggestions
|CASE UPGRADE||Upgrade your case: BitFenix Enso Black, ATX/mATX/Mini ITX Mid Tower Case – Tempered Glass Window, Alchemy 3.0 Addressable Asus AURA SYNC RGB LED Design with Controller -BFC-ENS-150-KKWGK-RP||$89.00|
|GRAPHICS CARD UPGRADE||GTX 1060 3GB: Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1060 Windforce OC 3GB GDDR5 Graphics Card||$259.99|
|CPU UPGRADE||AMD Ryzen 5 1600||$176.37|
|STORAGE UPGRADE||SK Hynix Flash Memory 2.5″ 250 GB Internal Solid State Drives HFS250G32TND-N1A2A
Here you will find upgrade suggestions should you have more to spend or want ideas for hardware upgrade when you have the need in the future for the best May 2018 $700 gaming PC build.
For a different style to your pc case we have included yet another newly released PC case, the BitFenix Enso. This case can be a worthy upgrade that has RGB lighting functionality, a windowed side the view your superb hardware and it is painted black inside and out. This option could be for any of the gaming pc’s in this article.
If you are looking for one piece of hardware that will boost the speed of your gaming pc the most, it would be to upgrade your graphics card to a GTX 1060. Do note that at the time of writing this article you do have to head on over to nvidia.com to get your hands on one.
Or if you are looking to spend just a tad more, you could bump your cpu up to an AMD Ryzen 5 1600, which is currently only $175.
You could also increase your storage space by going with a larger capacity SK HYNIX 256Gb SSD or even the 500GB one. This would be recommended if you think you will need more than 120GB as included in the SSD in the base build above.
Operating Systems for Your 2018 Gaming PC Builds
You will need an operating system (OS) for your gaming pc build and If you don’t already have one laying around, then you’re going to have to purchase a standard OS such as Windows 10 or check out some free alternatives that you could consider. Keep in mind that it is recommended to purchase Windows online or as a USB stick and install it that way as optical drives are not included in any of these builds and nor would you generally need one for any modern gaming pc.
Included below is a USB copy of Windows 10, which is probably what most people need. I have also included two other operating systems that are both currently free – so could be worth the time trying out. Ubuntu is a Linux based operating system. The last OS is SteamOS, which is also a Linux OS being developed by Valve Corporation.
|Windows 10||Microsoft Windows 10 Home USB Flash Drive||$99.99|
|Ubuntu||Ubuntu – Desktop||Free|
|SteamOS||SteamOS – “Build your own Steam Machine”||Free|