Budget Gaming PC Builds March 2014 – $600 – $1000 – $1500

Gaming PC Builds – March 2014

Choose your budget –

March 2014 Gaming PC BuildsIntroduction:

Welcome to the new Gaming PC builds for March 2013 – with the $600, $1000 and $1500 builds. If you are here you are either a major PC building geek, wanting to build a new PC or just love to keep in the loop, so read away and remember if you have any questions or comments to leave them in the comment section below.

I did things a tad differently last time around and it has actually been a good two months since I have put out a monthly build article. This is because I did a combined Jan / Feb edition.

To start off – the ultimate determinate of all of the builds still has to do with the wonky price increases with mid range graphics cards. More specifically, with the mid range R9 270 family, which has now been affected along with the other R9 series cards. Nevertheless the builds below have been adjusted to accommodate for any changes and I must say they do kick ass. Also on a positive note, it does seem that RAM has finally decided to come closer to normal pricing. So without any further rambling, let’s get onto the build below

$600 Gaming PC Build of the Month

Monthly Gaming PC Build ( $600 ): March 2014

(Game at Smoothly with Medium – High settings at 1920X1080 resolutions)

Gaming PC Build Recipe:

 
Hardware Link
Estimated Price: $ 600.19
Processor

 

 

AMD FD6300WMHKBOX FX-6300 6-Core Processor Black Edition

 

 

Price: $118.49

Motherboard

 

 

 

 

MSI Computer Corp. Motherboard North Bridge AMD 970 & South Bridge AMD SB950 Chipset ATX DDR3 800 AMD AM3+ Motherboards (970A-G46)
 
 
 
Price: $79.99
Graphics Card

 

 

EVGA EVGA GeForce GTX 750Ti Superclock w/G-SYNC Support 2GB GDDR5 128bit, Dual-Link DVI-I, HDMI, DP 1.2 Graphics (02G-P4-3753-KR) Graphics Cards 02G-P4-3753-KR
 
 
 
 
 
Price: $169.99
RAM

 

 

 

Kingston Hyper X Blu 8 GB (2x4GB Modules) 1600MHz DDR3 Non-ECC CL9 XMP Desktop Memory – KHX1600C9D3B1K2/8GX

 

 

Price: $69.99

Hard Drive

 

WD Blue 1 TB Desktop Hard Drive: 3.5 Inch, 7200 RPM, SATA 6 Gb/s, 64 MB Cache – WD10EZEX

 

Price: $59.99

Power Supply

 

Corsair Builder Series CX 600 Watt ATX/EPS  80 PLUS (CX600)

 

Price: $57.99

Computer Case

 

Rosewill Dual Fans ATX Mid Tower Computer Case FB-03

 

Price: $29.99

Optical Drive

 

LG Electronics 24X SATA Super-Multi DVD Internal Rewriter with M-Disc Support (Black) GH24NS95B

 

Price: $14.49

Overview: $600 Gaming PC Build

A few changes to the $600 build this month, with the major one being the graphics card. Back in Jan. & Feb. I included the R9 270, and believe it or not the price of the exact model I chose went up by about $100…yes what the heck? Good thing NVidia came out with its new awesome performing 60W graphics card – the GeForce GTX 750 Ti. This thing packs some juice for such a low powered card and it is price fairly well.

With the GTX 750Ti graphics card you can expect to get average framerates of 36.2 in games like Battlefield 4 (Toms Hardware – benchmark image), that is on Ultra Settings by the way at 1920×1080 – not too shabby for a $600 build. keep in mind that you may want to set the settings in a game like BF4 down a tad to get the best game play experience, however it does stand strong – check out the other benchmarks here – GeForce GTX 750 Ti Review (Toms Hardware).

We stay with the usual AMD FX 6300 and the same MSI motherboard as they do still fit the bill quite well. The RAM was switched to a 8Gb kit of Kingston HyperX Blu simply due to price. We do have a better PSU this month and one with more power, the Corsair CX 600W. All of that and we have 1TB of space with the Western Digital Blue Hard Drive and a very affordable Rosewill ATX PC Case.

Upgrades / Alternatives for the $600 Gaming PC Build:

The upgrades and alternatives this month include an upgraded eight core AMD FX-8320 processor, a Apevia X-Sniper mid tower case (a few more features then the generic Rosewill case included in the above build), better graphics quality with an Sapphire Radeon 270X graphics card, or a nice boot drive Samsung 840 Pro 128GB solid state drive.

These are here to act as hardware suggestions for those who has either a little more to spend or those who would like

Processor Alternative: AMD FD8320FRHKBOX FX-8320 FX-Series 8-Core Black Edition ($149.99)
Alternative PC Case: Apevia X-Sniper 2 mid tower with large side window, front USB3.0/audio ports – Green ($57.51)
Graphics Card Alternative: Sapphire Radeon VAPOR-X R9 270X 2GB GDDR5 DVI-I/DVI-D/HDMI/DP with Boost and OC Version (UEFI) PCI-Express Graphics Card 11217-00-20G ($229.99)
Samsung Electronics MZ-7PD128BW 840 Pro Series 2.5-Inch 128GB SATA 6Gbps Solid State Drive($114.99)

$1000 Gaming PC Build - Newb Computer Build

Monthly Gaming PC Build ( $1022 ): March 2014

Gaming PC Build Recipe:

Capability: Game with Extreme settings at 1920X1080 resolutions and even High Settings in some games at 2560×1600

Hardware Link
Estimated Price: $ 1014.36
Processor

 

Intel Core i5-4670K Quad-Core Desktop Processor 3.4 GHZ 6 MB Cache – BX80646I54670K

 

 

Price: $235

Cooler

 

Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO – CPU Cooler with 120mm PWM Fan (RR-212E-20PK-R2)

 

Price: $35.99

Motherboard

 

MSI Computer Corp. ATX DDR3 2000 LGA 1150 Motherboards Z87-G43 GAMING*note: This Motherboard does not support SLI (It does support Crossfire)

 

Price: $134.98

Graphics Card

 

EVGA GeForce GTX760 w/EVGA ACX Cooler 2GB GDDR5 256bit, Dual-Link DVI-I, DVI-D, HDMI,DP, SLI Ready Graphics Card (02G-P4-2763-KR) Graphics Cards 02G-P4-2763-KR

 

 

Price: $249.99

RAM

 

Kingston Hyper X Blu 8 GB (2x4GB Modules) 1600MHz DDR3 Non-ECC CL9 XMP Desktop Memory – KHX1600C9D3B1K2/8GX

 

 

Price: $69.99

Hard Drive

 

WD Blue 1 TB Desktop Hard Drive: 3.5 Inch, 7200 RPM, SATA 6 Gb/s, 64 MB Cache – WD10EZEX

 

Price: $59.99

SSD *none – check the additions / alternatives section below for options!
Power Supply

XFX PRO650W Core Edition 80+ Bronze ATX 650 Energy Star Certified Power Supply

 

Price: $83.99

Computer Case

 

XFX Bravo Type1 ATX Chassis Mid Tower PC Case Cases (TY-PE1B-3000)

 

Price: $129.99

Optical Drive

 

 

 

LG Electronics 24X SATA Super-Multi DVD Internal Rewriter with M-Disc Support (Black) GH24NS95B

 

 

Price: $14.49

Overview: Gaming PC Build ( $1000 )

We have a nice solid mid tower $1000 this month, although with very few changes. There is a new pc case and a very first from XFX used in this build. If you go with this $1000 build you should expect great gaming performance at 1920×1080 is most all games on their highest settings. For example you can play Battlefield 4 on Ultra, 1080p at 60+ FPS (example video – Battlefield 4 on GTX 760 Ultra 1080p (BF4)). This example is using the included graphics card the GTX 760, however I just want to note that if you do want to SLI in the future, to choose either a different motherboard (like the MSI  G45) that supports SLI or get an AMD graphics card like the R9 270X or higher.

I have included the very first and new gaming chassis from XFX – the Type 1 Bravo. You can have up to three 5.25″ optical drives, as well as up to eight 2.5″ or 3.5″ drives. Inside you’ll also fit up to four dual-slot graphics cards thanks to eight expansion slots that can all be viewed through the side-panel window. The case can also house 140 mm fans as exhaust, which come pre-installed, as well as in the bottom. Up front, a 200 mm fan comes mounted as standard kit, though this can be replaced by a pair of 120 mm fans. Top exhaust can support either a single 200 mm fan or any size between 90 mm and 140 mm [XFX Introduces Type 1 Bravo PC Chassis].

$1000 Gaming PC Build Additions / Alternatives

Below are some hardware additions should you have some extra cash and want to upgrade a specific piece to the above build.

The motherboard suggestions below is the MSI Z87 GD65, the highest in MSI’s Gaming series motherboards – I use this as an upgrade suggestions since it does come with quite a few more features, but also will support both SLI and Corssfire, whereas the included MSI G43 above does not. Likewise you could also get an MSI G45 motherboard, which is a tad cheaper.

The upgraded graphics card suggestion below is  the GTX 770, which is significant upgrade over the already include GTX 760. We also have  a 128GB solid state drive, which can act as a superb boot drive as well store a ton of your most used games / software. We also have a more efficient Noctua CPU cooler, should you feel the need for it.

Add a SSD Boot Drive: Samsung Electronics MZ-7PD128BW 840 Pro Series 2.5-Inch 128GB SATA 6Gbps Solid State Drive= (+ $114.99) –
Upgrade your graphics card: EVGA GeForce GTX 770 Superclocked with ACX Cooler 4 GB GDDR5 256-Bit Dual-Link DVI-I/DVI-D HDMI DP SLI Ready Graphics Card 04G-P4-3774-KR ($409.99)
Better Motherboard – MSI G65 (Or MSI G45)  – MSI Computer Corp. Motherboard ATX DDR3 1333 LGA 1150 Motherboards Z87-GD65 GAMING Price:$189.99 Add a more efficient air CPU Cooler: Noctua 6 Dual Heatpipe with 140mm/120mm Dual SSO Bearing Fans CPU Cooler NH-D14 – Retail (Price: $74) – $10 cheaper

$1500 Gaming PC Build - Newb Computer Build

Monthly Gaming PC Build ( $1533 ): March 2014

Gaming PC Build Recipe:

Game with Extreme settings at resolutions of 2560×1600

Hardware Link
Estimated Price: $ 1533.56
Processor

 

Intel Core i5-4670K Quad-Core Desktop Processor 3.4 GHZ 6 MB Cache – BX80646I54670K

 

Price: $234.99

Cooler

 

Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO – CPU Cooler with 120mm PWM Fan (RR-212E-20PK-R2)

 

Price: $35.40

Motherboard

 

ASUS MAXIMUS VI HERO DDR3 2800 LGA 1150 Motherboard socket for 4th Generation Intel Core i7/ i5/ i3/ Pentium / Celeron Processors

 

Price: $199.79

Graphics Card

 

EVGA GeForce GTX780 3GB GDDR5 384bit, Dual-Link DVI-I, DVI-D, HDMI,DP, SLI Ready Graphics Card (03G-P4-2781-KR)

 

Price: $508.99

RAM

 

Crucial Ballistix Sport 16GB Kit (8GBx2) DDR3 1600 MT/s (PC3-12800) CL9 @1.5V UDIMM 240-Pin Memory BLS2KIT8G3D1609DS1S00

 

Price: $129.99

Hard Drive

WD Blue 1 TB Desktop Hard Drive: 3.5 Inch, 7200 RPM, SATA 6 Gb/s, 64 MB Cache – WD10EZEX

 

Price: $59.99

SSD

 

Samsung Electronics MZ-7PD128BW 840 Pro Series 2.5-Inch 128GB SATA 6Gbps Solid State Drive

 

Price: $114.99

Power Supply

 

Corsair RM Series 750 Watt ATX/EPS 80PLUS Gold-Certified Power Supply – CP-9020055-NA RM750

 

Price: $138.99

Computer Case

 

NZXT Technologies H440 Mid Tower Chassis Cases
Price: $119.99

 

*Note: This case does not have any Optical Drive Bays. I do include this in the build below – however if you feel you DO need it you can still use it via connecting it with an open case. This would be ok if you don’t use it often or just for your OS install. However, if you need your optical drive frequently you will need to purchase an enclosure or a SATA to USB convertor.

Optical Drive

 

 

LG Electronics 24X SATA Super-Multi DVD Internal Rewriter with M-Disc Support (Black) GH24NS95B

Price: $14.49

Overview: Gaming PC Build ( $1500 )

A fairly similar $1500 for March 2014 – with the inclusion of the Intel 4670K and the Asus Maximus Vi Hero. I have debated using a less expensive motherboard for the $1500 build, however the Asus maximus is fantastic motherboard for overclocking & has some great audio; a perfect gaming motherboard.

I have also switched up to the higher quality Samsung PRO series SSD in this build, which is one of the best and trust me, if you still haven’t used an SSD you will never think twice again. This $1500 build has so much potential, and even at stock is a great gamin pc to play all games on ultra and even at 2560×1600 resolutions.

Furthermore, as I also like to do – I have included a brand new pc case. The case included in this $1500 build for March is the newer NZXT H440 Mid Tower case. This case comes in your choice of Matt Black / Gloss Red or Gloss white. For a decent review you can watch this NZXT H440 Case Review video by OC3d TV. This is really a nice case and it comes with so many cool features, even small ones like a bright led back light to see all your input / output ports on the back of the case (which I thought was relatively neat).

So if you like a nice slick, simple cool case with a ton of features, then this case is a great option.

The NZXT H440 has the following technical specifications – (From nzxt.com)

Drive Bays External 5.25″: 0
Internal 3.5″/2.5″: 6+2
Cooling System Front: 2x 140/3x120mm (3 x 120mm FN V2 Fans Included)
Top: 2x 140/3x120mm
Rear: 1x 140/120mm (1 x 140mm FN V2 Fan Included)
Filters Front Side(Included)
Bottom Front (Included)
Bottom Rear(Included)
Radiator Support Front 2 x 140 or 3 x 120mm
Top 2 x 140 or 3 x 120mm
Rear 1 x 140/120mm
Clearance GPU Clearance With HDD Cage: 294mm
GPU Clearance Without HDD Cage: 406.2mm
CPU Cooler: 180mm
Cable Management: Lowest Point – 17.7mm; Highest Point 32.5mm
Dimensions 220mm x 510mm x 475.3mm
Material SECC Steel, ABS Plastic
Motherboard Support Mini-ITX, MicroATX, ATX
Expansion Slots 7
External Electronics 1 x Audio/Mic
I/O Panel LED On/Off
Product Weight 9.75 kg
UPC 15671011848 (White)
15671011855 (Black)
EAN 5060301691098 (White)
5060301691104 (Black)
USB 3.0 Ports 2
USB 2.0 Ports 2

$1500 Gaming PC Build Additions / Alternatives

If you have a little extra to spend on the $1500 build, then below are a few suggestions. For those of you who do much more then game, then an Intel core i7-4770K may be a worthy upgrade to ease video or graphics work. Or if you simply want to increase you graphics card potential, then you can SLI another MSI GTX 770 or purchase a single more powerful graphics card such as the GeForce GTX 780 Ti 3GB card. Or for those of you who want to dedicate more storage space solely to your SSD, then perhaps a larger 512GB Samsung PRO SDD is a worthy upgrade.

Also, please *note that if you do decide to SLI with another GeForce GTX 780 3GB graphics card, you may want to also upgrade the power supply unit to 850W (ie. Corsair RM 850 Watt)

Intel Core i7-4770K Quad-Core Desktop Processor 3.5 GHZ 8 MB Cache BX80646I74770K ($337.98) – Ideal for anyone who does video / graphics work etc. on top of gaming
SLI with another –
EVGA GeForce GTX780 3GB GDDR5 384bit, Dual-Link DVI-I, DVI-D, HDMI,DP, SLI Ready Graphics Card (03G-P4-2781-KR) (+$508.99)
Get a better single Graphics Cards: EVGA GeForce GTX 780 Ti, 3GB, 3072MB,GDDR5 384bit, Dual-Link DVI-I, DVI-D, HDMI,DP, SLI Ready Graphics Card (03G-P4-2881-KR) Graphics Cards 03G-P4-2881-KR($699.99) –
A Larger SSD: Samsung Electronics 840 Pro Series 2.5-Inch 512 SATA_6_0_gb Solid State Drive MZ-7PD512BW ($392.94) *lower price


March 2014’s Gaming PC Hardware Overview Video:

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Corey

Hello, my name is Corey and I run Newb Computer Build - A site where you can come learn about the Gaming Hardware you need in order to run the latest PC games: Check out the Monthly Gaming PC Builds. If you have any input or questions please feel free to leave them in the comments. Google+

33 thoughts to “Budget Gaming PC Builds March 2014 – $600 – $1000 – $1500”

    1. True and you could get away with 600-650 watts easily. The GTX 780 requires a bare minimum of 600 Watts to run. 750 Watts is a comfortable amount to leave room for overclocking power requirements, upgrades etc. and even 750 watts is the bare minimum for the GTX 780 in SLI, but could still work. So up to me, I would go with 750 watts with that particular build.

  1. Hye corey,

    If i have a budget of 800 dollar, what is your recommendation upgrade for your 600 dollar gaming rig or downgrade recommendation for your 1000 dollar gaming rig?

    1. Hello Mohamad,

      I believe you have sent me a message via the contact form to which I have responded. Hopefully you have received it, but if not – let me know.

  2. Hello there,

    I just wanted to know why the 600$ build doesn’t have a cooler recommended.
    Is there any specific reason there isn’t one needed, like in the 1000$ and 1500$ builds?

    Sorry for my ignorance and thanks in advance.

    1. Oh, and also pcpartpicker is telling me there might be some compatibility issues between AMD FX-6300 3.5GHz 6-Core Processor & MSI 970A-G46 ATX AM3+ Motherboard

      Thank you

      1. Hello Didi,

        For your first question, the $600 build doesn’t include a separate cpu cooler since it doesn’t need one and to keep within budget. To explain further, the $1000 and $1500 also don’t need the ‘extra’ cpu cooler since most cpu’s will come with a stock cooler nowadays. I do include the extra cooler in those builds since it does help maximize the overclocking capability of those processors. So the $600 does come with a stock heatsink / cooler.

        Secondly, pcpartpicker is simply stating a warning that with this particular motherboard, you may need a BIOS update to work properly with the AMD FX 6300 processor – however I can assure you it will work, just install any updates it may need when you get it all up and running.

        Let me know if you have any further questions 🙂

        1. Thank you so much for the quick answer.
          Its clear now and this whole post was really useful for choosing the right parts for my new build. (:

  3. Hi Corey,

    Thanks for the nice suggestions.

    I am planning to buy a new PC. I wonder I would be able to do the assembly myself. That would save me around 200 USD. However, it was long time ago last time I opened a computer case. Do you think I can handle it and do you know any online tutorials or similar describing such? Thanks in advance.

    1. Hello Ozan,

      I bet you can for sure handle it! There are tons of individuals out there with tutorials showing you how as well and generally everything comes with great instructions. If you want to view a quick video I posted of another person who was building their very first PC you can here – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xfi1R8iHobY

      He goes through his entire build piece by piece.

      Also, if you have any questions come back here and leave a comment and I’ll help you out!

  4. hi Corey
    i was just wondering is the core i5 is enough for hardcore gaming………. does it worth to pay more and buy the core i7 or the difference in gaming performance will be insignificant ????
    and may i suggest that you can add after the builds some accessories and game gears that would go with builds (monitors,mice keyboards….etc) that would be great in my opinion .thanks in advance =D and keep on the good job.

    1. Hello ranker 🙂

      In my opinion, the i5 is perfect for hardcore gaming and the price difference would be negligible in terms of gaming specific performance. Also, if you go with the Intel Core i5 4670K you can overclock it really easily. With regards to gaming pc performance, you’ll always find the biggest factor is the graphics card – however if you do find you do video / graphics / other work with your PC then an investment in an i7 might be worth it.

      Also, great suggestion with regards to the gaming gear – and good luck with your build! Let me know if you have any further questions.

  5. Hey i’m very new to computer building, and I had a question about graphics card vs video and sound cards. If I buy the

    “EVGA EVGA GeForce GTX 750Ti Superclock w/G-SYNC Support 2GB GDDR5 128bit, Dual-Link DVI-I, HDMI, DP 1.2 Graphics (02G-P4-3753-KR) Graphics Cards 02G-P4-3753-KR”

    from the $600 build, will I still need to purchase a video and or sound card to be able to play new games with the components from the $600 build. Thanks so much I look forward to your reply.

    1. Hello Tim,

      First, a video card is just another name for a “graphics card” – as you mentioned the “eEVGA GeForce GTX 750Ti” in the $600 build. Also, a sound card can be used to enhance your audio if you wanted. Nowadays, these are generally not needed, and especially so In these gaming pc build. The MSI motherboard supports 7.1 surround audio onboard (included), so there wouldn’t be a concern.

      Let me know if you have any further questions!

      1. Hey thanks a bunch, I’m really excited to build my first computer I was just curios about that but what a fast reply. I’ll let you know how it all comes together.

  6. I was wondering if i was to buy the “Apevia X-Sniper 2 mid tower” upgrade for the $600 build would i also need to purchase additional fans or will the pre-built one keep work? if i do is there a preferred fan?

    1. Hello Deverick,

      As I mentioned, below sorry for a later response. If you go with the Apevia X-Sniper 2, it comes with one front 120mm fan. You could get another for say a back exhaust fan at a 120mm as well. The full fan support can be seen on their site here – http://www.apevia.com/productsInfo.asp?KEY=X-Sniper2-BL (The case supports up to 8 case fans). You could get a cheap one like this to match (Cooler Master Fan 120mm with Green Leds) – http://goo.gl/RQM1Ac

    1. Hello Kevin,

      Sorry for the later response. Yeah, if you do plan on adding a ton, you can definitely upgrade to a full tower case and the Haf X is a great choice. A more affordable option could also be the “NAZXT Phantom Full Tower” case for about $119. Both of the cases will fit the Corsair H100i, just need to move some fans around.

      As per the graphics card you linked – it is a tad better, although I’m not sure you would notice much of a difference, however it is about an $11 difference now, which still isn’t too bad.

      1. Although I didn’t include liquid cooling, it is definitely possible and would be a good fit with the NZXT H440 case. What would you recommend for anyone that may be interested in liquid cooling the $1500 build?

  7. I enjoy reading these builds every month. I’ve been looking to get back into PC gaming as I’ve been buying so many cheap steam games (Those Sales!). Sadly I’m disappointed in the fact there is no 4ms< response time IPS/PLS monitors yet. Money is no barrier with my upcoming build, but I want to game higher than 1080p if I'm jumping into PC games. I was hoping to crossfire two R9 290 cards for 1440p but they are higher than snoopdog in pricing.

    Guess I'm sticking to my old consoles for a while longer…

    1. Hello Justin,

      Thanks for keeping up every month and I agree Steam sales, addicting…and I have been teeth clenching the last couple of months with regards to the R9 card prices, it’s very frustrating. lol @ snoopdog pricing, I may steal that from you someday.

      What do you mainly play on console? Or likewise, what would you like to play on PC versus console?

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