It’s a true feat finding a quality gaming computer on a small budget. But, there are still many options available to those that do their research. As cost is a relative factor, this post will weigh more towards computers that run $500 or less. This is not an easy price-point to find a great gaming desktop in, but there are always some deals to be had.
Though, you must remember that a big portion of a gaming computer’s value comes from the graphics card that it includes. If you have a cheap on, the computer will be no good for gaming at all. Yet, if half of what you spend goes towards a quality graphics card then the computer could outperform a lot of costlier alternatives.
That said, here are some of the best options of cheap gaming desktops on the market today as reviewed.
The $500 Build
Before considering the pre-built retail models available, you might want to think about ‘building your own PC instead’. This will give you a much better cost-to-dollar value, meaning you can get the best specs for your money. Custom builds make the most sense for anyone looking for a gaming computer for $500 or less. The retail models at this price-point are lacking to say the least, and almost never include a favorable graphics card.
The iBuyPower Gamer Power AM649FX
When and where in stock, the iBuyPower Gamer Power desktop has everything a game could need. It’s build includes a 1 TB 7200rpm hard drive, 8 GB DDR3 RAM, and an AMD FX-4130 3.8Ghz processor. It also features an AMD Radeon HD 6450 graphics card. While the graphics card would be the first part worth upgrading, this is one of the few cheap gaming desktops with a quality build for $500 or less.
The CybertronPC Patriot GM1293D
The CybertronPC Patriot GM1293D is priced below $500 and includes a strong specs list. This includes a 3.4GHz AMD A4-5300 dual-core processor, a 7200rpm 1 TB hard driv, and 8 GB of RAM. What makes this cheap gaming desktop stand out is the AMD Radeon HD 7480D graphics card. The ‘Notebook Check test’ indicates that this graphics card plays some games quite well, while others struggle to maintain a strong frames-per-second load speed.
The CyberTron PC Borg-Q GM4213A
The CyberTron Borg-Q GM4213A hovers around the $500 price target, and it has a whole lot to offer to the average gamer. It features 8 GB DDR3 RAM, 1 TB 7200rpm hard drive, and FX Series Quad Core FX 4120 3.8GHz processor. As well, it features the NVIDIA GeForce GT610 1GB graphics card which can run even more strenuous games without any hang-time or crashing.
Which Gaming Computer is Right for You?
You can find cheap gaming desktops that play newer games. But, you will be hard-pressed to find anything for under $500 that will give incredibly fast playback. That said, it’s worth considering one of two options: A) get a new, prebuilt cheap gaming desktop from the list above or other popular guides (see DesktopcomputerNinja) and spend a little extra to give it an incredible graphics card, or, B) invest $500 directly into a custom build as that allows you to attribute more towards a good graphics card.
Either way, cheap gaming desktops can be found and it’s just a matter of finding the one model that best suits your needs and preferences.