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Last Update: May 01, 2019

Top 6 PCs for Gaming Under $600

Published 01:45 AM
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A key reason as to why gamers choose consoles over PCs is because they’re cheaper and less complicated to manage. For instance, the price of a regular PlayStation is $299.

Both Microsoft and Sony sell their consoles at a loss with the intention to offset the cost using the sales from games, accessories, and services like Xbox live. In the long run (depending on your spending and gaming habits) console gaming can cost you as much or even more than PC gaming.

The advantages of buying a PC and becoming a part of the master race are well documented. Playing multiplayer online is free (for the most part), it’s upgradeable and a basic PC can do far more than a console can.

However, choosing a console is far simpler than picking a gaming PC.

If you don’t take the time to do the proper research before purchasing a computer, you’re in greater danger of overspending and suffering through a bad case of buyer’s remorse. 🖥️ 🔍

Once again, we’re here to save the day and make your research efforts far easier. If you’re operating with a tight a budget and a busy schedule, all the gaming PCs listed in this guide should give you a pretty decent gaming experience for a reasonable price.

The gaming PCs in this list are low to mid-tier. Since VR is a hot topic at the moment, it’s important to note that a lot of the PCs in this price range are not VR-ready.

You might find better gaming PCs that cost a lot more but we ensured that the PCs listed in this guide are the very best in their price range, so you know which ones are the best budget gaming PCs.


6 Best Pre-Built Gaming PCs Under $600

When purchasing a PC, whether it’s for gaming or work, you have to think about the long term implications. A good PC should be able to last you for the next five years.

So a key criterion we used to decide which PCs would make the cut is their upgradeability. This criterion is only second to a PC’s performance per dollar. While performance per dollar is basically what you can get from the PC at the moment, upgradeability is what you can get from it in the future – its potential.

The computers on this list are good starting points for beginners on a budget. While they won’t allow you to play with ultra-settings on the latest games, most of them are just one upgrade away (mostly graphics card) from becoming real monsters. You don’t need to worry though, ’cause today you can even find the best graphics card under $300 that’ll more than meet your needs.

1

Best Choice: ASRock DeskMini A300 Tiny Desktop

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Key Features:

  • AMD Ryzen 5 2400G Quad-Core Processor
  • AMD Radeon RX Vega 11 Processor Graphics
  • 16GB DDR4 RAM Ram
  • 256 GB NVMe SSD

ASRock DeskMini A300 Tiny Desktop Review

If you’re unfamiliar with ASRock, they’re a subsidiary of Asus that was established back in 2002. Since the early noughties, they’ve been crafting the industry standard in motherboards. They also manufacture industrial and home theater PCs.

ASRock’s DeskMini isn’t your typical gaming PC. It’s very minimalistic and nondescript. You won’t find any flashing LED lights here or large glossy logos.

It’s a mini small form factor PC that only weighs about 7 pounds (just over 3 kilograms). Despite its size, it packs one hell of a punch.

It comes with 16GB of RAM and a 256 NVMe SSD. NVMe SSDs are a lot faster than normal SATA SSDs and a lot more compact. So games will load insanely fast while its AMD Ryzen 5 2400G processor and Radeon RX Vega 11 graphics card render them.

It’s a great PC but because of its size, there is a limitation to how much you can upgrade it. For instance, there isn’t any space or frame for a built-in optical drive.

The PC also doesn’t come with a good gaming keyboard and mouse combo. However, because of its ability to deliver console grade graphics while taking up as little room as possible, we highly recommend it.

+Pros
  • Affordable Price
  • Decent Upgradeability
  • Compact and lightweight
  • 3-year warranty
  • Does not support VR
  • Supports RAID 0/1 function
-Cons
  • Does not come with an optical drive (or space for one)
  • Doesn’t come with a mouse or keyboard
2

Best Quality: Dell i5675-A933BLU-PUS Inspiron

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Key Features

  • AMD Radeon RX 570 4GB GDDR5 Graphics
  • AMD Ryzen 5 1400 Processor
  • 1TB HDD
  • 8GB Ram
  • Tray Loading Dual Layer DVD Burner

Dell i5675-A933BLU-PUS Inspiron Review

Dell requires no introduction. They’ve been manufacturing computers since the late 80s. Their budget gaming PC, the Dell i5675 is a truly inspired machine.

From its uniquely designed finned case to its air and liquid cooling options, this PC is built to deliver an uncompromised gaming performance while maintaining optimal temperatures airflow.

It uses an AMD Ryzen 5 processor and AMD Radeon RX 570 4GB GDDR5 Graphics to give you high definition gaming while remaining relatively cool. This PC will run most games in their medium to high settings. You’ll also be able to run older games in their ultra-settings.

What impressed us most about this machine is that it has five storage bays. Which gives it amazing upgradeability. With this type of expansion potential, you could add three hard-disk drives, two solid-state drives, and two PCIe x16 slots for graphics upgrades.

The computer is VR-Ready so it can utilize an Oculus Rift or HTC Vive headset. It also supports newer connection interfaces. It has a 3.1 Type-C port for next-gen data transferring and six USB 3.0 ports.

In terms of wireless connectivity, the computer uses Bluetooth 4.1 and 802.11ac for Wi-Fi. It also has a media card reader and DVD writer.

It might require you to go over budget but it’s a well-built modern machine that gives you great value for money.

+Pros
  • Great Port Layout
  • Includes a vertical optical drive
  • Includes an SD Card reader
  • Has PS2 Slots
  • Has a total of 10 USB Ports
  • Aesthetically Pleasing Design
  • Decent upgradeability
  • Uses the reasonably quiet Wraith Cooler
  • Includes a USB Type C port
  • VR-Ready
-Cons
  • A little over budget
  • A little bulky
  • Doesn’t come with an SSD
3

Best Value: iBUYPOWER Enthusiast Gaming PC AM010A

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Key Features

  • AMD FX-6300 6-Core 3.5 GHz
  • NVIDIA GeForce GT 710 1GB Dedicated Graphics Card
  • 8 GB DDR3 Ram
  • 1 TB 7200 HDD

iBUYPOWER Enthusiast Gaming PC AM010A Review

The Enthusiast Gaming PC from iBuyPower looks like your conventional gaming PC. That’s because iBuyPower specializes in building gaming PCs for both professionals and enthusiasts.

The iBuyPower’s gaming desktop case is primarily black with red highlights. It has a red LED stripe running through its face. It uses an AMD FX-6300 CPU which is pretty decent. Along with its 8GB of RAM, it will run applications like Google Chrome with no sweat.

But you’re not buying this computer just so you can browse the internet, you’re buying it for gaming. So you need to know how well it will handle games, right?

Unfortunately, its graphics card will not provide you with an optimal gaming experience. It uses an NVIDIA Geforce GT 710 which will allow you to play newer games in lower or medium settings.

It should be able to handle games like PUBG, Apex Legends, and Fortnite. If you plan on buying this PC, we recommend that you replace the Graphics card as soon as you can afford to.

It also comes with a standard 1TB HDD which gives you plenty of space to store your games in. Unfortunately, it doesn’t come with an SSD.

The computer also comes packaged with a gaming mouse and keyboard. It comes pre-installed with Microsoft Windows 10 Home.

It has a 1-year warranty which includes parts and labor and also has free lifetime tech support. It’s a great starter gaming PC at an affordable price.

+Pros
  • Great upgradeability
  • Comes with Windows 10 Pre-installed
  • Affordable
  • Comes with gaming Keyboard and Mouse
  • 120MM fan ensures that it runs quietly
-Cons
  • Very entry level graphics card
  • Bulky especially for the number of components in it
  • Chassis has no frame or slots for optical drive
  • Impractical placement of power buttons (They’re on top)
4

Best for Work: Lenovo IdeaCentre 720 Flagship Premium

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Key Features

  • AMD Ryzen 5 1400 Quad-Core processor
  • AMD Radeon R5 GDDR5 Graphics Card
  • DVD +/-RW
  • 16GB DDR4 Ram
  • 1 TB HDD

Lenovo IdeaCentre 720 Flagship Premium Home & Business Desktop Review

Lenovo has come a long way since it acquired IBM’s PC manufacturing division back in 2005. Since then it’s been producing some of the most affordable desktop computers and laptops.

Lenovo’s IdeaCentre 720 is no different. While it’s not exclusively geared towards gaming, it uses an AMD Radeon R5 to deliver a pretty decent gaming experience. While it won’t deliver top-tier performance, games like Apex Legends and Overwatch will play well on it.

It works better as a desktop and a workstation than it does as a gaming PC. It has 16GB of RAM (which can be upgraded to 32GB) and AMD Ryzen 5 1400 Quad-Core processor that will give you effortless process multi-tasking on your computer.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t come with an SSD. The IdeaCentre has excellent upgradeability. It has a 5.25-inch external expansion bay, a PCI-E x1 slot, and an empty PCI-E x16 slot.

The computer comes packaged with a gaming mouse and keyboard. It also comes pre-installed with an authentic version Windows 10 Home.

The Lenovo Idea Centre is an above average workstation that can handle most games at their lower to medium settings. If you want to fully actualize it as a gaming PC, you’d have to upgrade its graphics card.

Either way, it’s a worthy alternative to the other entries on this guide.

+Pros
  • Comes with a keyboard and mouse
  • Comes with an optical drive
  • Has decent Upgradeability (1 x External 5.25″ Expansion Bays, 1 x PCI-E x1 Slots, 1 x PCI-E x16 Slots)
-Cons
  • A little over budget
  • A little bulky
  • Doesn’t come with an SSD
  • Not VR-Ready
  • Utilizes a vertical optical drive (as opposed to a horizontal one)
  • The power button is on the top of the case
5

Best Portable: CUK Axiom TS Tiny Desktop

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Key Features

  • AMD Ryzen 5 2400G Quad-Core Processor
  • 8GB RAM
  • 256GB SSD
  • AMD Radeon RX Vega 11

CUK Axiom TS Tiny Desktop Review

One of the first computers people were able to buy with AMD’s Raven Ridge APUs on board was the Axiom TS Mini from Computer Upgrade King (CUK).

The case weighs just 4 pounds (1,8 kg) which means you’ll be able to throw it out the window with ease when you rage quit.

Underneath the hood, it packs a Micro-ATX motherboard. Attached to it is a 256 GB SSD, 8GB RAM, an AMD Ryzen 5 processor as well as an AMD Radeon RX Vega 11 graphics card.

Together they work to produce a more than an acceptable gaming experience. Older games can be played on high while newer games will require you to play on either low or medium if you want to get good frame rates.

Because of its size and power supply, it has very limited upgradeability. If you plan on adding a 3.5 inch HDD or internal optical drive, you can cast those notions aside because it just doesn’t have space or power to handle them.

It doesn’t come with a keyboard and mouse. Fortunately, it’s very easy to find and buy the best gaming keyboard and the best gaming mouse that will meet your needs.

If you want a PC that looks a lot like a console but can do a lot more, you should definitely give the Axiom TS Mini a try.

+Pros
  • Compact and light
  • Comes with a 3-year warranty
  • Affordable price
-Cons
  • Does not come with an optical drive
  • Is not VR-Ready
  • Has limited upgradeability
  • Does not come with a keyboard and mouse
6

Dell Inspiron 3668 Desktop PC

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Key Features

  • Intel Core i5-7400 Processor
  • 12GB DDR4 RAM
  • 1TB HDD
  • Intel Integrated 630 Graphics
  • DVD-RW

Dell Inspiron 3668 Desktop PC Review

While Dell’s Inspiron 3668 isn’t strictly a gaming PC, it has enough power to allow you to watch videos, get work done and play a little PUBG.

In terms of design and aesthetics, not a lot of manufacturers and vendors can compete with Dell. The Dell is designed in such a way that it can fit in anywhere. It will complement your office, study, living room or even bedroom.

It uses a 7th generation Intel Core i5 processor. While the processor is a little outdated, it still handles well. The computer comes with 12GB of Ram and a 1TB hard drive. To be honest, this makes it a little slower than we would like.

The weakest link in this computer’s spec list is its lack of a dedicated graphics card. Instead, it uses Intel HD Graphics 630, which is great for watching videos but not particularly good for gaming.

However, you can still play older games. You’ll also be able to play Overwatch, PUBG, and World of Warcraft on their lowest settings.

Despite all its flaws and because of its extensive storage, upgradeability, and great design, the Dell Inspiron 3668 is still worth buying. Just make sure you add a dedicated graphics card to it, sooner than later.

+Pros
  • Well designed and compact case
  • Comes with an optical drive
  • Decent upgradeability
  • Comes with wired mouse and keyboard
  • Well organized port layout
-Cons
  • Uses Intel integrated graphics
  • The optical drive is vertical

Best Gaming PCs under 600 Dollars: Buying Guide

When you’re looking for a good budget gaming PC, you need to ensure that you have a good balance between price, performance, and upgradeability.

Since the value of a computer is in the sum of its parts, picking the right gaming PC means understanding the different components that go into it.

This includes the Processor (CPU), RAM, graphics card, storage, and the power supply. These features can help you decide whether a PC is worth the purchase or not.

The CPU: Powers Your Gaming PC’s Performance

The CPU (central processing unit) or main central processor is your computer’s brain. It basically does all the computing for you.

cpu

Intel and AMD are two of the most popular CPU vendors. Both utilize different specifications but very similar architecture. While Intel is more trusted and stays on the cutting edge of innovation, AMD provides great value for money.

In terms of gaming, what you need to look out for when you’re picking a processor is the clocking speed and cache size.

RAM: Crucial for Load Times

RAM (Random Access Memory) can be compared to short term memory. The size of the RAM is essential for speed and loading times on a gaming PC.

While choosing RAM isn’t as difficult as it used to be, picking the right RAM can give you an edge over your gaming rivals and opponents.

Our guide on the best RAM for gaming can assist you in deciding which manufacturers and types will suit you best.

HyperX Predator ram memory

Graphics Card: The Heart of the Gaming PC

It’s not hard to see why the graphics card is so important. The graphics card does all the rendering and of course, the quality of the graphics affects how you’ll experience and play the game.

For many, the GPU is considered to be the most vital component for PC gaming. You can have the very best CPU along with bucket loads of RAM but if you don’t’ have a good graphics card, you can forget about playing that GTA V or The Witcher 3.

Your video/graphics card does all the rendering. From the scenery to the cut scenes and images, your game is brought to life by the power of your GPU.

The biggest graphics card manufacturers are AMD and NVidia. Although NVidia graphics cards are slightly more popular and supported, AMD is a more than decent alternative.

EVGA GeForce RTX 2060 XC

Storage: Where Your Games Live

For a long time games came in external media like floppy disks and CDs. You would install them and run them from the external media source. Some games could simply be copied over to your hard drive.

Because of the internet, there’s less of a reason to use external media and have an internal optical drive installed on your computer.

So most of your games will be installed and run directly from your hard drive. Modern hard drives come in two flavors: SSDs (Solid State Drives) and HDD (Hard Disk Drives).

samsung ssd storage

When SSDs were first introduced, they were unreliable and prone to failure. Today’s SSDs are faster and offer more space. A key advantage that SSDs hold over HDDs is their fast loading times. They’re also a lot quieter. If SSD is what meets your needs, it’s important for you to pick the best SSD for gaming, so everything runs smoothly.

HDDs provide more space and are more economical. When looking at the storage of the gaming desktop you’re interested in, try to find gaming PCs that have an SSD and preferably a high-capacity HDD.  Just as SSD, you should know which one is the best HDD for gaming, so you can play your games without any trouble.


Frequently Asked Questions

Here are a few questions you should consider when buying a gaming PC under $600.

What is a Good Gaming PC for a beginner?

There are many options out there. While beginners may be tempted to build their own PC, we recommend that you start by purchasing a good pre-built gaming PC as a foundation.
From there you can learn more about your PC and gradually upgrade it. If you’re working with a budget under $600, we recommend that you choose the ASRock DeskMini A300 Tiny Desktop. It’s a great all-rounder.

Lenovo Y Series

How Much Does a Decent Gaming PC Cost?

This is a hard question to answer objectively. It all depends on what you’re looking for in a gaming PC. For instance, it’s hard to find a VR-Ready PC that will cost you under $600.

A decent gaming computer can cost you anywhere between $500 and $1000. A key advantage of buying a PC instead of building one is buying can be less time-consuming.

Is it Cheaper to Build or Buy a PC?

Building a computer is slightly cheaper than buying one. You just need to know where to get the best parts for a reasonable price. However, once again, we wouldn’t recommend building a PC for beginners unless you have time to perform thorough research.


Conclusion

If you’re working with a budget that’s just under $600 dollars and you’re in need of a good gaming PC, the computers listed in this guide should provide you with ample options.

When you budget for your new PC, make sure that you also leave room for peripherals and accessories. For instance, you need to find the best gaming monitor or a mouse and keyboard for you.

Another advantage that PCs have over consoles is their range of usability. For instance, no one is buying consoles to perform office work on. While your computer is great for playing games, it can do a whole lot more so make sure that it’s optimized for work as well.

We hope you’ve found this guide helpful. Thank you for reading and happy gaming.


Sources:

  1. Gaming Computer, Wikipedia
  2. How Computers Work: The CPU and Memory
  3. Kevin Krewell, What’s the Difference Between a CPU and a GPU, Nvidia, December 16th, 2009
  4. What is Computer System Cooling, Webopedia
  5. Matt Koble, How Much Will it Cost to Build a Gaming PC, Chron
  6. Types of Computer Cases and Motherboard Factors, November 30th, 2011
  7. Jeff Tyson & Dave Coustan, How RAM Works, How Stuff Works
  8. Build a PC, InstallGentoo Wiki
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