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7 Best Gaming PCs Under 500 Dollars in 2018 (Updated!)

Guide to superior gaming PC under 500 dollars (Updated!)

PC gaming need not be too expensive, as the market is teeming with the most cutting-edge technology so it makes total sense that you’re looking to find the best gaming PC under 500 dollars. Fair enough, it’s not going to be a walk in the park finding the best gaming PC under 500 as frankly if you’re looking for the ultimate experience the best gaming PCs will cost you an upwards of $1500.

So you’re on a budget and would rather not opt for a gaming console, what other options are you left with?

What if I told you that you don’t have to spend a penny more for today, you can own a robust gaming PC for under 500 bucks? I will get to that in a minute, but let’s first talk about the components that make up a good gaming PC.

What components make up a good gaming PC under 500?

The processor (suitable for a gaming PC)

intel gaming pc processor

Intel Processor

Probably the most important component to consider when looking for a cheap gaming PC under 500 dollars – and for a good reason. What a processor does is to determine how well your PC will perform when running your gaming software.

You’ll need to choose between quad-core or dual processors but if money isn’t really an important factor for you when looking for a good gaming PC then I would recommend that you go for a quad processor.

Whereas a good number of gamers favor Intel’s hexacore and octa-core processors (which in essence cost a truckload of money), I believe the extra cost hardly add any value to the processor and personally I would recommend against opting for the later. Intel’s would be the better choice.

Gaming Laptop Vs Gaming Desktop

gaming pc under 500 desktop vs laptopTrue enough, gaming laptops have really come a long way especially in the last 10 years but the facts are, they remain to this day an inherently compromised solution. Laptops have been forced to cut back on performance as components like good processors or top notch video cards require a lot of power while they produce so much heat that a regular laptop’s cooling system would not be able to handle.

A modest gaming desktop computer that costs $500 can easily put a gaming laptop worth $800 to shame and run today’s most demanding games at a higher resolution.

The GPU

gpu video card gaming pc under 500The Graphical Processing Unit also called the video card is just as important as the processor. It is designed to accelerate the creation of images in a frame buffer and put out beautiful graphics on your gaming PC’s screen. It does this by rapidly altering and manipulating memory.

It simply translates to faster video cards giving out smoother and better-looking graphics that offer a better gaming experience than that of sub-standard video cards. As a gamer, you don’t want to be spotted anywhere near low-end video cards.

If you’re going to go for Nvidia graphic cards I recommend that you stay away from those with the model numbers that have a 20, 30, or 40 (like the GT 730). If you prefer AMD’s product line, model numbers with a 4, 5, or 6 as the second digit should be a no-no for any genuine gamer (like the Radeon R7 240).

You want to stay within the range of video cards like the Nvidia GTX 960 and the AMD Radeon R9 380. These can without a doubt handle any graphically demanding PC game in 1080p with full detail.

If you’re going to run a video game on a resolution below 1080p I recommend at the minimum 1GB of memory, and 2GB at the minimum for 1080p. Anything beyond 1080p will need at least 3GB to run seamlessly but 4GB would be optimum.

Both Nvidia and AMD remain at the top of all brands of video cards although Nvidia is slightly ahead. Still a close call.

You don’t need too much RAM for a gaming PC under 500

RAM gaming pc under 500Unlike the processor or video card, the RAM is not as expensive as it used to be a couple years ago. You will easily find a gaming PC under 500 bucks with 32GB of memory. So while adding more memory may seem like a good thing to the average consumer, it is of no significance because most video games developed today will run smoothly on gaming computers with only 8GB of RAM. For best results, I would recommend that you settle for 16GB.

Update: 25.02.2018

1st on our list of gaming Pc build (Readers’ Favorite!)

CYBERPOWERPC Gamer Ultra GUA510 Gaming Desktop – 8GB, 1TB HDD, Win 10 Home

gaming pc under 500 CYBERPOWERPC Gamer Ultra GUA510 Gaming Desktop

Few gaming PCs come with the features this beast offers at a price this low. It packs tons of impressive features for gamers who want to experience gaming like it’s supposed to be done while still on a budget.

Powered by a 3.8 GHz FX-4300 Processor, 8GB of DDR3 Memory and AMD Radeon R5 230 Graphics, the CyberpowerPC Gamer Ultra GUA510 Gaming Desktop promises to deliver a solid gaming experience that most budget gaming PCs can wish to.

A summary of its specs:

Processor3.8 GHz FX-4300
RAM8 GB DDR3
Hard Drive1024 GB 1TB SATA III
Graphics CardAMD Radeon R5 230
Keyboard IncludedYes
Number of USB Ports8

Cheap best gaming pc under 500 dollars

2nd on our gaming PC under 500 bucks list

Dell Inspiron Gaming Desktop i5675 AMD Ryzen(TM) 3 1200 Processor, 8GB DDR4 2400MHz, 1TB 7200 rpm SATA HDD, AMD Radeon (TM) RX 560 with 2GB GDDR5 Graphics Memory, Windows 10 Home (64bit), Recon Blue

Dell Inspiron 5675 AMD Desktop under 500

Summary:

Processor

i5675 AMD Ryzen(TM) 3 1200 Processor

RAM8GB DDR4
Hard Drive1TB 7200 rpm SATA HDD
Graphics Coprocessor

AMD Radeon (TM) RX 560

Card Descriptionsee item page
Number of USB Portssee item page

best gaming pc under 500_Lenovo X315 Gaming Desktop

 

3rd on our list of best gaming computers under 500 bucks in 2018 (UPDATE!)

CYBERPOWERPC Gamer Ultra GUA3120A w/ AMD FX-4300 3.8GHz CPU, 8GB DDR3, AMD R7 250 2GB, 1TB HDD, 24X DVD+-RW & Win 10 Home 64-Bit Desktop Gaming PC

best cheap gaming pc under 500 in 2018

Summary of specs:

Processor Series3.8 GHz AMD FX
RAM8 GB
Hard Drive1024 GB SATAIII
Card DescriptionRadeon R7 250
Graphics Card Ram Size2048 MB

best cheap gaming pc under 500

4th on our best gaming pcs under 500 list

CUK Lineage Gaming Desktop (Intel Pentium G4400, 8GB DDR4 RAM, 1TB HDD, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 2GB, Windows 10) PC Computer for Gamers – White

2018 cheap best gaming PC under 500

Summary of specs:

Processor3.3 GHz Pentium
RAM8 GB DDR4 2400
Hard Drive1000 GB
Graphics CoprocessorNVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050
Card Descriptiondedicated
Graphics Card Ram Size2400
Number of USB 3.0 PortsSee Item For Details
best cheap gaming pc

5th on our $500 ghttp://amzn.to/2tN2VDEaming PC build list

ASUS M32CD Desktop (Core i5, 8GB, 1TB, Windows 10)

list of gaming pc under 500Summary of specs:

Processor3.3 GHz Core i5 6400
RAM8 GB DDR3
Memory Speed1600 MHz
Hard Drive1 TB SATA
Card Descriptionintegrated
Number of USB 2.0 Ports2
Number of USB 3.0 Ports4
cheap pc for gaming under 500

6th on our list of cheap gaming computers under 500

Alienware Steam Machine ASM100-6980BLK Desktop Console (Intel Core i7, 8 GB RAM, 1 TB HDD) NVIDIA GeForce GTX GPU

 

gaming pc under 500 Alienware Steam Machine

Summary of Specs:

ProcessorIntel Core i7-4785T Quad-Core Processor(8M Cache, up to 3.2 GHz)
RAM8GB Dual Channel DDR3L 1600MHz
Hard Drive1TB SATA 6Gb/s 7200 RPM
Operating SystemSteamOS
Video GraphicsNVIDIA GeForce GTX GPU 2GB GDDR5 (comparable to 860M class performance)
Ports and slots1. USB 2.0 | 2. Power adapter port | 3. HDMI In & Out | 4. Optical audio out | 5. RJ45 port | 6. USB 3.0
gaming pc under 500 Alienware Steam Machine

Last on our list of cheap gaming desktop under 500

CybertronPC Borg-Q Gaming Desktop – AMD FX-4300 3.8GHz Quad-Core, NVIDIA GeForce GT 710, 8GB DDR3 Memory, 1TB HDD, DVD±RW, Microsoft Windows 10 Home 64-bit

best gaming pc under 500 CybertronPC Borg-Q Gaming Desktop

 

Summary of specs:

Processor3.8 GHz AMD FX
RAM8 GB DDR3
Hard Drive1000 GB SATA II
Graphics CoprocessorNVIDIA GeForce GT 710
Graphics Descriptiondedicated
Number of USB 3.0 Ports4

gaming pc under 500 CybertronPC Borg-Q Gaming Desktop

Update: 10.12.2017

An addition to our Gaming PC Under 500 Dollars list is the SkyTech Shadow Gaming Computer.

We chose to include it in our list because every now and then its price drops to fit our budget and you might be lucky to find it at under 500.

This powerhouse of a gaming PC boasts of an AMD FX-4300 3.8GHz Quad-Core processor, 8GB DDR3 memory,  GTX750TI graphic card and 1TB of Hardrive. You’d be hard-pressed to find a better deal for the price.gaming pc under 500 dollars

Specs:

Processor3.8 GHz FX-4300
RAM8 GB SDRAM DDR3
Memory Speed1866 MHz
Hard Drive1 TB HDD 7200 rpm
Graphics CoprocessorGTX 750 TI
Card Descriptiondedicated
Number of USB 2.0 Ports6

gaming pc under 500 CybertronPC Borg-Q Gaming Desktop

Under $500 Gaming PCs UPDATE 2018 (click here to read)

Conclusion

In conclusion, it is worth noting that a good gaming PC under 500 is a balancing act. When you’re looking to buy a gaming PC, expect to be bombarded by ads, both on manufacturer websites and on random tech blogs. Always ask yourself if you’re interested in a ‘pretty’ gaming PC or one that actually does the job of running your favorite high-end video game seamlessly and with full detail.

I hope this post answered your questions but also feel free to ask for assistance whenever unsure.

Recommended:   Top 5 Gaming PCs You Can Buy Today.

About The Author
Noah
Noah is a technology enthusiast at heart. He writes about tech, various topics trending on digital media and offers solutions to everyday gadget issues