Best Mid-Range Gaming PC Build
Best Mid-Range Gaming PC Build
Shopping for PC components can be intimidating if you’re not up to date on hardware news. Fortunately, we’ve done the research for you and have put together three tiered builds (cheap, mid-range, and high-end) geared to deliver great gaming experiences.
Our mid-range gaming PC is tailored around delivering a high-end experience that will be able to max out most games at 1440p.
|CPU: Intel Core i5-7500 (Updated)||$201.89|
|Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo||$29.93|
|Graphics card: MSI GeForce GTX 1070||$379.99|
|Motherboard: Asus Prime H270-Pro (Updated)||$120|
|RAM: G.SKILL Aegis 16GB (2x8GB) DDR4 clocked at 2133MHz||$99.99|
|SSD: SanDisk SD8SBAT-256G-1122 Z400s 256GB SSD||$78.99|
|HDD: Seagate Desktop HDD ST2000DM001 2TB||$59.99|
|Case: Fractal Design Define R5||$119.99|
|PSU: EVGA SuperNOVA 550 G2||$79.99|
Listed prices reflect time of publish.
Click through the gallery to read why we chose our respective components.
CPU: Intel Core i5-7500
Intel’s Core i5-7500 is a great gaming CPU. Retailing for a little over $200, the 14nm Kaby Lake processor has four cores, four threads, and offers 6MB of cache. It also carries a 3.4GHz base frequency and a 3.8GHz turbo frequency--plenty fast for games.
Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo
While the i5-6500 comes with an acceptable freebie air cooler, if you can spare around $30, we suggest upgrading to Cooler Master’s Hyper 212 Evo. This great-bang-for-the-buck air cooler keeps temperatures and acoustics low at an affordable price.
Graphics Card: MSI GeForce GTX 1070
For our graphics card, we recommend Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 1070, which features 1920 CUDA cores, a 1771MHz boost clock, and 8GB of GDDR5 video memory clocked at 8GHz. One of the more affordable variants on the market is MSI's GTX 1070, which you can find under $400. While the 1070 isn’t cheap, it’s actually a beast for the price and will max out most 1440p games with smooth frame rates. For reference, it outperforms Nvidia’s 2015 Titan X GPU, which debuted at $1,000 when it released last year.
Motherboard: Asus Prime H270-Pro
To supplement our CPU, we’re going with Asus’ Prime H270-Pro motherboard. Not only does it have the LGA 1151 socket support we need for our CPU, but it also has four DIMM slots, supports USB Type-C and USB 3.1, and has two PCIe slots. The motherboard is also equipped with Intel’s new H270 chipset.
RAM: G.SKILL Aegis 16GB (2x8GB) DDR4 clocked at 2133MHz
For system memory, we’re going with two 8GB sticks of G.SKILL Aegis DDR4 RAM clocked at 2133MHz. This amounts to 16GB of RAM, which is enough for any game you throw at it and offers enough memory to feed tab-hungry Chrome browsers.
SSD: SanDisk SD8SBAT-256G-1122 Z400s 256GB SSD
For our SSD, we’re going with SanDisk’s SD8SBAT-256G-1122 Z400s. It’s a 256GB SSD large enough for the OS and your favorite games and applications. The 2.5-inch drive offers sequential read and write speeds up to 546MB/s and 342MB/s, respectively. It also isn’t prohibitively expensive at $70.
HDD: Seagate Desktop HDD ST2000DM001 2TB
For mass storage, we’re recommending Seagate’s Desktop HDD ST2000DM001. The 2TB drive is priced affordably at around $75 and offers plenty of space for games and movies. It’s also a 7,200rpm drive, which is faster than common 5,400rpm HDDs.
Case: Fractal Design Define R5
A premium PC deserves a premium case. That’s why we’re recommending Fractal Design’s Define R5 with side-panel window. The R5 is a clean-looking, mid-tower ATX chassis made out of steel and brushed aluminum. It’s also designed to deliver a quiet experience with its noise-dampening material. The front of the case has four USB ports and 3.5mm mic and audio jacks. Inside the chassis, you’ll find removable drive cages that allow you to install up to eight storage drives. The chassis also features a cutout on the back that makes it easier to install a CPU cooler. Finally, when you turn the case on, there’s a little blue accent on the front that gives the R5 some pizazz.
EVGA SuperNOVA 550 G2
To power this rig, we recommend EVGA’s SuperNova 550 G2. It’s a 550-watt 80 Plus Gold-rated power supply unit made of high-quality components, which will help keep your build safe from power shortages. It’s also fully modular, which means you’ll only need to install the necessary cables. This will help you keep your rig nice and tidy.
For under $1,200, you’re getting one of the best gaming PCs with this build. Our rig here is outfitted with near-top-of-the-line components and offers plenty of storage in a sleek, high-performing package.