Table of Contents
- A Review of the Top Gaming PC Under $500
- Acer Aspire TC885 PC – Best overall gaming pc under 500
- Acer Aspire Premium High Tower PC – Best gaming pc under 500 for upgrades
- AVGPC Max Gaming PC – Most versatile gaming pc under 500
- CyberpowerPC Gamer Ultra Desktop PC – Best value gaming pc under 500
- iBuyPower Enthusiast Gaming PC – Best custom themed gaming pc under 500
- What To Look For in a Gaming PC For The Budget
- Should You Build or Buy With a $500 Budget?
- How to Custom Build Your Own Gaming PC for Under $500
- Final Words
PC gaming is livelier than ever, with components becoming more affordable with every new release. While you might have had to consider large budgets to buy or build a gaming rig in the past, setting up can now be so much easier.
For people working with smaller budgets, it is not difficult to enjoy a great gaming experience (1) with all the options available. But what should you look for in the right gaming PC while working with a budget? We offer a detailed look at the best gaming PC under 500, as well as provide a custom build that could be a great alternative to the prebuilt picks.
|Acer Aspire TC885 PC||1 TB||8 GB DDR 4||Check Price|
|Acer Aspire Premium High Tower PC||1 TB||8 GB DDR 4||Check Price|
|1 TB||8 GB DDR 4|
|CyberpowerPC Gamer Ultra Desktop PC||1 TB||8 GB DDR 3||Check Price|
|iBuyPower Enthusiast Gaming PC||1000 GB MHD||8 GB DDR 3||Check Price|
A Review of the Top Gaming PC Under $500
Acer Aspire TC885 PC – Best overall gaming pc under 500
The Acer Aspire TC885 PC is a newer release, having been made available in 2019, but it is a great budget choice for gamers. The all wireless technology offers great connectivity speeds that are crucial to a great gaming experience.
It offers an 8 GB Ram, which should run games comfortably, but it can also be upgraded to handle heavier duty games. The 8th gen Intel Core i3 processor is great for the budget, with an integrated Intel graphics card offering decent output for games.
This pc has 4 USB 2.0 and 3.0 a piece, and includes a wireless mouse and keyboard for great value. This model offers impressive sound output, thanks to the high definition 5.1 audio channel with surround sound support.
As an added benefit, it also comes with the Acer care center that provides a range of updates and checks to ensure your computer is running well every time. If you are looking for a great budget rig that can run games with minimal fuss, the Acer Aspire T885 PC could be an ideal choice.
- Immersive sound for a great gaming experience
- Upgradable rig offers great potential
- Very easy to set up and use
- Not the best processor for heavy duty games
The Acer Aspire TC885 PC is a value pick on a budget. It is very versatile, and can help meet other computing needs you could have as well. With the right customizations and upgrades (2), this pc will rival models in a much higher price point.
The Acer Aspire Premium high tower PC features a 3.9 GHz Intel Core i3 processor and an integrated Intel HD graphics 630 card. While the specs are not ideal for very heavy duty games, the PC will handle medium to light gaming needs without a fuss.
The full tower frame offers a large capacity for upgrades as well, which makes it an ideal starter option for gamers who are looking to grow their build slowly. This PC comes with a USB keyboard and mouse, and also features a preinstalled Windows 10 Home OS. It includes multiple USB 3.0 and 2.0 ports, as well as a HDMI and VGA port for unlimited connectivity.
You can connect multiple controllers to an external display from this rig when gaming without a problem. The PC is also suited for online gaming thanks to its 802.11ac Wi-Fi support and Ethernet connectivity. The immersive 5.1 surround sound audio should enhance your gaming atmosphere for an enjoyable all round experience.
- Impressive sound quality
- Easy to set up and use
- Includes USB keyboard and mouse
- Can be noisy
The full tower Acer Aspire premium PC offers great value for upgrades. It performs well for a large variety of games as is, and will be a great budget option for people who only game lightly. The1 TB HDD and 8 GB RAM should meet the requirements of most games.
AVGPC Max Gaming PC – Most versatile gaming pc under 500
The AVGPC Max Gaming PC offers an impressive GPU for gaming when you consider its price point. The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 card is a regular feature for models that range about 50% more than this rig, which goes to show its value for gaming.
Its AMD RYZEN 5 1500X 4-Core unlocked processor will meet the demands of most games, and could even ensure decent output for heavier games on light settings. This model also features the Free Cooler Master CPU cooler, which keeps this critical component from overheating. This improves performance and durability of your PC even when used regularly.
It is very easy to set up, and includes preinstalled windows 10 Professional, as well as a USB keyboard and mouse. If you are looking for a gaming PC under 500 that also works well for your home or office needs, the AVGPC Max could be a great bet.
- Runs silently for most games
- Great GPU for gaming
- Innovative CPU cooler ensures minimal risk of overheating
- Heavy duty games work best on light setting
The AVGPC Max is powerful and versatile. It offers a dedicated graphics card and a great processor, as well as sufficient storage and RAM for unrivaled gaming. This PC will be a value choice for gamers who also have to address other PC needs.
CyberpowerPC Gamer Ultra Desktop PC – Best value gaming pc under 500
The CyberpowerPC Gamer Ultra Desktop PC comes with a preinstalled 64-bit Windows 10 OS and a USB keyboard and mouse, which makes it very easy to set up. This PC also comes with an AMD Radeon R7 video card, as well as the AMD FX-6300 Six-core processor, allowing for great game simulation.
It features a 1000 GB Mechanical HDD and 8 GB DDR3 RAM, which can be upgraded for great gaming performance for heavy duty games. The CyberpowerPC Gamer Ultra also offers Wi-Fi and Ethernet connectivity, which enables support for online games.
This PC is versatile enough to handle other uses, and it can be a great all-rounder for your home. The lifetime tech support and 1 year warranty on parts and labor will make managing your PC easier in case of any hitches.
- Great 7.1 audio output
- Dual tempered glass sides for custom themed set up
- Suitable for online gaming
- Can be noisy when used for heavy duty gaming
The CyberpowerPC Gamer Ultra is a great choice for beginners. If you have a new interest in gaming, it could be a great budget choice to consider. This pc will deliver on a budget, and offers room for upgrades in future. It runs games very well, and could be one of the top picks for the price.
iBuyPower Enthusiast Gaming PC – Best custom themed gaming pc under 500
The iBuyPower Enthusiast Gaming PC features an impressive 7.1 audio channel that ensures an immersive experience when gaming. This is further enhanced by the RGB illumination and tempered glass case that suits a custom gaming hub.
This PC includes a gaming keyboard and mouse, which are very well designed for your gaming needs. It comes with Windows 10 home installed, as well as a 1 TB HDD and 8 GB DDR 4 RAM components to meet your gaming requirements. We tested Fortnight on the Enthusiast Gaming PC and the performance exceeded our expectations, which suggests that this model can run most games optimally.
The special add-ons and upgrade capacity of the iBuypower Enthusiast gaming PC offer value for gamers who are looking for a custom rig that is specially built for gaming.
- High quality build is made in the USA
- Effective tech support
- Offers USB keyboard and mouse
- RGB case offers a custom touch for your gaming hub
- Not the best video card for a gaming PC under 500
The NVIDIA GeForce GT 710 is not as competitive as the GTX 1050 on the AVGPC Max, but it still offers a powerful enough performance for beginners and light gamers. It can be upgraded (3), and offers an impressive range of connectivity options. This PC will handle online games well, and should be a versatile and budget friendly alternative to other gaming PC picks featured.
What To Look For in a Gaming PC For The Budget
Gaming computers can be a scary prospect for many buyers because they are generally perceived as being too expensive. Some gaming rigs will run into the thousands, which could be beyond the budget for many people.
Even medium level gaming PCs are a bit out of budget, with models ranging between 800 and 100. But you can get a great value pick for 500. Most gaming rigs for this budget will lack the high end components of options in a higher price point, with some GPU and CPU components going for this much. But you can still find a value rig that meets your gaming expectations within the budget.
With the right GPU, you can match the graphics quality on some PlayStation and Xbox models. Options such as the NVIDIA GTX 750 or AMD R7 will offer great quality graphics output, allowing for an intense experience for gamers. Most gaming PC under 500 will feature i3, i5 and AMD FX processors, which will offer a sufficient performance for most games.
Alongside these components, you should also consider the connectivity of your gaming PC, as well as the upgrade prospects. When buying an entry level PC, it is important to consider future upgrades.
You may want to consider options that can support the latest tech, allowing for a hassle free upgrade process. Mid and full tower gaming PC rigs offer great value for multiple components and upgrades, which allows you to customize your gaming hub (4) as you spend more time gaming. The aesthetic value of your build may also play a part in helping you find a great build to support any future customization.
Top Tips to Help You Find the Best PC for Your Budget
When buying your gaming PC, here are some handy tips to consider:
- You do not need the best GPU to run your preferred games. The NVIDIA RTX 2080 ti is one of the best options on the market, but it can be too highly priced for most budgets. You can get good frame rates from a budget friendly pick such as the GTX 1050 and other similar options, or the AMD R7. Having high end GPU is crucial to performance, but decent mid-range performers could work just as well.
- Your keyboard and mouse are crucial, but often overlooked. You should find models with dedicated gaming components, or consider gaming friendly options when building your own PC.
- The quality of tech support provided and the ease of installation and use of a specific model can be great identifiers of a value pick. Additional features such as the length of the warranty can help protect your purchase for maximum benefit.
Should You Build or Buy With a $500 Budget?
When it comes to a dedicated gaming PC, DIY builds (5) are commonplace. Most gamers would be interested in building their own PC as opposed to buying if they had a 500 budget. The custom build allows you to maximize on aspects that would suit your needs while compromising on those not perceived as being too crucial.
For instance, in our custom build featured below, we have sacrificed the HDD capacity for a better performing GPU and CPU. If you do not have the skills to pick out and expertise to assemble, then a prebuild pick would be best for you. If you can piece your PC together and know what to look for, a custom build would offer great value for you.
How to Custom Build Your Own Gaming PC for Under $500
The specifications on the best gaming PC under 500 can be a little underwhelming, especially when you look at some of the components available. Still, prebuilt gaming rigs can offer great value, as the AVGPC Max and Acer Aspire have shown in our review and testing. If you are only starting out, they can be great first picks that support future upgrades for a better gaming system.
But can you make your own build for the same budget? Custom built gaming pc offer great value for specialized gaming needs. If you know your priorities, you can get a much better PC for your needs with the same budget.
With this budget, you should expect at least VR compatibility, 1440p gaming and much more! So, what should you go for when building your PC from the ground up (6) for 500? We carefully researched the best build for the budget, exploring the latest tech in every category to ensure a great rig at the price. These are our recommended picks.
CPU – The AMD Ryzen 5 2600 Processor offers a great performance. It is a valuable pick for our build because it does not bottleneck our GPU.
GPU – The XFX Radeon RX 570 RS XXX Edition is a better choice than 4/5 options we’ve covered. It is widely considered as one of the best buys on a budget for a custom build.
RAM — Corsair Vengeance LPX 16 GB DDR4 RAM Chip offers double the value when compared to RAM chips in all our picks. You should be able to multitask and run games seamlessly.
HDD — The Crucial BX500 240 GB is limited when compared to the 1 TB capacity of other models featured, but it is a great starting point for players with a small selection of games. The compromise on HDD capacity for performance can be a challenge for some gamers, but external HDD are easy to access and offer better overall value for gamers with smaller budgets.
PSU – The non-modular Thermaltake Smart 500W PSU offers sufficient protection for your PC, and guarantees performance in the long term.
Case – The NZXT H510 ATX mid-tower gaming PC Case is a great budget choice for gamers. It offers great connectivity and cooling options, as well as sufficient space for multiple components. This case supports future upgrades as well.
Motherboard – The ProSeries PRO-VDH Motherboard is a tried and trusted performer which will handle your gaming needs. When coupled with the right cooling system, you should be able to enjoy seamless games on your gaming pc for a long time.
Our tests on Fortnite, League of Legends, Overwath, Rainbow Six: Siege, Grand Theft Auto V and Team Fortress 2 at 1440p and 1080p60 on medium settings outperformed all our prebuilt pc alternatives.
The special build of the AVGPC Max gaming PC makes it our top pick for the best gaming pc under 500. It offers a great GPU and processor, as well as decent storage and RAM for most games. The gaming rig is very well designed, and it will be a great fit for your hub. It also offers multiple connectivity options for multiplayer and online games, which makes it fun for friends and family. The AVGPC Max gaming rig is versatile, easy to set up and well suited for your gaming needs.
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