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My buddy's budget pc build - $500.00

by jbBuilder



Date Published

April 10, 2016

Date Built

Dec. 13, 2015

CPU Clock Rate

4.2 GHz

GPU Core Clock Rate

1.203 GHz

GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate

6.61 GHz


My buddy from work wanted a PC that can play games on a $500.00 budget. It is not overclocked as I didn't want to spend the extra money on advanced cooling solutions and I have no experience with overclocking. He bought the parts from Amazon during Cyber Monday and we were able to get the parts for this PC and had a little left over to pick up the OS right away.

The monitor, keyboard, mouse, and speakers are not included in this build list as my friend bought these either in advance or after the build as he needed.

My friend loves it so far. He doesn't play a lot of AAA titles. He was able to run GTA on high graphics and Fall Out 4 on medium. On most other light games, he can run them on high-max with little to no bottlenecks.

Part Reviews


I was CPU really surprised me. I didn't expect it to run games as well as it has. There is a lot of negativity regarding this little guy. But, so far it runs most games without bottlenecking with the GPU with the exception of the AAA games. Most people say it runs hot so I might consider getting a better heatsink in the future.


Decent motherboard with the fan pins that I needed. Great motherboard on a budget, but not your overclocking board. That is fine with me as I was not planning on any overclocking anyways.

Months later, I haven't had any problems with this motherboard.


Good pair of memory sticks. Works well with no problems.


I heard WD is a very reliable brand. 1TB drive for a good price point and it has not failed on me yet. It's been less than a year since I got this, but I feel pretty confident in this drive.

Video Card

This is a powerful piece of hardware. We were able to get this over the 750 Ti with the extra money in our budget. This card has been able to run most games on medium to high settings. We have even been able to run GTA on high with smooth gameplay (40+ fps).


This case was a bit tricky to work with. Case is not very sturdy andhdd cages cannot be removed for better airflow. It does feature some decent cable management and the cages are tool less though. Can't really complain with a case of this price.

Power Supply

Choose this power supply because of it's great reviews and plenty of wattage room if we ever decided to upgrade. Works very well with no problems.

Optical Drive

Just a CD drive to read our Windows disk. We didn't really need much more for it. Does what it's made more with no issues.

Case Fan

Decent fan that gives a nice red led glow to my case. Was kinda disappointed when I didn't feel much air being pulled into the case. Though the HDD cages may factor into that as well. So far so good though.

Comments Sorted by:

marseryy 1 Build 1 point 35 months ago

For a budget rig everything looks great! +1

FACUNDO 13 Builds 1 point 35 months ago

Looks nice!


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maggotshero 10 Builds 1 point 35 months ago

The stock clock on that cpu is 4.2 ghz... Why would he need to overclock it? The highest speed requirement i've seen for any game is 4-4.2 ghz.

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jbBuilder submitter 1 Build 1 point 35 months ago

Might go this route eventually. But, I get more cautious since this PC isn't my own, but a friend of mine that I did it for. Might talk to him to see if he is interested.

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SR91 1 Build 3 points 35 months ago

That's probably not the price they paid for the items, since price colors are in blue it's just from the merchant with the lowest price of the item(s). However, if the price color was in black, that means the builder entered in the exact price they paid for the items manually, instead of going with the "default" merchant with the lowest price.

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Jäßßäwöçkëë 3 Builds 1 point 35 months ago

I was actually thinking the same thing about that gpu. Honestly for a few bucks more he could have gotten a r9 380. Possibly could have gotten it for the same price he paid really .... the power color version goes on sale for $175 regularly.

Jerkface155 2 points 35 months ago

It probably goes on sale because it sucks, the cooler isn't very good. (Coming from someone who owns a Powercolor 380)

Jäßßäwöçkëë 3 Builds 1 point 35 months ago

oh wow. I love my MSI 380. Glad I chose it .... especially since I found out it's capable of 1440p at playable frames.

Jerkface155 2 points 35 months ago

Yeah, I'm really upset about it. I'm thinking about selling it and maybe getting something better like an MSI one or XFX one, should've made a better choice than power color :/

Jäßßäwöçkëë 3 Builds 1 point 35 months ago

I highly recommend the MSI 4GB version! I'm pretty freaking happy with it! It kills in 1080p

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Jerkface155 1 point 29 months ago

It's not a bad card, Its just I hate how much heat it produces. Can't overclock it or anything. At least from my experience

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jbBuilder submitter 1 Build 1 point 35 months ago

With a little more research I did after the fact I actually came to regret the purchase decision we made with that card. You are absolutely right, we really could've gotten just a better card overall. Something for me to keep in mind in the future.

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jbBuilder submitter 1 Build 1 point 35 months ago

Indeed, I was still rather new to PC building at the time of this setup. It was a good learning experience for me.