The space of the DIY gaming PC is at one of the more interesting times in its history, as every component is improving and becoming more affordable with every passing year. Building a PC at home also offers the advantage of choosing your own parts at your own price, based on your own workload and style; the components, while purchased as separate pieces work better together without the pre-built markup.
Whether your budget is $500 or $10,000, you can build yourself a high-performance gaming PC that powers the latest games and leaves room for future upgrades. The components listed below will run about $650 and should support any game, from simple graphics in the popular "Minecraft" to lifelike graphics in the highly-anticipated "Battlefield Hardline."
All of the parts of a gaming PC are built around speed, so you won't be able to blame the hardware if the game isn't going the way you want. However, it's important to keep in mind that certain components will have a larger impact on your PC's speed than others.
The processor is the heart of your system and, therefore, one of the more important pieces. It is unlikely that a CPU would change without a complete system rebuild, so think of it as an investment in the future of your PC gaming. Intel's latest generation Core i5 processors are some of the most versatile on the market, powerful enough for gaming and photo/video editing, while only costing a fraction of the newer i7.
If the CPU is what makes a computer, the GPU is what makes it for gamers. The GPU is a dedicated piece of gaming hardware, and like most things, when it comes to graphics cards, you get what you pay for. Knowing this will prove helpful when determining your budget and choosing a GPU. Generally speaking, the more expensive the card, the higher the quality and performance.
Good RAM is an essential part of any system as it allows a larger cache between the hard drive and processor. These days, RAM is fairly cheap and fast, plus it tends to be the price/performance upgrade with the most ROI. For gaming, 8GB or 16GB of DDR3 is a good range.
While the CPU and GPU usually get the most attention in discussions like this, one of the more overlooked components is your hard drive. Without a sufficient hard drive, the CPU and GPU will process information faster than the hard drive can deliver it. When it comes to a gaming PC, the most important thing to remember is the speed at which it operates. Either a 10,000 RPM or solid state drive will be best. So far, spinning drives are the cheaper and more spacious option but this has changed rapidly over the last few years as SSD prices drop and performance improves.
These particular components for a gaming PC is on a lower price scale, but it's an efficient build with room for future expansion.
The components listed above were chosen to get the best bang for your buck and to get you playing right now.