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I evaluated more than 100 gaming PCs in the PC gaming market to create my list of 10 top contender computers for the best gaming PC under $600 for this site. I have extensive experience in software development and love fast CPUs, powerful GPUs, and plenty of RAM.
My top pick from the list is the HP ProDesk 600 G1 SFF PC. For one thing, this PC build boasts one quad-core i7 CPU. Combined with a dedicated Nvidia GeForce GPU, this PC can deliver some of the best performance across gaming titles like Valorant, COD Warzone, and Red Dead Redemption 2.
While the HP ProDesk is my choice for the best gaming PC build, in my opinion, the Coofun PC build is super for streaming to a site while gaming. It’s small case and low price point make it one of the best machines for portability.
Check out the table guide below to take a look at all of my top selections and their components.
The HP ProDesk 600 G1 SFF is a gaming-ready rig for a budget gamer and tops my list. The quad-core i7 is a beast, reaching clock rates of 3.9 GHz, which provides a quick load time for games – on par with some SkyTech builds. For the best gaming performance, you’ll need more than the stock 16 GB of DDR3 RAM (upgrade up to 32GB with additional RAM sticks).
In addition, the HP build provides a powerhouse dedicated graphics card on the motherboard with the name Nvidia GT 730. With 4 GB of GDDR5 VRAM on the board, the Nvidia delivers top-tier graphics performance at 1080p settings – on par with the GTX 1650 or GTX 1060 type processors. The graphics card comes with HDMI, DVI, and VGA ports.
The Coofun Mini PC is a small gaming desktop which delivers fast performance at all top-tier resolutions with an AMD Ryzen 5 Pro 2500U CPU. This second-edition Ryzen 5 is a beast, delivering clock speeds of up to 3.6 GHz with four cores and 8 threads in this Ryzen.
Although not a GTX 1650, the installed Radeon RX Vega 8 pairs with the Ryzen CPU on the motherboard to run at up to 2.4 GHz. The same Coofun PC also supports high-resolution gaming with HDMI output for a monitor.
The Coofun PC comes with in-built WiFi 6 support, Bluetooth, 2 gigabyte-speed ethernet connectors on the side panel, a keyboard and mouse, and the Windows 10 Pro operating system. The small case and lightweight design of this PC makes sense for small areas.
The HP PC M01-F1120 is an excellent budget gaming PC build in the market with an AMD Ryzen 3 4300G processor. The Ryzen 3 has four cores and 8 threads reaching clock speeds of up to 3.8 GHz. The Ryzen 3 is built on a 7nm process node with an integrated GPU.
Although not a GTX 1060 or GTX 1650, the integrated AMD Radeon RX GPU paired with the Ryzen 3 on the motherboard provides high-speed graphics performance at 1080p producing crisp image details. The GPU is upgradable, for example, by adding a RX 5700 on the board with the Ryzen 3.
The same HP build also comes with a DVD writable drive and plenty of USB ports in the side panel for external drives, a wired mouse, a headset, and a plug-and-play system. One problem is the power supply unit (PSU), which is limited to 180W and may need to be upgraded to source extra power to the Ryzen 3 and all peripherals controlled by the Ryzen 3 during intensive gaming sessions.
The HP PC M01-F1014includes a Pentium Gold G6400 and an integrated UHD 630 GPU. The dual-core processor runs at up to 4 GHz, which enables more instructions per second for intensive gaming applications. Although not one of the GTX 1060 or GTX 1650, the integrated GPU supports 4K resolution for the best video quality with ease. The HP build also includes both VGA and HDMI ports.
With an 8GB of DDR4 RAM stick, you’ll have enough storage for light gaming – way more than the 4GB available in common devices. For the best performance in AAA gaming, you’ll want to increase the RAM storage by a lot.
The HP build comes with in-built WiFi 5 and Bluetooth 4.2 for reliable wireless connectivity. While not a linux build, this PC comes with a pre-installed version of Microsoft Windows 10 Home operating system, a wired keyboard and mouse, and 4 USB connections in the front panel for 4GB USB sticks, an EVGA gaming keyboard with a USB connector, external drives, and a plug-and-play system. You can also get a good value combo that you can order with a monitor.
If you like to get your processors from AMD, you’ll be a fan of the AVGPC Max Gaming PC. For a budget gaming desktop, you get a whole lot of value, starting with the six-core Ryzen 5 3600. It has a solid base clock of 3.6GHz and is capable of boosting up to 4.2GHz, which is more than enough for most tasks.
It comes with only 8GB of DDR4 RAM though, so the first thing you might want to do is double that. For most people, the 480GB SSD should be sufficient, especially if you keep a few things stored in the cloud.
The GPU is an Nvidia GT 1030, which is far from bleeding edge, but you’ll be pleased to know that there are a handful of games from 2021. It has enough juice to play on Low settings. Plus, if you’re into titles like Fortnite, Minecraft, and other popular multiplayer games, you won’t run into any issues.
This gaming desktop from Alarco has an i7 with a clock speed of 3.4GHz, though it is only a second-gen model. It is a budget PC after all, but that shouldn’t stop you from getting 16GB of DDR3 memory and 1TB of storage. Some people prefer the larger storage sizes that you can get from mechanical drives, so the fact that it’s not an SSD won’t be a downside to some.
For your gaming needs, this comes with an Nvidia GTX 750. It’s a relatively dated card but still packs a punch for gamers who spend most of their time gaming online or playing titles that are less intensive. You get 4GB of VRAM, so this card was clearly no slouch in its time.
The internals are packed in an RGB case that comes with a remote. This way, you have a lot of different options if you want to give your PC a new look. You also get a one-year warranty with this computer, so it’s easy to see why it’s such a good deal.
Another PC build under $600 to look at is the UM350 Mini PCwhich sports an AMD Ryzen 5 Pro 2500U processor with four cores and eight threads. This Ryzen processor can clock in at more than 3.6 GHz. In addition, there is 16GB of DDR4 to reduce time lag for data access for the Ryzen processor and 512 GB of SSD for storing videos and streaming takes – more than the 4GB available in low-end devices.
Although not a GTX 1650, the integrated Radeon RX Vega 8 graphics card on the motherboard has capacity to run at clock rates of 1.1 GHz and supports 4K screen resolution at up to 60 fps. The same graphics card also provides a triple RGB display output with a HDMI, DisplayPort, and USB-C Port.
The UM250 build is not a linux machine, instead coming with Windows 10 Pro pre-installed, 2 ethernet connectors, 4 USB 3.1 ports, WiFi 6, Bluetooth 5.1 compatibility, and a keyboard and mouse. You can also get a good value for money option with a monitor.
The Dell Inspiron 3880 model comes with a gaming-ready edition 10 i3 processor. With 8GB of DDR4 RAM and 1 TB of hard drive storage, the Dell Inspiron tower has way more memory than the 4GB of RAM available in low cost computers. The i3 can reach clock rates of thousands of MHz for a faster load time between game scenes and a quick in-game reply to your inputs. The read/write rate can reach more than 2.6 GHz to improve IPS, outperforming some big name builds, such as a SkyTech build kit.
Although not a GTX 1650, the UHD Graphics 630 on the motherboard provides ample graphics performance for 1080p gaming. Upgrading all of the random-access storage parts to 32GB will improve performance for anything AAA gaming level like PUBG.
The Dell Inspiron build is another gaming PC that comes with Windows 10 Home OS pre-installed, includes a wired keyboard and mouse, and an optical drive. At just 14.8L, anyone can fit the small, lightweight Inspiron on or under most desk spaces, making it the right size for easy cable management.
It can be said without a doubt that the Skytech Archangel 3.0 is a top contender for the best desktop you can get without breaking the bank. To start off with, you get a Ryzen 3 3100, which is modest but capable, with a 3.6GHz base clock.
The CPU is paired with 8GB of DDR4 RAM, which might have been better if there was more. However, you shouldn’t have too many issues with load times thanks to the 500GB SSD.
The real star of the show is the Nvidia GTX 1050 Ti. As of 2022, there are very few games that this card can’t run on Low settings, and powered by a 600W PSU, you’re good to go. Needless to say, it comes in an RGB case that is absolutely gorgeous.
If you’re a fan of all things AMD, you’re going to love this system from HP. This brand doesn’t appear that often for budget entries like these, yet you get a Ryzen 3 5300G CPU with a base clock of 4.0GHz, paired with an AMD Radeon RX 5500. With 4GB of VRAM, this is a pretty satisfying CPU and GPU combo at this price.
You get a well-sized 512GB SSD to hold all your game files and load them rapidly, with 8GB of DDR4 RAM to keep your PC lag-free. This desktop will also come with a mouse and keyboard from HP so you can get right into your games the moment you set this up.
One of the most important things for someone to consider when choosing a prebuilt gaming PC is selecting an adequate CPU for all of your gaming needs. For most people, selecting a CPU option with the highest clock rates possible is the best approach to maximize the IPS envelope and generate a quick in-game reply gaming scenarios like selecting input buttons in virtual reality gameplay areas.
Generally, 10th-generation processors and 3rd-generation AMD Ryzen CPUs will have the highest numbers for clock rates. You may want to add a CPU cooler if your CPU has overclocking potential. Wraith Stealth coolers with RGB lighting are a good value option for improving the thermaltake of the CPU case and helping you to get a quick idea of CPU temperature at a glance.
The next thing that everyone should check in the specs article is the GPU of the gaming PC. Many people don’t realize that in most entry-level gaming machines, the quality of the graphics card (e.g. GeForce GTX 2060, Radeon RX Vega, and RX 5700) will dictate how much lag you experience.
Thankfully, most gaming machines (even ones with integrated graphics cards) provide customization options of upgrading the graphics card or offer a product combo that you can order (e.g., with a Radeon RX 5700 series). Make sure that your graphics card has a high render speed so that nothing gets skipped. Alternatively, budget for upgrading your graphics card with a dedicated GPU and ensure that the GPU you have in mind is compatible with both the motherboard (e.g. AMD B450 Gaming X) and the CPU of the gaming PC that you plan to purchase to get the best price to performance ratio for your money.
Another thing to look at for PC gaming is the quality of the RGB screen. Do you like 4K resolution or doing you prefer gaming at 1080p settings or lower? For one thing, most competition-level gamers like the gamer Shroud prefer 1080p gaming to maximize all of the frame rates, the refresh rate, and performance, but I’ll note that the eye-candy of super crisp 4K resolution is often hard for people to resist. For budget PCs, question increasing to 4K resolution as this may reduce frame rates back down to below 60 fps in all games like Fortnite, Rainbow Six Siege, and Apex Legends.
Data storage options are a key determinate of CPU rates. At high clock rates, the CPU may have to wait for several clock cycles for a data item to be fetched or for a runtime copy of a static variable to be read from memory – this is critical time lost causing everything to lag during a game scene.
Let’s review the basics. Generally, CPU cache memory is the default option for storage. Next, RAM is slower but still quite fast in modern gaming systems usually available from 4GB. The slowest kind of storage is ROM, such as an SSD (e.g., ADATA SU635) in most systems. The larger the CPU cache, the faster your games and applications will load and the more your gaming ability will translate into positive competition results. Most PCs have at least one expansion port to hold up to 32GB or sometimes 64GB of RAM memory.
Depending on your default set-up, you’ll want to peruse the rest of the prebuilt gaming PC components and note anything that you’ll need, like an EVGA RGB gaming keyboard, a mouse, a video card, audio jacks for your VR headset cables, headphones, or ear cups, and an adapter kit for your Xbox One for playing games like GTA V, The Witcher 3, and Battlefield V. This reduces your labor in getting everything set-up. For example, a part list may include things like one dual-channel HDMI and VGA connection or a tri-channel HDMI, DP, and VGA connection.
In addition, if you want to load a game component from a hard disk (DVD or CD), then something to consider is the optical drive. If your PC doesn’t have one, you can often get one through a combo order. Choosing 5GB/s speed ports will ensure that video, game, and software load times are short.
Many entry-level gaming machines don’t run on a linux operating system. Anyone who prefers a linux build should both install Wine and purchase 64 bit Windows keys so that you can run Windows 10 - a compatibility requirement for some games, like Fortnite and GTA 5.
For the best gaming experience and to reduce concentration problems, make sure that you also have a comfortable memory foam chair and a wrist rest.
There are many contenders for the best $600 gaming PC and choosing the right budget build for the world esports titles you want to play can be challenging. Although any of these PCs would be an excellent gaming machine, nothing but the HP ProDesk tops my list.