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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.
Another PC build under $600 to look at is the UM250 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 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 Beelink Mini PC SEi10 combines a 10th-edition i3 processor with 16 GB of RAM to deliver some of the best performance in the PC market for a gaming rig at a budget price point. The dual-core i3 has a burst clock rate of up to 4.1 GHz at max settings – high numbers for a budget gaming rig.
With a large, compact SSD with 512 GB of storage in the M.2 standard, the Beelink stores anything you’ll need, such as videos, games, and files. In addition, the NVMe storage management enables a quicker load time for the SSD. The random-access storage is expandable up to 64 GB and the ROM storage is expandable up to 2TB.
Although not a GTX 1650, the Beelink build comes with a high-performance graphics card with capacity to produce ultra-high-definition 4K resolution on monitors with a high refresh rate. The Beelink also comes with Windows 10 Pro pre-installed, WiFi 6 support, Bluetooth 5.0, and a keyboard and mouse.
The Acer Aspire TC-895-UA91 is a gaming computer with super performance at budget prices. A edition 10 Core i3 delivers high clock speeds with 4 cores and 8GB of DDR4 RAM. The fact is that the majority of gamers will need more RAM (upgrade up to 32GB) for a quicker in-game reply to control button inputs.
In addition, the Acer Aspire comes with 512GB of NVMe SSD which provides lots of data storage in a compact form factor. With upgrades, the SSD can store 1TB of data files.
The same Aspire build comes with a DVD writer with a double-layer drive, WiFi 6, Bluetooth 5.1, a keyboard and mouse, and a pre-installed version of Windows 10 Home with all associated drivers. The Acer build also comes with a gigabyte-speed ethernet port and plenty of USB 3.2 connections in the front panel. You can also get a product combo with a monitor for a low price – a good value for money option.
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 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.
The Acer Aspire TC-885-UA91 model sports the 9th iteration of the Intel i3, producing high clock rates for an advantage in critical in-game moments. With 8GB of DDR4, the Acer provides quick memory access with room for up to 32 GB, which is super for intensive gaming – a lot more than the 4GB available in low-end devices. The 512 GB SSD is large enough to store videos and software, but this is also upgradable. You can replace the installed version with a 1TB SSD for extra storage space.
The Acer Aspire stock build comes with several useful features, such as one double-layer DVD writer, WiFi and Bluetooth support, multiple USB 3.1 with gigabyte-speed data transfer rates, a PSU, a headphone plug-in, and Windows 10 Home OS pre-installed.
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.
Although a business laptop line may not be something that most people would consider for gaming PC builds, the Lenovo IdeaCentre 510A Business Computer outperforms several big name brands such as a SkyTech PC building kit which costs more.
With an 8th-edition i3 with clock rates of up to 3.6 GHz, the Lenovo produces some of the best gaming performance for triple A games at a budget price point. Another reason that you’ll want this machine is the super multitasking performance of the i3, which lets you stream your games for fans while running applications on your sidebar as you play.
Another thing that makes the Lenovo IdeaCentre build great is the 1TB HDD storage medium, which can reach 7200 revolutions per minute which is upgradable to a SATA3 SSD. Although not a GTX 1650, the IdeaCentre build includes an UHD graphics card for high-quality gaming graphics at 1080p. This Lenovo gets the job done, rendering all images, video frames, and web content quickly.
The Lenovo comes with everything: Windows 10 Pro OS pre-installed, WiFi support, Bluetooth 4.0 compatibility, and a keyboard and mouse.
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.