Jun 032013
Corsair Carbide Series 200R AMD Gaming PC CaseA Budget Performance AMD Gaming PC Build -July 2013 Update

This guide will focus on building the best budget performance AMD gaming PC without killing your wallet. While Intel gets a lot of the spotlight these days, AMD has solid components that are budget friendly, and offer compelling performance. I have received quite a few requests lately regarding an AMD gaming PC build for $500-$600. You can get really decent performance with this kind of budget and I will update this post monthly so you get the best deal and best hardware combinations. You want a great AMD gaming PC … so let’s build one ;).






The Thought Process – Budget Performance AMD Gaming PC


When choosing components for any gaming PC build I usually focus my component budget in the following order:

  • Graphics Card – most of your budget will be spent on this single component and it is important to your framerate. Try to get the best card for your money while staying within your budget.
  • CPU – nothing less than a quad core will do for newer titles, however it has been shown that Intel’s Hyper Threading does increase performance on some of today’s titles.
  • Motherboard – you can go cheap here and save some money if you are strapped for cash but I like to have upgrade options. Try not to get too fancy if a new socket design is on the horizon and you plan on upgrading within a year or two.
  • Memory – 8 GB is currently the minimum standard for gaming builds and as of today there is no reason to have more than that for gaming.
  • Storage  – a traditional hard drive is all you really need but get an SSD if your budget allows
  • Power Supply – you want to reliably power your components and look to the future if planning on doing SLI or CrossFireX
  • Case – this will house all of your components and will play a major factor in keeping them cool. While aesthetics may be important to you, look for a case with good cooling options and cable management to make your build reliable and easy to build.

Though others may have a different logical approach, this one has served me well. So let’s get to the components list for our budget performance AMD Gaming PC Build and a short summary of why I chose each component.

Components – Budget Performance AMD Gaming PC Build

FX 6 Core ProcessorCPU
 – AMD FX-6300 3.5 Ghz Black Edition

The FX-6300 is based on AMD’s Piledriver architecture and running at 3.5 Ghz (4.1 Ghz turbo), this 6 core beast has a lot of power for the money. With an impressive PassMark score of 6399 it’s right at the level of Intel’s older Sandy Bridge i5 2500K in terms of performance. While offering impressive performance for the dollar, it does however use a lot of juice in the process with a TDP of 95 watts. For overclocking I recommend that you buy a quality power supply and aftermarket cooler to combat the high power draw. This CPU will not bottleneck your graphics card and can be overclocked easily. For the price is an awesome deal for the performance you get.



Gigabyte GA-970A-D3MOTHERBOARD – GIGABYTE GA-970A-D3 AM3+ AMD 970 ATX AMD Motherboard

The Gigabyte Gigabyte GA-970A-D3 is an awesome choice for price to performance ratio. It is a fully featured ATX motherboard that will allow you to easily upgrade in the future. The board is compatible with CrossFireX and is a great overclocker, allowing you to push the Phenom II x4 965 to the extreme. I have no trouble recommending this board and Gigabyte has always been a reliable choice for gaming motherboards.



Kingstorn Technology HyperX 8 GBMEMORY – Kingston Technology HyperX 8 GB (2×4 GB) 1600 MHz DDR3 Dual Channel Kit

Kingston Hyper X memory is stable and fast. I have recommended this memory in quite a few of my builds as the price cannot be beat. It runs cool and can be overclocked fairly easy if you need the extra performance.


MSI Radeon HD 7790 OC 1GBGPU MSI Radeon HD 7790 OC 1GB GDDR5

The MSI Radeon HD 7790 OC is built around AMD’s awesome 28nm GCN (Graphics Core Next) GPU design. The  MSI Radeon HD 7790 OC should play any game at mid/high settings at 1080P while maintaining a very playable frame rate . With 1 GB of fast onboard GDDR5 riding on a 128 bit memory bus it will allow large textures to be loaded and provide stunning visuals.  With a great 3 year parts and 2 year labor warranty MSI has hit a sweet spot with a great price to performance ratio.


Corsair Carbide Series 200R Gaming PC Case - ProfileCASE 
Corsair Carbide Series 200R Compact ATX Case

The Corsair Carbide Series 200R is a mid tower case that has a lot of room and easy cable management. The 200R has two 120mm fans pre-installed and an additional six places to add fans to keep all of your components cool. The case can accommodate graphics cards up to 430mm in length and has room for three 5.25″ and four 3.5″ drives. With it’s great build quality and visual appeal I have no problem recommending this case.







Seagate Barracuda HDDHARD DRIVE – Seagate Barracuda 1 TB HDD SATA 6 Gb/s NCQ 64MB Cache Hard Drive

Our AMD gaming PC wouldn’t be complete without a fast primary storage drive to house all of our games and OS. The Seagate Barracuda hard drives are fast and run cool and are very reliable.  With a bargain price and a  2 year warranty this drive will be great for our AMD gaming PC.




Asus 24X DVD-RWOPTICAL DRIVE – Asus 24xDVD-RW Serial ATA Internal OEM Drive

Optical drives are on the decline as more and more software is made available in digital download format.  You will still need one for OS installations and backing up your media.  The Asus 24x DVD-RW drive is a mainstay in all of my builds.


Corsair CX500 Power SupplyPSU – Corsair Builder Series CX500 500W 80 PLUS  Bronze Power Supply

The Corsair CX500 80 Plus Bronze Power supply is just the right size for our budget AMD gaming PC. It will allow us to overclock the processor and GPU with plenty of juice (38A on a single 12V rail) left over.  The build quality is typical Corsair and the 80 Plus Bronze rating will help with the power bill. A very quiet power supply at a great price.



CPUAMD FX-6300 3.5 Ghz Black Edition $     120.00
CPU COOLERN/A $               -
MOTHERBOARDGIGABYTE GA-970A-D3 AM3+ AMD 970 ATX AMD Motherboard $        75.00
MEMORYKingston Technology HyperX 8 GB (2×4 GB) 1600 MHz DDR3 Dual Channel Kit $        72.00
GPUMSI Radeon HD 7790 OC 1GB GDDR5 $     125.00
CASECorsair Carbide Series 200R Compact ATX Case $        60.00
HARD DRIVESeagate Barracuda 1 TB HDD SATA 6 Gb/s NCQ 64MB Cache Hard Drive $        68.00
OPTICAL DRIVEAsus 24xDVD-RW Serial ATA Internal OEM Drive $        22.00
PSUCorsair Builder Series CX500 500W 80 PLUS POWER SUPPLY $        50.00
TOTAL $     592.00

Check the links for latest pricing as they can fluctuate daily


The build above is what I would choose if I were to build an AMD Gaming PC with a $500-$600 budget. Check back monthly for updates to this build as new hardware, technologies, and prices change.

Check out the other gaming PC builds for different budgets on TechNutz.com:

So what do you think of this build?


 Posted by on June 3, 2013  Add comments

  30 Responses to “AMD Gaming PC Build July 2013 | Budget Performance”

  1. Hey Gary I really like this build. Lets say tho I wanted to upgrade the CPU to an amd fx-6300 and buy a 2gb version of the gpu instead of this one, would all these components still work together? Also with the different processor would overclocking still be possible with this power supply and would I need another cooler for the CPU? Thank you.

    • Hello Alejo, you should have no troubles going with that CPU and video card using the listed 500 watt power supply. If you want to overclock I do recommend going with a Hyper 212+ cooler for another $25 to make sure you keep the processor cool. My July build update was going to include the FX-6300 so you beat me to it! If you have any other questions let me know. Thanks! Gary

  2. i forgot to mention the $1000 bds does not include the video card you will recommended

  3. so Gary… you personally would you go for the budget intel or amd and why ?

    • AMD: I would chose the AMD build for the better upgrade path and multi-core. The Intel build has a better graphics card but I also do a lot of video encoding for my media collection. I personally have an AMD system running a GIGABYTE GA-990FXA-UD3 and a Phenom II X4 960T unlocked to 6 cores and overclocked from 3Ghz to 4Ghz. My next upgrade will be an FX-3850 and that’s what I love about the AM3+ socket. It is going to be used for quite some time into the future.

  4. if I wanted to run this with an SSD and a GTX760, would the combo still be ideal or would that require some other upgrades?

    • Hello Paul,

      It would be just fine and much more powerful!


      • Thanks Gary, I have now also discovered the slightly more expensive FX 8350, I was going to go up slightly on the power supply to a 600 watt. Is the Gigabyte GA 970 still the best option? I would like to go SLI if possible in a couple years to keep it current.

        Sorry for all the questions, I am new to this, as I’m sure you can tell!

  5. lol was given some ran and a chip from a pal of mine the Amd 940 black edition and yeah i know its old but i would still like to put it up to run some test what board would you suggest ?

    • Sorry for such a late response Richard! That is a great chip btw! I would use the board listed in the article. If you are looking at saving more money and losing some features I could take a look around and recommend something else. Let me know!

  6. I was wondering can this build support putting 2 GPUs on it?

  7. Sorry for the delayed response Kyle. The spam filter caught your comment due to the link (which reminds me that I need to fix that). That is an awesome looking board for the money! I would definitely upgrade if you have the extra cash. It would be well worth it.

  8. Hi, if you were to do crossfire, what PSU would you recommend?

  9. nice budget build! planning to set-up one…
    i need help… :D

    will this build be ok if i get an HD7870?

    will the HD7870 be bottlenecked by the FX6300?

    or should i get an amd FX8320?

    i see that the HD7870 utilizes PCI-e 3.0, will it be perfect for the motherboard above or the Gigabyte GA-970A-DS3P?

    • You should be fine with the FX-6300 but if you have the extra cash in your budget I would go ahead and get the FX-8320. Either motherboard would be fine but I like new Gigabyte GA-970A-DS3P. Haven’t used it in a build yet but it looks solid. AMD chipsets currently don’t support PCIe 3.0 but even running dual 7870’s you would not see much benefit from PCIe 3.0.