This post recommends the best gaming PC you can build for under $800. If you’re looking to buy a pre-made PC to save on all the hassle that comes with building your own, we recommend the CYBERPOWERPC Gamer Xtreme VR GXiVR8500A. At the center of this build you find a powerful processor in the shape of Intel's I5 9400F, which when paired with the GTX 1660 TI gives you all the power you need to create a brilliant, immersive gaming experience.
PC gaming is one of those things you can buy into cheaply, however, to fully experience gaming as it was intended you're going to need to purchase hardware components which fall under the mid-high price bracket. Our best $800 gaming PC strikes the higher end of the “sweet spot” between price and performance. This build is way past being a console killer whilst remaining sub-$1000 making it fantastic value for money. Even if you are starting to edge into the premium build price range.
So, what exactly should you expect from an $800 build? Well to keep it simple, our goal is to give you the complete PC gaming experience with room to grow further down the line.
Specifically, you should expect:
Top-notch Performance. This machine performs well above current consoles, leaving the likes of the PS4 Pro and Xbox One X in its wake. Further to this, virtual reality and 1440p should both be achievable with pleasant FPS results across the board.
Great aesthetics. For $800 in today's market you expect to build a PC which is both high in performance and superb aesthetically. That's why we chose a case that makes use of a fantastic viewing window to show off the hardware components and their RGB lighting.
Upgradeability. While $800 will last a long time with the right components, this machine is still made to be very upgrade-able. We have designed the $800 build with great performance and future gaming tech in mind, meaning you won't have to worry about upgrading any hardware components for years to come. Chances are, you could probably go through a GPU or two without ever needing to upgrade your CPU or motherboard thanks to the research we do prior to the builds.
How We Choose the PC Components
Our goal here at WePC is to use our expertise to ensure that you are getting the best value for your money when building a gaming rig.
How do we do this? Well, a lot of research for starters. We check what other professionals in the industry have to say, such as Linus Tech Tips, JayzTwoCents, and Tech Deals, about upcoming products and components. And obviously benchmarks, like the ones found on Tom’s Hardware.
Since prices change somewhat often, expect to see changes to our builds every few days.
The Best $800 Gaming PC Update:
Intel Core i5-9400F Six-Core Processor
The Intel Core i5 in this build will provide excellent gaming performance and shouldn’t bottleneck any potential GPU upgrades you have in mind further down the road.
Gigabyte GeForce GTX 1660TI Windforce Gaming OC 6G Graphics Card
1080p killer, 1440p/VR powerhouse. That’s really all there is to say here.
Patriot Elite VIPER 4 16GB Series 3000MHz
With a full 16GB of RAM, multitasking and gaming shouldn’t be any problem whatsoever for this powerful PC build.
Corsair CX 650W 80+ Bronze-Certified Semi-Modular Power Supply
A strong semi-modular power supply from Corsair.
MSI Z390-A PRO ATX LGA1151 Motherboard
An entry-level motherboard for Intel’s 9th generation CPU series.
Cougar MX330 Mid Tower Case
The Cougar MX330 is a fantastic, budget PC case with plenty of room for expansion and cooling.
Below is a more detailed explanation on why we've chosen each component and some noteworthy tips on what they can and can't do.
The i5-9400F doesn’t just provide fantastic gaming performance, we also noticed benchmarks were surprisingly good across the board for what is considered a budget CPU. With Intel’s 9th gen technology there’s no need to worry about bottlenecking any potential graphics card upgrade you’re thinking about pairing this with in future as the 9400F has enough power to accommodate the middle-top bracket GPU’s comfortably. You’ll also be able to get much higher framerates in CPU-dependent games, such as CS:GO, thanks to the 6 cores it’s been developed with. MORE: Best CPUs for Gaming
The GTX 1660TI is a card many will know and for good reason, it’s one of the best cards available for its price range and we’ve managed to squeeze it into the $800 build by prioritizing it over other areas which we will touch upon later. It beats out it’s close rival, the RTX 580, by 15-20% in the benchmark tests whilst still remaining competitive in pricing making it fantastic value for money. You can easily churn out 4k games at 40fps if you tweak the graphics just right, however the 1660TI is more at home on lower resolutions where you can cruise past 100FPS respectively. Overall we consider the 1660TI to be true value for money and gets the spot in our $800 rig
This Patriot Viper 16GB 3000Mhz RAM kit comes at a higher clock speed than your typical DDR4 RAM, and should provide all the memory you need for most gaming and multitasking scenarios. The marginal speed boost won’t do too much to add to your gaming experience, but the difference is there and worth the money spent.
Originally we suggested a Samsung 860 Evo SSD, however we’ve tested several cheaper alternatives and found performance to be on par with the more expensive Samsung SSDs which gives us more budget for the GPU. The Kingston A400 provides lightning fast loading which will also help with those heavy game loading times. Overall, having an SSD paired with a 2TBB HDD makes this the perfect couple.
HD is somewhat of a dieing breed now that SSD has become more affordable, however it still has a huge role to play in modern day rigs whilst bigger capacity SSD’s are still massively expensive. The good thing about HD’s is as long as you’re buying from a trusted brand such as Seagate or Hitachi and are getting good price-per-gigabyte, you really don’t need to spend too much time contemplating your options. Seagate are a great brand which provide fantastic efficient storage at very affordable prices. We’ve gone for the 2TB option for this $800 build which is more than enough to store a whole list of games and other media’s you may have on your system. Our advice is to use this additional storage space to store your single-player games, movies, media, and everything you aren’t playing on a super-regular basis whilst utilizing the SSD for your primary eSports titles and windows.
Due to rising prices, we weren’t able to fit a modular PSU in our cheaper builds despite having been able to do so last year. This is a shame because a modular PSU is one of the best improvements that you can make for your building experience, however in this price range, we’re finally able to amend that with Corsair’s semi-modular PSU which has a hold host of benefits. Aside from the whole “modular” deal, this PSU also comes from Corsair. While many may focus on Corsair for their stellar keyboards, their PSUs are also known to be among the best in the industry, so we’re happy to recommend them here.
To be honest, this is an entry-level motherboard. That being said, this shouldn’t impact your gaming experience in any reasonable way… in fact, it supports overclocking even though the CPU we’re pairing this with can’t be overclocked. The great thing about having a motherboard with this ability is your computer instantly becomes future proof, meaning if you wanted to OC a CPU in the future you won’t have to go through the rigmarole of building an entire new rig. However, if you’re serious about overclocking we recommend taking a look at one of our higher-end builds. While this may be an entry-level motherboard, it’s still manufactured by MSI, one of the most trusted manufacturers in the industry. For that reason, we’re still confident recommending this motherboard in our $800 PC build.
The Cougar MX330 is an entry level mid tower PC case which provides fantastic options for upgrading, with room for a 240mm radiator and 5 case fans. The Cougar MX330 also provides USB 3.0 & 2.0 ports alongside the headphone ports on the front I/O as well as a viewing window. Overall, as a budget option, the Cougar MX330 ticks all the boxes.
Why is this the Best $800 Gaming PC?
We regularly check custom PC builders latest builds as well as keeping up with the latest PC hardware announcements to help ensure we’re ahead of the curve when choosing sensible and practical hardware parts. Some may make ridiculous sacrifices to things like CPU power and storage space just to stuff a high-end graphics card into their system even though its performance is going to be throttled; we do our best to avoid this at WePC by putting in hours of research.
All of our builds are thoroughly researched to ensure that bottlenecks aren’t a concern, ensuring each build is a balanced gaming PC with reliable hardware that's going to last for years to come. Even if you aren't planning on upgrading anytime soon. With the i5 we’ve included in this build alongside the GTX 1660 we’re confident that you’ll have great gaming experiences at 1080p and 1440p well into the future.
What games can this PC run?
In this section, we’re going to tell you how this game should be able to run your favorite games.
- Fortnite - At 1080p, you should be able to easily max out this game at 60 FPS or higher. 1440p should still be playable at 60 FPS, but you may need to turn down a few settings.
- PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds - 1080p60 at high-to-max settings should be achievable, but 1440p may require some tuning down to medium or low settings.
- Monster Hunter: World - MHW is quite intensive, but 1080p60 shouldn’t be a problem for this build at high settings. 1440p60 will be much harder to achieve, though, and may require some settings turned down.
- League of Legends - League of Legends is a fairly lightweight eSports title, so 1440p60 and 1080p144 should both be achievable at high settings.
- Dota 2 - Same as above.
- Overwatch - At 1440p and Ultra settings, Overwatch should be playable at 60 FPS. This makes 1080p an easy sweep as well.
- Rainbow Six: Siege - At 1440p and high settings, Siege should be playable at 60-70 FPS.
- Warframe - Warframe should be playable at 1440p60 on high settings and 1080p144 on high settings- it’s quite well-optimized.
- Grand Theft Auto V - GTA V should be playable at 1440p60 with medium-high settings and high-max settings at 1080p.
- Team Fortress 2 - TF2 is primarily CPU-dependent, so you shouldn’t encounter any issues at 1440p here. If you want to push your frames higher, though, you’ll want to go down to 1080p and turn down some settings.
Similar Prebuilt Gaming PC Under $800
We may have come up with the best $800 gaming PC, but not everyone has the time, luxury, or even the patience to build their own PC.
Note: check out the top 12 custom PC builders in our fantastic guide right here.
Below we have included the 3 best prebuilt gaming PCs for around $800. If you want to read more about them, then you can check out the product guide.
Upgrade Path for this Build
While this machine boasts excellent performance and fantastic value for money, there's still plenty that can be changed to make it better from the get-go or in the future.
Note: Of course, these upgrades will increase the price.
While the aftermarket cooler that we have suggested above is more than adequate at keeping your rig cool, it can still be considered entry-level, so it’s always worth getting a better cooler to ensure you have the capacity to open up more opportunities and upgrade further down the line. The Cryorig H7 may not be the best of the best but should do fine to ensure that your locked CPU is provided with all the cooling it needs. Not to mention that this also works fine if you wish to upgrade your CPU to an unlocked CPU like the i5-9600k, which, will be covered next.
This unlocked version of Intel’s i5 9th gen processor gives you not just plenty of processing power, with clock speeds of 3.70GHz at stock, but also has the ability to be easily overclocked past 4.6Ghz. Essentially, it’s a much better CPU than the one we have in this build with much more ability as well. If you wish to upgrade your gaming experience a tad more and not have to spend a great deal doing so this is a fantastic option. However if you’re looking to push the boat out and your budget is flexible we would highly recommend the I7-9700k as benchmarks results are significantly higher than what is currently in the $800 build. BE AWARE: If you’re going to spend the extra money on this and overclocking is one of your main agenda’s YOU ARE going to require some additional cooling, we touch on this below.
We’ve opted for the MSI z390 Gaming Pro as the natural upgrade path for the $800 build for a few reasons. Firstly it’s a fantastic looking card which has been designed specifically with gamer’s in mind, it comes equipped with a tonne of RGB which when paired with the Fractal Design case looks absolutely fantastic. However it’s not just aesthetics you’re paying for, it has massive ability to overclock Intel’s 9th gen CPU’s way past what is recommended and has all the future proofing you’re going to need for years to come. All this for a mere $100 more makes this motherboard one of our top upgrade recommendations.
Naturally the Ti is the next step up if your budget allows and we’ve selected GIGABYTE’s iteration. The Ti comes equipped with GIGABYTES windforce 3x cooling system which is both quiet and super efficient making it great for overclocking if that’s your thing. However it’s base clock speed is more than sufficient at pushing out well over 100FPS on a number of different games. It’s fairly large but with the case we’ve recommended above you’ll be happy to know it’ll fit in nicely and you wont need to upgrade your PSU just yet. Overall a great GPU which will give you a decent performance boost for around $70 more.
OS Options and Recommended Peripherals
Most peripherals should be taken care of, especially if you’re dropping $800 on a PC. Still, we wanted to give a few recommendations to accompany this system.
NOTE: These will raise the price of the build!
For a gaming PC, the only real option for an operating system is Windows. While there has been some significant strides in recent years for Linux and Mac support for games, the options are nowhere near what is offered on Windows.
Previous licenses for Windows can be transferred to new machines, but you may need actually get in contact with Microsoft complete the transfer process. However, if you still need to obtain a USB copy of Windows 10, you can do so from Amazon. Alternatively, you can still get Windows 10 on DVD if you prefer.
Mouse and Keyboard
Your mouse and keyboard are vital aspects of your gaming setup. These are the tools you will go into battle with, and you haven’t already got some, we have some suggestions for you.
Razer DeathAdder Elite Gaming Mouse
To get you started on the right path we recommend the Razer Deathadder Elite mouse. This mouse is insanely good value and for that price, you will be getting one of the best shapes on offer for gaming. This ergonomic serpent has more than enough DPI for anyone and boasts a seriously good optical sensor from PixArt with switches to boot. If you would prefer to cut the cord and go wireless then take a look at some of our wireless recommendations here. MORE: Best Gaming Mice
CORSAIR K68 RGB Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
For the keyboard, we recommend the Corsair K68 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard. This keyboard offers fully-customisable RGB like higher-end keyboards, and as you would expect form corsair this board offers value and build quality for its price. this mechanical board boast really fast Red Cherry MX switches giving you quicker response times in-game! If you’d like some alternative picks, check out these.
SteelSeries QcK Gaming Surface
The Steelseries Qck gaming surface is what’s known as a ‘desktop pad’ thanks to its XL size and is largely considered to be one of the best and most comfortable pad’s available in today’s market. The QcK has been specifically designed with gamer’s in mind and the tightly woven fabric has been optimised for control and speed. A sleek design which will suit any desk makes it the perfect mouse pad for gamers. MORE: Best mousepads of 2019
Razer Gaming Bungee V2
The Razer Gaming Bungee V2 is a solid bungee from Razer, It eliminates drag from your mouse cable which enhances your gaming experience. If you’re looking to create that wireless feeling from your wired mouse then consider this excellent quality bungee, it’s worth the investment. MORE: Best Gaming Bungee’s
We’re going to offer two monitors here: a 1440p monitor running at 60 Hz, and a 1080p monitor running at 144 Hz. The former will provide superior size and image quality, while the latter will provide a smoother, more responsive experience for supported multiplayer games, like Warframe or Overwatch.
ASUS VG278Q 27"
This reasonably priced monitor pick is known as the ASUS VG278Q Gaming Monitor and is perfect for gamers looking to better their current 60Hz monitor or anyone looking for a fresh monitor to accompany their new build. This pick is our top gaming monitor for under $300 and it has everything you would want from a high-end gaming monitor. Overall superb value for a monitor of this quality. MORE: For a more premium recommendation see here.
Here are our picks for sound in this PC build.
Mackie CR Series 3" Creative Reference Multimedia Monitors
Sennheiser Gaming One Headset
The Sennheiser One Gaming Headset due to its magnificent build quality and great sound output is one of the best gaming headsets around. The stellar build quality that comes from Sennheiser in addition with the noise-canceling microphone ensures peak performance that will never let you down in those crucial moments. MORE: Best Gaming Headsets
We’ve opted for the Audio-Technica M30x headphones as they have great sound output and build quality to match. They don’t look too bad either, great pick!
Blue Yeti USB Microphone
Record and stream with the excellent sound quality from the Blue Yeti, the ultimate USB Microphone. The Yeti USB mic is ideal for podcasting, streaming on Twitch, content creation and music. This driverless microphone is good to go straight out of the box! For a more budget option consider the Antlion Audio attachable boom microphone. MORE: Best Gaming Microphone
High-bandwidth and low-latency applications need ethernet cables to perform at their best, so go ahead and buy an ethernet cable. Wi-Fi can cause your performance, both in-game and on your network, to suffer.
ASUS PCE-AC56 PCI Wireless Express Adapter
If you insist on using Wi-Fi, you should, at least, go with the Asus AC56 PCI Adapter. It supports all the latest Wi-Fi standards, has good reviews, and comes at a great price.
Invest In Antistatic Equipment
Buy an anti-static wristband and/or anti-static mat. This will protect your components from static discharge, which is an extraordinarily unfortunate and unlucky way to lose your brand-new hardware, albeit statistically unlikely. If you want to be sure, though, you should be using an anti-static wristband, and you can click here to read a guide.
Watch Building Guides
Building a PC might seem intimidating at first, but in truth, it’s not all that difficult. The embedded video above is one of our favorite build guides out there, presented by our friends at Tek Syndicate.
Install OS Via USB
We highly recommend that you install your OS via USB. To do this with Windows, download and run the Windows 10 Media Creation Tool.
In either of these cases, make sure you have at least a 4GB USB stick at your disposal for the creation of installation media.
So there you have it, that's everything you need to know if you want to build the best $800 gaming PC in 2019! What you're effectively building is a machine which will have the ability to handle the most demanding game titles with ease, whilst being extremely versatile in it's compatibility and upgrade potential. Further to this you're going to be able to push most games into 4K whilst still maintaining gameable FPS. Even upgraded consoles like the PS4 Pro and Xbox One X won’t be able to hold a candle to this build in terms of resolution, framerate, or graphical fidelity.
The system is easily set up to allow for plenty of upgrade options as well. Whether you want to drop in an additional 8GB of RAM, or upgrade the GPU (which you won’t have to do for awhile), this build makes upgrades a breeze for years to come.
How’d you find our build? Are you having troubles or thoughts of sacrificing some parts but don’t know which?
Reach out to us! Comment below and let us help you out directly.