PC Builds

The Best Gaming PC Build Under $1500 in 2021

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With a budget of $1,500 you can build a nice gaming machine that will perfectly run all the latest games at 1440P resolution without any performance hiccups. In the following guide we’ll show you which components you have to buy in order to build this kind of gaming rig and enjoy all the benefits it provides.

Read also: The Best Gaming PC Build Under $1300

Powered by the mighty Intel Core i5-11600K desktop processor, our $1,500 PC build is able to crunch all the data you throw at it, so you shouldn’t have to worry about experiencing any system bottlenecks or performance drops. Being designed for 1440p gaming in mind, our $1,500 PC features a GeForce RTX 2060 graphics card which is able to deliver astonishing performance at 1080p resolution, and strong performance at QHD resolution. With that being said, it is also necessary to mention that this build comes with full support for ray-tracing rendering, meaning you’ll be able to experience stunning visuals with the help of the included NVIDIA graphics card.

Given how prices of PC components have sky-rocketed this year, we’ve decided to not include any mechanical drives in our $1,500 PC build for 2021, but instead go with a one 1TB PCIe drive to save as much money as possible on other components. Thanks to that, we’ve managed to allocate some of our unspent budget on 16GB DDR4-3200 RAM, as well as on fantastic Cryorig H7 cooler to keep our power-hungry i5-11600K cool and quiet. So, with the latter being said, let’s not waste words any further and take a look at our PC build.

PC Build Components List

ComponentSelection
ProcessorIntel Core i5-11600K 6-Core, 4.9 GHz Processor
CoolerCryorig H7
MotherboardASUS Prime B560-PLUS, ATX
MemoryCorsair Vengeance LPX 16GB (2x8GB) DDR4 3200 MHz Kit
Graphics CardMSI GeForce RTX 2060 Ventus GP Edition
Solid State DriveKingston A2000 1TB M.2 NVMe SSD
Power SupplyEVGA SuperNova 650 G5 80+ Gold Certified
CaseThermaltake V250 Mid-Tower Case
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Please note that prices of all listed PC components are subject to change without notice and are not guaranteed. At the time of writing this guide the total sum of all listed components was around $1,500. Depending on the market demand the total cost of our PC build may increase or decrease.

$1,500 PC Build Gaming Performance

i5-11600K + RTX 20601080P @ Ultra
Cyberpunk 2077 (RTX Off, DLSS Quality)70 FPS
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (2019)125 FPS
Fortnite190 FPS
Grand Theft Auto V145 FPS
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds117 FPS
Resident Evil Village62 FPS

As you can see from our benchmark table above, our $1,500 PC build is able to deliver killer performance at 1080p resolution, meaning it’s also perfectly suited for enjoyable 1440p gaming on ultra settings. In competitive first-person shooters, such as Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and PUBG, our gaming rig can deliver more than 120 FPS on average at 1080p resolution, and up to 90 FPS on average at 1440p resolution. In less demanding titles, such as Fortnite and GTA V, you can expect very good rendering performance even at 4K resolution. Speaking of ray-tracing performance, our PC build is capable of delivering fairly satisfactory results even with that option enabled, but don’t expect hitting the 60 FPS mark without lowering some graphics settings to medium or low.

If you are interested in specific details of each individual component of our $1,500 PC build, then keep reading further.

PC BUILD DETAILS

Processor: Intel Core i5-11600K

Cores/Threads: 6C/12T | Base Clock: 3.9 GHz | Boost Clock: 4.9 GHz | TDP: 125 W | PassMark Score: 20.022

The Intel Core i5-11600K desktop processor is amazing. This CPU has better hyper-threading capabilities, more flexible overclocking, and a slightly quicker boost clock of 4.9 GHz when compared to its predecessor, the Core i5-10600K. The fact that it has a rather high TDP of 125 W, however, is one of its significant drawbacks. This is why, if you’re going to buy one, we strongly advise you to get an aftermarket cooler.

In gaming, the Core i5-11600K comfortably surpasses the AMD Ryzen 5 3600, and in some cases, even the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X, which is a remarkable achievement for a mid-range CPU. Overall, the Core i5-11600K is one of the best Intel processors we’ve seen in recent years, as it provides excellent performance at a reasonable price.


Cooler: Cryorig H7

Supported Sockets: 115X, 1200; FM1, FM2(+), AM2(+), AM3(+), AM4 | Dimensions: 98 x 123 x 145 mm | Noise Level: 25 dBA | Fans: 1 x 120 mm | Max. Fan Speed: 1.600 RPM

Since Intel Core i5-11600K doesn’t ship with included thermal solution, buying an aftermarket cooler for this CPU is a must in order to keep it as cool as possible and extend its lifespan. The Cryorig H7 is a perfect match for Core i5-11600K, as this air cooler features premium quality materials, low noise levels, and a huge 120 mm fan than ensures maximum airflow and heat dissipation within the computer case.

Being produced by a top-tier manufacturer, it is no wonder the Cryorig H7 is very popular in PC DIY community. This CPU cooler is a good investment, as it will keep your CPU cool and quiet for years to come, thanks to its exceptional performance and build quality, as well as its compact size.


Motherboard: ASUS Prime B560-PLUS

Form Factor: ATX | Socket: LGA 1200 | Chipset: AMD B560 | Memory Support: 4 x DDR4-4600 (O.C.) | Features: 1 x PCIe 4.0 x16, 1 x PCIe 3.0 x16, 2 x PCIe 3.0 x1, 6 x SATA3, 2 x M.2

The ASUS Prime B560-PLUS is a well-made and affordable mid-range motherboard for the 11th Gen Intel Core CPUs. It features two PCIe x16 slots, meaning it supports multi-GPU configurations, and it features enhanced VRM and PCH thermal solutions for better cooling. This motherboard also supports memory overclocking, and it even comes with a Thunderbolt 4 header.

Although it lacks RGB lighting, and an integrated Wi-Fi module, this motherboard has all the necessary features for building a high-end gaming rig. Boasting a robust power design, comprehensive cooling solutions and intelligent tuning options, the B560-PLUS is capable of providing daily users and DIY PC builders a range of performance tuning options which allow them to maximize theirs’s system performance, and enhance theirs gaming experience.


Memory: Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB (2x8GB) DDR4 3200 MHz Kit

Speed: DDR4 3200 MHz | Stock Latency: 16-18-18-36 | Operating Voltage: 1.35V | Capacity: 2 x 8GB

Corsair is widely known as a producer of high-quality memory sticks. The Vengeance LPX DDR4 memory kit is no exception in this regard, as these sticks can boast with CAS 16 latency, and premium PCB components. Thanks to the pre-installed aluminum heatspreader, these sticks also run quite cool, and are able to provide better overclocking headroom then DDR4 memory sticks from some other manufacturers.

The Vengeance LPX sticks also feature XMP 2.0 support, meaning you can easily overclock them without too much hassle. Although they don’t feature any extra gimmicks, such as RGB lighting, these memory sticks are able perform their job really well, and deliver where it matters the most – in performance.


Graphics Card: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060

Base Clock: 1365 MHz | Memory: 6GB GDDR6 | Power Connectors: 1 x 8-pin | TDP: 160 W | Outputs: 3 x DP, 1 x HDMI

The NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 is a performance-segment GPU that can deliver fantastic framerates on 1080p and 1440p high refresh rate monitors, and can also provide stunning ray-traced visuals. With that kind of performance it’s no wonder that this GPU is the corner stone of our $1,500 PC build, consuming almost 50% of our total budget.

There are a lot of nice AIB models of the GeForce 2060 to select from, but we went with the MSI Ventus GP Edition because of its sleek look, good thermal performance, and affordable pricing. Of course, pricing of this card could be better, but given how expensive graphics cards have become, the RTX 2060 is currently one of the most affordable GPUs with support for ray-tracing.


Solid State Drive: Kingston A2000 1TB M.2 NVMe SSD

Capacity: 1 TB | Interface: M.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 | Max. Read Speed: Up to 2200 MB/s | Max. Write Speed: Up to 2000 MB/s

Nowadays games and applications have become pretty big in terms of space they occupy on hard drives. However, in order to reduce loading times and make your user experience as smooth as possible, you’ll need something faster than the ordinary 3.5-inch HDD. That’s why our $,1500 PC build comes with this ultra-fast Kingston A2000 M.2 NVMe SSD that can boast with read/write speeds of up to 2,200/2,000 MB/s, respectively.

Delivering 3x the performance of a SATA SSD, the Kingston A2000 is able to provide super-quick loading times, and much lower power consumption and heat production. With storage capacity of 1TB, the Kingston A2000 offers enough space to accommodate multiple PC games, an operating system, and variety of applications that you prefer to use frequently.


Power Supply: EVGA SuperNOVA 650 G5 80+ Gold

Form Factor: ATX | Capacity: 650 W | Efficiency rating: 80 PLUS Gold Certified | Modularity: Modular

EVGA is known for making high-quality power supply units for personal computers. The SuperNOVA 650 G5 is the latest example of EVGA’s fine engineering, as this PSU holds a 80 PLUS Gold certification that guarantees 92% efficiency at 100% operating loads. This means that less energy gets wasted during power conversion, which is great for lowering your electricity bills.

Being a highly reliable PSU, the SuperNova 650 G5 is also well-suited for mild overclocking operations, which is great if you plan to overclock your RAM or GPU someday. Another great thing about this PSU is that it’s fully modular, meaning you can arrange power cables according to your preferences and reduce clutter in your PC case.


Case: Thermaltake V250 TG ARGB Mid-Tower Chassis

Form Factor: Mid Tower | Motherboard Support: ATX, Micro-ATX, Mini-ITX | Dimensions: 430 × 217 × 477 mm | Radiator Support: Up to 1 x 360 mm | I/O Ports: USB 3.0 x 1, USB 2.0 x 2, HD Audio x 1 | Drive Bays: 2 x 3.5″, 2+2 x 2.5″

The Thermaltake V250 TG ARGB is a feature-rich mid-tower PC case. Although it can’t boast with stunning aesthetics, “under the hood” this is a very spacious PC case. Designed primarily for gamers in mind, this case is very easy to assemble, and provides a variety of features for building a powerful and tidy gaming machine. The Thermaltake V250 can house up to six 120 mm fans, or up to three liquid cooling radiators. It also features enough space for four 2.5″ SSDs, or two 2.5″ SSDs and two 3.5″ HDDs.

The Thermaltake V250 can also accommodate GPUs measuring up to 320 mm in length. On its front panel you’ll find one USB 3.0 port, and two USB 2.0 ports, as well as one HD Audio port. The best thing about this PC case is that it comes with three pre-installed 120 mm ARGB front fans, which many gamers and enthusiasts will simply adore. Last but not least, it’s fully compatible with ASUS Aura Sync, Gigabyte RGB Fusion 2.0, and MSI Mystic Light systems, which is a nice addition.

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