Build A Better-Than-Xbox-One/PS4 PC For £500

Well, don’t take that entirely literally. I’m just writing that to get your attention and/or I can’t think of a more accurate way to do it within the character limit. Obviously you can’t build your own Xbox One or PlayStation 4 – they use some custom hardware not available to PC-builders to do their next-generation thing, they’re running bespoke operating systems (and all the horror-DRM that goes with it) and contain it all with in a comparatively small black monolith that sits underneath your TV. Additionally, console games can be made to specific hardware requirements, which can entail a far great degree of optimisation than trying to target a hundred thousand million different PC configs. No matter what the console generation, the PC comparison can never be an exact one. What you can do, though, is build yourself a PC that has a little more grunt under the hood than these apparent future-machines, for pretty much the same amount of money.

To be honest, while hitting the £420 price of an Xbone is eminently possible, I’d recommend you spend just a little more on a games PC than that – it’ll last you longer, there’s more scope for upgrading later, games will look fancier and you won’t have to spend a week trawling price comparison sites. Either way, the idea that a beefy games PC costs thousands of dollars/pounds is an outdated and wildly inaccurate one.

We’re going to struggle to match the PS4’s relatively sensible £350, I think, but the Xbox One’s ludicrous £420 is another matter. Also, an off-the-shelf PC for that money won’t quite be up to scratch – really, you’ll need to be willing to spend £600 minimum. I’m discounting that side of things entirely as I’ve always built my own systems, but Jim’s going to make a cameo at the end of this post with some recommendations on that front. Meanwhile, if you (or a conscripted friend/relative) can scratch build or upgrade an existing system you’re laughing.

To be honest, the major complications in price-matching the new consoles is case, power supply, hard drive and operating system – the core components of processor, motherboard, graphics card and memory come in at the right price. If you do have anything you can recycle, including an existent copy of Windows, it’s going to help. Let’s not factor in a monitor though, unless you’ve spotted somewhere that gives you a free HDTV when you buy an Xbox One or PlayStation 4.

Let’s start with CPU. As resident hardware sage Jeremy rightfully sneered recently, Intel’s new Haswell processors are a pretty pitiful step forwards from their previous generation of chips on the desktop (the idea is they’ll be more worthwhile in laptops, due to their power-saving aptitude and improved integrated graphics). However, if you’re building your own PC right now, you might as well get one – it’s your best bet in terms of future proofing, as it controversially introduces the new socket LGA 1150, which will hopefully stick around for a couple more processor generations – so you can upgrade to something meatier down the line. I’m going to recommend the 3Ghz, quad core Haswell Core i5-4430, but to be honest that’s a much stronger chip than the eight-core AMD Jaguar in the Xbox One and PS4.

If you’re wondering how it could be eight cores good, four cores better, either read this or let me pass you over to Jeremy. “The eight core AMD Jaguar CPU, even if you had all eight cores available for playing games, would still be roughly half as fast as a current quad-core Intel CPU. the only slight issue is threading, but I would say the absolute best case scenario is that the console CPU will be half the performance of an Intel quad.”

The Core i5-4430 goes for £140 in the UK (example), or even a bit less if you want to put the hours into shopping around and gambling on lesser-known etailers. That needs to be paired up with an LGA 1150 motherboard, the cheapest of which is around £50 – such as this MSI one. Shop around, maybe consider ebay sellers, and you could well get down to £40-odd. You’ll need to spend more if you want more ports or, heaven forfend, multiple graphics card slots, but if you’re not a power user this’ll do you just fine. It is possible that the cheapest motherboards will prove not up to muster when later generations of CPU wheel around, so it may be wiser to spend a little more there – it’s the wheel of fortune either way.

You’ll need to plonk 8GB of DDR3, 1600Mhz RAM into there – same quantity as on console, although the PS4 has the much faster GDDR5 type. No, you don’t need any more than that – games won’t use itThe jury’s a little out on what that may mean in practice – on paper it certainly beats any PC, but as it’s shared memory for both CPU and GPU it’s more complicated than that. Jeremy again: ” GDDR5 has lots of latency vs DDR3 for a CPU, so it’s bandwidth vs latency. Who the hell knows! To be honest, current CPUs (more powerful than the PS4’s) aren’t bandwidth limited, so I doubt the PS4 will gain much in CPU terms from all that bandwidth.” The Xbone, at least, is doing the DDR3 thing too, so there’s nothing to worry about there. 8GB of DDR3 1600 will set you back £50 (again, legwork and/or secondhand will result in a bit cheaper if you can be bothered), bringing our running total to £245.

Now for the big, expensive part. While they’re both touting AMD-ATI graphics processors, neither the Xbone or the PS4 use an exact match for an existing PC graphics card. However, the best of the pair, Sony’s effort, with its 1152 shaders, isn’t far off an AMD-ATI Radeon 7870 with 1280. If you’d prefer join Team Green, the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 Ti has 1344, but it’s also a little pricier. The 7870 goes for about £170 (for instance) – again, careful searching might well knock up to £20 off that – and our total thus becomes £410: ten pounds less than an unquestionably lesser Xbox One, and with the infinitely greater flexibility of a PC. This is not a sub-par system, either: it’s one that will chew through almost anything at 1080p on high settings.

Noticeably absent still is a hard drive. Now, you can pick up a second hand £160 for a tenner all over eBay, and we’re still at £420, but if you don’t have one already now really is the time to grab yourself an SSD. With the arguable exception of a new graphics card, switching from olde worlde platter-based drives to an SSD is the single most effective PC upgrade there is. Unfortunately stretching to a 256GB drive, let alone higher, takes us too far above our budget, but Samsung’s reliably tasty 128GB 840 SSD can be had for £73. There we are with a rather juicy new PC for £483.

Alternatively, if you do have an old hard sat around that you can use to keep non-speed-reliant files such as movies, music and even most games on, a fairly decent 64GB SSD, enough to give Windows and a few core apps an enormous boost, goes for £45. Really though, aim for 128GB – that way a few favourite games can benefit too.

Case, PSU and operating system remain unaccounted for, of course. Power supply’s easy – this £17 puppy is enough for this system, and eerily takes us to exactly £500. You can run all your components from inside a cardboard box if you’re not worried about burning your house down and/or the parts taking damage), but maybe you should just stump up another £25 for this case. It’s got all you need realistically, it looks quite nice, and it matches the monolithic aesthetics of both Xbone and PS4.

£525 and we’re done – without working particularly hard to find the absolute cheapest components, to be honest. I reckon you could manage it for £500 if you’re willing to put the hours in.

To be honest, I’m going to simply cut out operating system in this case. If you’re reading RPS, you have a PC already, and thus surely have a Windows key already. Unless you’re planning to run both PCs at once, you can easily talk Microsoft in letting you re-activate on the new PC. And, if we’re comparing to Xbone, Xbox Live subscription costs are going to rapidly rise above the £40 cost of a copy of Windows 7 or 8 (there’s no cast iron reason to upgrade to 8, which is generally a little more expensive; it’s a little quicker in some ways, but from experience of using it as my main OS for six months now, it won’t make a meaningful difference regardless of inevitable apologists’ claims).

If you’re for some reason dogged about price-matching an Xbone rather than going up to £500, again you’ll either have to re-use old parts or look for where you can save money in the other components. As mentioned, the Haswell i5 is much beefier than the consoles’ CPUs, so you could go lower there – perhaps finding an Ivy Bridge (the previous generation of Intel chips) i5 going cheap – second hand ones abound for sub-£100 – or holding out for the forthcoming lower-clocked Haswell i5s. Another option is a dual core i3, but you should really stick to an i5 if you can.

You could also drop the graphics card to a 7850, which at 1024 shaders is only a nose behind the PS4. You can find those for £125, though that’s the 1GB model which may limit you a little. Alternatively you could go to the GeForce 660 vanilla (i.e. no Ti suffix), which would save £15 (this one, for instance). In any case, compromising a little on both CPU and GPU will keep you sub-£500 for sure.

And there we have it. A pretty darn corking PC for £525 max, as low as £420 if you have parts to recycle, but more than likely we’re looking at around £500 with a bit of careful shopping and/or scrimping. Am I allowed to say ‘Xboned’ yet? No, you’re right, I am a 34-year-old man and I should be above such low humour by now.


Jim’s note: Lol, indeed. I’ve been building PCs for about eighteen years now, and I have long tired of people asking me to build for them, but I do understand the reticence to brave the issues that self-building might entail. As such I’ve regularly spec’d up builds for folks on various custom sites such as Chillblast, PCSpecialist, and Cyberpower (or their equivalents in other countries.) I checked out those sites in light of this article and I can report that they all offer reasonable custom-built systems, ready to use, for under £600. You aren’t going to get the value that you will building it yourself, of course, and as a rule of thumb you can expect to be paying about £100 more than you would for a self-build. However, they do come with warranties, and take some of the fear out of putting stuff together yourself. You can fit out out a similar PC to the one Alec outlined above, or go even lower than that, on any of these websites. Cyberpower currently offers the cheapest complete system I can see, for about £480, although it’s significantly lower specification than what is outlined here.


  1. Dethnell says:

    By Geforce 600 ti do you mean 660 Ti? If so the power supply you have quoted has one 6 pin PCI-E adapter for the graphics card where the 660 Ti needs two of them to function.

    • Jademalo says:

      All Nvidia GPUs come with Molex to 6/8 pin adapters depending on the card. You can run them off ancient PSUs if you wanted.

      • Sakkura says:

        Except putting a heavy load on molex connectors leads to unbalanced loads that may result in voltages going out of spec. Especially on ancient PSUs.

        • -Spooky- says:

          Agree. Don´t buy china no name PSU.

          • Snakejuice says:

            Indeed, it’s the most important part to not be cheap about. Everytime I’ve had stability problems it’s been the fault of a crappy/old PSU. Well, that or crappy SSDs (don’t buy Intel SSD!).

    • battles_atlas says:

      Speaking of PSUs, maybe things have changed in the last few years, but I’d never again buy a budget one. I’ve had two fail in the past. One went spectacularly with a bang, but the other was a much bigger problem – a lingering death that took the form of random components failing, and so was an absolute nightmare to pin down the cause of. Buy something branded by Corsair or the like and save yourself the heartache later on.

      • Koozer says:

        I came down here to say similar. I’ve had no end of trouble with cheap PSUs before I realised they were the problem. Get a decent one for £30 and never worry about mysterious cutouts and funny smells again.

      • Sakkura says:

        A budget PSU costs about £30 and can be just fine (Corsair CX series is a good example). A £17 PSU is a disaster waiting to happen. Those are the kinds of PSUs where you may see the manufacturer replacing an important coil with a lump of rock.

      • Dethnell says:

        Other side of the coin. Just spend near £100 on a XFX 750w psu and it has a dodgy fan that is hilariously annoying under load. In the process of being returned as we speak.

        So It’s not always the case that cheap power supplies are crap as the XFX fan problem is well known and they are by all accounts a quality brand.

        • Sakkura says:

          A dodgy fan is nowhere near as bad as what you would be risking with a £17 PSU. I’m talking things literally melting and/or smoking inside your PC.

          And a component can always fail. The risk is just way higher with the crappy no-namers, and they don’t have protections in place in case something does go wrong – which means the damage is likely to affect the rest of the system rather than just the PSU.

        • hatseflats says:

          The fact that something is expensive _never_ means something is better (even if it may be that higher priced product are better on average). However, when something is too cheap than it simply _cannot_ be any good. This is true for PSUs, and you really don’t want a malfunctioning PSU, as it’s generally difficult to pinpoint the problems caused by a PSU and, more importantly, it can destroy other components. I would never spent much money on a PSU, but I would never buy a budget one – just get a cheap bronze efficiency one, that usually works.

          • honky mcgee says:

            Generic platitudes aside, In my experience those who would advocate for a budget PSU don’t fully understand what it does or it’s importance to the overall system. But maybe you’re new to system building or haven’t yet experienced what happens when you decide to ‘budget’ in the wrong places.

        • vavaboom says:

          Was it a XFX XXX PRO series??

          I’ve just built a new machine and used a XFX XXX PRO 650w as XFX PSU’s had been reccomended across the net, and they apparently used SeaSonic parts which are apparently a very high standard. The PSU cost about £70 from Aria.

          However, it’s got the same fan ticking noise as you! it gets worse the longer the pc is on and the more load it is under, and i’m getting constant black screens and BSOD’s. It has to be this PSU, very disappointed in what was supposed to be a quality product but a few of these XFX’s have this problem. Others don’t seem to be causing system crashes but mine does! Going to get it checked out at a local pc repair shop before returning it.

      • dr4gz0r says:

        Came here to say exactly this: don’t save money on a budget power supply, it’s really asking for trouble and it might lead to more parts getting damaged.

        The cheapest Corsair are awesome, but be careful about the power draw, some of the better graphic cards need more than 430w.

        I understand the article wants to keep the price as low as possible, but a good PSU will last for years and it’s really a smart investment.

        • honky mcgee says:

          At the risk of pummeling an equestrian to a early demise, there are a few specifics I didn’t see mentioned that I thought might be worth my 2 cents.

          1. Knowing the difference between 12v & 5v rail and understanding which rail a given component runs off of. For instance, I purchased a “660 watt” generic power supply a few years ago (but it had cool graphics!) and it used to randomly re-boot under the most graphics intensive of games. It wasn’t the e8400 @ 4.0ghz, or the 3 hd’s, disc drives etc… It was the Radeon 4890 gpu. Which, to get back on point, runs, like all gpu’s off the 12v rail. Moral of the story: total wattage does not mean jack if don’t have enough amperage on a particular rail.

          2. When buying a no-name power supply employ the rule of 100. Whatever it says the ‘total wattage is, subtract by 100. If you’re a technically savvy individual and you’d like to know why check out link to

          Finally, while everyone knows Corsair to be a great brand of PSU I’d like to make a recommendation for Antec since many of their PSU’s rely on the same OEM’s (Seasonic, Delta) which are generally known as the best in the business. Here’s what has proven reliable for me link to

          • stupid_mcgee says:

            Not to be pedantic, but it’s specifically the voltage on the rail. Ampere is the measure of the flow of electricity. Watts = volt * amp. You could have a 6v drawing 12 amps to give you 72 watts, or you could have 12v at 6 amps to give you 72 watts. From my limited electrical knowledge, it doesn’t matter how many amps you draw; if you’re not drawing them at 12v, that GPU is still going to underperform and you are putting it at significant risk of failure. I totally understand what you mean, but my OCD nature required me to clarify that a bit.

            Also, I would like to agree on going middle-of-the-road on the PSU, specifically Antec. I’ve had my 500W Antec PSU for about 6 or so years. Prior budget PSUs always had problems, most notably with fuses, sometimes with the capacitors. I don’t run a beast of a machine, only draws around 300 watts under full load, (i5 2500k, 2x4GB DDR3, HD4850, 3 SATA HDDs, 4 USB devices, no LEDs nor fans (I use an open-faced case and just run the heatsink fans))

            If you’re really wondering about your power-draw, then you can always get a plug-in power meter. It will tell you the draw, convert it to kilowatt hours and some will even calculate your daily, monthly, and/or yearly power cost for running that device when you input your cost-per-kilowatt (should be easily found on your electric bill).

          • patstew says:

            No, what he was getting at was that a 300W power supply won’t let you draw 60A at 5V or 25A at 12V (which would both be 300W), instead it will have a much lower limit on each supply voltage which come to 300W when you add up the maximum possible load on every voltage it provides (12V, 5V and 3.3V).
            Some cheap power supplies have a stupidly low limit on, eg, the 12V rail which causes problems even though the total wattage of the system is much less than the wattage of the power supply.
            PC power supplies provide power at constant voltage, if they deviate much at all from the correct values the pc will not work at all, not just ‘underperform’.

      • rei says:

        What most people don’t realise is that when buying a PSU what it says on the box is not who made the thing. There’s no such thing as a PSU made by, say, Corsair; there are only Seasonic, Channel Well etc PSUs that Corsair and the like put a sticker and a premium on. You can get an excellent PSU for a fraction of the price if you educate yourself about the OEM manufacturers.

        Here’s a handy page:
        link to

        • Sakkura says:

          Rebadging doesn’t necessarily inflate the price. The most expensive Seasonic-made PSUs are the one with a Seasonic sticker on the side, while the ones with XFX on the side are usually quite affordable.

      • Kinth says:

        I’ve had the opposite sort of luck.

        I bought a budget 550W PSU about 5-6 years ago and the thing is still running a mid-high end PC.

        I bought a Corsair PSU to replace it and the Corsair just sits in a box due to tremendous amounts of utterly horrific coil whine when it is switched off. It seems it’s leaking electricity through when it shouldn’t be since the whine will only stop if it is turned off at the plug. Had it replaced and the exact same thing happened again and the replacement after that did it too.

        I dread upgrading my PC because when I do I know I’m going to need a higher watt supply and my luck with supposed top market PSU’s has been abysmal.

      • iridescence says:

        Yeah, losing 2 expensive systems to cheap PSUs frying the other components has made me very leery of “bargain” PSUs. I’d say do research into what brands are reliable and buy a little stronger one than you think you need. The extra $20-40 you may spend will help your system last a lot longer.’

        • Kiwipower says:

          My rig is 7 years old now going on 8. My Corsair HX1000 PSU still works fine, no noises. Rated for 40A on 12V rail. We live on a remote farm and when we first built the PC we had no power accept modified sinewave power from our off grid setup. Even feeding it bassically square wave power for years it still works. We are connected to the grid now so its on sinewave power like normal. But that’s tough right? Best PSU around I think!

          And yes some farmers have high end PCs lol Even if they have no power that doesn’t stop us lol

  2. Radiant says:

    More importantly the games you buy for the pc you’ll still be able to play for a lot longer then the shelf life of the xbox or ps4.

    I’m incredibly pissed off that the vast majority of the wonderful indie and smaller titles I have bought for my consoles are now in danger of becoming obsolete.
    Or worse being ‘turned off’.

    Why would I even buy a digital copy of a game for any of the outgoing consoles this year?

    • honky mcgee says:

      Well crap! Just remembered that I had purchased quite a few indie/arcade jems on my Xbox 360 (limbo, ilo-milo, super meat boy, all of seasons 3-4 of Breaking Bad) which is now a glorified dvd player for my ex-girlfriend.

  3. Belsameth says:

    While technically true, you can never squeeze the same amount of power out of a PC with comparative parts to console boxes. PC’s have far more overhead, if only due to the fact you can’t build games for specific hardware due to the large variety of configurations.

    • Mctittles says:

      Windows probably bloats their OS on purpose to make the XBOX look better.

      • trjp says:

        Hey – your tinfoil hat slipped – no, ok, it’s ok

        • Shodex says:

          Whether he’s right or not, I don’t know. But I do know that it wouldn’t be the first time Microsoft has sneakily made something worse on purpose to sell the “better” version.

        • Mctittles says:

          I imagine the real reason is more likely because a bunch of jaded cubicle workers could care less and just want to throw something together on top of the old code quick so they can be done. However I wouldn’t put it past them.

          • Rikard Peterson says:

            More likely the need for compatibility (which is after all the main reason anyone is running Windows) and security.

          • stupid_mcgee says:

            Rikard Peterson, be gone with your logic and reason! Can’t you see? We’re busy hastily throwing together inane theories about MS purposefully throttling their OS in a conspiracy to specifically ensure high sales of XBox consoles, all based on simple, groundless conjecture and wild speculation.

            Is MS run by leprechauns entrenched by the New World Order to ensure the Illuminati can control the stratosphere with their weather weapons? I don’t know. Maybe. I’m just asking questions…

          • Mctittles says:

            I don’t think compatibility is the reason I see old XP or 98 style dialog boxes in WIN7 if I dig deep enough or even changing some registry entries removes the “re-skin” of some areas or goes directly to the stuff that is layers deep that they are calling from newMenu1->newMenut2->firstMenu etc.

            You don’t have to dig too deep to see they just pile up instead of reworking for many things that have nothing to do with backward compatibly.

        • monstermagnet says:

          @trjp: Dude, that’s hilarious:)

      • cunningmunki says:

        Hence them giving the XBone no less than three operating systems.

      • braincruser says:

        They can’t, doing so will piss of about 100% of the proffesionals that work with programs like photoshop, maya and almost everyone with access to profilers that would see the change. And let me tell you how royally pissed NVIDIA, AMD, INTEL and the rest of the companies would be,at least it would put their lawyer armada in a good mood.

      • Ergates_Antius says:

        Yes, because obviously the majority of Microsofts profits come from selling Xboxes rather than, for instance, selling OS’s and office software to businesses.

    • Doghaus says:

      Yeah they mention that in first paragraph of the article.

      • Widthwood says:

        They don’t properly mention the most important part – 8 gigs of shared memory between GPU and CPU on both boxes. Even considering only 6 (ps4) are avaliable – it is impossible to completely match that on PC without going into “ridiculously expensive” territory. Buying 8 gigs of RAM does not make PC its equivalent.

        I’d say if your goal is to build a PC that can RUN next gen titles comfortably instead of being kind of alike on paper – you’d better buy the FASTEST single GPU 4+ gig video card you can afford (except for titan), and 16 gigs of RAM instead of 8 (though perhaps it is better to buy 8, and later add another 8). Obviously entire PC will cost more that 500 pounds – but frankly I don’t see any reason to limit yourself based on an arbitrary price of entirely different kinds of devices, apart from ability to write sensationalist article titles.

        • RDG says:

          I don’t see why you would have to go for 16GB, care to elaborate? The games on the PS4 have 6GB of RAM available which means 2GB of the 8GB is reserved for system resources. Since Windows 7 uses at most 2GB for the OS, I don’t see how you would have to go to 16GB to keep up, especially since you would be using seperate GDDR5 for the GPU. Sure, quantity over quality for memory, but I think you will be just fine with 8GB DDR3 as well.

          • Widthwood says:

            Yeah, its not essential, but then you’d have to close browser and other ram eating programs before launching games, which is not very convenient if you just want to take a break from working on something. When I had 8 gigs of ram with eclipse, chrome, skype, foobar, etc open they could easily leave 2-3 free gigs, with chrome alone taking around 2+gb.
            12gb would do, but I’m not sure 6gb sticks are available right now, and 8gb + 4gb or 3*4gb is just wrong from performance perspective (unless you own i7XE, but.. I doubt anyone here does :) ).

    • InternetBatman says:

      Yes, consoles do have an overhead advantage, but console OS are getting far beefier in the past. The Xbone has 3g RAM always dedicated to the OS. Valve has also said that you can get closer to a console experience with OpenGL. Considering that Windows 7 has 2 gig recommended RAM, and Linux Mint has 1 gig, I don’t think the direct to metal advantage is really all that strong any more.

    • Thirst says:

      At best it’s a few percent difference, your cpu and gpu does not run anything in the background unless you have something like norton anitvirus installed meaning there is no performance hit. The only thing that might matter is memory.

      If you have 4GB of ram games might need more than that since Windows can take 1GB+ by itself. But since memory is so cheap these days that 8GB of ram costs less than as a new game there is no reason not to have that, meaning there is no performance hit there either.

  4. Radiant says:

    Also could pc peripheral makers hurry up and make a box that allows me to stream games from my pc upstairs to my tv downstairs please.

    This way I can forget consoles all together.

    I don’t want to stream it from ‘the cloud’ I just want to stream it from 5 metres away.

    • Belsameth says:

      YES! *cough*

    • cunningmunki says:

      I believe the Good Lord Gabe and his devoted adepts at Valve are working on such a thing. Why this hasn’t already been done also staggers me.

    • Moraven says:

      Long HDMI cable and wireless K/M?

      There is some wireless HDMI options but are not as reliable.

      • cunningmunki says:

        You saw the ‘downstairs’ bit?

        • Moraven says:

          I saw the 5 meters bit, which is a relatively short distance. People do string wire through their walls and ventilation.

          • Radiant says:

            This is true but I have no idea why people have worked out how to render and stream pc games from miles away yet no one has an ‘in home’ solution yet.

            Ps the last time I took a drill to my floor I ended up chit chatting and having drinks and canapes in the subterranean homeworld of mole men who were previously hell bent on conquering the earth before I smoozed them out of it.

          • Radiant says:

            I was upstairs.

          • roryok says:

            Those moles sound malignant. You should get them checked out.

      • mickygor says:

        There’s also HDMI over Power.

    • Reapy says:

      Sort of have the same thought…would a KVM do it, or is there too much input lag? I’ve used them at work to interact with server racks in another room, but granted I’ve only been coding on them or whatever, no need for gaming, also they aren’t that cheap.

      I wonder if there is an input lag or signal degradation associated with a longer hdmi cable, like can you get a 20 foot one or something?

      I’ve been going back with the same question…what do I get on my tv? I have a cheaper htpc I got for XBMC but have discovered its great for emulators and indie games, and hell, even ran guild wars 2 reasonably well. Still it is not the gaming machine, and it’s a shame I can’t just swap over the display to the tv from time to time.

      I’m hoping over time the exclusive games thing will putter out and most things will be ported over to pc, so this xmas is going to be a PC upgrade rather than a console, and in about a year or so I’ll see how the games shake out…as usual a must play exclusive game = console purchase.

    • Mr Monotone says:

      Going off memory I’m pretty sure that wireless HDMI is actually a thing. A very expensive thing with latency problems but still.

    • Ovno says:

      Already exists, tried it years ago and it worked well…

      link to

    • luukdeman111 says:

      I recently heard something about wireless hdmi…. it’s a real thing! not sure how well it works though but that might be a solution…

      EDIT goddamnit luuk read the posts before you start screaming stuff that has already been said before. sincerely, Luuk’s mom

    • MattM says:

      They made a wireless gtx 460 that apparently worked well.
      link to
      They don’t seem to have made wireless versions of newer cards though.

    • InternetBatman says:

      Like Cunning said, Valve’s trying to build a device to do that for $100.

    • Grey Poupon says:

      People have been playing games for years from boxes miles away and now there’s even all this cloud gaming hype going on. All you need is a tiny htpc in your living room, a lan cable and a remote control software of your choosing (Windows has one built in even, with clients for other Os’ as well)

  5. hjarg says:

    Btw, the price of Windows should be in the calculation too. Not just hardware, but all necessary things should be in there.

    • Jim Rossignol says:

      Btw, read the article.

      • frightlever says:

        I read the article and your justification for using the OEM license from a hypothetical other PC is going to be against the terms of service. Even if you don’t care about that, you’re effectively removing that other PC from use so you need to add the value of the PC you’ve just lobotomized to the cost of the new build. You can’t have the same key on two different PCs. You might as well offer some handy money-saving advice that involves using PirateBay to get your games.

        I don’t even see what’s so magical about the Xbox One price point. Just accept that a gaming PC with a legitimate OS to comparable spec will always be more expensive and offer you more freedom and a wider range of games than the consoles. There’s an actual trade-off to be made. There’s no best platform.

        • InternetBatman says:

          Yes, there is a trade off to be made, but that doesn’t measure the magnitude of the tradeoff. In this case, European customers are getting a really shitty deal that makes prices almost equal with PCs. There’s a difference between needing a very good PC to take down a PS3 at release, and needing a mediocre one to almost match an Xbox at release.

        • nearly says:

          The whole point is that you can cut costs by using materials you already have. I, for one, re-used an old hard drive in a new build. Could I still use the PC that I took it out of? Sure, but I’ve just replaced a six year old system, I don’t imagine I’d get much use out of it anyway.

          If you’re replacing a modern system with something incrementally better, you probably don’t need to worry about “adding the value” to the new one because, hey, this is your second PC in what, a year?. And if you’re replacing something (much) older, I don’t think its tangible monetary value is really going to exceed the cost of a new OS, just as I think the PC you’re effectively replacing is not going to have much tangible value to someone (yourself) with a significantly better one.

        • Liudeius says:

          I don’t know about the ToS, and I don’t self build, but you require a computer to read this website (unless you use a library/webcafe), so you already have one (which we are assuming is inferior).
          So just take the hard drive out of your current computer, and put it in this setup (and Windows is installed on the drive, so unless there is some block I am unaware of, it should work).

          You don’t need to include the cost of the old computer because they already had it. Upgrading just makes the computer serve its previous purpose in addition to acting as a gaming PC. You can spend 425 pounds and get an XbOne, or you can spend it to make the computer you are using to read this site have superior power compared to an XbOne and still function for reading this site.

          And your point about there “always being a downside” is questionable as well. Look at the absurd deals PC gamers can get.
          I got DX:HR (+DLC), Just Cause 2, Supreme Commander 2, Hitman: Blood Money and some lesser games for $10 in an Amazon sale.
          SR3, Metro 2033, and Darksiders for as little as $1 from the THQ Humble Bundle.
          Dragon Age: Origins + DLC and DA2 for $10 from Gamers Gate.

          That is (at minimum) $21 for a bunch of good games, while it would have all cost a minimum of $180 (assuming $20 a game, which is a rare, but attainable, discount for console).
          That alone makes up for any price gap between PC and console, and there are plenty of other great sales (like Steam sales in general).

          If you play a large number of games, and are willing to wait for a couple months after release, you can save a huge amount of money by playing on PC. (In addition to having modding access and tons of great indies.)

          The only problem is that DRM is standard thanks to Steam becoming dominant, but due to piracy if you really hate DRM, you can still download a crack for the more draconian stuff. (I know I have absolutely never cracked anything after legally purchasing it because the DRM was absurd.)

        • Deadly Sinner says:

          If you absolutely need that second computer, then put Linux on it. It’s not like you’re going to be gaming on it.

    • Moraven says:

      Live Subscription = Windows OS is a great way to compare the costs.

      Live for US is $50-$60. Think I see Windows 7 Home drop to $80, Pro to $120. So after 2 years of online gaming on your Xbox you equal the cost of Windows 7 key. You could argue Windows 7 gives you online game access.

      Keep a PC for 4 years and you could keep adding up the Live subscription costs.

      • Timmytoby says:

        I bought another copy of Windows 7 Home about 3 month ago, because I couldn’t find my old copy anymore.
        I paid 36€ including delivery.

        Why would you pay 80 $ for a copy of Win 7 Home?

    • Shodex says:

      I understand that not everyone has seen the light and switched to Linux, but do people actually pay the incredibly high price to buy Windows?

      • battles_atlas says:

        Yeah, I think its something about wanting 80% of games to run on your system, and you to not require a degree in IT and the willingness to wade through endless forum pages just to get basic things to work. And yes, speaking from experience. I tried to build a media PC using MythTV once – never again.

        • InternetBatman says:

          How long ago was that. My Linux media box is humming along now. It was actually easier to get Linux to work than windows.

          • jalf says:

            Big surprise. People who know Linux find it easy to set up.

            In other news, it was recently found that most car owners know how to drive, and that most buyers of books know how to read.

            All of which proves absolutely nothing.

          • Torn says:

            Jalf you realise Linux *is* trivial to set up these days? Ubuntu is as easy as Windows – probably more so than Windows 8.

      • MerseyMal says:

        Incredibly high?

      • stupid_mcgee says:

        Until Adobe’s CS runs reliably on Linux and a lot of developers start porting to Linux, yes, I’m sticking buying a copy of Windows every-other generation.

      • Liudeius says:

        Because most games are for Windows.
        Personally I would be very glad if PC gaming switched to Linux.
        M$ has repeatedly shown apathy for PC gaming, or even distaste with few 360 exclusives on PC even though it’s also their system, GFWL, Windows 8 being a tablet OS but required for some new games.

        But I’ve not switched to Linux because I’m under the impression that it’s still not readily supported enough for my to be able to use only it, and I don’t want to bother with multiple OS’s on my computer.

    • Zekiel says:

      Can you really get Windows 7/8 for £40? Thought it was more lke £80.

      • mickygor says:

        I picked up a license for £50 a couple of years ago.

        • MacTheGeek says:

          If you pay close attention during the launch cycle, you can score Windows keys fairly cheap. Over a period of about six months surrounding the Win7 launch, I was able to obtain 5 legitimate keys for about $100 total.

  6. trjp says:

    AMD called – they said that building to a budget with Intel gear is stupid.

    I agreed with them – no, seriously, you’re telling people to buy an i5 on a socket which has upgrade potential but then buy a SHIT motherboard which makes no sense.

    Building to the XBONE budget – a 970 AMD board with an FX-6300 in it – 8Gb RAM, a 7790, PSU and case and you’re probably lagging a bit on power AND you’re short the cost of WIndows but then the PC does far more and…

    e.g. building a PC to the XBONE budget is both silly and pointless in every sense of the thing.

    • HLP The E says:

      I built a system like that recently (FX6300, Radeon 7850, Samsung 840 SSD, other bits) for ~700 EUR. I am not foreseeing any difficulties with running the next generation of games on it.

      • trjp says:

        You shouldn’t have any – but people are comparing silly things like freqs and other nonsense and the 7790 I reckon you need to get under budget is perhaps a BIT low for 1080 gaming – perhaps…

        What you’ve built will run anything they’re likely to release in the next 3+ years at a decent level tho – and that’s all that really matters to most people…

        People who demand more – would look down on the XBONE anyway…

      • HadToLogin says:

        I really hope you right, but this-gen showed you need PC generation better than consoles to play fine. Consoles had GeForce 7xxx like inside, PCs needed GeForce 8800, or even 9xxx as minimum.
        On the other hand Unreal Engine 4 already works without problems on current PCs, so maybe it won’t be that bad…

    • ScubaMonster says:

      Intel / Nvidia > AMD. But I do agree, AMD is better for a budget. Intel is better for performance though.

    • hatseflats says:

      I agree. This advice is rubbish.

      In general, I think, you can match the XONE, but not like this.

      An FX 6300 offers amazing value for money; it’s cheap and actually really powerful. Its power doesn’t always show, as most software isn’t optimised for using 6 cores, but especially since the next generation of consoles have 8 cores, the focus will obviously be on multicore performance. The FX 6300 is much more powerful than the XONE and PS4 CPUs and is both now and (due to improved multithreaded software) in the future a very good choice. You can even overclock it to get some more performance. This saves £40-50.
      One can then use the money saved on buying a better mainboard. This is actually an important component; it matter for overclocking, but I especially find the sound chip to be important. Even as someone who is not a sound enthusiast, you can hear the difference between a bad and a proper sound chip. This is important for gaming.
      The rest of the money can be spent on buying a decent PSU (as outlined above, this is extremely important as a cheap PSU will fail and might destroy the res tof the components).

      However, I think we shouldn’t try to get a PC for the same cost as a console, as anyone who has a console also needs a PC. If you spend £400 on a console and £300 on a PC, you can get better performance on both by spending £650, i.e. by spending less, and if you select the right components this will probably outlast a cheap PC and, if the previous generation of consoles is anything to go on, a console as well.

      • iainl says:

        The thing is, most people who don’t already play PC games have laptops. So you can’t rely on them having cases, PSUs etc.

    • killias2 says:

      It’s absolutely hilarious how far he goes out of his way to avoid suggesting an AMD CPU. Honestly, for a budget gaming PC, there’s nothing wrong with an AMD CPU. Sure, they generally suck in comparison, but most PC games tend to use the GPU more anyway. Only a few games are really that CPU heavy, like, say, Blizzard’s games, and these tend to be easier on overall requirements anyway.

      I have a nice i7 (i5 probably would’ve been more sensible in retrospect, as I don’t have the cooling to really unlock the power here), but my previous desktop (built 2007) had a shitty old x2 5400+ in it. However, with a 8800 GT (and later a 9800 GTX after it died on me), it can still run the vast majority of the games available at acceptable settings. Max settings? No. But this is meant to be a budget gaming PC used to contrast with consoles. I’m not sure Max settings is the benchmark you need to hit, at least more than a couple years in the future.

      As much as I prefer Intels, for a budget gaming PC, it probably makes more sense to get a cheap AMD CPU and a good video card.

      • F3ck says:

        While I am on board with everything you’ve said (I buy only AMD, all my Intel hdwr was salvaged) I don’t understand one thing:

        Your i7 was likely expensive, why not drop another $100 on an H100i?

        • Sakkura says:

          Because the H100i is a waste of money compared to a decent air cooler.

    • alw says:

      Just logged in to say thanks for that suggestion. My PC is on death’s door – I didn’t think I was going to get it to boot again (getting the click of death from the HDD). I needed a cheap replacement for CPU, motherboard, memory and OS. Originally, I was looking at an i3 setup, but having checked out the suggested AMD one, I saved around £60. The comparison site I looked at seemed to suggest it’s a fair bit better too. I just placed the order at Aria a few minutes ago :)

  7. cairbre says:

    Has the site been optimised for mobile it’s looking great on my iPhone today

      • cunningmunki says:

        I noticed this a few days ago. Well done.

      • Gap Gen says:

        Yeah, this is great, good work.

      • derbefrier says:

        yup looks good but comments can get screwed up when theres a shit ton of them but at least I can read the articles!

      • dahools says:

        Disagree too. It messed up massively now. I thought it was my dolfin browser had updated or something. Comments are unreadable now if there are more than 5replies cascading it doesn’t expand sideways just narrows sideways until there is two letters per line. Go back or fix it please.

        Regards the article. Never mind windows plus a reliable psu. I can give you that. I do however think you should be including a blu ray drive and either a pad or respectable keyboard and mouse as both consoles come with these and are required to play games or watch the HD films which is a big selling point. Because that small but nice SSD will fill up pretty quick if you are thinking of holding HD films on there too.
        Could argue all day on what to put in but i agree with others if you are going to recommend S1150 for future proofing you would not pick the cheapest board which probably won’t support the chip update in 18 months time.

        • dahools says:

          OH and another thing when I click next page of comments it stays at the bottom of the page and I have to scroll all the way up each time. Another improvement for going mobile I guess. Just to let you know!

      • DrGonzo says:

        Could you maybe have someone take a look at it on Windows Phone? The site has always worked fine on my phone, until a few days ago, now all the formatting is broken in the comments.

  8. Soulstrider says:

    I wish I wasn’t limited to laptops due to always moving around, a good laptop isn’t nearly as cheap, at least where I live.

  9. Pliqu3011 says:

    I agree with most of the article, but choosing that cheap PSU is just asking for explosions and whatnot.
    Never, NEVER try to save money on a power supply, it’s the heart of your PC. Spend some more and get one from a reputable brand, like Corsair, Seasonic, etc. It’s definitely worth it.

    • Tacroy says:

      Totally – you should be spending a lot more than that on a PSU.

      • Quinnbeast says:

        link to

        Last time around, I went for the clearly-overkill-with-added-shiny approach. This thing is what Skynet uses as a PSU. Completely inaudible over the rest of the system even approaching full load, so it scratches my modest OCD itch juuuuuust nicely. My PC get uses both for fairly heavy gaming and as a Photoshop workhorse, so spending 10% of the total cost on a bulletproof PSU with a good warranty doesn’t seem especially extravagant.

    • derbefrier says:

      yes do not skimp on a PSU. I learned this the hard way. just dont do it spend another 50 bucks to get a good one. those cheap Chinese power supplies are a huge gamble and can easily take out your motherboard.

    • Radiant says:

      The thing, as well, is that the PSU is one of the most important things in your pc but every hardware article about pc components [even on here] glosses over this essential bit of kit.

      PSUs and talking about display lag when covering a new monitor are two of the most over looked yet crucial bits of gaming pcs.

    • coffeetable says:

      Agreed, a £17 PSU sets off alarm bells. Especially a 700W one for a setup that’d draw 400W at most.

      • Wisq says:

        Ah, this I disagree with. You do want to over-watt your PSU, for a few reasons:

        1. Most companies cite their wattage while running the PSU under lab conditions rather than in-case conditions, i.e. usually at way too low a temperature. Actual usable wattage drops as temperature increases — and when temperature is high, that’s when you need the most wattage.

        2. If you do go cheap (which I don’t recommend), it gives you extra headroom and a little extra peace of mind that you won’t go too high and blow something.

        3. PSUs are more efficient when only moderately loaded. Aim for about 50% to 70% load at most.

        • Rufustan says:

          Had to agree with this. PSUs hate to die alone. Like most people, I’ve learned from expensive experience. £15-£20 saved on a PSU seems good until it costs you £200+ in MOBO, CPU and memory.

          Start a build with a reliable brand PSU, and if necessarily skimp a little elsewhere.

        • Sakkura says:

          1. The reputable brands don’t do that.

          2. It’s better to go for low wattage and high quality than high wattage and low quality, if you can’t afford high wattage and high quality.

          3. PSUs are most effective when moderately loaded, so going with an oversized PSU means it’ll be less efficient most of the time. Grabbing a reasonably sized PSU is better unless you want room for upgrades (like adding a second graphics card later on).

        • Strabo says:

          Next to the fact that PSUs run most efficient at around 50 % of their maximum capacity, the inards also age, making them less capable over time, so you want to oversize them by at least 50 % (most people overestimate how much their PC uses though – 300 Watt is something High-End systems under full load take, the builds shown here are under 200 Watt).

  10. Rossi says:

    Also have to remember that these consoles are being sold at a loss and don’t reflect the true cost of the hardware. So £500 is probably spot on.

  11. Inverselaw says:

    I designed a similarily specced thing as a plug into TV computer with one of those PSU integrated low profile computer cases (size of a VCR or so).

    • frightlever says:

      Parts list? I keep looking off and on for a decent low profile case but they usually have weeny PSUs, no room for a meaty GPU or some other problem.

      • Inverselaw says:

        Umm well The one I designed has a weany PSU and a not very powerfull card. I mostly designed it as a multimedia player and for playing games that are either gamepad compatible or trackpad compatible (turn base).

        Heres the parts list from a while back

        IN WIN IW-BL672.300TBLF Black MicroATX Slim Case S.F.F Computer Case 300W Power Supply

        ASUS P8B75-M/CSM LGA 1155 Intel B75 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard

        ASUS EAH6570/DI/1GD3(LP) Radeon HD 6570 1GB 128-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready Low Profile Ready Video Card

        Intel Core i3-2120 Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz LGA 1155 65W Dual-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 2000 BX80623I32120

        CORSAIR XMS3 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMX8GX3M2B1600C9

        Nippon Labs Delux 3.5″ Internal All In One Card Reader/Writer with USB2.0 & eSATA Ports Model ICR-BB

        Western Digital WD Blue WD5000AAKX 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5″ Internal Hard Drive

        ASUS Black Blu-ray Drive SATA Model BC-12B1ST/BLK/B/AS

        • Sakkura says:

          That’s not similarly specced. The graphics card is crap, unsuitable for gaming above the Dota 2 level.

  12. Initialised says:

    FTFY: “if you’re building your own PC right now, you might Haswell get one “

  13. bstard says:

    A blasphemous project. That false box is an heresy. There’s only one true console and the copy protection is his prophet!

  14. serioussgtstu says:

    Alec isn’t going to say it so I will, MS got a third party company called Digital River Content to run their digital download service for windows 7, and they opened their servers to everyone, because they’re dumb. If you already own a copy of windows 7, go ahead and get yourself another copy. You’re completely justified in doing so IMO. Activating it is a different issue, but it’s not rocket science.

    Or just use Linux and everyone wins.

    Post deleted in 5…4…3…

    • iniudan says:

      It just the disc ISO, it worth nothing by itself, you still need a license to activate the product you know.

      Ask any IT professional, you think we get official disk from Microsoft ? MS don’t freaking care that you copy the disk, has long has your product is properly licensed. (Which is usually what a Technet account is, that let you download from their official channel, it a license to do anything but production)

      • serioussgtstu says:

        This is for personal use, and the difference between that ISO and a fully functioning copy of windows 7 is a 3mb file that’s available for anyone who wants one. The only questionable part of the process is that MS has only sold you one windows 7 license instead of two. Massive who gives a fuck.

        • iniudan says:

          I sure don’t give a fuck, has much as I can, I leave licensing to someone else, if possible, has I just want to poke my eye out each time I have to professionally deal with software licensing, my study focused on networking and system administration not freaking law. =p

          • serioussgtstu says:

            It’s actually copyright infringement, which isn’t illegal where I live; so all they could do is fine me, which wouldn’t be possible because they’d have to prove that I did it, and between 4 and 6 other people use the same IP address as me at any one time. So good luck to them, I guess.

            Your way is definitely smarter though.

  15. iniudan says:

    Why use an intel and nvidia for a single gpu build ? Nvidia advantage is that it got better SLI optimization then AMD Crossfire is and for gaming Intel CPU only have advantage in a multi GPU set up, unless you playing something like Supreme Commander, which is one of the rare CPU intensive game.

    In other word for any single GPU build you go all out AMD, maybe nvidia GPU when they happen to have a good value one out (but AMD usually have a douzen of good performance/price model for one nvidia has)

    But if you building multi GPU, yes go intel and nvidia, it will beat the crap of AMD in such set up.

    then the saving on GPU and CPU on a better motherboard.

  16. mangrove says:

    The PS4 looks a bit like the robots you got on “Robot Wars” that would try to trip the other robots up.

  17. Moraven says:

    Using newegg for USA prices, I came at around ~$695 with a 1TB drive.
    Could save $50-$100 getting an AMD cpu instead.
    Save $50 getting a lesser GPU.

    Xbone is $499 for us.

    You should also add an wireless controller, which a console comes with.
    $45 more there.

    $30 for wireless K/B.

    So in the $770 range now.

    • InternetBatman says:

      A lot of that reflects the difference between European pricing and American pricing. A European X-box is $658 in USD.

  18. fishies says:

    I realise there’s some journalistic license for the point of the article here, but please please please PLEASE never tell people to skimp on a power supply. It’s like buying a brand new HDTV and then balancing it precariously on a thin table made of glass

    • biggergun says:

      This. I had three innocent motherboards in a row destroyed by a murderous PSU. Each one lasted barely half a year.

      • mickygor says:

        On the other hand, I had a £140 Antec PSU blow up on me after 2 months and take my motherboard and processor with it :P

        • biggergun says:

          Well, yes, I have a friend who owns a five-year-old ungodly expensive Corsair 1000W PSU, gold, platinum, unicorn blood and whatever-certified, and the thing just loves randomly overvoltaging GPUs. Oddly enough, works as a clock with everything else.

    • iniudan says:

      Yes always get a Seasonic PSU if can spare the expense, they consistently make some of the best PSU, since they are a PSU ODM (so they only release high end PSU under their own brand, has they also create PSU for different OEM, so they don’t want to undercut their main clients), unlike most PSU OEM brand who just ask some ODM to make them for them then slap their brand on it.

      Here a nice list of PSU OEM and who make what for them.
      link to

      • Sakkura says:

        Protip: Lots of other PSUs are made by Seasonic too. Corsair’s high-end PSUs are Seasonic-made. Most of Antec’s PSUs are Seasonic-made. All of XFX’s PSUs are Seasonic-made.

        Then again, Seasonic isn’t the only company that can build high-quality PSUs. They’re just the most widely available.

        • iniudan says:

          Only certain Antec model are manufactured by Seasonic, but they all Antec PSU are of Antec own design. (basically Antec is like AMD, they don’t have their own manufacturing facility)

          But yes they are multiple PSU that are good, but shrug if money is not a problem I always get Seasonic, so I don’t waste time doing research on a component I don’t have much interest in.

  19. gjrud says:

    I’m sorry but I don’t agree with your part list:
    The CPU you picked is pretty good, the problem is that you can get away with a cheaper alternative without noticing much difference gaming wise, while using the extra saved for better parts.
    Cheap motherboards should always be avoided, even when you are not overclocking a decent mobo will provide a more stable current and let your processor live longer.
    GPU wise your is a good choice, there isn’t much choice with limited budget.
    The PSU you suggested is what forced me to post: first of all it’s too big (which translates to “less efficient”, it will draw more power from the wall compared to a smaller one at equal consumption) and most importantly it’s a no name PSU. The power supply is one of the hardest part to manufacture and there is a reason why it’s considered the most important part of a computer: because if it fails it can bring all other components with it. XFX 450 and 550W are very good PSU while being very cheap for their voltage (are manufactured by Seasonic, one of the best PSU manufacturer)
    About the SSD: I’m usually against suggesting SSDs on budget lists, in my opinion people should get 500 GB or 1TB HDD before considering a solid state one.

    I took the freedom to make a list myself applying my points, I also picked a better GPU (almost comparable to a 660 TI both using latest drivers) but It’s around 20£ more expensive than your list :
    CPU: AMD FX-6350 3.9GHz 6-Core Processor (£98.39 @ Aria PC)
    Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-990XA-UD3 ATX AM3+ Motherboard (£84.73 @ Dabs)
    Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory (£41.77 @ Amazon UK)
    Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5″ 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive (£44.99 @ Aria PC)
    Video Card: PowerColor Radeon HD 7870 XT 2GB Video Card (£180.42 @ Ebuyer)
    Case: NZXT Source 210 Elite (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case (£41.99 @ Amazon UK)
    Power Supply: XFX 550W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply (£52.59 @ Dabs)
    Total: £544.88
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-06-14 14:23 BST+0100)

    EDIT: I apologize for my English.

    • RCoon says:

      Glad somebody here has sense, i dont think the rig mentioned in the article is a sensible budget gaming PC at all. That choice of PSU is essentially asking to be buggered in the ass by a PSU frequently.

    • dahools says:

      Please post a link to that 7870 xt for 180 quid I would consider one at that price.
      Ebuyer doesnot have that model at all. Plus I have not seen one for less than 200 pounds at least, probably nearer 210, anywhere.

      EDIT, found it. Out of stock and its not an xt Reading through the description. That pc part picker site has it down wrong me thinks or ebuyers description is wrong. Powercolor website doesn’t say so I would safely assume not.

      • MerseyMal says:

        looking at the model code it’s actually the PowerColor PCS HD7870 MYST which is Tahiti LE based (so slightly faster if a bit more power hungry than an XT) and Ebuyer doesn’t seem to have it in stock whatever price they actually sold for it.

        Looking at Amazon it’s going for £212 there, I suppose a £20ish price difference wouldn’t be beyond the realms of possibility though

        • gjrud says:

          Yes, apparently they sold all of them since I posted that list D:

        • dahools says:

          If it is tahiti le then thats really good value. No wonder they sold out. Think thats the card I will go for when I’ve the pennies.

        • Sakkura says:

          7870 XT is the SAME THING as Tahiti LE. And £180 is normal or slightly higher than usual pricing for it.

    • BubuIIC says:

      A ‘bigger’ PSU will not draw more power. The specified wattage is the maximum rating which the PSU can supply. Your 500 W PSU won’t draw 500 W if your PC is on idle and doing nothing. You can measure it, it may be around 70 W but can vary a lot depending on hardware / software configuration. It’ll be a lot more when CPU and GPU get busy.

      All that matters for power consumption is energy efficiency of the PSU. Usually more recent and more expensive ones fare better here.

      • Sakkura says:

        PSUs are more efficient with loads around 50-60%. At low load they get very inefficient.

    • Arkh says:

      I have to disagree on the AMD FX-6350 CPU. I have a 1090T and they have similar performance. That said, a 1090T has a shitty performance and fuck that thing I had to turn two cores off because that fucking shit thing keeps overheating.

    • TechnicalBen says:

      Logged in just to back you too. Everyone forgets the 1/2 cores in the consoles are saved for “OS/apps”, so could probably be ignored in a gaming PC, as it’s clock is faster, so it’s probably multitasking anyhow.
      Add to that the savings of an AMD system over an Intel (like for like here, it’s a console we are trying to beat, not another PC :P ) and lots of savings can be made.

    • HadToLogin says:

      I think this choice of CPU comes from that magic “new CPU socket”. You either get it now and only change CPU later, or you’ll change both motherboard and CPU later.
      Questions are, will it stay and will we need to change your CPU.

    • Quinnbeast says:

      Yeah – a PSU with a retail cost of £17 might well be under a tenner at trade cost. Why anyone would think it a good idea to attach £500 of electronics to a PSU that gets bought by retailer for the same price as three supermarket sandwiches is utterly mystifying.

  20. biggergun says:

    I’d still go for an AMD chip, and a cheaper one at that.
    Yes, i5 is faster in most synthetic tests, but most synthetic tests have absolutely no real-world relevance whatsoever. Not to mention that AMD still soundly beats Intel in perfomance-per-dollar fight, and AM3+ has excellent upgrade potential.

  21. drinniol says:

    The LGA 1155 series will be more than adequately futureproof for quite some time. You could save some moolah and get a board that isn’t entry level at the same time.

  22. roryok says:

    … Windows 7 or 8 (there’s no cast iron reason to upgrade to 8, which is generally a little more expensive; it’s a little quicker in some ways, but from experience of using it as my main OS for six months now, it won’t make a meaningful difference regardless of inevitable apologists’ claims).

    It’s a breath of fresh air for an RPS article to mention Windows 8 and then not call anyone who likes it a bunch of drooling morons or whatever. Thanks.

    • basilisk says:

      Agreed. I think it’s telling that most of those “apologists” are merely saying exactly what Alec does here – while there really is no particularly good reason to upgrade from 7, it’s nonsensical to avoid 8 if you’re building a new PC. In other words, that there’s no meaningful difference between the two, regardless of what the internet hivemind claims.

      • HadToLogin says:

        Because internet doesn’t attack Windows 8 (well, maybe Metro). Internet hates the policies MS included or at least was trying to include along, which MIGHT bring Windows 9 with “we will decide what you can use” policy (practically turning PCs into anotherBox).

        • basilisk says:

          That’s where you’d be wrong. Most discussions I’ve seen, including here on RPS, make it sound like the work of the devil himself, “utterly unusable”, “tablet OS which barely works on PCs”, “completely destroying the user experience” and this sort of blatant untruths. This particular piece of criticism you’ve mentioned (which is perfectly legitimate, let me add) is heard very rarely, and usually also hyperboled to the moon.

          • Machinations says:

            Just a suggestion. But the reason youre seeing those comments everywhere is because peoe generally are not enthused with changes to ui interface that have been consistent for over a decade. Like many, i fail to see what metro does for my desktop other thalitter it with obnoxious tiles. There is a reason enterprise has completely rejected it.

  23. nopol10 says:

    Also it must not be forgotten that PCs can do so much more than just playing games or watching TV (what’s that?) so even if it is a bit more expensive it is still a million times more priceworthy.

  24. Voltir says:

    This article sadly dose not include OS and controller cost.

    • MerseyMal says:

      Regarding the lack of an OS, read the article.

      • Voltir says:

        Skipping OS is highly illogical in my opinion. New console equals new OS, why do skip it in PC? For honest comparison everything should be NEW on both sides (pc and console).

        • Theory says:

          You don’t need a new OS on PC. That’s another advantage.

          Edit: in fact, why does this article mention a case?

    • Arkh says:

      He mentions the OS and sorry, controllers are not necessary. It assumes you have a mouse and a keyboard, and if you don’t, they are cheap.

  25. Parge says:

    That PSU is rubbish – DO NOT BUY IT!

    Spend slightly more and buy a brand name one, Antec, Enermax, Corsair etc etc.

    • roryok says:

      And get a green one, it’ll save you money on the electric bills

      • mickygor says:

        At first I thought you meant as in one painted green, lol. But yea, that’s another justification for going Intel over AMD for CPU (and Ivybridge over Haswell!)

  26. roryok says:

    With the arrival of these new CPU sockets, the current generation boards / chips should drop in price for the next few months (and then sharply rise, so watch out). I think it makes sense to go for the current / older tech, given Haswell doesn’t offer much improvement

    As to ‘future-proofing’ – I’ve fallen into that trap before. If entry level Haswell boards start at £40, I don’t see why you’d pay more for all your components now when you could just buy that same £40 motherboard the next time you want to upgrade a CPU.

    • Sakkura says:

      That didn’t happen when they released Ivy Bridge, at least not with regard to the CPUs. The old Sandy Bridge parts cost the same as always.

  27. kael13 says:

    Today I saw the new Witcher 3 tech demo and now I sort of want to buy a new PC instead of a laptop as I had originally planned…

    However, the spec I want is a little over £1800, (i7 4770k, GTX780, no monitor – from PC Specialist) and they don’t offer any kind of student discount. So great PCs are still quite expensive.

    On the other hand, I could buy a sensible Apple laptop and a PS4. Or suck it up and just save my money. So now I’m at a dilemma.

    • Sakkura says:

      Drop from the Core i7-4770K and GTX 780 to a Core i5-4670K and GTX 770 or Radeon HD 7970. The Core i7 is not worth it for games, and a GTX 780 is only moderately faster but a lot more expensive; and the GTX 770 and HD 7970 are still very powerful graphics cards. Particularly if you only game on one monitor.

      • RCoon says:

        “sensible apple laptop.”

        Please dont feed this troll :)

      • kael13 says:

        You’re right in that the GTX780 pricing is a little ridiculous, however I’m sort’ve in the habit of buying the best consumer hardware available at the time.

        I already have an i7 960 and 5870s in crossfire; I can just see them not being amazing within the next year or so. I mean, this machine is already three years old. I think you might be right about the i5, though. Hyper-threading is certainly not useful in the slightest whilst gaming.

    • biggergun says:

      You really do not need and i7 to play the Witcher (or anything that will be out in the next five years) maxed out. i5, even the cheapest one, or even an FX will be quite sufficient.

    • AnotherGamingEnglishman says:

      If you’re not trolling, which I have to admit I’m more than a little sceptical about…

      I just need to point out here, what you’re looking to buy is not a “great” PC, it’s a goddamn ridiculous PC! A GTX 780 and an i7 4770k is the most expensive and most powerful CPU/GPU combination you could possibly buy right now (aside from a Titan of course, but those things are pretty irrelevant really). When looking for a 60 fps+ 1080p experience with the next generation of game releases (that surpasses the new consoles), you can easily get away with spending far, far less.

  28. nasenbluten says:

    I did this for my cousin last summer.

    Intel Core i5, 8GB DDR3, AMD 6870, 60GB SSD + 1TB HDDs = ~600 €

    After years playing DS and 360 he was blown away with the steam sale.

  29. Parge says:

    This is what I would buy if I had to just shop at Ebuyer (for simplicitys sake). Decent PSU, cheaper memory, slower CPU, but that won’t make too much difference until your gaming with multiple cards at +1080p, and comes with a heatsink to OC. Awesome GPU and a SSHD – so you get a decent speed boost over HDs but without the size limitions of SSD.

    Crucial 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3 1600Mhz Ballistix Elite Memory Kit CL8 1.5V £44.99

    Fractal Design Core 1000 MicroATX Case £28.00

    Asus M5A78L-M LX3 Socket AM3+ VGA 8 Channel Audio mATX Motherboard £37.46

    AMD FX-6300 3.5GHz Socket AM3+ 14MB Cache Retail Boxed Processor £96.59

    Corsair 500W CX Builder 80 Plus Bronze PSU 3 Year Warranty £42.86

    KFA2 GTX 660 Ti EX OC 2GB GDDR5 £219.50

    Seagate 500GB Hybrid Drive SSHD SATA 6Gb/s £59.99

    Total inc vat: £529.39

    • Sakkura says:

      I would suggest another motherboard, for a higher price. That one only supports low-end CPUs, so you won’t be able to upgrade to a fancy high-end Steamroller CPU later on. It also doesn’t have USB3.0 ports or SATA3 ports.

      Oh, and a 7870 XT is a much better deal than a GTX 660 Ti.

      • Lorewise says:

        I would even say wait for the next generation of AMD A series processors (sometime later this year) because they will be competitively priced and incredible for gaming. The only problem is they will be utilizing a new socket which means everything out now is a waste of money.

  30. Keiggo says:

    Hello all! Would anyone be able to point me at 8GB of trustworthy DDR3 1600 for £50? My (admittedly terrible) googling has been turning up closer to £70

  31. Darkwings says:

    Given the current state of hardware, you could already have built a suitable machine last year without even needing high end stuff.

    Next year you’ll be able to get better hw for the same price point.
    And the year after that… And the year after that…

    Especially true in the case of mid-range hw where adding a second graphic card 1 year later for half the price can be a very good way to dilute the cost over time in case you need extra horse power for that new pc title that uses actual new technology instead of being yet another bad port.

    I mean, it’s always been like that, it’s just that this time there’s so much bad stuff on the console side that more people will think about it.

  32. Chris D says:

    I was just wondering about the “Spend more, it’ll last you longer” bit. Both Microsoft and Sony are making noises about how they expect the next gen to last a decade. While PC hardware may continue to improve, how many developers are actually going to design games that take advantage of it? AAA budgets are high enough as it is. Is it financially viable for developers to produce games solely for high-end PCs?

    Is there a sense in which so long as you can match next-gen console specs that’s really all you’re going to need for a long time.

    I upgraded my PC last year but thinking about the games I actually I play I am wondering if I spent £700 just so I could make the next Total War game really shiny, and I am wondering a bit whether that really represents good value for money.

    • ulix says:

      Look at this (seventh) generation of consoles. Even if you bought a good PC in 2007 (when the conseoles were out) and it could play any multiplatform games easily, by 2010 or 2011 you still had to upgrade to get the most out of current multiplatform titles.

      Firxed hardware of consoles makes it easier for developers to squeeze more out of it.

      • Chris D says:

        Sure, but the situation isn’t the same now. Previously technology was the limiting factor to a game’s performance but as technology has increased development costs have increased too and I think they’re becoming the real limiting factor now. Small and medium developers can’t really afford to take advantage of the full capabilites of the technologies while the larger ones become increasingly conservative because costs are so high they can’t afford to take risks.

        I think there’s a good chance that we’re still stuck in a “got to keep upgrading” mentality that the economics of the industry don’t really support.

  33. odgaf says:

    ive been building pcs for more years than i care to remember

    the quality of todays componants is pretty much awesome
    buy cheap motherboards, buy cheap power supplies and you will rarely get a problem
    ive built literally thousands of pcs and never ever been concerned with the cheapness of parts
    yer parts fail, but to blame it on cheap china is a false economy, just about everything in your pc is made in china,

    the biggest cause of failures in motherboards and powersupplies is people

    every cheap powersupply ive ever had issues with is nearly always because people overload them
    if you want a cheap powersupply buy a cheap system, if you want to upgrade the system, upgrade the powersupply, if you want a good system get a good power supply
    far too many people moan about dodgy powersupplys without realising its them that caused the issue, tiny little cases with no airflow and loads of dust sucked into the supply cause most failures
    some powersupplies would last forever if they had basic maintenance and cooling
    ive been buying xheap motherboards for years never had any real problems, occasionally one will go faulty but thats true for everything
    i see absolutely no point in spending more than a hundred bucks on any motherboard, unless your a bedroom overclocker your wasting your money

    the powersupply in the article is perfect for the type of system its powering
    upgrade that system and you COULD run into trouble
    but most likely itll be ok
    like i said ive built thousands of pcs and probably only returned about 30 power supplies
    of those power supplies maybe 5 or six took out other componants

    buying cheap isnt the problem, the problem is people dont know what the hell they are buying but talk like experts on the subject

    a cheap generic psu rated at 550 watts is never going to be able to go anywhere near that
    you will be lucky to get 350-400 watts, 6 months later its failed cos its running on maximum load

    ahh the experts say, its cos its a cheap and nasty psu see what happens when you buy cheap

    but the truth is if they knew what the hell they were on about in the first place it wouldnt have happened

    • iniudan says:

      The trouble with cheap PSU is that usually the surge protection is crap, basically the day it will die, it might bring the whole system with it. Main reason I avoid them.

      They also usually have poor power efficiency. Not a problem where I live, we have some of the cheapest electricity in the world, but could see it has a problem elsewhere.

      • Sakkura says:

        Not just surge protection. They put out too much ripple, or voltages go out of spec. They sometimes even have important components replaced with lumps of rock. This is not a joke or hyperbole. You can read about it at Hardwaresecrets, one of the most reliable PSU review sites.

        link to

  34. phenom_x8 says:

    OK, nice article Alec.
    And as comparison, this is what I’ve been build (and upgrade):

    CPU : Phenom II x4 840 3.2 Ghz (since 2011)
    GPU : ZOTAC GTX 660 (2013, replacement from my broken 2010’s AMD HD 6850 )
    MB : ECS A780 G v 1.0 (Since 2008)
    RAM : Kingston KVR value 2 x 2 GB DDR 2 (since 2008)
    HDD : 1.5 TB Seagate (since 2013, replacement from my faulty 2005’s MAXTOR 80 GB PATA ) + 160 GB Seagate (since 2006, still in a good shape after a few test)
    Case : Dazumba DVITO 801 (2013, cheap, reliable from local OEM in my country, with stylish design and a lots of Fan)
    PSU : FSP Aurum 450 W 80+ GOLD (2013, replacement for my faulty 2010 Amacrox 450 W PSU)

    In summary, along this year (man, 2013 is trully a memorable year because a lots of my PC parts broken this year almost in a row) I’ve spend about US $350 to upgrade with this detail :
    GPU : Zotac GTX 660 = US $190
    HDD : Seagate 1.5 TB = US $80
    PSU : FSP AURUM = US $55
    Case : Dazumba Dvito 801 = US $28 (link to

    Its trully an humble setup of mine, there is no need of expensive or exotic parts to be a PC gamer after all.
    Some of it even get pass some test through time since my 1st own build PC in 2005. Like my 80 GB HDD whom have been faulty with some read error (although it can still be used after some bad sector repairing) after freaking 8 years (its compatriot, the 2006’s 160GB SEAGATE even still kicking today)
    Just be patient and never follow trends or our wildest PC gamer dreams for high end setup, upgrade if you’re really needs to (after broken parts or trully old parts), use it if its still works fine. Stop compared it with some random guys in the internet who have a thousand dollar PC build.
    You still become a PC gamer as long as you enjoy yourself and take care of your PC (or rigs?) well.
    Be thanks that you can enjoy this luxury called PC gaming, because many can’t afford it. :D

  35. Psymon says:

    I feel that a few more things should be added to the shopping list to give a better apples to apples comparison.
    A keyboard
    A mouse
    A game pad (srsly, what the best name for these?? controller? joypad?)
    A blu-ray drive

    Also, while I am strongly in favor of putting an SSD in, a large HDD would be a better comparison, and save a few quid.
    That few quid should go into a more relaiable PSU too.

    There are plenty of horror stories about the interweb of budget PSUs doing an Andross from Starfox64.
    “If I go down I’m taking you with me”

  36. AnotherGamingEnglishman says:

    For those in the UK looking to upgrade or self-build who are less than confident in their abilities, I’m just gonna throw in a little recommendation for these “motherboard bundles” that Novatech offer: link to

    They tend to be comparable (perhaps slightly more expensive) to buying motherboard, CPU, and RAM separately, and although they seem to come with some generic unnamed RAM, it’s not exactly expensive to stick some extra or more notable memory in.

    I just recently nabbed myself an i5 3570K bundle from there, stuck in 8GBs of Corsair RAM, plopped in a GTX 770, and I’m wonderfully satisfied with my new-found ability to turn on all the silly, unnecessary, GPU enhanced particle effects gunk in Planetside 2 and not have the game drop down to about 2 fps.

    Not to mention that one of the most fiddly (and easily fuckupable) parts of a self-build is the CPU installation, so it is nice to have it all ready to go out of the box.

  37. ulix says:

    Whiloe this ic certainly cool, and true to a degree, PCs simply cannot match the PS4’s 8GB unified GDDR5 memory. You’d need a Geforce Titan with 6GB graphics memory to come close in that regard. And that alone costs almost one thousand moneys. Of course it is also better in almost every othe regard.

    • Sakkura says:

      PCs can easily match and exceed that. 8 GB DDR3 and 2 GB GDDR5 is a much better combination, since the DDR3 is perfect for CPU usage and GDDR5 is perfect for GPU usage. GDDR5 memory is both a strength AND a handicap for the PS4.

    • Pliqu3011 says:

      Obvious troll is obvious.

  38. Viroso says:

    Is it a good idea to get something now?

    A lot of next-gen games coming out will be made to run on PS3 and 360, either that or will likely be playable on a PC built within the last couple years, maybe at lower than desirable settings but playable nonetheless. Still, there’ll be a lot of games coming for the current gen and there’s that backlog issue we are all dealing with. So what I’m saying is a PC that’s enough to run whatever’s out there at high settings is still good for some time.

    I’d rather wait for prices to go down, for GPUs with more RAM because it seems that’ll matter about as much as shaders and flops and whatnot, for DDR4, for a socket that we know for sure won’t be replaced. Upgrading a PC in 2014 sounds more reasonable then trying to outdo the optimized consoles right now.

    Besides I think this is all very risky. A GPU that’s barely better than the PS4 isn’t enough, we don’t know exactly how good the PS4’s CPU is and going for a cheap PSU is asking for trouble. I mean, is it ever a good idea to get a console on launch? Why should you upgrade your PC like this then?

    • ScubaMonster says:

      If you have a recent CPU you’ll be fine. i5 will be plenty to match the next gen consoles even though they are using 8 cores. The main thing as you say will be the GPU, but I imagine a 660 ti would easily handle everything the new consoles can. But I’d wait on prices to go down a bit, the 700 series is arriving.

    • Rufustan says:

      Waiting is probably the better option.

      On CPUs, if you are already using something in the i5 class or equivalent (is there one?) you should be OK compared to the consoles.

      As far as GPUs go, it is worth waiting on 2 fronts: until the PS4 is released we will not know how effective it is graphically and so how much power we;ll need to compete.

      It also seems sensible to see how effectively and fully the PS4 devs are using their available memory, If it is significant, a wait until the next iteration of AND and Nvidia cards with 4-8 gig (as needed) of GDDR5 are released.

  39. kud13 says:

    For those in the US/Canada who consider building, there are pure hardaware sites like TigerDirect in CA, or NewEgg in the US, that offer so-called “Barebones Kits”–you get a case, PSU, MoBo, CPU, RAM, HDD–everything except decent GPU (Mobo usually has integrated video). If you buy them during the holidays, it’s possible to get great deals.

    I bought mine off Tiger Direct 2 holidays seasons ago. I got a 4-core 2.8 GhZ AMD Phenom, 8 GB of RAM, 1 TB HDD (not SSD, sadly), a decent DVD-ROM, all for about $400. A GEFORCE GT 630 cost me 75 bucks last holiday season–Before I was running a 560, I think? i got a monitor and a copy of Win7 as Xmass gifts, but altogether they’d have set me back another $150, maybe. KB+M are easy–you can get a good price on those anywhere.

    This was a build from 1.5 years ago. I don’t intend to upgrade it for a while, and I don’t think I’ll need to. And I paid maybe $600 for the whole thing? (I also bought speakers during the summer, and a USB Wi-Fi adapter to connect it to the ‘Net)

  40. ScubaMonster says:

    The main reason for consoles though is the console games that will never make it to a PC for one reason or another. And there are quite a few of them. If you don’t enjoy those games, then fine, but there are a lot of games I’d have never been able to play had I been a PC only gamer. That said, buying on day one is probably a bad idea for new consoles.

    • roryok says:

      Buying on day one is a bad idea for PC games too. I bought DX:HR on day one at €50, and by the time I got around to playing it, Amazon had it for €4.99

  41. hampa says:

    After picking that cheap as chips, no-name, no-reputation, possibly dangerous PSU from the bottom of the barrel of eBuyer it’s safe to say that I will never take your advice on hardware and will advise others to look elsewhere.

  42. aircool says:

    When comparing the price of a PC to a console, you have to take into account that a PC CAN DO SO MUCH MOAR!

    I’m still left wondering why, that after all this time, consoles still don’t come with a mouse and keyboard.

  43. The_Great_Skratsby says:

    Quick question to much more knowledgeable people here-

    My 580 recently died (just out of warranty too) so I’m in need of a replacement. Problem is I’m torn between cost and performance.

    Is a 660 ($209 ‘Stralian – affordable) a decent replacement or should I fork out just over twice as much and just go for a new 770 ($460 – gosh expensive)? Or wait for a 760 model (if it’ll ever show up)?

    It’s a real pickle, my computer is utterly useless until it’s fixed – thing won’t boot to the BIOS even, ened up dragging it to a store for a checkup.

    • Sakkura says:

      You could grab a GTX 670 or HD 7870 XT for great value in between the two. Or wait for the GTX 670 to be rebadged as the GTX 760 Ti (presumably).

  44. Metalhead9806 says:

    This wouldnt work… you need at least a PC twice as powerful as the Xbox One or PS4 to ensure you can run games to the end of the generation… even that’s not guaranteed. As developers optimize games for console hardware overtime PCs require more and more power to run games since we dont have the luxury of having one set spec.

    I had a nice duo core PC back when the last gen consoles released, had double the memory, a gpu twice as fast and when Mass Effect 2 released it was a slide show… What RPS is doing in this article is meaningless.

    • InternetBatman says:

      I think that’s a bit hyperbolic. The X-box 360 had a three core 3.2 GHz cpu. Skyrim and DE:HR require a dual core 2ghz system for min specs. Xbox 360 had 512MB graphics ram, as does min specs for Skyrim. The only big difference is RAM, but why worry about future proofing RAM, it’s cheap and easy to upgrade?

      • HadToLogin says:

        Consoles had what, GeForce 7xxx inside? PC games required at least 8800, or even 9xxx to play game instead of slideshow.

    • SuicideKing says:

      This PC is, CPU wise, twice as powerful. Even GPU wise, it’s no pushover.

      Realise that all 176 GB/s for the PS4 won’t be realised due to overheads, and then the CPU will need a bit of it too. Then all the background services, etc.

      Additionally, with games optimized for x86-64 and other ISA extensions, this PC will run circles around either console for quite a while.

  45. honky mcgee says:

    Question for the community:

    Of all the components that you will purchase for your new system which will last the longest?

    A. Motherboard.
    B. RAM
    C. PSU
    D. Fan

    Answer: C —- —– Of all of the above technologies only the PSU is the least changed and most compatible with past and future builds.

  46. lord_strange says:

    The PC is the ONE RING TO RULE THEM ALL. No question. I am still on the first generation of intel’s quad core CPUs, an i920, and overclocked to 3.2 ghz with an nVidia 680 card it is still making light of every game I play. I suspect that glorious run might come to an end later this year (and to be honest I haven’t really tested any 2013 games on it yet, such as Bioshock 3 or Tomb Raider), but I’ve had a good 4+ years out of my current motherboard and CPU and have only upgraded the video card once. I am not at all convinced by the virtues of the PS4 and Xbone although I own both of their predecessors. PC4eva!

    BTW is there anyone else who can’t stop reading ‘Xbone’ as ‘X-bone’ as in ‘give a dog a’?

    • Strangerator says:

      I believe you have the correct and intended pronunciation of X-bone. Except I think rather than a dog’s chew-toy, “bone” is being used as a verb with the recipient of said action being the gaming consumer base.

  47. SuicideKing says:

    Haswll i3s coming soon!

    link to

  48. Strangerator says:

    As I’m still rocking the Core 2 Duo e8400, with an HD Radeon 4800 series card, this article is painfully relevant to me.

    One thing to add might be that neither console has released yet. This means hardware prices may still fall over the next few months whereas the Xbone and PS4 prices and hardware are already locked in. Building your own system has this added advantage of immediacy, since you have the opportunity to pay what things cost on that day.

    I also think this article is somewhat an academic exercise, because if we’re honest with ourselves, none of us are probably going to settle for console-level hardware. We will build our all-powerful gaming machines like we always have, with an eye towards the future, that will allow us to not just play the same games as consoles, but to play them better and prettier.

    I get the strange feeling that Rome: Total War 2 is going to be the game that forces me to upgrade. There’s always that one game that pushes you from “thinking about upgrading” to “serious hardware investigator.” Also I am saving Witcher 2 for a new system because I don’t want to muddy down the graphics. Unless perhaps it’s a game issue that can be fixed with a patch/mod…

  49. F3ck says:

    Most of us here in the states have used TD (Tiger Direct) or NE (NewEgg) in the past for building cheap combo-deals. Sometimes the deals are still okay (better than any rig you’d pick up in, say, Best Buy) but NE has better deals on quality parts and TD has the cheapest combos (of questionable quality, typically shitty PSUs).

    If you’re like me you buy the combo do get legit Win, and at least a couple hardware scores – then build the rest from there as budget allows.

    My $400 (that’s only, like, €50.00 or something) plastic-everything-combo from TD in ’08…is now water-cooled, CM-Storm encased, led-riddled beauty and sexyass paragon of function & form.

  50. Liudeius says:

    “neither the Xbone or the PS4 use an exact match for an existing PC graphics card.”

    Now even writers (What are RPS people? Bloggers? Reporters? Journalists?) are calling it the Xbone?
    I prefer XbOne, it’s classier because, while it’s spelled the same way, the capital breaks the word up some so it’s not immediately read as Xbone.

    Even my laptop is better than the new generation (well I’m not sure about the GPU, better shaders, but far inferior flops, whatever those words mean). Of course it did cost quite a bit more than $500.