If you want the best gaming computer under 1000 dollars you can’t buy a pre-built computer. You MUST find the best components that fit this budget and build the PC yourself.

Ready to play your games at Ultra + 1440p?

Here you will find a detailed guide on how to choose the best parts in order to build the best $1000 gaming computer. You will get a lot of benefits from building your own custom gaming computer and the best part is that you will discover that’s a lot easier than you may think!

This is part of the Best $1000 Gaming PC series. You can find the main post in this link where I talk about the pros & cons of both Ryzen and Intel $1000 builds.

If you see errors, misleading information, or you just don’t agree with me I would really appreciate your comments so we all can improve this post together. Try to be nice to each other and be collaborative.

Benefits Of Being A PC Gamer

I want to encourage you to build your own Gaming PC. You will only get benefits from it!

  • Cheap games
  • Almost every exclusive console game is available PC... sooner or later
  • Free online multiplayer
  • It has the biggest community among all the platforms
  • PC gaming covers almost the 40% of the worldwide gaming market and growing every year
  • You can enjoy awesome mods for your favorite games
  • You can upgrade your PC whenever you want, piece by piece!

I'm very excited to help you build your next gaming machine so you can be part of the PC Master Race! If you ever need any feedback or support regarding your future buy or your current rig, I would be more than happy to connect with you.

Best Intel Budget Gaming PC Build Under $1000

 

You will be able to play all the current and future games at 1080p and Ultra settings at stable 60 FPS as well as at 1440p with ultra settings and 30-45 FPS, depending on the game. Builds within the $750 – $1000 are usually the best investments in terms of quality/durability as you will be able to play the latest games at Ultra settings for the coming four years before you need to upgrade any component. It’s just Amazing, don’t you think?

In my opinion, this is the most worthwhile build you can get. This is all you need to enjoy the cutting-edge technology available while spending a reasonable amount of money.

'UA ELITE 1000 IN OC'

Intel Core i3-8350K Nvidia GTX 1060 6GB
16 GB RAM DDR4 SSD 240 GB
ATX / uATX 316 W
  1. Thermaltake Core G21 Dual Tempered Glass

  2. MSI Z370-A Pro

  3. Intel Core i3-8350K

  4. Cooler Master Hyper D92

  5. Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB DDR4-2666 CL16

  6. Gigabyte GTX 1060 G1 Rev2 6GB

  7. Crucial BX300 240GB – 2017

  8. EVGA 650 GQ

The UA 1000 IN has only one component in common with the previous build (the $800 build), the graphics card. This build improves all the parts that are usually left in the background. So you can expect to get an incredibly reliable and powerful gaming PC that will remain untouched in your room for the next 4 or 5 years.

For this build, I’ve chosen one of the best looking CPU coolers, the Cooler Master Hyper D92, that will keep your overclocked processor healthy and cool. Also, the RAM modules have been upgraded with two 8GB DDR4 2666MHz RAM modules.

As for the power supply, the EVGA 650 GQ is a fully modular, 80+ Gold certified power supply that worths every penny. A high-end PSU is essential when building a computer of this quality. You can’t afford to burn all your rig because of a cheap power supply. Just keep this in mind: the better the PSU, the longer your components will endure and the better overclocking you will get. You will also avoid the annoying electrical sound typical from poor quality PSUs.

Other than that, the CPU has been upgraded to the overclockable Intel Core Coffee Lake i3-8450K, featuring 4 cores (4 threads) at 4GHz. In order to overclock a Coffee Lake CPU, a Z370 motherboard is needed, and the model I’ve chosen for this needs is the MSI Z370-A PRO.

Case – Thermaltake Core G21 Dual Tempered Glass

The Core G21 Tempered Glass Edition is one of the latest Thermaltake gaming PC cases, with an ATX full aluminum chassis and two tempered glass windows.

It supports virtually all kind of PC hardware, including the biggest graphics cards, high-wattage power supplies, and air/liquid cooling solutions.

  • dual 4mm thick tempered glass panels
  • built-in power supply cover for clean cable management
  • excellent expandability and ventilation for high-end gaming configurations
  • GPU max length 410 mm, CPU fan max height of 160 mm, PSU max length of 220 mm
  • dust filters and 2x built-in USB 3.0 ports

It comes with one 120mm rear fan preinstalled. Together with three 120mm or dual 140mm front fan (not included), you can further optimize the system cooling performance for efficient airflow.

What we have here is, in my opinion, of the most beautiful cases you can find within the $60 to $100 price range with features of premium products. You won’t regret it!

Check the Cases Guide to see other models within the same price range.

Motherboard – MSI Z370-A Pro

The MSI Z370-A PRO is a perfect choice if you want an overclockable system (CPU, GPU, RAM), designed to fully utilize the latest Intel Coffee Lake processors, ready to deliver a world-class gaming experience.

It includes several fan headers with full control to allow you to cool your system any way you want.

The core features of this motherboard are:

  • Supports 8th Generation Intel Core, Pentium, and Celeron Processors for Socket LGA 1151
  • Supports DDR4 Memory, up to 4000+(OC) MHz
  • DDR4 Boost: give your DDR4 memory a performance boost
  • Turbo M.2: NVMe support, up to 32 Gb/s using PCI-Express Gen3 x4
  • X-Boost: A Great tool to boost your USB & Storage performance
  • Military Class 5, Guard-Pro: Latest evolution in high-quality components for best protection and efficiency
  • Click BIOS 5: A super easy to use and friendly BIOS interface

MSI PRO Series motherboards are optimized for cryptocurrency mining like Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum and more.

These motherboards come with more PCI expansion slots, perfectly placed so you can install multiple graphics cards simultaneously with ease.

Optimized Power Design and special BIOS options ensure a rock solid system for long mining sessions to maximize efficiency and coin generation.

Check the Motherboards Guide to see other models with the same chipset.

Processor – Intel Core i3-8350K

The Intel Core i3-8350K is a Coffe Lake processor (Intel’s 8th Generation, socket 1551). This is actually the first-ever Intel’s i3 overclocking processor, featuring 4 cores (4 threads) at 4 GHz and the integrated GPU UHD Graphics 630.

It’s worth mentioning that this i3 is as powerful (if not slightly superior) as the Kaby Lake’s i5 7600K, which also has 4 cores / 4 threads with similar clock speeds.

This CPU is powerful enough to run all your games at Ultra settings and stable 60 FPS at 1080p and even 1440p as long as it’s paired with a powerful GPU, like the Nvidia GTX 1060 6GB for example.

I’d recommend this model over the i5-7600K for several reasons:

  • They both have similar performance levels
  • They both are overclockable
  • And what’s best, the i3-8350K can be found $25 to $40 cheaper than the i5-7600K

Check the Processors Guide to see other models within the same price range.

Graphics Card – Gigabyte GTX 1060 G1 Rev2 6GB

Here we have the most versatile graphics card of 2017 to play current games at 1080p + 60 FPS.

The GTX 1060 mounts the GP106 chipset, featuring 1280 CUDA cores, 48 ROPs and 80 TMUs. This is indeed a big step forward compared to its previous version, the GTX 960, which featured 32 ROPs and 64 TMUs.

The Gigabyte GTX 1060 G1 Rev2 6GB compute performance is of 4.4 TFLOPS (remember that this value cannot be directly compared with AMD graphic cards as AMD’s architecture has a higher compute performance but it’s not expressed into a real advantage over Nvidia when tested on video games), with a 192GB/s of total memory bandwidth.

The Base clock of the founder’s edition is 1506 MHz and the Boost clock 1708 MHz, but depending on the manufacturer these values could vary a little.

The power consumption (TDP) of 120W is lower than the 150W of the RX 580 and it is powered by a single 6 pin connector.

  • Base Clock: 1544 MHz / Real Boost Clock: 1759 MHz
  • 6GB GDDR5
  • DX12 OSD Support
  • Max Monitors Supported: 4

Compared to the previous Nvidia generation, the GTX 1060 6GB ($330) is as powerful as the old GTX 980 ($450). And for those who don’t believe it, it has been proved several times under different gaming conditions and hardware configurations.

Compared to the 800 dollars build, which also mounts a 6GB GTX 1060 6GB, this $1000 build is better in every aspect. This GPU in combination with 16GB of RAM and the overclockable CPU will definitely improve the 1440p gaming stability.

Check the Graphics Card Guide to see other models within the same price range.

RAM – Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB DDR4-2666

As for the RAM, it is always a good idea to choose modules of the same frequency and, preferably, in groups of two. That is if you want to install 16GB of RAM, instead of buying a single 16GB module, try to get a 2x 8GB pack.

Note that the RAM memory frequency is of 2666Mhz, and that’s due to a good reason.

The selected RAM frequency is the new standard speed for the latest Intel and AMD processors, so you will be able to exploit its full potential. With former architectures (like Intel Skylake), the limit for non-overclockable motherboards was set to 2133Mhz.

Why shouldn’t I use one single RAM module? Learn all about choosing the best modules in the RAM Guide.

Storage Unit – SSD Crucial BX300 240GB

For builds over $800, I always recommend getting a 240GB SSD, and one of the best-selling models is the Crucial BX300 240GB.

As a best practice, you should prioritize newer models over older ones, as there are durability and reliability improvements year after year.

This model was released in 2017 and it has proved to be one of the best SSD available.

It is fast (555 Mb/s write speed) and pretty durable and the selling price is really competitive.

Do you want to learn more about SSDs and the different options currently available in the market? Read the SSDs Guide.

Power Supply – EVGA 650 GQ

The best option in terms of price/quality ratio for maximum performance and stability on moderate power consuming gaming computers is the EVGA 650 GQ, an 80 PLUS Gold semi-modular unit from one of the most popular hardware manufacturers.

The models from the EVGA’s GQ Series take some of the best features from EVGA’s award-winning, like EVGA ECO fan mode for nearly silent operation, Japanese brand capacitors and a highly efficient design, at an excellent value.

  • 80 PLUS Gold certified, with 90% energy efficiency
  • 0.99 Active Power Factor Correction provides clean and reliable power
  • 5 Year Warranty that’s backed by world-class EVGA support
  • Dimensions: 165mm x 86mm x 150mm

Why are PSUs so important in every computer? Find it out in the Power Supplies Guide.

The Prebuilt Alternative

For those who landed here looking for a gaming computer but don’t have the time to build their own, here you have a similar prebuilt gaming pc.

What are the differences between this prebuilt and the custom pc of this post?

  • The ASUS G11DF has only 8GB of RAM, compared to the 16GB of the custom build
  • The ASUS G11DF uses the Ryzen 5 1400 processor, which is approximately 40% less powerful than the custom build’s Intel i3-8350K
  • The ASUS G11DF includes some of the extras that the custom build doesn’t (extra 1TB HDD, Windows license and DVD drive)

Other than that, it includes the same GPU: the GTX 1060 6GB, and also a pretty cool case.

Don’t Forget About The Peripherals

If you are building a gaming computer from scratch you will probably need a monitor, a keyboard, a mouse, extra storage or even a Windows 10 copy.

'Extras & Peripherals - 1080p 60 Hz'

1080p 75Hz Monitor Non-mechanical Keyboard
USB Wifi Adapter 1TB 7200 rpm HDD

The recommended monitor is the Asus VG245H, released in August 2016. This is just the best 1080p monitor of the moment. It features a TN panel with just 1ms of input lag, FreeSync compatible and a refresh rate of 75 Hz. You can read a mini review here:  Asus VG245H Review – The Best 24″ FHD FreeSync Monitor Under $200.

As for the keyboard and mouse, if you have a tight budget I would recommend you the Coller Master Devastator II combo bundle. For just 30 bucks you get a decent quality keyboard and mouse. The best way to check if a product worth the money is checking the customer reviews. This product has 4 out of 5 stars and +300 customer reviews. You won’t find anything better for this price.

If you want to forget about running short of free space then you should consider the option of getting a standard HDD just to store static data like images, music, torrent downloads, games, etc. Just remember to keep the operating system installed on the SSD to get the fastest performance levels.

How To Build a Computer

There are tons of tutorials and video tutorials out there about how to put together the different PC parts.

The Newegg guys did a great job with a series of video tutorials which I highly recommend.It's an easy process if you follow the process step by step and you will feel like a god when you see that you build your Gaming PC from scratch!

If you have never built a computer before don't worry, I know the idea of putting together all the parts and dealing with all the cables can be overwhelming.

That's OK. If I can do it you can as well.

What would I recommend you is to have a quick look at the following video so you can get an idea of what's this about.

And if you have any questions feel free to comment at the end of this post :)!

Things To Note

  • Nomenclature: the configurations are named according to the used CPU and GPU:
    • IN: Intel CPU, Nvidia GPU
    • AA: AMD CPU, AMD GPU
    • IA: Intel CPU, AMD GPU
    • OC: the configuration is designed for Overclocking.
  • Internal storage: the best option here is to add an SSD exclusively for the Operating System. This will increase the general performance a lot. A second standard HDD can be used to store games and general data.
  • Power supply: the chosen power supplies will give you more than enough room to satisfy the computer needs. The Intel CPU . Nvidia GPU have lower consumption rates. For example, an i3-8350K with a GTX 1060 will consume up to 300W, which is really low. In those cases, the recommended PSU capacity is 450W, so it works under optimal conditions.
  • Component brands: you can be sure that the brands used are first brands only, just the best of the best. There are maybe some of them that don't sound familiar to you but they are still top brands in their respective business sector.
  • You don't need to buy all the build components at the same time: unlike consoles, you can buy the build's components as you could afford them and once you have all the parts start to build it. You can even buy all the parts except the GPU (if you bought an Intel CPU, which includes a basic integrated GPU) and add the dedicated graphics card a couple of months later.

 

How did you find this build? Do you think it can be improved in any way? What would you change? Do you want to go for it but not sure about something?

Comment Below!

Remember that you can use Disqus without signing in!

*Amazon Affiliate Disclaimer: Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated in each product and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on Amazon.com or your Amazon's country specific site at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of the product.

TAGS

Adrian Benavides

I've been always an avid gamer with limited resources. This led me to learn how to build the best gaming computers within tight budgets. Now, I want to share the knowledge I've acquired over the years with the world!

4 thoughts on “Best Gaming PC Under $1000 – ULTRA 1440p – Intel Ed. (May 2018)

  1. Hello Adrian,

    I enjoyed reading your ”Best Gaming PC Under $1000 – ULTRA 1440p – Intel Ed. (Feb 2018)” post.
    I got all the hardware together, but ran into an issue where the CPU is not being recognized. Did you run into issues with this build?
    Any help is appreciated.

    1. What do you mean by that? Can you give more details about what are you experiencing? Does the PC boot? Do you see any error message? Can you enter into the BIOS and check if any CPU info is printed there?

      Make sure you plugged all motherboard cables correctly and that the CPU is correctly attached to the motherboard as well.

      Please let me know about your findings!

      1. I assembled everything without any issues. When I initially powered up the pc all the fans (2 cpu, 1 system) started running, and then the EZ-Debug Led just blinked between the cpu/ram.
        The ram issue got resolved, but the cpu LED is still on.

        I connected the 8 pin end of the cpu cable to the psu, and the 2×4 pin end to the motherboard.

        Since then I replaced the cpu, motherboard, and psu, and the pc still will not run.

        I am at a loss. What am I missing? Any help and suggestions are welcomed. I hope I can resolve this issue with your help.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *