Best Gaming PC Under $1000 - ULTRA 1080p, 60FPS! - Intel Ed. (Feb 2019)

Adrian B Updated on Oct 19, 2018

budget-build-1000-intelIf 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.

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.

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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

Thermaltake Core G21 Dual Tempered Glass

Thermaltake Core G21 Dual Tempered Glasslaunch

chevron_right8.2 x 18.7 x 18.5 inches
chevron_right2x USB 3.0, GPU max length 410 mm, CPU fan max height of 160 mm, PSU max length of 220 mm
Market Price: $67.99
Available on:
Amazon USA

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!

Motherboard – MSI Z370-A Pro

MSI Z370-A Pro

MSI Z370-A Prolaunch

chevron_rightSocket LGA-1151
chevron_rightChipset Intel Z Series
chevron_rightRAM DDR4 4000 (O.C.)
chevron_rightRealtek ALC892
chevron_right1x M.2, 4x USB 3.1, 4x USB 2.0, 6x SATA3, 5x fan headers, water pump support, 2-Way AMD CrossFire
Market Price: $111.62
Available on:
Amazon USA

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.

Processor – Intel Core i3-8350K

Intel Core i3-8350K

Intel Core i3-8350Klaunch

chevron_right4 cores (4 threads) at 4 GHz
chevron_rightSocket LGA-1151
chevron_rightUHD Graphics 630
chevron_rightCPU Coffee Lake
chevron_right91 W
Market Price: $196.49
Available on:
Amazon USA

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

Graphics Card – Gigabyte GTX 1060 G1 Rev2 6GB

Gigabyte GTX 1060 G1 Rev2 6GB

Gigabyte GTX 1060 G1 Rev2 6GBlaunch

chevron_right1620 MHz / 1847 MHz
chevron_right6GB GDDR5
chevron_right120 W
Market Price: $341.89
Available on:
Amazon USA

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 1080p and 1440p gaming stability.

RAM – Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB DDR4-2666

Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB DDR4-2666

Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB DDR4-2666launch

chevron_right16GB (2x 8GB)
chevron_right2666 MHz
chevron_rightXMP Profile (2133MHz, CL 15-15-15 w/o XMP)
Market Price: $104.99
Available on:
Amazon USA

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.

Storage Unit – SSD Crucial BX300 240GB

SSD Crucial BX300 240GB

SSD Crucial BX300 240GBlaunch

chevron_right55 TB
chevron_right555 MB/s
chevron_right510 MB/s
chevron_right45k IOPS
chevron_right90k IOPS
chevron_right0.075W / 5.2W
Market Price: $134.99
Available on:
Amazon USA

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.

Power Supply – EVGA 650 GQ


EVGA 650 GQlaunch

chevron_right650 W
chevron_rightPSU Cert - Gold
chevron_right4x 6+2 pin
chevron_rightOVP, UVP, OCP, OPP, SCP, OTP
Market Price: $93.00
Available on:
Amazon USA

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

What To Do Next

Now that you have the hardware parts list, the next steps would be figuring out what peripherals do you need (if any) and how to putt all the parts together. Here you have some posts to keep reading on these matters:


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!
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