Best Gaming Computer for Under $1000

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In this article we are going to talk about the best gaming computer you can buy pre-built for $1000. We will show you how to avoid paying for overpriced gaming desktop PCs and how to spot the best value pre-built packages.

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Hopefully we can take the confusion out of the numbers and simplify the process of buying the best gaming computers for your budget. If you want to play the latest games on the PC market right now, such as Battlefield 3, Crysis 3, Dota 2, but you aren’t sure what you need, continue reading.

The CPU

The first thing to look for is the the CPU. Having a good CPU means more than just buying the CPU with the highest GHz, it’s about how well the CPU can utilize that speed. This means you have to look at other specifications such as the CPU cache (the higher the better), the number of cores and the chipset model.

Best Gaming Computer
Best Gaming Computer

Nowadays, the latest CPUs are fairly affordable except for the ultra high-end models. It’s the year 2013 and quad-cores are now the standard for high performance computers. Make sure you are purchasing a computer that is utilizing the latest chipsets. All modern day CPUs are quite fast and perform very well, just make sure you are not purchasing a low-end CPU model.

There are only two reputable CPU manufacturers, Intel and AMD. Simply head over to their websites and check out the latest models and make sure you are purchasing a computer that is using one of these models.

At the time this article was written the latest core processors were the 3rd generation Intel Core processors (any model number that begins with a 3, eg. i7-3770). To make sure you are buying the best gaming computer you need at least a current generation quad-core processor.

The GPU

The next big piece of hardware to look out for is the graphics card or the GPU (graphics processing unit). This is usually the most expensive piece of hardware inside of a gaming computer. To make sure you are getting the best gaming computer for under $1000, you need to educate yourself about the current GPU market. Here is a list that ranks the latest graphics cards (http://community.futuremark.com/hardware/gpu). It’s a simple list that can be used as a guideline, but if you want more information you should look up benchmarks and comparisons on Google.

Be aware that the latest isn’t always the greatest when it comes to GPUs. The two biggest manufacturers of GPUs are GeForce and ATI (Radeon). Whenever any of these manufacturers release a new line of GPUs they name them in sets. There will be a low-end budget card in each line, a few mid-tier models and then the high-end models.

For example in the latest GeForce 600 Series:

  • Low-end: GeForce 610, GeForce 620, GeForce 630, GeForce 640
  • Middle-tier: GeForce 650, GeForce 660
  • High-end: GeForce 670, GeForce 680, GeForce 690

GPU performance is usually measured in FPS (frames per second) in different games. Review and benchmarking sites will measure how well these cards perform in new games and show the results in FPS (the higher the better). Sometimes the latest models of GPUs may be too expensive for you to purchase but you can buy a older model of GPU that offers almost the same level of performance for cheaper.

At the time this article was written, the best “bang for buck” graphics cards are the Radeon  HD 7770, GeForce 560 GTX and Radeon HD 7850. These cards provide great performance at an affordable price. You may notice some performance issues if you buy anything worse than these cards. The performance of your graphics depends on how much you are willing to spend on your GPU. To get the best gaming computer you should avoid integrated graphics cards and computers that use the low-end budget cards.

The biggest piece of advice we can give regarding GPUs, is to do your research and look up benchmarks and comparisons.

Other Components

Most of the remaining components of the computer are fairly cheap compared to the CPU and GPU. RAM is extremely cheap these days, 8GB of DDR3 RAM is plenty for gaming, you may consider buying more if you do a lot of rendering or run programs that use a lot of memory. Keep in mind, that if you purchase more than 4GB of RAM you need to run a 64-bit OS (operating system) or you won’t be able to use more than 4GB of ram. It’s a mathematical limitation of 32-bit operating systems and even if you have more than 4GB of RAM installed, your computer will only be able to use a fraction of your hardware.

The rest of the budget is spent on parts of the computer that run the PC. Things like the PSU(power supply unit), the case, fan, hard-drive, motherboard (mobo) and DVD drives.

Now that we know what to look for in a pre-built gaming computer, we have compiled a list of the best gaming computers you can buy for under $1000.

1. Avatar Gaming I5K77 [Price: $959.99]

Specifications:

  • CPU: Intel Core i5 3570k (3.40GHz)
  • GPU: Radeon HD 7770
  • RAM: 8GB DDR3
  • HD: 1TB SATA III HD
  • OS: Windows 8 64-bit

This pre-built beast is one of the best gaming desktops you can buy for our price range. It’s using one of the new Intel chipsets and has a Radeon HD 7770. The Radeon HD 7770 is an older GPU that can still run new games fairly well.

You have plenty of hard-drive space to store all your games and files. 8GB of RAM ensures you won’t run into any memory issues and you’ll be running the 64-bit version of Windows 8.

2. Microtel Computer® TI9088 [Price: $999.99]

Specifications:

  • CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition (3.4GHz)
  • GPU: Nvidia GeForce 560 GTX
  • RAM: 16GB DDR3
  • HD: 1TB HD
  • OS: Windows 7 Premium 64-bit (CD included with purchase)

The Microtel TI9088 is a great computer at a great price. With a customer rating of 5 stars out of 5, you know you’re getting a good deal. Customers have also commented about the high quality of customer service, so you know you’ll be looked after if you ever have a problem with your Microtel computer.

3. iBuyPower GAMER POWER AM799 Desktop (Red) [Price: $949.99]

Specifications:

  • CPU: Intel Core i7-3770 (3.4GHz)
  • GPU: Radeon HD 7770
  • RAM: 8GB DDR3
  • HD: 1TB HD
  • OS: Windows 8 64-bit

You’ve probably heard that “red cars go faster”, but did you know red computers run faster? Well, we aren’t a hundred percent sure about that, but the red case is definitely a unique and striking feature about this gaming computer. Running on the new Intel i7-3770 and a Radeon HD 7770 you’ll have all the processing power you need to run the latest games.

Combining power with flair and style, this PC was made for the outspoken gamer.

4. iBuyPower Gamer Extreme AM6100 Desktop [Price: $989.99]

Specifications:

  • CPU: 3.3 GHz FX-Series Six-Core FX-6100
  • GPU: Nvidia GeForce 560 GTX
  • RAM: 8GB DDR3
  • HD: 1TB HD
  • OS: Windows 7 Premium 64-bit

Another great pre-built gaming computer from iBuyPower, the AM6100 runs on 6 cores. This means more processing power which will boost your performance in games and multitasking. Everything else is standard compared to the other gaming computers within this price range. The AM6100 comes in a modern and sleek case, which is much more understated than the bold red of the AM799.

Final Words on Buying the Best Gaming Computer On a Budget

We hope you learnt something about pre-built gaming PCs from our article, and now understand how to decide what is the best gaming computer for your own circumstances. Hopefully you will avoid the mistakes that many other people fall into when it comes to purchasing the best gaming computer on a budget. Do your research, figure out your budget, shop around and compare. It only takes an hour and it could save you hundreds of dollars.

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