Best Gaming PC Build For Under $1500 (2020 Guide)

Here, we have some of the most powerful components to make the best gaming PC build under $1500 dollars on the internet.

Not everyone has a lot of time to learn about gaming builds so we created this high-end gaming PC build for anyone to use as a guide for making an awesome gaming PC. Not only will you get a powerful build, but also a gaming PC that will last you for a really (and we mean really) long time.

This build is for people who love gaming a great deal and know that they want to invest this kind of money into a build.

This build would also make a great 2k gaming PC build for anyone who is looking for a build like that. There’s really no reason to worry about performance and you are truly in for a premium gaming experience.

We also have a bunch of other gaming PC configurations, so check out our other PC gaming builds here.

You’re probably ready to get to the build, so let’s jump right in!

Comparison Chart of the Best Gaming PC Builds For Under $1500

PRODUCTDETAILS
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Rosewill V500 Red Mid Tower ATX Case

  • 4 x 120mm dual ring LED fans
  • Tempered glass panels (x3)
  • Cullinan V500 for extended motherboard compatibility
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EVGA SuperNOVA 650 G2

  • 140mm dual ball bearing fans
  • 7 year warranty
  • Improved performance capabilities
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GeForce RTX 2070 8 GB WINDFORCE

  • GeForce RTX 2070
  • NVIDIA Turing architectire
  • Windforce 3X cooling system
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Intel Core i7-8700K 3.7 GHz 6-Core Processor

  • Designed with 6 cores/12 threads
  • Intel Optane memory compatible
  • Intel UHD Graphics 630
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EVGA CLC 280mm All-In-One RGB Liquid Cooler

  • 280mm dual fan radiator
  • Customizable RGB LED lighting
  • EVGA fan helps reduce noise
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MSI Z370-A Pro

  • Intel Z370 Express chipset
  • Speeds up to 32GB/s
  • Maximized overclocking capabilities
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Corsair Vengeance 16GB Kit

  • Perfect for high performance overclocking
  • Designed with a low profile heat spreader
  • 2133MHz SPD speed
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Seagate Firecuda SSHD 1TB

  • Hybrid hard drive for enhanced speeds
  • Low power consumption
  • Stores up to 80 games
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Samsung 860 VO 500GB

  • Premium quality read and write speed
  • Secure encrytion system
  • 5 year warranty
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Why Should You Build a Gaming PC Instead of Buying a Pre-Built One?

There are so many reasons to build your own gaming PC, but the biggest one would have to be the cost. Pre-built PC makers love to target people who have expensive budgets for gaming PCs because they know most people don’t know what actually matters in a PC.

What they usually do is put on a very unique looking case (which doesn’t mean anything when it comes to performance) and add some cheap specs (most important part of the build). What they are basically doing is faking people out and taking in a huge amount of profits and leaving you with a build that’s worth considerably less. 

Not everyone wants to build their own PC and really that’s fine, but if you come to this website wewant you to know that you are most likely going to get ripped off if you go the pre-built route. We're not saying all PC makers are ripping you off, but we guarantee that your PC will be much better if you just build your own. This is really simple when you think about it, as the only way they can make money is selling it for more than what the parts are worth. This means your $1500 gets you a lot less.

There seems to be this misconception that building a gaming PC is a difficult task that only the super tech-savvy can do, but that’s the furthest thing from the truth. Really, with so many helpful videos and tutorials online, anyone who spends just a little bit of time learning how to build a PC, can do it.

Now that we've talked about why you should build your own gaming PC, we're going to show you how to build it!

The Best Gaming PC Build Under $1500 Dollars: The Terminator

This build is called “The Terminator” because it will completely destroy any games that come its way for years to come. In this build, you will be getting specs that are some of the best you can buy. One other thing about this build is that it has a lot of upgrade paths to really give you the option to take this build wherever you want.

If you want to go SLI (two graphics cards), then you have the option to do that with this build, but it’s definitely not something you have to do.

The purpose of this build was to allow you to play 2k games at 60 fps for years to come, but if needed, this build is also very viable for 4k gaming. Games should run at 60 fps at 4k fine, but in the future, you might experience frame rate dips (still can easily get years out of this build). If you are looking for the best 4k build, please check out our $2000 build, as that thing is really optimized for 4k.

Not only is this build good for playing games, but it’s also good at making them. With “The Terminator”, you have the power to do so much more than just play games.

The Build

Case - Rosewill V500 Red Mid Tower ATX Case

An Incredibly Stylish Case That All Your Friends Will Envy And Coincidentally, Also Has Great Airflow

Rosewill ATX Mid Tower Gaming PC...

Power Supply - EVGA SuperNOVA 650 G2

A Really High-Quality 80+ GOLD 650W Power Supply That Should Sufficiently Power The Build

EVGA SuperNOVA 220-G2-0650-Y1, 650 G2,...

Graphics Card/GPU – Gigabyte – GeForce RTX 2070 8 GB WINDFORCE

A Complete Monster That Can Even Handle 2k and 4k Gaming With Ease!

Gigabyte GeForce RTX 2070 Windforce 8G...

CPU – Intel Core i7-8700K 3.7 GHz 6-Core Processor

A Pretty Awesome CPU That Can Easily Handle Most CPU-Related Activities and Overclock!

Intel Core i7-8700K Desktop Processor 6...

EVGA CLC 280mm All-In-One RGB Liquid Cooler

Keeps Your CPU Very Cool, Even When Overclocking.

SALEEVGA CLC 280mm All-In-One RGB LED CPU...

Motherboard - MSI Z370-A Pro

DDR4, LGA 1151, SLI Support, Houses Everything

SALEMSI PRO Series Intel 8th Gen LGA 1151...

RAM - Corsair Vengeance 16GB Kit

Two 8 GB Sticks Of DDR4 3000MHz RAM

Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB (2x8GB) DDR4...

Hard Drive - Seagate Firecuda SSHD 1TB

A Very Reliable Hard Drive, 7200RPM

SALESeagate FireCuda 1TB Solid State Hybrid...

SSD - Samsung 860 VO 500GB

Not mandatory, but if you want a snappier OS, we recommend getting one.

SALESamsung 860 EVO 500GB 2.5 Inch SATA III...

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Build Breakdown

Case

The case for this build is the Rosewill V500 Red Mid-Tower Case. Not only does the case look cool, but it’s also very affordable, which is good, as you can put the majority of your money toward the components that will allow you to run games.

The case comes with two USB 3.0 and 2.0 ports in the front, which is good for the price range and also comes with one audio port. Honestly, when it comes to cases, the most important thing is, can it house everything? And the answer is, yes, it can.

This is a mid-tower case, so it’s nothing huge, but it has excellent airflow (which is crucial to keeping your build cool) and has five internal bays, (can include SSDs and hard drives) which is more than enough for most people.  If you are okay with a smaller case that is pretty stylish at a good price, then this is definitely for you.

Not everyone is going to want this case (for whatever reasons), so we have included a link below that will allow you to find other cases that should be compatible with this build. This case also doesn’t allow for the use of an optical drive, so if that’s something you’re thinking of getting, you should check out another case.

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Power Supply

When it comes to amazing power supplies, there are few better than the ones made by EVGA, and their SuperNOVA 650 G2 power supply doesn’t disappoint. Most people don’t seem to understand how important a power supply is and tend to try to cheap out in this area, but a good power supply (especially for a build in this price range) is vital.
Trying to cheap out and get a low-quality power supply can end up damaging other more expensive components in the future, and costing you much more, as it consumes a lot of energy. The EVGA SuperNOVA 650 is probably one of the best you can buy and can easily handle this build with power to spare.
This power supply is also modular, which will save you so much time and makes installing the power supply clean and easy, as you can pick and choose which things you actually need. The Super Nova is a gold-rated power supply, meaning has been tested and confirmed to be very efficient, which will save you money in the long run, as it consumes less power.
Oh yeah, another benefit is the ten-year warranty on it, which is almost unheard of! If you ever do have issues with this power supply, they can be resolved quickly and efficiently. All in all, this power supply makes a great addition to this gaming build and will last you for a long time.

Video Card

For gaming, the Gigabyte RTX 2070 8 GB Video Card is the most important element of this build and it’s literally one of the best graphics cards you can get at the moment. Unlike most of Nvidia’s cards which only utilize 4 GB of VRAM, this card has 8 GBs, which is complete overkill at the moment, but will definitely last you a long time in the future.​
We can’t imagine you needing another card for years, especially if you are only going for 1080p or 2k  gaming. So, if that’s all you need to know, you can go on to the next part of the build.

As you can see, this isn’t just the regular RTX 2070, but the one that’s been customized by Gigabyte and with that comes a host of features. There are a lot of different features that Gigabyte brings to this card, but the most important one would have to be the Gigabyte 2070’s memory clock speed. Coming in at 1620 MHz, this card is perfect for people who want something that will perform at a high level, right out of the box.  

The other cool feature Gigabyte brings to the table is their awesome cooling technology. One of the worst things you can have is a noisy and hot video card and since this tech basically makes your card almost impossible to hear even when it’s overclocked along with cooling it more efficiently than the stock one, there really is no reason to not go with it.

CPU

If you haven’t heard, Intel recently released their 8th generation processors also known as “Coffee Lake.” The i7-8700k is one of the best CPUs you can get when it comes to gaming, and it will make an excellent sidekick to the GTX 2070.
This is a quad-core processor that is very powerful and will tear through any CPU-intensive game out there. Honestly, any processing for years to come can easily be handled by this CPU. Pairing this CPU with the Giant 1080 will make sure there is no bottleneck for your 2070.
Unlike most of Intel’s processors, this one is unlocked, which will allow you to overclock the 8700k, pushing even better performance. Its stock speeds are at 4.2 GHz, but you can easily overclock it to 4.5-4.7 GHz with a good CPU fan. For most, though, you won't even have to worry about overclocking a CPU until much later in the future when you start to see your performance drop.

CPU Cooler

The i7-8700k  does not come with a stock cooler, which is why we included this amazing CPU cooler from Cooler Master, the EVGA 280 MM Liquid Cooler fan. When looking for a fan for the i7-8700k, we wanted something that was high quality, but also wasn’t too expensive and ended up settling on this liquid cooler. The most important thing is that it will keep the i7-8700k cool without a doubt, and all for an affordable price. If you were considering overclocking, then this is perfect. There’s not much else to say about this, except that it will allow you to draw the full potential out of the CPU and not have to worry about any overheating issues.

Motherboard

The motherboard for this build is MSI Z370 Pro ATX Motherboard. This motherboard will last you a long time, and we would honestly be surprised if you had any issues with it. This is a DDR4 motherboard, which basically means it will be a little bit faster than your typical DDR3 Mobo.
One of the main reasons we picked this motherboard was because it supported Nvidia SLI gaming, which is important because if you ever want to use two graphics cards with this build, you now have that option. It costs a little bit more, but it’s definitely worth it in the long run.
The other reason we chose this motherboard was because of MSI’s awesome BIOS. MSI specializes in making computer hardware for gaming and with it, you will be able to easily overclock all of your gaming build components and control almost every aspect about your PC .
For most, this might sound intimidating, but MSI actually has an easy mode which basically simplifies the process and allows you to do many things without getting too technical.
Note: This board is compatible with Intel 8th generation CPU’s right out of the gate!

RAM

While 8 GBs is enough for gaming at the moment, to future-proof this build, we've included 16 GBs (2 X 8 GBs) of RAM. The RAM we chose was Corsair's LPX Vengeance. Just to give you an example of what 16 GBs of RAM is capable of, we have provided an example. With 16 GBs, you can play games at max resolution and stream yourself playing without any lag at all!
With so much RAM, you may suffer from diminishing returns. but when you’ve decided to spend so much money on a PC, you might as well get the best.

Hard Drive

The hard drive for this build was the Seagate 1 TB Firecuda Solid State Hard Drive. There’s not much to say about this hard drive, except that it holds data and is probably the best in its price range.

You get decent load speeds with this hard drive, but it’s nothing compared to a true SSD. Overall though, for all of your general storage, this works just fine. If you have a little more money to spend then get the 2 TB version, as it is a lot bigger for a bit more money.

Many people might think they need more space, but unless you are downloading many GBs per day, this is more than enough to easily last you a year. You also get a two-year warranty, which is always handy if you have any technical issues.

SSD

This is the first build where we've included an SSD. While SSDs aren’t mandatory, they are definitely very useful because they allow you to put your most used applications on it, offering snappy load times unheard of with a hard drive.
The SSD for this build is the Samsung EVO 500GB SSD. It’s not the biggest SSD, but it will house all of your most used apps and will easily cut your load times in half.
One thing to seriously consider is to install your operating system on your SSD. This will make your whole PC load so much faster. The sad thing is you won’t be able to get any snacks while your PC is starting up anymore because everything will load so fast.

Seagate Firecuda SSHD 1TB

(Optional) Optical Drive

We didn’t include an optical drive (CD Drive) in this build because it is really not important to gaming builds any longer. Almost everything can be downloaded digitally, and you could definitely use the extra space for cable management.
However, some people may want an optical drive, so here is a post on the best optical drives available.

Build Conclusion

This is probably the longest build breakdown, but when you are spending so much money on a build, we want you to know as much as you possibly can about what you are buying. For gaming, this build is more than enough and you will be playing on ultra settings for a long time.

Honestly, if you are going to game 1080p, this build is complete overkill and you might want to go with one of our $1000 Builds, but if you are looking for a good 2k/4k build, this should handle those resolutions pretty well.

Recommended Peripherals

It doesn’t matter how awesome the PC you just built is, if you don’t have the right peripherals (accessories), it really handicaps your build. Fortunately, we've included a list of peripherals that all complement this build nicely and will really help complete this build.

Recommended Monitor: Acer G257HU 25-inch 2k Widescreen Monitor

Acer G257HU smidpx 25-Inch WQHD (2560 x...
  • The stunning 25" display with 2560 x 1440 resolution delivers excellent detail, making it...
  • With DVI & HDMI inputs so you can easily power and extend the enjoyment from your smartphone or...

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Acer makes some of the most high-quality, affordable products you can find, and the Acer G257HU 2k monitor is definitely a prime example of that. Considering that nothing can compete with this thing in its price range, there really isn’t anything to compare it to. 

You will be able to game at 2k, but one of the things that really sets this monitor apart is its 4 ms response times, which makes for very smooth gaming. The only complaint with this monitor is that the stand is kind of lackluster, but considering the bargain price, it’s not that big of a deal.

Recommended Keyboard and Mouse Combo: Redragon K552-BA

Redragon K552-BA Mechanical Gaming...
  • GAMING MOUSE, MECHANICAL KEYBOARD and GAMING MOUSE PAD COMBO: Includes Redragon Premium Large...
  • LED BACKLIT GAMING KEYBOARD: Redragon K552 KUMARA Gaming Keyboard 10 RED LED Backlighting...

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Most people seem to think they need to get some super-expensive keyboard and mouse in order to game competitively, but the Redragon S101’s keyboard/mouse combo is really all you will need for gaming.

The keyboard is very responsive and has great feedback, and even though it’s a membrane keyboard, it sometimes feels very reminiscent of a mechanical one. The mouse has three different DPI levels; 1000,1600, and 2000. DPI refers to how sensitive a mouse is, so having different options is definitely useful. This combo set provides so much value, we recommend it for any gamer.

Recommended Headset: Kingston HyperX Cloud II Gaming Headset

HyperX Cloud II - Gaming Headset, 7.1...
  • Designed for comfort – Exceptionally comfortable memory foam ear cushions and padded...
  • Supreme audio quality - Large 53mm drivers provide high-quality audio. Hear in-game details...

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The HyperX Clouds are our number one pick for gaming headsets under $50 dollars. Not only do they look fantastic and much more expensive than they actually are, but they also sound just as great.

One of the biggest things with this headset would have to be its extreme bass. Most headsets struggle with it, but that’s where the Clouds shine. There’s nothing more exciting than hearing those awesome reverberating explosions and ominous soundtracks with these on. These are also noise cancelling, so you can really get in the zone when gaming. The mic is probably the weakest part of this headset, but even that is good.

Another thing that is important about the Clouds is they are super-durable, due to their design. These will easily last for years.

Operating System Options

Once you’ve built your gaming PC and have the peripherals, there is still one thing you need to do before being able to start gaming and that’s to install an OS (Operating System).

What’s an operating system? Basically, it is just a major application that runs and manages all of your other applications. There are thousands of different OSs, but the ones that are viable for PC gaming and available to you are Linux (Ubuntu) and Windows. Both of these operating systems have their strengths and weaknesses ,and below we give you a brief summary of why you should go with one or the other.

Linux (Ubuntu)

Operating systems come and go, but Linux seems to be one of the only open project OSs to really gain any staying power. With many operating systems being designed, such as the new Steam OS. At this time, we recommend Ubuntu. Ubuntu Linux is a more streamlined version of Linux and will definitely be a good OS for someone who isn’t adept with Linux.

There are many reasons to get Linux, but the first would have to be the amazing customization it offers. Unlike Windows, Linux lets you customize everything about the OS. So, in a way, it can feel like you are just using Linux as a base and creating your own unique OS. The other major plus is that Linux is completely free, which makes it a great option for someone who is strapped for cash.
Linux’s greatest blessing is also its greatest curse. Since Linux is so customizable, it can be very confusing to someone who isn’t very tech-savvy. Another issue with Linux is that bugs take a while to get ironed out, as it isn’t a company like Windows. The biggest issue with Linux however, would have to be that not all PC games are optimized for Linux. This means games will run worse on your PC running Linux then if it was running Windows. Slowly, Linux is starting to get more titles fully optimized for it, but this is just something you should know.

Windows

Windows will definitely be the go-to choice for most PC gamers, and there are many reasons for that. We're sure everyone reading this has heard about Windows, so let’s get right to the pros and cons.

Windows is the biggest OS, being on around 75% of all PCs, and as a result, every game that comes to PC is made primarily for this OS. As a gamer, this is major, as we want the best performance we can possibly get. Windows is also better at rolling out updates than Linux due to it being a company.

The only major issue with Windows is that it’s expensive. If you buy a copy of Windows, it’s going to cost you about $100. 

What Version of Windows to Get?

Since Windows has so many different versions, this can be really confusing, but we recommend you go with Windows 10. Windows 10 now offers performance increases in many games and also features you just don’t get with Windows 7 or 8, making it our sole recommendation for people building their own gaming PC.

Below, we've included both the USB version of Windows 10 and the disc version. Both work just fine so it all comes down to whether you have an optical drive or not.

Conclusion

Honestly when you are building the best gaming PC build under $1500 dollars, there really isn’t much to worry about. Not only is “The Terminator” a powerful gaming machine, but it also has enough computing power to do other things such as making games, streaming, and a host of other things for people who are trying to take their love for gaming to the next level.

Without a doubt, we recommend this PC to any gaming enthusiast and anyone who gets this will be one happy gamer.