Build a gaming PC for the price of a PlayStation 5

South Africans who prefer PC gaming could build an entry-level machine for the same price as a PS5 or Xbox Series X.

Both consoles retail for around R11,999 online without any extras.

MyBroadband researched what kind of gaming PC we could build for R11,999 in South Africa.

We obtained component prices using Wootware and Progenix.

Although we went a little over budget, our build didn’t include a disk drive or peripherals like a mouse and keyboard. It also has no monitor or headphones, but no console either.

PC gamers tend to spend the most money on their graphics processing unit (GPU), as it plays such a huge role in gaming performance.

We opted for an ASUS GeForce GTX 1650 TUF Gaming OC edition graphics card for this version.

It has 4GB of VRAM and a core clock of 1590MHz which has been overclocked to 1785MHz, supporting a maximum resolution of 7680×4320 at 60Hz.

However, if you are slightly over budget, a Radeon RX 6600 is a much better choice.

Progenix has a Gigabyte Radeon RX 6600 EAGLE 8G for R5,131, which would bring the total build cost to between R12,302 and R12,380.

Considering Sony will increase the price of the PlayStation 5 in South Africa, a build with this graphics card could soon be in the budget.

For CPU and motherboard, gamers can choose between Intel and AMD while staying within budget.

For those who prefer Intel, we selected the Core i3-12100F processor and the Gigabyte Gigabyte H610M H.

The 12th generation i3-12100F has a base clock of 3.30 GHz, which jumps to 4.30 GHz when needed.

It has four performance cores and supports DDR5 RAM if you pair it with the right motherboard.

If you’d rather go with AMD, we paired the Asus Prime A520M-K micro ATX motherboard with AMD’s Ryzen 5 4500 processor.

Although Intel’s i3-12100 has better single-core performance than the Ryzen 5 4500, AMD’s processor has more cores.

The six-core Ryzen processor is best suited for users who also plan to use their PC for productivity workloads like rendering and video encoding.

We didn’t go with aftermarket cooling because the stock coolers included with these processors are acceptable.

Since both motherboards are micro ATX, we chose Thermaltake’s Versa H15 mini-tower micro ATX case.

The case includes a 120mm fan and users can add 120mm Deepcool fans if they deem necessary for R67 one piece from Progenix.

Regarding the RAM, two 8 GB Adata XPG Gammix D20 3200MHz should be enough for a gaming-oriented desktop PC.

While 12th Gen Intel chips can get a slight improvement in gaming performance using DDR5 RAM, these memory modules are still very expensive.

For storage, we chose Crucial’s 500GB NVMe P2 M.2 SSD. There are several affordable 1TB SSDs available if you want to add more storage for your game library, but that would push the build beyond the budget.

When it comes to power, Cooler Master’s Elite V3 Series 80 Plus 600W White Power Supply provides plenty of headroom for the components running in this system.

These components give you a gaming desktop capable of playing several high-end games at 1080p while maintaining 60 frames per second, depending on the title and graphics settings.

If you own a 4K TV and have already invested in a library of Xbox or PS4 games, a PS5 or Xbox Series X would be a better choice.

A PC is best if you need a versatile machine that goes beyond gaming and offers more flexibility. PC games also tend to be cheaper in the long run.

The table below shows the components and their prices.

Making up Product Name Price
Case Thermaltake Versa H15 Mini Tower Micro ATX Case – Black R656
power supply Cooler Master Elite 230V V3 80 PLUS Series 600W White ATX Power Supply R642
Motherboard Intel — Gigabyte H610M H DDR4, Intel H610 chipset, LGA1700, DDR4, Micro ATX desktop motherboard R1,638
AMD — Asus Prime A520M-K, AMD A520 chipset, socket AM4, Micro ATX desktop motherboard R1,165
CPU Intel Core i3-12100F 4-core processor with HyperThreading, no integrated graphics, LGA1700, 3.3 GHz (4.3 GHz Turbo)
R2,221
AMD Ryzen 5 4500 Hex Core Processor with SMT, Unlocked Multiplier, Socket AM4, 3.6 GHz (4.1 GHz Boost) R2,772
RAM 2 ADATA XPG GAMMIX D20 8GB DDR4 DRAM 3200MHz CL16 memory modules R1,206
GPUs ASUS GeForce GTX 1650 TUF GAMING OC Edition Graphics Card, 4GB R4,360
Gigabyte Radeon RX 6600 EAGLE 8G (much better option, slightly overbudget) R5,131
Storage Crucial P2 PCIe Gen3x4 M.2 2280 NVMe SSD — 500 GB R808
Total R11,531 / R11,609

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Robert P. Miller