We’ve updated our $400 build with a fantastic AMD Ryzen APU, a processor with integrated graphics. While the new generation of Ryzen chips has been released, the older ones still offer better price to performance and make sense in a build at this price. We’ve also updated our prebuilt computer recommendations, bringing you fantastic value for those who prefer to purchase rather than build.
With the 400 dollar gaming PC our main focus was to give excellent value for money whilst still providing a decent level of gaming performance. While we aren’t at the price range where value is at its absolute best, we have enough wiggle room in the budget to make 1080p gaming quite playable. While this may not be our cheapest gaming PC build, it’s still extremely affordable with a slightly stronger processor and graphical power.
We consider this build as being entry-level for both performance standards and build difficulty making it the perfect gateway into PC building, so let’s dive straight in.
Before we explore the hardware specs in more detail and why we chose them, let’s take a quick look at the build as a whole and precisely what it has to offer. We’ll discuss how we managed to stick to $400, some of the compromises that came up during the hardware selection process, and how it performs on a day-to-day basis.
Watch Our Best $400 Gaming PC Build
What Do You Get For Your $400?
One of the biggest struggles we encountered when putting this build together, was sticking to that strict price of $400. Luckily for us, AMD APUs undercut their Intel rivals.
Like many price-conscious custom builds, the aesthetics were compromised for increased performance. The case is pretty basic but still offers some RGB and a user-friendly design.
At this price range, you need to be realistic with what performance you expect to achieve. For us, we focused on designing a build that can achieve 900p-1080p gaming, that is tailored towards low-intensive games such as CS: GO, Fortnite, and Overwatch. The APU should be able to churn out 60+FPS on these games on low-medium settings.
If you’re new to PC building, then you’re probably a little confused at this point, especially with all the abbreviations we’re throwing around. So, let’s discuss the most important aspect of this build, the APU.
An APU, in layman’s terms, is a CPU and a GPU rolled into one. Yes, that’s the reason why this build doesn’t have a graphics card. Over the years, integrated graphics have become increasingly powerful. The VEGA 11 graphics that the 3400G comes equipped with has performance that lies somewhere between the GTX 1030 and the GTX 1050.
The great thing about these APUs is that you can upgrade to a more powerful standalone GPU down the line, and still have a powerful multi-core processor at your disposal. It truly is the best of both worlds.
How We Choose
Our team has years of experience behind them building PCs for a range of needs and budgetary requirements. All this knowledge combined with hours of research, user feedback, and onsite benchmarking is what goes into choosing the best components for our builds.
We look for value for money, how the components perform together, and focus on gamer’s needs to make sure our builds are the best bang for your buck.
We build all these PCs ourselves, in-house, so trust us when we say we want to make them as good as possible. We actually use all these builds ourselves day-to-day in the WePC offices.
How We Test
We build each of our selected PC’s from scratch to make sure all the parts we recommend work well together, fit into the selected case, and provide the best performance possible for the price range.
Once built, the PC’s are used in the office for everyday work as well as a range of games from light to heavy-duty. While we test, we also run benchmarking tests to see how well our builds perform, all while keeping an eye on the temperature of the components themselves.
We tested our AMD builds against their Intel counterparts and found that these CPU’s performed better across the board, and for a lower price. This is why we only recommend an AMD version.
NOTE: Due to the ongoing effects of the global coronavirus pandemic, some retailers are experiencing stock issues. WePC constantly updates our pages to reflect current availability, so if the PC or part you want shows as out of stock, check back later or check out these alternatives.
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