With the best budget gaming PCs, you don’t have to drop three months’ salary to do some serious gaming. Thanks to powerful components like Intel’s Coffee Lake Refresh, AMD Ryzen 3nd Generation and AMD Navi all vying for consumers’ attention, there are more affordable internals than ever before. And, these allow manufacturers to build cheaper PCs for gamers on a budget.
While the best budget gaming PCs might not reach the vaunted heights of the best gaming PCs, these budget battle stations can still deliver a great gaming experience without breaking the bank. These PCs might skip a lot of the premium features, but that’s only because they’re saving the firepower where it counts. That means that they’re more than capable of tackling the latest and greatest from your Steam collection.
We’ve used our expertise to find the best budget gaming PCs of 2020 for you. Our picks are light on the pocketbook and still able to deliver on the goods. In fact, you might just forget about your PS4 Pro or Xbox One X, with all the PC gaming in your future.
1. HP Omen 25L
CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3500, 7 3700X or 9 3900 | Graphics: AMD Radeon RX 5500 – NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 Super | RAM: 16GB – 32B DDR4 | Storage: 256GB SSD – 1TB + 2TB + 2TB
The HP Omen 25L’s rectangular black metal design isn’t going to turn heads anytime soon. That’s at least offset by its glass panel, but only barely. However, if you’re not too concerned about looks, this is among the best budget gaming PCs to hit the shelves in 2020 that won’t make a sizable dent in your bank account. With AMD configurations on hand, it’s perfect for AMD-leaning gamers. But, those that are loyal to Nvidia’s RTX line can partake as well, as you can configure it to have up to an RTX 2070 Super GPU. Still, it’s the price we can’t get over here – kitted out, the HP OMEN 25L costs as much as many of the premium gaming PCs in their mid-range configuration. Only, this one’s got more memory and a lot more storage capacity.
2. MSI Trident 3 9th
CPU: up to 9th-generation Intel Core i7 | Graphics: up to Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060 Super | RAM: up to 16GB | Storage: up to 1TB
Lots of power
Come with bloated software
If looking good matters to you as much as power, then you might love the MSI Trident 3 9th, especially if you’re partial to a gaming-leaning aesthetic. It’s not all looks either. This small gaming PC touts plenty of power under the hood for less than its rivals, with 9th-generation Intel Core processors and the best Nvidia RTX and GTX graphics. It’s even cheaper than many of the gaming PCs on this list, with its Intel Core i7 + RTX 2060 Super +16GB RAM configuration setting you back much less than a HP Omen 25L with equivalent specs. If you’re trying to maximize your limited space and budget, this is the best budget gaming PC for you.
3. Dell G5
Budget PC gaming at its best
CPU: 9th Gen Intel Core i3-9100 – i9 9900K | Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 – RTX 2070 | RAM: 8GB – 64GB | Storage: 1TBSSD – 1TB SSD + 2TB HDD
Base models won’t get you through the most demanding games
A unique chassis coupled with a price to beat, Dell’s latest in its G series gaming PCs is a solid contender as among the best budget gaming PCs out there. The Dell G5 boasts 9th-generation Intel chips as well as Nvidia’s most powerful gaming GTX and RTX graphics cards, starting with an i3 processor and the GTX 1650 to handle many powerful games without burning a whole in your pocket. Of course, if you’ve got more case to spare, its VR ready configurations are also on hand, though even those are absolutely affordable.
4. HP Omen Obelisk
Tricked out stunner for the hardcore gamer
CPU: Intel Core i5-8400 – i9-9900 | Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 Ti – RTX 2080 | RAM: Up to 32GB | Storage: 1TB HDD – 1TB SSD
Lots of power
Appealing, tool-less design
Software offer minimal personalization
The HP Omen line’s more affordable PC, the HP Omen Obelisk, is definitely well-deserving of the best budget gaming PC title, thanks to its low price of admission well under $1,000 and its decent specs at that configuration. And, if you customize before you buy, upgrading the base specs for more power, it won’t set you back a whole lot either. The best part? If you’re not into that over-the-top gaming aesthetic, this one has a classier-looking chassis so you can haul it to your office desk, and no one will be the wiser.
Read the full review: HP Omen Obelisk
5. Intel Ghost Canyon NUC
CPU: 9th-generation Intel Core i5 – i9 | Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 630 | RAM: 8GB – 64B DDR4 | Storage: 128GB SSD – 2TB + 2TB
Affordable at its low configurations
Can get pretty pricey at the highest configurations
Intel’s NUC has come a long way from its humble beginnings. For example, while the previous Hades Canyon didn’t come with a RAM or storage, the newer Ghost Canyon has both. In fact, not only does it have more offerings now in terms of specs, but it’s also highly configurable so you can personalize it to your liking before hitting that buy button. With 9th-generation Intel Core chips, up to 64GB of memory and up to 4TB dual storage, we’re all for it. The only catch is that it’s pricier now as well. The lower configurations are still quite affordable, however, and among the best budget gaming PCs for the budget-conscious.