The season has changed, and when seasons change, computers can change, too. So maybe you need a new computer, and want to build it yourself.. These two builds are going to be called the Butterfly and the Bee. The builds are similar except for in a few areas, and as of writing, both come in at less than $600 USD. Both builds will be able to run any game at 1080p, and will achieve 60FPS with some tweaking in the settings. So, without further ado, let’s get started on the Intel PC Build.
CPU: Intel Pentium G3258 (Newegg | Amazon)
Not many people look at Pentium chips and think of gaming quality. They’re usually for businesses, cause they’re cheap. The interesting thing about the Pentium G3258 is that it can be overclocked with certain boards very easily, allowing users to get great power. Although it is only a dual core processor, when overclocked to around 4.0Ghz or more, it will perform very well in games and comes with single thread performance many Intel chips give.
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master TX3 (Newegg | Amazon)
The TX3 is a very good tower cooler for this processor. It has three contact heatpipes, comes with a single 92mm fan, but can have a second fan mounted for a push-pull configuration. This cooler should easily get the G3258 up to 4.0Ghz, allowing smooth gaming performance.
Motherboard: Asus H97M-E (Newegg | Amazon)
When the G3258 was announced, Asus also announced that all of their H97 boards would allow the chip to overclock. This board is a bit expensive, but the money saved from not having to buy an i3 CPU that isn’t overclockable can go into this board. If you want better performance, you can also go for a Z87 or Z97 board for a much easier, safer function.
RAM: Team Vulcan 2x4GB (Newegg | Amazon)
Team Vulcan has very dependable RAM, and 8GB is fine for gaming right now. With this board, upgrading RAM would be no problem, as there are 4 slots so that getting to 16GB in the future is always a viable option.
Drive: Seagate Barracuda 1TB (Newegg | Amazon)
This Seagate drive will allow users to a good library of games to their drive. Loading times may be a bit slow, but Seagate also has a very good hybrid drive as well, which boosts performance while booting the computer and loading games.
GPU: Gigabyte Windforce R9 280 (Newegg | Amazon)/MSI Twin Frozr GTX 760 (Newegg | Amazon)
For the graphics card, something that won’t need to be upgraded much in the future to get 1080p gaming is a must. For the Red Team, the R9 280 from Gigabyte will definitely pack a punch, and has been called the best sub-$250 card you can buy by various sites. But, some people enjoy some of the features Nvidia has, so the GTX 760 from MSI gives those features at a similar price point of the R9 280. Both of these cards have great aftermarket coolers on them, but the R9 280 is much longer, so clearance might be an issue for some people. 1080p gaming has never been cheaper with these two cards. Note: The GTX 760 will put the total cost of the build above $600.
PSU: Fractal Design Integra R2 500W (Newegg | Amazon)
Fractal Design is loved by almost all PC builders for their good case design, and their attention to detail is also evident in their power supplies. The Integra is a great PSU, with 80+ Bronze certification and enough power to push almost any build. Japanese capacitors also give it a long life, and it is also a very silent PSU.
Case: Rosewill Line-M (Newegg | Amazon)
Rosewill offers a very nice variety of cases, but to save money, we’ll go with a full featured, but clean looking case. The Line-M comes will USB3.0 in the front, as well as 2 fans for good airflow. Having good air flow is definitely needed, as keeping down temperatures on the main board is just as important as keeping down core components. Always have airflow in mind when building a new rig. It means the difference between a computer lasting 2 years and a computer last 5.
In conclusion, this build is an overclocker’s dream. The Pentium G3258 definitely gives its competition a run for their money, even if it is at a bit higher price. Partner it with an R9 280 or GTX 760, and games like Battlefield 4, Call of Duty Ghosts, and even Crysis can be played at 1080p with decent settings options. The lowest cost for the build is $586.02 USD according to PCPartPicker, before Windows.
Look for an AMD-centric build later, if you want to see what the Red Team can offer at a similar price point.