$400 Starter PC Build

If you are looking to build a Desk PC but are on a budget and need to purchase parts for the actual PC for under $400, I’ve compiled a list of solid PC components from reliable manufacturers that I would recommend.

Note: This is a base system meant to grow with you as your needs and budget allows. It’s capabilities can be expanded over time with additional memory, dedicated graphics, and even a more powerful processor. You won’t be running a video editing render farm from this machine but it will give you a solid foundation to grow your Desk PC setup.

As of this writing, these parts come to a total of around $390. A base system to be sure, but built for upgradability.

Links to each product on Amazon are provided. Links will open in new window so that you do not lose your place.

Motherboard –
ASUS Prime B450 Plus Ryzen 2 ATX Gaming Motherboard

Processor –
AMD Ryzen 5 2400G Processor with Radeon RX Vega 11 Graphics

RAM – CORSAIR Vengeance LPX 8GB (1 x 8GB) DDR4 DRAM 2400MHz C16

Storage – Crucial BX500 120GB 3D NAND SATA SSD

Power Supply – EVGA 600 BQ, 80+ Bronze 600W, Semi Modular

A Note About The Motherboard

ASUS Prime B450 Plus ATX Gaming Motherboard – The one area where I always encourage builders to go a little high on their budget is the motherboard. If the CPU is the brain of the system then the motherboard is the spinal cord, the place where all of the connections happen. There are key features that you want to ensure that you have in a motherboard as the entire system depends on it.

M.2 NVMe slot – this is a super-fast connection for a special type of SSD drive that installs directly to the motherboard. Although we won’t be purchasing one for this budget startup, the option will be there to upgrade when the finances are right.

SATA Connectors – This is where you connect internal storage drives (SSDs and traditional platter hard drives) to your system. I always recommend at least four SATA connectors. This motherboard has six, plenty of room to expand as your storage needs grow!

USB 3.1 Gen 2 – While still a relatively new input, this new generation of USB offers the fastest data transfer available. As new devices become available to support this connectivity, you’ll be ready!

Now, again, this is a basic starter build. It doesn’t include a dedicated graphics card so it may not handle all of the games out there but it will get you up and running. You can always add a graphics card later.

To significantly boost the performance of this system, consider purchasing a dedicated graphics card. You can add an 8 GB RX 570 for less than $200. That will bring this system to a level that it can handle the vast majority of gaming and productivity tasks that you throw at it. But again, stay within your budget and grow your system over time as your wallet allows.

If you are ready to start building a Desk PC to put this system into, be sure to review my step by step guide to building a desk PC. And if after reading it you still have questions, use the Contact Me or Suggest A Topic links and let’s see if I can help guide you through this build.

Now Go Make It!