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Build Guide

Entry Level AMD Gaming Build

by ThoughtA

31
56 Comments

Description

Preface

With the current mining craze, prices of GPUs are high and availability is low. However, with patience and vigilance, you can find a fairly reasonable price. With this in mind, this guide uses one of the new AMD Raven Ridge APUs, which will allow you to play many games while waiting and searching for a GPU at an acceptable price.


CPU

The Ryzen 5 2400G is a CPU and GPU packed into one chip. While not as strong as discrete gaming video cards, the 2400G's integrated GPU will easily handle popular games like League of Legends, CS:GO, and Overwatch. However, it will likely not provide a great PUBG experience. It comes with a stock CPU cooler, so adding an aftermarket cooler will not be necessary.

Once a discrete video card is purchased, the 2400G will offer competitive CPU performance, making this a great short and long term purchase.

Motherboard

We're using a parametric filter to constantly select the best-priced motherboard while meeting selected criteria. In this case, we are filtering for mATX B350 chipsets, which will allow us to overclock the CPU without breaking the bank. The compatibility engine will filter out anything not compatible with the build.

Memory

For this build and most machines outside of the top end enthusiast realm we opted to go with 8GB of DDR4 memory. The parametric filter finds the best price on dual channel 8GB kits of memory that are within AMD’s recommended specifications. We've limited it to DDR4-2933 and above, as Raven Ridge APUs scale well with higher frequency memory.

Storage

We're using a parametric filter to select the best-priced 2TB mechanical drive. Unfortunately, with the rising cost of NAND, in addition to the rising cost of video cards due to the current mining craze, we've had to cut out the SSD in order to keep this build more budget-friendly. Everyone's needs are different, so feel free to increase capacities or add an SSD to fit yours.

GPU

Due to the high cost of GPUs and low availability, we are using a parametric filter for a GeForce GTX 1050 Ti with a max price set. With patience and vigilance, you can find a video card for around this price, and we want to provide a part list that is more accurate to this concept.

In the meantime, the graphics processing power of the Ryzen 5 2400G APU will be sufficient for quality gaming in popular games like League of Legends, CS:GO and Overwatch. While you likely won't get desired performance specifically in PUBG, the APU will be able to carry you in other games until you find an available GPU at an acceptable price.

Case

All of the components are housed in the Cooler Master MasterBox Lite 5 mid tower. This case offers a lot of premium features for a low price, including a full-size window and PSU shroud. It also includes 2 USB 3.0 front panels ports, several cable management features such as cable cutouts and a cabling bump, and it can fit full sized GPUs and nearly all PSUs.

PSU

For the PSU, we're using a parametric selection of a few well-reviewed semi-modular and modular units, which are all rated for good power efficiency and can provide plenty of power for this build.

Intel Version

Here is the Intel version of our Entry Level Gaming Guide.

Part List Customize This Part List

Warning: These parts have potential issues/incompatibilities. (See details.)

Estimated Wattage: 227W
Component Selection Base Promo Shipping Tax Price Where
CPU €132.90 €7.99 €140.89 Alternate Buy
Motherboard
From parametric filter
  • Socket / CPU: AM4
  • Form Factor: Micro ATX
  • Chipset: AMD B350
  • Onboard Video: Depends on CPU
€70.38 €70.38 Amazon France Buy
Memory
From parametric filter
  • Speed: DDR4-2933, DDR4-3000, DDR4-3200, DDR4-3300, DDR4-3333
  • Type: 288-pin DIMM
  • Size: 8GB (2x4GB)
€95.32 Free two-day shipping with Amazon Prime €95.32 Amazon France Buy
Storage
From parametric filter
  • Capacity: 2TB - 10TB
  • Type: 7200RPM
  • Form Factor: 3.5"
€26.59 €26.59 Amazon France Buy
Video Card
From parametric filter
  • Price: €0.00 - €200.00
  • Chipset: GeForce GTX 1050 Ti
€169.90 Free two-day shipping with Amazon Prime €169.90 Amazon France Buy
Case €49.90 Free two-day shipping with Amazon Prime €49.90 Amazon France Buy
Power Supply €67.16 Free two-day shipping with Amazon Prime €67.16 Amazon France Buy
Base Total: €612.15
Shipping: €7.99
Total: €620.14
* Using your selected merchants and only including nearby in-store pickup prices)
* Some physical dimension restrictions cannot (yet) be automatically checked, such as cpu cooler / RAM clearance with modules using tall heat spreaders.

Potential Issues / Incompatibilities

  • Some AMD B350 chipset motherboards may need a BIOS update prior to using Raven Ridge CPUs. Upgrading the BIOS may require a different CPU that is supported by older BIOS revisions.

Comments Sorted by:

p.eckert31 6 points 1 month ago

I'm glad the compatibility filter flagged it, but you should really mention the need to update the mobo to be compatible with Raven Ridge processors. My roommate was told it would take roughly a month to send him a kit to update his bios, because Newegg would not accept a return for it due to incompatibility of the BIOS. Luckily, we have another roommate who had a Ryzen 3 1200 and a 1050ti. We had to disassemble one computer and use the components to update the other. The new build would've taken about a month to receive parts from AMD, if he was even approved for the update kit.

CrazedPatel 3 points 1 month ago

You can request a boot kit for free in which they will give you another processor so you can update BIOS

p.eckert31 2 points 1 month ago

Yea, he bought MSI, and their rep said he would have to pay for shipping the mobo back to MSI for an update, and then they would ship it back to him. Total time: 2-4 weeks. AMD said he could request an older AM4 chip to update, but it would be waiting on approval for about 2 weeks, and then it would ship regular post, so another 1-2 weeks. Just wanted to say, if you are buying a motherboard, they now have ones with Raven Ridge stickers on the box that say it is the latest updated bios.

ChrisZ 2 points 24 days ago

I don't know if I'm lucky, but I received the boot kit in 4 days after the confirmation for the RMA from AMD (which was another 2 days), in total, it took less than a week?

usa20546 2 points 23 days ago

Who do request the kit from and how? Thanks!

justinspace 1 point 8 days ago

Fill out the request form, and in the product description put "boot kit required"

https://support.amd.com/en-us/warranty/rma

I haven't done this yet, but this is how I plan to do it. Hope this helps.

ShootDawg 3 points 1 month ago

While you do say you are waiting for a 1050 Ti to come down in price, you don't come out and say that you need to pickup a video card in order to use this building while you wait, since the motherboard does not have on-board video ports

ThoughtA staff submitter 3 points 1 month ago

Good catch, I'd left out one criteria in the parametric filter and have since fixed it. Thank you.

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Vairfoley 16 Builds 2 points 1 month ago

This is a fantastic build guide.

Hopefully, the AM4 platform will be here to stay for a while so this build will have a great upgrade path in the future. I'm absolutely going to use this as a baseline for any budget builds I'll make in the future.

The only thing I would possibly change is the 2TB HDD. Of course, storage space varies from user to user, but personally, I would start out with a smaller SSD since secondary HDDs are so much easier to throw in and upgrade afterwards without having to clone or reinstall Windows.

JafakeanBacon 2 points 1 month ago

A note about the case's side panel: On the MasterBox Lite 5, the side panel is acrylic, while on the Masterbox Lite 5 RGB, the panel is tempered glass. Still a great case, just a small correction for the build description.

PixelatedHam 2 points 1 month ago

Thsi is really a better build without the GTX 1050ti, it beats the G4560/GT 1030 combo, which is also solid. Definitely pop a SSD in there instead of a HDD. Are there any boards that already have the most recent BIOS for Raven Ridge? Cause I don't want to wait 4 weeks just to get a kit.

spartanvi 1 Build 1 point 1 day ago

Agreed. This is more like a $400 "upgrade path" oriented build: start with the core components, minus the discrete GPU. Then add whatever GPU you can afford when the time comes, which is covered in the preface.

From a bang-for-buck perspective, a Core i3 8100 or i5 8400 + GTX 1050 Ti is a better value proposition than a R5 2400G + GTX 1050 Ti, but that's if you have your full $600 budget ready to go.

Smellbringer 1 point 24 days ago

Does it really need a tempered glass case when, if we're going for budget, looks shouldn't matter? On that note you can also get an EVGA PSU for $20. And $500GB isn't great but that's another $20 saved, we're looking for entry and entry should require some sacrifices. Other than that, pretty solid starter.

constantlymat 1 point 23 days ago

It seems to me that taking the R5 1600 instead of the 2400G is a no brainer in this system at current prices. Only 20€ more expensive, no bios issues and in a couple of years still powerful enough to accompany a new GPU. So no need to replace the CPU as well.

Maconmx5 3 points 20 days ago

Seeing as how the set-up has no dedicated GPU, it would make no sense to go for the 1600. You'd have no video out until you bought a GPU down the road, rendering your PC useless.

samfrost 1 point 20 days ago

why 11k for psu?

FrosticalGamer 1 point 19 days ago

Is the B350 tomahawk Bio supported with the Ryzen 3 APU?

Nabil1701 1 point 17 days ago

Can anyone help me coz its been a while since the bios problem so is it safe to buy a MOBO now from Amazon.

Triniking 1 point 16 days ago

I would recommend trying to buy a new mobo in person in order to find out if it has an updated bios.

Garydon 1 point 6 days ago

just purchased this MOBO from newegg. I wonder what the odds are of getting one with the updated bios

acedirt234 1 point 13 days ago

Finally, the 1050 ti drops under 200 USD

Garydon 1 point 10 days ago

Thinking about this build as a first for me.. I want it to do one thing and one thing only and that's to raid on WoW not looking for high or ultra settings would this suffice?

Cyberstorm 1 point 2 hours ago

Judging from the minimum specs the game would run just fine on this pc

ThriftStoreRaider 4 Builds 1 point 7 days ago

Will be recommending this to my college friends, thanks again ThoughtA! Always good to have a cheap PC so you have room to buy ramen noodles.

Nicventure 1 point 7 days ago

Is there a board that you can recommend that does NOT requires another CPU or Kit to get this CPU to work with it?

Sinoman 1 point 1 day ago

tHE PROBLEM WAS THE bIOS , I would hazard a guess and say that you are very safe in buying any mobo now as they should all have updated BIOS. I cant gurantee it tho.

k0reansamurai 1 point 4 days ago

I agree with pretty much everything except for your hdd choice. The hitachi drives sold at this price point are "refurbished," and I use quotes because a good number of reviewers have said their drives since failed after purchasing. The Seagate Barracuda 2tb drives are only about 10 dollars more and they will be way more reliable.

ThoughtA staff submitter 1 point 4 days ago

Thanks for the heads up. I don't believe that model is necessarily refurbished on all listings, but the Amazon one seems to be, so I've removed that. A new model will take its place on the list very shortly.

Rafael-G 1 point 3 days ago

Does this have WiFi on the mobo?

Skrippy 1 point 1 day ago

Hey, I'm going to make my first PC build and I figured I'd go with this one or the intel one, because I don't yet trust myself to pick the right parts, and I have some questions. (1) What is a good budget PC monitor to go with? (2) Does the motherboard come with a Wi-Fi adaptor or will I have to buy one to connect via USB? (3) Do I need to buy any extension cables for the power supply or do all the necessary cables come with it? (4) What are some good perennials to buy? I'd like a cheaper mechanical keyboard, a good mouse and mousepad, and some sort of headphones. (5) Should I bother with buying more fans? I noticed that the case comes with only 1 fan, and has room for around 4 or so more. I'd like to keep from burning my first PC up, so I need some advice.

Cyberstorm 1 point 2 hours ago

Click “customize this parts list” scroll down and add a monitor, sort by price and pice the one you want

Make sure the monitor and GPU have at least one port in common or you will need to buy an adaptor

ooJay 1 point 18 hours ago

would this be able to run fortnite on 60+ frames

tan--ahmed 0 points 1 month ago

What do you do about the Mobo bios issue?

usa20546 0 points 23 days ago

Same Question.....

aden1928 0 points 1 month ago

when you say 442 or what ever you didnt include a graphics card which made me confused

kingawsume 3 points 1 month ago

The R5 2400G is an APU; it includes a GPU on the die. The BIOS will allocate some of your system memory for use as the on-die GPU's VRAM. Think of it as including a low power graphics card on the CPU (the 1030 springs to mind, as the maximum RAM allocation as of a week ago or so was 2 GB.)

Logane616 1 point 1 month ago

At lower settings those should be fine

willfeltner 1 Build 0 points 28 days ago

Why an APU and a GPU?

Triniking 3 points 28 days ago

The APU is a stand-by for the absent gtx 1050ti.

The alternative is GPU hunting first and then buying a r5 1400 later.

willfeltner 1 Build 0 points 28 days ago

Interesting, Thank you. I recommend removing the 1050ti from the build and making a separate guide for those who want a 1050ti for 200 more.

BenAky 0 points 17 days ago

Correct me if I'm wrong, but wouldn't this bottleneck?

diabolicflame93 2 Builds 1 point 16 days ago

No a 1050 ti should be just fine. You could probably go up to a 1070 before you would see any major bottle-necking.

BonnieFan720 -1 points 27 days ago

there isn't even a GPU. Any reasons?

SayPex 3 points 26 days ago

The Ryzen 5 2400G is a CPU and GPU packed into one chip. While not as strong as discrete gaming video cards, the 2400G's integrated GPU will easily handle popular games like League of Legends, CS:GO, and Overwatch. However, it will likely not provide a great PUBG experience. It comes with a stock CPU cooler, so adding an aftermarket cooler will not be necessary.

Once a discrete video card is purchased, the 2400G will offer competitive CPU performance, making this a great short and long term purchase.

PizzaTimeGuy -1 points 26 days ago

the heck is the gpu

blueshift9 3 points 24 days ago

It doesn't need one, These Raven Ridge chips are integrated - literally says it in the description. The idea here is to wait out until GPU prices come down.

Superninjv@gmail.com -2 points 24 days ago

Why get a GPU with an APU already on board. The 1050ti isn't that much more powerful than the vega 11 GPU.

diabolicflame93 2 Builds 2 points 16 days ago

Look at benchmarks between the 1050ti and the apu in this build. The apu is closer to a 1030.

spartanvi 1 Build 1 point 1 day ago

Read his preface. This is more like a $400 build with an upgrade path for a discrete GPU later. I would argue that spending $600 right out of the gate for a 2400G + GTX 1050 Ti is sub-optimal. You're better off with an i3-8100 or i5-8400 + GTX 1050 Ti if the full $600 budget is ready to go.

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PixelatedHam 1 point 1 month ago

With the GTX 1050ti, yes.

sapphirethunder 1 point 1 month ago

With just the integrated graphics of 2400G, you need to turn everything down to low and you still might not get 60fps at 1080p. With 1050Ti you can easily get 60fps at 1080p on around medium to high settings.

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vagabond139 5 Builds 2 points 1 month ago

The M12II is a poor choice in PSU. It lacks OTP, its group regulated, its not a quiet PSU, it doesn't support C6/C7 power states, and its not that good performance wise. Its 8 years old, time to move on from it.

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vagabond139 5 Builds 1 point 1 month ago

If they didn't mention anything like I assume was in the comment then it was a bad review site that shouldn't be used for PSU's. You can't have a opinion on it just based on ownership, PSU's are highly complex parts. Opinions are not created equal. I don't have a valid opinion on quantum physics and you don't have a valid opinion based on just owning the PSU. To have a real opinion outside of visible or physical stuff e.g cables, weight, etc you will either need to look up reviews/info on the unit or test the performance of your PSU and take it apart. How can you know something that you don't know or haven't checked? This is everything Tomshardware does to review a PSU, it is how you should fully review a PSU.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/how-we-test-psu,4042.html#p1

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rjay.dr 1 Build 3 points 1 month ago

Could you please explain why you don't recommend the use of the M12II evo power supply? Are there known issues with it? Thanks.

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rjay.dr 1 Build 1 point 1 month ago

Wow those are a lot of points. It seems you've really done your research about power supplies. Have you owned an M12II before and encountered any issue? What PSU within the same power rating would you recommend instead?

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rjay.dr 1 Build 2 points 1 month ago

Got it,thanks! Will consider these in the future.

Reason:
Note: Wattages are estimates only. Actual power draw may differ from listed values.
Component Estimated Wattage
AMD - Ryzen 5 2400G 3.6GHz Quad-Core Processor 8W - 65W
Asus - PRIME B350M-A Micro ATX AM4 Motherboard 15W - 60W
Corsair - Vengeance LPX 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR4-3000 Memory 7W - 7W
Seagate - Constellation ES.2 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive 4W - 20W
KFA2 - GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4GB OC Video Card 18W - 75W
Total: 52W - 227W