A couple of months ago we published a guide dedicated to the assembly of a PC to play with guarantees in 1440p resolution that was also prepared to face the transition that will mark the arrival of the new generation of consoles. Its total cost was 880 euros, a figure that rises to 900 euros if we have to buy the new motherboard.
With that equipment we enjoy excellent performance in almost all current games, even those that have a very poor optimization, such as Red Dead Redemption 2 and Control, but is it possible to mount a PC to play in 1440p with guarantees without exceeding the 600 euro band? It is a very interesting question, and we are going to answer it in this new guide.
Adjusting the budget so much forces us to make significant sacrifices, Of that there is no doubt, but I already tell you that, despite everything, it is possible to mount a PC to play with guarantees in said resolution, since the graphics card we need to play in 1440p is not too expensive, and the rest components are also not over priced.
However, it must be taken into account that we must fine-tune settings to avoid imbalances that may affect the final performance of the team, and that we will not be able to move all the games on the market in 1440p and maximum qualities with 60 FPS totally stable. In some we will have to reduce the graphic quality a bit and adjust it to high levels if we want to reach those 60 FPS, but it is a small sacrifice taking into account the budget in which we are moving.
What requirements must a PC meet to play 1440p with guarantees?
We must establish a minimum base as a starting point from which we must not lower, since if we do so we will have problems that will be noticed in the short or medium term. The first step is to determine what platform are we going to use, and seeing how small our budget is (less than 600 euros) the conclusion is clear, we opted for the AMD socket AM4.
Right now we can find a lot of AM4 motherboards with B450 chipset at really attractive prices. These boards have a long useful life, since even in their most modest configurations they allow upgrading to Ryzen 3000 series (Zen 2) processors, and they have everything we will need both in the medium and long term. It is the best quality-price investment within the budget in which we operate.
We already have a clear platform, now we must answer other questions important that we will leave defined below:
Processor: Current games use four cores and some require eight threads to function optimally, so that’s where the minimum is. When playing in 1440p the dependence of the CPU in games is less marked than in 1080p, but it is still of considerable importance, so we should not reduce the budget for this component too much.
RAM: Most of the current titles work well with 8 GB of RAM, but some consume up to 11 GB and with the arrival of the new generation we will see a notable increase, so we must start from 16 GB of RAM so as not to limit the useful life of the equipment. If we do not have enough RAM, the games may work, but we will notice jerks and micro-patches that will make the experience not a good one.
Storage unit– SSD is taking over. Prices are a little inflated, but right now it is best to fine-tune the budget to mount an SSD of at least 500 GB, since it makes a noticeable difference in loading times, in the fluidity of the system and in other specific aspects , like loading heavy textures in games. With the arrival of the next generation of consoles, this component will become increasingly important.
Graphic card: It is the central pillar of the team, and for this reason we must allocate most of the budget, although without falling into too large imbalances. It is important that it has more than 4 GB of graphic memory and that it offers enough power to configure any current game in high or very high qualities while maintaining good fluidity.
Well, we have already defined the base we need, so now we only have to enter choose components that will shape this PC to play in 1440p with guarantees for less than 600 euros. Get comfortable, we start.
Motherboard: GIGABYTE B450M S2H
We have a very limited budget, so we have adjusted the choice of the motherboard to the maximum, but without falling into excesses. We have chosen the GIGABYTE B450M S2H because it is a model that has everything we need To mount this equipment, it offers a fairly good build quality, it has a slot for M.2 PCIE NVMe SSD, it supports high-speed DDR4 memory, it allows us to overclock and it has passive dissipation in key areas (VRM and chipset).
This motherboard offers a lot for what it costs, actually right now There is nothing better in value for less than 60 euros. With it we can expand, if we need it, to a Ryzen 7 3700X processor without problem.
We can get it for 59.98 euros.
Alternative: if we have a bigger budget we can get a GIGABYTE B450 AORUS M, which features superior design and construction, and offers a much more comprehensive feature set. It costs 91.98 euros.
Processor: Ryzen 5 1600 AF
It has gone up a little price, but this is still the best processor we can buy right now to build a gaming PC on a tight budget. It is based on architecture Zen + and manufactured in 12nm process, and thanks to its 6-core and 12-wire configuration, not only can you move any current game with all the guarantees, but it is also prepared to face the transition that will be made by new generation consoles.
Comes with a fan Wraith Spire that allows you to keep your temperatures under control, even if we dare to overclock a bit. We can find it for 109.90 euros.
Zen + architecture in process of 12 nm.
Six cores and twelve threads at 3.2 GHz-3.6 GHz, normal and turbo mode.
Supports overclocking with B350 chipsets and above.
16 MB of L3 cache.
65 Watt TDP.
Compatible with AM4 socket.
Alternative: There is no alternative available right now that is really worth it, since the Ryzen 7 2700 has risen in price and is currently around 200 euros. It would be better to invest that extra money to improve the graphics card of this PC before.
Graphics card: PowerColor Red Dragon Radeon RX 580 8 GB GDDR5
AMD’s Radeon RX 580 series remains the best gaming alternative in 1080p and 1440p without having to make a big investment.
The 8 GB version allows us to configure to the maximum games with a high demand for graphics memory, like DOOM Eternal, for example, and is better prepared to face the transition we will experience with the arrival of Xbox Series X and PS5. There isn’t a huge price difference between the 4GB and 8GB versions, so it’s best to go for the latter whenever possible.
We have chosen the PowerColor Red Dragon Radeon RX 580 with 8 GB GDDR5 because it offers all the performance we need to mount a PC capable of move games in 1440p with guarantees, and because it is reduced to 169.90 euros.
Polaris 20 graphic core.
1,350 MHz GPU.
144 texturing units.
32 raster units.
8 GB of GDDR5 at 8 GHz effective.
185 Watt TDP. Requires an 8-pin connector. We will need a source with 27A and 500 watts.
Alternative: if we have a little more budget the GTX 1660 Super It is an excellent alternative, especially now that we can get it for 205.95 euros.
RAM Memory: G.Skill FlareX DDR4 3,200 MHz (8 GB x 2)
As we said, memory is fundamental and we need, at least, 16 GB of RAM to ensure good performance. Since we have mounted a Ryzen 5 1600 AF processor also we need to mount high speed modules dual channel so that it can develop its full potential, and that is, as our regular readers already know, the performance of Ryzen processors is greatly affected by the frequency of RAM memory.
The minimum to prevent RAM from slowing down a Ryzen too much are 2,666 MHz. We have opted for a G.Skill FlareX kit from DDR4 to 3,200 MHz with CL16 latencies in two modules of 8 GB each, allowing us to reach both the optimum level of memory and the optimal level of speed and latency.
In short, we hit the nail on the head, and the price is quite reasonable, 90.80 euros.
Alternative: We could choose 3,000 MHz memories to save between 5 and 10 euros, or mount other kits with RGB LED lighting if we want to add a touch of color to the equipment. It is not worth mounting RAM more frequently with the configuration of this PC, or exceeding 16 GB.
Storage: 512 GB PCIE NVMe Integral SSD
The storage unit is a major headache on any budget gaming PC. We could mount a high capacity HDD and a low capacity SSD to shape a balanced configuration, but with the budget we have, I think it is better to opt directly for an economical PCIE NVMe SSD.
In this case we have chosen the 512 GB PCIE NVMe Integral SSD, which reaches speeds of 2,000 MB / s and 1,600 MB / s in sequential read and write. With it we can have several games installed simultaneously and we will not have to make great sacrifices. If we need more space in the future, we can mount a low-cost SATA SSD or HDD.
We can get it for 77.55 euros, sold and managed by Amazon, with all the reliability that this implies.
Alternative: If we can spend a little more, it is best to directly mount the Crucial P1 CT1000P1SSD8, which has 1TB capacityIt reaches speeds of 2,000 MB / s and 1,750 MB / s in sequential reading and writing and costs 127.11 euros.
Power Supply: NOX HUMMER X 500W Semi-Modular Bronze
We have a PC that does not have a high consumptionIn fact, the only component that is a little more “greedy” is the graphics card, so this is the one that defines the font that we are going to need.
To complete a solid assembly and with guarantees we need a power supply of 500 watts that meets the minimum quality standard, and has a modular or semi-modular design so that we can manage wiring efficiently.
We have opted for the NOX HUMMER X 500W Bronze because meets everything we need. It has enough power to move this PC without problems, reaches 41A in the 12V rail (we need a minimum of 27A for this PC), it has 80 Plus Bronze certification, it comes with two 6 + 2-pin PCIE connectors and has a semi-modular design that It will help us reduce unnecessary wiring.
An excellent purchase for its good value for money. It costs 49.99 euros.
Alternative: You don’t need to buy anything superior for this PC. We could choose a cheaper alternative to save 10 or 15 euros, but we would be giving up the semi-modular design and sacrificing performance. Not worth it.
Tower: Mars Gaming MCX ATX Cristal
This component can be varied depending on the personal taste of each one, as long as we are careful and make sure that the model we are going to choose has space to house all the components we have chosen, and that allows us to create a good air flow.
The PC that we have mounted has minimal thermal needs, the motherboard is of type micro-ATX and the graphics card has a length of 25.5 centimeters, so it is easy to fit this configuration into almost any type of tower.
We have chosen the Mars Gaming MCX ATX Cristal because it offers a good value for what it costs, and because it has a pretty nice aesthetic. It comes with a rear fan and is priced at € 39.68.
Alternative: As we have said, you can choose another tower that you like more, but take into account what we have indicated above. The GIGABYTE B450M S2H motherboard only allows you to connect an additional fan, so if you want to mount more on the tower you will need a “splitter” cable.
Endnotes: total cost and performance
The total price of this configuration is 597.80 euros, which means that we have met the objective of keeping the cost below 600 euros, but what is this PC capable of? Can you really with current games in 1440p? Undoubtedly, and offers an excellent overall user experience thanks to the PCIE NVME SSD.
We have been offering you alternatives to each component so that you have options with which to customize the main build a little more. Personally I think you should prioritize, if you have a little more budget, improving the graphics card and SSD, right in that order. So, for example, if you can spend 700 euros, the ideal would be to mount the GTX 1660 Super and the 1 TB SSD.
I know you are looking forward to see what this team is capable of offering, so I will not entertain you any more. This is the performance offered by the base configuration (Ryzen 5 1600 AF, 16 GB of RAM and RX 580 with 8 GB):
Shadow of the Tomb Raider: 1440p, very high quality and DirectX 12 with 40 FPS averages.
Resident Evil 2 Remake: 1440p, highest quality and DirectX 11 with 58 FPS averages.
Battlefield V: 1440p, highest quality and DirectX 11 with 62 FPS averages.
Red Dead Redemption 2: 1440p, high quality and DirectX 12 with 35 FPS averages.
DOOM Eternal: 1440p, highest quality (ultra-nightmare) and Vulkan with 65 FPS averages.
The Witcher III: 1440p, highest quality and DirectX 11 with 46 FPS averages.