I’ve been a casual gamer for sometime now but have decided to pick it up slightly due to some additional free time on my hands. I therefore took the plunge and decide to build my own budget gaming PC. There are hundreds of in-depth posts & videos online with regards to purchasing the correct components and guides to building a PC. Here is a brief breakdown of how the build went.

I initially set myself a budget of £500 and bought the following components for my gaming pc, all of which were checked for compatibility (try http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/).

Processor : AMD FX8 8320 AM3+ 3.5GHz
Motherboard : Asus M5A97 R2.0 AM3+ 970 DDR3 ATX
Ram : 8gb Corsair Vengeance DDR3 1600MHz
Graphics : AMD Radeon R9 270X 2gb
Power Supply : 600W
Hard Drive : 1TB Seagate Barracuda

Plus a DVD drive, case and fans, wireless card and operating system. These items totalled £550.

This was my first build and I was relying heavily on the instructions provided to help with the install. Typical of most instructions, they were limited in detail.

The first stage of the build was to set up the motherboard. This consisted of installing the CPU, cooler and RAM to start with. The CPU easily slots into the board’s designated slot, ensuring the arrow on the CPU and the arrow on the board match up. The CPU cooler was then installed on top, thermal paste was pre-applied to the cooler. If it wasn’t, I would have had to apply the paste myself. Then the ram simply slots into the slots and clipped into place.

Moving onto the case, I made it fully accessible by removing the sides and then screwed the power supply into place. I also clipped in the I/O shield and screwed in the case fans. The motherboard was then put in place, holding it by the CPU cooler on top of the metal support frame. The board was then screwed securely into place.

The final stages included installing the GPU and wireless card into appropriate PCI slots, installing the DVD drive and hard drive I then wired everything accordingly. Once happy, I tidied the install with cable ties and was ready to install the operating system. I installed Windows 7, my preferred operating system and installed/updated hardware and software drivers.

Overall I am very happy with the build It maxed out Windows Experience Index to 7.9’s, gets extremely high FPS on Diablo 3 & Guild Wars 2, on high settings at 1080p. Granted they’re older games. The PC runs at a cool 42’C. I have no doubt it will perform well against the latest games, maybe with slightly reduced settings but that’s expected, considering its a £550 build!