With an RTX 2060 graphics card, 16GB of RAM, and an Intel Core i5-12400F processor, this $700 gaming PC build will handle any game you throw on it on higher settings.
Would you like to max out games on a 1080P monitor with no problems? Do you want a gaming PC that will give you the room to upgrade to a higher-end system that can handle higher-resolution gaming in the future? Do you want to get into virtual-reality gaming?
Well, for just $700 you can build the perfect mid-range gaming computer that will have no trouble playing games (even Starfield) on a 1080P monitor, will meet the minimum requirements of the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, and that will give you the ability to easily upgrade to a system down the road that will be able to handle 1440P or 4K gaming.
Also Read: The Best Prebuilt VR-Ready Gaming PCs
And, for that matter, this system is powerful enough to run games on a 1440P monitor right now, as well as serve as an entry-level 4K gaming system.
In this guide, we’re going to give you a list of components that you can use to build a $700 gaming computer that can accomplish everything listed above. (We’ve also linked to a similarly priced pre-built desktop as well if you aren’t up for building a computer.)
For more affordable gaming PC builds at various price points, check out our Budget Gaming PC Build guide.
I. $700 Gaming PC Build Overview
This $700 build will provide a decent performance jump over our $600 PC build. The main difference between the two builds is that this $700 build comes with a higher-end CPU.
Ultimately, with the better CPU, this is a more powerful system than our $600 build. This $700 gaming computer comes with an Intel Core i5-12400F processor, an NVIDIA RTX 2060 video card, 16GB of memory, a 500GB SSD, and a nice-looking mid tower case.
In terms of performance for this build, you can expect it to run any game on max settings at at least ~60 FPS or higher. For more demanding titles, like Call of Duty, Assassin’s Creed, or PUBG, this build should deliver 60+ FPS on max settings. For non-demanding games like Valorant, Fortnite, Roblox, Apex Legends, League of Legends, and Rocket League, this build will easily be able to handle them on max settings and average over ~100+ FPS.
The specs in this system also make it a VR-ready PC build, too. So, if you want to pair it up with a Valve Index or an HTC Vive Pro 2 you can definitely do so. (Check out our guide, How Much is a VR Headset?)
The bottom line is that, if you’re looking for a powerful system to run all of your favorite games on higher settings, this $700 PC build will do the trick for you.
*NOTE: If you’re not up for building your own computer, click the “Shop Pre-Builts” button to see a similarly priced pre-built gaming computer.
Part List for $700 PC Build
|CPU||Intel Core i5-12400F|
|GPU||EVGA RTX 2060|
|SSD||Kingston A400 480GB|
|ODD||Install O.S. from USB|
Grand Total: $670-$730
*Component prices fluctuate daily. Click here to check current pricing.
**You’ll need an operating system. Windows costs ~$100. However, you can still install Windows for free and it will work indefinitely without activating it—there will just be a watermark at the bottom left of your desktop asking you to activate it.
12400F + GTX 2060 Super Benchmark
Watch Me Build This PC
*Note: Due to changing prices and components going out of stock, we update the part list in this guide on a regular basis to reflect the current trends. However, it is much easier to update the components to match current trends than it is to rebuild the system every time a component goes out of stock. So, since the video below is a bit older, the current list of parts posted above is quite different than the $700 gaming PC build that we posted a video on a few months ago. The video will still give you a good idea on what the building process looks like as well as how the $700 list of components will perform.
The list above is our choice for the best gaming PC builder under $700. However, there are different routes you can go with this build. And, in fact, at the time of writing this guide, the list of parts in this build actually come in quite a bit lower than $700. So, there is flexibility in what you can do with this build and how you can maximize your budget. We’ll discuss all of the other options you have for this build below, as well as what kind of performance you can expect, how to avoid the high cost of buying Windows, and what upgrade paths this system will offer you.
With an RTX 2060 graphics card and an Intel Core i5-12400F this system will deliver optimal performance in most games on a 1080P monitor:
- For less-demanding games like Fortnite, Rocket League, League of Legends, expect ~100+ frames per second on max settings on a 1080P monitor
- For more demanding games like Elden Ring, Halo Infinite, Tom Raider, God of War, etc. expect ~70+ FPS on high settings on a 1080P monitor
Unless you have a 4K monitor or a 1440P 144Hz+ monitor, you won’t have to worry about a having a low framerate with this build.
If you prefer AMD CPUs over Intel CPUs, you can definitely go that route with this build. However, as of right now the i5-12400F and a compatible budget-friendly motherboard is going to offer a better mix of price-to-performance than will the comparable Ryzen 5 5600 and a compatible motherboard.
If you have ~$50-60 extra in your budget, though, moving to a Ryzen 5 5600 and a solid B550 motherboard would be worth considering.
In some instances, this build actually comes in at a price that is under $700. If that’s the case for you at the time you read this guide, you can either keep that extra money, or you can upgrade other components in this build.
That extra $50 could be put towards upgrading the graphics card. You could also spend more money to get a better computer case, or, if you want to future proof it and prepare it for a higher-end graphics card upgrade in the future, you could opt for a more powerful power supply.
Ultimately, though, prices do often fluctuate on any given day and so it is very possible that when you go to read this guide that the total price is actually closer to (or even over) $700.
We leave the price of Windows 11 out of our builds because there are different ways to get an operating system for less than the $100 that Windows 11 costs. Not all of these methods are ideal, but we figured we’d let you decide which operating system and/or method for getting a copy of Windows is the best option for you. Here are three alternatives to paying ~$100 for a copy of Windows 11:
First, you could install a free Linux-based operating system. You won’t be able to play certain games that aren’t compatible with Linux, but you will save $100.
Second, you could buy a Windows 11 key from a third party marketplace for ~$30. I’ve had good success purchasing Windows keys from Kinguin.net and G2A.com in the past, but there is definitely some risk involved in purchasing a Windows license from a third party source, as it is not technically a method of purchasing Windows that is approved by Microsoft.
Finally, you could just install Windows 11 for free and not activate it. In my opinion, this is probably the best route to go if you’re working with a tight budget. The $100 that Windows 11 costs could be the difference between running your games at max settings and running them at medium-or-lower settings. Essentially, though, Microsoft allows anyone to install Windows onto their computer without forcing them to activate it. And, for the most part, you can still use Windows normally even when it’s not activated. The only thing you will lose out on is some customization options like setting a custom background for your desktop and you also won’t be able to access Microsoft for support (although this isn’t that big of a deal—I’ve used Windows-based systems for nearly 20 years and I’ve never once called Microsoft to ask them for help with Windows). But, I think in order to save $100, that is not a bad trade-off cost. And, at the very least, you could run the non-activated version of Windows for the time being until you can afford to purchase an activation key for it.
The cool thing about this $700 gaming computer build is that, if your main goal is to play games on higher settings on a 1080P monitor, you won’t need to upgrade its graphics card for a long time.
So, in my opinion, your best upgrade path for a system like this would be the following:
- Add more storage
This system comes with a 480GB SSSD. While that should be enough storage to hold you over for the time being, in this day and age, it probably won’t be enough for the majority of users over the long run. So, the first thing I’d do with this build is add another SSD. That can be another SATA SSD, or a newer and faster NVME SSD.
While the Intel Core i5-12400F processor will be fine for gaming in 2023 and beyond, you can easily upgrade it to a higher-end Intel Core i7 processor in the future and you won’t have to swap out any other parts.
If you’re building a new system and you need a new monitor, keyboard, and/or mouse to go with it, in this section we’ve provided a few quick picks for you that are cost-effective and will pair well with our $700 PC build:
|Acer XFA240|| ||/10|
|BenQ GL2460HM|| ||/10|
See more affordable 144Hz gaming monitor options by following the link.
|Logitech G213|| ||/10|
|Redragon K552 KUMARA|| ||/10|
|Thermaltake Tt eSPORTS|| ||/10|
Need help choosing the right keyboard size? Check out our guide What Keyboard Size Should You Get?
|Logitech G402|| ||/10|
|Logitech G203|| ||/10|
|Redragon M711|| ||/10|
If you’re a budget-oriented gamer that is in the market for a new gaming computer that can max out any game on a 1080P monitor, as well as run an Oculus Rift or HTC Vive headset, then this $700 gaming PC build is exactly what you need. It’s fairly inexpensive and it will easily handle modern games on higher settings. And, it meets the minimum requirements for both the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive.