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The best cheap gaming PCs starting at $430

The best cheap gaming PCs are still packed with powerful components, so you can stay on budget and take on the hottest indie and triple-A titles.
Written by Taylor Clemons, Staff Writer on
Reviewed by Nina Raemont

Prebuilt gaming PCs don't have to be expensive. Brands like HP, MSI, and Lenovo offer cheap gaming PC configurations for gamers who don't want to sacrifice their budget for a capable performance suite like up-to date CPUs, brilliant graphics, and comprehensive storage options. 

Many budget-friendly prebuilt gaming PCs also offer SSD storage for faster boot times and program launching in addition to RTX 30 series graphics cards. And if you're looking for ways to upgrade your gaming PC down the line, many models also come equipped with extra RAM slots and storage drive bays.

Also: The best gaming PCs

As an avid gamer myself, I rounded up the top models on the market, with my pick for the best cheap gaming PC overall going to the HP Omen 25L, thanks to its affordable price tag, support for up to 128GB of RAM, and RTX 3060 graphics card. Read to see which other budget gaming PCs match your CPU, GPU, gaming and budget preferences. 

The best cheap gaming PCs

Pros & Cons
  • Around $1,000
  • RTX 3060 graphics card
  • Supports up to 4 displays
  • Supports up to 128GB of RAM
  • Included keyboard and mouse are very basic
  • No Thunderbolt support
More Details

HP Omen 25L specs: CPU: Intel Core i5-1300F | GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 1TB SSD 

The HP Omen 25L retails for around $900 while still offering top-tier components and excellent performance. It's built with a 13th generation Intel Core i5 CPU, 16GB of RAM, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 graphics card, and a 1TB solid state drive for storage. It supports up to 128GB of memory, so if your needs change, you can always upgrade your RAM as you go. And with three slots for M.2 SSDs, and a 3.5-inch drive bay, you can drop in additional storage as your game library grows.

The HP Omen 25L also supports up to four displays with 3 DisplayPort inputs and an HDMI 2.0 port. The tower comes packaged with a basic keyboard and mouse, so you can start playing your favorite games right out of the box.

Pros & Cons
  • Supports 3 displays
  • Plenty of USB ports
  • Decent CPU and GPU
  • Keyboard and mouse included
  • Only one USB-C port
  • No Wi-Fi 6 support
More Details

HP Pavilion specs: CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 5600G | GPU: AMD Radeon RX 5500 | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 512GB SSD 

If you're an AMD loyalist, the HP Pavilion tower is a great, affordable option for a new gaming rig. It uses a Ryzen 5 5600G processor as well as an AMD Radeon RX 5500 graphics card to allow you to play just about any game on the market. It also has 16GB of RAM and a 512GB NVMe SSD for faster boot times and game launching. 

It also comes bundled with a basic keyboard and mouse so you can get started playing games right away. Plus, it supports Bluetooth connectivity if you prefer wireless peripherals. 

The front of the tower features multiple USB 3.1 ports, a USB-C port, and a microSD card reader to give you plenty of ways to connect peripherals and external storage devices. The back of the tower has four more USB 2.0 ports as well as an HDMI input and two DisplayPort inputs to support up to three displays. 

Pros & Cons
  • Wi-Fi 6
  • Supports 4 displays
  • 12th gen Intel Core i5
  • RTX 3050 GPU
  • Micro ATX form factor makes upgrading a bit difficult
  • No room for liquid cooling options
More Details

MSI Aegis R specs: CPU: Intel Core i5-12400F | GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 500GB SSD 

If you're an Intel loyalist looking to save a bit of money on a prebuilt gaming PC, the MSI Aegis R is a solid option. It's built with a 12th-generation Intel Core i5 processor, 16GB of RAM, a 500GB SSD, and an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 graphics card. And if you need even more memory and RAM, the Aegis R supports up to 128GB of RAM and features four storage drive bays as well as two M.2 slots for all of the configuration possibilities you can think of. 

It also supports Wi-Fi 6 for ultra-fast wireless internet speeds and Bluetooth 5.2 for more reliable and stable wireless peripheral connections. The RTX 3050 GPU has three DisplayPort inputs and one HDMI port, letting you connect up to four monitors for the ultimate gaming and multitasking setup. The tower itself has seven USB 3.1 ports, two USB 2.0 inputs, and two USB-C ports for connecting peripherals and charging mobile devices.

Pros & Cons
  • Just over $1000
  • RTX 3050 GPU
  • AMD Ryzen 7000 CPU
  • Upgradeable design
  • AMD CPU runs warmer than Intel processors
  • Limited USB inputs
More Details

Lenovo Legion Tower 5 Gen 8 specs: CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 7600 | GPU: Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 512GB SSD 

Even with the decline of the Crypto Craze, prebuilt gaming PC configurations still cost at least $1000 for a decent build, and if you want things like multiple storage drives or an up-to-date GPU, you'll have to spend even more. The Lenovo Legion Tower 5 retails for just over $1000, making it a great option if you have a flexible budget. It's built with an AMD Ryzen 5 7600 processor, 16GB of RAM, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050, as well as a 512GB SSD. 

This configuration gives you plenty of power to play the latest games as well as old favorites in your library with plenty of storage for new and old games. And if you need even more power and storage, the Legion Tower 5 has extra RAM slots and drive bays to give multiple future upgrade options. The tower case itself also features RGB lighting that can be customized to show off your personal style or match other RGB peripherals.

Pros & Cons
  • Under $1000
  • Expandable RAM and storage
  • 12th gen Intel Core i3 CPU
  • Somewhat limited power supply
More Details

HP Victus specs: CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 5600G | GPU: AMD Radeon RX 6400 | RAM: 8GB | Storage: 256GB SSD 

You may be working with a very limited budget when shopping for a new gaming PC. And fortunately, the HP Victus is priced under $1000 while still giving you what you need. It's built with an AMD Ryzen 5 5600G CPU, 8GB of RAM, a 256GB SSD, and an AMD Radeon RX 6400 graphics card. And just because it has an older GPU, that doesn't mean you can't still play all of the latest triple-A and indie games. 

The HP Victus can support up to 32GB of RAM and however much storage you want, which means that you can save a good bit of cash buying the prebuilt configuration and upgrading piecemeal as time goes on. And speaking of upgrades, this model features a second RAM slot along with three storage drive bays, which makes upgrading a relatively fast and easy process. 

This PC's one drawback is the 350 watt power rating, so if you want to add a second storage drive or a more powerful GPU, you'll need to drop in a more powerful PSU as well.

What is the best cheap gaming PC?

My pick for the best cheap gaming PC is the HP Omen 25L. Along with a price tag that sits just around $1,000, it's built with a 13th generation Intel Core i5 processor, 16GB of RAM, 1TB SSD, and Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060 GPU. It supports up to 128GB of RAM and has multiple slots for M.2 and 3.5-inch storage drives, allowing you to upgrade your memory and storage space as your needs change.

Cheap gaming PC




HP 25L


Intel Core i5-1300F

Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060

HP Pavilion


AMD Ryzen 5 5600G

AMD Radeon RX 5500

MSI Aegis R


Intel Core i5-12400F

Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050

Lenovo Legion Tower 5 Gen 8 


AMD Ryzen 5 7600

Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050

HP Victus Tower


AMD Ryzen 5 5600G

AMD Radeon RX 6400

Which budget gaming PC is right for you?

Once you've finalized your budget, you'll want to choose a gaming PC that has enough storage space for a small library of your favorite games as well as plenty of RAM for smooth gameplay.

You'll also want to make sure that the included GPU is powerful enough to handle most popular games, and that the power supply is able to keep up with your needs as you swap out components or add things like secondary storage drives or more RAM sticks.

See this chart for a quick need-based comparison overview. 

Choose this cheap gaming PC...

If you need...

HP 25L

A well-rounded and budget-friendly gaming PC. It supports up to 128GB of RAM and allows for storage expansion.

HP Pavilion

A budget AMD-based gaming PC. It's built with an AMD Ryzen 5 5600G CPU and Radeon RX 5500 graphics card for tons of power for AMD loyalists.

MSI Aegis R

A budget Intel-based gaming PC. It boasts a 12th gen Intel Core i5 processor and RTX 3050 graphics card, making it easy to get top-quality components. 

Lenovo Legion Tower 5 Gen 8

A gaming PC under $1500. This gaming PC retails for about $1000 while still offering great features like an AMD Radeon RX 6400 graphics card and dual storage drives.

HP Victus Tower

An ultra budget-friendly gaming PC. If your budget is so tight it squeaks, the HP Victus can be yours for under $600.

How did we choose these budget gaming PCs?

If you're in the market for a budget gaming PC, there are several factors to consider besides a lower price tag. That includes the following: 

  • CPU: You'll want a CPU that's been released within the last 5 years to ensure your PC can play just about anything in your library.
  • GPU: If you're working with a tight budget, opt for an older GPU like an RTX 16 series or Radeon RX 5000 series. You'll still be able to play almost anything while saving a bit of money.
  • Connectivity: Make sure that the gaming PC you want has enough USB, HDMI, and DisplayPort inputs to support all of your displays, peripherals, and storage devices.
  • Upgrade options: As preferences change, you may want to upgrade your gaming PC, which can also cost you. We included options with components that make for a swift, budget-friendly upgrade. 

Is it better to buy or build a gaming PC?

While you can find some affordable prebuilt gaming PCs, you can also save yourself a bit more cash by building your own PC. By building your own, you can take advantage of sales and deals on components in order to get the best parts for the cheapest prices. The trade-off is taking the time to put everything together yourself, so you'll have to decide if you're comfortable enough building your own PC, and whether or not you have the time and energy to do so.

Is a laptop cheaper than a gaming PC?

Unfortunately, a laptop designed for gaming is going to cost more than a PC tower. Laptops use the same powerful processors and graphics cards as towers (which contribute to the cost) and pack in premium features that have a higher production cost, like OLED and 4K touchscreens. These "extras" are reflected in the final price. 

While there are some great budget gaming laptops, don't expect them to be much cheaper than a traditional PC tower.

What is a good budget for a gaming PC?

Even before the chip shortages, you couldn't find that many prebuilt gaming PCs under $1,000. Now, with GPUs harder and harder to come by, a prebuilt PC is about the only way to get your hands on one, even older ones like the GTX 1660 Super. And they definitely come with a cost. You can still get a decent build for around $1,000, or even less if you put in the work to find them, but you may want to build out your budget to around $1,200 to account for rising component costs.

How much RAM do I need for gaming?

How much RAM you need depends on what you're looking to get out of your gaming experience. You can get a lot of games with just 8GB of RAM, and 16GB is just about perfect for handling even the most technically demanding titles and programs. You can find configurations with 32GB or even up to 128GB of RAM, but not only does this considerably increase the cost of the build, it's also overkill. Higher RAM configurations are best used by creative professionals rendering 3D art and animation, and for gaming, you start to see diminishing returns after 32GB. 

Do I need a dedicated GPU to play PC games?

Yes. Many new CPU chips have some sort of integrated graphics processing unit, but it's best used for very casual home use like streaming Netflix or looking at your aunt's vacation photo album on Facebook. To launch the most popular game titles, you need a dedicated GPU, but it doesn't have to be a fancy, expensive one. You can use an older card like a GTX 1650 or Radeon RX 5500 and still get a lot of mileage out of your build.

Are there alternative cheap gaming PCs worth considering?

There are budget-friendly prebuilt gaming PCs available from other brands, too. If you're willing to spend just a bit more, here's a short list of other options that are also worth considering:

An Asus ROG Strix G10 desktop tower on a grey background

Best alternative for beginners

Asus Strix G10

This model features AMD Ryzen 7 5800X CPU, GeForce RTX 3060 graphics card, 16GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD, and 1TB HDD. This configuration gives you plenty of power and storage without breaking the bank on cutting-edge components or fancy features you may not need.

View at Walmart
An Acer Nitro 50 desktop on a grey background

Best alternative under $1,000

Acer Nitro 50

The Acer Nitro 50 is built with a 12th-generation Intel Core i5 CPU, GeForce RTX 3050 graphics card, and dual storage that allows for the SSD to become a boot drive for an ultra-fast startup. Finally, the 1TB HDD gives you plenty of space for your Steam, Origin, or Epic game store library.

View at Newegg
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