Best Budget 550$ Ryzen Gaming PC Build
Not everyone can spend 1050$ plus on a gaming PC build capable of running games on ultra graphics settings at 4K and 150 FPS at the same time. And to be honest, for most people these builds are super overkill and not really necessary.
Most gamers are still playing on 1080p monitors with 75 Hz to 120 Hz refresh rates. So what is the use of 150 FPS refresh rates?
Most gamer rather ask themselves whether to buy a gaming console, like the PS4, Xbox One, or Nintendo Switch, instead of a gaming PC.
Building your own PC is not that hard to do and can save you a lot of money. Building a PC is like LEGO for adults.
In this article we present an absolute console killer build with a powerful AMD Ryzen CPU and a powerful graphics card. And all of that for less than 550$.
From case to CPU & graphics card & power supply, we cover everything. How to build your PC you can see here:
Best Budget 550$ Ryzen Gaming PC Build – The Parts List
|CPU||AMD Ryzen 5 1600||$140|
|CPU Cooler||AMD Wraith Stealth||$0|
|Motherboard||ASRock B450m Steel Legend||$85|
|RAM||HyperX Fury 16GB 2666MHz DDR4||$60|
|GPU||XFX RX 570 4GB GDDR5||$135|
|SSD||WD Blue 3D NAND 500GB||$60|
|PSU||Thermaltake Smart 500W 80+||$40|
|Case & Case Fans||DEEPCOOL MATREXX 30||$30|
CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 1600
The Ryzen 5 1600 is an excellent CPU for this build and is the heart of our PC.
It may be the smallest six-core in the repertoire, but the AMD Ryzen 5 1600 still makes it to third place on our list of the best mainstream CPUs.
The astonishing thing is that it still only costs around 140$. That makes it over 100 Dollar cheaper than the Intel Core i7-7700K, which also scores slightly worse in the performance rating.
AMD’s desktop processor offers a moderate 3.2 GHz as the basic clock rate and can boost a core to 3.6 GHz. Thanks to multithreading, the logical core number doubles from six to twelve.
Both L2 and L3 caches are extensive. However, the CPU doesn’t have an integrated graphics unit. A graphics card is therefore mandatory.
As expected, the Ryzen 5 1600 is just behind the faster 1600X in the benchmarks. Intel’s high-priced processors do indeed stand up to the AMD triple in the PCMark 8 test (Creative Suite) and are far ahead here. In return, the R5 1600 is equal or far ahead in every other test.
And that with a low 65 watts of thermal power loss. AMD doesn’t buy the performance with a loss of efficiency. With the right chipset you can also freely overclock the CPU.
With the Ryzen 5 1600, AMD offers a top-class desktop CPU at a budget price.
The test shows: Both demanding home users and gamers should be satisfied – despite low TDP. The high number of cores, generous caches and multithreading ensure this.
CPU Cooler: AMD Wraith Stealth
With the exception of processors in the high price segment, where manufacturers assume that the buyer will in any case install a potential third-party cooling system, CPUs usually contain a small cooler.
The “boxed cooler” is tailored by the processor manufacturer to the power dissipation of the CPU in such a way that it meets the minimum requirements.
But nothing more, because that would drive up the price – and cost the CPU cooler suppliers their sales.
The latter will be the main source of large sales, because boxed coolers are considered to be both inefficient and annoyingly loud due to their minimalist design.
Those who do not attach importance to a particularly quiet PC and use their own computer only for office applications anyway can overlook this.
But at the latest when it comes to overclocking the CPU or keeping the computing system as quiet as possible in all situations, a big cooler replacement is needed.
With the introduction of the Wraith Cooler, which is meanwhile also called Wraith Max, AMD wanted to fight against these prejudices.
AMD’s Ryzen processors are not equipped with the large Wraith cooler, but with the so-called Wraith Spire – or even in a slimmed down form the even smaller Wraith Stealth.
The Wraith Max, designed for CPUs with a TDP of 125 watts, could already show in the test that it cuts a very good figure for a boxed cooler.
Officially, it is also available separately with RGB lighting for Ryzen.
With the Wraith Spire, AMD has developed a boxed cooler for the Ryzen processors that exactly meets the thermal requirements of the CPU and can cool it adequately.
Cooler manufacturers can still breathe a sigh of relief because the Wraith Spire will not spoil their business: The boxed cooler is sufficient to cool the CPU sufficiently even under full load – but it has to turn up the fan, especially in summer or when the graphics card in the case is heating up.
It is by no means a small roaring cube, but by then at the latest there can be no more talk of whisper-quiet PC cooling.
To be fair, it must be noted that the cooler has to endure long phases with synthetic full load for the measurements in this test – in everyday office life with at best short load peaks, the Wraith Spire does its job reliably and without ever being negatively noticed by the volume – assuming a reasonable temperature-dependent fan curve, of course.
Great for every low budget bnuilds and it is free as it comes with the Ryzen 5 1600.
Motherboard: ASRock B450m Steel Legend
ASRock advertises the new product line with the slogan “hard as steel, truly legendary” and thus focuses on an adapted design compared to the existing portfolio without completely leaving out the functional range.
Thus, the mainboards of the Steel-Legend family should shine with an extraordinary stability and durability, as the manufacturer promises.
In addition, ASRock B450 Steel Legend and ASRock B450M Steel Legend can be divided into two zones by addressable lighting via RGB LEDs.
The lighting effects were generated under the facings of the rear connectors and the B450 chipset.
On the technical side, ASRock emphasizes in the Steel Legend series the specially designed power supply of the AM4 socket for processors from AMD’s Ryzen generation, which is supposed to provide more stability by means of better voltage converters and capacitors.
Furthermore, ASRock mentions the passive cooling solution of the M.2 slot for fast PCIe SSDs, which is now almost obligatory in the motherboard middle class, as a special feature of both new additions to the portfolio.
The two USB 3.1 ports (Gen2) for fast transfer rates of up to 10 Gbit/s are to be regarded as a real special feature in this class.
ASRock has published all technical details of the B450 Steel Legend and the B450M Steel Legend on the respective product pages.
This also shows, for example, that the Steel Legend family with B450 chipset supports memory up to DDR4-3.533 and the second M.2 slot of the ATX offshoot is only connected via two PCIe 3.0 lanes.
An amazing motherboard for a budget build.
RAM: HyperX Fury 16GB 2666MHz DDR4
In the search for the cheapest DDR4 kit with 2 × 8 GiByte you almost inevitably come across this kit, which instead of a heat sink only offers a large sticker covering all chips.
It scores not only with a very low price per GiByte, but is also the clearly cheapest kit with a guaranteed clock frequency of DDR4-2666. In addition HyperX guarantees the timings 16-18-18-38 at 1.35 Volt.
Despite the competitive price, the two single-rank bars offer a reasonable performance in everyday use, especially with overclocking: We bit our teeth out with the SK-Hynix chips (A-Die, 21 nm) in the test on DDR4-3333 at 1.20 Volt, but DDR4-3600 operation at 1.35 Volt was stable with very relaxed timings (21-20-20-60).
This 16-GiByte kit is therefore an excellent choice for true budget gamers.
Graphics Card (GPU): XFX RX 570 4GB GDDR5
The Radeon RX 570 ROG Strix OC from Asus in the test continues the model update of AMD’s new RX-500 series: The revised production process allows for higher clock rates (but with also increased power consumption).
In the case of the Radeon RX 570, AMD increases the base clock rate from 926 MHz to 1,168 MHz in comparison to the RX 470 – a remarkable increase of over 26 percent.
The boost clock, however, is only slightly higher, the clock rate increases from 1.206 to 1.244 MHz.
Since AMD offers no reference designs for either the Radeon RX 580 or the RX 570, custom designs from the various manufacturers have to compete with each other.
These have already shown with overclocked RX-470 models that the smaller Polaris chip can handle clock rates of up to 1,270 MHz.
The Asus Radeon RX 570 ROG Strix OC can assert itself razor-thinly in our gaming benchmarks with a constant 1.300 MHz chip clock in front of a RX 470 Red Devil from PowerColor, but it has the disadvantage in terms of volume due to the aggressive fan curve: It is clearly audible with 42.6 decibels and a lot louder than the RX 470 Red Devil with 38.8 decibels.
In return, the Asus graphic card stays eight degrees cooler under gaming load. We measured a maximum chip temperature of 72 degrees.
Custom designs of the Radeon RX 570 with 4.0 gigabytes of video memory are available in stores at a recommended retail price of 199 Dollar. The RX 570 ROG Strix OC from Asus is one of the most expensive RX 570 models with around 235 Dollar.
An RX 570 model with 8.0 gigabyte VRAM is already available from 250 Dollar.
Our verdict on the RX 570 therefore turns out similar to the RX 580: For owners of a Radeon RX 470, the change is by no means worthwhile, but if you still play with a Geforce GTX 960 from Nvidia or a graphics card from the Radeon HD-7000 series, the Radeon RX 570 offers a considerable performance boost for just under 200 Dollar.
The Asus RX 570 ROG Strix OC offers great performance at a fair price for budget builds.
Memory Storage (SSD): WD Blue 3D NAND 500GB
Western Digital is certainly primarily known for its HDDs. However, even Western Digital cannot ignore the signs of the times, SSDs are the future.
To get ready for the future, WD took over SanDisk some time ago and entered into a joint venture with Toshiba.
For its SSDs, Western Digital uses a similar naming scheme to its hard drives. Green for the slow and affordable models, Blue for the solid midrange models and Black for the high performance SSDs.
That WD Blue is an SSD that focuses on high performance and price becomes clear at first glance. Western Digital uses a very simple black plastic case with a blue “WD Blue” sticker.
This makes the SSD look, to be honest, not very high quality or noble. This impression is also supported by the very thin thickness and the somewhat sensitive looking connectors.
So this is not an SSD for someone who wants to build it into a “custom PC” with a side window, but rather for notebooks and the like, where even the slightly lower weight of the plastic case can be an advantage over aluminum SSDs.
But in the end, of course, it’s the inner values that matter most to us.
WD Blue relies on a Marvell 88SS1074 controller inside. This is a well-known and already proven 4 channel controller, which is known from SSDs like the Crucial MX300 or Kingston SSDNow UV400.
The Western Digital Blue scores solid to good in these tests. Practically I could read up to 437MB/s from the SSD and write to it with up to 429.8MB/s.
Yes, this is less than it achieved in the benchmarks, but that is normal so far. For small files the speed is of course a bit worse.
For example, when writing small files, the WD Blue reaches 168MB/s, while a Samsung 850 EVO reaches 140MB/s.
Fortunately, Western Digital does not seem to rely on a small SLC write cache for the WD Blue! Other tests have also confirmed that the SSD can keep its writing speed constant.
It can happen in everyday life that you unpack a larger ZIP file. How does the SSD perform here?
For this test, I have a 54GB Zip file (colorful file mix) on the SSDs copied and unpacked. I did this test on another PC with AMD Ryzen 1800x to avoid a CPU limitation.
The Western Digital Blue delivers exactly what the manufacturer promises. A solid to good performance at a fair price.
Yes, there are faster SATA SSDs, but practically the difference between a WD Blue and an almost twice as expensive Samsung 850 Pro is only 5-20%, which is absolutely negligible, especially if you don’t have an unlimited budget.
Power Supply (PSU): Thermaltake Smart 500W 80+
The Thermaltake Smart 500W made a solid overall impression in the test.
From a technical point of view, the Thermaltake Smart 500W offers overall average performance, without any particular slippage up or down.
Its efficiency is at an average 80PLUS bronze level, the regulation of its output voltages is stable and the ripple/noise voltages are also solid.
The 140mm fan in the Thermaltake Smart 500W is visually solid.
The switchable Smart-Zero-Fan mode, which activates a semi-passive fan characteristic curve, results in a switched-off fan only at lowest load (<10%).
It only plays a role when the system doesn’t need more than 50 to a maximum of 60 watts in idle.
The fan turns up comparatively quickly under load and can then be described as loud under full load with its distinct noise.
But this is surely also due to the fact that a bronze power supply simply produces considerably more waste heat than efficient high-end models.
In average air-cooled gamer systems, the Thermaltake Smart 500W shouldn’t attract attention under correspondingly high load, though.
All in all a great budget power supply for budget gamers.
Case & Case Fans: DEEPCOOL MATREXX 30
For less than 40 Dolar, Deepcool offers a housing with a glass side panel, while Aerocool offers two different towers with RGB lighting for the same price.
The unusual feature has to be bought in this price range, however, with cutbacks elsewhere.
Glass needs shorter graphics cards
Deepcools Matrexx 30 is currently a midi tower for the Micro ATX form factor, which currently costs around 35 Dollar and whose left side part is made of glass.
Behind it there is a simple interior made of 0.5 millimeter thin steel, which does without bezels or other features of higher price classes.
An externally accessible 5.25″ cage is available for drives, three 3.5″ HDDs are fixed in a cage at the bottom of the Matrexx 30; there are no separate slots. One 2.5″ HDD can be screwed behind the mainboard tray, another one on the HDD cage.
Due to the high cage with its construction, even for two slot wide expansion cards only 250 millimeters in length are available, high-end GPUs therefore do not fit or only fit selected ITX models.
The AMD RX 570 will fit without any issues.
In the case of coolers, the choice of high-end products is more limited, with only 151 millimetres in height available. For air exchange, a 120 mm fan is supplied at the rear, another one can be retrofitted behind the front.
According to the YouTube channel “Connectron Builds”, however, a second fan can also be mounted there, provided it is placed between the chassis and the front panel.
Conclsuion: 550$ Budget Ryzen Gaming Build
This machine can compete with any gaming console and will come ou as a winner performance wise.
You will be able to play any new game in 1080p on high graphics settings at 70 FPS and more. That is enough for 90% of gamers.
Also, the CPU & GPU are easy to upgrade in 3 years and new ones won’t cost that much considering you can sell the old ones.
The 16GB RAM are future-proof for at least the next 3-4 years. And if the RAM will be outdated you can upgrade it very cheaply.
This Gaming PC build with the Ryzen CPU and a solid GPU is an absolute console killer and gaming monster for the money you have to spend.