I'm just a small-time guy working a normal job as a physician assistant. My passion is building PCs and testing/reviewing PC hardware.
AMD Ryzen Budget PC Build: November 2017
AMD Ryzen 3 1200 CPU
At the heart of this build is the AMD Ryzen 3 1200 processor. The Ryzen 3 1200 is a quad core processor, meaning that it has four cores and four threads of processing power. The processor is clocked at 3.1GHz base clock and can turbo to a max core clock speed of 3.4GHz. This processor, as well as the rest of the Ryzen line by AMD, is capable of being overclocked and it is quite easy to do so, even with the stock cooler. I have been able to overclock this little processor to 3.75GHz on the stock Wraith Stealth cooler with ease. I have been able keep temperatures very stable and low at around 35 degrees celsius at idle and 75 degrees celsius at load. For just around $30, you could add an aftermarket cooler such as the Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO and possibly push this processor to 3.9-4.0GHz. At any rate, this processor sports a total L3 cache of 8MB, 384K of L1 cache, and 2MB of L2 cache. It is built on the 14nm architecture and fits into the AM4 socket. The Ryzen 3 1200 draws a total power of 65 watts and can go to a maximum temperature of 95 degrees celsius. Per AMD, the processor supports 2667MHz DDR4 RAM speed in dual channel configuration. MSRP on this processor is around $109 and you can get this processor for around $105. $100 if you're lucky. It's an outstanding processor for the price given the performance you get out of it.
ASRock AB350M Motherboard
ASRock AB350M Micro ATX Motherboard
Next, we have the motherboard. For this budget build, I have chosen the ASRock AB350M Micro ATX AM4 motherboard. This motherboard comes in at around $60 and is a very basic AM4 motherboard with the B350 chipset. There are 2 slots for 288-pin DIMMS; DDR4 RAM compatible with speeds ranging from 2133MHz to 3000MHz and up to a maximum of 32GB. The motherboard supports RAID but does not offer onboard video. There is no support for Crossfire or SLI but in this budget build, there is absolutely no need for either of those features. There are four SATAIII and 6 GB/s ports. With the layout of this board, if you use the included Wraith Stealth cooler, it will be a tight fit with the RAM and there are only support for 2 case fans; a 3-pin and a 4-pin fan. All this being said, it is a cheap board that is perfect for a Ryzen budget build and allows you to overclock relatively easy.
G. Skill NT Series RAM: 2133MHz DDR4
G. Skill NT Series RAM
RAM prices are currently in a weird state and very expensive compared to this time last year and it’s hard to find a good deal. So, in a budget build like this, I say just grab the cheapest RAM you can find and if it overclocks, great, if not, oh well. For this budget build, I am going with the G.Skill NT Series RAM. This is a 2 module kit of 4GB per module for 8GB total RAM. This RAM is clocked at 2133MHz, is DDR4, and is supported by both the CPU and the motherboard. With a $75 price tag, this is about the best you will do. It’s nothing more than standard RAM and is nothing fancy and has no special heat spreaders or anything else special about it.
Western Digital Cavia Blue 1TB 7200RPM Mechanical Hard Drive
Western Digital 1TB Caviar Blue Hard Drive
For storage, I went with the trusty Western Digital Caviar Blue, 1TB, 7200RPM mechanical hard drive. As with the RAM, there is nothing special about this except it has become the go to storage solution for budget builders worldwide. This hard drive works on the SATAIII 6 GB/s interface and carries a 64MB cache. The hard drive is from Western Digital, a trustworthy company with an established history of excellence in computer storage. I will not include an SSD in this build given that it is a budget build and currently pricing does not allow for it to keep this under $500.
EVGA GTX 1050 2GB Video Card
EVGA GeForce GTX 1050 by nVidia
For the video card, I went with the EVGA GeForce GTX 1050 2GB GPU. This GPU is nVidia’s middle of the pack offering for around $110 currently. The GTX 1050 offers 2GB of GDDR5, 128-bit VRAM with a core clock of 1354MHz and a boost clock of 1455MHz. The card has 640 CUDA cores on the PCI Express 3.0 interface. There is 1 DVI port, 1 HDMI port, and 1 DisplayPort. All in all, this is a great little card for budget build like this. If you wanted to go with an AMD GPU currently, you’d be looking at an RX560 card which is on par with the GTX 1050 for around the same price, maybe a little more expensive. Personally, I’d go with nVidia on this one.
EVGA 500BQ 500 watt Power Supply (Semi-Modular)
Power Supply and Case
Finally, powering this build is the EVGA 500BQ, 500 watt semi-modular, 80+ Bronze certified power supply. EVGA is a well known and well respected company that makes great and reliable power supplies. The 500 watt PSU will give you the ability and the headroom to upgrade in the future whether that’s the processor or the GPU and only costs around $50. This PSU will be housed along with the other components inside of the DIYPC Ranger R4-R ATX Mid Tower case. This case comes in at around $35 and has a lot to offer at a small price. There are 2 external 5.35” drive bays, 2 internal 2.5” drive bays, and 4 internal 3.5” drive bays. The case supports ATX and micro ATX mother boards and has 3.0 USB port in the front. GPUs up to 16.54” are supported in this case. This is a fantastic budget case and has a side window to show off your budget parts.
So, there we have it, the November 2017 AMD Ryzen Budget PC build. Coming in at under $500, this is a fantastic entry level PC that can compete with current generation gaming consoles on the market. I will have an Intel budget build as well as a mainstream AMD Ryzen and mainstream Intel PC build list coming in the next couple of days. So, please drop by and check those out too. Thanks for stopping by.
Hardware Unboxed AMD Ryzen 3 1200 Review
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
William Cobb (author) from Columbia, SC on January 19, 2018:
Prices at the time didn't support a 1050 Ti purchase for a strictly budget computer build. Also, same for mobo. The ASRock B350 mobo is a decent in budget builds. Personally, I'd spend a little extra on both components and pick up maybe a b350 Tomahawk and a GTX 1060 3gb gpu as there are some combo deals right now on Newegg with Mobo+1060 3gb.
name on January 18, 2018:
msi 1050 ti X is better and get a good mother board