With a budget of $1,500, you are into the high-end range of gaming PCs. With a budget this high, we are much less constrained by the price of an item. We can afford to have perks like a high quality PSU, 100% SSD storage, a watercooler, an overclocked CPU, fast RAM, and so much more.
The combination of the newly released i5 9600K and the RTX 2070 will run any game at 1440P on maximum settings at over 100 FPS.
Best $1500 Pre-built PCs
Though we usually will crap on pre-built PCs pretty hard on this site, pre-builts in the $1500 range are actually pretty good.
The custom build we have here is still better than all of the $1,500 pre-built PCs — but not by that much.
However, the quality of parts like the motherboard, RAM, storage, and case on pre-builts is almost always inferior those of that on custom builds.
What is this Build Designed for?
With this monster build, you’ll be able to play any game on virtually any display — 1080P, 1440P or 4K — with good performance for years to come.
It would be irresponsible for us to make this build look ugly, as we have the freedom the budget to pick whatever internal components and case we wanted.
The large $1,500 budget allows us to choose top-tier components — a 3000 MHz RAM set, a fast SSD, an RGB case, and an 80+ Gold Seasonic PSU.
Our Gaming PC for Under $1500
|Intel i5 9600k||6 Core / 3.7 GHz|
|EVGA RTX 2070 XC||8GB GDDR6|
|Corsair H60||120mm AIO Watercooler|
|Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB||3000 MHz|
|GIGABYTE Z390 UD LGA 1151||DDR4|
|Crucial MX500 1TB||560/510 MB/s read/write|
|WD Blue 1TB 3.5″ HDD||7200 RPM | 6 Gb/S|
|Seasonic FOCUS 650W Gold||Semi-Modular|
|NZXT H500i ATX||RGB|
|$1,450 – $1,550||Price of Components Vary Day-to-Day|
Why Choose This PC?
There’s lot’s of websites on the internet giving our guide son what parts to pick, so why choose us when there’s so many other gaming PC builds out there?
We put heavy emphasis on reliability
We want your PC to last as long as possible, so we do not included parts with potential reliability problems, even the is higher for better quality alternatives. For example, we usually recommend the slightly pricey SeaSonic PSUs for their amazing reliability and warranty.
Frequent updates to our content
These build guides are dynamic and are updated very often as new products hit the market and prices on existing components change. You can always rely on this site to have the most updated content as we scan each PC build guide every few weeks.
Our PC builds are designed deliver superb performance in all areas, not just gaming
We know all of you plan to do more on your PC than just gaming, whether it is work, school, or just browsing the web. The most optimal setup for pure gaming is probably not good for everything else a desktop PC is used for. For this reason, we do not try to cram in the most powerful GPU we can find in a budget that can’t support it because we would be making unwarranted sacrifices in other crucial components.
As you can see here, we went slightly over $1,000 for this build. If you’re going to spend $1000 on a PC, paying an extra $50-60 isn’t a huge price if you want a truly well-rounded PC with quality parts.
Scroll to the bottom of this page if you want to see ways you can cut the price of this build to under $1000.
The i5 9600k is the newest 9th gen Coffee Lake Refresh flagship i5 CPU. It has six cores running at a max clock speed of 4.6 GHz on Turbo Boost, which is really good but still basically the same as the previous generation i5 8600k. You could switch this out with the 8600k and not notice any difference as the 9600k gives only a 3-5% performance boost compared to the 8600k.
Please overclock this CPU if you get it! If you don’t, just get an i5 8400.
For gaming purposes, there’s getting an i7 or i9 CPU is overkill, as games are much more dependent on graphics card power than CPU power.
Unlike the i5 9600k which is functionally the same as last gen CPU it replaced, the RTX 2070 provides a colossal ~40% performance boost over the GTX 1070 it supersedes.
This card will be able take anything you throw at it and give you 100+ FPS.
A basic AIO water cooler for your CPU that is pretty affordable as well. You don’t really need a water cooler even for overclocking because Intel CPUs are really good at thermal management now, but a $1.5k budget allows you to splurge on luxuries and show off your build a bit.
16 GB of really fast 3000 MHz RAM. You shouldn’t need more than 16 GB for gaming unless you are playing a very RAM hungry game like modded Cities: Skylines.
A full sized ATX Z390 motherboard for the new 9th gen Intel CPUs. You need the Z390 chipset to overclock K-series CPUs like the i5 9600k.
You can use a motherboard with the older Z370 chipset if you do a BIOS update.
The Crucial MX500 1TB is a fast SSD with a whole terabyte of storage. For a lot of people 1TB of storage is all they need. If you’re one of them, don’t bother buying any other drives.
1TB of hard drive storage if the 1TB SSD isn’t big enough for whatever crap you will have your PC.
650 watts of power is more than enough for the i5 9600k and RTX 2070, even after overclocking, especially from a high quality tier 1-2 power supply from the Seasonic FOCUS series.
This is the semi-modular version of the power supply. If you want a the same PSU, but fully modular, get the Seasonic FOCUS Plus 650. But if you aren’t going to use custom cables, there’s not reason to spend extra money going fully modular.
A very well designed and high quality case for just a hundred dollars. NZXT managed to fit a lot of tech into this relatively compact case which still manages to be a proper full sized ATX case.
What differentiates the H500i from the standard H500 is it’s integrated smart Fan and RGB light controller (RGB fans and light strips come with the case) that is accessed through the downloadable NZXT Cam software.
Upgrade Options for this Build
If anything in our $1500 build seems a little underpowered and you can expand your budget, here are some great upgrade options for each individual part.
Options to Reduce the Cost of Build
If you want to reduce the price of this built, you can actually save quite a bit of money ($100-$200) and get away with no measurable loss in FPS performance as long as you don’t touch the GPU or RAM amount.
Defined strictly, the PC part of the “personal computer” is what is inside the case. You monitor, keyboard, mouse, and speakers are not really part of your PC, but you PC is just a useless brick without these peripherals.
We could write 10,000 words on peripherals right here, but we to want to keep this section short. Here are just a few peripheral recommendations tailored just for this $1500 PC build.
If you already have a good mouse or a good set of speakers, just save your money and use those!
1440P G-Sync – Dell S2417DG
1440 x 2560| G-Sync | 165 Hz | 24″ | 1ms | HDMI | DisplayPort
The Dell S2417DG’s specs speak for themselves as this is a top-tier gaming monitor. Though the S2417DG is a relatively dated model, it’s impressive specs and integration of Nvidia G-Sync means that it is still a very expensive monitor — though still not nearly as expensive as newer G-Sync 1440P monitors like the ASUS ROG Swift PG278QR.
1440P – BenQ GL2706PQ
1440 x 2560 | 60 Hz | 27″ | 1ms | HDMI | Display Port
Here is a more affordable 1440P gaming monitor. The BenQ GL2706PQ doesn’t have G-Sync of the blazing fast 165 or 144Hz refresh rate, but still has nice perks like adjustable height and 1ms GTG response time.
One of the mistakes people tend to do is to pair a bad monitor with a good GPU, that’s just wasting potential.
Fans – Noctua NF-F12 PWM
120mm | 1500 RPM | SSO Bearing | 150,000 hours MTBF rating | 93.4 m³/h
If you don’t mind Noctua’s trademark beige coloring, there’s few options that beat the Noctua F12 in noise to performance ratio.
Keyboard – Redragon K563 Surya RGB
Mechanical | RGB | Cherry Blue Equivalent Switches | 104 Keys | 5 Macro Keys| Aluminum Base
A well constructed and affordable RGB mechanical keyboard.
Mouse –Razer DeathAdder Elite
16000 DPI | RGB | Optical | Wired
The Razer DeathAdder Elite is consistently the most popular gaming mouse and is probably the most iconic gaming mouse thanks to Razer’s marketing. Though it’s tracking and clicks are excellent, the DeathAdder Elite is really know for its ergonomics. Be sure to turn off mouse acceleration however!
Headset – HyperX Cloud Alpha
The HyperX Cloud Alpha is a pretty decent mid-range gaming headset — it’s the model that supersedes the Cloud II.
However, if you don’t have a good sound card in your PC, you will probably be better off with the Cloud II’s included sound card.
Speakers – Logitech Speaker System Z323 with Subwoofer
A set of basic PC speakers with a sub woofer.
Operating System – Windows 10
Buying an operating system sucks since it’s often a cost that doesn’t come to your mind until you realize your PC won’t run without a proper OS. While Linux is free, the vast majority of us use Windows — which with a proper license is far from free.
If you don’t feel the need to buy an official license from an official vender, there’s many ways to get Windows 10 for very cheap or even for free.
If you’re ok with having an unlicensed version of Windows that has a small watermark and limited customization but otherwise is 100% fully functional Windows 10, you dont even need a product key.
Just click on the “I don’t have a product key” when you are booting Windows from a flash drive.
Building Your New PC
If you’re building a PC with a budget as high as this, the chance that this is your first build isn’t that high.
However, that doesn’t mean this build will be the same as everything else.
The installation of AIO cooling systems on high-end systems is far different than a simple air cooler on most builds. You’ll also have the option of overclocking your CPU, which is something you defininetly don’t want to mess up.