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Build a Fortnite or COD MWII Gaming PC on a $300-$400 Budget 2022

My Son and I still play Fortnite together on a regular basis. And when the new COD MWII dropped recently, we ran the storyline until the multiplayer came out.

While we do have a PS5, split screen simply isn't available for MWII. And since we both prefer using a mouse, we decided we'd update our old rigs to accommodate.

Our budget? Under $400 for each of us. And since my son's best friend prefers PC as well, we ended up upgrading 3 PCs.

If you're looking to upgrade too, here's a look at some of the better PC build options available in that price range.

Finding the right processor is key.

Finding the right processor is key.

What CPU Should You Buy?

Before I answer this question, you need to know whether you're purchasing a graphics card right now, or whether you'll be waiting until later. If you're not, this build definitely comes in under $400.

Not Purchasing a GPU right now?

In that instance, I'd recommend you go with a processor like the Ryzen 5 5600G. I've seen it run both Fortnite and COD MWII in 1080p. I'll give you a video below of just how this looks.

In my case we used an older GTX 970 and a GTX 1660 Super from a previous build. However, I was able to fit a decent GPU into this build for around $480 total which you'll see below.

Purchasing or Already have a GPU?

For me personally, and Tom's Hardware backs me up on this, I'd go with the Intel Core i3-12100F for strictly a gaming PC. The F series of processors don't have integrated graphics and therefore are cheaper with more value built in. This i3-12100F is a quad-core processor with amazing single-threaded performance.


Fortnite Ryzen 5 5600G Integrated Graphics Benchmark

Call of Duty MWII Ryzen 5 5600G Integrated Graphics Benchmark

Parts List for our $300 to $450 COD MWII and Fortnite PC Build

Part$300 AMD BuildIntel $400 to $500 Build

CPU

AMD Ryzen 3 3200G / *5 3400G

i3-12100F

GPU

iGPU add later

RX 6500XT (Go for 6600 if you can afford it for $30 more)

Motherboard

MSI A320M-A PRO

ASRock H610M-HDV

Memory

Silicon Power Gaming 2x8GB DDR4-3200

Silicon Power Gaming 2x8GB DDR4-3200

Storage

Inland Pro 480GB SSD

Inland Pro 480GB SSD

Case

Cooler Master MasterBox Q300L

Cooler Master MasterBox Q300L

Power Supply

Cooler Master MasterBox Q300L

Cooler Master MasterBox Q300L

Price as of 11/11/2022 (After Rebates)

$315

$322 no GPU $482.90 w/ GPU

Don't Forget the Rebates

Without Rebates, the parts list above would cost at least $40 more. So, be sure to look for deals where you can. Don't be afraid to mix and match the motherboard power supply and more to get the best deal.

RX 6500XT vs RX 6600 - which GPU is for You?

While a graphics card like the RX 6500XT is more in our price range, I recommend you spend $30 more to get the RX 6600 which a significantly better graphics card.

The 6500XT lacks a 64-bit memory interface, 16MB infinity cache, encoding support, and only gives you two display outputs for your monitors. So, when you're talking $160 vs $190(with promo code), it's hard to pass up on the much better performing RX 6600.

If those features aren't that important to you, then maybe the 6500XT will work just fine for you. Keep in mind that performance will be impacted as well. Watch the video below for more information on that.

RX 6500XT vs RX 6600 Benchmark Fortnite

As you can see in the benchmark above, the 3200G keeps you above 60FPS on these settings most of the time. Let's take a look at how much better you can do with the 3400G.

i3-12100 IGPU Benchmark

If you decide that you'd rather go with the i3-12100. Here's a look at some of the performance you'll get using it's UHD730 graphics. This is not a bad option if you know you'll be upgrading to a graphics card in the next couple of months.

As you can see, if you're trying to constantly be above 60FPS, the Ryzen 5 5600G does do a better job. That being said this GPU is the better performer once you add in a dedicated graphics card.

Final Thoughts

Overall either one of these solutions should work not only on Fortnite, but COD MWII, and Valorant. Additionally, it'll do a fantastic job on Wow, CSGO, Hearthstone, LOL, Apex Legends, and more!

Summary

Our budget for this build admittedly assumes a couple of things:

  1. You shop multiple manufacturers for the best price.
  2. You look for rebates for the power supply, case, and motherboard, and spend no more than $125 on all three of them.
  3. You spend no more than $50 on your hard drive. There are several 480GB solid-state drives in this price range as well as 1TB hard drives. (We prefer the solid-state option.

What Motherboard Should You Buy?

It's hard to put a lot of your budget into a motherboard because it won't make a lot of difference here in terms of performance.

And while Ryzen's processors are compatible with multiple generations of their processors, you'll need a BIOS update if you purchase an older motherboard.

MSI MAX Motherboards

MSI's MAX motherboards have an already upgraded BIOS so that not only you can purchase a less expensive board, but that also it's compatible out of the gate.

For this build, we're going with the MA320M-A Pro MAX. It's an inexpensive option, but it's compatible with our processor, supports our high-speed memory, and has a future slot for a graphics card if you choose to upgrade.

What RAM Should You Buy?

While I don't recommend a particular ram kit, I recommend you buy something that's over 3000MHz and at least 2x4GB. While 16GB would be ideal in the long-run if you plan to upgrade, it's more than fine for our current system.

For more information, you may want to check out my post on DDR4 kits for Ryzen processors.

Summary

Overall, we’re quite satisfied with the Ryzen 3 3200G. It’s a budget gaming CPU, that also allows you to upgrade to a higher-end graphics card down the road. It’s the perfect placeholder for those waiting for a volatile GPU market to settle down again.

If you're willing to spend around $50 more, the Ryzen 5 3400G will give you better performance and a better CPU to upgrade from later on down the line.

Use a 2x4GB or 2x8GB Kit for Memory With Ryzen 3 3200G

As an APU, the Ryzen 3 3200G thrives on dual-channel memory. I tested this a while back with my $150 PC build that used the AMD A4 7300 APU. Using a dual-channel, performance can be improved by around 50 percent! So, it’s clearly no joke here. If you go with an APU, don’t forget the dual-channel memory!

As we haven’t personally tested the difference between a single and dual-channel configuration here, we recommend Tech Yes City’s video of the 2400G here. He starts his comparison around the two-minute mark of the video, and the results are absolutely staggering.

Fortnite’s recommended system requirements are a bit more demanding than their minimum ones. So, you’ll want to adjust the game to some optimal settings.

Recommended System Requirements

  • Nvidia GTX 660 or AMD Radeon HD 7870 equivalent DX11 GPU
  • 2 GB VRAM
  • Core i5 2.8 GHz
  • 8 GB RAM
  • Windows 7/8/10 64-bit

Minimum System Requirements

  • Intel HD 4000
  • Core i3 2.4 GHz
  • 4 GB RAM
  • Windows 7/8/10 64-bit + Mac OSX Sierra

In spite of recommended and minimum system requirements here, Fortnite plays well with the Ryzen 3 2200G on medium settings. If you want to go beyond this, the 2200G will certainly support a mid-range graphics card.

Final Thoughts

The rest of the parts here are fairly interchangeable. We went with a decent 80 Plus power supply that has more capacity than you’ll need. This is ideal if you plan on upgrading to a dedicated GPU later on.

The DIYPC case mentioned above is cheap and gets the job done, but I’ve used many others that are better options at the $20 to $30 price point. This is especially true if you can find them on rebate.

I highly recommend a solid state drive for your system here. This makes everything from loading Fortnite or Valorant to your daily PC use so much faster. I can’t imagine having anything else. If you need to, add a high capacity drive later on or take one from a previously built computer.

What do you think of this build? Is it worth building? Would you take a different route? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below.

© 2018 Brandon Hart

Comments

Jonathan Alexis on June 26, 2020:

The ryzen 3 3200g is more than enough for low settings any game at 1080p if it's not something like battlefield 5.

Jacob on May 11, 2020:

Would you be able to play fortnite comoetive with ryzen 3 no stutters

Xavier Kitching on August 21, 2019:

What’s the video card