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Building a Budget PC with the Radeon RX 460: Part 2

Author:
Manufacturer: AMD

Performance and Impressions

This content was sponsored by AMD.

Last week in part 1 of our look at the Radeon RX 460 as a budget gaming GPU, I detailed our progress through component selection. Centered around an XFX 2GB version of the Radeon RX 460, we built a machine using an Intel Core i3-6100, ASUS H110M motherboard, 8GB of DDR4 memory, both an SSD and a HDD, as well as an EVGA power supply and Corsair chassis. Part 1 discussed the reasons for our hardware selections as well as an unboxing and preview of the giveaway to come.

In today's short write up and video, I will discuss my impressions of the system overall as well as touch on the performance in a handful of games. Despite the low the price, and despite the budget moniker attributed to this build, a budding PC gamer or converted console gamer will find plenty of capability in this system.

Check out prices of Radeon RX 460 graphics cards on Amazon!!

Let's quickly recap the components making up our RX 460 budget build.

Our Radeon RX 460 Build

  Budget Radeon RX 460 Build
Processor Intel Core i3-6100 - $109
Cooler CRYORIG M9i - $19
Motherboard ASUS H110M-A/M.2 - $54
Memory 2 x 4GB Crucial Ballistix DDR4-2400 - $51
Graphics Card XFX Radeon RX 460 2GB - $98
Storage 240GB Sandisk SSD Plus - $68
1TB Western Digital Blue - $49
Case Corsair Carbide Series 88R - $49
Power Supply EVGA 500 Watt - $42
Monitor Nixues VUE24A 1080p 144Hz FreeSync - $251
Total Price $549 on Amazon; $799 with monitor on Amazon

For just $549 I was able to create shopping list of hardware that provides very impressive performance for the investment.

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The completed system is damn nice looking, if I do say so myself. The Corsair Carbide 88R case sports a matte black finish with a large window to peer in at the hardware contained within. Coupled with the Nixeus FreeSync display and some Logitech G mouse and keyboard hardware we love, this is a configuration that any PC gamer would be proud to display.

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Continue reading our performance thoughts on the RX 460 budget PC build!

Though not perfect, the cable routing and design of the case makes for a clean interior with the large CRYORIG M9i taking center placement.

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AMD's Radeon RX 460 from XFX is somewhat hidden but it remains the heart of this gaming system.

So how does it perform? 

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I selected a handful of games ranging from modern shooters to recent puzzle games and highly popular multi-player titles (feel free to guess which is which). I'm a big fan of Rocket League, and even at 1080p and the High Quality settings, the RX 460 and the rest of our budget build are able to maintain over 100 FPS on average. In Overwatch, maybe the most popular team shooter, we see frame rates crossing the 115 FPS mark. 

On Doom, running under the Vulkan API, the RX 460 is able to run at 1080p at the Low present but still maintain 68 FPS on average, resulting in an amazingly impressive gameplay experience for the system build price. Finally, on The Witness, I increased the image quality settings to High, giving me about 50-55 FPS on average, but demonstrating the ability for FreeSync integration to smooth out otherwise juttery gaming experiences.

Check out prices of Radeon RX 460 graphics cards on Amazon!!

From a productivity stand point, this system will handle complex, multi-tab browsing without concern and can be a great tool for moderate photo and video editing as well. If you are interested in multiple display configurations to get your work-groove on, this RX 460 card supports three monitors, as long as you can utilize one DisplayPort, one HDMI and one dual-link DVI connection. 

My time with this little experiment has been eye opening. More often than not I am building systems and running tests on graphics cards that cost as much as this entire PC. And while a whole hell of a lot of fun, it's not realistic. From an everyday consumer perspective, a budget of $600 is spot on, and a build with a card I previously had no experience with has left me impressed.

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I have seen comments point out that you can easily upgrade this experience further by investing in a Radeon RX 470, RX 480 or another higher cost GPU. Without a doubt, spending a bit more on your GPU will result in higher frame rates, better image quality or both. But the point of this experiment is that you don't have to do that to get a high quality gaming experience on day one. Loyalties and fan bases aside, the Radeon RX 460 can get you gaming at a high level for a low cost.

Now...you might be wondering where that contest and giveaway is located. After all, I did say I was giving this PC away, right? Fair, you caught me. Jump right over to this contest page to see how to enter! Good luck and thanks to AMD for sponsoring this project!


January 17, 2017 | 11:27 PM - Posted by grayhoose

i think it works.

January 18, 2017 | 01:02 AM - Posted by Melarchivals (not verified)

I have always built with AMD parts. They are what I can afford. I would classify this machine as a great start up rig for gaming. There's plenty of room for upgrading later, as your budget allows.

January 18, 2017 | 12:04 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

With some 4 core Ryzen SKUs becoming available after the 8 core Ryzen SKUs arrive it will be time to go all in with Ryzen, Polaris or Vega, and AM4 and see some new low cost total system Price/Performance records set. I'm seeing some online rumor postings and articles about a 4 core non SMT enabled 4 core/4 thread Ryzen CPU SKU(Probably a binned part) that may be the price/performance hit for low cost gaming in an all AMD low cost system build.

And also there is the Ryzen/Vega APUs to consider when they are available for the desktop (for some very compact mini/micro desktop SKUs) and mobile systems for laptops. I think that Vega's HBC(High bandwidth cache/HBM2) IP on any Ryzen/Vega APU SKUs with its on HBM2 memory is going to be impervious to any laptop OEMs gimping using a single channel to DIMM Based DDR4 memory. Ditto for any Desktop APUs(35 watts+ SKUs) crammed into the mini/micro desktop SKUs in some Mac Mini sized/slightly larger with better cooling sized form factor systems!

So a Zen/Vega APU with a single stack of HBM2(4GB) should be able to manage any extra texture swapping in the background via Vega’s HBC controller from slower, even single channel, DIMM Based DRAM. This will allow any Zen/Vega APU’s integrated GPU/Graphics to work mostly from the HBM2 as well as the larger Vega L2 cache on and Vega based graphics on an APU. It will all be managed by the HBCC or whatever unified CPU/GPU memory controller/HBCC hybrid memory controller that AMD will device for its Zen/Vega APU systems.

January 18, 2017 | 01:04 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

P.S any dual Vega GPU(2 GPU dies on a single PCIe card) that make use of AMD's new Infinity Fabric IP may be seen as a single GPU by any computing system! So those CF scaling issues will not be a factor with any Vega(duo)/Infinity Fabric IP based SKUs. AMD could maybe even use the Infinity Fabric IP with some Polaris refreshes/updates, but more than likely AMD will just push on to using Vega as quickly as possible for the extra features that the Vega micro-arch will provide.

So Vega/Infinity Fabric IP is leading towards NAVI and multi-GPU smaller/modular dies scaled across an interposer to creat a hardware scalable NAVI line of interposer based GPUs/HBM2(or Newer) memory and even APUs that scale from mobile to workstation/HPC/server systems, and even exaflop/exascale systems.

January 25, 2017 | 12:42 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

So does this mean building a 600 dollar computer right now is not worth it ? That if I wait I can get a much better performance for the same price ? I no nothing about computers and don't understand what you said at all lol

January 18, 2017 | 01:38 AM - Posted by Buyers

Don't forget that you need to add ~$100 for a windows license. Yes, i know Steam on linux is a thing (i'm on Arch linux as i type), but almost none of the big name games people want to play are available on Linux.

January 18, 2017 | 09:53 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Thankfully, this is changing, though still slowly.
Civ6(Soon), Deux Ex, Total War: Warhammer, Mad Max, XCOM2. It's not there yet, but the stone has finally been rolling.

February 3, 2017 | 07:36 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

You can always get Windows 10 non activated you don't get all the personalization but you can play games

January 18, 2017 | 02:50 AM - Posted by Edward Tavares (not verified)

I can't believe is only costs $540 without the monitor. That is awesome!

January 18, 2017 | 03:08 AM - Posted by JohnGR

Nice little card. I hope Ryzen to be as good as it should be, so next time an AMD sponsored system to also have an AMD CPU in it. This system could end even cheaper with one of the new 4thread Pentiums.

January 18, 2017 | 03:20 AM - Posted by Garry (not verified)

No drama from AMD about using an Intel CPU, seeing they were paying for it?

Don't disagree with your choice, just curious!

January 18, 2017 | 03:59 AM - Posted by kal` (not verified)

Ryan was going to do this build anyway if that wasn't clear from Part 1. The RX 460 is a sub $100 - £100 GPU, being paid off for such a cheap experiment wouldn't be within his best interest, nor would it be of his nature if it were a high-end build, neither. PCPer is very straightforward with its audience. If that wasn't evident enough by Ryan saying the video is sponsored. Show a little gratitude, these guys are great.

January 18, 2017 | 05:44 AM - Posted by JohnGR

Not everyone in the world cares only about Vega and Titan cards. Most people care about RX 460s, R7 240s, GT 730s, GTX 1050s etc. They want gaming capabilities for their PCs, but they don't want to pay much for those. And they want to know that they are not throwing away $50-$150 for no reason.

Doing articles like this one, is in the site's interest if most other sites are just focusing on showing RGB glowing super expensive cards. it doesn't really matter if it sponsored or not. What matters is how many views an article like this will have in the next months.

January 18, 2017 | 01:54 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Radeon Pro Duo is now selling for $799, and with Vega incoming the RX 470s may start to fall in price some more along with the RX 480s. At least users can get 2 RX 460s and CF them when their price hits the tops of the affordability charts very soon! I'd like to see some dual RX 460 benchmarks done because in a few more months there will be fire sale pricing on the RX 460s based cards and some better pricing on the RX 470s to maybe make the same price range as this RX 460 system build in that few months time period.

It's going to be very affordable to update to at least AMD's Polaris based GPU systems for a great price and to have at least GCN "4.0" based GPUs. Vulkan/DX12 is going to play very nice with GCN of at least GCN/"3.0" for a good while so having the GCN "4.0"/Polaris cards being replaced by Vega in a short while is going to make Polaris even more attractive for budget system builders.

January 18, 2017 | 06:31 AM - Posted by Garry (not verified)

I am grateful for the content and effort that goes into it, there was no implication otherwise in my question..

I don't suggest Ryan or his team succumb to such pressure, I trust their integrity too much to think that.

You are reading too much into it. Maaaaate.

8^)==

January 18, 2017 | 09:32 AM - Posted by Ryan Shrout

They were very open about me selecting the hardware without them getting in the middle of it. Kudos to them!

January 18, 2017 | 10:17 AM - Posted by maonayze

Yes, not everyone is interested in the super duper gaming behemoths that only enthusiasts can afford. It is indeed a great PC for anyone coming into PC gaming. Plenty of upgrade potential for beefing up those 1080P games and you get Freesync too. Nice article Mr Shrout and PC Per. More like this please, so that everyone will know that PC gaming can be done on a budget with a little know how. :-)

January 18, 2017 | 12:19 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

nice experiment, but hardly qualifies as PC gaming. Absolutely necessary to spend the extra $50 and get a better card.

lets point out that a ps4 is running $250 and you can buy a windows laptop for $300 and have better PC portability & better gaming... and in this scenario, you actually get Windows as part of the cost. include the cost of windows and you could also buy an amazon fire & raspberry pi to go along with your ps4 & amazon fire.

still appreciate the experiment but there is a major disservice to explicitly leaving out benchmarks for games that swallow those 2 GB.

January 18, 2017 | 06:22 PM - Posted by Anonymously Anonymous (not verified)

"...nice experiment, but hardly qualifies as PC gaming. Absolutely necessary to spend the extra $50 and get a better card...."

Let's do a fact check here: the PC featured in this article is in fact a Windows PC that can run PC games on it. It might not be the level of performance that you want, but it's still pretty good for the budget.

AND, it can be upgraded and modified!

January 18, 2017 | 12:29 PM - Posted by YTech

Ryan > Any issues with the power/reset button on the Corsair case?
Had issues with their case for a build I did for someone. Had to install small springs to get it to work properly because it would stick. Read other people had similar issues. One person filed the piece of the trigger button. I didn't want to file the wrong part and don't have any files.

Thanks :)

January 18, 2017 | 01:06 PM - Posted by Quentin (not verified)

Excellent videos and articles. It's good to keep in touch with the low end.

January 18, 2017 | 06:34 PM - Posted by Voldenuit (not verified)

Great build Ryan.

Worth noting to all prospective budget builders that the RX 470 is going for around $150 right now and an absolutely great upgrade from the 460 for $50 more. You can find some for $140 after rebate, even.

Also, the GTX 1050 is about $110 and similar performance to the 460 (win some, lose some), so if your heart bleeds green, you're not left out of budget PC gaming (will have to give up on cheap VRR monitors, though).

January 18, 2017 | 07:06 PM - Posted by Etrain

I like it,clean and efficient.

January 18, 2017 | 07:44 PM - Posted by Anonymous Nvidia User (not verified)

Could have compared it to iGPU performance to see if it is worthwhile to spend $100 on it over one. Also compare some aging video cards from a few series back to it to see if upgrade is necessary.

With nothing to measure against it or performance to $ ratios or performance to watt ratios of current cards this ends up being not as informative as it could have been.

It's cool that someone will get a free computer out of the deal.

January 19, 2017 | 05:24 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Looks great

January 19, 2017 | 05:24 AM - Posted by Gus (not verified)

Looks great for the price.

January 19, 2017 | 12:56 PM - Posted by Topjet

You forgot the cost of the mouse, lol

January 19, 2017 | 02:45 PM - Posted by Babboon2469

Awesome video I myself have built my own systems for the reason you point out the costs of the parts can be found cheaper if you look around I have just given my daughter my system cause I just wasn't using as of late but would love a chance to win your system now lol might have been fate to give her my system then received your contest notice so thank you and yes a very big thank you to AMD for allowing you to build and test their parts and then to give away such a nice system for the prize Love AMD & pcper.com

January 20, 2017 | 07:56 AM - Posted by 1stPCyetToBuild (not verified)

this is not internationally applicable, i am sure of which you are aware, for example in my area this would cost just above $600 iff you get most of the part in OEM i.e for almost cheapest prices or by considering cheaper alternatives.

January 20, 2017 | 03:31 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

how much difference would a higher end cup make?

January 20, 2017 | 07:15 PM - Posted by Brett Hood (not verified)

well done Ryan

Very nice looking system there great price for budget gamers and pretty decent performance too.

January 20, 2017 | 11:13 PM - Posted by Stephen H (not verified)

Ryan, Ryan, Ryan.

Surely you know by now that whenever anyone posts a bunch of numbers on the Internet someone out there will check their addition.

From the prices you list:

$109
$19
$54
$51
$98
$68
$49
$49
$42
Total: $539

Monitor $251

Grand Total $790

Happy to be of service; my bill - 1 newly built PC with Ryan's DNA on it.

January 21, 2017 | 01:09 AM - Posted by nathan02042

Dose it have wireless internet capability?

January 23, 2017 | 01:36 AM - Posted by Joe (not verified)

I think for most people it still needs Wifi, Windows, Keyboard, and Mouse. Kind of misleading not to include those in the price

January 24, 2017 | 12:55 AM - Posted by paulpaulok (not verified)

I think when building a budget rig, you just don't consider Keyboard and Mouse, cause you know there are generic of those you can buy that for 2$ I think. And WIFI isn't a part of your RIG. Windows also are given, you can Install it illegally you know, torrents everywhere, yah' these are needed but technically speaking these things/peripherals was already given and you don't need someone to tell you to buy that thing. Just sayin'

January 25, 2017 | 03:31 PM - Posted by Joe (not verified)

Ok, you also don't usually get told what monitor to buy but they did here, AND he says it's a good first rig (so the uninformed might not realize they will be paying 100 - 200 dollars more than the 'advertised'). Other than that, your best response is to pirate Windows and that "wifi isn't a part of your rig." Okay.... so how does your rig receive and transmit the wireless signal then? I don't know why you bothered to defend them. Besides all this, the prices he used were 1) Sales prices which aren't available now and 2) Incorrectly added up, as another person mentioned.

January 24, 2017 | 08:24 AM - Posted by Daniel Angulo (not verified)

OK I own a R7 260x I can run everything above 30 fps with an I5 4th gen and 8gbs but an upgrade with be amazing I own a mini ITX and I was thinking on getting a new GPU but I cant afford it right now I just want the GPU card.... pleaseeeeee

January 24, 2017 | 09:18 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Awesome

January 25, 2017 | 12:37 PM - Posted by Russell weaver (not verified)

Looks amazing really want to build it now.

January 25, 2017 | 12:39 PM - Posted by Russell weaver (not verified)

If it can run some bo3 I'm good. Want to try out the new mods.

January 25, 2017 | 12:39 PM - Posted by Russell weaver (not verified)

If it can run some bo3 I'm good. Want to try out the new mods.

January 26, 2017 | 09:34 PM - Posted by jordan (not verified)

hi

January 27, 2017 | 02:08 PM - Posted by Rick Brumfield (not verified)

You left out OS on the shopping list which would likely be Win 10, that's another ~$100. And no Blu-Ray (I know a lot would say you wouldn't need it but if you live in a poor to no broadband area or truly want a console replacement, its a must have), so another $50. And as much as I love system building, sometimes its cheaper/easier to just modify a prebuilt.You can get a lenovo tower with an i5, 8GB memory, 500Gb HDD, no graphics card, & no optical drive for $570. Then just get the card &, if you need it in your area, the Blu-ray drive. About the same cost as this build, but a better proc, a warranty, an OS, wifi, keyboard, & mouse. I don't think you really start saving a lot of money on builds until you start hitting higher end.

January 30, 2017 | 12:16 AM - Posted by Win10 IS FREE - DIDUKNOW? (not verified)

Can get Win10 for Free...
Google it, Legit, the download is from Microsofts own site.

January 31, 2017 | 01:44 PM - Posted by Ajesh Radhakrishnan (not verified)

That was absolutely an amazing job Ryan

February 12, 2017 | 08:12 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Hey, I went ahead and bought this build and it's my first computer build ever. I can't seem to get the graphics card to fit. It's being blocked by the wall how have I messed up?

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