Boson 4.0 – $400 Gaming PC Build (2017)

– Hey guys, this is Austin, and welcome to the Boson So, for $400, not only are you getting a system that’s going to be easy to build, especially if this is your first time building a gaming PC, we’re also getting a lot of power. So to start with, we have the Thermaltake Versa H15 case. So this is going to be micro-ATX, which means that we have plenty of room for all of our components plus a little bit of upgrading in the future. But more importantly than that, it’s going to be easy to work in. So, if I pop it open here, you can see that I’m looking at the wrong side. But in theory it’s easy to work on if I come at it from this way. So around back, there’s a 120mm exhaust fan, and up front there’s a USB 2 port, as well as a USB 3. So while this might not be the most fancy case in the world, it does have some cool features, including a removable dust filter for your power supply, for when you put this on carpet and it gets all gross and dusty.

For power, we have the 430 watt EVGA supply. Now, especially when it comes to budget builds, you do need to be careful what kind of power supply you’re getting. So, while sure, there are cheaper options than this, this is kind of the heart of the build. You do not want to put a very cheap supply in your build and have it explode. Maybe not explode, but seriously, you do want to at least get something decent. And with 430 watts of capacity, this should be more than enough for the build as is.

So once we get the power supply slid in here, you’ll see that it actually fits pretty well. And while this case doesn’t have the best cable management in the world, we actually do have some room back here to route some of our cables. For the motherboard, we have the MSI B250M Pro-VD. Because motherboard names are awesome. What is cool about this is it is with that B250 chipset, supporting not only Skylake, but also the brand new Intel Kaby Lake processors.

So, while it’s a little bit of a basic board, we do have some cool features, including check out that PCI slot. So I’ve actually never seen one that’s metal. The idea is that this is gonna give some more protection when you’re say, traveling with a computer, and you’ve got that heavy graphics card that’s trying to rip the whole thing out of the slot. Trust me, it happens.

On top of that, we also do have an M.2 slot, which not only supports SSDs, but also the new Intel Optane. Powering the Boson is the new Intel Pentium G4560. Now, typically Pentiums haven’t been good for gaming builds, but what’s special about this is that it supports hyper threading, essentially turning this into a Core i3 that costs a whole lot less. So even though it might be cheap, don’t underestimate the Pentium. With a clock speed of gigahertz, it actually really isn’t that far off from even the higher end chips like the Core i5, depending on the game. But generally speaking for a build like this, this is gonna be pretty much perfect. So this is actually going to be my first time trying the G4560. Now, as a guy who’s done just a couple of budget builds, I’m really excited to see what this thing can do, but from everything I’ve seen, it is no joke as far as performance goes.

Next up we have memory, and here we’re using eight gigabytes of Hyper-X Fury. So the cool things about Skylake and Kaby Lake chips is that they do support DDR4. So while it’s not really a huge difference compared to DDR3, it is a little bit quicker, and hey, I’ll always take a couple extra frames when I can get ’em. So this is going to give us eight gigabytes of RAM in the Boson, which is fine for now, but if you ever do want to upgrade, we do have an additional DIMM slot, so if you ever want to get this guy up to 16 gigabytes, it’s no problem. So things are coming along pretty nicely so far, however next up, we have the graphics card, which in this case is an EVGA GTX 1050. So the GTX 1050 is another one of these parts that really does make a ton of sense for budget builds.

For about $110 or so, we’re getting a lot of horsepower here. And especially when you pair it with that Pentium, we should be good for some pretty decent 1080p gaming. While it packs a punch, the 1050 is a pretty small little card. Now that’s not exactly a bad thing. Not only does it easily fit in our case, with tons of room to spare, but it also is completely powered from the motherboard. So while we have all of our connectors for more beefy graphics cards, this guy pulls all the power it needs straight from that PCI slot.

And that is about it. However, not but not least, we have an SSD. And yes, this is an SSD in a $400 system. So it is 2017, and I am a firm believer that you should not be buying or building a computer without an SSD. It makes such a huge difference to every day usability of a computer, so much faster, so much less frustrating. So for this, we actually went with a Kingston SSDNow UV400, and the only real downside with this is that it’s only 120 gigabytes. So if you don’t mind going just a little bit over the $400 budget, you can upgrade this to 240 gigabytes, or, since this is a gaming PC, and we have plenty of room for expansion, you can add an additional hard drive here to have extra stuff like games, files, that kind of thing, so you kind of get the best of both worlds.

And it’s as simple as that to build the Boson 4.0. So now I’m going to do a little bit of cable management, get this guy all up and running, and we’ll see what it can actually do. So this is Grand Theft Auto 5 running on the Boson. So right now we’re playing at 1080p High settings, and we’re getting anywhere between about 70 to 100 frames, depending on what we’re doing. So this is a 144hz monitor, so that extra frame rate actually does look nice and smooth, but if you’re playing on a standard display, you can actually crank the setting up even more and still get a very smooth output.

Next up we have Overwatch, and this is one of those games that really does look better on PC versus console. Not only do the graphics look nice at 1080p on high, we’re also getting a super smooth 80 to about 100 frames per second. Now, I think, I mean, sure, it’s totally playable on console, and even if you’re playing at 60hz, it’s fine, but being able to have the option of actually really cranking that graphics setting up, while still getting a nice solid frame rate, is really helpful. For $400, the Boson is a pretty solid little gaming PC. So as always, the links to everything you guys need to actually build this guy will be in the description. I’m curious, what do you guys think about the latest Boson? Let me know in the comments below, and I will catch you on the next one.

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