The $2000 custom PC build budget is the sweet spot between high-end and absurd enthusiast specs (with practically no budget ceiling). It’s a great price point for when you want to spoil yourself dearly while avoiding that guilt at the back of your mind for spending so much on something that might become outdated in five years or so.
But one thing is for sure here, a $2000 custom PC build will render the most realistic consumer-grade graphics even at 4K. It’s not the best of the best, granted; but it’s enough to make the majority of PC users green with envy.
Of course, if you plan on using it for work, then do know that there are better options out there with a more robust CPU though you will need to raise the budget ceiling a bit. But for general use and even intermediate digital media work, then our $2000 custom PC build recommendation will more than suffice.
Do note that this build only covers the essential components such as:
- CPU / Processor
- GPU / Graphics Card
- CPU cooler
- RAM / Memory
- Power Supply Unit / PSU
- Case / Chassis
The monitor, mouse, keyboard, speakers, and other peripherals aren’t part of the rounded-off $2000 budget range.
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Intel Core i5-13600K
- Trades blows with more expensive CPUs
- Amazing value
- Great at both gaming and productivity
- High boost speeds
- Backwards compatible with 12th-Gen motherboards
- 14 total cores
- Motherboard needs to be higher-end to take advantage of its strengths
- Older Windows versions might have problems recognizing the E-cores
- Runs hot, needs a dedicated cooler
- 14 cores (6 P-cores + 8 E-cores) and 20 threads
- Integrated Intel UHD Graphics 770 included
- Up to 5.1 GHz unlocked boost speed
- 125W TDP
Intel is back in it again with the trophy as it takes the lead once more in the mid-range CPU segment. Its best contender for the i5 tier, the Core i5-13600K puts the competition to shame and even defeats the AMD Ryzen 7 7700X which was supposed to compete with the Core i7.
It’s hard not to recommend this one especially if you want a good balance of gaming and productivity performance. It’s considerably better than Intel’s previous 12th Gen i7 offering so there’s no reason to go for that one instead of the 13600K.
And if you find yourself looking for more performance to match higher CPU tiers, then you can overclock the 13600K with ease.
PowerColor AMD Radeon RX 7900 XT
- Good power efficiency
- Large memory pool
- Great 4K GPU
- Lots of new generational features and tech
- Not too bulky
- Ray Tracing performance is still significantly lagging behind
- A bit noisy
- Confusing naming schemes courtesy of AMD
- Boost Clock: Up to 2400 MHz
- Video Memory: 20GB GDDR6
- PSU requirement: 750 watts minimum
- Dimensions: 11.42 x 5.04 x 2.02 inches
Nvidia’s RTX 4000 series has so far disappointed many customers either in performance or price, or both. As such, AMD Radeon takes the win here. The RX 7000 series cards might not offer performance to match Nvidia’s plug burners, but they do have more reasonable pricing and better efficiency.
Sadly, the RX 7900 XTX models have inflated price tags even at this moment and it’s a little out-of-budget. So, we’ll have to make do with the PowerColor AMD Radeon RX 7900 XT which is a bit weaker. By no means does that imply that the card is inadequate; it’s still more than capable of running the latest games at 4K and 60+ FPS.
ASUS Prime Z690-P WiFi LGA1700
- Good for overclocking
- Comes with WiFi and Bluetooth
- Bulky and robust VRM cooling solution
- Plenty of M.2 slots
- Good color contrast for style
- Comes with one M.2 cover
- Support for ARGB via Aura Sync
- DDR5 compatible
- Color scheme might not work for certain builds and cases
- Intel LGA 1700 socket
- DDR5 compatible
- 4 RAM slots
- ATX form factor
- 3 M.2 slots
For the motherboard, you might as well go for a DDR5-ready board since the difference is quite substantial compared to DDR4. DDR5-ready motherboards are still a bit expensive but they’re worth it since they usually pack in the best features and tech.
This particular Asus motherboard is well-known for its good overclock potential if you’re planning to push the 13600K past its boost thresholds. But you probably don’t need to do that since the performance boost from the DDR5 components alone is a game-changer.
- Performance is on par with more expensive air coolers
- Cools up to 260W of power
- Two included fans are stellar at cooling and are silent
- All installation tools are included
- Large and bulky, you might need to change fan orientation to avoid RAM interference
- Heat dissipation power of 260W
- Dimensions:129x138x160mm, 43mm RAM height clearance
- Compatible with LGA 1700 (ask for a bracket)
- Two Fans
Some of you might prefer to liquid cool your i5-13600K instead, but our choice of the PC case (more on that later) makes the DeepCool AK620 a more ideal option. It remains one of the best air coolers on the market right now, capable of matching the cooling performance of more expensive brands like Noctua.
It’s also astonishingly silent despite having two high-power fans pushing the heat out. Besides, you’re not rocking an i7 so the DeepCool AK620 shouldn’t have trouble cooling the 13600K.
Kingston Fury Beast 32GB (2x16GB) 5200MT/s DDR5 CL40
- Fast and snappy
- Relatively low-profile
- Reasonably-priced, relatively
- Good for overclocking
- Still somewhat expensive
- 5200 MHz
- CL40 latency
- 32GB (dual channel)
With this kind of RAM, Google Chrome will no longer expectedly crash or slow down even after you open 20 tabs in five seconds. That’s how convenient it is to have DDR5 RAM, and for a budget of $2000, you get the privilege of this new generation of memory modules.
For gaming and productivity, the benefits are stellar and are more readily apparent compared to DDR4. In most cases, it can even increase framerate due to the better multitasking allowance and lower CPU latency.
Western Digital 1TB WD Green SN350
- Good warranty
- Shock resistance against accidental bumps and drops
- Green shroud
- No heatsink
- Fast NVMe performance for daily computing needs — up to 3,200MB/s
- SSDs offer shock resistance against accidental bumps and drops
- Western Digital 3-year limited warranty
- 1 TB
Storage is thankfully a component of custom PC building that you can cheap out on, especially if it’s an SSD. You don’t really need blazing-fast speeds here if all you’ll be doing is gaming or the usual digital media application.
Thus, the Western Digital WD Green ought to suffice. The green hue is a bit difficult to fit into monochromatic PC builds if you are too much about aesthetics, but thankfully, our motherboard in this build has a heatsink cover.
Cooler Master V850 Gold V2 Full Modular
- Fully modular, cleaner cables
- Quiet fan when the hybrid mode is active
- Good warranty
- A bit pricey
- Included cables are still untidy compared to custom cables
- Fully modular
- 80 PLUS Gold Efficiency
- Semi-Fanless with Hybrid Switch
- 135mm Fluid Dynamic Fan
AMD recommends a PSU that can draw 750 watts from the wall when it comes to its two RX 7900 cards and that’s for the reference model. For the OEM partner models, you might need something beefier since most of them come overclocked with more powerful fans.
It stands within reason that an 850-watt PSU should be enough. The Cooler Master V850 Gold V2 is certainly one of the more competitive options in its weight class. It will provide enough power for both the RX 7900 XT and the Core i5-13600K even if the latter is overclocked.
Fractal Design Torrent Compact TG
- Best default air cooling in the market right now
- Comes with two expensive fans
- Clean look with top PSU shroud
- Aggressive yet elegant front mesh design
- Non-angular design makes case less blocky or generic
- Thick steel panels
- Heavy and bulky
- Cable management is more difficult than usual
- Dimensions: 17.72 x 8.74 x 18.39 inches
- ATX, mid-sized
- Front mesh and filter
- 5-6 fan slots
- PSU Shroud at the top
Finally, we arrive at the case, which is the most defining component when it comes to aesthetics. Of course, due to the budget bracket, we’re not sacrificing cooling for aesthetics. With the Fractal Design Torrent, you get the best of both worlds, be it performance or cooling.
It’s by far the best case out there when it comes to default ventilation and air cooling. Much of this status in the hierarchy is attributed to the fact that the Torrent comes with two monstrous 180mm fans in the filtered mesh intake.
Coupled with the DeepCool AK620, this case will provide all the air ventilation your desktop PC could ever have while also looking cool (no pun intended).
Frequently Asked Questions
How long will this desktop PC stay relevant?You can expect it to have no problems running the latest video games at maximum graphics for at least five years, likely more.
Is this PC build good for 4K?Yes. It was made for 4K.