The final month of spring is the time before the large-scale Taiwanese Computex exhibition, which PC component manufacturers usually choose to make high-profile announcements of their new products. This year’s event in Taipei is also expected to be a platform for interesting presentations. New platforms, processors, video cards, and so on. But mostly announcements are expected in early June, while the start of sales will have to wait. If you need a powerful system right now, then we offer you to consider the current variants of desktop builds in three price categories as part of the traditional “PC of the Month.

Basic gaming PC of the month ($600–750)

Processor Intel Core i5-12400F (6/12; 2,5/4,4 GHz, 18 MB L3) $135
AMD Ryzen 5 5600 (6/12; 3,5/4,4 GHz, 32 MB L3) $135
Motherboard Intel B760 (LGA1700) $90
AMD B550 (Socket AM4) $90
Memory 16 ГБ (2×8 ГБ) DDR4-3600 $45
Video card GeForce RTX 3060 12 GB/ GeForce RTX 4060 8 GB/ Radeon RX 7600 8 GB $320
Drive SSD, 1 TB, M.2 PCI-E $65
Case and power supply Middle Tower ATX, 550 W $60
Total amount for Intel-based PCs $715
Total amount for PCs on the AMD platform $715

Gaming monitor for the “Basic Gaming PC” from our partner MSI


PC of the month (May 2024)

The MSI G24C4 E2, based on a high-speed VA panel with a resolution of 1920×1080 and a response time of only 1 ms, will provide an excellent gaming experience for entry-level systems. Despite its low price, the 23.6-inch monitor has a refresh rate of 180 Hz and color gamut of 112% sRGB and 89% DCI-P3.

MSI G24C4 E2 gaming monitor

Processors. The nearest future announcements will not actually affect basic configurations, so it is quite possible to plan the assembly of entry-level gaming platforms with the existing range of components. This time we are strengthening PCs of this class by bringing back a system based on Intel solutions. In the latter case, we rely on the well-known Core i5-12400F chip (6/12; 2.5/4.4 GHz). What can make this 6-core processor more attractive? Well, of course, a price reduction. This is exactly what we have been seeing over the past month or two. The cost of the model has dropped by an additional $5-10, so now such a CPU can be purchased for the equivalent of ~$135.

The difference seems to be small, but consider that since the beginning of this year, this chip has already lost $30-35. This significantly strengthens Intel’s position in this class, and allows you to not look at Core i3, or at least do it without much regret. Of course, 4-core chips are even cheaper (~$100), but the price difference is no longer so significant as to make a choice in favor of a very compromise solution. And this is exactly what the Core i3-12100F (4/8; 3.3/4.3 GHz) is, which may be quite suitable for simple competitive games, while the 4/8 functional formula may not be enough for resource-intensive projects. For this reason, even in basic gaming configurations, we initially focus on 6-core processors. And the most affordable among Intel’s range here is the Core i5-12400F, which looks like it belongs in its place in such PCs.

What about the future Arrow Lake-S chips? Apparently, at the initial stage, the LGA1851 platform will be offered for higher-end systems. Intel is likely to keep LGA1700 relevant for quite some time, at least for entry-level PCs. In the previous leaks, we don’t even see a mention of the conventional Core Ultra 3 – only the more powerful Core Ultra 5/7/9. It’s worth reminding you that the new CPUs will also support exclusively DDR5 RAM. Although motherboards and modules of the corresponding RAM standard have significantly decreased in price, they are still more expensive than the corresponding DDR4 solutions. For affordable configurations, this is also a rather fundamental point.

Another interesting nuance of LGA1851 that needs to be clarified when using the platform for relatively inexpensive PCs. If the preliminary information that Intel is abandoning support for Hyper-Threading technology is confirmed, the conditional “Core Ultra 3” may have a functional configuration of 4/4. That is, 4-core chips that simultaneously process only 4 data streams. And this can potentially become a problem, even if the actual performance per clock cycle (IPC) of Arrow Lake-S chips will increase significantly. Higher-end models will be compensated for the reduction in computing threads by additional energy-efficient cores, but what Intel will offer for 4-core chips is intriguing.

It seems that the LGA1700 platform will remain the main platform for basic gaming systems for quite some time, so in this case you can safely choose the appropriate available components without waiting for future announcements.

PC of the month (May 2024)

The same goes for low-cost AMD-based systems. Here, the Socket AM4 platform still offers an excellent price/performance ratio, so it has no alternative in its niche. For the most affordable gaming PCs, AMD has a killer option – the Ryzen 5 3600 (6/12; 3.6/4.2 GHz), which at a retail price of $80 looks great as a starter CPU. However, to fully compete with Intel’s 6-core, we suggest stopping at the more modern and more productive Ryzen 5 5600 (6/12; 3.5/4.4 GHz). This model also gradually continues to decline in price and is currently offered for the same amount as its Intel counterpart – $135. In a direct confrontation, the advantage of a particular model would be determined depending on a particular task, but in general, these are worthy opponents that are very well suited for basic-level gaming systems. Even with a certain margin for this category of PCs.

Motherboards. For a platform based on AMD components, the most affordable motherboards are models based on the AMD A520/B450 chipset, costing from $60-70. However, in the absence of strict budget constraints, even for basic configurations, it is better to choose among models based on AMD B550. The latter have the advantage of supporting the PCI Express 4.0 bus, which eliminates any nuances regarding the use of video cards with the PCI-E x8 interface, which are most current entry-level models and even certain higher-end adapters. Ryzen 5 5600/3600 processors also support PCI-E 4.0, so if you choose a board based on AMD B550, the platform will allow you to implement the required bandwidth channel for video cards. However, models with a newer chipset are somewhat more expensive. They start at $70-80, and a certain choice appears when the budget increases to ~$100.

If you want to save money by choosing simpler AMD A520/B450 boards, it is advisable to look towards relatively inexpensive graphics cards with PCI-E x16 interface. Such models are available on the market. But the combination of a PCI-E 3.0 card and a graphics adapter limited to the PCI-E x8 channel can have unpleasant consequences. In most cases, the performance loss will be non-critical (0-5%), but in exceptional situations where PCI-E bandwidth is essential, the fps drop can be even up to 20%. That’s a pretty good prospect. If you don’t want to worry about possible fps losses due to the limitations of the system bus ROM when launching your next project, it makes sense to pay extra for a motherboard with PCI-E 4.0.

The Intel platform also faces a similar dilemma. The most affordable motherboards based on the Intel H610 chipset support PCI-E 4.0, but do not allow the use of RAM in modes beyond those limited by the CPU specifications. If the limitations of the DDR4-3200 mode don’t bother you, you can get by with a simple model for ~$75. If you want to use DDR4-3600+ modules, you’ll have to look at more expensive boards like Intel B760/B660. In this case, the budget should be increased to $90-100.

Video cards. For basic gaming systems, the familiar trio of graphics cards remains relevant – GeForce RTX 3060 12GB, GeForce RTX 4060 8GB and Radeon RX 7600 8GB. These models from NVIDIA are currently at the top of the video card popularity rankings, which are preferred by users of price aggregators and online shoppers in Ukraine. It is GeForce RTX 3060 and RTX 4060 that actually share the first and second places in the top 10 graphics adapters. The moderate price and generally good price/performance ratio attract a large number of players.

PC of the month (May 2024)

The fairly close retail price of the graphics cards ($320+) makes the final choice somewhat difficult, but you will have to make it based on your own priorities and preferences. If you are sure that 12 GB of memory is more important for the potential period during which the video card will remain relevant, then the choice is quite obvious – GeForce RTX 3060 12 GB. Also, this model will be a more logical purchase if you have saved some money on the AMD platform and have chosen a more affordable card based on AMD A520/B450 chipsets with only PCI-E 3.0 support. As for GeForce RTX 4060 8GB, this is an option if you want to get DLSS 3.0 support. In addition, in cases where 8 GB of memory is quite enough, the newer model will usually be ~10-15% more productive and economical than its predecessor.

And of course, don’t forget about the Radeon RX 7600 8GB variant. It is a very worthy opponent for the GeForce RTX 4060 8 GB, although to increase its attractiveness, the price tags of the series models should be more confidently reduced to ~$280-300. With a relatively small difference in cost with that of NVIDIA adapters, the latter are more often preferred.

Optimal gaming PC of the month ($1200–1400)

Processor Intel Core i5-12600KF (6/12+4; 3,7/4,9 GHz + 2,8/3,6 GHz) $185
AMD Ryzen 5 7500F (6/12; 3,7/5,0 GHz, 32 MB L3) $190
Motherboard Intel B760 (LGA1700, DDR5) $150
AMD B650/A620 (Socket AM5) $150
Memory 32 GB (2×16 GB) DDR5-5600/6000 $110
Video card GeForce RTX 4070 12 GB / Radeon RX 7800 XT 16 GB $620
Drive SSD, 1 TB, M.2 NVMe, PCI-E x4 $90
Case and power supply Middle Tower ATX, 650 W $130
Total amount for Intel-based PCs $1285
Total amount for PCs on the AMD platform $1290


Gaming monitor for the “Optimal Gaming PC” from our partner MSI


PC of the month (May 2024)

MSI Optix G27CQ4 E2 27-inch gaming monitor with a VA matrix with a curved surface (1500R) and a resolution of 2560×1440 pixels. The 170Hz refresh rate and 1ms response time provide an optimal gaming experience.

MSI Optix G27CQ4 E2 gaming monitor

Processors. Looking at the further reduction in the cost of the Core i5-12600KF (6/12+4; 3.7/4.9 GHz + 2.8/3.6 GHz), one cannot expect a better option for the Intel platform. The iconic 12th Generation Core chip is already available for the equivalent of $185, so this model is clearly the best price/performance ratio in this category right now. Given the gestures previously uncharacteristic of Intel, it seems that despite the rather strict traditional approach to chips of previous generations without significant price concessions, the manufacturer still allows itself to deviate from the inherited dogmas if necessary. Well, why, this tactic works flawlessly for a competitor, and given that the situation in the DIY segment is such that new approaches are needed to balance, even if they do not fit into the usual framework, the price factor has always been one of the most effective.

If for some reason you have concerns about using a processor in a new system that was introduced in 2021, the Core i5-13400F (6/12+4; 2.5/4.6 GHz + 1.8/3.3 GHz) or Core i5-14400F (6/12+4; 2.5/4.7 GHz + 1.8/3.5 GHz) can be considered as suitable options for optimal configurations. The first one can already be purchased for the equivalent of $200, the “updated” model with minimally increased frequencies will cost $220. Both will be slightly slower than the Core i5-12600KF, but more economical under load and come with a basic cooler. Both of the latter arguments are rather weak in the context of a gaming platform, but it’s good to have a choice.

What about the upcoming LGA1851 platform for optimal configurations? Usually, for this category of systems, we focus on the available models of the Core i5 series. There are already references to the chips of the future “five”, which in the next generation will be called Core Ultra 5. The junior model of the series will obviously be the Core Ultra 5 240 (F) processor, the technical characteristics of which are not yet known for certain. So far, there is a preliminary benchmark – a 10-core chip that will include 6 performance cores (P-Cores) and 4 energy-efficient computers (E-Cores). If the assumption about the lack of Hyper-Threading support is confirmed, we will get a CPU with a functional formula of 6/6+4. That is, it will be a 10-core 10-threaded processor. It’s very interesting how Intel will compensate for the lack of HT, which usually significantly increases performance in multithreaded tasks.

As for the LGA1851 in the context of mid-range systems, we’ll have to wait. The launch of the new platform will probably start with the presentation of top-end solutions, and mass-market chips and motherboards for them will be offered only after some time. Therefore, if you plan to build a PC quite urgently, it makes sense to choose from existing components for LGA1700.

Last time, we considered a system based on Socket AM4 as a possible option for the optimal AMD configuration. The company really supports the relevance of this platform, trying to offer solutions with an attractive price/performance ratio. However, when it comes to a new PC, Socket AM5 is obviously more promising. Yes, these solutions are somewhat more expensive, but the difference in the cost of the necessary components is usually already acceptable for midrange systems. Moreover, price optimizations are also being implemented here, which further increases interest.

PC of the month (May 2024)

One example is the Ryzen 5 7500F (6/12; 3.7/5.0 GHz), which is already available for ~$190. In the vast majority of games, this chip will be faster than the 8-core Ryzen 7 5700X, which we used in April’s PC of the Month configurations. If you’re a fan of chips with integrated graphics, then the most affordable option is the Ryzen 5 7600 (6/12; 3.8/5.1 GHz) for ~$210. This option will not be superfluous, especially in the current turbulent times when a generator or charging station can be used to power the system. In such circumstances, the ability to switch to a cost-effective embedded video core will come in handy.

Motherboards. For the Intel platform, we suggest focusing on boards with the Intel B760 chipset. Although Intel chips are versatile in terms of RAM support, this time we are going back to DDR5. Yes, motherboards for this RAM standard, as well as the modules themselves, are somewhat more expensive than a combination with DDR4, but for gaming systems, the additional bandwidth can add fps in certain games, and the DDR5 kit can be used later during the next upgrade.

The cheapest motherboards from ASRock/Biostar/Maxsun based on the Intel B760 chipset with DDR5 support can already be purchased for the equivalent of $100. However, this is definitely not a recommendation. More or less equipped models are offered for $130-150, and it is these devices that you should focus on.

A mid-range AMD platform can be built using a board based on the AMD B650. There are also a few examples of the most affordable models (~$100), but with the same $130-150, you can already pick up a device of the appropriate equipment and functionality. Of course, using the Socket AM5 platform by default implies working with DDR5 RAM.

Video cards. There is a great range of graphics cards for mid-range gaming systems on the market today. The Radeon RX 7800 XT 16 GB, which is offered from $580, looks very powerful here. This is probably the best option now, if you don’t have any personal prejudices against AMD discrete graphics or don’t use software with CUDA optimizations for your workflows. It is in the context of a gaming graphics card that the Radeon RX 7800 XT now offers good opportunities, especially if you use a monitor with 1440p or even 4K mode.

The balance of characteristics without obvious weaknesses and 16 GB of memory add to the effect of a certain power reserve. It’s hard to compete with NVIDIA’s rivals in terms of ray tracing, though. By the way, it is the fundamental improvement of RT processing modules that should become one of the key features of the next generation AMD RDNA 4 graphics architecture. As for the graphics of this generation, according to preliminary rumors, within the Radeon RX 8000 line, developers are focusing on mid-range solutions, investing less effort in top models. However, these are just assumptions that have no practical basis.

But what AMD’s current graphics cards have to deal with nowadays is very strong competition from NVIDIA solutions. In addition, given the significant advantage in distribution of the latter, it is AMD that has to adapt to the conditions imposed by the opponent. It seems to be doing quite well, but the actual market share of discrete graphics cards is an inexorable thing and a qualitative indicator of the success of certain products. In a recent analysis of the popularity of video cards in Ukraine, only two series of AMD graphics adapters made it into the top 10 (one of them is the Radeon RX 7800 XT 16 GB). Some more solutions are getting closer to the top ten, but in general, the situation is 80/20. So AMD will have to continue to make extra efforts to change the situation.

PC of the month (May 2024)

If we return to NVIDIA graphics cards for the current optimal configurations, then the GeForce RTX 4070 12GB remains a balanced solution. Yes, the video card has 12 GB of memory instead of the desired 16 GB, but this is not a problem, but a feature that is not so difficult to adapt to. Usually, the available capacity is enough for 1440p even at maximum settings. In those frankly rare cases when you need more for another game in this mode, you can meet the requirements without significant visual differences in the picture by making simple manipulations in the settings. Otherwise, GeForce RTX 4070 remains a great solution. Good performance and power consumption up to 200 watts. The 5-10% that it is inferior to the RX 7800 XT, the video card will cover with a margin after activating ray tracing, where it is 20% faster than its opponent.

GeForce RTX 4070 12GB is usually a bit more expensive than AMD’s offer. The models in the series start at retail from $600-620, while Radeon RX 7800 XT has a $20-30 lower entry threshold. To be honest, though, this difference is unlikely to be decisive when it comes to buying a video card in this class.

RAM Despite the fact that analysts are constantly warning about the rising cost of memory chips, which should directly affect the price of RAM modules, the current price tags of existing DDR5 kits remain fairly stable. We have been recommending 32 GB of memory for optimal gaming configurations for a long time. This capacity will certainly be enough for even the most demanding projects.

Simple dual-channel DDR5-5600/6000 kits can already be purchased for $110. Yes, this is still more than $75, which is enough for a set of the same capacity, but of the DDR4-3600 standard. But, again, in the scale of the total cost of the system, the difference no longer seems decisive. In the case of the AMD Socket AM5 platform, this should be taken for granted, and for LGA1700, it is an opportunity to further accelerate the gaming system, which is worth taking advantage of.

Progressive gaming PC of the month ($2000+)

Processor Intel Core i5-14600K (6/12+8; 3,5/5,3 GHz, 2,6/4,0 GHz) $350
AMD Ryzen 7 7800X3D (8/16; 4,2/5,0 GHz; 96 MB L3) $410
Motherboard Intel Z690/Z790 (LGA1700) $230
AMD B650 (Socket AM5) $200
Memory 32 GB (2×16 GB) DDR5-6000 $130
Video card GeForce RTX 4070 Ti SUPER 16 GB / Radeon RX 7900 XT 20 GB  $900
Drive SSD 2 TB, M.2 PCI-E 4.0 $170
Case and power supply Middle Tower ATX, 750 W $210
Total amount for Intel-based PCs $1990
Total amount for PCs on the AMD platform $2020


Gaming monitor for the “Progressive Gaming PC” from our partner MSI


PC of the month (May 2024)

MSI MAG 323UPF is a top-of-the-line 32-inch gaming screen with a high-quality IPS matrix. The panel has a resolution of 3840×2160, a refresh rate of 160 Hz, extended color gamut (126% sRGB and 95% DCI-P3), and supports HDR. The monitor is equipped with a Type-C port (90W PD) with the ability to power and recharge portable devices. 

MSI MAG 323UPF gaming monitor

Processors. For powerful Intel-based gaming systems, we continue to recommend the Core i5-14600K/KF chips (6/12+8; 3.5/5.3 GHz + 2.6/4.0 GHz). The top-of-the-line processor in the series strikes a balance between the required performance, power consumption, and price. Although belonging to the Core i5 line may be misleading in terms of the required cooling system efficiency. To cool the CPU, an air supercooler or even a liquid cooler will not be superfluous. Under a multi-threaded load, power consumption can reach 180-200 watts, so you can’t get away with half measures. Of course, in games, the figures will be significantly lower, but platforms of this level are not just for gaming. Unlike the situation with top-end Core i9s, there have been no precedents for unstable operation of Core i5 platforms, which is another argument against rational sufficiency.

PC of the month (May 2024)

For obvious reasons, the version of the chip with integrated graphics is becoming more relevant than usual. The Core i5-14600K modification costs ~$30 more than the KF modification. Additional costs are always unpleasant, but this will allow you to work on your PC much longer in conditions of power supply limitations.

As for Intel’s top chips, the company has already provided motherboard manufacturers with its recommendations for adjusting firmware. The main problem here is the virtually unlimited modes of CPU operation, which are not limited by current, voltage, or power consumption. Board manufacturers usually initially use profiles that allow processors to operate at the limit of their capabilities when the chip, regardless of the nature of the load, is maximized without time limits. These are the conditions that can lead to malfunctions.

To avoid potential instability, Intel requires manufacturers to provide a default BIOS profile that meets standard processor specifications. In turn, this mode leads to a significant decrease in CPU performance. So this solution may not be final either. It looks like there is still an ongoing discussion between manufacturers about which parameters should be considered basic. It is possible that the appropriate BIOS profiles will depend on the direct capabilities of specific motherboard models.

Those planning to build an advanced system would probably be interested to know about the features of the upcoming LGA1851 platform. Unfortunately, there is not enough reliable information here yet. It is still quite general information, preliminary leaks and assumptions. According to the latter, we initially expect the announcement of Core Ultra 9 285K, Core Ultra 7 265K, and Core Ultra 5 245K chips. The top model will have a configuration with 8 productive cores on the Lion Cove architecture and 16 energy-efficient Skymont cores – 8P+16E. The acceleration of P-Cores up to 5.5 GHz is also mentioned. The upcoming “seven” will offer the 8P+12E formula, which means it will lose four E-Cores and will probably have lower operating frequencies. And the older model of the Core Ultra 5 series will be satisfied with the 6P+8E combination. All enthusiast models have a base TDP of 125W. Arrow Lake-S desktop chips will also receive a hardware NPU module with up to 50 TOPS performance for AI acceleration.

It is very likely that Intel will still take an important step by refusing to support Hyper-Threading. Therefore, it is very interesting how this will affect the chips’ capabilities in multithreaded tasks. Usually, HT added ~20% of performance in such conditions. Will the Lion Cove architecture make it possible to compensate for such “losses”? Especially given the potentially lower CPU operating frequencies. We hope that Intel will be able to pleasantly surprise us here.

The platform is expected to be previewed and launched in the fourth quarter of this year (October-December). However, the manufacturer promises to reveal a lot of details about LGA1851 and Arrow Lake-S chips at Computex 2024, which will take place in early June. So, if you don’t plan to postpone building a new system, it is quite possible to choose suitable options with predictable capabilities within the LGA1700 at a reasonable price. If the purchase of such a system is a matter of the medium term, it makes sense to at least wait for clarifications regarding the future Intel platform. This time, the upgrade will be quite radical, and will not be limited to an additional +5-10% performance.

This time we are charging the AMD system with the most powerful gaming processor in the manufacturer’s range – Ryzen 7 7800X3D (8/16; 4.2/5.0 GHz). The model is still quite expensive ($400+), but the presence of 96 MB of L3 cache usually has a significant impact on performance in games, so the opportunity to get the best is worth it. If this option is not important, you use 1440p/4K graphics modes, and additional savings are a priority, you can consider options with 8-core Ryzen 7 7700/7700X chips. They will do the job quite well, saving ~$100 in your wallet, but the effect of owning a top-of-the-line solution will be lost.

AMD is also actively preparing to update its desktop processor lineup. Future chips will probably be labeled Ryzen 9000 and will be available this year. According to optimistic forecasts, new CPUs may be officially announced even at the same Computex 2024 exhibition. Or, at least, they will reveal details about the technical characteristics of the Granite Ridge family. The processors are designed for the Socket AM5 platform and will be compatible with existing motherboards. Most of the latter have already received the corresponding firmware update. Although Ryzen 9000 will retain the same design layout and offer a 16-core configuration in the top-end variant, the chips will receive a new Zen 5 computing architecture.

We will know the details of the available improvements very soon, but we expect that this time the architectural changes will not lead to a significant acceleration. There will be an increase in performance per clock cycle, but according to preliminary leaks, the overall IPC increase will be in the range of 10-12%. Even taking into account the possible change in the manufacturing process and the increase in operating frequencies, it is unlikely that such accelerations can stop those who have already decided to buy Ryzen 7 7800X3D. We will probably also see Ryzen 9000 with 3D V-Cache later on, but initially it will be the classic variants with an integrated 32MB L3.

In any case, if you’re looking for advanced configurations, it makes sense to wait for Lisa Su’s presentation at Computex, part of which will be dedicated to the new Ryzen 9000 desktop chips. Having assessed the advantages of the new models and the timing of the chips’ availability, it will be easier to draw up an action plan for the future system.

Motherboards. When choosing a platform for an Intel-based system, we suggest paying attention to boards with Intel Z790 chipsets. In this case, the type of supported memory is not even discussed, as in this class, we focus exclusively on DDR5 models. The range of memory boards for the previous standard is much smaller, and they are usually labeled with “DDR4/D4” directly in the device name.

The updated Intel Z790 boards are mostly offered with enhanced power stabilization modules (VRMs), which is useful when using top-end CPUs. So even if you don’t plan to overclock your processor, a certain amount of power will not be superfluous. If you equip your PC with an efficient cooling system and later feel the enthusiastic urge, the Core i5-14600K/KF can be significantly accelerated, although the relative performance gain is unlikely to justify the increase in power consumption. Still, the “sporting interest” can be satisfied, and rationality is not really the point here.

If we are already thinking about the future LGA1851 platform, it should be noted that Intel will try to increase the role and importance of Thunderbolt. It seems that Thunderbolt 4 may become the standard interface for motherboards based on Intel Z890. Top models will even be equipped with Thunderbolt 5 with the help of an additional Barlow Ridge controller. A port with a data transfer rate of up to 80 GB/s cannot be called an option of the first necessity, but it can be useful if necessary.

Intel recently introduced Thunderbolt Share, a software package that allows you to connect two PCs equipped with Thunderbolt 4/5 ports. Fast file transfer, synchronization, and sharing of peripherals (including a monitor). You can connect both PCs directly with a suitable cable or use an additional docking station. The implementation of Thunderbolt Share needs to be tested, but at first glance, it seems to be an attempt to provide practical benefits to high-speed ports that are usually used inefficiently.

PC of the month (May 2024)

For the progressive AMD platform, you can choose a suitable motherboard among the models on the AMD B650. The functionality of the chipset fully satisfies the needs of even the most demanding user. Such models even allow you to overclock the processor yourself, but for Ryzen 7 7800X3D this is almost an irrelevant option, except that you can play with Precision Boost Overdrive (PBO) and Curve Optimizer (CO) if you really want to.

The existing Socket AM5 boards will work with Ryzen 9000 processors. Along with the Granite Ridge chips, developers will probably offer some kind of platform update, at least motherboard manufacturers will cope with this task. However, commercially available boards will support future CPUs. The only thing you need is to update the BIOS.

Video cards. If you don’t look for ways to save money when building a powerful gaming platform, then the GeForce RTX 4070 Ti SUPER 16 GB and Radeon RX 7900 XT 20 GB remain the rational choice for this category of systems. The initial stabilization of prices for new NVIDIA models has already taken place, although it did not bring the desired effect. Even the entry-level RTX 4070 Ti SUPER models will cost more than $900, while boosted models with more efficient coolers may cost $1000+. This is the price to pay for the opportunity to own a powerful video card with 16 GB of memory, which allows you not to worry about a possible lack of local RAM. Here we can mention the GeForce RTX 4060 Ti 16GB, but we emphasize the definition of “powerful graphics card”.

In general, the GeForce RTX 4070 Ti SUPER is only about 10% inferior to the GeForce RTX 4080 and almost catches up with the latter with some luck after additional overclocking. Moreover, enthusiasts were able to verify that the updated “Ti” can even outperform the RTX 4080 after replacing the memory chips, which stably operate at an efficient 26,000 MHz. But that’s just a whim for extreme gamers who are more interested in the process of achieving their goals than in the result and practical benefits.

Radeon RX 7900 XT 20 GB are presented in almost the same price category, except that interesting models can already be counted on for $900. Video cards of this series don’t need any special introduction. The only thing I would like to see is a slightly lower retail price tag. The updated GeForce RTX 4070 Ti SUPER has come close to the performance of the RX 7900 XT in classic rendering and has a significant advantage after activating ray tracing (+20-25%). So, for a certain balance, additional discounts on AMD models are desirable. Yes, the latter offer an additional 4 GB of memory, but this usually does not provide a practical advantage in games.

As we have already noted, when working on the RDNA 4 graphics architecture, developers are focusing on significantly improving the ray tracing processing unit. This is definitely not the strongest point of current AMD models. And if in the case of mid-range and especially entry-level graphics cards, additional image “improvers” are rather considered exotic, then having a powerful, expensive system, I would like to get the appropriate opportunity to play with maximum comfort even after activating high-quality RT.

Therefore, we are counting on a significant strengthening of the corresponding block in the notional Radeon RX 8000. We hope that despite the possible emphasis on mid-range models, AMD will still offer more powerful graphics cards as part of the next generation. After all, the main competitor is not sleeping here, preparing its solutions.

Leaks regarding the upcoming NVIDIA RTX 50 line are still quite controversial. Initially, there was information that only the flagship of the upcoming series, the GeForce RTX 5090, would appear this year, but later informed sources indicated that we would see two graphics cards with Blackwell architecture – GeForce RTX 5090 and GeForce RTX 5080, and it is highly likely that the latter model will be available first, and the top-end solution will be available in a few weeks. One way or another, new NVIDIA graphics adapters are likely to appear by the end of 2024. There are no estimated dates yet, except for the generalization “Q4 2024”. Computex 2024 is likely to be the place where official information and numerous leaks about future components will be released.