Best gaming PC build for Horizon Zero Dawn in 2020

The end of 2020 will be fruitful in terms of gaming hits. The long-awaited PlayStation 4 exclusive Horizon Zero Dawn is coming to PC on August 7th. The system requirements of the game turned out to be quite democratic, and in this blog we will collect two budget builds for playing Horizon Zero Dawn at medium settings. And two mid-level assemblies – for maximum settings. As usual, there will be builds for both AMD and Intel.

The minimum system requirements on the game page on Steam look like this:

It is not yet known what performance and at what resolution the recommended PCs will provide. The PC version of the game promises support for resolutions up to 4K and an unlocked frame rate, but what kind of computer will be required for 4K / 60FPS mode, we can only guess.

Low system requirements will allow us to build inexpensive and affordable PCs. But, as is the case with other hit games, experience suggests that a little headroom for heavy scenes in the game does not hurt. After all, it is very unpleasant when FPS sags in the most crucial places – mass battles and boss fights.

Another conclusion from the system requirements is that PC games have reached such a size that each new game requires about 100 GB of free space on the drive. This trend must be taken into account, and if you usually have several games installed, it is better to choose a 500-1000 GB SSD.

Horizon Zero Dawn is not as spoiled by the press as Cyberpunk 2077 , so it is not yet known whether the new product will support Ray tracing and DLSS technologies . But, given that the GeForce GTX 1060 graphics card is listed in the recommended requirements, it most likely will not.

In the assembly for maximum settings, we will take the video card Palit GeForce GTX 1660 SUPER Gaming Pro . It is more powerful than the recommended GeForce GTX 1060 and Radeon RX 580 , but for now it will be the best choice for games at 1080p/60FPS.

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The model from Palit is chosen as the most affordable dual-fan model, but with excellent cooling, which covers both the VRM and the memory chips.

For minimal settings, the Inno3D GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER Compact is perfect – the most inexpensive model from this line. The heat dissipation of these video cards is only about 100 watts, so it makes no sense to overpay for models with expensive cooling. It has only 4 GB of video memory, but a powerful chip allows you to comfortably play most popular online games. You can save even more by installing a regular GeForce GTX 1650 .

The game requires quad-core processors, this will allow us to save a lot of money. But the game will obviously need “fast” cores, so the lowest quad-core AM4 processors , such as Ryzen 3 1200 , will not work.

Based on this, for both the budget assembly and the average assembly on AMD, we will take one processor – Ryzen 3 3100 . It has excellent per-core performance, allowing it to outperform the six-core Ryzen 5 2600 in games. And also, moderate power consumption and the ability to work on the most inexpensive motherboards. Ryzen 3 3100 is one of the most optimal gaming processors in terms of price / performance ratio today .

For a budget build on Intel, we will take the Core i3-9100F . Yes, this processor is already from the past, the ninth generation, but these are the most affordable four cores from Intel. And in many games, especially multiplayer ones, they still “drag” perfectly. The box version costs only 200 rubles more than the OEM, so we take it, getting an additional guarantee, reliable packaging and a cooler in the kit.

But for the average assembly on Intel, we will take a new product – Core i3-10100 . In fact, we have before us the good old Core i7-7700K , also on the 14nm process technology, but much cheaper. It costs a couple of thousand rubles cheaper than the six-core processors of the previous generation from Intel, but due to eight threads it is practically not inferior to them in games.

We have decided on the main components. But the auxiliary ones – the motherboard, memory, drive, case, cooling and power supply, you can both improve and take cheaper. The main thing is the compatibility of the components.

Since both assemblies are inexpensive, we will call the option for maximum settings “medium”.

ASUS PRIME B450M-K is one of the cheapest B450 based motherboards yet has everything a modern PC needs, including NVMe support . In the future, it will be possible to upgrade to Zen 3 processors . Please note that to support Ryzen 3xxx processors , you need to update the motherboard BIOS at the time of purchase.

Ryzen processors are noticeably faster with 3000 MHz memory and above. Therefore, we will pay a little more and take A-Data XPG Gammix D10 3000 MHz memory. Horizon Zero Dawn requires at least 8 GB of memory, but in 2020 only an office PC can be built with this amount, so we take 16 GB.

With DEEPCOOL Ice Edge Mini FS V2.0 , you don’t have to worry about your Ryzen 3 3100 overheating.

The game requires 100 GB of storage, add Windows and a couple of other games to this and you will realize that 500 GB is the minimum for comfortable use of a PC in 2020. The A-Data XPG SX6000 Lite is slightly more expensive than the cheapest 500GB SSDs, but comes with a five-year warranty and high speeds over PCIe 3.0 x4.

The Deepcool DN 500W PSU is good for low-cost builds with a five-year warranty and an 80 PLUS certificate . Our PC will consume no more than 250 watts, so a budget PSU is more than enough.

The Aerocool Tomahawk-A is an inexpensive, attractive and well-ventilated case. Just do not forget to put an additional fan on blowing.

Budget build on Intel
We will take the MSI B365M PRO-VH board for the Intel assembly and replace the memory with AData Premier 2666 MHz (two sticks), since boards based on the B360 chipset do not support frequencies above 2666 MHz.

But you can install memory from an AMD build by running it at 2666 MHz with lower timings. This will give a good increase for the Core i3-9100F for only 300 rubles overpayment.

The rest of the components are similar to the assembly on AMD.

ASRock B450M Pro4 is not much more expensive than the board from the budget assembly, but the difference in functionality and quality is very noticeable. More PCIe x16, M.2, USB 3.2 and memory slots, high-quality power system with heatsinks.

Our processors are not hot-tempered, but we’ll take a slightly more expensive cooler for acoustic comfort. But from the RAM, at least, it is required to work at a frequency of 3200 MHz with AMD, and 2933 MHz with low timings for Intel. The Patriot Viper Blackout 3200 MHz is fine.

The A-Data XPG SX6000 Pro SSD is the older brother of the budget drive. A little more expensive, a little faster and with a more consistent speed. And with a higher work resource (TBW). Remember – these components are already secondary, and nothing prevents you from putting such an SSD in a budget assembly.

be quiet! SYSTEM POWER 9 500W is a quiet and reliable PSU with 80 PLUS Bronze certification . A popular choice for mid-level builds.
Deepcool MATREXX 55 is an excellent case, spacious, ventilated, cute and with tempered glass, but with one drawback – there are no fans included. Let’s fix this with a couple of Xilence XF051 fans .

Average build on Intel
Motherboard ASRock B460M-HDV
6 099 *
For the assembly at Intel, we will supply the ASRock B460M-HDV board , the most affordable one based on the B460 chipset . Secondary components are similar to the assembly on AMD.

Assemblies for Horizon Zero Dawn turned out to be inexpensive, but quite productive and assembled from high-quality components. The main question that the reader may have is “ Is it worth taking a quad-core for games in 2020?”

But we collect budget builds for a certain game, and if you start adding components “for growth”, you can easily exceed the budget by 50%.

Yes, and both processors from the average assembly – Ryzen 3 3100 and Core i3-10100 , perform well in games and are quickly becoming popular.