Building a gaming PC is one thing, but putting together a machine that can not only handle playing a PC title but can also encode a continuous stream and publish it to the outside world, that's a whole different ballpark. Luckily, it's not difficult to build a PC that can do both to a degree, and if you want to take streaming seriously, you can later add a separate dedicated streaming machine. I've rounded up some components that would work perfectly fine for gaming and streaming on the same PC.

PC case: NZXT H500

The H500 is NZXT's mid-range mid-tower PC case that provides excellent cable management, two included fans, dust screens, and a tempered-glass side panel to show off your hardware. It's also ready for water-cooling.

$72 at Amazon

Motherboard: ASUS Prime X470-Pro

If you opt to go with AMD Ryzen for the great value offered per core, the ASUS Prime X470-Pro is a great motherboard. You get NVMe support with a heatsink to keep the drive cooled, Gigabit LAN, Fan Xpert 4, and great components for serious workloads. Plus, because we'll need a beastly GPU for this build, the anchored PCIe slot should help prevent card sag.

$140 at Amazon

CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 2700X

This is a monster of a CPU. For the price, you get an eight-core CPU with 16 threads, which is more than enough to play through most modern titles these days with threads available for handling the encoding of a live stream. It's not perfect and a dedicated PC will always be better, but if you need everything on one PC, this chip should do well.

$280 at Amazon

RAM: Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB Kit

Corsair's Vengeance LPX 3000 MHz DDR4 RAM comes in a dual 8GB configuration and will fit the ASUS motherboard without interfering with any other parts. Each stick is covered in an aluminum heat spreader for better dissipation, and it's black to match the rest of the hardware. A 32GB kit is also available if you need the additional headroom.

$80 at Amazon

GPU: MSI Ventus OC RTX 2060

MSI's Ventus RTX 2060 isn't flashy, but it runs cool and delivers ray tracing and deep learning supersampling (DLSS) perks that are the main selling points of the RTX cards. It has 6GB of GDDR6 VRAM, dual fans, and for output, it offers three DisplayPort 1.4 and one HDMI 2.0b. It's perfect for playing games at 1080p settings and perfect for live streams.

$359 at Amazon

M.2 PCIe SSD: Samsung EVO Plus 250GB

Having an M.2 PCIe solid-state drive (SSD) onboard means crazy fast Windows 10 boots and otherwise outstanding performance (read speeds of beyond 3,000 MB/s) when loading apps. Samsung's EVO Plus is a solid storage drive and the 250GB option is more than enough for the OS, apps and other software we need for live streaming.

$80 at Amazon

HDD: Seagate BarraCuda 2TB

While having an M.2 PCIe SSD on board for superior performance is recommended, adding an enormous HDD for bulk storage is also a great choice. M.2 SSDs quickly get expensive since you add more space, and for a lot of games, it just isn't necessary. This 2TB HDD from Seagate costs just less and is hidden out of sight by the NZXT case design.

$60 at Amazon

PSU: NZXT E650

The E-series PSUs leverage Seasonic internals alongside NZXT's CAM monitoring software. They keep the power flowing with high-quality hardware and a welcomed 10-year warranty. NZXT and Seasonic assemble a powerful duo for ATX-compatible PC power. Overlooking its sometimes-loud fan, this 650W PSU is great for both every day and enthusiast setups.

$100 at Amazon

If you want better performance, build a dedicated streaming PC

Live Streaming PC

With the hardware listed above, you can build a capable streaming PC for about $1,200 (excluding the cost of Windows 10 and peripherals). Everything is compatible and should work together without any extra effort on your part, and there's room for improvement in the future. However, if you want to get real serious about streaming, you can build another separate dedicated streaming PC to take some of the load off the main gaming rig.

A secondary, dedicated streaming PC alongside the build above is a good idea because it would offload much of the work the gaming PC would need to do for actual streaming. Your main PC could then be used for solely playing games and this streaming PC would handle all the recording, encoding, streaming, and everything else — all for under $1,000.

PC case: NZXT H200

The NZXT H200 has everything we need to put together a small dedicated streaming PC. We're not going to be pumping out much heat or require immense amounts of power so a mini-ITX form factor is perfect.

$86 at Amazon

Motherboard: GIGABYTE B450 I AORUS PRO

We don't require much space so a small form factor PC build and mini-ITX motherboard is a great combination. The GIGABYTE B450 I AORUS PRO supports 2nd-gen AMD Ryzen processors, has an M.2 slot, USB 3.1 Gen 2, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, and high-quality components.

$120 at Amazon

CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 2600

The Ryzen 5 26000 is a fantastic CPU and one we recommend for most gaming rigs. For a dedicated streaming PC, the six-core and 12-thread configuration will be more than enough for broadcasting software. Partnering up this CPU with an affordable, budget-friendly GPU will provide more than enough performance for live streaming.

$146 at Amazon

RAM: Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB Kit

Ryzen CPUs love fast RAM and the Vengeance LPX kit from Corsair is exactly that. 16GB should be more than enough for broadcast software and other apps to run on a dedicated streaming PC. Corsair's Vengeance LPX 3000 MHz DDR4 RAM comes in a dual 8GB configuration and will fit the GIGABYTE motherboard without interfering with any other parts.

$80 at Amazon

GPU: Gigabyte GT 1030

It's never a good idea to rely on integrated graphics on a streaming PC since that'll put more strain on the CPU. Opting for a budget GPU will let broadcasting software use the GPU if needs for better efficiency. The GT 1030 isn't a powerful GPU, but we don't require it to play games and so it becomes an ideal choice for our dedicated streaming machine.

$90 at Amazon

M.2 PCIe SSD: Samsung EVO Plus 250GB

Our motherboard comes rocking an M.2 slot, so we may as well make the most of it. We'll be using Samsung's excellent EVO Plus 256GB PCIe M.2 SSD again for great speed and reliability. It's also the perfect size for installing a few apps as well as Windows 10.

$80 at Amazon

Capture card: Elgato HD60S

Since we're rocking a Mini-ITX motherboard with a single PCIe slot, which is occupied by our GPU, we'll need to go with the Elgato HD60S, an external capture card. Hook up this unit to both the gaming PC and the rear of this streaming rig and you'll be good to go. As an all-rounder, you can't go far wrong with the Elgato HD60S.

$169 at Amazon

PSU: NZXT E650

The E-series PSUs leverage Seasonic internals alongside NZXT's CAM monitoring software. They keep the power flowing with high-quality hardware and a welcomed 10-year warranty. NZXT and Seasonic assemble a powerful duo for ATX-compatible PC power. Overlooking its sometimes-loud fan, this 650W PSU is great for both every day and enthusiast setups.

$100 at Amazon

Start small, dream big

For 1080p gaming, our top PC build is more than enough. You'll be able to enjoy most PC games on good to high settings without an issue, thanks to the performance offered by the Ryzen 7 CPU and NVIDIA RTX 2060 GPU. When it comes to streaming, you'll be able to link up your favorite broadcasting software and start firing out game footage to viewers. No single PC will be the best solution for streaming, but this machine will be ideal to get started.

Once your viewer count has increased and you begin to make some money from streaming, you'll be able to invest the earnings into a secondary PC, which would be able to take the feed from this gaming rig and handle all the encoding. Not only would this allow for you to crank up the in-game settings slightly, but also enjoy a smoother streaming experience. The only drawback to adding a second PC is the cost. Should you have both PCs built, connected, and ready to go, you're prime for streaming to the world.

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