The best $1000 Linux PC Build (AMD vs Intel)
What type of Linux computer can you build with a budget of $1000? Let’s find out!
A friend of mine has recently asked me to help him build a Linux computer. We’ve decided to build an AMD-based system. However, if you’ve been following me for a while, then you know I built an Intel-based system for myself some time ago. Now that I have experience with both AMD and Intel, we’ll explore what kind of computer works well for Linux you can get for $1000!
|Intel Core i7 9700K||AMD Ryzen 7 2700X|
|8 cores 8 threads||8 cores 16 threads|
|12 MB Cache||16 MB Cache|
|Intel UHD Graphics 630||no integrated graphics|
|no cooler||Wraith Stealth Cooler|
I’ve picked an Intel Core i7 9700K with an integrated graphics card because I don’t use software that needs a dedicated GPU. I also prefer a quiet computer to record a video tutorial for my YouTube channel. So, adding a GPU with its coolers would produce more noise and go above the budget of $1000.
On the other hand, my friend needs extensive performance. So, he chose to go with AMD Ryzen 7 2700X processor and a dedicated graphics card.
Overall, both of these CPUs are great and which one you chose to go with, largely depends on your use-case. They perform very similarly, with the Intel processor being a little better in single-core tasks and AMD having an edge in the multi-threaded tasks.
If you need a dedicated GPU, AMD is a better choice because it does not feature integrated graphics card and it comes with a cooler included in a box. So, you don’t pay extra for the integrated graphics and you save some money on the cooler.
If you don’t need a dedicated GPU, choosing an Intel processor with an integrated graphics card is a better choice.
Both these processors bear the additional cost, which you need to consider when you compare their price.
Additional Cost (cooler & GPU)
I’ve decided to pair my Intel Core i7 9700K with Noctua NH-U12A cooler. It is one of the quietest and best-performing coolers. Using this cooler, I could overclock Intel Core i7 9700K much more than I could overclock Ryzen 7 2700X.
In the end, AMD ends up being more expensive, but you benefit from better performance.
- Intel Core i7 9700K ($259) + Noctua NH-U12A ($99) = $358
- AMD Ryzen 7 2700X ($219) + Gigabyte Radeon RX580 ($210) = $429
Corsair Vengeance LPX RAM’s frequency for both systems is 3200MHz. This means it is the overclocked RAM and it requires XMP profile in your BIOS to benefit from this. Below, I’ll see the motherboards that both have an XMP profile for 3200MHz.
Regarding storage options, I recommend Samsung 970 EVO NVMe M.2 500GB ($59) as the best deal at the moment. NVMe storage dramatically improves your system’s performance. This is one of the Samsung’s latest and the most performant SSDs.
If you happen to need more storage, you can go with Samsung 860 EVO 1000GB ($99). It’s a still very fast SSD but not as fast as NVMe.
And if you do need very large storage space for backups and “garbage” files, you can’t go wrong with Seagate Barracuda 4TB 5400RPM ($79). It is very slow and also very cheap.
I have all three drives on my Intel-based system and use them accordingly. A friend of mine has installed Samsung 970 EVO NVMe SSD and Seagate Barracuda’s 4TB HDD.
The choice of the motherboard largely depends on individual needs. I usually go with the simplest and reasonably cheap option.
I’ve chosen Gigabyte Z390 UD ($110) motherboard for my Intel-based system and Gigabyte B450M DS3H V2 ($65) for AMD-based system. AMD’s one is a bit cheaper, but that’s because I’ve spent a good amount of money on a dedicated GPU. The differences between the two motherboards are not game-changing, so you can’t go wrong with either one.
Note, both these motherboards have 4 RAM slots, so you will be able to add more RAM in the future.
I recommend to buy a power supply from known brands and choose the best deals at the time you buy it. For these systems, you need a 450-550W or higher power supply.
Corsair RMX Series RM650x was the best deal at the time of building the AMD PC. It has a lower power consumption, cooler temperate and low noise even at full load! For a price of $110, it provides great value for the money.
However, for my Intel system, which I build earlier, I bought Corsair RM750X V2 750W, which was even cheaper ($103). But it is much more expensive now.
Having collected all those parts, it’s time to put them together in a case. My favorite case is Fractal Design Define C Black ($93). It’s a very nice-looking and functional case (supports various cooling options).
|Component Types||Intel-based System Components||Intel-based System Components Price||AMD-based System Components Price||AMD-based System Components|
|CPU||Intel Core i7 9700K||$259||$219||AMD Ryzen 7 2700X (with cooler)|
|GPU||Intel UHD Graphics 630||0||$210||Radeon RX580|
|RAM||Corsair 32GB (2x16GB) DDR4 3200MHz||$128||$128||Corsair 32GB (2x16GB) DDR4 3200MHz|
|Motherboard||Gigabyte Z390 UD||$110||$65||Gigabyte B450M DS3H V2|
|Cooler||Noctua NH-U12A BF19||$99||0||Wraith Stealth Cooler|
|SSD||Samsung 970 EVO NVMe M.2 500GBv||$59||$130||Samsung 970 EVO SSD 1TB M.2 NVMe|
|SSD||Samsung SSD 860 EVO 1TB 2.5”||$99||0||-|
|HDD||Seagate Barracuda 4TB 5400RPM SATA 3.5”||$79||$79||Seagate Barracuda 4TB 5400RPM SATA 3.5”|
|Power||Corsair RMX Series RM650x||$94||$94||Corsair RMX Series RM650x|
|Case||Fractal Design Define C Black||$93||$93||Fractal Design Define C Black|
Now that we’ve assembled both systems, let’s see which one is right for you! If your priority is CPU performance, you don’t need a dedicated graphics card, and you want a quiet system, then I would recommend going with the Intel-based system.
On the other hand, if you want maximum performance for your money, play games, or heavily utilize GPU for development purposes, then the AMD-based system is right for you!
Which build path do you prefer and why? Let’s discuss in the comments section below! 👇