NZXT has released an intriguing pre-built PC for the age of graphics card scarcity: one powered by a Ryzen 5600G, a CPU with a built-in GPU that can be used for gaming. While NZXT’s $800 Foundation PC might not be the first choice for those looking to get into PC gaming under normal circumstances, the limited availability and high prices of dedicated GPUs (and machines that include them) make it an appealing option for budget-conscious buyers.
The AMD processor and graphics card are the highlights of the build, but the rest of the specs are also impressive: it includes a 500GB NVMe SSD and 16GB of RAM. While its 650W Bronze power supply isn’t going to win any efficiency awards, it should be able to power an RTX 3060 in the future if you can get your hands on one.
Of course, having a dedicated GPU is preferable in almost any gaming scenario, which is why most vendors include one — even the GTX 1650 included with the lowest-end HP Omen can outperform the graphics on the 5600G.
If you’re looking for one of those models, be aware that they’re a gold mine for scalpers, who will occasionally “shuck” a valuable GPU from a pre-built and sell the card and now-GPU-less PC separately (the $900 Omen’s Nvidia 1650 could sell for upwards of $300 on eBay). You won’t have to look long on eBay to find listings for pre-built gaming PCs with the words “NO GPU” or “without graphics card” in the title.
If you’re brave and know what to look for, you might be able to get a good deal on one of those scalper leftovers. While the integrated graphics on modern Intel CPUs aren’t as powerful as the 5600G, they’ll get you by until you can find a GPU.
Some manufacturers can at least alleviate concerns about scalpers snapping up their pre-builts by equipping base models with low-end GPUs that aren’t particularly desirable — iBuyPower’s AMD Ryzen 3rd Gen Starter PC, for example, ships with a Ryzen 3600 and an Nvidia GTX 1030 (which Tom’s Hardware claims are a tad slower than the 5600G’s integrated graphics for most games). However, that configuration is nearly $300 more expensive than the NZXT, and the CPU will be slower — iBuyPower will let you upgrade to a 5600G, but your 1030 will be rendered useless.
If the 5600G’s lack of utility to scalpers helps NZXT keep the Foundation in stock, it could be a good option for those who don’t want to build their own PCs but would be comfortable installing a graphics card later when they become more widely available. While some vendors will currently allow you to use the 5600G with an external graphics card, that configuration is unlikely to be worth fighting scalpers for.