Question Cheap build for new Microsoft Flight Simulator?

Mar 20, 2020
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I'm looking for a good, inexpensive build that would comfortably run the new MS flight simulator for my father in law. I could assemble for him, but not sure what the best build would be. I'd love to give him "good" and "better" options, if possible. He literally will use he PC solely for this game. 👍

Latest expected system requirements I've seen are:

Minimum Requirements, Predicted
  • OS: Win 7 64.
  • Processor: Intel Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz / AMD FX-8320.
  • Graphics: AMD Radeon R9 380 or NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960 2GB.
  • System Memory: 8 GB RAM.
  • Storage: 50 GB Hard drive space.
  • DirectX 11 Compatible Graphics Card.
Oct 5, 2019
 

Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
What resolution will he be looking to play this at? 1080p? 1440p? 4k?

Is he going to need a Windows license or does he currently have a machine with either Windows 7, 8 or 10 installed on it that can have it's license moved to this new machine?
 
Reactions: 6Sean
Mar 20, 2020
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If he is only interested in this one game and wanting to keep it cheap then what about an XBox One X?
It's a thought. Main concern would be that he enjoys his current version of MS Flight Simulator and is used to a keyboard and joystick setup. Not sure that the Xbox peripherals would work for him.
 
Mar 20, 2020
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What resolution will he be looking to play this at? 1080p? 1440p? 4k?

Is he going to need a Windows license or does he currently have a machine with either Windows 7, 8 or 10 installed on it that can have it's license moved to this new machine?
Sorry, maybe I should have replied directly to you vs. creating a new reply to the post. 1080p is probably fine for him. He's got a windows 10 machine now, but would probably keep it for their main PC so we're looking at needing an OS as well.
 
It's a thought. Main concern would be that he enjoys his current version of MS Flight Simulator and is used to a keyboard and joystick setup. Not sure that the Xbox peripherals would work for him.
You would need to check but I believe the XBox version supports the same peripherals as the pc version. However he won’t be able to run any other version of FS.
 
Reactions: 6Sean

Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
Good "cheap" 1080p option.

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: Intel Core i5-9400F 2.9 GHz 6-Core Processor ($119.99 @ Best Buy)
Motherboard: ASRock B365 Pro4 ATX LGA1151 Motherboard ($89.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws V Series 8 GB (2 x 4 GB) DDR4-2666 Memory ($44.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: SanDisk SSD PLUS 240 GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($44.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: MSI Radeon RX 580 8 GB ARMOR OC Video Card ($154.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Fractal Design Focus G ATX Mid Tower Case ($56.87 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair TXM Gold 650 W 80+ Gold Certified Semi-modular ATX Power Supply ($72.75 @ Amazon)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Home OEM 64-bit ($109.99 @ B&H)
Total: $694.56
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2020-03-20 23:12 EDT-0400



Much better option

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3600 3.6 GHz 6-Core Processor ($174.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: MSI B450 TOMAHAWK MAX ATX AM4 Motherboard ($114.99 @ Best Buy)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws V 16 GB (2 x 8 GB) DDR4-3600 Memory ($69.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: SanDisk Ultra 3D 500 GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($64.99 @ Adorama)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon RX 5600 XT 6 GB WINDFORCE OC Video Card ($279.99 @ B&H)
Case: Fractal Design Focus G ATX Mid Tower Case ($56.87 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair TXM Gold 650 W 80+ Gold Certified Semi-modular ATX Power Supply ($72.75 @ Amazon)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Home OEM 64-bit ($109.99 @ B&H)
Total: $944.56
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2020-03-20 23:31 EDT-0400
 
Reactions: 6Sean
Mar 20, 2020
6
0
10
0
Good "cheap" 1080p option.

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: Intel Core i5-9400F 2.9 GHz 6-Core Processor ($119.99 @ Best Buy)
Motherboard: ASRock B365 Pro4 ATX LGA1151 Motherboard ($89.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws V Series 8 GB (2 x 4 GB) DDR4-2666 Memory ($44.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: SanDisk SSD PLUS 240 GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($44.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: MSI Radeon RX 580 8 GB ARMOR OC Video Card ($154.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Fractal Design Focus G ATX Mid Tower Case ($56.87 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair TXM Gold 650 W 80+ Gold Certified Semi-modular ATX Power Supply ($72.75 @ Amazon)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Home OEM 64-bit ($109.99 @ B&H)
Total: $694.56
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2020-03-20 23:12 EDT-0400

...
Thanks! That's a good starting point for me to talk through with him. Also a good contrast to a possible Xbox One option.
 
Mar 20, 2020
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You would need to check but I believe the XBox version supports the same peripherals as the pc version. However he won’t be able to run any other version of FS.
It looks like it does indeed support them. That's a really good point then -- he'd be choosing between a $250 Xbox One setup that may take his current wireless keyboard and joystick as inputs and a $600+ PC. Either way he'll have to buy the game.

Microsoft is enabling mouse and keyboard support for its Xbox One console today. ... Most modern wired or wireless USB keyboards and mice will work on the Xbox One, and Microsoft is also partnering with Razer to launch a wireless mechanical keyboard and mouse set that's designed for Xbox.Nov 14, 2018
 
The minimum requirements are one thing, especially "predicted" minimum requirements, meaning someone made them up based on their best guess. Getting the game to actually run "well" on that hardware is another. A lot of flight simulator software tends to be rather demanding, so I would expect Flight Simulator 2020 to be no different.

At this point, it's difficult to say whether the game would benefit the most from more CPU or graphics performance, or how much would be needed to make it run "well". Also, one person might find below 30fps to be reasonable, while another might prefer higher frame rates.

Your best bet is probably to wait until the simulator comes out, when people will have a better idea of how it will run on various hardware, so you can get the most performance for the money. I don't think a specific release date has even been announced yet, but it might not be coming out until fall, when the new Xbox comes out. As for a base-model Xbox One? That system came out over 6 years ago at this point, and it would not surprised me if the game looked or performed substantially worse on that hardware than on a mid-range PC. And while it's possible that the console might support some PC flight-sticks, that doesn't necessarily mean it will work right with all of them.
 

MadsModsat

Prominent
Oct 10, 2019
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All previous Microsoft Flightsimulator games (and X-plane as well) has always been incredibly CPU dependant, and not really benefitting a lot from a highend graphics card. Personally, I really hope this isn't true for the upcomming Flightsimulator 2020.
It would be nice to get more then 40 fps with all the eyecandy turned on and lots of add-on content for once - good thing the game is very slow paced.

I think it is excellent advice as posted above, to wait for the game to actually become available, because it will be impossible to predict what a perfect setup for the new game will be, and it would be such a shame to spend most of the budget on a GPU, only to find out the game is CPU bound, or the other way around.
 
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Darkbreeze

Titan
Moderator
Given the eye candy I've seen so far from this game, indications are that this is not going to be your daddy's Flight simulator. It's is likely that it is going to bring a higher requirement for the level of GPU performance than past versions, but I have to agree that waiting for the game to actually be released AND reviewed, is a good idea. If this were not the only title that was going to be focused on I wouldn't be AS worried about it, because those are both (Or maybe even Xbox series X) good general purpose gaming systems for 1080p, although at different levels, but it's better to be safe than sorry.

It could definitely turn out that going with a 3700x and a lower tiered graphics card might be a better specific solution but there's no way to know that right now.

I think the chances are VERY GOOD that you WILL need a high end graphics card and possibly you might want more than 16GB to meet the recommended rather than minimum, requirements. I'd wait.

 

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