Building or upgrading a gaming PC? Right now you can pick up one of the best gaming CPUs and a matching motherboard for a great price, with an Intel Core i5 12400F six-core processor and a Gigabyte B660M Micro ATX motherboard costing just £260 when you use code SPEND15. (By comparison, the same CPU costs £200 by itself at Scan, making the motherboard a £60 pickup when it normally costs £110+.)
We dubbed the 12400F one of the best value gaming CPUs when it launched earlier this year. In our 12400F review, we noted it offered around 85 percent percent of the performance of the top-end Core i9 12900K in many games at 1080p, with even smaller margins at 1440p and 4K. If you're using a 1440p or 4K monitor, then going for the 12400F instead of CPUs like the 12600K, 12700K or 12900K that cost hundreds of pounds more is an absolute no-brainer.
The Core i5-12400F, outside of its gaming exploits, is also a great value CPU for content creation workloads, too. While its multi-core scores in Cinebench R23 come in below processors that offer higher core counts, its single core scores put above comparable Ryzen 5000 chips we've tested as well as the fastest 11th-gen Intel processors. That makes it one of the fastest six-core CPUs on the market, only falling behind the recently released (and much more expensive) Ryzen 7 7600X, so if you want to stream games, transcode videos or render 3D scenes, it's a good value choice.
Moving onto the other part of the bundle, the Gigabyte B660M DS3H DDR4 motherboard should provide a solid platform for you to build your system on. With it, you're getting a decent set of I/O with everything from HDMI to USB-C and 2.5-gig Ethernet for a speedy wired internet connection. If you want, this motherboard will also support RAM overclocking via XMP, but you can't overclock the CPU's clock speed, unfortunately - for that, you'll need a K-series CPU. In addition, while 12th gen Intel processors support PCIe 5.0 and DDR5, this B660-M is limited to DDR4 memory. Given how much better value DDR4 is than DDR5, this is no bad thing for a budget to mid-range system! Of course, if you want, you could certainly upgrade your motherboard down the line to add DDR5 support.
At this juncture, it's also worth highlighting than you can choose other CPUs to go with the B660M via the link above, ranging from the Intel Core i3-12100 (and its F variant) up to the i5-12600. For our money though, the 12400F and 12100F are the picks of the bunch, as they offer the best gaming performance for their respective prices - with the 12100F being a quad-core CPU that's still good for gaming but not great at content creation.
If you've any questions about your potential build, feel free to leave them below - and be sure to follow us on Twitter @dealsfoundry for more PC deals as we find them.