best i3 Cpu for Gaming – With all things considered, should you pick an i3 or an i5 CPU for gaming? Honestly, if your PC will be used mainly for gaming, then the two key factors that you should consider are your budget and the GPU that you’ve got in mind.
As mentioned above, an i3 is the more affordable choice, so if you’re trying to put together a decent budget gaming PC, an affordable i3 model would be the better pick.
Then, of course, there’s the GPU. There’s no point in overspending on a CPU and underspending on a GPU, just as there’s no point in getting a powerful GPU that a cheaper CPU can’t keep up with. As mentioned in the bottlenecking section, you should pick the GPU first and the CPU second, ensuring that the two combine well.
As for an i3, it should only be a priority if you’ve got your sights set on a more powerful GPU or if you also intend on using some CPU-heavy programs that would make better use of an i5’s capabilities than most games could.back to menu ↑
1.Intel Core i3-9100F
The Core i3-9100F is one of Intel’s entry-level Desktop processors. It was released in 2019 with 4 cores and 4 threads. With base clock at 3.6GHz, max speed at 4.2GHz, and a 65W power rating. The Core i3-9100F is based on the Coffee Lake Refresh 14nm family and is part of the Core i3 series.
In our mind, the best processors are the ones that deliver outstanding performance at a reasonable price point. And, the Core i3-9100F absolutely nails this concept.back to menu ↑
2.Intel Core i3-10100
Just for starters, the AMD Ryzen 5 3400G, Ryzen 3 3200G, and Ryzen 3 3300X are all compatible with the same socket: Socket AM4. That same courtesy stretches up and down through many members of the Zen family, but for the sake of processors under , the difference between “upgrading today” and “not yet” can often hinge on the cost of a new motherboard between generations…or whether you need one at all.back to menu ↑
3.Intel Core i3-10300
The same cache structure is carried forward with the 10th generation “Comet Lake,” with the only difference being HyperThreading and slightly higher clock speeds.
The Core i3-10300 has the same hardware configuration as the Core i7-7700, for which Intel asked $300 before Ryzen came along. It is a 4-core/8-thread part with 8 MB of L3 cache shared between its cores. It is clocked higher than the Core i3-10100 we reviewed earlier this week and has 33% more L3 cache.
The “Comet Lake-S” microarchitecture sees Intel squeeze the last ounce of performance from the “Skylake” CPU core design by enabling HyperThreading across the lineup, Core i3 thru Core i9, and segmenting them with core counts. Compared to the previous-generation Core i3-9300, you get eight threads and slightly higher clock speeds (maximum Turbo Boost upticked from 4.30 GHz to 4.40 GHz).back to menu ↑
4.Intel Core i3-6100
But down toward the other end of the spectrum, where value matters more than absolute performance, things get a bit more complicated—especially for those interested in gaming. Due largely to the fact that modern consoles have multiple addressable cores, we’re seeing a growing number of AAA game titles that prefer, or in some cases even require, four cores (or four addressable threads) to run.
Intel’s lowest-price current-generation chips (such as the Pentium G4400) have just two cores, and they lack the company’s Hyper-Threading technology, which allows each core to handle two processing threads. This makes these chips poor choices for gamers, as we expect more high-profile titles to require more than two threads going forward.back to menu ↑
The processor, also known as the CPU, is the most important component on any gaming PC motherboard. It works alongside the graphics card to power your PC games. This Intel CPU has 2 cores, 4 threads and runs at a clock speed of 3.5 GHz.
PCGameBenchmark rates processors by how many of the top 1,000 PC games the chip can run.This Intel CPU can run 661 of the top 1000 games – so we give it a 66% rating.back to menu ↑
6.Intel BX80677G3930back to menu ↑
7.Intel Core i3-4130
For a few years now, AMD’s budget-friendly A-Series chips—combined CPUs and graphics processors, which the company dubs “accelerated processing units,” or APUs—had a two-fold advantage over Intel’s lower-end Core CPUs. The first is that the AMD parts have held a strong lead in integrated-graphics performance.
In recent years, the integrated graphics silicon on Intel’s consumer processors has improved greatly, but it still hasn’t caught up with the graphics capabilities on AMD’s parallel chips in the same price ranges.back to menu ↑
8.Intel Core i3-2370Mback to menu ↑
9.Intel Core i3-9350KF
To shore up its defenses in the high-volume budget arena, Intel infused the Core i3-9350KF with its Turbo Boost 2.0 feature, marking the first time the company has offered the feature on the range of processors. But that’s it.
Intel is besieged by the strength of the Ryzen processors in price brackets that land either slightly below or above the 9350KF. AMD’s competing chips offer more cores and threads and come with plenty of other advantages, like overclocking on lower-end motherboards, PCIe 4.0 on third-gen Ryzen models, and capable stock coolers that afford some overclocking headroom.back to menu ↑
10.Intel Core i3-3240
Intel Core i3-3240 Processor with the most popular Processors over the last 30 days. Components that offer the best value for money have great performance (yellow) and a low price (green). The smaller the overlap between the yellow and green bars, the better the value for money.back to menu ↑
best i3 Cpu for Gaming – BUYER’S GUIDE
Now, the most worrisome question about Core i3 CPUs. Are they future-proof? Well, to be honest, 4 cores and 4 threads definitely isn’t future-proof at the moment. More and more games are built to prefer more cores, not higher clocks. On the other hand, Core i3 processors are still solid for playing current AAA games and Esports titles.
And don’t worry, future multiplayer-focused games will be more than playable on 4 cores. But, starting with 2021 and the arrival of next-gen consoles, AAA games will demand more than 4 cores. You will be able to play them at 60 FPS without stuttering with lower details, but if you want a proper future proof budget build, look at AMD.
Getting the Ryzen 5 2600 along with a quality B450 board will allow you to upgrade to a Ryzen 3700X CPU with 8 cores/16 threads. Even 12 core Ryzen 9 3900X. These 2 CPUs will definitely allow high end gaming once the next-gen consoles arrive.
Your other option is to get one of the aforementioned B360 boards along with a Core i3 CPU and later upgrade. You can pick Core i5-9600 or Core i7-9700. Not as fast as K variants but still quite powerful CPUs for gaming. Either way you should invest in a good fan to prevent possible overheating since the ones that come by default are rather lackluster.
Finally, getting the 10100 CPU and pairing it with a quality B460 board can make you a futureproof gaming machine. Once 4 cores and 8 threads stop being enough for new games just replace the Core i3 CPU with a non-K Core i7 or i9 and you’ll be fine for years to come. Or you can get a quality B550 board and pair it with the 3300X. And once the 3300X stops being competitive for gaming (it’ll take a couple of years, the same can be said about the Core i3-10100) replace it with an 8 or 12 core CPU.back to menu ↑
Frequently Asked Questions
Is an i3 good for gaming?
Yes, an i3 is actually decent enough to run a lot modern games at 60 frames per second when equipped with a proper graphics card. Just don’t expect triple digit frame rates at high end settings.
Which i3 is best for gaming?
The best Core i3 CPU for gaming is the Core i3-10100. The 10300 is too expensive while offering only 100MHz higher clocks, which translates into one or two percent performance gain. If you’re willing to search eBay for a killer pre-owned deal the Core i3-9100F could be a good choice. But if you’re looking for a pre-owned CPU, it’s better to get something like the Ryzen 5 2600. You can find excellent deals with prices similar to used 9100F CPUs, but the 2600 comes with 6 cores and 12 threads, which is a much more horsepower both for current and future games.
best i3 Cpu for Gaming – Core i3 CPUs are still a solid choice for gaming on a budget. If you want to get an Intel Core i3 processor for gaming, here are your best choices.
Years ago, Intel’s Core i3 series was the best choice for budget gaming setups. The combination of 2 cores with hyperthreading was enough to run every single game on max settings at 1080p. That era ended with the arrival of Ryzen CPUs from AMD in 2017. Once Ryzen came and offered 4 cores along with hyperthreading for the price of 2 cores/4 threads Core i3 CPUs we had a new budget gaming king.