Intel vs AMD Question

I am looking to build a gaming computer that will be able to play games on highest settings without having to upgrade the CPU for 2 or 3 years. I don't know much about computers, i pretty much just play on them. (i also usually have many things up at once so good multi tasking is a plus)

Which of these would be a better choice for what i am looking for?

AMD FX-8150 Zambezi 3.6GHz Socket AM3+ 125W Eight-Core Desktop Processor FD8150FRGUBOX

Intel Core i7-3930K Sandy Bridge-E 3.2GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) LGA 2011 130W Six-Core Desktop Processor BX80619i73930K

And why would an 8 core processor be so much less expensive then a 6 core. I've been told the intel architecture is better but i am not sure exactly how much that effects performance.

Edit: After reading some more, i realize a quad core is probably all i need for gaming but i would still love to know the justification for difference in price of those two vs performance. And how much the cores actually matter
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  1. Best answer
    All you really need a Quad Core Intel Core i5-3570k. The vast majority of games only use 2 cores, the are very few games that can use 4 cores. The only game that can make use of 6 cores is Battlefield 3, but it is an exception and only in multiplayer mode.

    AMD's FX CPUs are cheap because they do not perform as well as Intel CPUs. Phenom II / FX CPUs have about 29% less processing performance on average than Intel's current Ivy Bridge generation CPUs which are in turn about 5% better than the previous Sandy Bridge CPUs; assuming the same clockspeed for all CPUs. The overall performance (or lack thereof) dictates the price based on consumer demand. AMD had to drop the price of the FX-8150 twice since it was released, while Sandy Bridge CPU remained the same and only dropped $5 with the release of Ivy Bridge CPUs. A FX-8150 can compete against Ivy Bridge CPUs, but only in specific applications that can make use of the 8 cores such as video encoding (assuming the program and video codec are highly multithreaded), 3D rendering, and file compression.

    Sandy Bridge-E CPUs are powerful, but they are geared towards the enthusiasts who do not mind paying the high price for a high performance CPU. Since it seems you are only interested in playing games the 6 core i7-3930k is not really necessary.

    Additionally, all Core i7 have Hyper Threading (HT) which acts like virtual cores to boost performance by 0% - 40% depending on how well (if at all) the program has been optimized to take advantage of HT. Games do not use HT, therefore, there is no reason to buy a Core i7 CPU if gaming is your primary concern.
  2. Best answer selected by Kirby_.
  3. Great thanks for the suggestion and explanation!
  4. You have a simple question where the answer can be really lenghty in explanations.

    To resume it all. Both are decent for next couple of years minimum at highest setting of course. yet, I would go with intel for the simple reason I know I will not have a crippled/bottlenecked CPU in some areas; therefore gaming is one thing but working on photoshop, after effect and other intensive CPU and/or CPU features dominate my choice. performance is affected on Zambezi because there is minimum a bottleneck at L1 and L2 level cache if I am not making mistakes. To dumbing and simplifying visually, it is like trying to make an elephant pass through a house door, it takes more time do so than a bunch of humans; therefore it works but it can slutter in some cases. As for gaming alone, I do not believe it will affect performances, yet, I cannot certify it. Also Piledriver, zambezi later brother coming on the market will fix some of the zambezi issues but not all. Know one thing, AMD left the race to compete with Intel and nowadays focus more on servering CPU. Zambezi is the first of this generation.

    Although for gaming alone at highest setting, the CPU is one thing but the most important is your GPU. A latest ATI or Nvidia is strongly suggested.
    Lastly: Even though Zambezi is competitive, I would still go with a 3930k, slowler clock but I believe it would crush zambezi is 95% of cases. On top of it, 3930k is quad channel meaning you have 8 memory slots, Zambezi remains on dual channels meaning 4 slots.
    Hope this helps to lightly understand the issue with Zambezi without pages of explanations and data and reviews links on performances.

    Type google: benchmark AMD FX-8150 then benchmark Intel Core i7-3930K and try to figure out reviews and comparisons for games, you will have a better overview than anyone here trying to provide explanations.
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